Thursday, August 18, 2011


Treating each other as grown-up, as equals, gives us our best chance at loving each other.  Wow, isn't that an interesting statement?  It certainly cuts through some "ancient" some times unconscious beliefs about the make-up of a couple relationship.  And there is an interesting word, make-up.  So many different connotations for a relationship

So, traditionally, the man is often considered the head, the woman, the heart.  What the heck does that mean?  Well, interestingly enough, the head is thought to be dominant and the heart soft, squishy, and ultimately submissive.  However, biologically speaking, that makes no sense.  In fact, you can't  have one without the other.  So how we came to using that metaphor to support male dominance is beyond me.

When I think about the relationships I am privileged to be in the same room with as a therapist, when I look back on all of my personal relationships, I feel stunned because there are so many relationships where we try to make a case for, that love does exist here, especially since love is not a feeling but a decision.  But the reality is when I am hell-bent on throwing barbs and criticism at the other, when I am geared-up to slamming the other to win the round, when I am focused on making the other out to be the bad guy or bad gal, when I hold, steadfast in my heart, a trump card that allows me to leave the exit door open just in case, ....well, that just is not love no matter how you try to slice it.

Love is not present in these relationships, and perhaps you have a decision to either bring love back into the relationship or not, but sometimes, the relationship has just died, period.  Too many previous heart attacks, too many previous brain bleeds, too many aneurysms, too much clotting, the relationship is stroked out, dead.  And yes, both parties are responsible for the death of the relationship.  They are both called to grieve this death.  In fact, whenever we lose, whatever it is, the loss demands our bodies, our souls, our brains, our hearts to grieve.  And we can either grieve freely or our bodies, at some point, will take us down, as in a wrestling match, and force us to grieve, sometimes resulting in yet another death.

So to avoid all that, for heaven's sake, start treating each other as grown-up or as grown-ups.  Take the time to look at your own history of relationships and the blueprint for your relationships.  Yes, the blueprint.

The blueprint is what you experienced in your relationship with Mom and Dad or whoever your caretakers were.  It is the sum total and then "sum" of all your relationship experiences.  As a child, we have no control over the blueprint.  It drives us, and often drives us, time and time again, into one unhealthy relationship after another.

But as adults, we can examine the blueprint and literally work at changing the blueprint.  It is sometimes scary changing the blueprint because the blueprint represents what we are most familiar with no matter how destructive.  .

Changing the blueprint may actually make it possible to give new life, a transplant, so to speak, to an old tired self destructing relationship.  But all those involved in the relationship must be willing to say good bye to the current relationship, the "old" relationship,  The new relationship will look nothing like the old one, in fact, if the new relationship is to be new, it can't look anything like the "old" relationship.  When we decide to give new life to an old relationship, it may require very radical changes.  People give up life long addictions, for example.  Sometimes, the new relationship may call us to have the the courage to leave or end a relationship. 

A new relationship can make it possible for people to really love each other in a way not possible in the old relationship.  For example, when a couple divorces, they can literally love each other perhaps for the first time because whatever got triggered in the context of marriage, is no longer an ingredient.  They can then become the "best" for those who are dependent upon their relationship, for example minor and adult children.

It seems sad or ironic at first when that happens.  So why couldn't they stay married and have a good relationship?   And we may even go so far as to wonder why God allows such painful things to occur.  Well, because God gives us free will and God allows us to grow and develop through out experiences without judging them the way we do.  It is not about getting off course or back on course.  It is not about doing the right thing versus the wrong thing.  It is always about moving forward, growing, learning, doing our best to "sin" no more.

So take a look at your relationships.  What is your blueprint for these relationships?  And it may not be too late to make some serious adjustments to the blueprint.  Chapter Five in From The Frying Pan To The Jacuzzi provides some excellent support in making such adjustments.

Monday, July 11, 2011


Being able to share your expectations for your vacation with  your sweatheart may be a daunting task.  You may end up really angry with each other weeks before the vacation even begins.  You may start out the vacation feeling hurt and feeling hopeless that what you hope to get out of the vacation just isn't going to happen.

So why ruin an otherwise perfect vacation by sharing ahead of time your expectations?  Are you nuts?

Well,  you might be nuts not to.  I mean why go on a vacation where nothing that you hope for happens?  Talk about resentment building and Oh, look out for that Thanksgiving Dinner ten years from now when you've had a little too much wine and you begin letting not only your sweet heart, but the entire family know what a "B" your sweet heart really is for never paying attention to what you want out of your vacations together!  It gets even more interesting when the glass of wine is tossed in his or her face!!  Watch the movie "Home For the Holidays."

And I am NOT recommending tossing glasses of wine in anyone's face.

So how do you go about discussing such a thing as vacation expectations?  Well, there is a way.  You start out by simply LISTENING to your sweetheart's expectations without comment.  Your sweetheart listens to your expectations also without comment.  It really isn't a difficult as it sounds.  It's a simple decision you make to listen to each other without comment.  You let the other's expectations roll around in your head for a few days, and while they are rolling around up there, you begin to acknowledge to yourself what you can live with.  Yes, what can you live with.  NOT what you agree with, not what you disagree with, not what seems stupid or ridiculous or manipulative or a waste of vacation time and money, but WHAT YOU CAN LIVE WITH.

In the corporate world, they refer to this as a process of consensus.  It is VERY different from compromise and it is NOT compromise.

In order to "do" consensus, the two of you need to shift into INTERDEPENDENCE.  The book is all about interdependence, and the final chapter, "Know There Is A Dance" is all about the developmental stages of a relationship which culminate, so to speak, in interdependence.  Interdependence is the part of the dance that brings all the other stages together into "wholeyness."

Check out Vacation Expectations  on hubpages for more details.  Check out the book for even more details.  Buy a book for a friend as well.  A small price for a happy vacation and a happy relationship.


Saturday, February 12, 2011


Hey Guys,

You gotta stop making us ALL look bad.  Now if you bought her a vacuum cleaner last year....  You didn't really did you?  Come on.  And you wonder why you haven't gotten any?  Come on, get a grip!  Okay, so you got her the vacuum last year.  This year, DO NOT,  DO NOT, get her a set of steak knives or any kind of cutlery or scissors.  Don't even think chainsaw, even if she does like to trim the hedges and the trees.  She will go after only one kind of wood this years.  YOURS.

AND DO NOT say to her, "Honey, you know I am not the romantic type."  You're suicidal, you idiot.  Tell her you're not the romantic type now or anywhere near or after Valentine's Day, and you might as well tell her you can't stand sex because you will not have sex until Mother's Day when you will get another shot at being romantic and getting her an exciting gift.

Look, Lent does not begin until March 09, and if you keep talking this ignorant male BS, your Lent is going to start today.

ONE MORE THING.  CHANGE, you idiot.  Don't tell me you can't because I saw you practicing on the trapeze bar in the backyard trying to get your body flexible enough to do those wild positions that are absolutely impossible except for double jointed midgets and very very very skinny people.  It is all fake.  Do not believe a thing you see or you will die trying.  But notice what you are willing to put yourself through for a muscle cramp.  So yeah, you can find the motivation to change.  And a big help in this department here is the book, From The Frying Pan To The Jacuzzi.  Buy it NOW.  There is still time.  And if you live anywhere in Southern California, call me to make an appointment and give that as a gift as well.  951-440-9417.






Thursday, February 10, 2011


What is the very BEST gift to RECEIVE on Valentine’s Day?

I’ve heard it said that women like to receive jewelry, and I heard a very funny joke from a woman friend about how women get jewelry.  Unfortunately I can’t tell it here!

It is rumored that besides jewelry, women also like flowers, chocolates, a CARD, and AFFECTION.

Men have the reputation of being satisfied with a romp in the bed or if they are farmers, a romp in the hay.  I think most men would be willing to forgo the romp for just a little sex!  What?  Romp and sex are the same?  Oh!

But aside from what is rumored about men and women, what IS the best gift that you can RECEIVE on Valentine’s Day?  What is going to make your heart grow fonder?

I think we have probably become pretty good at GIVING what we think will please the other person, and maybe even skillful at taking and demanding, but this RECEIVING “thing” is another story.

I know for some of us, perhaps the best gift to receive would be FREEDOM and not FREEDOM from but FREEDOM within.  And it is a gift that we can receive only from ourselves.  Wow!  Imagine that.  So we can’t blame anyone for not giving it to us!  We can’t blame anyone if we are not free.

And as I look back over my 65 years of being in relationships, I have to ask myself what stopped me from giving myself that freedom?  Why did I hold my breath for so long?  Why did I blame so many other people for strangling me, choking me, holding me hostage?  How did I allow myself to be possessed in relationships?  At rock bottom, it was probably FEAR that drove me to give up my freedom.

Although these following gifts are also gifts that I really can give myself and perhaps better give myself, they are also gifts which are kind of cool to RECEIVE from another person.

❦For you to tell me that you love me.

Come on, guys, get the words out.  Practice in the car till the words become second nature.  Of course, you don’t talk like that, because you’re an idiot.  Come on, the three most simplest words.  Stop making it so difficult.  Just say them.  Forget whether or not you talk like that.

❦For you to tell me that I am sexy.

❦For you to tell me that I am intelligent and you think I am smart, perhaps tell me I am smarter than you!

❦For you to tell me that you trust me....with the car keys and the new car!

❦For you to tell me I am beautiful.

It’s all just simple stuff, right?  If you cannot give these simple gifts, then maybe, it’s a worth a good look at your “relationship” and maybe it isn’t a relationship.

So join the discussion on Facebook and share with us.

And don’t forget one really excellent choice for a gift is this wonder filled book, From The Frying Pan To The Jacuzzi.  ORDER NOW FROM AMAZON 

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


Honey, I know you threatened to get Fred, that rottweiler, to keep me in line when I refused to do the simple things, like say “I love you.”  But what if I do one better and get this really cool, well, really HOT gift for Valentine’s?  I’ve heard it really does a trick on your relationship.

You start talking some pretty sizzling and hot stuff together, and you might as well be in the jacuzzi while you’re doin’ it, this...this...well, it’s like a recipe book.  Well, no, not a cookbook, but it will get our relationship cooking again.

They say we can do this thing in bed, while sitting at the breakfast table together, while at the beach.  Well, I should stop talking about it.  I haven’t gotten it yet for us, but the fact is I am about to.  And it’s easy.  I don’t have to spend hours at the jewelry story looking at ten thousand dollar diamonds and feeling like a cheap date!  And you know what?  Well, I was wondering if there’s a book you have wanted to buy for a long time and just haven’t for whatever reason, because I could order it with our Valentine’s gift and get free shipping.  And the money we save on shipping, well, maybe we could get a yogurt together. That’d be romantic, no?  This is a guarantee of changes from me, honey.  I would hope you might make a few as well, but....hey, this is my gift to you.  Love ya.

From The Frying Pan To The Jacuzzi. Order your copy today


Monday, February 7, 2011


Honey, I wanted to put some of the hot and sizzle back into our relationship without the burn and the sting.  So I got something special for both of us for Valentine's Day.  Something we can do together.  Something that will be worth more than the diamonds, last longer than the roses, sustain us during those times when our love making for whatever reason gets put on the back burner.  You know, headache time!

We can do a little bit or even a lot, every night, or even at breakfast before we head out for work in the morning.  On our days off, we can lay in bed and do it together.  Someone said it is worth a year in therapy, and really good when the jacuzzi goes on the blink.

So open it up, Honey.  Do you like it?  Look inside.  It says just exactly what you are always telling me, but I haven't listened.  Dave said he and Neff are doing it and it's making a huge difference.  I got it on Amazon, Honey.  No, it's not, well sort of like a cook book, but more a way to get us cooking again.



Saturday, January 15, 2011


Why would such a wonderful experience like intimacy feel like imprisonment?  A very good question.  It’s not a simple answer.  But for whatever reason, intimate (not inmate) relationships trigger a lot of OLD STUFF.  Whatever we experienced in those primordial relationships, for better for worse, it all gets triggered when we engage in an intimate relationship....An intimate relationship starts out all “cool” and all “hot” at the same time.  But then something happens....The relationship is no longer fun.  Worse, the relationship becomes painful....  (From The Frying Pan To The Jacuzzi, 1,2.)

This is a relationship issue that we do not want to skip over.

CHECK OUT THE DISCUSSION ON EITHER HUBPAGES OR ON FACEBOOK!/pages/From-The-Frying-Pan-To-The-Jacuzzi/130769310284553 

Thanks for reading and adding to the discussion