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Not Married? Your Fault!
Aired June 27, 2012 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
DR. DREW PINSKY, HOST: Here we go.
Are you a woman over 30 and still single? My first guest says it`s because, well, you`re shallow, crazy, selfish, dishonest and she`s got worse things to say. She`s here defending her controversial book and taking your calls.
And later, does your spouse abuse you emotionally and otherwise? HLN anchor Christi Paul says she lived that nightmare and escaped. She wrote a book about it, recorded a song about it. Now, she`s here telling you how to deal with it.
Let`s get started.
PINSKY: It is what we like to call here our "Sex and Relationships Wednesday". First, we`ve got a little warning: tonight`s show may involve some adult language so children maybe perhaps ought to leave the room right now.
So, let`s start off here with a note, lots of women, single women, say they want a guy to so-called put a ring on it. But the author of a new book says, if you`re 30 and still haven`t found Mr. Right, it`s not their fault, it`s your fault, because -- well, you`re a bitch, a slut or just plain crazy. That`s what the book says, right?
Tracy McMillan is the author of "Why You`re Not Married Yet." also Steve Santagati, an author and president of Bad Boys Finish First Inc.
All right. Now, Tracy, you`ve been married three times, right? I always get worried when somebody`s giving advice who`s been married multiple times.
TRACY MCMILLAN, AUTHOR, "WHY YOU`RE NOT MARRIED YET": That`s right.
PINSKY: So, what would you say to somebody who`s taking issue with that from the onset?
MCMILLAN: I think the thing is, is that I`ve made all the mistakes that I`m writing about in this book. So I think I speak from experience, saying, you know, they say you learn a lot from your successes but you learn even more from your failures? That`s me.
PINSKY: And, Steve, what do you think about what she wrote about?
STEVE SANTAGATI, AUTHOR, "THE MANUAL": I think the idea of marriage is like a bad song, Tracy. It`s like the more you hear it, the might start actually liking it. This whole concept that we have to get married to be happy is ridiculous.
MCMILLAN: No, no, no, we don`t. But most women want to get married eventually.
SANTAGATI: Because they heard that stupid song.
MCMILLAN: No, no.
SANTAGATI: Society, religious institutions, government, your friends, your neighbors.
MCMILLAN: No, no.
SANTAGATI: Even you said in your article -- I read your article cover to cover, if you will.
MCMILLAN: All 1,500 words. Yes.
SANTAGATI: All 1,500 words -- and you said specifically that women want to get married because they see their friends, because they`re the bridesmaid in a wedding. This is a time for women to wake up. It`s a sexual revolution happening, and it`s derogatory in my opinion towards women when you say, the only way to be validated is if some man does that for you.
MCMILLAN: That`s not what I`m saying.
PINSKY: What are you say something?
MCMILLAN: I`m saying I think most women don`t want to get to their deathbed holding the hand of their new boyfriend. I think --
SANTAGATI: Why not? If he loves you, what makes a difference?
MCMILLAN: They want equity in their lives.
SANTAGATI: You mean financial equity?
PINSKY: Relationship equity.
SANTAGATI: Yes. Emotional, they want to build family and build structures of society. There`s nothing wrong with marriage.
This could just as easily be called, you know, why you`re not in a relationship like you go shopping for furniture. It does not have to be about marriage. This is really about building long-term relationships. Most women want that.
And that`s a wonderful thing. There`s no way you`re going to --
PINSKY: In my experience, Tracy, most people can`t do that because they`ve got bad pickers and they have bad models for relationships. They had problems in their childhood, problems in their families of origin, abandoning fathers, drug addiction.
MCMILLAN: Yes, that`s like me.
PINSKY: Broken families. I read about you. I know that`s about you.
So, when I read your book, I thought, well, this is just about people who have emotional issues -- all women who have those issues like Tracy had, I guess. I don`t know if you`ve had treatment or something.
MCMILLAN: Oh, I`ve gone to tons and tons of therapy.
PINSKY: So you`ve had treatment and now you`re attracted to --
MCMILLAN: I`m working on it.
PINSKY: But you`re attracted to and by different kinds of guys now.
MCMILLAN: Well, I was actually -- I knew who had pick. The problem was I would get in a relationship with a really good guy and go, what doesn`t this feel right? What`s missing? Something`s missing.
MCMILLAN: Then I would leave.
PINSKY: You need drama, or if he`s going to abandon you, he`s good if he`s going stay with you, there`s something wrong with him.
MCMILLAN: I take issue with the idea I`m saying it`s your fault. I`m not saying that. I`m saying it`s your responsibility.
PINSKY: OK. Let`s look at the list of traits that Tracy says single women have. They include -- I think this is by chapter, right? You`re a bitch, you`re shallow, you`re a slut, you`re crazy, you`re selfish, you`re a mess, you hate yourself, you`re liar, you`re a dude, you`re Godless.
PINSKY: Now, the one -- when I heard people -- Steve is shaking his head.
SANTAGATI: Because all of those things can be good if you perceive them a certain way.
PINSKY: I think -- like how?
SANTAGATI: Well, for example, you`re a dude. It`s great when a girl does sports. If a girl actually gets outside and goes hiking --
MCMILLAN: That`s not what I`m saying.
SANTAGATI: I know, but I`m saying with the way you perceive it.
But the bitch thing -- first of all, I don`t say women are being bitchy, they`re weeding out the weak. Now, negative and being bitter --
PINSKY: What about hostility?
SANTAGATI: You also said, men are afraid of -- can I address this? Men are not afraid of bitch -- of bitter -- of angry women. We just don`t want to deal with it. Why would you? I don`t want to buy an angry dog, never mind marry an angry girl.
MCMILLAN: That`s what I`m saying, too. I don`t want to deal with an angry man.
SANTAGATI: We`re not afraid of you.
PINSKY: OK. Let`s take calls.
Veronica in Texas -- Veronica, you got something for us?
VERONICA, CALLER FROM TEXAS: Yes, Dr. Drew. Hi. How are you?
PINSKY: We`re good.
VERONICA: Tracy, don`t you think women subconsciously pick the same man over and over again?
MCMILLAN: Sometimes, yes. I think you keep repeating your mistakes until you hit some kind of bottom and then decide to have a new experience.
PINSKY: And that, again, are built on what some people conceptualize as love of maps from our family of origin. It`s simply the case of how humans work that our parental relationships sort of set the model and wiring for what we fit with.
We`re like a key in a lock in our adult life. If things are particularly terrorizing in childhood, magically, that gets converted into attraction and often intense attraction. And so, that`s what I call a broken picker, you pick the wrong types of guys over and over.
Karen in New York, what do you have?
KAREN, CALLER FROM NEW YORK: Yes, Dr. Drew. So, what do you tell women who spent their fabulous youth in relationships that didn`t work out and we`re in the invisible 50-plus age bracket where men our age are looking for women in their 20s and 30s. I mean, we can`t even get our foot in the door, forget about marriage.
PINSKY: Well, Steve, you seem to have an answer for that.
SANTAGATI: Do the same thing guys are doing. Just do what you want to do.
Also, don`t discredit the fact you had a great youth, having great sex and great relationships with all these guys. Just go younger.
There`s a lot of guys, especially younger guys, like my friend Jake, who wants to date older women. They just do.
That`s what I wanted to do when I was 19, 20.
PINSKY: Karen, what happened? Why did you end up alone?
KAREN: I don`t know.
SANTAGATI: What town? Where is she living?
KAREN: What this man is saying about dating younger men, I don`t really agree with that either, because I think a lot of men want to date older women just for sex, you know? I want a relationship along with the sex. I don`t want just sex in my 50s, 60s or 70s.
PINSKY: What do you think, Tracy?
MCMILLAN: Well, I kind of feel like maybe some of it is location, but I actually feel that when you are ready to be in a relationship, the relationship will come to you. I really believe that.
SANTAGATI: Tracy, also, don`t you guys think it has a lot to do with location? If you`re in New York City and the competition is high, you basically want to hunt at the zoo. You want to put yourself in a place where the potential for a mate is in your favor.
PINSKY: Strangely, I think Tracy just agreed with you. I saw a smirk on her face.
SANTAGATI: It`s true. Hunt at the zoo.
MCMILLAN: You know -- well, I think there`s a little something to that. I think hunting at the zoo is a funny idea.
PINSKY: But one of the things that people have shown proximity is the most important indicator of whether you`re going to be in a relationship. But this day with the Internet, proximity is sort of electronically mediated.
SANTAGATI: The Internet and Facebook and all this stuff, something I call techno temptation, that`s a complete lie. It`s a delusion that you can have a relationship with somebody, oh, they live in Hawaii, well, she`s cute. I`m just clicking on the Internet. Well, she lives in Alabama. Maybe I can go down there. Maybe this girl in --
PINSKY: So, it`s not real proximity.
SANTAGATI: It`s not. No, it`s a false sense of relationship potential.
PINSKY: OK. Next up, Tracy says casual sex for ladies is like recreational heroin. She says yes and she will tell you why sex with a single woman is just heroin. You shouldn`t taste it, after the break.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Have you ever of seen any of those traits in the women you`ve dated?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Uh --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He sees them in me because I`m crazy for sure.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`m a mess sometimes, I`m a dude.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Talking about me.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, you. Of course.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIPS)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So what do you look for in a girlfriend?
UNIDENTIFIED BOY: Pretty much the prettiness.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Their prettiness?
UNIDENTIFIED BOY: Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I`m right, see?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Most men aren`t their own people, you know? Not until they`re at least on their 40s and by then, they only want to date girls in their 20s. I sound bitter.
(END VIDEO CLIPS)
PINSKY: Yes, she does sound better. That was from a YouTube video called kid-instructed criticism, single women who want to marry are getting a tough dose of tough love, from a new book calling them selfish and crazy. And, of course, those are two of just the softer adjectives Tracy is using.
And with me is the author, Tracy McMillan. The book is "Why You`re Not Married Yet." Steve Santagati is the author of "The Manual."
I`m watching the dynamic develop between you guys here on the studio.
And, Tracy, secretly, I think Steve is one of the guys you would have gone for back in the day.
PINSKY: Yes, I see it on your face.
MCMILLAN: No, no, no. I would never date Steve, even though I`m sure you`re really sweet.
SANTAGATI: Sweet is not word I`d use.
MCMILLAN: Or whatever, I`m sure you`re wonderful person. But I would not have dated Steve. He`s way too like slick for me.
SANTAGATI: You don`t even know what I`m like. We`ve just met.
MCMILLAN: No, I`m looking at your outfit. You have tattoos. I never dated guys with tattoos.
PINSKY: Enough. This isn`t a dating show.
I`m just saying I see it on your face. I`m just saying.
But some of the -- could you put the list back up of all the things that Tracy is calling women in her book chapter by chapter.
One of the things that I think stood out and I think stands out for other women, you`re shallow, you`re a slut, you`re crazy.
But "you`re a dude" jumps out at people --
PINSKY: -- because, you know, that`s a double-edged sword.
PINSKY: We want women to have masculine characteristics and embrace those but they have to understand what they`re doing.
MCMILLAN: Exactly. I think it`s great to be balanced. You want masculine understand energy. We just put such a premium on it, that we develop all of this masculine energy at the expense of developing a feminine side.
PINSKY: So rather than valuing what it is in your instincts are as a woman, you`re saying you`ve got to measure up to a 19 year old male. That`s the goal. That`s the idea.
MCMILLAN: Well, it`s about -- you got to go, hunt it down and kill it. And it doesn`t work. Like if you`re a woman and you`re approaching relationships like, I`m going to walk into a party, see which guy I want, go over there and position myself and make it happen, text him, do all this stuff -- it doesn`t work.
I know very few women who are married to that guy.
PINSKY: OK. But it`s OK with us if they do that, isn`t it, Steve?
SANTAGATI: Yes. We always -- women I think --
PINSKY: We`re lazy.
SANTAGATI: We`re not lazy.
PINSKY: Rather not do the work.
SANTAGATI: No, it`s not about -- I`m going to disagree with you. I think it`s about men are afraid of rejection and guys especially these days where wimpier and wimpier. They`re texting asking for date. They don`t want to deal with rejection.
The fact of the matter is women can be proactive. The rules have changed and nature has stayed the same.
PINSKY: Human nature.
SANTAGATI: Yes. Thank you. Women want an alpha male. That`s it. If you go out --
MCMILLAN: That`s not true.
SANTAGATI: I disagree with you unequivocally across the board.
MCMILLAN: All right.
SANTAGATI: Our bio-behavioral imperatives stipulate without a shadow of a doubt --
PINSKY: They may want that for the genes for your DNA, but maybe not for the resources and nesting. I`m just saying.
Let`s take a call.
Stela in Texas -- Stela.
STELA, CALLER FROM TEXAS: Hi. Yes, Dr. Drew, I --
STELA: -- responded to listening to the information I was given. I am a divorced woman, and I haven`t gotten married. I`ve been married twice. After my second marriage, I decided to stay single for quite a few reasons.
One, I need to get hold of myself and find out where I was at. Not because I felt like I needed someone to come and fill my area.
The other thing is I had kids. My kids I don`t want to go through any kind of --
PINSKY: But, Stela, it sounds like you are so beaten up by the choices you`ve made that you`ve lost faith in marriage.
STELA: I don`t think so. No, I don`t think so.
PINSKY: I love marriage. It surprises me how great it`s been.
STELA: Here`s one of my situations. I had a young boy who was 17 years old who lived next door to me when I was in my early 30s and his dad was single. His dad was out searching for women and I helped him do his homework one night and asked him if his dad could help him do his homework.
He says, oh, no. My dad is looking for girls. He`s checking (INAUDIBLE). He doesn`t know anything about me. Doesn`t know anything about me going to school. You know? And I was, like, wow.
I ended up going through a divorce and said, I will never put my kids through that, if anything that happened to me like this.
PINSKY: But, Steve, you`re shaking your head. Let me cast the question toward you, which is, there`s a price on our families and our kids if we make bad choices and don`t sustain healthy marriages. Do you agree?
SANTAGATI: I think we need -- I think people don`t think it through. They have kids and they have marriage because that`s the package deal. That`s what we`re sold to them. That`s what you`re supposed to do.
But you can make up -- this is your life. We`re all born free. You do whatever the hell you want to do.
PINSKY: But if you have kids there`s a certain way you need to conduct yourself for health for the kids.
SANTAGATI: Dr. Drew, I have dated women several times in my life and had serious monogamous relationships with them and they had children. People, we`re resilient. We`re a lot tougher. We don`t need to coddle everybody.
Just date who you want to date, have some discretion and go for it.
PINSKY: Tracy, you must have been one of the children where families dissolved and parents did what they wanted. How did that feel?
MCMILLAN: I`ve been there. It`s difficult. I don`t think it`s fair --
PINSKY: It`s not difficult, it`s painful. It`s painful.
PINSKY: And most kids won`t allow themselves to go back and think about how painful that was.
MCMILLAN: Yes, I agree.
SANTAGATI: You came from a divorced household?
MCMILLAN: I came from a completely nuclear household.
SANTAGATI: Like the nuclear explosion or the nuclear family.
MCMILLAN: Like my dad was in prison for 30 years and I was a foster child. So, I was like moving all over.
And that`s part of -- that`s the biggest part of why I`ve been married three times. But I do think that we can have new experiences. But it`s just really challenging.
PINSKY: Well, let`s talk about why -- I`ve teased this before the break -- why you say casual sex for a single woman is like heroin.
MCMILLAN: Yes. Casual sex is problematic. I mean, I just am going off, like, what dozens and hundreds of women have told me over the years.
PINSKY: What have they told you?
MCMILLAN: What they`ve told you -- this is how I look at it, casual sex is like recreational heroin. It doesn`t stay recreational for long, you know?
PINSKY: You get addicted to it.
MCMILLAN: Well, the next thing you know you`re bonded to that guy. Yes, we`re friends with benefits for three weeks, then the drunk dialing begins.
PINSKY: We`re going to talk about the bonding and oxytocin and the fact that Tracy says single women have turned their smartphones into semiautomatic weapons that are killing their relationships. The drunk texting that you`re talking about.
Find out what she means when she comes back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you ever see any of those traits in the women you dated?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Possibly.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Liar?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, they`re a mess.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Have you seen any of those in the women you`ve dated?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. Number eight, a liar. I think they are a mess. They are crazy.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PINSKY: It`s "Sex and Relationship Wednesday".
And I`m back with Steve Santagati and author Tracy McMillan, who insists single women are their own worst enemies when it comes to getting the relationship they want.
Now, Tracy, before the break, we were talking about casual sex and friends with benefits. I always tell people, it looks great on paper just like communism looks good on paper. It doesn`t work with humans.
Steve, you want to react to that, the fact that she said, as soon the bonding develops, the drunk dialing ensues.
SANTAGATI: It depends. First of all, I`ve had sex on the first date and stayed with them for a long time. It`s thrown out right there.
Oxytocin is very powerful, but if you don`t have sex like every single day for like weeks on end, it`s not going to really affect a woman as far as -- hold on.
MCMILLAN: That`s not true.
SANTAGATI: Let me tell you something else, too -- how do you know if you don`t want to be with someone if you`re not having sex with them.
MCMILLAN: I`m not saying be a virgin. I`m saying, be careful who you start having sex with, because women, will get hooked on you. Don`t tell me you haven`t had casual sex with a woman who hasn`t been like, Steve, Steve.
SANTAGATI: When it comes to sex, let`s face it, guys, this is how it works: men just need a place, women need an excuse. I give you the excuse, any smart guy --
MCMILLAN: I disagree.
SANTAGATI: Well, you --
MCMILLAN: I`m listening to these women`s conversations, like I`m having open discussions with women. And what they`re not telling you is that they`re experiencing the feeling of being in love and you are just having sex.
PINSKY: That`s right. That is exactly right. That is the difference.
Tracy, tell me about the semi-automatic weapon, the cell phone.
MCMILLAN: Well, I mean, the thing is, like, with technology today, you can destroy a relationship in one second. You know? It`s like you can start sending all these text messages, you can -- I mean, I know people who have broken up with people on voice mail and wanted to take it back and it`s too late.
PINSKY: Interesting. Demitri in Louisiana. You got a question for us? A comment?
DEMITRI, CALLER FROM LOUISIANA: Well, a little bit of both. I was listening and I also agreed. You don`t know what you`re getting until you have sex with a person. Nothing is worse than dating someone and getting to that point and you were like, hey, that`s whack.
DEMITRI: But women are emotional. We have sex and we get emotionally involved.
MCMILLAN: Yes, we do.
DEMITRI: If it`s good sex.
PINSKY: Yes. People oversimplify it with the notion of oxytocin. That comes out from rodent research. We`re not rodents we`re much more complicated.
But the fact is, that oxytocin is inhabited under the influence of testosterone. So, we actually don`t respond to that bonding hormone. Women under the influence of estrogen, it` very powerful. But there`s all kinds of other wire --
MCMILLAN: Some women have more of it than others. I know women in the course of a really, really good conversation, plus a make-out session, it`s on for them.
MCMILLAN: You think that`s weird, but --
SANTAGATI: I didn`t say it was weird.
MCMILLAN: Where would people be if women did not get bonded?
SANTAGATI: Well, the population would be a lot lower. That`s for starters.
Listen, here`s the thing. The issue is, though, I take with this is women are just as bad as we are, as men are.
MCMILLAN: That`s right.
PINSKY: Of course they are.
SANTAGATI: You`re just as sexual, you`re just as conniving, you`re just as manipulative. You want different things.
PINSKY: Different motivational priorities.
SANTAGATI: The fact of the matter is, what are we asking about today? The women that aren`t married, how do they get married? From my point of view personally is, do you even want marriage? Is this something that was just sold to you like that song that kept applying over and over in brides` magazines, romantic comedies, all this stupid stuff --
PINSKY: Hold on. Demitri had a question for us about her relationship in that regard.
Demitri, what was that?
DEMITRI: It`s the fact that I`m 41, I`ve been dating the same guy off of and on for 20 years.
DEMITRI: For the last two years, we have been exclusive, and my children have come to know him, which they`ve known him, but it`s to the point where they`re saying, OK, so are you, when and if are y`all getting married?
PINSKY: So, Demitri let me ask Steve`s question and say, what would marriage do for this relationship? Why do you want it?
DEMITRI: It would solidify everything we have going because right now you`re in one place and I`m in another.
PINSKY: Let me tell you something.
DEMITRI: He lives in one house and I live in another. It would bring us together and I`m just curious what`s the holdup for him, because if you can enjoy the food and if you can enjoy the sex and you can also act like you enjoy the family lifestyle, what`s wrong with asking me the question?
PINSKY: I think he enjoyed the first two more than the third. I think that`s what it boils down to.
PINSKY: And with the contract of marriage comes a responsibilities that he may not be up for. And that`s not fair to you. I`m just saying.
DEMITRI: He`s been married before and I`ve never so I thought maybe it was me feeling, I`ve never been married, I`ve never been married. And my mother, my grandmother, my sister, they died alone.
PINSKY: Ooh, interesting.
DEMITRI: I don`t want to die alone.
SANTAGATI: But, Demitri, marriage is no security.
DEMITRI: Steve, you`ve never been married. When you get up in front of God and everybody and you declare you`re going to stay -- have you been married?
SANTAGATI: No, I would never get married.
PINSKY: It feels different.
SANTAGATI: For you. But you`re an anomaly.
MCMILLAN: Do you rent or are homeowner?
SANTAGATI: Is this a real estate show?
MCMILLAN: No. But I really want to say, like it`s the same difference between like OK, this -- I see this --
PINSKY: Renting and home owning.
PINSKY: All right. Let`s take one more last call.
Sarah in Massachusetts -- Sarah.
SARAH, CALLER FROM MASSACHUSETTS: Hi, Dr. Drew.
PINSKY: Hi, Sarah. Go ahead.
SARAH: Well, basically, my story is, I was married at -- I think I was 20, because I wasn`t allowed to drink at my own reception. But that marriage was basically, if you want to live with him, you have to marry him. I had those kinds of parents. That`s why I married him.
It lasted about a year and that was it. But what I had written in about is that I think that people -- women in their 30s and guys could also be included in this as well, we don`t repress things anymore, like we used to, like my parents` generation and even the generation before that.
PINSKY: OK, so you don`t force things. Steve is shaking his head vigorously. So, there aren`t the same kind of rigid social standards.
SANTAGATI: It`s a sign of positivity.
PINSKY: I`m not so sure. How`s society going so far, Steve, ever looking better now? I`m just saying.
I`m just saying, our kids are suffering because our families aren`t healthy.
SANTAGATI: That is true. But maybe people shouldn`t be having children unless they have some sort of education or license --
PINSKY: Maybe we should have breeders or non-breeders.
SANTAGATI: I don`t know about that. That`s a little George Orwell.
PINSKY: Well, that`s what you`re suggesting.
PINSKY: I hope this will go on.
Tracy, thank you.
Steve, thank you.
I`ve got to go to break.
HLN anchor Christi Paul tells us why love isn`t supposed to hurt. Her advice to women trying to end unhealthy relationship. That is after the break.
PINSKY: Welcome back.
Now, straight ahead, I`m speaking to HLN anchor Christi Paul. She said she suffered years of emotional abuse. She says she is a survivor and you could be, too, if you`re in something like that.
And later, I`m going to take your calls on whatever is on your mind.
PINSKY: "Live Better Now." HLN wants to help you to live a healthier life, which naturally includes having a healthy relationship. Love isn`t supposed to hurt is the title of HLN anchor Christi Paul`s new book.
Christi says she was in an emotionally abusive relationship with her ex-husband. And Christi is here. We spoke with her a few months ago in Los Angeles. And Christi, at that time, you told me how you had struggled to end that relationship. Take a look.
CHRISTI PAUL, HLN ANCHOR: I had already moved to Boise (ph) with him. I had already gotten a job there, I`d settled into that. So, when you`re - - I was in a new place with him where I didn`t have any other support. And I did love him. I mean, I`ll admit I loved him. There were good things about this man.
Still, I`m sure there are good things about this man. And when somebody is verbally abusive to you, you cling to that goodness. You know, when you see those glimpses of good, I think, you cling to it not only because it reminds you that there`s a good person in there, because then you also don`t have to face the fact that maybe I didn`t make the best decision here.
And sometimes, it`s hard to reconcile that in yourself as well.
PINSKY: And every woman thinks they`re going to change that guy.
PAUL: And that was a big part of it. The first time -- the big moment -- first of all, when we were on our honeymoon, we got in a fight and he slept on the couch. That`s never a good sign. One night.
And then about two months after we got married, he came home and he had too much to drink and he was screaming at me and threw his ring at me and said he never wanted to see me again, the verbal assaults were just -- here`s this person that supposed to love you more than anything and you`re being attacked in way you`ve never been attacked before.
And initially, you`re so stunned you don`t know how to react to it. So, first you plead, what`s wrong? What do you mean? Yes, I love you. And he said something that struck me. He said, you`re just like the rest of them. And that indicated to me that this was not about me. This was about him.
And eventually, because you love them, I did the whole. I can fix this. I can prove to him that love, you know, lasts. And I`m not going to leave, and that becomes part of your motivation.
PINSKY: At what point did you realize he was an alcoholic, and once you did, were you still trying to fix that?
PAUL: Yes. I mean, it was two years in. I called his parents and said, I`m ready to go. I can`t do it anymore. And, that`s the moment where you realize you don`t have control, and that`s what`s so frightening. I couldn`t make him less angry. I couldn`t make him stop lying. I couldn`t make him drink less.
He had to be able to do that. And it feels like such a losing battle. And that`s when hopelessness really sets in, because you just feel like there`s nothing you can do. But, again, I was still married to him, and he stepped up. We went to counseling together. It got better for a year.
PINSKY: What your husband do is actually -- ex-husband inexcusable. There`s no -- I mean, I can`t understand why somebody didn`t. I`m angry with the doctors who are dealing with you, guys, that nobody treated his alcoholism. Poor guy never got -- this is all alcoholism. He came as abusive when he was drinking.
PINSKY: He was a different person when he drank. This is classic alcoholism and classic co-dependency --
PAUL: Very -- oh, absolutely. I own that, yes.
PINSKY: And no Al-Anon, no AA, nothing gets better. Counseling does not treat these things. It helps you get out of relationship which you did.
PAUL: Which it did for me. It did for me, because as I said, you know, eventually, you realize you can`t fix this. And in the end, part of the big reason I left, we had this catalyst (ph). It was a $200 bar bill, and he was saying, no, I wasn`t drinking. Well, hat was telling to me was I gave him three chances to come clean with me.
This is what I did. And at that point I think, when you`re in it, because you`re being told horrible names and you`re selfish and you`re this and that, that worthlessness does start to really settle into your bones. And then, what makes is worse is that you don`t leave. And I didn`t leave because I was married.
I didn`t think I had a choice. And every time it happened, that just compounded the worthlessness because you think, I`m a smart woman. I can take care of myself. Why am I doing this?
PINSKY: HLN asked the attorney for Christi`s former husband for a response. They have no comment. Christi, she`s here with us now. And Christi, what message would you have for women out there that may be caught in this cycle of domestic violence?
PAUL: Well, I think it`s really important that people recognize that it`s not OK. And when you`re in it, it`s hard for you to separate yourself from -- you know on an innate level that it`s not OK.
But you start to convince yourself, maybe I`m perpetuating it, maybe I did something before in my life and now I`m getting what I deserve, because you`re so used to hearing, you know, words that are so hateful towards you from somebody that is supposed to love you. But the whole crux of this is, it`s not OK what happened to you, but it`s not OK that you let it destroy you either. And that much I finally learned.
PINSKY: And it`s really hard for women that are caught in this to sort of hit bottom. It`s almost easier to be hit bottom with a drug, because you get so caught up in feeling responsible for this and so often as the case women take responsibility for this or they may have had relationships earlier in their life that confirmed this sort of same sense of how a relationship is supposed to go.
How do we wake people from that slumber that this isn`t going to get better?
PAUL: Well, I think you know on some level after -- I knew I had exhausted all my resources to fix it. We had been to counseling. I had gotten help from his parents. I had tried it on my own. I had done everything I could do. It was out of my control at that point.
And when you finally recognize, look, I`m with somebody who may have very good traits, but at the end of the day, if they can`t deal with you, if they`re not healthy enough to deal with conflict in a respectful and dignified way, they`re just not healthy enough to be in your life. And I finally realized I was walking around like a zombie, Dr. Drew.
PINSKY: Oh, I can imagine.
PAUL: I was walking around not letting myself feel anything. And something in me just said, this is not what you are meant for. And I hope people look at this book and recognize, you were not born to be abused.
PINSKY: Christi, that`s very vivid, because so many people are numbed like that by the experience there. And you`re right. You walk around like a zombie and you`re just in it. Let`s take a couple of calls. We`ve got Lissette in Florida. Lisette, what`s your story?
LISSETTE, FLORIDA: Hi, Dr. Drew.
PINSKY: Hi, Lissette.
LISSETTE: Everything that Christi is saying is like she`s talking about my life, minus the alcoholism. The abuse has been verbal from day one, and he has been in my life for a very long time. We got back together five years ago, and he promised me the stars, the moon, everything, marriage, children.
And a year into it, he changed his mind, and for four-and-a half years, I have been struggling, thinking I was going to change his mind, thinking that love was going to prevail. And just this week, he`s kicked me out. I gave up my life, which he said was nothing before. I had a great job, had friends, I was healthy.
I was on my way to buying property for myself, supporting myself, taking care of me as a human being, as a woman. And, I gave up all of that, and he said it was nothing. He said that wasn`t a sacrifice. He said that he -- that I, you know, kept him from having a real relationship, you know? And this has been going on since we were kids.
PINSKY: OK. Lissette, Lissette, we`re going to take a quick break. That is a heartbreaking story. And again, your story is so illustrative of how your world shrinks in upon you. Again, it`s like an addiction. You lose things all along the way and then it shrinks down to just him. And now, what do you do when you got nothing?
And Christi is going to tell you what to do. Now, we`re going to go to break, and on the way out, we`re going to listen to Christi Paul`s new song about abuse. It is titled "Wake Up In It." The song is available on iTunes this Friday. Stay with us.
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PINSKY: I am back with HLN anchor, Christi Paul. Her new book "Love Isn`t Supposed to Hurt" is in stores now. She chronicled surviving an abusive relationship. Before we went to break, we were talking to Lissette. She shared a really just a devastating story about a relationship she`s been in sounds like most of your adult life.
And Lissette, am I right that you`re leaving -- did I hear you saying you`re leaving? And is this your husband -- I didn`t quite hear that part either. You`re breaking up now, is that correct?
LISSETTE: Correct. He called it quits yet again, and we never married. He took that promise back. I have a wedding dress hanging in my closet for four years.
PINSKY: OK. That`s the least of the things he`s stolen from you. Christi, where does Lissette go? And give her some words of support because I think she`s doing exactly the right thing.
PAUL: Oh, yes. First of all, the fact that he`s telling you to leave take it as a blessing. Secondly, don`t be afraid of getting counseling. I`m a huge advocate of finding a good counselor who can help you walk through things and see them more clearly, because when you`re in it, you`ve absorbed his hateful words for long enough.
Don`t let him define who you are. Whenever that thought comes into your head -- because this is what happened to me. I would hear his voice in my head berating me. And I had to get to the point where I could identify, this isn`t me talking, this is him talking. This is him telling me that I`m not enough and that I`m not worth it.
When you hear that happening in your head, shut it of and remember who you were before. You were a woman who could take care of yourself, a woman who could support yourself, a woman who knew who she was. You are still that person.
PINSKY: That is great advice, Christi. And I would say to Lissette also, Christi is absolutely right. This is a blessing. Once someone, a woman gets to the point that you`re in, when she does come initially for help, the focus of help is getting you out. That is the first focus of the circumstances, getting you out of the circumstance.
Now, that you`re out, you can do exactly what Christi says and get further psychological/psychiatric help for yourself. Thank you for that call. And I`ve got Kim in Ohio -- Kim.
KIM, OHIO: Hi, Dr. Drew.
PINSKY: Hi, Kim.
KIM: Thanks for taking my call. I was the RN that was in the 23-year marriage to a sociopath (INAUDIBLE) to a couple weeks ago.
KIM: Yes. And you thought my mom or dad or people in my family were addicts or something because I was so co-dependent. But, when Latoya Jackson was on the next night, I realized I was raised in a religiously conservative Protestant upbringing, believed the husband was the head of the household, the wife was the helpmate or the second in command.
And I was brought up to believe that divorce is a sin. OK? And it was just almost worse than murder. You know, God would forgive murder but not divorce.
PINSKY: So, let me sort of add up what you`re saying. You got into a situation that you couldn`t get out of because of your belief system.
PINSKY: So one bad choice led to a jail sentence, basically.
KIM: Well, basically, yes. And I thought -- I wanted to get out like 12 years before that 23 years was up, but I felt like would be such a disappointment to my father, because I was always looking for his approval.
PINSKY: Well, let me stop you, Kim, and bring Christi into this conversation, because I know your relationship with your family, Christi, is very important to you and that was some of what led you not to listen to your instincts, was it not?
PAUL: Well, it wasn`t so much my family. I was, I mean, I was concerned about upsetting my family, and I really I believed the same way you did, Kim. I believed that marriage is marriage. And I made this decision and I have to live with it and that`s just the way it is. But the fact of the matter is, if you`re being abused in any way, he`s already violating that marriage.
PAUL: And at the end of the day -- and I`ll say it again, you were not born to be abused.
KIM: I appreciate that.
PAUL: And you`ve got to get your value back.
PAUL: And it`s -- when you`re in it, I get it. You feel like, I can`t leave. I don`t have a choice. But guess what, you do, because I just don`t believe that God put you on this earth with that.
KIM: And I agree, and I`ve been out of it for ten years, and my ex- husband has since died. But when I told my dad that I was getting a divorce, I thought, oh, gosh, the wrath of God. And my dad said, thank God.
PINSKY: The sin is women being abused. That`s the sin, guys.
KIM: Yes. And he said --
KIM: -- I knew you were miserable. And I said, why didn`t you talk to me? And he said, I didn`t feel it was my place.
PINSKY: I don`t know if you guys -- if you have kids, Kim, but you know, as a parent, you kind of feel like you don`t want to interfere when an adult child makes a big choice. You`ve got to stand back and let things happen and be supportive as they do. I can imagine what your dad was feeling. It was very conflicted.
Oh, ladies, thank you. Thank you for those stories, Lissette and Kim. I appreciate it. And Christi, of course, thank you for sharing your story with us. We appreciate it seeing you. I know you`re here on HLN with us, and we`ll welcome you back to this show soon, no doubt.
PAUL: Oh, thank you.
PINSKY: And good luck with the song and the book. And more of your calls after the break.
PINSKY: It is time for your calls and questions about just about anything. I`m going to go right out now to Caroline in Idaho -- Caroline.
CAROLINE, IDAHO: Hi, Dr. Drew.
PINSKY: Hi, Caroline.
CAROLINE: I appreciate you taking my call.
CAROLINE: I really love your show. I think you go above and beyond.
PINSKY: Thank you.
CAROLINE: My question is about love and sex addiction.
CAROLINE: I`m curious if you think it`s similar to, like, chemical addiction. I would --
PINSKY: It can be. Let me just say, I`ll hear what your story in just a second. But when you really see, particularly, sex addiction, when people are really going down that path, it`s not what you think. It`s stunning. And these people have horrible consequences, are dismayed and distressed that they`ve lost control over this behavior, completely, and have horrible consequences.
And the sane parts of the brain are firing off going addiction. It`s a little less -- quite a bit less biologically based and has some more trauma and psychological elements to it. Love addiction I think more of as a construct than a real addiction. It`s a way of understanding why people have such difficulty with these idealizations they get so attached to. What happened in your situation?
CAROLINE: I think that I`d had multiple affairs, and I never really understood my behavior because I really do love my husband. And, I`ve actually come forth and I just decided I had to be honest and straightforward if I really wanted to get myself right and my relationship right. And I did.
PINSKY: How did your husband react?
CAROLINE: he was very upset.
PINSKY: I bet.
CAROLINE: But he`s also struggled. I mean, he struggled with pornography, so I think we`re both co-dependent on each other.
PINSKY: And both sex addicts a little bit. Again, that construct of sexual compulsion/sexual addiction. Have you had treatment together, either of you?
CAROLINE: Well, he`s focusing on his recovery. I`m trying to focus on my recovery.
PINSKY: Good. Good.
CAROLINE: I am seeing a psychologist, but, you know, the difference I was seeing with, like, alcoholism versus, you know, love addiction is it gets fuzzy because, you know, with alcohol you just quit drinking.
PINSKY: Right. It`s fuzzy the way an eating disorder is fuzzy. You have to -- you know, it`s a disease, a disorder, but you still have to eat. And love is still a normal part of the human experience.
PINSKY: Just when it becomes so powerful, and you know, you lose control over it that it`s a problem. I would suggest also that -- you know, what you guys have going on is like all these conditions sort of light and oftentimes looking at the relationship, too, is very important. So, getting a couples therapist that`s really good and qualified to take a look at you guys could hasten this process quite a bit.
Suzanna, Suzanna in California -- Suzanna.
SUZANNA, CALIFORNIA: Hi, Dr. Drew.
SUZANNA: Thank you. I love your show.
PINSKY: Thank you.
SUZANNA: I just have a question. You know, I`m 24 years old and I`ve had a relationship with my boyfriend for almost seven years on and off.
SUZANNA: And I have a very difficult time trusting him, and he recently gave me an engagement ring.
SUZANNA: And I have a little bit of doubt that he`s ready to fully commit. We have two children together.
PINSKY: Oh, God, why do people do that? Why do you guys -- I mean, it`s like, having kids, well, hat`s just -- but marriage, that`s a commitment. You have two kids already. Hey, dad! He`s dad. It`s time for him to shape up and behave like one, Suzanna. Come on now. Of course, you have doubt.
He`s been mistreating you, and he`s left you with two kids. Of course, you have doubts. But it`s time for him to step up. It is why you don`t do this in your 20s. People shouldn`t be raising lizards in their 20s. It`s hard for them to have relationships. They mistreat each other.
They`re trying to figure themselves out. He`s 24 now. He`s two kids. He is relinquished his right to screw around. You put down that law (ph), Suzanna, behalf of those kids, OK?
PINSKY: All right, my dear. You do that. Keep the calls coming. More from you all after the break.
PINSKY: Back to the phones, I`ve got Carie in Iowa.
CARIE, IOWA: Hi, Dr. Drew.
PINSKY: Hi, Carie.
CARIE: I`ve been a fan of yours since your days on "Loveline" and MTV.
PINSKY: Thank you. We still do "Loveline" on radio, believe it or not. Check out Lovelineshow.com on your local listings.
CARIE: I will have to do that. The reason I`m calling, though, is I`ve followed you through the years, and I`ve often thought that your comments when it regards to pornography seem to be negative in nature. And I`m wondering what exactly -- if you could clarify that, what your views on pornography are?
PINSKY: It`s mixed, and I dare say I`m confused myself about it a little bit. Let me just take you through a little piece of history.
Back when I was working in a county hospital in the 1980s and we were seeing lots of this condition we called GRID, gay-related (INAUDIBLE) that you now know as AIDS, we would encourage couples to use pornography as a tool to help them not have the kind of contact that might transmit this thing that we didn`t fully understand.
Certainly, it`s something that couples enjoy together, that maybe it prevents men from straying if they`re on the road or something. I mean, who knows what the positive impact has been. My negative concern has been it doesn`t feel like as a society it`s building us up, you know what I`m saying?
And I worry about the people that are being exploited to develop these films. Now, some of them feel good about it, but a lot of them don`t. I`ve treated a lot of them. So, it`s something -- something`s not right with all of this, and that`s my position. It`s not clear.
CARIE: Do you think the people are being honest with you that you`ve treated?
PINSKY: When they`re being exploited. Yes, when they feel terrible and they`re sex addicted and their relationships are a mess, and they`re miserable, yes, to be honest -- the ones that seem to be so happy about their careers, I have my doubts.
I think, eventually, that`s a house of cards that will fall. So, there are people, you know, that other people are using for their own benefit that are really being exploited by this, and that`s a concern, right?
CARIE: Right. Well, thank you for answering my question.
PINSKY: Appreciate the question. William in Florida -- William.
WILLIAM, FLORIDA: Oh, yes. Hi, Dr. Drew. How are you doing?
WILLIAM: Yes. I was watching your show the other day on panic attacks and anxiety attacks.
PINSKY: That`s come up with most of these mixed bag questions. Yes. Go ahead.
WILLIAM: It was late at night, so I figured it was a rerun, but, for some reason, I don`t know which one I`m getting, but it`s when I`m driving.
PINSKY: You get panic --
WILLIAM: It`s to the point where, plenty of times, I have to pull over.
PINSKY: OK. How old are you?
PINSKY: And how long have you had them for?
WILLIAM: It`s been going on now for about three years.
PINSKY: William --
WILLIAM: I used to love to drive everywhere.
PINSKY: Yes. William, I got to -- are you a smoker?
WILLIAM: No, sir.
PINSKY: OK. The reason I ask that is, you`re 51 years old. Panic disorder usually comes on much earlier in life. I mean, usually, not necessarily, but oftentimes. And when it comes on later, I worry about drugs, I worry about alcohol, and I worry about medical problems.
It`s very important you first get medical evaluation. Sometimes, cardiac arrhythmias can present as panic. Have you seen a doctor in recent months?
WILLIAM: Yes, I`ve seen a few doctors about it.
PINSKY: About the panic.
PINSKY: OK. And do you use a lot of alcohol or pills?
WILLIAM: Likely the beer.
WILLIAM: And the only pills I take is what they gave me for it.
PINSKY: OK, but it might be -- I would say let`s take a look at the beer, because sometimes, when you`re getting into alcohol -- because you`re old to be having manifestations of panic, unless, it`s something related to the biology of the circumstance you`re in, either medical or because of substances.
Thank you all for watching. And I will see you next time. A reminder, Mitch Winehouse, Amy Winehouse`s dad, is with me here on Thursday, and Nancy Grace begins right now.