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On today's show, we talked to a mom of a nine year old who's had a lot of life challenges, what can she do to make sure she's OK? We also talked to a young woman who's from a house of divorced parents and she's about to get married and she wants to know what she can do to divorce, proof her future. And finally, we talked to a husband who loves his wife and he loves his job that has him on the road all the time.


What can you do to stay connected while he's always gone? Stay tuned. Hey, what's up, what's up? I'm John, and this is the Dr. John Villone show a show for you about you biu where we are walking alongside one another are trying to figure out the next crooked wobbly step and this thing called life how to be human beings again, how to be in relationships with one another. And we are figuring it out as we go. We talk about everything on this show, anything and everything, no matter what's going on in your heart, in your mind or your family and your relationships in this new year.


Right. We've all been waiting for months and months for it to be twenty, twenty one. Well, here it is. Right. We're here. And I want you to know that so many people are going through the same things you're going through, you're not alone, you're not by yourself. And I want you to give me a shout, right? Give me a shout. Give me a call at one eight four four six nine three thirty to ninety one.


Or you can go to John Delaney dot com slash show and fill out the forms if we can get you on the show here.


And like I said, we talk about everything on the show and this is a special episode. It's coming out I think it's January 6th, right. To special episode because it's my birthday. I am officially twenty eight. It's a big day. I'm not twenty eight is lied to. But here's the thing. A new a new 20-20 resolution we're all going to make together. Twenty, twenty one we're all going to make together. If Facebook has to tell you that it's one of your friend's birthdays, they're not your friend and you don't care if if if an algorithm has to tell you when someone's birthday is, let's just all call it.


You don't care when their birthday is. I don't want a bunch of people thumbs up ing me. Right. Or be like, hey, way to go. Happy birthday, happy birthday.


If like two or three of my people in my life with this, my mom and my wife, my wife remembers most years, my mom occasionally remembers. I've got one or two buddies that never forget. They're awesome. But other than that, let's just call it. And the second thing is, let's not be passive aggressive about our birthdays. Let's walk into where we work. And if you don't want to say anything, don't if you do, just say it.


Hey, everybody, it's my birthday. Like today. It's my birthday show. It's my birthday.


So let's call it out. Let's don't do the passive aggressive like. Oh, it's it's it's my birthday thing. Just passive aggressive birthday people.


Let's be done with that in twenty, twenty one, let's call it. So here we are on the January 6th Happy Birthday show. We're going to talk about the 30 day sugar free challenge. We're gonna do that later. And the reason I wait until January 7th to do that, we can start that tomorrow. The reason I wait till January 7th is because my birthday is January 6th and I want that birthday cake, man. My wife makes the just murder birthday cake and it's awesome.


All right. So let's get into the calls directly. Let's go to Rachel in Houston, Texas, where I was born raised. Rachel, how are we doing?


Hey, Dr. Aloni, doing good. How are you? I'm doing well. Thanks for taking my call. Thank you so, so much for calling. How is Houston you doing OK. It's actually cold, but we're surviving. Wow, very cool, I don't hear that very often. So how can I help Rachel?


So I have a nine year old son with an ex-husband and he's been through a lot. And I just want to know if there is a way, in addition to maybe also seeing a counselor that his dad and I can just check on his mental well-being periodically ourselves. Hmm. That's a great question.


There's a lot to that. So when you say a lot, what does that mean?


OK, so I made a list and I'll try to just run through these really, really quick. OK. After he was born, I had really bad postpartum depression. So I left and he stayed with his dad. He lives with his dad still. When he was three, I remarried when his dad sorry, when he was four and a half, his dad remarried. And his dad's wife is really strict. So much so that if I had to leave him with her, he would cry.


And then when we get to the house, he would stop because they that was not acceptable. And so it was kind of like a red flag. Things seemed better. When he was six. I had his baby brother and his great grandpa passed. When he was eight, his regular grandpa passed from suicide. He doesn't know that. I don't want to tell him. And then now at nine, we just found out we're having another baby. And I feel like that's a lot of stuff.


All right.


So what behaviors is he putting out into the world that makes you think he's not doing OK? Well, that's the thing. There's nothing like he acts like he's totally normal.


Hmm. What is totally normal, man? You. I mean, he's silly and he is super loving, he's a little emotional, like I feel like a lot of boys that I meet that are his age or about the same. I don't know if I can cry a little bit more than I would think the boys do, but I don't know. I'm a girl. All right. And, yeah, I just I just to me, he just seems like he's doing really well.


And I just want to make sure that I'm not missing something.


So I'm going to answer the question and then I'm going to ask you a question behind that question, OK? And one question or the first part of this will be easy. The second part of this won't be OK. Cool call.


The. Reality of it is if he's presenting OK, or I'll just say it this way, a young person, a nine year old, is going to be a stable, generally speaking, as the connection of relationships in their life.


And so if he is tethered into two parents who truly, deeply love him and you've heard me say this over and over, touch him regularly on his face and on his hands and play with him and act like he is important to them and doesn't put the weight of the house on him. Right. Has appropriate boundaries. Then he's going to be OK and he doesn't have abuse and any of his relational situations, his teachers may not be the best, but they're not abusing him.


He's right. He's he's not in places where he is being trampled over. But most of the time, kids are super resilient, especially when they are connected and when they are loved. OK, so that's the reality of it. I would wait to begin projecting microscopes or magnifying glasses on him looking for problems until he presents them.


And kids will not be bashful.


You'll see it OK if he's got or not. If but as you have laid out his life, you've laid it out where he has suffered one trauma after another, after another, after another.


And he's got some what I would would call legacy trauma and take me back to the person in his life who killed himself.


Was that a grandparent? Yes, he only knows that he passed, we didn't tell him how. OK, and what's the story behind that passing? So what did his dad tell him? I don't. I didn't ask, was it his dad's father? Yes, OK, so somewhere along the way, this young boy has. Depression being modeled for him and on both sides. OK. And he's going to that wall, he'll have a reckoning with that at some point, whether that's happening quietly now or in the future doesn't sound like it's happening now.


So it's not something I would lose sleep over, especially if he is in a caring, connected place. And here's where the hard conversation is going to come into play. OK. Yes. He is going to struggle with the fact that his parents are divorced and he is going to struggle with the fact that at some point mom left. Being you OK? Mm hmm. Have you all had that conversation of yours ever talked about that? A lot, he asks all the time, why did you leave and not come back?


Yeah, what do you tell him? So my answer has changed since he's gotten a little bit older. I try to be like as honest as possible with him. So when he was little, I just told him, oh, mom was sick and she needed her mom. And then so now he understands. Excuse me. Sorry.


Oh, you're OK. You're OK. You're good.


He understands that it was postpartum depression, although he doesn't know what that means. All right.


And so what what role did postpartum depression play in you? Leaving your husband was something that you had to just get out of there. Were you feeling you were going to hurt somebody? What what about postpartum? Did you have to leave? I don't. It's really hard for me to answer that question like I became a totally different person and I was resenting my husband and I just had had enough. Yeah.


And so I'm in it, so I'd rather you begin to take ownership of that decision instead of putting it on postpartum depression, because here's what it's going to do for your son. It's going to make him think that at any moment this looming thing is going to come upon me and make me do something that is going to be irrevocable.


Oh, yeah, and he will live his life under a cloud, and when he finds out granddad took his life, that's going to be yet another cloud that is always going to be looking over his shoulder to see if it's coming after him. Oh, that makes sense, and it feels like you're doing him a favor by letting him know Mommy did not leave because of you, Mommy didn't even leave because of her own decision. Mommy had to because she was sick.


And when a kid is a little you did the right thing.


You did a noble thing. And letting somebody know that somebody's sick, that's that's actually accurate.


Language is good. But over time, you're going to have to and it's going to be hard because he's going to look at you and think you chose somebody else other than him. And to a degree, you did. You did. You moved out.


And you're going to have to reckon with you, too, which means you're going to have to go through a grieving process in a forgiveness process and a grace process so that you can be whole for your son.


You can be whole for these new wonderful kids that you've got as well. Right. And they're worth having a full whole Rachel. All right, so what's happened has happened. Are you remarried? Yes. OK, and you got one new one and another one on the way, correct? OK, so. At the end of the day, the sooner you can morph that conversation to one of ownership, the better. The more the sooner your son realizes that there's not this illness that's going to take over his mind, in his heart and his character and make him do evil things, the better, the more he learns that he's ultimately in control of his thoughts and his actions, the better.


And let's deal with dad. Is Dad a good guy? Oh, he's wonderful. His birth father. But yeah, his dad is wonderful. Do you regret leaving him? No. OK, so it was in your heart was the right thing to do. I mean, I never grew up like, oh, I can't wait to get divorced. Right, of course. But I'm really happy with. My new husband, great. OK, and yeah, and I take that question back, I asked you an unfair question.


I don't hear a lot of people talk about their ex as they're so wonderful. OK, so that's fair. OK, so I asked you I asked you an unfair question.


So I take that question back. All that to say you are blessed in that you do not have to you're not walking around feeling you have to defend or protect your son from his dad. You get to cooperate with him, OK? We yes, and we I feel like we do a really good job cooperating. Wonderful. Wonderful. So have you ever. Been open and honest with your husband. About you, about why you left. Yes, OK, I told him that before we even got married because I wanted it all on the table.


OK, gotcha. Good deal. So here's the thing.


You and your husband keep a close eye on your little boy, but not too close. Let him grow up to be a little boy. Let him know that he is loved with reckless abandon. And when he asked questions, commit to never, ever lying to him. When there is tension in your home, which there's going to be right, you're going to have another young child. He's got he's back and forth between homes, let him know that his feelings are valid.


They don't always tell the truth, but his voice is one that can be heard. Right. And he doesn't get to make the final decision on everything because he's freakin nine. Right. And that he is loved and that he is loved. Over and over and over again. OK. And the first time he has a bad day or a sad day does not mean that everybody rushes off to the counselor that he's got a psychiatric illness, that he's broken, that he needs to go get counseling.


He may just need mom or dad to stop what they're doing for a minute and take him fishing to plug in with and listen to him to have a letter writing campaign with him, write building some of these things now so that when these traumas catch up with him in a in a demonstrative way, in a way that we can all see it, that he goes to you first, he doesn't hide. Does that make sense? Yeah, it's super helpful, thank you.


So you're playing a five year game and you're playing a 10 year game, you're loving every day, but you want to win.


He has to have a conversation with somebody. He wants to think of you first. He wants to think a dad first.


There's no competition between the two of you. And he may fall head over heels for his step dad, your new husband. He may fall head over heels for his step mom, your ex husband's wife.


Either way, everybody's on the same page that this boy is going to know that he is loved, connected, swallowed up in people who care about him.


And he will never feel like he is being haunted by some giant cloud that's going to take his judgement, take his take his character, and ultimately take his family and ultimately take his life from him. Right. I do expect, Rachel, like being totally honest. I do expect him to have something he's going to have to work, work, work through in the future, probably.


I also believe for as messy as this situation is, he is blessed beyond belief to have two parents who still love him and still care enough about each other to not be idiots and not act like children and to be respectful about one another and to lean into that little boy. So thank you for that call.


I appreciate you love that little boy recklessly.


And I would say take him to an Astros game, but I don't even know what I think about the Astros anymore. So. All right, let's go to Alicia in Chicago. Alicia, how are we doing? I'm doing well and actually, how are you? I'm doing so good, so good. So how can I help today? I just want to get kind of your advice on how does one approach marriage after growing up with divorced parents?


That's an interesting question. So where is that question stemming from? Are you going to get married? I'm in a serious relationship, just like two nephews, and we're missing my current boyfriend and very serious talks with the next days, kind of preparing for that next step. But before the next step, I just have a little hesitation, not from not believing in marriage, but definitely ways of my mind having keep going through that. It's just it's one of those things I feel like I could do everything right to prepare.


But you can't predict the future still. Right?


So let's answer this big question. Number one, by the way, you may heard me laugh. You said we're in very serious talks and that's like contract negotiation language that I read like on ESPN dot com. So the way you said that was awesome. Like like he put an offer on the table and you're thinking, I don't know about that.


I'll take this offer. So that just made me laugh.


So this is a serious conversation. How were you hurt by your parents divorce? Maybe I was 15, so I made freshman high school and an only child. Oh, man, both was very close, the book it and still very close to us. And so that was having to split time. It was just really, really difficult. My parents did almost everything right after separating in terms of they never spoke to each other in front of me. They put me first off, they Kokorin kid.


I mean, they really did an excellent job after that. But you just can't take away some of the pain and hurt that it came with today, having to deal with it. Small things like, you know, how was this for Thanksgiving or Christmas? And, you know, just it's still exists today, even though we're 10 years in the future. And it's just a really great place.


So why in the world would you even want to get married? Who's this guy? You're married. What's his name? His name is Matthew.


Why in the world would you even be considering Matthew? You've seen it go south, you see what happens and you saw it happen with people who handle it well. Really well, yeah. Why in the world would you marry Matthew? Well, I do I still believe in marriage and really having a partner, you know, in life, I mean, why why why do you believe in it?


Why do you believe in that?


I do, because I saw it from, like, a lot of years. My parents not a very healthy marriage. They were kids. They were young when they had just fought hard. And they worked really hard and put me first year. So I had a really good childhood, a very loving home. And things still don't work out. So there is there is a part of me. But now meeting before me, Matthew, I still have that hope, though, to get married.


But then after meeting Matthew and seeing he's just a great person and just the best partner. I mean, he's it's just like it's the best teammate and just very.


So I want to change some of your language. OK, thank you. I loved you listening to you talk about your parents, right? They loved each other.


They fought for it. They went for it. And then you tossed in something that was a throwaway line. But it is really heavy and it's really existential. And I want you to never forget what I'm about to tell you, OK? OK, the phrase it just didn't work out. Is not real when it comes to relationships. Oh, hundred percent, somebody, whether it was one or both, made a decision to no longer continue rebuilding, to continue investing, and they pulled their chips off the table and said, I'm out.


Right, 100 percent. And so when you get married. We live in a culture, right, you know the stats as well as I do, every friend you have probably has parents who are divorced. Every friend I've got, not everyone.


A number of them have parents who are divorced, and even some of those who are still married are just roommates. Right. We see those you and I both experience that.


And so the reason I was asking you, why even do this? Why go down this road and. You answer my question, right, because having a partner is worth it and finding somebody and saying I'm all in and I'm going to continue to be all in, even as the game changes, as the tables change, as the number of chips, we both have to play changes as we continue down this wild adventure.


It's all going to continue to shift and change in this phrase, it just didn't work out is a decision. It's not a a a it just for some it does and for some it doesn't. Right. And so if you decide to get married to this guy and you're in very serious negotiations right now.


Right. All right. You're you're very serious talks. I want you to both agree right now that divorce is never on the table, it is not an option. It can't be an option, it won't be an option, and we're never going to even have it here to discuss and talk through. And so once an option is off the table. Then it's it's not an outcome, then you have to do the other side of that equation, which is let's build a marriage where we always plan things together, where we always commit to being radically honest with one another, but not idiotic, honest.


And there's a difference where we budget together and we dream together and we talk about when those dreams change and we express fears and we were vulnerable with one another.


And we talk about past hurts with one another, all these things that somehow stop over the course of a relationship and commit to that front end and commit to never having divorce as an option.


And then your relationship is going to be as build, I mean, as strong as you invest in the architecture and the continued reengineering of this thing. And so I'm going to give you the magic word here, if you don't want to get divorced, choose not to. Marry somebody that chooses not to. And can I give you one more uncomfortable moment? Yes, all relationship, one hundred percent of it is a risk. And it's a risk on the front end and it's a risk all the way through it.


And if you knew the outcome, if you knew how it ends, it wouldn't be a relationship, right? It would be a it would be a business arrangement. And so know going in that there is no there is no guarantee on the back end, that's what makes it so exciting and so scary and so beautiful. Right. It's a choice. And so, as you hear me say that, it sounds trite and silly. Right. Thank you, sir.


Now. Talk to me about it. Well, no, I didn't until you just I very much a person who likes control and would like to do like everything to work out, but because I made every right decision, I possibly could. So I think since now was up until now, I haven't really looked beyond five years in the future, whether with high school and college early in my career. So now the thought know looking OK, let's dream, you know, 10, 20, 30 years in the future.


It's like, whoa, whoa. That feels like out of my reach that I have control over. It is just scary. And that's basically it.


And that is that, hey, that's the rest of your life. That's what's so cool about this. That never goes away. The moment it stops being scary is the moment that people start looking over the shoulder right at the moment that people get comfortable and they lean back and they're like, oh, that's all right. Is the moment they stop investing in new architecture, they stop trying to build a stronger foundation. They stop trying to do the repair work on on this relationship.


And then the whole thing, they find it in ash. Right, so it is risky, it is exhausting, it is forever, and whatever you think you're planning for 20 years from now, I promise, I promise it will be different.


I work on the radio now. I have Instagram, for God's sake. I had like one promise on Earth is that I would never have Instagram. That was stupid. Right? So whatever my plan was, I wish I could go back and tell you what my plans were when me and my wife were dating. It probably involved. I don't even want to get into it. It's not what my life is now and my life is a thousand times better than I could have pictured it.


And for whatever it's worth, there have been multiple two or three or four times over the 20 plus years I've been dating and have been married to my wife when we reached an apex and said this could be this could be it. And we chose not to. We chose not to. Quote unquote, just say, let's call it it didn't work out. We didn't take our chips off the table, we may have got up and walked away from the table for a minute and walked around and then sat back down and said, these are the cards I've got.


What cards do you have? Let's lay it all out on the table and let's rebuild again. And let's rebuild again and let's keep rebuilding again. I love Alicia.


I love that you're asking these questions. I love that you are a person who loves control. And I want you to know who you are.


You are putting that on the table when you go all in on somebody else. And if you're listening to this and you don't you don't hear anything else.


I'm high on marriage. I still think it's got it's one of the most important cultural touchstones of our time. And I don't believe in things. Just run their course. I don't believe in things just didn't work out. I believe that people change and I believe people grow and I believe people change and grow together. And I also believe people at some point just cash in and say, I'm out, I'm done. I can't be here with you because you won't do X.


I can't be there with Y because she won't do X, Y and Z. And it's a risk, it's a risk, it's all in it's a risk. But Alicia said, go for it. All right, let's go. You know what, before we take this last call, I want to I want to talk about the. The January 7th, the January 7th month, the sugar free month, from January 7th to February 7th, I'm hoping that everyone listening to this will join me in this.


Here's the thing we can't not deny. I guess science has got a bad rap these days. We can't deny the science. We can't deny the reality that we're not sleeping. We are sick. We are overweight. We're out of shape. We are not moving. We are not nutritionally sound neurologically, neuro, biologically. At the end of the day, guys, that starts with sugar. And we are eating trash. We are overconsuming sugar and other sweeteners.


Logarithmically way, way too much, and so there is all these fad diets. Here's the thing. I was obsessed with fad diets and you know what kind of nerd I am. I used to keep spreadsheets and tracked my progress. I need to go back and find him. I don't even know if they exist anymore. But I kept spreadsheets about my own glucose monitor. I had a scale for all stupid good that did, which it does about no good.


But I had all these different metrics and I would track fad diets and so I would come home and every month it got to where my wife would be going to the store and she like, hey, what are we this month? We are raw vegan, we are gluten free or paleo or Akito or whatever it is. And there's all these different diets. Here's a couple we pulled off the Internet's vegan, gluten free, dairy free paleo Akito intermittent fasting.


That's not really a diet. It's not a diet road to lifestyle. The Carnivore Diet, Atkins, whole 30 cabbage soup, diet, grapefruit juice cleanse, charcoaled detox, awesome baby food diet. Weight Watchers, the five by five, the fill in the blank. Right. Not to mention all the powders and potions and pills that help you lose weight fast, lose weight fast for nineteen ninety five plus shipping. They don't have shipping and handling any more do they.


They just have all free shipping. That's a bummer. I didn't think about that. But here's the thing. Some of you are already a week into the new year, and if you listen to the earlier podcast, you considered yourself a person who's going to be a steward of their body. Right. And you maybe did something dumb.


Like I said, I want to lose 50 pounds. I want to put a number on it. I wanted let's all just agree to do one thing.


I want everyone to join me January 7th to February 7th, January 7th of February 7th. No sugar. That's no sugar. No artificial sweeteners, that's basically water and tea and coffee, right? Topo, Chico, if you're into the bubble water, oh, my gosh, it's so good, but no Cokes, no Diet Cokes. No orange juice. Right, the fruit juice is loaded with sugar, no, Gatorade's right, no sports drinks, no Red Bulls, no sugar candy, no work.


The work, the dish, a candy. No gummy candies for guys like me. Oh, my gosh. My birthday is today, so I'm going to have a birthday cake tonight and then I'm off starting tomorrow and I hope you'll join me that you commit. Just give yourself 30 days. You no sugar. What's going to happen is this you're going to feel like you got hit by a bus in about a week. You're going to feel terrible.


You're going to have headaches. You're not going to sleep. It's going to be uncomfortable. And I'm going to tell you to push through. I'm going to be posting about it on Instagram. You can follow me at John Deloney. You are going to begin to feel uncomfortable and then you're going to realize, oh, my gosh, I'm an addict.


I'm an addict. If you're really into this, try no alcohol for 30 days because alcohol reduces itself to sugar in your body, too.


It has a very similar I'm not including the alcohol. I'm not including the the alcohol part. It has a very similar glycemic response to just regular sugar.


So try no alcohol. But for for all intents and purposes, cut the sugar 30 days. You can do it. You can feel terrible. And after about a week, after about two weeks, you are going to feel like somebody pulled a cataract off your face, off your eyes, off your soul.


You're going to feel yourself full of energy. You're going to feel yourself walking around taller.


You're going to feel yourself looking at people in the eye. It is magic and it starts with getting off sugar. By the way, you got to eat healthy on the back into you can't just cut out sugar and just do nothing else, right? So eat healthy. Get good, good, healthy fat, eat good protein, right, eggs and good meat, take care of your body. Take care of yourself. Let's cut the sugar for 30 days.


I want everyone to go for it and let's see what's on the back end. If you get off sugar for 30 days and you don't see radical improvement in almost every area of your life. Hollaback girl, let me and let me know and I will read your. Yeah, I will personally discredit myself on this show. It'll be awesome. All right, let's take one more call. Let's go to John in Springfield, Missouri. John, what's happening?


Brother, how are we doing today? I'm not so bad. How are you? Good. Not so bad. Hey, real quick, do you say Missouri or Missouri?


Not the correct way is Missouri. I'm here to settle the argument. I heard it both ways, but the right way.


Missouri, you are the greatest person I've talked to all day and that makes me happy. Every once in a while somebody totally comes through in the clutch, John.


And you just did. You don't have to go to church this week. You don't have to be nice to most people. You're good. You are squared up. Thank you so much for being able to read write, but good for you. All right. So how can I help you? You help me. How can I help you? Right.


So I do a lot of traveling for work and my wife and I need some help strategizing and getting the tools to be better when we're apart. Um, my job has been traveling all over the state out of state for surprise trips of a day to time, up to a week of a time. I've got conferences all across the country and classes that I have to take all over the place. And whenever we spend time apart, if it's difficult, I mean, she's great and I think she thinks that I'm pretty great, too.


And we talk a lot. But sometimes it's hard for me to focus on my job. Sometimes it's just lonely being in a hotel room, looking at the ceiling. Are there ways that we can or other things that we can do to make the most and really, you know, trying to get through these times? I hate feeling like I'm just, you know, having to trudge through. Is there a way that we can make this time better when we're apart?


Man, that's an awesome question. I appreciate that. Let's think through that together first. What kind of work do you do? I mean, cyber security, cyber security, so even with the shutdown this year, they've had you traveling all over and still attending things and learning things and being in people's drawers and whatnot less than usual.


I work a lot with the cameras and door won't close. The door won't open part of it. So if the door won't close, I got to go out there and close the door.


Gotcha. OK, and tell me about this lovely wife of yours, Tashi. Vocalised, she doesn't like your job, do you just sense it on her? No, it's what she doesn't like my job. And it's much more of a of a distance thing. What is it about this job that makes you want to keep this gig? I, I, I'd love it. I like from the like, it's what I'm supposed to be doing. Ever since I was a little kid, I would be eating waffles in the morning and getting on the computer and learning like this is it's a dream job.


What's the dream part about it? The cyber security part of it. The Internet's part of it, solving problems, part of it. What's the dream job? Part of it. It's it's the solving problems, and sometimes it's it's more difficult for me to say that in others when you're just a little bit, you know, deep into the problems. But, man, I just love it. It's it's a calling. I'd like to help people and I like to, you know, get online and fix problems and work through stuff and be able to provide solutions to people immediately and seeing that immediate result.


It just it feels really, really good. And I like to think that I'm OK at it. I get paid to do it.


So I'm going to tell you something hard that I just heard, OK? When you were first called and you were talking about your marriage and your wife, and she's you love her and she is good, you said all the right things. You said all the right things that were good and noble. And then when you talked about your job, you came alive. Is that indicative of your relationship? I don't think so. OK, I'll be honest.


It's easy for me to get chatty about my job. I'm pretty close to the chest about my relationship. It's actually pretty difficult for me to talk to people about it. And, you know, that's that's part of the reason why it's been tougher for the both of us because, you know, I'm going on this trip and I feel like I'm doing the same thing. You know, it's hard for me to reach out to somebody, ask them, you know, I've got this issue.


Yeah. How am I supposed to address it? I'm used to just fixing things as I go and knowing the solution and just making it happen.


Right. So at the end of the day, you talk about your job as you're calling something you've wanted since you were a little kid. And I want you to put that same sort of existential weight on your marriage and specifically that woman that you promised yourself to for the rest of your life. And so I want you to have very clear in your heart and mind that if it ever comes to a point that you've got to choose between the two, that's going to be a difficult but clear cut decision.


And that will fall to your wife. And I want you to start there because anything else is going to be strategy in marriage. Can't survive on strategy. Is a part of it, right? So you're calling in saying, what can I do in a hotel? Well, man, they've got face time. There's got all kinds of of mutual games. They got all kinds of stuff you can do. But at the end of the day, your wife has to feel as valuable as this job is, and she maybe she does, she has to feel as though not only have you is is your job a calling, something you've thought about since you were a kid, but that she is your purpose?


She is why you get up and we'll get up in the middle of the night and catch a 4:00 a.m. flight to go fix a door. Right. Yes, she is. And I can't I can't shake the fact, John, that it sounds like there's a a values misalignment here, OK?


She has permission to struggle with you being gone the same as you have permission to struggle being gone. What it sounds like you'll need to do is get in a room together and maybe you'll have already done this, but get in a room together and. Talk openly about what this job with the travel is costing you and maybe nothing. Maybe it's just some frustration, it's annoying, right? It's just I'm gone a lot and I'm struggling with it.


Or maybe it's way deeper than you think, maybe if you sit down with her and you'll start going through, she's going to open up to you in a way that's going to be really hard or maybe this shut down.


You've traveled less and you've realized this is my calling. I love this job. I love problem solving. I love doing on the interweb.


But, man, I love being around my wife. I haven't been around her this much ever. And I love it, and the thought of getting back on the road is starting to make me real uncomfortable. And what I'll tell you, John, is millions of people are reconsidering their profession and they're, quote unquote, calling.


I work with some of the best IT folks on planet Earth and they go home every day at 5:00 and they make great money and they work their butts off and we have our recruiting them all of the time. And so I'm telling you to say there are security jobs.


Are it jobs or Internets jobs that don't always require hopping on a plane and heading off and solving that sort of problem? There may be that you are going to find a job that's different than the one you have, but in a similar field, that still feels like the calling is still meeting that need with you in terms of things you can do.


Man, it's all about intentionality.


It's knowing what is your wife missing when you're gone besides your physical presence, it could be a you're always writing letters to one another that you can hold and tangibly touch, that you have some rules and regulations. And I say rules loosely, you're invited to one another that you're always going to step out of whatever meeting you are at these intervals throughout a day and talk to each other on face time.


You're going to make sure you FaceTime each other, watch a movie together at night. All of this is a distant second and third and fourth, actually being in the same room together.


But again, it's just strategies. I actually like the idea of watching a movie together with the other person on FaceTime, even though it's kind of weird, but who knows, man, but it starts with you guys sitting down and figuring it out again. I don't want to keep circling back and saying the same thing over and over, John. But there's something else here. That we could talk about for hours and hours. It sounds like there's a disconnect between you and your wife in this spiritual calling you have with your work.


So tonight, I want you to turn all the electronics off in the house. I want you to sit down with your wife, and I want you to have a hard conversation with her, but maybe not a hard one, but a direct one, an open one and everything on the table. Conversation about how much you love her, about how much you love spending time with her. And I want you to ask her to be vulnerable with you about how she feels about your traveling, how she feels about you being gone, how she feels about you being home for this season and then come up with a plan together, create a plan together of what travel is going to look like, what distance is going to look like.


And is this actually the right job for you long term? Because, man, you may have been called to this job, but you promised that young woman you for the rest of your life, right.


Thank you so much for that call, John from Springfield, Missouri. He said it right and I love it. As we wrap up, man, it's one of my favorite songs of all time. I still randomly find myself singing this when I'm walking down the street, when I'm just taking out the trash. This song just pops in my head. When I was a kid, I used to listen to it on a cassette player.


You had to hit record and play at the same time when it came on the radio kids and he had recorded on a blank cassette tape, said the nine hundred year old man and I used to record this song off the radio and play it over and over and over again.


It's off to nineteen eighty nine punk album by one of the legendary bands, Aerosmith, Steven Tyler and Company. Sing this classic song, What It Takes and it goes like this. There goes my old girlfriend. There's another diamond ring and all those late night promises. I guess they don't mean a thing. And so, baby, what's the story? Did you find another man? Is it as easy as sleep in the bed that we made? When you don't look back, I guess the feeling starts to fade away.


I used to feel your fire, but now it's cold inside and you're back on the street like you didn't miss a beat. Yeah. So tell me what it takes to let you go. Tell me how the pain is supposed to go. Tell me how it is that you can sleep in the night without thinking you lost everything that was good in your life to the toss of the dice. Tell me what it takes to let you go, tell me what it takes to let you go.


Ladies and gentlemen, this has been the Dr. John Deloney show.