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Conquering traumatic events doesn’t instantly relieve you of your emotional baggage. This applies even more to couples than it does to individuals. It’s possible your trauma seeps into your spouse too.

Overcoming addiction or depression doesn’t magically make your spouse’s trauma disappear. But you can speed up this healing process and restore the love you first felt in your marriage.

In this episode, Jasmine and I reveal the mistakes we made during our healing process. And how avoiding them helps you heal your marriage in as little as a couple months.

Listen now and fast track your healing process.

Show highlights include:

  • Why watching your husband ditch his addiction doesn’t instantly unburden you (and when you can expect the weight will lift from your shoulders) (2:47)
  • The “Reborn” secret for overcoming years of baggage in your marriage and falling in love again (3:44)
  • How emotional responses after traumatizing events confirms some baggage still lurks in your psyche (5:37)
  • The weird way to overcome deep psychological agony with paper and pen (7:43)
  • Why spouses of former addicts a develop a wicked sense of “Second Hand PTSD” (and how to conquer these emotions before they crush your marriage) (10:59)
  • The counterintuitive way counselors and therapists prolong your suffering as a couple (and how to turn your marriage around in a couple of months) (13:18)
  • How you make your wife feel like a sex object (even if you don’t have a porn addiction) (17:12)
  • Does decades-old trauma devour your joy? Here’s how to get rid of 50 years of trauma in 4 days (20:15)

If you want to radically change how much control you have over your emotions in as little as 20 days, you can go to https://thefreedomspecialist.com/feelbetternow and sign up for the Choose Your Own Emotion course.

If you or somebody you know is looking to drop the ‘F’ Bomb of freedom in your life and break free from addiction, depression, anxiety or anything that’s making you feel flat-out stuck, head over to https://thefreedomspecialist.com/ and book a call where we can look at your unique situation and give you the roadmap you’ve been missing.

If you’d like to buy a copy of my book, Is That Even Possible?: The Nuts and Bolts of Energy Healing for the Curious, Wary, and Totally Bewildered, you can find it on Amazon here: https://www.amazon.com/That-Even-Possible-Healing-Bewildered/dp/1512336041

Read Full Transcript

It's time to rip the cover off what really works to ditch addiction, depression, anger, anxiety, and all other kinds of human suffering. No, not sobriety. We're talking the F-word here: Freedom. We'll share, straight from the trenches, what we have learned from leaving our own addictions behind, and coaching hundreds of others to do the same—and since it's such a heavy topic, we might as well have a good time while we're at it. [00:27.6]

(00:34): And welcome back for yet another edition of the alive and free podcast with Jasmine. Now, this particular episode today, it's something that came, Jasmine actually wanted to do something like this because the video that you guys listened to, or the audio you listened to, and the one that we had up on our site for a long time, we still have it up is one that was like five years ago, which means five years after I had started coming out of all my stuff. That's where she was in that place. And she mentioned that like a lot of people get the sense that once you're there, that that's where it stops. And so she wanted to kind of step back and be like, look, I wanna do a video of like even five years after that. And what do things look like now versus what they look like, then what things have changed within her, within me and so on and so forth. And so today you get to hear Jasmine talk, hopefully a lot more. We'll see about that in that transition. So if you wanna start by just kind of giving a sense of what it felt like for you at that point in time, kind of where you were, what were the things that were there and then kind of March forward?

(01:39): Sure. So when we did the video, it was something I really wanted to do because I wanted all the wives out there to know that they're not alone. And there's somebody else going through this at the same time. And there is hope on the other side and that it doesn't always have to be this, this battle, but thinking about it, I feel like I, it was still kind of a heavy, heavy topic at the time. Just a lot of, I think, cried a lot. Probably I actually haven't watched that video since then. So this is all just the feelings that I remember from making the video to be fair. It was like an hour and a half long interview that I edited down to 17 minutes. So I got to spend a few days listening to her, talk about how big of a shuck I was,

(02:25): Cry my eyes out. But it is, it's kind of a heavy, a heavy video and like I wanted it to be real. So it it's totally 100% what I was feeling at the time. So, but I also wanted it to be clear that it doesn't always have to be a fight. It doesn't always have to be a bad. So hopefully I did that, but in the process, I just looking back years later, it just feels like there's still a heaviness to life that I was living at that point in time. Like I was still having some of, all of that baggage attached to me still. And so five ish, years later, I wanted to do another video or whatever, just because I don't feel that heaviness anymore. You know, it doesn't feel like this, Hey, this is really, really hard, but you can do it and come out on the other side and it'll, you know, you'll be fine, but it's just like, oh yeah, that was a thing. And I still remember the feelings. I still can empathize with people who have going through that, cuz I went through it, but it doesn't have a hold on me anymore. I feel like my life is lighter and it's, it's not weighed down by all of the baggage that was still there.

(03:44): Yeah. So sometimes when I talk to people about addiction, I talk to 'em about, or, or at the beginning of the retreats and stuff, I'll, I'll say honestly, it'll get to the point where it almost feels like it happened to somebody else. I have all of the memories, I have all the understanding that was gained, but it's like, that was some other person and I just happened to have access to their data banks. Is that similar kind of like I could, I would agree with the almost as if it's another person, but it, it was very personal to me. So I feel like I have become the different person. So it was still me, but it's like me and a past life. You heard it here, folks, Jasmine believes in past lives. Sure. So the heaviness disappears because it was subtle back then, right? Like you, you,

(04:30): Yeah. Like I was definitely in a much better space at that point of the video than I had been than both of us. Right. Both of us together. And that, that was great, but like life goes on and we have experiences and both Bob and I have changed a lot even since then. And so just noticing the difference. That doesn't mean that while there was those five years and then everything's been awesome. We've been learning and growing together and like bonding and cuz that has not how it's been at all. But sitting here five years later just overall is like, you know, a light happy, cool feeling like that was in. I can, I can talk to people and help them, but that's not even close to my life anymore.

(05:17): So what would've been like, looking back since you're looking at this, looking back, what, what are some of the things that when you look back are indicators that you were still carrying it as something heavy? A lot of the crying actually I think it was still just weighing on my heart. Just Like how often? Well, I mean in the video. Yeah, yeah, yeah. So like I cried a lot in the video and I think that's a sign of just the heaviness that was there.

(05:45): Yeah. I mean like when we're dealing with rude issues, folks, if you have any kind of emotional response to something, even if intellectually, you know, it's like, okay, that's not a thing anymore. If you're responding emotionally, then that just means that some part of you, it still feels like it's a real thing. Even if you know, intellectually, it's not. So that's what you're kind of referring to. Yeah. Okay. Yeah. Like at that time, what were some of the other things that you were doing that seemed that now looking back or like, man, I was still carrying that kind of heavy.

(06:11): I was probably still micromanaging everything and actually think a little bit of that is my personality anyway, but more to an extreme, I was less, less okay. With just people knowing in general, you know, like, oh, it's still a, not completely hidden cuz obviously we put it out there for the entire world if they wanted to, to see, but still like fear of what are people gonna think? What are people gonna say kind of thing. And so now how, how is that

(06:45): Now? It's like, I look at the video and I, I feel like I could, you know, give myself a hug and be like, you are doing so great, but there's so much more, you know, there's so much more lightness that you get to enjoy. There's so much more happiness and calmness and freedom from all of these things that you have stepped away from, but they're still kind of following you. And so like I would, I would tell her great job, you're doing awesome now let's keep going. You know, let's, let's get to the place where it's like F Relic in the field happiness instead of while I'm sitting on the grass and that's happy. So what would you say some of the things that you did that we did or that happened along the way that helped to make that transition between then and now?

(07:35): So I think at that point in time, I was either still having my flashback anger or just getting through it. And something that helped me to actually really get over that was to write my experience down. So I actually had a blog a long time ago. I don't think it's still active or anything. What, but where I was writing lessons, I learned from experience of, you know, those eight to 10 years of being a spouse support, whatever for addiction and just, you know, trying to help people be like, Hey, this is what's happening. This is how I dealt with it and kind of thing. And the intention was to kind of put that out as like a class or something of people could buy into or whatever. But what I discovered was as soon as I had finished all of that, it was actually for me to get all of my stuff out.

(08:31): So like I know in your, in Bob's program he has, you know, some writing exercise and things. And I think that was kind of my own version of doing that. Just clear it out of my system. So once I, once that no longer had a hold on me, some of the breathing that Bob does, I've probably tried most of it, but I, I pick and choose which ones I like. There's one that I really like that I, this is kind of my go-to and the others, you know, they're not for me. So just trying to have a better communication relationship with Bob, like actually trying, instead of saying, this is too hard, I'm gonna shut down or go talk to somebody else, like figuring out with him. And sometimes it doesn't work to figure it out, but at least we tried and we can get to some place of understanding

(09:23): If you or someone, you know, is looking to drop the FBO of freedom in their life, whether that's from past trauma, depression, anxiety, addiction, or any other host of emotional struggles, but they just don't know how or want some help doing it, head on over to the freedom specialist.com/feel better now and check out some of the things we've got in store for you or book a call. So we can look at your unique situation and get you the help that you're looking for.

(09:54): Yeah. So let's take like a 20,000 foot view for a second. What we're talking about is this is a spouse relationship or a significant other, or a loved one relationship where there's been some kind of hardship in, in, in it. Meaning I went through 18 years of really struggling, trying to quit looking at pornography in order all of all my other issues and couldn't figure out how to quit felt miserable. So I, there was decades of my life, basically trying to figure that out and figure out how to get through it. Then somebody else comes along and we get married and now she is thrown into the middle of it at first sort of like a little bit at the, at time and eventually into the throws of it. She's in the deep end. And now her process of finally processing all that stuff has taken, took five full years to get to that place where she was in that initial place and then another, and then another however long in order to get to kind of where we're at here.

(10:57): So I just wanted to back up and say, Hey, look, expecting it to happen overnight is okay, I'm over it. You should be over it too. Right? The spouse can have some kind of PTSD from just kind of handling demands, even if it's an illness or something. And so to suggest that like, well, it's my issue issue and I got over it. Now you need to get over it. Well, their issue, so to speak was the fact that they had to deal with an issue that was out of their control in many ways. Yeah. And that can be, that can be rough. That can be like an illness. It can be like an injury. It can be like a trauma in many ways that they didn't have control over. It can be like a rape. It can be like so many different things because it's forced upon them in ways that they don't expect in ways that they don't understand. So my question there, one thoughts on that.

(11:45): Yeah, no, I totally agree with that. Because you're both two separate people having two separate experiences. So just because one gets over theirs really quickly that doesn't, it's not a equals a, you know, the, the other person has to do it on their own and whether they actually do get over it really quickly at the same time. That's cool. But if it takes, you know, a couple weeks months, I don't know, you years, that's just dependent on that person and where they are with themselves internally. Like some of the big explosions that Bob and I have had together, some of them have dragged out and some of 'em have been just like, you know what we're done with this argument. That's trying to figure it out. Let's just start fresh right here. Start from ground zero and move forward. And both of us did that, but definitely not all the time.

(12:41): No, not all the time. So, okay, so that brings up this question and this is the one that I imagine some of you might might be going through your heads like, oh my goodness. So is it gonna take 10 years for us to get better? And I really want to take that question and rip it to shreds and like give you a different sense of, of what's possible. It took us this long and to be fair, it hasn't taken 10 years. We've been great. Like pretty good for a while. Yeah. A number of years. So, but it took us this long because we were doing this trial and error. There weren't a lot of good resources out there. Yes. There are counselors and therapists all over the planet, but most of them come from this paradigm of someone is broken. Someone is wrong. There's a problem here.

(13:27): It's an insoluble problem. Somebody needs to win the argument. We need to mediate this and, and whatnot. And so often, even, even though that's not their intention, often it ends up being a bigger problem than it needs to be. And what I wanna do is kind of like talk about how fast it's possible to turn things around when you know what you're doing, as opposed to when you're doing it trial and error. Cuz that was our approach. Yeah. So if you're gonna do trial and error, I probably spent a good, solid $50,000 going every which way, deliberately trying to find answers just on my own. And I spent years of time waiting. I didn't spend any money on me aside from Ice cream, New pair pants, But I didn't, I didn't try any programs or anything, but I did spend time and energy, you know? So it was an investment for sure.

(14:23): And I spent time as well. And that was also time. That was, we weren't working very well together because I was going other places to try and figure things out. And I, if you asked me, time is the bigger investment. But so that was a of time we're talking years and money that we spent throwing at an issue that ultimately is much simpler. So if you're gonna go the sort of trial and error route, then yeah, it can take a long time, but there's hope even that way it can turn around pretty quickly we did it,

(14:54): We did it and it's amazing. And it's great. And it, it wasn't like 10 years of drudgery and then all of a sudden it turned around, no, it was like, okay. Yeah, for the first couple years there was a lot to work through, but basically it was like the sun dawning, you know, it just got lighter and lighter as the timeline on. Yeah. And so, yeah, it's a little brighter at midday than it was in the morning time and sometimes a cloud passes through. Yeah. And that's fine, you know,

(15:20): But ultimately it was still bright day, you know, all this other stuff. And, and so like the lightness was there, starting from the beginning a little bit, you know, after a little while L and then the lightness just continued to grow. So it's not a big, long drudgery, even if you're doing it that way. Right. Right. So if you were to say, Hey, look, if you do it our way, it's gonna take a long time. How, if you were to turn it around and say, look, if you kind of approach it the way that we take our clients through it, we take 'em through these retreats. We help them process all that stuff all in a few days. And we give them kind of a, how long would you say it's gonna take for them to kind of turn things around?

(15:56): Are you talking as a couple as a couple, a spouse as a couple? So the, the biggest thing I see, cuz I all, I try and go to the men's retreats and the women's retreats, but just one night where I teach the guys and dancing and then I usually bring some dessert and then we have like a Q and a and a lot of 'em ask, Hey, my wife is, you know, I feel this change. My wife doesn't see it. You know, she's struggling. Like they love their wives or they're trying to love their wife. And honestly, I think the biggest help if they're looking for help would be for their wives to join the program because then one, they know what their husbands are doing in the program. And two, it works. So for the wives to be able to also be on the same pace of change, I guess, instead of he's doing the program, now I gotta go figure it out by myself, you know, trial and error error for the, the wife when the husband is figuring it out. Like it's, it's uneven unbalanced. But if, if the same resources available for the wife, I'd say, totally jump in on that.

(17:10): Yeah. So we've seen, we've had many wives go through the process. So they're dealing with feeling like a sex object sometimes, or they're dealing with feeling like they're not good enough, or they need to be different in order for their husband to be happy or all of these other things that come about it, not just not just from pornography usage or over hypersexualization or anything like that. Sometimes, you know, J just they're the mom and they are underappreciated and, and they have lost their identity into their children and they don't know who they are anymore. They don't know what they want. And they feel like they, they're not a separate individual. And there's a lot of things that they're dealing with on top of any past traumas that they've been carrying that they've just sort of identified with. And like, this is my history, this is my past.

(17:56): They don't get a lot of chances to do that because the husband usually takes the limelight as the guy with the addiction. If we're talking about pornography and stuff, obviously if we're talking about depression, anxiety, and stuff, both people suffer that. And we've had them turn things around within a short span of time, like a couple of months. But that doesn't mean that's the end of the journey. It's infinite folks like, yeah, it's a nonstop exploration of goodness, but getting to the starting point of goodness that can happen within a few months, time, even less sometimes. So we, we did a couple's retreat a while ago with, with a handful of couples. And that was an incredible experience, getting them on the same page, showing them what it is that we've, we've taught others in terms of physically being able to connect emotionally, being able to connect verbally, being able to connect

(18:47): And having them on the same page, you know, and working together to get through an issue whatever their issue was or issues, you know? But it was amazing to me, it was funny because I think all of them had kids and they were talking about their kids and they're like, well, my kid does this and my kid, you know, reacts this way. And then as they're working together in the, at the retreat, you know, it's very clear why their kids do that because we see them doing the exact same thing.

(19:19): Yeah. It's kind of funny because our kids do the same thing is that, and we're like, you know, you learned that from me, let me show you a better way. But the point it's like, it can be a very exciting ride and all the heaviness that you're feeling right now, all the, all of the drudgery, whether you're the person who's been struggling with the addiction or the depression or the trauma or whatever else. And you've been, been just fighting to keep your head a above water, or you're the person that's there in a loving, supportive role, but also wishing the, that you, the support role would end and that you could just actually be a spouse. Again, it may feel like there's no light at the end of the tunnel or that this is gonna take a long time. That is baloney, the human body, the human mind, they rebound so quickly that anybody telling you otherwise does not understand and has not witnessed the capacity for the human body in mind to heal and change.

(20:15): I've seen postural things be corrected in a very short amount of time. Like within minutes sometimes where this chronic posture pattern suddenly changes. I've seen mental problems go away within an hour or less. Sometimes I've seen massive years of trauma. Like 50 years of trauma go away within four days of our retreat space where we've had people come in and, and they were abused. And they spent all this time that we have one guy who spent not just his childhood being traumatized and abused, but also traveling around the country for decades, talking to others about child abuse and the trauma, and never feeling like he would ever be free of it. And just feeling like his life was gonna be an endurance race. And yet he comes, he comes and within a couple of days, all of a sudden all of that stuff goes away and the lightness is the there, and now he gets to move on and actually start implementing life in a new way. Cuz he's no longer trying to just manage what's there's nothing left to manage, which means he gets to live life in a new way, which is a brand new exploration. And you can feel like a fish outta water and the same inside of a relationship. So here we are 10 years down the road. What would be kind of like your, your pep talk for the, for the spouses or

(21:32): I'm not very good at pep talks, But okay. No pep talks. This is an UN pep talk. None for you. If I look back, you know, first 10 years of our marriage, all I wanna do is like, hold my former self, like a baby, you know, like my heart aches for what she had to go through. And like, I, I remember it. I, I can feel it if I want to, but like I just wanna hold her and tell her everything's gonna be okay. Like, we're fine. We'll get through this. You take the first five years after coming out of that. And I want to like grab her by be like, Hey, come on, let's go. It's fun over here. Like I know you have all that heavy stuff still, but let's, let's go run. Let's go do this. So, you know, it's for us, it was gradual for me, it was gradual. But it did happen. You know, the lightness came, the fun came, the happiness came and it wasn't always just, okay, good. We're out of it. You know, I think I did need a space to just breathe and to learn that everything was gonna be okay. But after that, it's super fun. It's it's exciting.

(22:44): So essentially, as we kind of wrap up for today, the main shot is it can happen really, really fast. Like if the two of you are really, really willing to shift and set everything down, nothing that has passed has to control anything that comes only you carrying that in your mind will bring it forward. And I know that there's a feeling of like, but they wronged me or they did this. But carrying fear of feeling with you is like drinking poison and hoping the other person dies. It only ruins your life. And so if you can put it down, it can happen really fast. And at the same time, it doesn't have to happen really fast. You can take as much time as you want. You can sit with things if you want. There's no requirement at you change. This is just an opportunity, an invitation that says, if you ever thought that change, wasn't possible. Guess what? Anybody who told you that is wrong, change is possible. And if you wanna live a life that isn't encumbered by anything that's ever happened in your past and any struggles that you think are permanent is possible. If you just learn how to work your mind and your body in a way in the way that they're designed to work, happiness then becomes a byproduct of life. It is a natural consequence and then the rest of life can grow from there.

And that's it for todays “Alive and Free Podcast.” If you enjoyed this show and want some more freedom bombs landing in your ear buds, subscribe right now at wherever you get your podcasts from. And, while you're at it, give us a rating and a review. It'll help us keep delivering great stuff to you. Plus, it's just nice to be nice. [26:54.6]

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