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Dr. Chelsea Wakefield
Psychotherapist, Author, Couples Counselor

Chelsea Wakefield, Ph.D., LCSW is a Jungian-oriented psychotherapist, couples therapist, dream worker, and workshop/retreat leader who works with individuals, couples and groups. For over twenty years, she has helped people move beyond the wounds of the past, access their archetypal potential, and live more vibrant and meaningful lives. Chelsea draws from a depth of training in clinical and transpersonal methods, helping people to integrate the insights of inner work into daily living. She has a passion for supporting women in developing their luminous potential.

Wakefield has led educational retreats and workshops around the world, and offers community workshops for those wanting to improve and enrich their relationships. She holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology, a master’s in social work, and a Ph.D. in clinical sexology. She has published three books, which are valued by both clinical professionals and educated lay audiences: Negotiating the Inner Peace TreatyIn Search of Aphrodite, and The Labyrinth of Love.

She is an assistant professor at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) Psychiatric Research Institute and former director of the UAMS Couples Center. Opened in November 2016, the Couples Center seeks to help couples navigate the unique challenges of relationships in the 21st century by providing counseling, group therapy, and community education about love, desire, relationships and sex. The center also teaches student counselors about the unique demands of providing therapy and counseling to couples.

These days, Dr. Wakefield runs her own private practice offering similar programs for couples, individuation work, and sex therapy.

Listen to Kerry's first interview with Dr. Wakefield at https://www.flagandbanner.com/radio-show/chelsea-wakefield-10-13-2017.asp


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Listen to Learn:

  • The importance of inner selves
  • Why love is filled with hardship
  • About spirituality in relationships, and more...

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TRANSCRIPT

EPISODE 397

[INTRODUCTION]

[0:00:08] GM: Welcome to Up in Your Business with Kerry McCoy, a production of flagandbanner.com. Through storytelling, conversational interviews, and Kerry’s natural curiosity, this weekly radio show and podcast offers listeners an insider's view into the commonalities of entrepreneurs, athletes, medical professionals, politicians, and other successful people all sharing their stories of success and the ups and downs of risk-taking. Connect with Kerry through her candid, funny, informative, and always encouraging, weekly blog. Now it's time for Kerry McCoy to get all up in your business.

[INTERVIEW]

[0:00:41] KM: Thank you, son Gray. This show began in 2016 as a way for me and other successful entrepreneurs to pay forward our experiential knowledge. It didn't take long before my team and I realized that we were the beneficiaries. Listening to our guests has been both educational and inspiring. To quote the Dalai Lama, “When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know. But if you listen, you may learn something new.” After listening to hundreds of successful people share their stories, I've noticed some reoccurring traits. Most of my guests believe in a higher power, have the heart of a teacher, and they all work hard.

Before I introduce today's guest, who checks all those boxes, I want to let you know if you miss any part of today's show, or want to hear it again, or share it, there's a way and son Gray will tell you how.

[0:01:32] GM: All UIYB past and present interviews are available at Up In Your Business with Kerry McCoy's YouTube channel, Facebook page, The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette's digital version, flagandbanner.com's website, or wherever you listen to podcasts. Just ask your smart speaker to play Up In Your Business with Kerry McCoy. By subscribing to our YouTube channel, or flagandbanner.com's email list, you will receive prior notification of that day's guest. Back to you, Kerry.

[0:01:57] KM: Thanks again, Gray. My guest today is Dr. Chelsea Wakefield, Director of the Couples Center at UAMS in Little Rock, Arkansas. It was 2017 when the University of Arkansas for medical sciences recruited Chelsea to come to Little Rock and establish a program designed to treat those with interpersonal relationship issues. Chelsea is a nationally recognized expert in the field of couples therapy and an author.

Her mission, to help couples navigate the unique challenges of relationships in the 21st century by providing counseling, group therapy, and community education about love, desire, relationships and sex. The center also teaches her methodologies to other counselors, so they can help their clients, thus sharing in the love. Dr. Wakefield holds a bachelor's degree in psychology, a master's in social work, and a diploma in clinical sexology. She has published three books, Negotiating the Inner Peace Treaty, In Search of Aphrodite and more recently, The Labyrinth of Love, all of which are used by both clinical professionals and lay persons. It is with great pleasure we welcome to the table the extremely interesting and smart and deep thinker, Dr. Chelsea Wakefield. Hey, Chelsea, you got here in 2017. Are you still at UAMS?

[0:03:23] CW: I am still at UAMS and I'm primarily teaching at UAMS, the clinicians there. My private practice is currently over at Plaza West.

[0:03:34] KM: You started a private practice.

[0:03:35] CW: Well, I was doing therapy and couples therapy at UAMS, but we just regrouped everything in. About a year and a half ago, I lifted the couples therapy portion out of UAMS and I'm now over at Plaza West.

[0:03:50] KM: Well, I think the last time I interviewed you was in 2018. We've come a long way in our radio show, haven't we?

[0:03:56] CW: Yes, you have.

[0:03:57] KM: Thank you. I listened to the radio show before we this show. I was impressed with how good that show was. I want to recommend to all of our listeners that if you are struggling with anything and you're wanting to get back a part of your life, go listen to our 2018 show, it might strike a chord with you and it might make you think about your own cast of characters, which we're going to learn about.

I know it did me. I'm going to go back and read one of your original books that I read for that show, because it makes you identify your cast of characters, which I think we're going to do right now. Explain to our listeners what a cast of characters is.

[0:04:41] CW: Yes, and I'm remembering that interview that was focused on my book, Negotiating the Inner Peace Treaty, which is all about defining your inner cast of characters. What we're basically talking about is the sub-personalities that live in us that we have different roles, we have different moods, we have different ways of being. For example, you might be in one mode, years ago I used to – I had an office in the back of my home and I used to be in my therapist mode in my office. My therapist mode is very soft spoken, very compassionate. Then I would step over the threshold into my house and I'd say, “Tommy, have you started your homework?” Now I'm in mother mode. That's the shifting of states in terms of the different selves that live in us. We talked about that a lot.

In my latest book, The Labyrinth of Love, I look at how in a couple, there are two people each with their inner cast of characters and different parts of self-interact with different parts of the other person. Some of them get along really well, and some of them don't get along quite as well. It's interesting to think about that in your relationship with anybody in your life.

[0:06:02] KM: Really anybody. When I listened to our past show, I realized that my inner critic, which was one of the cast of characters, was really being tough on myself. I thought, you know, I need to go find some peace with my inner critic. I'm never good enough. I'm never doing enough. That kind of thing.

[0:06:20] CW: Yes.

[0:06:23] KM: I think we called them archetypes.

[0:06:25] CW: Yes.

[0:06:27] KM: I never knew that people had so many archetypes inside of them until I read your book and I related to 12 of them; the mother, the daughter, the wife, the inner critic, the accountant.

[0:06:42] CW: The entrepreneur.

[0:06:43] KM: The entrepreneur.

[0:06:48] CW: You also have a silly, fun self, too.

[0:06:51] KM: I do.

[0:06:52] CW: I totally enjoy.

[0:06:55] KM: The rebel. There's the rebel.

[0:06:56] CW: Absolutely.

[0:06:58] KM: It's funny, Gray. You'll like this. Matthew, my other son, your brother was in this last meeting.

[0:07:04] GM: Oh, yeah. He was in the last – he was around during the last three years, the last three years.

[0:07:08] KM: And he was recording the audio, and we started talking about the rebel and I said, “Oh, that's the one I relate to.” Then Matthew was like, “Yeah.” That's the one he relates to. Then all of a sudden, we decided that everybody, that businesses also have archetypes and personalities, which I never thought of. You said that, Chelsea. We decided that everybody who works for flagandbanner’s a rebel.

[0:07:31] CW: Interesting. Fun.

[0:07:33] KM: Or silly.

[0:07:33] GM: Yeah. We all definitely have our archetypes. That's for sure.

[0:07:38] KM: All right. The Labyrinth of Love is your most recent book. How did it come about and how long did it take to write it and why is it important? This is your third book.

[0:07:50] CW: This is my third book. It actually began with my editor for my second book who said to me, “Let's lift out all the material about couples and just focus on women,” for that book. That was In Search of Aphrodite. I'd been percolating on this book for quite a few years and just really distilling the concepts in it as I'm working with couples.

[0:08:17] KM: Are you saying that this book's all about women, or the Aphrodite book?

[0:08:20] CW: Aphrodite was all about women, but the suggestion was you have so much to say, we need to divide this into two books.

[0:08:25] KM: Okay. But The Labyrinth of Love is about a couple's relationship.

[0:08:28] CW: Absolutely. Absolutely. I've heard from people that have read it to say that everybody should read it just because it's about relationships. It's specifically about love relationships and the journey of love and the inevitable quagmires that we find ourselves in and how we make our way out of them.

[0:08:47] KM: The labyrinth.

[0:08:48] CW: The labyrinth, yes.

[0:08:49] KM: You have seventeen chapters in your book. That seems like a lot to talk about. But you have three parts and I like the first one, because everybody likes the first part. It's the falling in love. Let's talk about falling in love and the euphoria and what you say. You have the enchantment, the disenchantment, the attachment, the inner cast of characters that we just talked about, the swamped lands of love and the misbegotten solutions. Let's talk about the enchantment and how it changes you.

[0:09:24] CW: Yes. I hope that everyone has an opportunity to experience one of those enchantments. Because it really is a lofty, expansive, amazing experience to be head over heels in love with somebody. During that period of time, a couple of things are happening. First of all, there's something about the lock and key fit with certain people that we meet, where there's just something about them that just seems to be what we've always longed for. It is like the missing piece. Or when we're with them, they evoke something out of us, that it blossoms and comes into being. We love that. During that period of time, there's an enormous amount of dopamine that is being pumped.

[0:10:11] KM: Is that what it is?

[0:10:12] CW: We're drunk on love.

[0:10:14] KM: Oh, love drunk.

[0:10:15] CW: We are a love drunk.

[0:10:17] KM: That's addictive.

[0:10:18] CW: Yeah. It can be very addictive for people who want to do that over and over. You'll meet those people. They will get into a relationship and they'll stay there for about one or two years, and then –

[0:10:27] GM: They like honeymoon phase.

[0:10:28] CW: They like the honeymoon phase. Then when that fades, they move on. They rinse and repeat. They also –

[0:10:36] KM: Do some rinse and repeat.

[0:10:37] CW: Yes. It is like being in a washing machine. The problem is that they probably are repeating the drama as well. Because it is inevitable after that first phase of love, which Dorothy Tennov termed limerence. It's a pretty word, limerence.

[0:10:53] KM: What’s that mean?

[0:10:53] CW: It's that sparkly – We can just talk into the night. We can't keep our hands off of each other. You're everything I've always longed for and you're looking at me like I'm the most wonderful person in the world. Of course, I feel wonderful, because you think I am and I'm looking at you. I think you're the most wonderful person in the world. We're all on our best behavior.

What happens over time is as the dopamine starts to fade and we become more familiar with what I call the rest of the cast, which is those other inner characters that live in us that we don't initially see when we're falling in love, then we get a little bit disenchanted. That's actually when the real relationship starts. It's like, we've now taken a 360 degree walk around this person that we're so enamored of and chanted by. The enchantment is broken and now we have reality. Now you have the raw materials of what you're actually going to really build a relationship with. That's where the fun begins, the creativity begins and the work begins.

[0:11:57] KM: You're calling the work fun?

[0:12:00] CW: Well, you know what? I hear you, Kerry. For a lot of people, see, then –

[0:12:07] GM: I thought it.

[0:12:08] CW: Then you have a fork in the road. You can either engage in a process of personal and interpersonal growth, or you can go into the struggle and anguish phase. A lot of people that I work with in couples therapy have gone into the struggle and anguish phase and they're sitting on my couch in front saying, “Either we've fallen out of love, or we're living parallel lives, or we can't talk without arguing,” all these kinds of things, or there's been a betrayal and “I have no idea who you are anymore.” All these kinds of things that happen when people go into the wounding period.

[0:12:43] KM: What's attachment?

[0:12:45] CW: Attachment is really important to understand. It's a concept that was introduced many, many years ago by John Bowlby. The way that he discovered this, the way it came into being a whole concept is during the bomb droppings, during the Second World War, there was a movement called the Pied Piper Movement. They shipped all of the children out of London, because bombs were being dropped on London. If you ever have an opportunity, it'll break your heart to look at the pictures of these little children with their bundles and with their information pinned onto them somehow, so that people knew who they were and where they were going. They were either sent out to camps, good camps –

[0:13:33] KM: Or their grandparents out in the road.

[0:13:33] CW: Or grandparents and aunts and uncles out. Because they wanted that generation of children to live, if all the parents were killed that it's like, they didn't want the entire English population to be eliminated. What happened with those kids, it's something that we're so little, there's pictures of five-year-olds holding the two-year-olds hand. They got onto these trains and they went out to safety, but they mourned the separation from their parents. A lot of times, particularly if they were ill and they were in the hospital, they would call for their mothers, their fathers, “Mommy, mommy.” Then no one would come.

They eventually settled down, and people thought that they had come to terms with the separation, but what they'd actually done was letting go, and mourning and saying, “Oh, I guess they're never coming back. I guess, I'll never see my parents again. Now I'm all alone in the world and I've got to figure out how to navigate.” Little ones didn't have that sophistication of thought, but they basically just said, “Okay, they're gone. They're not coming back. I got to figure things out.” They just got into unto themselves. Then after the war was over, they were returned to their families, but they had a very difficult time re-bonding with the families that they'd come from, because they thought that they were all gone forever, and they had grieved it, let it go.

I think that part of the whole British stiff upper lip has to do with the toughness that this generation of children developed in grieving the loss of their parents and the separation. When we talk about attachment in an adult relationship, we're talking about the bonds with connection that form over time with the people that we love. Those bonds have many strands and they're built over time. They're like a rope that has many strands. There are certain people in close relationships, like the kids that came home who are afraid of connecting and bonding. We call those folks, they have an avoidant attachment pattern and they're incredibly concerned about being overwhelmed by emotion, or engulfed, or controlled, or subsumed in the other person's world. They're very self-protected and they need a lot of space and a lot of alone time. Then there's the people who have an anxious attachment pattern and they need a lot of connection and a lot of reassurance.

[0:16:08] KM: For the same reasons?

[0:16:10] CW: It’s both of them are insecure, but some people go to the, “Look, I'm obviously unto myself and life is up to me, so I'm not going to trust anyone ever again and be vulnerable ever again.”

[0:16:24] KM: Do you think divorce children are like that?

[0:16:27] CW: They can be.

[0:16:27] KM: Children from divorced families?

[0:16:30] CW: Yes, they can be. But it's interesting that they also can go into the anxious, insecure category, where they're forever looking for someone that they can trust, but concerned that it's not going to work out.

[0:16:47] KM: The swamp lands of love.

[0:16:49] CW: Yes, the swamp lands of love.

[0:16:49] KM: What does that mean?

[0:16:51] CW: The swamp lands of love are the tactics and strategies that people use to try to get back to that early stage of limerence.

[0:17:03] KM: Limerence.

[0:17:04] CW: They're trying to get back to that magical time. They do all sorts of things. They complain. They nag. They criticize. They judge. They withdraw out of self-protection if they're someone with a more avoidant pattern.

[0:17:23] GM: Is this the like, “You never take me anywhere anymore” attitude?

[0:17:27] CW: Yes. “You used to be wonderful. We used to have sex all the time, now we never have sex. You obviously are not interested in me anymore.” But with that kind of a tone.

[0:17:37] GM: Yeah, sure.

[0:17:38] KM: The swamp lands of love answers a question that I had later in the podcast about why we're the meanest to the people we love the most.

[0:17:48] CW: Yes, we often – There's two reasons. Number one, if it's a super safe relationship and we feel secure in the love, we can actually be our worst selves, and they'll still stick around. That's an awful thing, because we should show up as our best selves with the people we love. Sometimes people are like, “I can't do this at the office, but I can sure do it at home.” I can throw that two-year-old hissy fit here. The other thing is that –

[0:18:17] KM: We're in the swamp lands, and we want to get back to where we were and we nag them to get back there.

[0:18:22] CW: Yes, and we’re vulnerable.

[0:18:23] KM: Oh, interesting.

[0:18:24] CW: We're trying to do anything we can think of and we're nagging.

[0:18:27] KM: All right, last one in the part one, and then we’re going on to a break, misbegotten solutions.

[0:18:33] CW: Yes. Those are some of the strategies that I was just talking about, where the swamp lands are a place of confusion.

[0:18:42] KM: Then the miss begotten solutions are where you make errors in trying to find those solutions.

[0:18:47] CW: You actually do things that only make matters worse.

[0:18:49] KM: Yeah, everybody does that. This is a great place to take a break. When we come back, we'll continue our conversation with Dr. Chelsea Wakefield. Still to come, is it possible to find the love that will last a lifetime? Why does passion fade? We talked about that a little bit, but we're going to talk some more about it, and how to solve it. And what does it mean to love and what does it require of us? We’ll be right back after the break.

[BREAK]

[0:19:12] GM: You're listening to Up in Your Business with Kerry McCoy, a production of flagandbanner.com. Over 40 years ago, with only $400, Kerry founded Arkansas Flag and Banner. During the last five decades, the business has grown and changed, along with Kerry's experience and leadership knowledge. In 1995, she embraced the Internet and rebranded her company as simply flagandbanner.com. In 2004, she became an early blogger. Since then, she has founded the non-profit Friends of Dreamland Ballroom, began publishing her magazine, Brave, and in 2016, branched out into this very radio show, YouTube channel, and podcast.

In 2021, FlagAndBanner expanded to a satellite office in Miami, Florida, where first generation immigrants keep the art of sewing alive and flags made in America. Telling American made stories, selling American made flags, the flagandbanner.com.

[INTERVIEW CONTINUED]

[0:20:07] KM: We're speaking today with Dr. Chelsea Wakefield. She is the associate professor at the Department of Psychiatry at UAMS in Little Rock, Arkansas. She is called the go-to couples therapist in Little Rock, Arkansas. Now, we're going to talk about why love is so important to humans. Love is so important. It is in every song. It's in every show. It's on your mind all the time. If you don't have it, you want it. If you have it, you're mad about it. Why is it so hard? Why does it cause so much suffering? Why are we so critical with the ones that we love the most?

[0:20:47] CW: Love, it can be very challenging, particularly when we enter that second phase. We go from the enchantment to the disenchantment, and then we either go into that personal and interpersonal growth, or we go into the struggle and anguish. The thing about that third phase is that it's just required of us.

[0:21:07] KM: What do you mean?

[0:21:09] CW: It is required when we get into an adult love relationship, we have to actually grow up.

[0:21:17] KM: It takes a lot of growth to stay in a relationship.

[0:21:20] CW: It sure does. That's why –

[0:21:22] KM: I can see your face. “It sure does.”

[0:21:25] CW: It does.

[0:21:25] KM: How long you've been married, Chelsea?

[0:21:27] CW: 33 years.

[0:21:28] KM: She knows.

[0:21:29] GM: She knows. Yeah.

[0:21:31] CW: I know. We went through a stage in the middle that was not so easy.

[0:21:33] KM: Everybody does.

[0:21:34] CW: Everybody does. I remember thinking that this man was just going to – he was going to be the most wonderful man forever. I've been through every phase of that.

[0:21:46] KM: I am one of the few people in my family who's divorced. People in my family, I don't know why they don't get divorced, but they don't, but I am. I'm happily married now for 30-something years, too. When do you know it's time to call uncle? I mean, it was time to call uncle with my husband, because he made it so horrible, nobody could stay. I mean, he had substance abuse problems and all kinds of stuff. You knew I can't stay, but what if it's not that horrible? I just want to tell everybody, we're great friends now and he's a great guy. But how do when you should cut bait?

[0:22:21] CW: It's a really hard question. What I encourage people to do is before they decide that the other person is such a problem, “I can't stand you anymore,” you need to do a little bit of inner work. Because a lot of what we project, and this is a really important word in relationships is projection. A lot of the problems that start in relationships start over here in me, not over there with you. It's because my early wounding, my unrealistic expectations, my immature, self-oriented demands, my inability to actually think that you're a separate person with your own inner life and your own history, and that we have to be on the same page about everything and – There's a lot of power struggles that get going in relationships.

[0:23:13] GM: I literally had that conversation with my therapist last year. That mind shift to looking inward instead of outward is revelatory.

[0:23:20] CW: It is revelatory. I call it begin within. Begin within.

[0:23:24] GM: Yeah, that's good. Begin within, mom.

[0:23:26] KM: Are you writing that down for our tagline?

[0:23:29] GM: We should.

[0:23:29] KM: Where is your pen?

[0:23:30] GM: I got it, right.

[0:23:32] CW: There's a really fancy term. I'll say it here and then I'll explain it. It's intersubjectivity. It's understanding that the people that we're with have a completely separate inner universe. They don't take the same way as we do. They don't feel the same way. They don't greet life the same way, or handle their problems. They have different histories. They have different things that matter.

[0:24:00] KM: How do you do it? How do you find all that out?

[0:24:03] CW: You activate one of the core love capacities. The whole center portion of the book is about the six love capacities. Commitment, courage, curiosity, good communication, compassion and creativity.

[0:24:22] KM: Okay, so we're going to start with commitment.

[0:24:25] CW: The commitment is to three things. This is what a lot of people don't understand. They think they're committing to a person, but you're actually committing to a process. You're committing to the process of becoming a couple, which takes courage and curiosity and communication and compassion and creativity.

[0:24:42] KM: I'm blown away by that statement.

[0:24:45] CW: You're committing to a process and you're also committing to staying present. Person, process, presence. Presence means that I'm going to stay in the game with you, regardless of how we're struggling. I'm not going to withdraw and just stonewall and wall you out. I'm going to stay with you, even though we're struggling. Person, process, presence. In order to do that, you have to have courage. That's the second love capacity. Courage is built, it's like going to the gym. You got to exercise your courage. You have to sometimes start with little things and then you build up, so that you get braver and braver.

Revealing yourself in a relationship requires a lot of courage, because once you reveal yourself, the person might say, “Oh, you're not who I thought you were, or I don't like that about you at all.” That's the differences thing. It takes a lot of courage to self-reveal.

[0:25:41] KM: And they never say that. You think they're going to say that.

[0:25:46] CW: They most often don't. Occasionally, they do.

[0:25:48] GM: Yeah. I think by the time you get to that point, you hope that they wouldn't.

[0:25:53] KM: If you tell me you're a murderer, I'm like, “Okay, I'm out.” But there's nothing else that you're going to tell me that I'm not going to go, “Well, we can figure that out.”

[0:26:01] CW: Well, that's because that's the kind of person you are.

[0:26:04] GM: Yeah, that's true.

[0:26:05] KM: All right. Communication is one of – after you've become curious.

[0:26:09] CW: Well, the curiosity piece is huge. Getting curious in both directions, it's like, what's going on with me that I'm getting so upset about this? Why does it matter so much to me? Whatever the problem is. I like to move the problem out, so that the problem is the problem, not the person. I think that helps a lot in relationships. It's like, it's two of you sitting on the same side of the table and saying, “We have this problem. Let's figure out together what we're going to do about this problem.” Rather than you're the problem. If you were different, we would be okay. If you would stop doing this, or start doing that, we would be okay.

[0:26:48] KM: You've made the commitment to the person process and the presence. You've had the courage to look to –

[0:26:53] CW: To stay the course.

[0:26:55] KM: You've got curiosity to dig down into yourself.

[0:26:57] CW: And what's going on with me and what's going on with you.

[0:27:00] KM: Then becomes the communication.

[0:27:03] CW: Yes. Let's talk a little bit more about communication. Because again, in this chapter, I go through the reporter's list of the who, what, when, why, where, how. If we think about who, who in me is communicating? Is it my rebel? Is it my scared little kid? Is it my healthy adult? Is it my seductress? Who's talking? What is it that I'm actually trying to accomplish here? What do I want to say? What is it before I start yacking away, or criticizing, or complaining, or crying or doing whatever it is that we do on those misbegotten solutions? What is it that I'm trying to achieve here? What's my outcome?

There's the who, what, where. There's places to have conversations and there's places not to. There's also the timing, when. A lot of the couples that I work with have conversations as they’re getting ready for bed. Actually, they have arguments.

[0:28:06] GM: Yeah. I was going to say the when and the where is, I think, the hardest thing that I deal with definitely. Like, by a long shot, never – no time ever seems like a good time, so it just never happens. I mean, is that just different for everybody? Or is it best when you wake up in the morning and you're refreshed, or over your first cup of coffee?

[0:28:24] CW: I think that when people get good at addressing issues, the when is less daunting.

[0:28:29] GM: That makes sense.

[0:28:30] CW: Because if you know that this is going to be a horrible blow up, like all the last ones, you don't want to do it ever. You're going to avoid it. If one person is having some sort of an issue and they own it for themselves, like I'm speaking for myself and there's – I have a couple different protocols in the book. One of them was developed by Polly Young-Eisendrath a long, long time ago. It's speak for yourself, listen mindfully. In other words, I'm going to say for me, this is a problem. This is why it's a problem. This is how it's impacting me. Not, you're a jerk and you need to stop doing this.

[0:29:11] KM: Never start a sentence with ‘you.’

[0:29:13] CW: Yes. If you can start all of your sentences with, “This is what's happening for me.”

[0:29:17] KM: This is how I feel.

[0:29:18] CW: This is how I feel.

[0:29:19] KM: It may not be valid, but this is how I feel.

[0:29:21] CW: Well, the thing about this is how I feel is it might be based on a misconception, or a misunderstanding. But unless you describe what it is that you're understanding, the other person doesn't know what the misunderstanding is. You have to start there. The other person needs to be able to listen patiently and deeply enough, so they really understand what the issue is. Then the premise, is this is not an edict. If I tell you, I have a problem with, I don't know, the way that you leave – the way that you put the –

[0:29:53] KM: Dishes in the dishwasher.

[0:29:54] CW: There you go. There's a good one. There's a good one. Lots of people argue about that.

[0:29:57] KM: Yeah, I know.

[0:29:59] CW: Then that's actually my problem. Now we can talk about it, and you can say, “Oh, okay. Well, how do you prefer to have them loaded?” Or you can say, “Well, then you can load the dishwasher.” Which is unfortunately, one of the ways of solving a problem. If it's a problem for me and not for you, then maybe it's my problem. No. Then talking about possible solutions, I think, people should never start a complaint without a suggestion for what they think would solve it.

[0:30:26] KM: Okay. Compassion and creativity, the last ones. To get creative.

[0:30:32] CW: Compassion. What's really interesting about compassion is Kristin Neff is a researcher. She's devoted her entire career to studying compassion. What she's found is that people who have compassion for themselves actually are more accountable. They're more accountable.

[0:30:48] KM: Which just seems backwards.

[0:30:49] CW: Doesn't it seem backwards? Like, if I have more compassion. But it's different than giving myself a pass and saying, “Well, I'm this this way, because I had a terrible childhood.” It's like, yeah, I can have compassion for the little kid inside of me that is still in me and wounded. However, I'm an adult now. I need to do my personal work, so I can show up in the relationship like a healthy adult and be worth relating to. Then I can – if occasionally I fall back, I can have compassion for that. I can have compassion for you, because I know that none of us gets out of childhood alive. We all have our wounds. I can learn a little bit more about, sometimes people wander through relationships. It's like you hit a landmine. It's like, “Whoa, what just happened?”

[0:31:35] KM: What's your wound?

[0:31:36] CW: What's my wound?

[0:31:37] KM: From childhood. Has anybody ever asked you that?

[0:31:39] CW: No. No one's ever asked me that. It’s something I delve in. I'll tell you something that I just recently discovered though, because I'm a super high achiever and a really hard worker.

[0:31:54] GM: Yeah, three books. I would say so.

[0:31:57] CW: I just started to really delve into what's driving that, because I would like to have a little bit more being time, a little bit more rest, a little bit more fun, a little bit more just being in the kitchen, making soup. Why is it that when I'm in the kitchen chopping vegetables and making soup, I feel a little anxious, like I should be getting something done? I've been looking at that. But here's the thing is that I have an intergenerational inheritance of the must.

[0:32:27] KM: What’s that mean?

[0:32:28] CW: To whom much is given, much is expected. It's like, if you've got gifts to give the world, you better get out there and give them. You better give of yourself. Be of service. It's an inheritance from my family lineage.

[0:32:43] KM: Was your daddy a doctor?

[0:32:45] CW: No. My father had a lot of problems.

[0:32:48] KM: Oh, let's unpack that.

[0:32:50] GM: Yeah.

[0:32:52] CW: He was a failed entrepreneur, who was married to my very stable teacher mother.

[0:32:58] KM: Oh, there's the teacher.

[0:32:59] CW: Yeah, yeah. I definitely have a lot of archetype of the teacher in me.

[0:33:04] KM: Did you tell me that he went to his priest for help?

[0:33:07] CW: Well, that's a whole other story, because we could –

[0:33:10] KM: Don’t go to your priest for help?

[0:33:12] CW: Well, no. I'm not saying that. I have a master's degree and a PhD and my master's thesis was on clergy as a community mental health resource and what a terrible job they often do. Because when my father had a post-heart attack depression, which is not uncommon for many who have heart attacks –

[0:33:33] KM: That’s right.

[0:33:34] GM: He went to his priest.

[0:33:35] CW: He went to his minister, actually, because he was not Episcopalian, or Catholic, like all the rest of us. The minister said to him, “I think you have unconfessed sin in your life.”

[0:33:49] GM: Oh, boy.

[0:33:51] CW: He went home and combed through everything he could figure out. He was still depressed. What actually ended up happening is after a year of sitting in a chair being depressed, he walked out on the marriage, and the marriage ended and then he really spun. I spent –

[0:34:06] KM: He ended up killing himself?

[0:34:07] CW: He did not kill himself, but he sure went through a lot of women.

[0:34:12] KM: Oh, he's in that – what's that stage called? He's in the enchantment state.

[0:34:16] CW: My father was very charming and women loved him.

[0:34:21] GM: There you go.

[0:34:23] CW: He always could find a port in the storm.

[0:34:25] KM: A port in the storm. There's a lot of women out there like me who want to fix them. We're speaking today with Dr. Chelsea Wakefield, the go-to couples therapist in Little Rock Arkansas, a nationally recognized expert in the field of couples therapy and associate professor department of psychiatry at UAMS in Little Rock Arkansas. Have I asked you, is there such a thing as a soulmate?

[0:34:52] CW: Oh, I love that question and that's such a popular idea nowadays. “I'm looking for my soulmate.” I don't actually believe in soulmates.

[0:35:01] GM: I was going to say, that's still really popular?

[0:35:04] CW: A lot of people, well, you know, young people are so disenchanted by the idea that they could ever find a soulmate that they stopped looking.

[0:35:15] KM: They don't even get married anymore.

[0:35:16] CW: I know. I know. That's –

[0:35:17] GM: Just typically young.

[0:35:19] CW: Yeah. They just don't want to repeat their parents' relationships, which –

[0:35:22] KM: There we go. The wounded child.

[0:35:24] CW: Yeah. I can understand. Most people don't want to repeat their parents' marriages. I don't even want to repeat my parents' marriages while they were married for their 29 years. I think we can become soulmates. I don't think we find a soulmate. There is a philosopher by the name of Martin Buber, B-U-B-E-R. He was an Austrian philosopher and he talked about something called the I-thou relationship, rather than the I-it relationship. If you think about that, an I-it relationship is transactional. It means, I'm doing this for you with an expectation, you'll do this for me and I want you to be who I want you to be, because I've got my boxes and you're not checking them, so you better get busy. That's that power struggle that we get into when we want others to be different so we can be okay. That's an I-it relationship.

An I-thou relationship means I actually want to understand who you are so deeply that you might even think of it at a soul level. If I am really curious about who you are over there, apart from what I want you to be, I'm going to cross the bridge into your world with honoring curiosity, true authentic curiosity, good communication, deep listening, deep listening and compassion, so I'm not going to judge you when I learn things about you. In the process of doing that, people have a kind of encounter that is almost magical. It's so amazing to see this. I do see it in my office occasionally when I see two people.

It's almost as if they forget I'm in the room, and they start to talk to each other and everything just fades and they're discovering things. They're learning and they're feeling met. It is the most beautiful thing.

[0:37:22] GM: I can say, do you just love it when that happens?

[0:37:23] CW: I do. It makes my work so worthwhile. It makes all the struggle that I sit with them, because I sit with people who are struggling a lot.

[0:37:34] KM: Nobody listens anymore.

[0:37:36] CW: No.

[0:37:38] KM: I didn't realize that I didn't listen, until in 2016 when I started this radio show. I talked over everybody that came on the radio and I realized, I don’t want to hear myself talk. I'm either talking, or waiting to talk. Nobody listens.

[0:37:57] CW: It would be the magic key for our society right now is to actually listen deeply to who other people are and what it is that they want, what they're concerned about.

[0:38:13] KM: You talked about this a little bit already. The baggage we bring to a marriage spills over and into the spaces in between us.

[0:38:20] CW: Yeah. Inevitably, because when you bond your life with another intimate partner, they become the most important person in the world. They become your primary attachment figure and it evokes a lot of vulnerability, and it also stirs up a lot of stuff that's been lying dormant since you were a little kid. You don't feel it till you're with this person so vulnerable. It causes you to say things like, “This only happens with you. I don't have this problem with my people that I work with. I don't even have this problem with my friends. It only happens with you. It must be you. You must be the problem.”

[0:38:56] KM: Well, that is a common denominator sometimes, and it sometimes is yourself. If you find it happens with a lot of different people, though. Not just with one person, but –

[0:39:06] CW: Yes.

[0:39:07] KM: - you know, if you find that you're in the same situation with a lot of different people, then you're like, “Okay, must be me.” Which brings up some issues. Does everybody have the same issues, money, fidelity, bad habits, sex, communication and old ones? Are those all the same repetitive problems that you see every time you counsel someone?

[0:39:29] CW: We have to add in-laws.

[0:39:31] KM: What'd you say?

[0:39:33] CW: We have to add in-laws to that.

[0:39:34] KM: Oh, in-laws.

[0:39:35] CW: Like, extended – they're outlaws, sometimes they're called.

[0:39:39] GM: Outlaws? Yeah, sure.

[0:39:39] CW: Yeah. And children. Children are complicating to relationships, because the whole – well, if you marry one, or –

[0:39:47] KM: If you marry somebody who's got children.

[0:39:50] CW: Just different ideas about how to raise children. Huge arguments about discipline and private versus public school and bedtimes.

[0:40:00] KM: I actually know someone that got divorced over their children.

[0:40:03] CW: Yeah. Absolutely.

[0:40:03] KM: Their children.

[0:40:06] GM: I mean, that makes sense, because you were – I think we started this interview and you said something like, “I don't know who you are anymore.” I mean, talking about the way you bring up your children is some of the deepest moral stuff that you have is trying to figure out what kind of people you want them to be.

[0:40:23] CW: Exactly.

[0:40:24] KM: Here's some of your quotes that I like. “To love deeply requires an open heart.” So nice. “Love requires us to grow. You don't know what you don't know.” That was from our first interview, which I think this book will help you find out what you don't know. “Love is one of our greatest challenges.” It's something we all want many of us push it away over and over again for a multitude of different kinds of reasons and fears. Which could be old wounds.

[0:40:59] CW: Also, lack of skills, because once you learn, I'm going to call it a protocol for how to talk to people, how to address conflict, how to figure out like, why does this matter to me? It was just asking that question. What's the root system if I'm really worked up about something? What's the history around this that is causing me to be so upset?

[0:41:21] KM: We're speaking today with Dr. Chelsea Wakefield, who is also known as the go-to couples therapist in Little Rock, Arkansas. Now, we're going to talk about the labyrinth of sexuality, my favorite subject. Talk about it. Don't be scared. You talk about this all the time.

[0:41:40] CW: I do.

[0:41:41] KM: You embarrass me, actually.

[0:41:41] CW: I do?

[0:41:42] KM: That's hard to do.

[0:41:44] CW: Okay. Well, people get into a lot of trouble around sex. Couples find it really hard to do two things, to self-free, figure out who they are as a sexual being, communicate that to a partner, and the process of self-revealing requires a lot of courage.

[0:42:06] KM: I'll say.

[0:42:08] CW: Yeah. Then the idea that if somebody reveals something about their sexuality to you and it's a little different than you, that can be a very challenging moment for both people. Because the person who just revealed it, it's like, now the cat's out of the bag, and I don't know what to do. I wish I hadn't said that. The other person might be like, “Oh, I had no idea you're into that.”

[0:42:30] KM: You're a perv.

[0:42:31] CW: Yeah. You're a pervert, or exactly something like that.

[0:42:33] KM: Well, you did talk about that in the earlier section about how sometimes when you're really, really honest, people are – don't always go well.

[0:42:41] CW: Everybody has an arousal template. A lot of times, the scripts that we have in our heads about how sex should go and what actually causes our bodies to respond are two different things.

[0:42:53] KM: What do you mean?

[0:42:54] CW: The thing about sex is that you've got to actually pay attention to how your body responds, rather than –

[0:43:01] GM: Not just do the things that you think you're supposed to be doing when it's time to have sex.

[0:43:05] KM: Women are sexual pleasers.

[0:43:08] CW: That is so true. It is one of the problems with female sexuality and it's where women get into trouble, where they lose interest in sex, because if you're just trying to be who the other person wants you to be, you're not discovering who you are. If you're just doing what the other person wants you to do, you're not really thinking about, are we co-creating a relationship, a sexual relationship that we both want to participate in? That takes a lot of communication and self-discovery and courage and curiosity and compassion and creativity.

[0:43:41] KM: How did you decide to get into sexology?

[0:43:44] CW: Well, so the truth is that I've been interested in sex for a long time.

[0:43:50] KM: Do you have a lot of boyfriends in college?

[0:43:55] CW: Kerry McCoy, we are not going to talk about all that. Not on the radio.

[0:44:01] KM: So yes.

[0:44:02] CW: I was raised in a very conservative, religious environment.

[0:44:08] KM: Those girls are the worst.

[0:44:13] CW: We spent about, I don't know how many months it was studying about the evils of sex. The more they talked about it, I was like, “This is just making me more and more curious.”

[0:44:22] GM: Right. Like every kid. Of course.

[0:44:23] CW: It's like, if this – good grief, what is it that they're forbidding us to do? I did not start my sexual exploration until I was in college. I did have a couple of boyfriends and I got off to a good start. I did not have any sexual trauma in my childhood other than church.

[0:44:46] KM: Church?

[0:44:47] CW: Well, all the teachings about the dangers of sex.

[0:44:52] GM: The sin of it all. Yeah.

[0:44:52] CW: And the sin of it all and how it was just this horrible thing. If you don't have a history of sexual trauma and if you have a good introduction with a first sexual partner that is positive, a lot of stuff takes care of itself just by those two things.

[0:45:09] KM: That's right. But one in three little girls has got a problem.

[0:45:12] CW: Yes.

[0:45:13] KM: It’s bizarre.

[0:45:14] CW: One in three women have experienced some kind of touching, or talking, or interaction with someone that they did not want and that was confusing, or disturbing. It can run the range from they're doing the dishes and their uncle's just looking at them up and down their body –

[0:45:32] KM: It’s always the uncle.

[0:45:33] CW: - and they feel slimed. Or it can be overt touching – someone sneaks into their bedroom at night and forces them to engage.

[0:45:40] GM: Sexual trauma. Yeah.

[0:45:41] CW: Yeah. Real overt.

[0:45:42] KM: What's the statistics for little boys?

[0:45:47] CW: We don't really know, but it's somewhere around one in five.

[0:45:51] KM: It's high also.

[0:45:52] CW: It's high. Oftentimes, it's framed differently for little boys. It's like, “Oh, little boys. They're sexually curious.”

[0:46:03] GM: Boys will be boys. Yeah.

[0:46:06] CW: There's a lot of things that go on, even I remember I was working with a client years ago that was a man that had been – his babysitter was giving him oral sex when he was seven years old, because she was curious about it. He did not frame that as traumatic, but it was very distressing and confusing for him growing up. Of course, it was.

[0:46:30] KM: Now he's oversexed.

[0:46:33] CW: Well, that can lead to a lot of different problems with people.

[0:46:38] KM: Sexuality.

[0:46:39] CW: What I really like to emphasize –

[0:46:41] KM: It’s the labyrinth of sexuality.

[0:46:43] CW: - is healthy sexuality. It's the idea that even if we have histories that are difficult, we can become a sexual healing team. We can replace talk, timing, touch experiences that were really harmful and overwhelming with experiences that are pleasurable and consensual and gentle and playful and not so serious. Where we're really encountering each other, again, as if we both each exist, neither one of us is play around the other person's stage.

[0:47:20] KM: You talked about pornography as a way to learn sex education today. That pornography is a big part of sex education, and it's not real and it's harmful to these children.

[0:47:33] CW: What I talked about is that pornography is terrible sex education.

[0:47:37] KM: There's too much of it. Too accessible.

[0:47:40] CW: Unfortunately, we're not countering that education with good education. When my son was in high school, the sex education that he got in school was basically, abstinence and these are all the diseases you're going to catch if you have sex.

[0:47:55] GM: That's what I got.

[0:47:56] CW: Yeah. That's a typical –

[0:47:56] GM: It’s what we all got. Yeah.

[0:47:58] CW: Typical sex education. What he got at home was his father and I sitting down and saying, sex is a really important part of life. It's really powerful. Very powerful feelings can get stirred up. You have to be responsible. The person and the timing and the place and the way that the two of you talk about these things is really important. You should never feel pressured to have sex before you feel ready, and the two of you need to talk about things, because people can get pregnant, people can get their hearts broken and it might be you. This is a powerful and wonderful thing and approach it with some reverence and maturity.

[0:48:38] KM: I told all of my children, they could not have a boyfriend, or girlfriend until they’re 17. I just said, “You can't go on a date till you're 17.” Of course, they snuck around and did it if they wanted to. Some of them didn't. It was a great out for if you didn't want to. But if they did, they were a little more cautious about it.

[0:48:55] GM: I don't remember this rule.

[0:48:56] KM: You don't? You don’t? That's because you were the one sneaking around.

[0:49:00] GM: I guess so. Yeah. I definitely didn't follow it if I was, if the rule is there.

[0:49:05] KM: No, you did not. Then, I think there's body images.

[0:49:11] CW: Oh, yeah.

[0:49:12] KM: One lady told me this one time after having my last baby, and I'm in my 40s and I'm in there trying to find some nice lingerie to try to make myself feel good. I'm just so disappointed and the lights are terrible in Victoria's Secret’s dressing room. The lady said to me – I was complaining. I was an older woman. She said, “Honey, if you're the only naked woman in the room, you're beautiful.”

[0:49:34] GM: I love that.

[0:49:36] KM: I was like, “You're right.”

[0:49:37] GM: I forgot about that.

[0:49:40] KM: There really is no body image when you're in love and you're making love.

[0:49:47] CW: And when you're with someone who's making love to you.

[0:49:50] KM: That's right.

[0:49:51] CW: One of the most wonderful things my husband ever said to me as I crested 50 was, “I love your body, because you're in it.”

[0:50:00] KM: Oh.

[0:50:01] CW: In other words, you know. If you're with a human who values you as a person, they're not as preoccupied with your stretch marks and cellulite and whether you have a little few extra pounds on you and things of that sort.

[0:50:13] KM: I know. I think women and men both need to get over their – because you're with [inaudible 0:50:18] – All right, the next one, faithfulness and fidelity. I don't know what to say about that.

[0:50:25] CW: Well, it's something that most couples don't really clearly define. Like, what feels unfaithful to me and what feels faithful? They don't actually talk about it. Then they end up wandering into situations where one of them does something that really feels like a betrayal to the other person, which might, by the way, also include things like, spending a certain amount of money on something without checking with the partner, or quitting one's job.

[0:50:50] GM: It doesn't have to be sex.

[0:50:51] CW: It doesn't have to just be sex. It can be, “Honey, I just quit my job. I just decided I don't want to do that anymore,” without talking about how we're going to navigate. It can be getting pregnant with another child when the other partner has clearly said, “I really can't deal with another child.” But unilaterally, just getting pregnant, that's a betrayal on purpose.

[0:51:13] GM: Sure.

[0:51:14] CW: I mean, these things happen, of course, by accident. But I'm talking about people that I've known that have done that on purpose.

[0:51:20] KM: Oh, yeah.

[0:51:21] CW: Anyway, so there's a lot of different betrayals. When we're talking about sexual fidelity, and of course, I have to acknowledge that we're in an era where there's a lot of conversation about open relationships and polyamory, which –

[0:51:35] KM: Oh, yeah. What's polyamory?

[0:51:37] CW: Well, polyamory has to do with being in multiple relationships at the same time openly.

[0:51:42] KM: That's just a bad boy.

[0:51:44] CW: Well, sometimes it's women who want to do this.

[0:51:46] KM: What?

[0:51:48] CW: What I say to couples that are in my office that want to do this is, let's have you two learn how to have one relationship. Then if you decide you want to have more than one relationships, you can do that without blowing everything out to smithereens.

[0:52:00] KM: Does it ever work?

[0:52:01] CW: It does work in certain instances, but I think mostly what people are doing is they're trying to solve problems that they're having in the primary relationship, or they maybe have an avoidant attachment pattern, or where they don't really want to commit and go deep with one person. It just feels better to have their eggs in more baskets, so to speak.

[0:52:22] KM: Back to that very first chapter of you're wounding where you've got attachment problems.

[0:52:28] CW: I actually have known some individuals and some groups and couples –

[0:52:35] GM: I have too.

[0:52:36] CW: - that are in these kinds of arrangements that actually works well.

[0:52:41] KM: How long have they been in that arrangement?

[0:52:42] CW: About 20 years.

[0:52:44] KM: Oh. How about you, Gray?

[0:52:45] GM: Five, six. Yeah. They're all young, so they can't have been in it for 20 years.

[0:52:50] CW: Well, and I know some folks that are much older than that, that are 50 that have been 60, that have been in those kinds of relationships.

[0:52:58] GM: You're totally right about the way that you use it. It's not a tool to fix other problems. It's an extension out of an already healthy relationship, or at least in my experience. Yeah.

[0:53:11] CW: Or, it's an acknowledgement of a dimension of the personality that is not being met, or the dimension of the sexuality that's not being met by the partner. They say, “I want you to be fulfilled and happy.”

[0:53:29] GM: Right. Again, this comes out of a good communication that has – or good courage and communication and creativity. Yeah.

[0:53:36] CW: Yeah. Exactly.

[0:53:37] GM: Yeah. All of those stuff.

[0:53:39] CW: This is a highly controversial topic that we're talking about.

[0:53:42] KM: It could be economic, too.

[0:53:44] CW: It could be economic.

[0:53:45] KM: Three people in the home is a lot better than –

[0:53:47] GM: I know a lot of people that joke about that, actually, that are my age. Three comes better than two.

[0:53:52] KM: Yeah. Yeah. You get extra money in the house.

[0:53:55] CW: Well, and divorce is expensive. If you want to co-parent, but you don't want to have a sexual relationship anymore.

[0:54:02] KM: Yeah. Let's talk about divorce and how expensive it is. It is cheaper to come see you.

[0:54:08] CW: It's really cheaper. We're not just talking about the money. We're talking about the toll that it takes. We're talking about how when you get divorced, you split up friends. I mean, it's like, this group of friends goes with you and this group of friends goes with me and this one's on your side and this one's on my side. Now, in a contentious divorce, we're talking about the toll that it takes on children, which is immense in a contentious divorce. I just am so frustrated by people who are so immature and so selfish that they carry on the war for years and years and years after the divorce, and the children are in the middle and they don't know what to do and they're torn. It's a terrible thing.

[0:54:51] KM: I am so frustrated with that, too. Is it a wounding from that person from their youth or something that they've got to be so disagreeable?

[0:54:59] CW: Usually. Yeah. Or one person was completely invested in a fairytale ideal of what they were getting involved in. Then when the other person fails to live up to their fairytale, they're enraged. They'll just spend the rest of their lives talking about what a horrible person that person is.

[0:55:18] KM: It only hurts them.

[0:55:21] CW: It hurts everybody. Yeah.

[0:55:23] KM: Impersonal dreaming.

[0:55:25] CW: Mm-hmm.

[0:55:26] KM: What's that?

[0:55:28] CW: I think it's very important for couples to dream together and have the question – This is the creativity. It's like, who do we want to be in this relationship? What do we want to co-create over the course of our being together over a number of years that we can do together that we couldn't do separately? What experiences do we want to have? Most particularly, how do we want to show up? Who do we want to be? When we talk about intimacy, intimacy is achieved by really looking deeply into the soul of the other. By sharing that and by being a deep listener who is willing to actually meet you as you are, rather than who I would like you to be. Then the two of us meet each other, and that's a very special experience that encounter.

Then dreaming together is the creativity, but it's also, it's really interesting to me when couples start to share their nighttime dreams. It's a way of getting into the inner world of the other just very benignly. Like, “I had the weirdest dream last night,” one person will say to the other. I have an example in the book, where I was alerted to the impact that something that I was saying was having on my husband, because he shared a dream with me. This was a situation where we had moved to Little Rock and he had his own office, and there was a stack of boxes against the wall in that office that had not been unpacked for five years.

[0:57:00] GM: Sure.

[0:57:03] CW: I walked in there one day and I said to him, “If something happens to you, I'm just taking these boxes to the dump.” Because obviously, they're not important enough for you to even look and see what's in them.

[0:57:14] KM: Right.

[0:57:16] CW: He was like, “Okay.” That night, this was the dream that he had. The dream he had was that there had been a festival and there were all these special buildings that were built for the festival and the bulldozers were coming to bulldoze them all down. He was running around trying to find the mayor, because he felt that the buildings could be repurposed for something. It was a waste to just bulldoze them down, but he couldn't find the mayor and it was just this terrible dream.

[0:57:45] KM: How does that relate to what you said?

[0:57:46] GM: Oh, it's the boxes.

[0:57:47] CW: Well, so I was like, “That's a really interesting dream.” I was driving to work and I thought to myself, “Oh, this is what it felt like for him, when I said, I'm just going to throw those boxes out.”

[0:57:59] KM: Did he put them away?

[0:58:01] CW: Well, I'll tell you what I did.

[0:58:02] KM: You threw them away.

[0:58:03] CW: No. I did not.

[0:58:06] GM: You bulldozed them.

[0:58:07] CW: I did something that was sacrificial, but it was an act of love.

[0:58:12] KM: My God. Right.

[0:58:13] CW: Well, I sat with him as he unpacked them.

[0:58:16] GM: That’s good.

[0:58:17] CW: Which was what he wanted. We sat there one Sunday afternoon –

[0:58:21] GM: Because you’re the mayor.

[0:58:21] CW: - box by box, we opened them up and he went through and he said, “Oh, this is this business thing that I did back in 1975.” Then he would tell me a story about that. I actually filmed some of them for posterity.

[0:58:33] KM: Then you throw them away.

[0:58:34] CW: We threw about half the stuff away, because there were things like, grocery circulars from –

[0:58:41] KM: His high school report card.

[0:58:43] CW: That sort that we did not need to keep anymore. He was willing to throw away. We got about half of it thrown away.

[0:58:49] GM: That’s great.

[0:58:50] KM: We didn't even talk about dreams. That's in the last one. We talked a little bit about dreams, but dream work is so fun. If you have never done dream work, I highly recommend you do dream work. A lot of people think it's BS. I think it's wonderful. If you learn how to study it and you learn how to – you learn about your archetypes in the dream, it can be revealing to you.

[0:59:12] CW: My first book, Negotiating the Inner Peace Treaty, is a great way to learn about dreams. I just want to define archetypes for people, because it's a confusing word. It's a little bit in the lexicon now that people hear it more. I actually heard it in a car commercial one day. But what an archetype is is it's a system of energy that has a pattern to it, that is pretty much recognizable across time and culture. The archetype of the mother, the archetype of the hero, the archetype of the wise old man, the archetype of the child.

[0:59:48] GM: The oracle, the hero, the undertake. I learned of them all in literature class in high school. Yeah. Yeah, the mother. Star Wars is a really great film to watch and point that archetypes.

[1:00:02] CW: George Lucas was a student of Jung.

[1:00:05] GM: There you go.

[1:00:06] CW: And Jung was the one who introduced the term into the language.

[1:00:09] GM: Oh, well, there you go. Yeah. Yeah.

[1:00:11] CW: It's not just a role. It's a whole system of energy. It's like, when you talk about the inner critic, when we're in inner critic energy, we're in this boring, down, mean, pound on either you or somebody else.

[1:00:28] KM: Myself.

[1:00:28] CW: Often yourself. Then when you're in the archetype of the poet, or the free spirit, it's a totally different energy. Your body feels different. Your worldview is different. That's the thing about archetypes is that –

[1:00:43] KM: Can you go through them all in one day, or do you do it as your life progresses, you change from things?

[1:00:51] CW: Well, so your profile would change over the course of a lifetime. Over the course of a day, you probably move in and out of several of them, depending on your, again, your roles, or maybe you're having a good day and then somebody calls you and yells at you and all of a sudden, you feel like a little kid. Now you're in a young person, young child archetype. Then you snap out of it and you say, “I'm going to go take on the world.” Now you're in your heroic.

[1:01:24] KM: When we were talking about sexuality a minute ago, I remember your book had three – had petals and it had three types of – it was a lot about women and it had three types of women's sexual roles. There was the seductress, the pleaser, the –

[1:01:41] CW: Let me go over this, because there were four.

[1:01:43] KM: Oh, there were four.

[1:01:44] CW: There were four petals and there was a bright side of that and a shadow side of that. In other words, if you are inherently a romantic, then you can become easily a wounded romantic, or demanding princess. Those are the shadow aspects of the romantic. The nurturers, what you're talking about, the nurturers tend to be pleasers. They want to take care of people, and sexual nurturers. There's ways of being a sexual nurture, where you're just having duty sex, which is the shadow side, or you can just be like an earth mother, where you're just warmly sharing your body, this experience with another person in a very earthy grounded way. That's more of a positive aspect of the nurture.

The seductress can be very playful, very inviting, very evocative. She can also have a shadow side where you've got sex addiction, you've got the home wrecker, you've got somebody who's actually using sex for revenge, that aspect of it. Then you have the mystic, the element of it, where for some people, sex is a kind of a meditation. It's an element of their spirituality. The dark side of that is if you're so pure, you can't engage in anything earthly, so you're of no earthly good and you abjure all sexuality, because you're so holy that you can't even imagine engaging in anything that would be that earthy, that embodied.

[1:03:26] KM: Having loved talking to you. We're going to wrap it up with one we've already talked about. It's the last chapter and it's the one we all want to get to, and you've already talked about it twice. I'm going to have you say it again. It's the soulful relationship that you get to through –

[1:03:42] CW: The labyrinth of love.

[1:03:43] KM: Well, there you go. Through listening deeply, caring about the other person. What were – listening deeply and –

[1:03:51] CW: Doing your personal work. Begin within. Do your personal work. Be clear about who you are and start co-creating a relationship with another human being, who is a different person than you. Probably not who you expected them to be at the very start.

[1:04:09] KM: Oh, how fun. If we get to air the show in time, you've got a workshop coming up that's affordable to a lot of people. When's the work? Tell us when the workshop is.

[1:04:19] CW: The workshop is The Luminous Woman Weekend. It's a women's exploration weekend where we get to look at our inner cast of characters and the archetypal energies we've inhabited and look at dimensions of self that are waiting to be born and waiting to be integrated, so that the life can be more full and fulfilling. That's April 19th through 21st. You can find out more information about it on my website.

[1:04:44] KM: What's your website?

[1:04:45] CW: Chelseawakefield.com.

[1:04:47] KM: We'll put it on Arkansas flagandbanner. We'll put it up –

[1:04:49] GM: On the show page.

[1:04:50] KM: - on the show page. Yeah.

[1:04:51] CW: I also have a recorded program on that called Love Strategies for Stronger Relationships, which is a program you can purchase and go through with your partner.

[1:04:59] KM: Oh, if you can't do the weekend. Yeah.

[1:05:02] CW: Well, that's not The Luminous Woman Weekend, but that is a relationship oriented. Love Strategies for Stronger Relationships is under programs. They've got the luminous woman and they've got other things that I'm offering in terms of these.

[1:05:15] KM: All of these is at chelseawakefield.com.

[1:05:18] CW: Yeah. Or sign up for my mailing list.

[1:05:21] KM: How do you get your book?

[1:05:23] CW: You can purchase my book just about any place you can.

[1:05:25] KM: Really? Amazon?

[1:05:26] CW: You can get it on Amazon. You can get it at Barnes & Nobles online, or you can order it at the bookstore, at your local bookstore, you can order it. By the way, one of the things that I have on my website is an evaluation of your six love capacities.

[1:05:42] KM: Ooh.

[1:05:43] CW: When you sign up for my newsletter, you get to download that capacity evaluation and you can say, “Well, how am I doing?”

[1:05:49] KM: Oh, we need to sign up for the newsletter. How often do you do? Once a month?

[1:05:53] CW: Well, that's permanently up there, but I also, if you sign up – you're talking about my newsletter. My newsletter comes out about once a month, it's called Leaning into Love. I usually have a topic and often, I record a little video to share about some little golden nugget about how to lean into love.

[1:06:13] KM: Everybody needs to do that. Go sign up for Chelsea's newsletter at chelseawakefield.com, take her little test, the six love – what'd you call it, the six?

[1:06:23] CW: The Six Love Capacities. Some questions. How are you doing?

[1:06:27] KM: I think that's great. I always love talking to you. We could talk forever.

[1:06:32] CW: If you want to register for the luminous one weekend, then that's all on the website. Also, if you miss this weekend, but you'd like to be on the mailing list for a future one, then I have a contact link, just email me and I'll make sure and put you on a special list to let you know about future offerings.

[1:06:48] KM: You love helping people.

[1:06:49] GM: This isn't your first one, right? You’ve done it before.

[1:06:50] CW: No. I've been doing the luminous woman weekend for almost 15 years.

[1:06:54] GM: Oh, fabulous.

[1:06:55] KM: I've done it one weekend.

[1:06:56] CW: Yeah. You did.

[1:06:57] KM: It was fun. Just get away from everybody for a weekend and just go out there and be with a bunch of women. Young women, mostly. I really enjoyed it and you're out in the nature. It's at Ferncliffe.

[1:07:07] CW: Well, this one's going to be at my office in Plaza West. We have a really lovely conference room downstairs.

[1:07:12] KM: Oh, there you go. Thank you for all the work you do, really and truly. It is so fantastic.

[1:07:19] CW: Thank you.

[1:07:19] KM: I'm glad you're so motivated. It's your mission. Son Gray picked this out for you. Tell her why you picked this out for her as your gift.

[1:07:26] GM: We've already given Chelsea a desk set, because you've been here before. You don't need more flags on your desk. But since you're a relationship and sex therapist, I thought a little reusable shopping bag.

[1:07:39] KM: Don't take that open. She'll never get it back in there.

[1:07:41] GM: You don't want to. All right. It's a reusable shopping bag that you can fold back up and put back in the zipper.

[1:07:45] KM: Supposedly.

[1:07:47] GM: Yes, supposedly. Since you're a couples therapists, I thought birds and the bees.

[1:07:51] CW: Oh, great.

[1:07:52] GM: It has a little bee on it. Yeah.

[1:07:54] CW: I love it. Thank you so much.

[1:07:55] KM: I need one of those. Gray’s has got a handle. I can hang it on something in my car and take it in there.

[1:07:59] GM: It's super convenient. I like it a lot.

[1:08:01] KM: Birds and the bees. Very good. To our listeners, this show was recorded in the historical Taborian Hall in Downtown Little Rock, Arkansas, and made possible by the good works of flagandbanner.com. Mr. Tom Wood, our audio engineer, Mr. Jonathan Hankins, our videographer, daughter, Miss Meghan Pittman, production manager, and my co-host, Grady McCoy IV, son Gray.

We would like to thank you for spending time with us. We hope you've heard or learned something that's been inspiring or enlightening, and I'm sure you have. That it, whatever it is, will help you up your business, your independence, your love life, and all of your life. I'm Kerry McCoy, and I'll see you next time on Up in Your Business. Until then, be brave and keep it up.

[END OF INTERVIEW]

[1:08:47] GM: You've been listening to Up in Your Business with Kerry McCoy. For links to resources you heard discussed on today's show, go to flagandbander.com, select our podcast, and choose today's guest. If you'd like to sponsor this show or any show, email me, gray@flagandbander.com.

All interviews are recorded and posted the following week. Stay informed of exciting upcoming guests by subscribing to our YouTube channel or podcast wherever you like to listen. Kerry's goal is simple, to help you live the American dream.

[1:09:17] KM: Chelsea, you want to say hi to Tom?

[1:09:18] CW: Hi, Tom Wood. I'm so happy to find you again. I have heard you on the radio with your wonderful music show, but I remember the two interviews that we did when you were over at iHeart, and I'm glad that you're still out there and involved in the world.

[1:09:32] KM: He is our guy. I know, Tom, she sat down and she goes, “Tom Wood? I know Tom Wood.” I said, “Everybody knows Tom Wood.” All right, thanks guys.

[END]

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