Interview: The Mental Illness Happy Hour

A sampling of what Paul Gilmartin and I talked about in this week’s episode of Mental Illness Happy Hour:

Sexless marriages: “You’re dealing with your massive burden of emotional labor, plus the societal burden of being skinny, and beautiful, and hairless, and eternally nineteen years old, while also tiptoeing around egos. Of COURSE you don’t want to sleep with your husband. Under what circumstances is that sexy or fun?”

How to talk to your young sons about toxic masculinity: “You are not bad. The culture surrounding straight white masculinity has become toxic, and part of your job is to be an example of the opposite kind of man.”

The role that shame plays in our current cultural moment: “Shame, as a selling point, does not work. Fear does not work. Empathy, conversation, listening: That’s what works.”

Being a socially anxious person during a pandemic: “I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to function in a bar, ever again. Are you kidding me? Surrounded by new people, making small talk…that part of my brain has been taken out.”

Control issues and conditional love: “I learned that there was a way that I could act in order to get love, or approval, that didn’t necessarily have anything to do with how I wanted to act, or how I felt.”

Also why I dated obsessively right after getting divorced (even though I knew I shouldn’t), the importance of saying sorry to your kids, and couples counseling, plus about a thousand other things. So you could say we covered some ground.

This is one of my all-time favorite podcasts to appear on; Paul somehow manages to turn the interviews into full-on therapy sessions, and I always end up getting way personal – and usually coming to some big realizations.

The interview starts around the 16:30 mark; click here to listen.

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