He may not physically be cheating on you, but his penchant for “mentoring” young women — on at least four occasions that you know of — is tantamount to having multiple emotional affairs. He’s a good father and a mostly considerate partner, but the fact that these overly intense relationships with other women continue in spite of your protests makes you wonder if your marriage is worth saving. What should you do? We’ll try to find an answer to this and more here on Feedback Friday!
And in case you didn’t already know it, Jordan Harbinger (@JordanHarbinger) and Gabriel Mizrahi (@GabeMizrahi) banter and take your comments and questions for Feedback Friday right here every week! If you want us to answer your question, register your feedback, or tell your story on one of our upcoming weekly Feedback Friday episodes, drop us a line at email@example.com. Now let’s dive in!
On This Week’s Feedback Friday, We Discuss:
- While it never turns physical, does your husband’s tendency to get emotionally involved with young women endanger your marriage?
- Does your new boss need to know the details about how you overcame the obstacles presented by your former, toxic boss to land a better position at the company the day before you were supposed to be fired? [Thanks to executive coach and From Start-Up to Grown-Up author Alisa Cohn for helping us field this one!]
- You and your child are moving overseas to be with your fiancé, but your family and friends at home all want you to stay. How can enjoy the next chapter of your life without feeling guilty about turning the page on your old one?
- Should you ask your unreliable, drug-addicted sister to be a bridesmaid at your wedding and prepare for disappointment when she doesn’t show up, or do you commit the unforgivable offense of not inviting her at all and risk being cut out of her life forever?
- Are you strong, self-made, and independent without the need for a significant other to cramp your lifestyle, or really just a hopeless romantic who’s desperate for love and attention but unsure how to get it without losing that hard-won independence?
- Have any questions, comments, or stories you’d like to share with us? Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org!
- Connect with Jordan on Twitter at @JordanHarbinger and Instagram at @jordanharbinger.
- Connect with Gabriel on Twitter at @GabeMizrahi.
Like this show? Please leave us a review here — even one sentence helps! Consider leaving your Twitter handle so we can thank you personally!
Please Scroll Down for Featured Resources and Transcript!
Please note that some of the links on this page (books, movies, music, etc.) lead to affiliate programs for which The Jordan Harbinger Show receives compensation. It’s just one of the ways we keep the lights on around here. Thank you for your support!
This Episode Is Sponsored By:
- BetterHelp: Get 10% off your first month at betterhelp.com/jordan
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Have you heard our interview with Yuriy Matsarsky, a Ukrainian journalist turned civilian fighter against the Russian invasion? Catch up with episode 638: Yuriy Matsarsky | Fighting for Ukraine here!
Resources from This Episode:
- Matthew Campbell | Examining Global Shipping’s Grim Underbelly | Jordan Harbinger
- Ryan Holiday | Discipline is Destiny (Live from Los Angeles) | Jordan Harbinger
- What You Need to Know About Emotional Affairs | Verywell Mind
- Six-Minute Networking
- From Start-Up to Grown-Up: Grow Your Leadership to Grow Your Business by Alisa Cohn | Amazon
- From Start-Up to Grown-Up Podcast with Alisa Cohn
- 5 Scripts for Delicate Conversations | Alisa Cohn
- Moving Away from Family: Overcoming Guilt, Anxiety, and Sadness | Lasting the Distance
- Al-Anon Family Groups
- 11 Ways to Build Dating Confidence | Psychology Today
741: Is Marriage Impaired by Emotional Affairs? | Feedback Friday
[00:00:00] Jordan Harbinger: Welcome to Feedback Friday. I'm your host, Jordan Harbinger. As always, I'm here with Feedback Friday producer the excavator, helping me sift through the substrata of your subconscious, Gabriel Mizrahi. On The Jordan Harbinger Show, we decode the stories, secrets, and skills of the world's most fascinating people and turn their wisdom into practical advice that you can use to impact your own life and those around you. We want to help you see the Matrix when it comes to how these amazing people think and behave, and our mission is to help you become a better informed, more critical thinker so you can get a much deeper understanding of how the world works and make sense of what's really happening even inside your own mind.
[00:00:40] If you're new to the show on Fridays, that's today, we give advice to you. We answer listener questions. The rest of the week, we have long-form interviews and conversations with a variety of really incredible folks, from spies to CEOs, athletes to authors, thinkers to performers.
[00:00:54] This week, Matthew Campbell on all kinds of just wild crime and fraud that happens on the ocean, in the open ocean. If you've ever wondered about the opaque world of ships and shipping, what goes on, what can go wrong, sometimes goes wrong on purpose, this episode is for you. I thought it was fascinating look behind the curtain. The shipping world really runs our lives in many ways and I never think about it because we never see it and we dive into a lot of that stuff. I just never heard any of it before, which is quite fascinating.
[00:01:22] Also, my live show with Ryan Holiday that we recorded in Los Angeles a few months ago. That is finally up as Thursday's episode. This was so much fun. It went really, really well. And it was quite a different vibe than our usual show. So I think you'll enjoy that one as well. Make sure you've had to listen to everything that we created for you here this week or a few months ago in the case of the live show.
[00:01:43] Before we dive in, Gabe, I just got back from Turkey, as you know.
[00:01:47] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:01:47] Jordan Harbinger: Istanbul really great town. We'll talk more about that trip at some point because there were some scams and things like that, that happened.
[00:01:54] Gabriel Mizrahi: Ooh.
[00:01:54] Jordan Harbinger: That I think are pretty fascinating—
[00:01:56] Gabriel Mizrahi: Nice.
[00:01:56] Jordan Harbinger: That people can learn from. And also, Turkish food is the best, but I won't be talking too much about that. We're jet lagged, right? It's 10 hours ahead of where we are. And this morning Jen's like, "How'd you sleep?" So if your wife or partner who has kids or was pregnant, if they ever ask you how you slept, jet lag or no, do not answer that question. It is a trap. Just remain silent. And maybe ask them how they slept, but better, just pretend you didn't hear anything and maybe run as far away as you can get.
[00:02:29] Gabriel Mizrahi: Nothing good is going to come out of that question. No.
[00:02:31] Jordan Harbinger: You're just opening a Pandora's box. You cannot put that toothpaste back in the sleep tube.
[00:02:37] Gabriel Mizrahi: Has anyone ever asked their partner, "How'd you sleep" when they slept really well?
[00:02:41] Jordan Harbinger: They're like, "I slept so well." "How did you sleep?" No, it's, "I've been up since two o'clock in the morning I'll have, you know."
[00:02:47] As always, we've got some fun questions and some doozies. I cannot wait to dive in. Gabe, what's the first thing out of the mailbag?
[00:02:53] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hey, Jordan and Gabe. Seven years ago, 31 years into our marriage, my husband met a local female media celebrity and developed a fast friendship with her. I actually encouraged this new friendship. They genuinely seemed interested in each other's work, and it wasn't unusual for us to have close work friends of the opposite gender. As you can imagine, I was stunned to discover that their fast friendship had evolved within three weeks into an intense emotional and cyber-sexual affair. I was devastated, shaken, and deeply hurt. Once I confronted him, my husband gave up the relationship. Reluctantly at first because in his opinion, she was sad and lonely, and he was afraid of making her feel worse. He and I then worked over the next couple of years to rebuild. I realize now that one of the reasons our recovery took so long was that my husband lacks natural empathy for me and that his shame over what had happened often got in the way of my needs being addressed. I spent a lot of time being gaslit and shut down by his anger. It took a lot of work to recover. After a period of calm and reconciliation, I'm now struggling again with a series of relationships my husband has had with women for the last 18 months. The first was with a young artist in her 20s. In my view, he became overly involved with her. Driving her home, meeting her mother, going to lunches. She had a difficult relationship with her father and he said he felt sorry for her. I had a meltdown, and he very reluctantly stopped contact with her. The next one was a woman in her late 30s who was having marriage problems. They spoke daily over six months. She knew all about his affair, and when I finally met her, the pity she had in her eyes for me was unforgettable. I told him I thought that they were overly intimate for colleagues, and after months of arguing, he cooled the relationship for my sake. The latest woman is another 20-something, he's mentoring for 20 minutes to an hour every day. She's new to his business without formal training and education, and he believes he's supporting her development. I feel worn out by addressing the same theme again and again, overly intense relationships with other women. And today, I wonder if we might finally have reached the end of the road. Prior to his first affair, I never questioned his relationships with anyone. I trusted him almost blindly, which I now realize was naive of me. I have several relationships with male colleagues, but we don't talk for hours and we don't share everything about our personal lives. He has these types of friendships too, and I'm absolutely supportive of them. It's these overly intense ones in which I see him trying to fill something in himself and in these women that set off alarm bells for me. Apart from these relationships, though, he's a good dad and grandfather and mostly considerate partner. But what do you guys make of all this? What should I do? Signed, A Woe Be Gone Wife Watching Her Bo Be Drawn Thrice.
[00:05:45] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, slow clap for that sign off, Gabe. I'm not even going to quibble with the fact that he got involved with four women, not three. I'm just proud of you for that woe be gone/bo be drawn rhyme.
[00:05:56] Gabriel Mizrahi: Thank you. Thank you. I appreciate that.
[00:05:58] Jordan Harbinger: I see that poetry minor paying off.
[00:06:00] Gabriel Mizrahi: It was an English minor, but I appreciate it. Yeah.
[00:06:03] Jordan Harbinger: Oh yeah. Hey, after that sign off, it was officially not a total waste of money.
[00:06:07] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah, just partly a waste of money.
[00:06:09] Jordan Harbinger: So this is quite a situation. First of all, I'm really sorry that you and your husband have been struggling with this, and for so long. I can hear how hurtful and confusing it is to stand by and watch him create these. I don't know what to call them. Overly intimate friendships, emotional affairs, entanglements, in addition to the cybersex incident, which sounds like the one relationship where he did clearly cross a line. This has got to be hard, especially after all the work you guys have done to repair your marriage. Now, finding out your husband's been carrying on with some local media celebrity.
[00:06:43] And by the way, Gabe, I am dying—
[00:06:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: Who is it?
[00:06:45] Jordan Harbinger: —to know who that was. Yeah. I have an image of him sending cringy sexts to the weather girl on channel nine or something.
[00:06:52] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah, totally texting shirtless selfies to the drive-time DJ on some local radio station or whatever.
[00:06:57] Jordan Harbinger: Exactly. Haley Harlow in the mornings on WDTF.
[00:07:01] But then to watch him get ambiguously involved with three more women.
[00:07:05] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:07:06] Jordan Harbinger: I mean, look, the guy is obviously allowed to have friends.
[00:07:08] Gabriel Mizrahi: Sure.
[00:07:08] Jordan Harbinger: You've encouraged him to have friends. There's nothing wrong with a guy mentoring a woman or being friends with her whatsoever, but given his history, what they're doing together, it does sound like something else is going on here. Doesn't it, Gabe?
[00:07:21] Gabriel Mizrahi: Well, when she said that she sees him trying to fill something in himself and in these women—
[00:07:26] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:07:26] Gabriel Mizrahi: —I think she hit the nail on the head there.
[00:07:29] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, he is trying to fill something in those women. All right.
[00:07:32] Gabriel Mizrahi: Gross.
[00:07:32] Jordan Harbinger: Ba-dum-tss. These relationships, they're obviously fulfilling some kind of function for him. Maybe to make him feel needed or useful or powerful, or maybe to have some emotional intimacy with other people outside of his marriage. Clearly, these relationships are meeting certain needs of his, and to your point, they're fulfilling a need for these women too. The one thing they all have in common is that they're lost or struggling in some way. One has father issues, one has marriage problems, one has no formal training or education, so she's probably got this massive bout of like self-confidence, whatever issues. And your husband is probably stepping into a number of roles with them — mentor, boss, friend, dad, lover, or potential lover. So it's a little sketch. "Yes, mentor you for an hour every day and talk about your dad or your marriage, and then go to lunch and then drive you home and meet your mom. But it's all okay, nothing weird going on here. It's just, It's mentoring."
[00:08:32] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right. Yeah. The mentoring could be a sort of Trojan horse for another emotional affair. But the thing is there's a version of these friendships that could be very fulfilling to him and fair to his wife. I think what that would look like in practice is. "I don't hide my friendship with you from my wife."
[00:08:48] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:08:48] Gabriel Mizrahi: "I'm not becoming, you know, like a pseudo partner to you, and I don't deprive my wife of her needs because I'm spending all of this time with you."
[00:08:57] Jordan Harbinger: Of course, boundaries, expectations, definitions, right?
[00:09:01] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah, exactly. It's not that he's striking up friendships with women. That's inherently the problem. It seems to be how he's relating to them, especially when his wife is going, "I don't want to control you, but this is making me a little uncomfortable."
[00:09:14] Jordan Harbinger: Exactly, and that's actually what worries me the most, that her husband doesn't seem to understand how these relationships are operating, or if he does, he just doesn't seem to care.
[00:09:25] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:09:25] Jordan Harbinger: Until he gets a handle on that. I don't see how this situation will ever change.
[00:09:30] Gabriel Mizrahi: That's exactly right. I mean, he needs to understand what he's looking for in these other relationships that he feels he can't find in his marriage or maybe in more appropriate friendships, or he needs to decide if this marriage still works for him, if he feels that it's holding him back from the kinds of relationships he wants to pursue.
[00:09:47] Jordan Harbinger: Agreed. Although I hesitate to say, you know, get divorced, it's over. Let your husband carry on with all these women if that's what he wants, because—
[00:09:55] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:09:55] Jordan Harbinger: Well, first of all, they've been together for 38 years.
[00:09:58] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right.
[00:09:58] Jordan Harbinger: They've got a ton of history. They have children, they have grandchildren. That's a huge decision. And second, she says he's a good dad and a good grandfather, and a mostly considerate partner.
[00:10:10] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right. Yeah. Emphasis on mostly.
[00:10:12] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Obviously these affairs, they loom large right now, and that's what they are. They are affairs. I think we should call us beta spade on this one.
[00:10:19] Gabriel Mizrahi: Ah, this is so hard because we don't know exactly what is going on with these women.
[00:10:23] Jordan Harbinger: But emotional affairs—
[00:10:24] Gabriel Mizrahi: Are sort of affairs and—
[00:10:26] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:10:27] Gabriel Mizrahi: But I also wonder if these three new women would be as problematic for his wife if he hadn't really crossed a line clearly in a sexual way with the first one.
[00:10:36] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:10:36] Gabriel Mizrahi: I want to say that he's free to mentor whomever he wants and to have friendships with whomever he wants but there's something about it that isn't sitting right with her and that suggests, yeah, that there is something sort of questionable happening.
[00:10:48] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:10:48] Gabriel Mizrahi: But honestly, it's not just these relationships, that's the problem. It's how he treats his wife. Like when they worked on things, he spent a lot of time denying what he did or—
[00:10:56] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:10:56] Gabriel Mizrahi: —denying her experience. She says that he shut her down. His shame made it hard to appreciate her needs. And her big conclusion from that period was that her husband "lacks natural empathy for me."
[00:11:07] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. I thought that was an interesting way to put it, to lack natural empathy for one person in particular.
[00:11:13] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah. Well, it's extra interesting given how overly empathic he seems to be toward the women he's involved with, like woman number one, Haley Harlow in the mornings. When his wife confronted him about the affair, he reluctantly gave the relationship up because he was afraid of making her even sadder and more lonely. And then with woman number two, the young artist, right? He said he felt sorry for her. He's taking her to lunch. He's meeting her mother. With the third woman, the one who's having marriage problems. He's helping her with a relationship. And then with the most recent woman, the 20-something he's mentoring, he seems to care a lot about her education, her development. So it sounds to me like Mr. Lacks Natural Empathy has a lot of empathy for everybody except his wife.
[00:11:55] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Right. I hate to say this. I really don't mean to be insensitive, but when she said, "My husband lacks natural empathy for me," I was like, that sounds a lot like saying my husband doesn't seem to care very much about me, or he's just not honoring their relationship.
[00:12:10] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah, I mean, there's more going on there.
[00:12:12] Jordan Harbinger: Mmm.
[00:12:12] Gabriel Mizrahi: So it sounds like they've worked on this for two years on their own. They made some progress but probably didn't get to the heart of the issue. And the heart of the issue is, "What needs are you trying to meet in these friendships? What is the dynamic in our marriage? How am I as your wife responding to all of this? What led us here?" This is the kind of work you usually have to do with a couples therapist because it is just so complex.
[00:12:34] Jordan Harbinger: Agreed completely. I admire them for doing so much on their own, but this is why you often need a professional.
[00:12:41] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:12:41] Jordan Harbinger: So the best advice that we can offer you is if you want to work on this marriage, take this into therapy with your husband, find someone good, and really dig into what's going on here. This wasn't one dumb affair seven years ago that brought up some stuff that you guys worked through, and then it never happened again. This is a pattern. As hard as it is to confront, I do wonder if the real question here is, "Is this marriage over? Do we have a basic respect for each other that makes working on the marriage even possible?" That's something only you guys can answer for yourselves.
[00:13:14] But it's like, Gabe, how many chances do you give someone?
[00:13:17] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah, that's the question.
[00:13:19] Jordan Harbinger: Again, I'm really sorry this is happening to you. Honestly, it hurts just to read about it. I can't even imagine living it. But now, that you're here, I do think it's important to be honest about who your husband is, what he wants, how he feels about you. And for you to get clear on what you want and how you feel about him. So I hope you get to do that. We're sending you our best thoughts. Haley Harlow in the mornings, the one he sent poorly lit bathroom selfies to, she's on her own. No best wishes for you, Haley. Good luck.
[00:13:49] And by the way, pro tip, if you take a bathroom selfie make sure you don't get the toilet in there. We've all seen those on the Internet.
[00:13:56] Gabriel Mizrahi: That's like a great staple on Reddit.
[00:13:58] Jordan Harbinger: You know who also wants an intense cyber affair with you? The amazing sponsors who support this show. We'll be right back.
[00:14:06] This episode is sponsored in part by Better Help. We all deal with the ups and downs in life, and it's very easy to get stuck in a low point for a long time. I have been there. I wish I could say I immediately sought out a therapist, but I eventually did do it and it helps just so much. I regret not doing it earlier. A therapist can help you become a better problem solver. They can make it easier to accomplish your goals no matter how big or small. Jen has been with Better Help for several months now and loves it. Her therapist will help track her goals, which is done within the Better Help app. She's even sent worksheets over for her to do. It is super convenient. You can do video sessions. You can do phone only if you want. You can text your therapist at any time. If you're thinking of giving therapy a try, Better Help is a great option. It's available worldwide in any time zone, and if you don't like your therapist, get matched with a different one. No additional charge.
[00:14:53] Jen Harbinger: When you want to be a better problem solver, therapy can get you there. Visit betterhelp.com/jordan today to get 10 percent off your first month. That's better-H-E-L-P.com/jordan.
[00:15:04] Jordan Harbinger: This episode is also sponsored by Zelle. Jen and I went on a trip to Istanbul recently and we took my brother-in-law with us. He's adventurous. He adds to the fun. We went on a food tour, a private yacht tour of the Bosphorus. We went to a hammam, which is a traditional Turkish bath where some guy who looks like the hunchback of Notre Dame slaps you with a towel among other things. Instead of having to split the bill every time, we just paid for everything and Glenn paid us back later with Zelle using his phone. When anyone sends you money or if you need to get paid back, always ask for Zelle. With Zelle, the money goes straight into your bank account and it works even if the sender bank somewhere different than you in the United States. What's great is you don't have to download another app because it's probably already in your banking apps, since it's in over 1600 different banking apps. Always double check that the sender has your correct US mobile number or email address, so the money goes to the right place, straight into your bank account. Look for Zelle in your banking app today.
[00:15:56] Thank you for listening and supporting the show. Your support of our advertisers keeps us going. To learn more and get links to all the great discounts you just heard, you can check out the sponsors for yourself, all the sponsors are at jordanharbinger.com/deals. You can also search for the sponsors using the search box on the website at jordanharbinger.com as well. So please consider supporting those who support this show.
[00:16:17] Now back to Feedback Friday.
[00:16:20] All right, next up.
[00:16:22] Gabriel Mizrahi: Dear Jordan and Gabe, I'm disabled and I've spent a decade overachieving and climbing the corporate ladder at the same company. Eventually, I found myself working under a toxic leader who hid her team's talents, which led to me being terminated during a restructuring with 90 days to find another position internally.
[00:16:39] Jordan Harbinger: Oof.
[00:16:40] Gabriel Mizrahi: I wasn't ready to leave and I didn't feel like I deserved to, so I came up with a plan. On the day before my displacement, tapping into my strong internal network, I landed an opportunity to moderate an event focused on employees with disabilities, and ended up on stage with all of the top executives at my company who had no idea that I was being let go the very next day. The event was a huge hit. So right before the executives could leave the stage, I approached them and said, "I'm really passionate about what we're doing here for people with disabilities, and I want to continue to be a constructive part of this, but I can't do that if tomorrow's my last day. Is there anything you can do?" Next thing I knew, I landed in a new role, empowering employees with disabilities with the resources they need to build their careers so they won't have to struggle like I and so many other disabled individuals have. I'm now thriving and exceeding expectations in a job I'm truly passionate about. The thing is I now want to share this story with my new boss, since he doesn't know how I got here, but I'm afraid that it'll negatively impact his view of me, given that I got here by being displaced/terminated. My professionalism and transparency helped me progress on stage that day. But will this help or hurt with my new boss? Does he need to know or should I just keep quiet and continue to succeed on this new path? Signed, Dodging the Disgrace of Being Displaced with Grace.
[00:18:05] Jordan Harbinger: Okay. I love this story.
[00:18:07] Gabriel Mizrahi: Me too.
[00:18:08] Jordan Harbinger: This is such a great example, such a great example, well, first of all, of having a strong network. Big digging the well before your thirsty energy in here and second, the importance of asking for a favor when you need it. Most people are afraid to ask for what they want, but you never know what's possible until you take a chance and ask. That's literally one of the principles in Six-Minute Networking. And third, not letting a toxic boss derail your career, not wasting time being angry or wallowing in self-pity. You just got creative and you made some moves, which I think is awesome. And finally, the power of finding an issue or a need that you're passionate about and meeting it in a way that creates value for other people.
[00:18:49] Gabriel Mizrahi: Totally.
[00:18:50] Jordan Harbinger: You are just, you're a masterclass in taking your career into your own hands, my guy. You should be really. But now you're wondering if you need to come clean, so to speak. And that's an interesting question. It's been a while since Gabe and I worked in a corporate environment, so we reached out to the one and only Alisa Cohn startup coach, investor, and author of the book From Start-up to Grown-up.
[00:19:11] And Alisa's first response was the same as ours, that all of this is really impressive. You took control of your career. You developed key skills. You're setting big goals in achieving them. It's a brilliant story. But when it comes to telling your new boss how you got here, Alisa's take was you don't really need to share this story at all if nobody's asking. You can just keep kicking butt and keep being the amazing employee who built your career and got yourself here. Simple as that.
[00:19:39] Now, if you really want to tell your boss. It's an option, you know him better than we do. But Alisa's advice, think about how this news would land with him. What's he like? Which qualities does he seem to appreciate? What kinds of things does he look down on? What are his biases? Pay attention, tease those out, and you'll have a better sense of how he'll respond to this revelation. If you think he'd admire this journey of yours, maybe even encourage your initiative, maybe that's a good reason to tell him. But if you think he might look down on somebody who networks and self-promotes a little bit, I would think twice. But I'm with Alisa, it doesn't really matter how you got here. It only matters that you're crushing it now.
[00:20:21] That said, Alisa's opinion is that anyone who hears your story should feel inspired and not dismissive. She's been coaching in the corporate world for over 20 years, and in her view, you are a role model. She can't speak for your boss, of course, but she thinks your style should be celebrated and emulated, and I completely agree. So keep shining, man, and if you don't tell your boss, maybe you save this story for the book you write one day about this whole experience.
[00:20:47] Big thanks to Alisa for weighing in here. We're going to link to Alisa's book and her podcast From Start-up to Grown-up in the show notes, along with her 5 Scripts for Delicate Conversations pdf. Highly recommend them all.
[00:20:58] By the way, you can reach us email@example.com. Please keep your emails concise. Try to use a descriptive subject line. That does make our job a whole lot easier. If there's something you're going through, any big decision that you're wrestling with, or you just need a new perspective on stuff, like life, love, work. What to do if your church pastor matches with you on a dating app and invites you to his hotel room? Whatever's got you staying up at night lately, hit us up firstname.lastname@example.org. We're here to help and we keep every email anonymous.
[00:21:27] All right, what's next?
[00:21:29] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hey, Jordan and Gabe. In a few weeks, my three-and-a-half-year-old son and I are planning to move from the United States to Switzerland to live with my fiance. Our love story started as an online friendship, which led to him flying out to meet me, which naturally evolved into a relationship. I was six months pregnant when we met, and he has never wavered in his support. My son's father has never been in the picture and has never shown interest in being a dad. So my fiance has always been my son's main father figure. The thing is, I now find myself feeling guilty for moving away from some of my family members and friends. Most of them have avoided talking about our move altogether, while friends seem to be taking it personally. Saying things like, "Why do you have to move?" or, "Well, you could just decide not to move," or, "Why can't your fiance move to the United States?" Just today, I tried talking to my seven-year-old niece about how she and my son will always be best friends, but she broke down in tears, and then my sister told me that my niece has an appointment with a grief therapist. Now, I feel like a bad aunt. I'm excited about my family's new adventure in Switzerland, but every time I talk about the move, it seems to bother people around me, but I'm afraid if I don't talk about it, it'll hit them even harder once we leave. How can I pursue this new chapter when my support system at home needs massive support? Signed, Taking Heat From the Squad for this Move Abroad.
[00:22:55] Jordan Harbinger: Well, first of all, congrats on meeting a great guy and building this very full life. I'm happy to hear that you're excited to move. It is exciting, but I also think it's quite difficult, especially for the people around you, obviously.
[00:23:08] So here's my take right off the bat. These reactions you're getting from family and friends. I think they're largely a reflection of how much they love you and your son and how sad they're going to be to live far away from you. And that's perfectly understandable. This is a big transition. They're obviously going through their own process here, which is a sort of grief. I got to say I'm especially moved by your niece's response. That part really got me.
[00:23:35] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:23:35] Jordan Harbinger: That must be a very hard thing for a young girl to come to terms with. I really feel for her and again, that speaks volumes about how much you guys mean to her. This is all very touching and appropriate. On another level, though, I can't help but feel that some of these friends and family are being a bit self-centered. Is that a fair word, Gabe? A little narrow-minded, let's say.
[00:23:56] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:23:56] Jordan Harbinger: Especially with the whole, "My daughter has to see a grief counselor because of you," thing. I mean, okay, she's allowed to feel sad. I'm all in favor of her getting the support she needs. But does it just feel a little bit manipulative coming from her mom?
[00:24:10] Gabriel Mizrahi: A little bit, yeah. Her sister's like, "Well, if you have to go to Switzerland, fine. But just FYI, Madeline has an appointment with Dr. Brand to talk about this trauma. So yeah, just wanted you to know." Like, geez, I mean, I'm sorry, Maddie's going through it, but why put that on me?" Right?
[00:24:25] Jordan Harbinger: It does feel like there's a little barb in there, just a little message, even if it's not entirely conscious, although I think it probably is. Whereas her sister could have said something like, "I'm really going to miss you. This is super hard for me, but hey, I'm so happy you found a great guy. I can see you're excited about this move. I just wish you could stay, but I also want you to pursue the life you want to live." You know, something—
[00:24:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:24:46] Jordan Harbinger: —more supportive.
[00:24:47] Gabriel Mizrahi: Supportive.
[00:24:48] Jordan Harbinger: You know what I mean? Yeah.
[00:24:49] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah. There's a way that these friends and family could be holding their sadness alongside her excitement.
[00:24:54] Jordan Harbinger: Exactly. That'd be nice. But they're struggling to do that. So my perspective is if this is the right decision for you, which it sounds like it is, then I think you need to be able to tolerate some difficult reactions from your friends and family, and trust that it's okay to prioritize yourself and your son here.
[00:25:11] Now, if you were being reckless or chasing some questionable guy or dragging your son into a chaotic situation or something, then maybe I'd say take a beat. Listen to your friends. Maybe they're trying to tell you something. But the fact is you've met a terrific guy. He sounds like a solid partner and father, you want to start a new chapter that might be hard for your friends and family but that doesn't mean you're doing anything wrong. You don't owe it to any of your friends and family to stay in the same place, to just protect their feelings, full stop.
[00:25:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm. I could not agree more, Jordan. I would also keep in mind that this is probably the hardest phase of this move — slowly saying goodbye, watching your friends' and family's reactions, and probably feeling a bit uncertain about what's waiting for you in Switzerland. In a way, this is also a grief process for you. And it's perfectly normal to be feeling some sadness and some conflict around leaving. And like Jordan said, it's very normal for the people in your life to be sad that you're leaving. This is all okay.
[00:26:14] But once you settle in, so many exciting opportunities will start to open up. You'll make new friends, your son will start school. Your friends and family can come visit you guys, which will be amazing. And by the way, I think that's also something they might be overlooking right now.
[00:26:28] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, for sure. Once they realize they have a place to stay and people to visit in Zurich or Geneva or whatever next summer, they're going to be pumped.
[00:26:35] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:26:36] Jordan Harbinger: Or they should be, anyway.
[00:26:38] Gabriel Mizrahi: Actually, that's an idea. What if you guys put that trip on the books now so you all have something to look forward to? And then when your niece is crying at the airport, when you say goodbye or whatever, you can say, "Listen, I know you're sad. I'm sad too, but in a few months you'll come visit us and you're going to see a whole new place and it's going to be so much fun. And we can do something like that every year." I bet that would really help. And it'll also teach your niece that she can survive these feelings. And that you and your son, you're not disappearing completely. You'll still be in one another's lives. You'll just be farther away.
[00:27:09] Jordan Harbinger: Love that idea, Gabe. As much as you can, I would reframe this transition as an opportunity to open their worlds up, not just as a huge loss that they're never going to recover from.
[00:27:20] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:27:20] Jordan Harbinger: This doesn't have to be abandonment. It can actually be an opportunity.
[00:27:24] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah, I like that.
[00:27:25] Jordan Harbinger: Good luck. Wishing you, your fiance, and your son the best and [Foreign Language].
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[00:29:59] And now back to Feedback Friday.
[00:30:02] All right, next up.
[00:30:04] Gabriel Mizrahi: Dear Jordan and Gabe, my sister and I have always been very close, even more so after our mother passed away two years ago. Over the past year, however, we've drifted apart because my sister has a long history of bad choices. For one thing, she's a professional at lying, stealing, manipulating, and living off of other people. She dropped out of middle school in seventh or eighth grade and hasn't been very motivated to do things herself. I also recently learned that my sister and our stepfather have been using methamphetamine together.
[00:30:35] Jordan Harbinger: What?
[00:30:36] Gabriel Mizrahi: Shortly afterward, he kicked her and her two children, four and 12 out of his house. I let her move in with me trusting that she was clean and wanted to better herself. While working full-time, my fiance and I helped my sister get things sorted out in her life. We helped her fix her car windshield, which by the way was smashed by a girl she pissed off, got her car insured, and enrolled her kids in school, but during a trip to another state to drop her son off with his father, she used meth again, and I caught her in several lies. Within two weeks, she was arrested and charged with child endangerment and possession. Her daughter was taken into state custody. Luckily, her daughter's father stepped up and got my niece. My sister spent six weeks in jail only to not show up to the custody hearing for her daughter. She lost custody and now she can't have any contact with her until the next court date. While my sister was in jail, I stayed in touch with my niece's father so that I could know how my niece was doing. My sister asked me to send her screenshots of the conversation, hoping to use them as some sort of proof to get custody again, but I refuse. Since then, we no longer talk like we used to. She keeps me out of the loop and barely engages, and I'm sure it's because she's angry with me for drawing these boundaries, refusing to give her bail money, and believing that she needed to sit in jail and learn her lesson. The thing is, I'm now planning my wedding. At one time, I wanted my sister to be my maid of honor, but now I don't think she would even show up to the wedding. She's that unreliable. If I don't ask her to be my maid of honor or even a bridesmaid, I fear our relationship will be irreparable, and I'll lose my sister completely. But I don't think she could possibly be my maid of honor because there would be a lot of work and planning involved, and she wouldn't be able to make it a priority given how chaotic her life is. Do I ask her to be a bridesmaid and just prepare to be disappointed? Do I only give her an invite or should I leave her out of the wedding entirely? Signed, Upgrade My Sis to a Maid or Upbriad Her for This Charade.
[00:32:37] Jordan Harbinger: Oh man, this is a really sad story. Ugh, I'm sorry that your sister is so chaotic. This is a very challenging sibling to have to put it lightly.
[00:32:47] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:32:48] Jordan Harbinger: Gabe, somehow it's extra sad that they were always close and even closer after their mom died, but then the sister went off the deep end and now they're somewhat estranged.
[00:32:57] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah, for sure. Although, given that her sister has this super long history of bad choices when she says we were always close, I have a feeling what she might also be saying is I've always felt responsible for her.
[00:33:08] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, totally. I can hear that in the letter, her taking her in, fixing her life, fixing her broken windshield.
[00:33:15] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah. Which by the way, what a metaphor, right?
[00:33:17] Jordan Harbinger: Tell me about it. Straight out of an after-school special, "I'm literally going to help you see things clearly and drive straight." You can't make this stuff up. It's really spoonfed to us here. Plus helping take care of her two kids on top of her own career, and now worrying so much about her feelings about the wedding. It's just quite a commitment.
[00:33:37] Gabriel Mizrahi: Well, it's a very common template with the siblings of addicts, right? You want to help them, you want to save them, and you don't want to provoke them because that can be really scary and really unpleasant.
[00:33:47] Jordan Harbinger: Exactly. But we have to recognize your sister is an objectively problematic person. She's in crisis. She's making her problems your problems. And whatever reasons she has for being this way, the reality is your sister is an addict and you can never have a healthy, fair, well-functioning relationship with somebody who is in the grip of an addiction. You just can't. So you have a few options regarding the wedding, and you'll have to decide which one feels right for you.
[00:34:19] Option one is you ask her to be your maid of honor, but you make it very clear how much work it's going to be and what you'll need. You might want to even list all the things she'd need to do — the plan she's going to have to organize, the events she'll have to coordinate, the speeches she's going to have to make — so that she understands just how big a responsibility this is. And then you can say, "Listen, if you say yes, I need to be a hundred percent sure you can handle everything because this is important to me. But if you don't want to sign up for all that I completely understand, I will not be hurt and we will be good. I promise." Something like that and then hopefully, she declines and you're off the hook.
[00:35:01] Option two is you don't ask her to be your maid of honor, and you diplomatically explain why. You know her life is very full. That you're not sure it's fair to drop a bunch of obligations in her lap, that you don't want to pull her into a role she can't fulfill. You could make that more about you than her if that feels easier. You know like, "I know how much work being a maid of honor is, and I'd feel guilty putting that on you when you have so much going on," something like that. And maybe that's when you say, "But hey, I'd love for you to be one of my bridesmaids." Now, if she does insist on being your maid of honor. Then, you'll have to decide if you're willing to take that risk.
[00:35:41] So my question to you is, are you willing to deal with that knowing your sister's track record? Or are you at a point where you just, you don't want to put yourself in a position to be disappointed by her yet again?
[00:35:53] Gabriel Mizrahi: Oof. Yeah, that is a hard call to make. I do not envy her, but I agree. That is the question. But honestly, my take is you're well within your rights to not ask your sister to be your maid of honor. I mean, you don't even think she's reliable enough to show up to the wedding, let alone plan a bachelorette party, and write a toast and wrangle the bridesmaids and all of the stuff you have to do to plan a wedding. So I guess my question is why would you do that to yourself if you know how she behaves?
[00:36:18] Jordan Harbinger: I agree. This is her wedding. She gets to decide who's involved and who's not, and that is totally fair.
[00:36:23] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:36:24] Jordan Harbinger: As far as inviting her to the wedding at all, if you have a strong suspicion that she'll cause a scene or she's going to compromise the wedding somehow, I think you're a hundred percent allowed to not invite. A lot of people do this with addicts, but it's very hard. You're going to have to be prepared to explain your reasons and bear her response, which I'm guessing is not going to be great. So just be ready for that.
[00:36:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: Honestly, Jordan, if this were my wedding, I'm not sure I would want my meth-addict sister who picks fights with people who smash her windshield hanging around my open bar like that just sounds like a recipe for disaster.
[00:36:56] Jordan Harbinger: It does, but you know, if she does invite her sister, she should have a conversation with her about what she expects from her. No drugs, no drinking, no scenes. Put her on notice a little bit, and that's another boundary that I feel is totally fair. Although it's kind of hard to tell an addict like, "Hey, by the way, no drugs."
[00:37:14] Gabriel Mizrahi: At the party, yeah.
[00:37:15] Jordan Harbinger: Where it's so easy, right? So do what you feel you need to do to have the day that you want to have. And remember, however, your sister responds to your decision, that ultimately says a lot about her, and that is part of drawing boundaries too, not letting her reaction infect your feelings about yourself or your wedding. I know this is easier said than done, but it is absolutely crucial and it's an ongoing process.
[00:37:41] Gabriel Mizrahi: You know, I have to say, Jordan, I am actually very proud of her for the boundaries that she has drawn. For example, when she stood up to her sister, when she asked her to send her screenshots of those text messages. That's a big deal and it was probably pretty scary to say, "Nope, not getting involved in that. I don't want to be part of this. And that's a private conversation." That sounds to me like she has done a lot of work and she is coming a long way. But if dealing with your sister continues to be a challenge, and I'm sure it will be because she's a challenging sibling, then I would really consider checking out an Al-Anon meeting.
[00:38:09] We've talked about this on the show so many times. I won't belabor the point, but Al-Anon is a support group for friends and family of addicts and it's just an incredible program and a big part of it is learning how to draw these boundaries and how to deal with the feelings that addicts kick up in you. And that's a hard thing to deal with, especially with a sibling you've felt responsible for since the time you guys were kids. So I know you have a lot going on with the wedding right now. Maybe you don't need to get involved in a whole thing right now, but once the wedding is over, I would definitely check out an Al-Anon meeting. I think you would pick up a lot there.
[00:38:41] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Big fan of Al-Anon. I agree. That could be great for her. Congrats on getting married. I hope you have an amazing day, sending you, your fiance, and your sister good thoughts.
[00:38:51] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah. And if you guys have a valet at the wedding, maybe have the attendance keep an eye out for any sketchy characters hanging around the parking area with a baseball bat, just saying.
[00:39:01] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, you don't want to have to replace that windshield again. I don't know what your deductible is, but windshields can really add up.
[00:39:07] Gabriel Mizrahi: They do. They're not cheap.
[00:39:09] Jordan Harbinger: All right. What's next?
[00:39:11] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hey, Jordan and Gabe.
[00:39:12] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:39:13] Gabriel Mizrahi: I'm 23. I've been single for several years now, and the last time I dated was back in high school. After my sister got married, our friends and family began breathing down my neck, asking me whether I have plans on dating, when I'm going to get married, and whether I want to be introduced to someone. These constant questions bring up a lot of negative feelings. I often feel like I have a void in my life that needs to be filled in order to feel actually happy. I try to bury these thoughts by working out and working hard to make myself feel like an alpha female who doesn't need a man. But in the back of my mind, these feelings still linger. Now, whenever I encounter a guy, I catch myself wondering whether he's available, whether he'd be interested in me, and if he is single, I often daydream about him asking me out. Then, I'll snap out of it and tap back into my alpha mindset again. But when a guy does approach me, I often push him away out of fear that I might be romanticizing the situation. I know some of these feelings stem from many of my past crushes who all eventually asked my sister out, which would break my heart, even the guy my sister married was my childhood crush. I'm trying to live my life as an independent person early on to avoid being disappointed and heartbroken again. Honestly, I'm fine being single, and I enjoy not worrying about someone else's feelings. I'm really content with having a stable job, semi-stable mental health, and an active and healthy body. Still, I wonder if I might actually be a hopeless romantic who's desperate for love and attention. What would you suggest I do to deal with my situation? Signed, The Defended Damsel.
[00:40:49] Jordan Harbinger: Mmm. Yeah, really interesting question. This is vulnerable stuff you're sharing, and I appreciate how open you are being about all of this.
[00:40:58] So first of all, it does sound to me like this hyper-independent life you're building, this alpha mindset as you put it, is partly a response to being disappointed and heartbroken, and it's very understandable. It's actually a very interesting response because in a way it's quite adaptive. I mean, you could be responding to all this by, I don't know, drinking, doing a little bit of drugs, slipping into depression, or going the other way and throwing yourself at tons of random dudes to get validation but you're not doing that. You're working on yourself. You're channeling these difficult feelings into your career, into your health, into being self-sufficient. And there's an aspect of that, that is great. Even if your love life were going great, I would still say that it's smart that you're building a life and an identity of your own, and you're not just exclusively looking for yourself in a partner, but at the same time, there's clearly a layer to this alpha mindset that is a protective shield.
[00:41:57] You're struggling to connect with guys and you're retreating into this part of your life that you can control. And I wonder if working really hard and exercising a ton, if that sort of insulates you from some of these difficult feelings or gives you a way to cope with them or gain control over them. And by the way, I would keep an eye on the exercise thing specifically, because sometimes that can become — well, I don't want to pathologize it without all the information, but it can become a little disordered.
[00:42:26] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:42:26] Jordan Harbinger: It's part of a mechanism of control. But anyway, this whole response makes sense. It's probably comforting when you get rejected or when you reject someone else to say, "Eh, whatever. I don't need a man. I can just build my career. I can work on my body. I don't have to rely on anyone else," because having to rely on someone else in order to be happy, it sounds like that feels pretty fraught.
[00:42:49] So I would take some time to explore what this so-called alpha mindset of yours is really doing for you. How it might be protective as well as productive and how working so hard to be independent might be serving you really well on one level, but maybe isolating you and holding you back on another.
[00:43:08] Gabriel Mizrahi: That is a really nice way to put it, Jordan. I think she already knows that that's the case because as she put it, these feelings still linger.
[00:43:15] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:43:16] Gabriel Mizrahi: Even though she's trying so hard to protect herself. But because romance has been so fraught for her in the past, it sounds like she's bearing this very healthy and wonderful impulse to partner with somebody beneath this like armor of self-sufficiency.
[00:43:30] Jordan Harbinger: Right. It sounds like her sister has played a role in that too. Gabe, I'm an only child, so I really don't have firsthand experience with this, but we got to talk about that.
[00:43:38] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah. I don't quite know what to make of that. It does sound like she has maybe been living in her sister's shadow a little bit for much of her life. I mean, I'm sure they get along great and her sister's probably a nice person, but I wonder if there's maybe just like a little, a hint of competition between them that has led to some of these complicated feelings about love and dating.
[00:43:56] Jordan Harbinger: This is a self-fulfilling prophecy in my opinion. So you're in control and you got the alpha mindset and you want to reject guys and you want to focus on this other thing, but actually you don't really want to do that. You really kind of want somebody to push through that veneer and see the real you so that you can be vulnerable. But then," oh God, I don't want to open up and be vulnerable." Your defenses go up and guys might be like, "Dang, that girl at the gym is really cute. I'm going to go talk to her." And you're like, "Whatever. I'm working out." And then you're like, "But try harder." And the guy's like, "Well, I guess she's busy and I don't want to be that guy who bothers her." Your shield goes up.
[00:44:27] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:44:28] Jordan Harbinger: It creates the issue that causes you to put the shield up in the first place, which is you don't want to be rejected, so you end up rejecting people or being unapproachable. The more guys try, the more that shield goes. Therefore, the more this happens. Does that make sense, Gabe?
[00:44:42] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right. It does. And I wonder if that self-fulfilling prophecy applies to her sister as well. If she has this idea in her head—
[00:44:47] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:44:47] Gabriel Mizrahi: —that men only like my sister, or they only like other people, they don't like me, and then she responds in the way that you're describing where she withdraws and she protects, then that also becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
[00:44:57] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:44:57] Gabriel Mizrahi: You can sort of see that dynamic playing out in all these different areas of her life. But it is very interesting in the context of the sister specifically, because that sounds like a very. Influential model for like what men like and also how she feels about herself.
[00:45:12] But Jordan, we also have to point out that she seems to be valuing her attractiveness and her desirability in a very narrow way. She's discounting a lot of the things that make her so interesting, so valuable as a human being, right? She's driven, she's focused, she's hard working. That really matters too.
[00:45:30] Jordan Harbinger: Agree. Drive and focus are hot too. It's not just looks. Don't forget that looks fade, but your drive and work ethic are unlikely to fade. And I think a lot of men recognize that. And also, what's the cliche? Beauties in the eye of the beholder. So, maybe some guys are like, "Oh, your sister has such great skin," and it is like, I don't know, nice figure or whatever. You know, a lot of guys are going to go, "I don't really like that. I like the more athletic build that you've got," or who knows? But you're not even giving these guys a chance, so you don't know either.
[00:46:02] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah. We also don't even know what the woman writing in looks like.
[00:46:04] Jordan Harbinger: No.
[00:46:05] Gabriel Mizrahi: But the irony is that it almost sounds like it doesn't matter what she looks like.
[00:46:08] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:46:08] Gabriel Mizrahi: Because even if she looked great or she looked like her sister or whatever it is, she would still have these self-concepts that are holding her back. So I would do two things. First, I would start talking about all of this a lot more with the people you trust, friends, maybe family, if there's some safe people to talk to, and ideally a therapist. Your conflicts around love, they are something so many people experience. In fact, I would say that everybody does experience this to some extent actually. And I think it would be really helpful for you to talk this out more.
[00:46:40] And the thing I would really dig into is the feelings that these interactions with guys are bringing up. The vulnerability piece, especially, you know, the vulnerability of indicating interest in somebody or just in wanting them to approach you and like you back, that's very exposing. And then there's this fear that the people you meet might not feel the same way, or that you might feel disappointed or heartbroken again. That's also very meaningful.
[00:47:04] And also, Jordan, I think there's some shame in, which is the shame of struggling in this department of not always knowing how to relate to guys she likes, or even how to recover from disappointment when it does pop up.
[00:47:17] Jordan Harbinger: I think you nailed it, Gabe. This whole alpha thing is largely designed to protect against those feelings.
[00:47:23] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right.
[00:47:23] Jordan Harbinger: Especially the shame, that's often the hardest emotion to come to terms with. And if I can put on my old dating coach hat here for a second—
[00:47:31] Gabriel Mizrahi: Please.
[00:47:31] Jordan Harbinger: —which is it's a little dusty and it's been in the corner for a while. The other thing I would do, Is experiment with different ways of interacting with guys and see what happens. So for example, the next time you find yourself wondering if a guy is single or daydreaming about him asking you out, notice your response. Maybe your heart starts beating faster. Maybe you feel a little exposed, a little raw, maybe even a little silly, all of which is normal. This is literally what being a human being is all about. And then, I would hang in that feeling for a few moments, rather than shutting it down and fleeing the situation.
[00:48:07] Strike up a conversation or keep the conversation going. Notice that impulse to push the other person away. Just acknowledge it and keep talking. If you're afraid you're romanticizing the situation, just keep going and find out if the guy is actually interested in you, and then you'll have your answer. And after one of these conversations, if you're having thoughts like, "Oh, I shouldn't have said anything. I'm an idiot. I should just go home and do a 90-minute boot camp class and crush an email and focus on me." Notice that too. That's the protective thing that we talked about earlier. It's coming back in to put some distance between you and these feelings.
[00:48:43] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:48:43] Jordan Harbinger: And if you're a little clumsy at this, if you say the wrong thing sometimes if you bail on a conversation after a couple of minutes because of nerves or whatever, it's okay. You're learning. Your goal isn't to find a husband tomorrow, even might feel like you're being pressured to. Your goal is to learn to tolerate these feelings and keep engaging with life. As long as you're doing that, you'll be making progress.
[00:49:08] Honestly, Gabe, I can really relate to this woman because I was like this too when I was younger. A little daunted/a lot daunted by new people, hyper-focused on work, a little self-protective when things didn't go my way and I spent a lot of time being like, "I'm not going out tonight. It's not because I don't want to deal with the social part, it's because I have exams and should check, watch in three months. You can, you can never be, I definitely should be in the library at 9:00 p.m. And you know what? Maybe I'll just go back to my dorm room and be completely alone and look out the window at people who are having fun." That's not going to be super freaking depressing.
[00:49:43] Gabriel Mizrahi: I relate to her too, and I still deal with some of the stuff she's talking about. Romance is hard for everybody, men, women, at all stages. It's just, it's incredibly vulnerable to want to find love, to tolerate other people's feelings, all of it.
[00:49:59] Also, I didn't think we'd spend so much time talking about this letter, but it's just so interesting. I just want to call out. I think there's a cultural element here that we have to acknowledge. Your family is putting pressure on you to settle down at a very early age. You're 23 years old. It's possible that they don't value your hard work and your independence as much as you do. And part of your journey here is figuring out what matters to you and maybe how to keep those voices out of your head when they're not always helpful.
[00:50:26] Jordan Harbinger: Agreed, Gabe. Such an important point. Just one more reason that therapy would be so great for her right now. For her to figure out what her values are and how to balance her family's influence with what she wants her life to be about.
[00:50:39] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:50:39] Jordan Harbinger: So good luck. I know you can do this. Go hit on some strangers this weekend, maybe drop the hanky, bust out the old bend and snap. And for the love of God, let them hit on. It might be hard to get out of your own way sometimes, but let's at least try to get out of theirs.
[00:50:55] Hope you all enjoyed that. I want to thank everybody who wrote in this week and everyone who listened. Thank you so much. Go back and check out Matthew Campbell and Ryan Holiday if you haven't yet.
[00:51:04] Another quick reminder to check out our Six-Minute Networking course. The course is free over on the Thinkific platform at jordanharbinger.com/course. I'm teaching you how to dig the well before you get thirsty and build relationships before you need them. Just like the person up in question two, who did this right and completely knocked it out of the park. Once you need relationships, you're probably too late to make them. The drills take just a few minutes a day. It's the type of habit you really ignore at your own peril. I wish I knew this stuff 20 years ago. jordanharbinger.com/course.
[00:51:35] Show notes at jordanharbinger.com, transcripts in the show notes. Advertisers, deals, and discount codes, all at jordanharbinger.com/deals. Please consider supporting those who make the show possible. I'm at @JordanHarbinger on both Twitter and Instagram, or connect with me right there on LinkedIn. You can find Gabe on Twitter at @GabeMizrahi or on Instagram at @GabrielMizrahi.
[00:51:57] This show is created in association with PodcastOne. My team is Jen Harbinger, Jase Sanderson, Robert Fogarty, Ian Baird, Millie Ocampo, Josh Ballard, and of course, Gabriel Mizrahi. Our advice and opinions are our own, and I'm a lawyer, but I'm not your lawyer, so do your own research before implementing anything you hear on the show. Ditto Alisa Cohn. Remember, we rise by lifting others. Share the show with those you love. And if you found this episode useful, please share it with somebody else who can use the advice we gave here today. In the meantime, do your best to apply what you hear on the show, so you can live what you listen, and we'll see you next time.
[00:52:31] You're about to hear a preview of The Jordan Harbinger Show with a Ukrainian journalist and civilian turned military defense fighter.
[00:52:37] Yuriy Matsarsky: When the war started, it was five o'clock in the morning. I was woke up by rockets, which were intercepted by Ukrainian anti-missile system, right under the roof over house I lived. When I finished my job and I went home when I was underground, even in Subway, even in train, you can listen, you can hear the bombs, and even rockets, which has fallen on your city. For only two weeks, Russian destroyed more houses inside Kharkiv when Nazis destroyed Europe with whole Second World War.
[00:53:11] You can see with tanks and bombs from planes were targeting the buildings, the flats, the houses, not the military facilities. They're targeting, first of all the civilians. That's why I said much worse, even when ISIS. It's just such brutality, unimaginable brutality.
[00:53:29] So I decided that I must join the army. I took my journalist helmet with huge white letters press on it, and I took my daughter's black marker and I painted all these white letters with black into a war helmet. I'm reinventing myself from a journalist to a soldier.
[00:53:50] You know, we have a lot of trenches all around Kyiv. We have a lot of trenches inside Kyiv. So we are ready for a trench war, but almost every house, almost every flat in Kyiv, in some kind of little fortress, because almost all the people, which is still in Kyiv, were army in some way or another. So if Russia will come, we have gunfire from every second window. People prepare Molotov cocktails, millions of bottles of Molotov cocktails in Ukraine ready to be used on Russian tanks and Russian troops. So we are preparing for a battle in trenches. We are preparing for a protecting Kyiv and not letting these bastards to get into our capital, but we are also preparing for a guerrilla war inside our cities even inside Kyiv.
[00:54:42] Putin and people all around him, they don't want us to exist. We will win or we will die. It's out of the question.
[00:54:52] Jordan Harbinger: To hear what it's like on the ground for Ukrainian defenders, check out episode 638 of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
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