First Wives Club: Feedback Exercise

First Wives Club: Feedback Exercise


In an experiment designed to get the women to own their own emotions and to become aware of how others see them, Dr. Phil asked them to give brutally honest feedback to each other.

Pam tells Heidi, "My experience of you is that you are whiney."


Holly tells Donna, "You're pathetic. You're playing the victim."


Donna tells Pam, "I see a lot of you in me. You're not standing up for yourself."


Heidi tells Donna, "I see you as weak."


After they tell each other what they honestly think, Dr. Phil and Robin take their turns. They begin with Heidi. "My position on you is that you are extremely angry at everyone, at your situation in life," Robin tells her. "That you are on the verge of breaking down in

tears, every second of every day. You are angry that you are in this position in your life, and you blame yourself."

"You are scared, and you are absolutely checking out," says Dr. Phil.

"Pam, my position on you is you are angry at the entire world and all women one day younger than you. You are cold. You are afraid to step out and have a life. You don't believe you deserve to be happy," says Robin.

"You are cold and unfeeling, and waiting for life to be delivered," Dr. Phil tells Pam.

Robin turns to Holly. "You are not giving yourself enough credit for who you are. You are just waiting for the church to tell you that it's OK," says Robin.

Dr. Phil tells Holly, "You're self-righteous. You think you're better than these other women here, and you believe you're standing on the moral high ground."


"Donna, you are weak and whiney, and you allow everyone to tell you what to do, what to think, and when to think it," says Robin. 

"You have assumed a spineless and gutless position in life, because you think it is safe. And you fail to recognize that it's going to cost you what you have left," Dr. Phil tells Donna.

When Dr. Phil asks what they think about the feedback they've

received, Holly says, "You and Robin were pretty right on."

Pam disagrees with what she heard. "I don't like what you said and what Robin said about me being cold and unfeeling, or uncaring, because that is not the way I am," she says, defensively.

"You're not even there!" Dr. Phil tells her. "Pam's not there. You won't even give yourself the right to be there. You can't ever get where you want to go, if you don't claim your right to go there." Dr. Phil thinks all the women have taken over where their ex-husbands left off. Each day they wake up and remind themselves how worthless they are.