Relationship Rescue Retreat: Infidelity: Donna and Vinnie at Home

Relationship Rescue Retreat: Infidelity: Donna and Vinnie at Home
Dr. Phil continues his intense workshop with six couples on the verge of divorce.Donna records a video diary entry at home after the retreat:

Donna: Ever since he came back from his rendezvous, he's been treating me like I better be glad he came back. I want a divorce from him and I want to move on with my life. And I don't care if I have to live in a cardboard box. I'm fed up with it!

Vinnie attempts to record a video diary, but it turns into an argument with Donna.

Vinnie: Hi Dr. Phil, it's Vinnie, I just wanted to comment on the last dyad.
Donna: You just turned it around.
Vinnie: This was supposed to be my video diary.
Donna: Too bad.
Vinnie: And I did another video diary that Donna erased, and she just let me know, and that's really...
Donna: I'm not going to let you tell lies about me "
Vinnie: I didn't tell lies, I tell facts "
Donna: You lied about me about the restraining orders.
Vinnie: Fine, it was your opinion, now it's my opinion. I'm entitled to do that, and then you erased it or taped over it or whatever you did, I don't know "
Donna: You are such an a**hole.
Vinnie: It's just not right.
Donna: I don't give a sh**!
Dr. Phil summarizes what's been happening with Donna since she forgave Vinnie during the retreat: "There's a voice inside you that haunts you," he says, explaining that Donna thinks forgiving Vinnie is the equivalent of saying, 'You win, I lose, you got away with it.' She fears that forgiveness means she would be saying that what he did was OK.

"Right," agrees Donna.

"This is no longer about the affair. Do you understand that?" Dr. Phil asks Vinnie. "Do you realize that what you did was not OK? Not right, won't ever be. But it is what it is. You did it. I think it's no longer about the affair."

Dr. Phil brings up an agreement between Vinnie and Donna. The deal was Vinnie would not play baseball on the team and on the field where he met the other woman, and Donna would never bring the affair up again. "And how long did that last before you brought it up again?" he asks Donna.

"Probably the next day," says Donna. "But that's only part of the deal. I want to know who he had an affair with."

Dr. Phil interrupts her. "I am convinced, Donna. You're saying you are choosing not to get past this. I give up, I swear. I absolutely give up. We need to talk about getting a divorce."

Dr. Phil continues: "This isn't about the affair anymore. It has become your identity," he tells Donna. To Vinnie, "I'm not saying that you don't deserve every manner of hell for doing what you've done, but if it's a life sentence and I were you, I'd serve it somewhere else ... somewhere besides being browbeaten every single day."

Dr. Phil brings up the effect their fighting has had on their baby. "Is it not true that the baby has started waking up in the night screaming? And is it not true that the baby has started random vomiting, absent any other sort of disorder that you can identify? That's called psychogenic vomiting ... You need to shut this down and get out of it ... I'm telling you two, that you people are not right for each other if you're going to make the choices that you're making. I don't want to see this child paying for your need to feed the drama."

When Dr. Phil asks them if they're going to go home and continue their behavior, Donna responds: "No, but he didn't go through with his deal to me. He made a deal with me on this whole thing ""

Dr. Phil falls back in frustration. "Donna "!"

"So why can't he just do his deal with me like the way he promised me?"


"Because he did do a deal and it wouldn't matter!"

Dr. Phil reminds them that Donna's 13-year-old son won't live with them, and that their baby may be vomiting because of what Vinnie and Donna are doing in their home. "I intend for it to stop," he tells them. "However it has to happen. That baby doesn't have a voice and can't tell you people to shut up, so I'm telling you for the baby: Shut up! You need to just shut up! And if you're not going to forgive him, OK, I accept that. Let's move on."

Vinnie has something to say. "I've tried everything that I can to get the forgiveness. I even called the girl. [Donna] even had an hour and a half conversation with the girl on the phone, and she wanted to talk to her again and meet her, and we tried that, and apparently the cell phone number is different or is disconnected ""

"I'll bet it is," says Dr. Phil.

"I've gone to whatever lengths I can to try to appease her," says Vinnie.

Dr. Phil tells Donna that she's getting a payoff by not forgiving Vinnie. "Donna, don't you get the fact that it's a bottomless pit? You could meet her, you could move her into the house, you could follow her around, you could shave her head, it wouldn't make any difference. You don't want to give this up!" he tells her.
"I don't feel I'm getting any payoff from this," she says.

"Really?" Dr. Phil asks. "You don't think that this is a constant vigilance and test for you, where you constantly test him, push him, call him, check on him? You are addicted to this. You are getting a payoff for it."

Dr. Phil reiterates that Donna won't get past the affair, so they should get a divorce.

"Maybe that is what I have to do," says Donna.

"It's not what you have to do, but you've got to make a choice other than continuing to subject this child to this endless, endless battling between the two of you," Dr. Phil tells them.

"I'm looking for an end to it though," says Donna, who brings up the fact that Vinnie is still going to go to the baseball field where it all started.

"Do you think that if he agrees not to go there, that this is all solved?" Dr. Phil asks.

"It'll help," says Donna.
"I didn't ask you that," Dr. Phil explains. "If he doesn't go there, will you say, 'That's it, I will put this behind me'? ... Are you telling me this is over, that, 'If we do that, it's done. I'm not going to ask to talk to her, I'm not going to ask to see her. I'm not going to haunt you and wonder where you are every minute of every hour of every day ... I'm done'?"

Donna thinks about it. "All of that except one thing. I think I should know who she is, like, her face," she says.

Dr. Phil shakes his head. He decides not to say anything, and breaks for a commercial.