Silent Darkness: With Dr. Phil

On a Collision Course with Disaster

Liz still feels guilty for saying yes to George's marriage proposal. "When you said yes, that's like inviting him into your prison," Dr. Phil observes. "Are you aware that she's felt that way, George?"

 

"Yes," George says.

"How do you feel?"

"You know what I thought? I thought I'm going to come in here, I'm going to save the day, this is going to be normal, and I'm going to be the big hero, everybody's going to love George, Liz is going to love me, and I will have gotten what I needed," he says.

"If you knew then what you know now, are you saying you would've made a different decision?" Dr. Phil asks George.

Though he clearly loves his wife, George says frankly, "I have times when I feel like I wish I had never met them."

[AD]"Well, I understand what you're saying though. You're saying, ‘To be honest, part of me wishes that I hadn't fallen in love with her again, that I hadn't met these children and fallen in love,' but once you have, you have, right?" Dr. Phil asks.

"Yes, sir. It's a Catch-22," George says.

Dr. Phil asks Liz, "Do you accept that he could leave if he wanted to leave?"

"Yes, knowing that he may go and most likely will go, I'd rather he go now," Liz says.

Liz says she knows that George loves her and her four children. Still, Liz can't help but feel guilty. "I didn't remember what life was like before the triplets when we met, and it's just that he tells me all the things he could be doing, all the dreams he had, and all the things he wants to do, and how he can't do them because of the kids," she says.

George admits he gets frustrated. "I feel like I spend all day trying to do something that makes her life easier, and yet because we're married and these things are just going to happen in any marriage, she gets mad at me,
and then I get self-righteous, and I'm like, ‘You know what? You don't get to talk to me that way. Do you know what I've done all day today? You have no idea what I've had to go through.'"

"And that drives me crazy, that he says I have no idea, when I've been doing it much longer than him," Liz adds.

Dr. Phil goes over what George has said to Liz during his frustrating moments, such as, "Marrying you was my 9/11," and "You're the laziest person I've ever met."

 

[AD]"You don't really think she's the laziest person?" he asks George.

"Absolutely not," George says.

Dr. Phil says they're on a collision course with disaster in their relationship. "And the greatest gift you can give those children is to take care of the relationship between their mother and father." He tells George, "You said, ‘It's so frustrating. I go through all of this, and they don't even know I'm there.' That is so, so wrong. They do know if y'all are getting along or not. You pick them up, they feel the tension in your body. There's so much more they know than maybe is apparent."

Liz's relationship with her mother-in-law, D'anna, is strained as well. "When I married George, I felt like the other woman. I didn't expect to be the odd person out," Liz says.

"My relationship with my son, George, is like peanut butter and jelly: close," D'anna says.

"I've been doing this for seven years, you know, and sometimes she'll do something that causes me more work," Liz says.

Dr. Phil turns to D'anna in the audience. "You get the fact that because they live with the aftermath of anyone who comes in to help, that it's got to follow their decisions whether you like them or whether you don't, right?"

"Right," she says.

Dr. Phil turns back to George and Liz. "Sometimes I talk about what I call non-directional frustration. And you see it with couples who, you k
now, they'll be married, and they're having financial problems, and they don't work the problem. What they do is they vent toward each other. They get frustrated. Times are hard, so they take it out on one another. When really, there's not a relational problem, it's just that there's this outside force and you don't know what to do with it, and so you turn on each other. And you guys are doing that some, aren't you?"

"Yes," they both say.

 

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"And it's good that you recognize that," Dr. Phil says. "What you need to do now is eliminate that." He tells Liz, "This is an issue with you. I'm just going to give you my opinion. Do you want my opinion?"



"Do I have a choice?" she asks, laughing.

George laughs and says, "Welcome to my world, Dr. Phil."

"OK, let's hear what you've got," Liz says.

 
"I think you are amazingly guilt-ridden," Dr. Phil says. "I think you feel guilty for pulling him into this. I think you feel guilty as, like, why God would do this, and as a result, I think your self-worth is so diminished, when everybody in this audience right now and 10 million people in America watching this show right now are humbled in your presence. And I think all of that manifests as constant fear."

[AD]Liz nods and says, "It's just, like, when it's your kids, it doesn't matter how you feel. You love them more than you hurt, you know? So, I think anybody would do the same thing if they were your babies."

Dr. Phil tells George, "Everything I just said to her, in many respects, is true of you as well, except I think you add to that some real self-loathing from time to time, because I think you had this idea that you were going to ride in on your white horse, you were going to fix this situation, you were going to make this situation a whole lot better."

Dr. Phil assures George that his decision to join Liz's family was for the right reasons. "There's no telling where this situation would be if you and your strong spirit, your mind, everything about you hadn't shown up in this situation. Has it been perfect? No. You come away from that feeling really bad and ashamed for even thinking some of the things you've thought, but the net result of all of that is absolutely amazing strength and contribution to this whole thing. And you've got to give
yourself credit because I can tell you, there aren't a lot of guys who would step up and sign up and then do what you're doing with the spirit you're doing it. My dad used to say, ‘You need to spend five percent of your time deciding whether the deal you have is good or bad, and 95 percent of the time deciding what you're going to do about it.' And one of the things that has gotten pushed off your ‘What are you going to do about it?' list is taking care of your marriage."  

 

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