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STARTING OVER HOUSE: Lyanla makes me mad!
January 10, 2006
10:42 am
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zinnia
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I like to watch the "Starting Over House" on CBS at 9 every morning.

That's the "reality show" where some women spend time as housemates and work on their life issues with two therapists.

A new person just entered the house to start her time there, and one of the threapists, Lyanla, upset me so much during the first meeting with her that I had to get up and turn on my computer a little early today.

Does anyone else watch this show? Can we talk about it here?

I didn't put this in the "Lib Brew" threads because that program puts me through so many emotions. Am I the only one here who gets a kind of vicarious therapy from it?

January 10, 2006
2:03 pm
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jewel2
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sorry zinnia never seen it - sounds fascinating though!

January 10, 2006
2:42 pm
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Marlex
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Hi Zinnia,

I have watched it a few times and I kind of liked it..but then it gets too intense and dramatic for me...and my life is already intense and dramatic so I stopped watching it. But its a good show if my life was going ok..I need to work on myself first.

January 10, 2006
4:08 pm
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zinnia
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I live alone. So much of the "drama" that is in the show reflects past issues in my family that I think I get some good out of watching it. I can have little "aha" moments, *lol*

What therapist Lyanla did that upset me was to invite the new arrival, a woman named Lisa, to "tell her story" but then several times Lyanla inserted her own comments in a way that would have caused me to stop talking completely, if I were Lisa.

I thought it was unprofessional of her to do that, but then this is a tv show and we actually do not see a great deal of what goes on, so I have to take what I see with agrain or two of salt.

Lisa seemed nervous and eager-to-please and the comments did not seem to throw her off. She just accepted them and incorporated them into her story.

I have been watching this show for a few weeks, and this is the first "new arrival" I see, so it will be interesting to see how she progresses.

January 11, 2006
9:42 am
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zinnia, hello,

I don't know the program either, but it draws me in that the therapist's manipulation and "suggestions" were so aggravating to you. Were your family situations resolved, or unresolveable, or did you just put some distance between you and them?

You struck a chord in me.

I am probzbly alot older than most posters here. This strikes me as what I (AND all my siblings) did -- that is, just LEAVE an unresolveable situation.....our mother died, we were all away at college or moving on anyway, our father was fairly uncommunicative, and the rest of the extended family was unappealing.

There was alot of that "well-meaning" manipulative advice around. I myself was extremely happy to be away and free to think my own thoughts and make my own decisions.

I wonder if that is typical of youth or if my own situation was worse than the norm, or if I was so "sensitive" I couldn't handle being "advised".

Thanks for making me notice this (my first reaction was oh yuk now someone is talking about TV programs??). It makes me realize I need to question my reactions to programs. Why do both my H and I dislike reality TV so much?

January 11, 2006
5:43 pm
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zinnia
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Brynnie,
I really don't know ages here. I am 30+20 and holding *lol*.

I have been watching Lyanla today, and I am doing what my therapist taught me years ago about people who trigger: distance from them and watch as if it is a play, and try to identify each thing that is a trigger and where the root of the trigger is.

In this case, it is definitely in one of my sisters. She used to decide that she knew what was going on in my head and what I "needed" and if she saw any kind of problem, she would pounce with a very punitive "you made this happen" kind of attitude. She always knew more than anyone about their own thoughts.

Some of it was due to the fact that we are simply such different personalities that she could never enjoy the same things I do, and she could not accept that as "normal". She coudl not figure me out and she hates not knowing something.

Some of it was due to the fact that she used to read a lot of those books that say we all create our own reality. She would be screaming at me whenever she saw me in any kind of weak position, and I had to protect myself and my daughter from her when I left my husband.

She had also been in one of those religions that teach that you can just "decide" a problem will go away, and you are terrible if it doesn't happen.

So when I was trying to talk with my parents about what to do about a difficult divorce and being penniless, she would find out from my mother what was going on and then run over to my house to scream at me while I was trying to survive.

She was not the "NPD" narcissist, though. She was hooked up very close with my other sister. The two of them "Irish Twins" (less than a year apart) and they grew up as a kind of two-headed Jekell & Hyde. My other sister manipulated her a lot.

I never hated the first sister, because she would blow in like a storm and I just had to protect myself from her obvious mental illness. The other one, the "rational" one, she is truly evil. She planned and calculated how to profit from abuse and from siccing others on her victims. Those two may as well have been conjoined twins.

Here I am over fifty and still scared of them!

January 11, 2006
5:57 pm
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zinnia
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"...I am doing what my therapist taught me years ago about people who trigger: distance from them and watch as if it is a play, and try to identify each thing that is a trigger and where the root of the trigger is... "

The way I learned to do this:

Kind of freeze-frame the moment of feeling upset. Let the image of what is upsetting linger and let another image float up. The float-up will often be the face of the original triggering person, and something about why the new trigger reminded me of the original trauma will also be clear:
similar words? similar body language? etc.

Having done this, it becomes easier to accept the new person on her own terms as a non-threatening individual.

January 11, 2006
6:01 pm
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I'm with you kind of! I think she crosses the line and is unnecessarily harsh at times. She might need some empathy skills. The other adviser is nice.

So you're saying she interrupted the new girl? I need to improve my communication skills too, I frequently interrupt. I need to listen more closely and carefully.

January 11, 2006
6:03 pm
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addicts wife
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Iyanla is a tad abraisive ot me at times, but she is trying to make a point and bring things to peoples attention that they have been doing subconscously, and or already know but never heard it out loud.
The "lifecoaches" as theyre called have some odd tactics, but in the past, the graduates have gotten al ot out of the whole process.((IMHO))
I had thought of caling or writing to the show to go there once or twice myself, but chose to just find ways local and waaay off hollywood cameras.
J makes fun of me for watching especially when one of the people starting over is doing an activity and their blubering, becasue he thinks it's sillybut then again, even in his jest, which I can laugh at too, I think if her really did some of those exercises long ago, I may not have needed to search out this site etc.
Ahemmm. I do like the show, but dont really watch it everyday or anything. There was a season where there was a mother daughter on and I really liked the work they did on themselves, adn the Woman who had cancer& big family issues adn took "the longest" to graduate was really endearing to me.
J really cant stand Iyanla, but he only seems ot walk in when theres someting weird going on so its all out of context by the time he walks in.

January 11, 2006
11:33 pm
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zinnia
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Yes addictswife, I can see that this is probably not a "guy" kind of show.

Wouldn't it be interesting to see a "Starting Over" house for guys?

scarey thought, *lol*....

The problem may be that Lyanla plays to the camera. That is good for the show, and it may not even be conscious on her part, but the fact is, "quiet listening" like the other "life coach" does, just doesn't make compelling footage.

That may be a fatal flaw in the whole process.

I have thought of applying to go on that program, but the part that stops me completely is the involvement of other people. On the one hand, I would love to see certain of my relatives forced to watch how they communicate with me, but on the other, there are those whose privacy would be invaded "by default".

So then on second thought, a special program with Jerry Springer and Dr. Phil might be where my family belongs.

I would love that! *lol*

Oooooohhhhhh.... did I mention I have a very sarcastic sense of humor sometimes? *s*

January 12, 2006
8:31 am
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addicts wife
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LOL... I have joked before that some fokls I know can EASILY be mistaken for Springer guests. it is sooo bad, but sadly, all too true.
I know Iyanla has written a couple books, but never researched her too much, as to her approach. i know she is not afraid to say things as she sees them, or say how shes thinking, which I can respect, becasue coddling and being too sympathetic can come acriss as babying, and as fake to me, and others I am sure, but her tone can be easily misinterpreted for me some times, so ihave to remind myself that I should listen to the messege, not the tone sometimes.
Some folks really have no idea how they sound, even when their messege is quite sincere and helpful.
((Learned that a lot form the mom inlaw... she can say some really bizzare /odd things, but mean well, and I have to remind myself that she is lacking in social skills and means well ))I have conflict wiht myself on this topic, because i on one hand realize A lot of things are up to me how to react, but then when some folks are just rude, uncouth, or "whatever" i can't make excuses for them either and just shrug it off. so I guess the key is communicating, and expressing to the person how I interpret things they have said, to address things that rubbed me the worng way.

OH!! and btw!! I sooo cannot imagine a housefull of guys going here! but they did have a stint with couples, and it was very interesting, kinda like a retreat/couples therapy thingy.. I was tempted to call and apply!! not that i wouldve been accompanied, J doesnt like when our friends know "our personal business" and keps stuff to himself, and between us, when I need to vent, share, and express stuff. balancingthat can be tricky!!LOL

January 13, 2006
3:34 pm
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zinnia
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They have a guy in there right now, TJ's husband.

He is there for a visit, and he gets into some of the exercises.

Another new member of the house is "Kim". She did an exercise in releasing anger today that I found very difficult to watch.

This show is making me understand how much professinal abuse I suffered about 15 years ago. Several times now I saw the life-coaches using acting-out exercises to help the women, and they were exactly like the acting-out exercises I have experienced in therapy. But the therapy group I was using was manipulating people into expressing emotions that they then characterized as "proof" the clients were sick.

Several times watching S-O House I wanted to shout "It's a trick! Don't do it!" *lol* but then the follow-up was not at all what had been my experience.

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