Episode 22: Smash the Patriarchy, Re-envison your Relationship: A Conversation with Terry Real

If someone told you that authentic relationships can cure just about everything, would you believe him? Listen to nationally recognized family therapist, author, and teacher Terry Real talk about “how to live a relational life” and there’s a great chance you’ll be on board with that idea.

If relationships are so fundamental to who we are, why are so many couples in trouble these days? Marriage wasn’t built for long walks on the beach and sex into your 70s. Marriage was built for companion and stability. So often, the reality doesn’t meet expectations.

Terry defines a “new intimacy” and tells us how this is synonymous with freeing men and women from the bonds and expectations of patriarchy. He invites us to think about relationships “ecologically” and understand how to act out of “enlightened self-interest” because we’re all so connected.

Therapeutic neutrality is a myth, says Terry and he believes you can’t teach people to be relational unless you’re relational with them. He teaches therapists to judiciously self-disclose and loves hearing his own clients say “I trusted you because I knew you’d been through it.”

All of this relational work has a spiritual component. Terry describes the movement from “first consciousness” and the knee-jerk, conditioned emotional reactions into the cultivation of “second consciousness,” which is marked by thoughtful, freedom-based responses. He helps people move from being “adaptive children” to becoming functional adults.

Other important topics covered in this conversation include the importance of:

  • taking the right kind of timeout (link below)

  • breaking free from ancestral pathologies

  • understanding that technology can play in making us tune into ourselves and others

  • the 3 key phases of healing a relationship: loving confrontation, trauma and family of origin work, and skill building

  • Your feelings haven't left you, you've left them (we talk about tracking your feelings)


We close with a discussion of the “rules” of marriage. Ultimately, it’s about following some universal laws of relationships and moving into freedom, choice, and perspective. The new rules that Terry puts forth are about liberation while staying within bounds of a union. He believes that even deeper than personal empowerment is what he calls relational empowerment.


For more on Terry’s trainings and books, visit https://www.terryreal.com/

Get his 10 Commandments of Time Outs: http://www.terryreal.com/10-commandments-of-time-outs/

See the full text of the DH Lawrence poem, “The Healing” that Terry recites: http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/575443-i-am-not-a-mechanism-an-assembly-of-various-sections



We’re so excited to highlight MetaFi in this week’s conversation with Terry Real. MetaFi is a self-awareness app created by therapists that is available FREE on Android and iOS. It is designed to support mindfulness, emotional intelligence, and body awareness. When you tune in and use MetaFi as a tool, you can re-establish and strengthen the emotional connection between your mind and body. MetaFi helps you increase awareness of how you show up from moment to moment so you can improve your relationships, productivity, creativity, emotional intelligence, and thinking.

Get started today with your free download: https://www.metafi.me/#meet-metafi


And please note that registration is open for the Practice of Being Seen Retreat for Therapist-Healers. Coming up August 13 - 16, 2017: (Re)Vision: Explore Your Stories, Shape Your Future at the Menla Mountain Retreat in New York’s gorgeous Catskill Mountains.