DR. TONI GALARDI
MASTERING CHANGE…ITALIAN STYLE

Ask the LifeQuake Doctor

October 2011

Dear Readers:

As we enter the season of change when things in nature reach their fruition and then begin to deteriorate, so are the cycles of life. The wise person notices when aspects of their life are no longer vital and begins to plan for the next chapter. Unfortunately, most of us are so busy living life from our routines that we don’t take the time to notice that a new blueprint is emerging for our lives. Currently, the world is in great evolutionary transition, this emerging new reality is appearing as a state of chaos.

In January, I am beginning a new teleclass series to prepare us for entering 2012 with greater resilience and centeredness along with an opportunity to design a life that fulfills your greatest potential self even if it currently feels a bit chaotic. I hope you will join me on this exciting adventure.

Dear Dr. Toni:

I am a psychotherapist so have never written to an advice columnist before. I have been involved with a wealthy man for the past six months. My career is in transition. I am hoping to become a professional speaker to augment my income. My boyfriend has been paying for my marketing efforts and medical bills.

Recently, he told me that he didn’t think we were a long term fit because I am not masterful at being a domestic engineer, something he says he wants in a wife and I don’t share his passion for hard rock and roll and water skiing. The confusion for me is that we have this amazing intimate relationship sexually, spiritually, and psychologically and it has gotten even better in the last month. He said he is not interested in anyone else and doesn’t want to end our relationship but just doesn’t want to get my hopes up that we will get married. I do want to get married. I am in my 50’s as is he, so there is no urgency to find someone to father my children as I do not have children.

Should I continue the relationship?

Dazed and Confused in Chicago

Dear Reader:

Most shrinks would advise you to get out. I see this a little differently. My question to you is, what are your relationship needs at this time?  Can you stay in the present and really enjoy this relationship as a love affair or will you find yourself getting angry because he doesn’t see you as wife material?

If he wasn’t wealthy and you knew this was not long term, would you continue? What are you learning in the relationship that has nothing to do with what he provides for you financially? You say you want to get married? Why? And what will you learn from being with this man that will support you in evolving into the woman you want to be who is ready for marriage?

Most of my responses to you are questions rather than answers, as you can see. Given that you are a psychotherapist, I sense you are better served by this line of inquiry than direct advice.

Good luck and have fun!

Dear Dr. Toni

I am a trans-gender man who has been in a long – term relationship with a woman. She and I were lovers when I was still a woman. Recently, I have noticed that I am more interested in women who are either heterosexual or just very feminine lesbians. There is a woman at my work who has expressed an interest in me. She knows I am a trans-gender man.

I love my wife and don’t want to divorce her but this desire for other women has been growing for the past year. What should I do? Should I tell her or just play it out once and see if my attraction has any substance? I love your column and would be most appreciative if you respond to questions like this.

John A.

Dear John:

I admire your courage in reaching out and in following your heart on changing genders. Like all couples, when you are in a long – term relationship, a point comes where boredom sets in and the desire for someone different than the spouse we have often manifests. The question I have is, have you openly talked about these feelings with your wife? Talk about it in terms that do not indicate you are going to act on them but want to explore what the attraction is. Would it matter if your wife dressed in more feminine clothing or sexy lingerie?  Is there anything in your sex life that you would like changed or expanded?

I would urge you not to do what has been historically true with heterosexual men and just act out of an inclination or titillation. Also, consider seeing a marriage counselor if you need a third party professional to work this through with.

All the best to you.

Dr. Toni Galardi is a licensed psychotherapist, career coach, public speaker, organizational consultant, and the author of the book, The LifeQuake Phenomenon: How to Thrive (not just survive) in Times of Personal and Global Upheaval.

To submit questions for  “Ask the LifeQuake Doctor” or if you would like to consult Dr. Galardi for SKYPE or phone coaching, she can be reached through her website at http://www.LifeQuake.net or 310-890-6832. Enrollment for her new teleclass begins Oct 5.

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