Here is the transcript from this week’s episode of Relationship Radio.
Kimberly Holmes 0:03
Elon Musk has been accused of having an affair. And while this has been blowing up some of the national media, we realize that maybe you have been accused of having an affair or you have been accusing someone of having an affair. So we’re going to be talking about this story. But even more importantly, we’re going to be talking about how it could apply to you and people that you know, in your life. That’s today’s topic in relationship radio. I am Kimberly Holmes, the CEO of marriage helper, joined today by Dr. Joe Beam.
Dr. Joe Beam 0:36
Hello. Interesting. I’ve never met Mr. Musk, but he is definitely an interesting character.
Yes, that is very true. And as we get started, I want to encourage all of you to follow the relationship radio podcast. And we hope that at the end of this, you love it so much that you give us a five star review. That is our goal. All right. So let’s talk about this story that has happened. Elon Musk, accused by one of his friends, one of the co founders of Google, I believe it was I believe that.
Kimberly Holmes 0:42
Yes, that is right. And it apparently happened, the Mr. Brin and his wife. Sergey.
Dr. Joe Beam 1:16
We’re not quite surely sure how to pronounce his first name. Forgive us, Mr. Brin for pronouncing your name.
Kimberly Holmes 1:13
Right. So he and his wife had divorce. They stated irreconcilable differences earlier this year, but it was around that same time or just after that Sergej accused the divorce of really being Elon fault. So here we have friends, allegedly billionaire friends, that this is the one of their relationships, when on the rocks. Apparently the other ones relationship was on the rocks when the assumed affair happened. And here it is.
Dr. Joe Beam 1:13
Okay. Which gives it an error of being plausible. Now, Mr. Musk, if you ever see this, I am not accusing you of anything. We’re just trying to explain how people think here. But because of the fact that he and his girlfriend we’re having apparently based on what the media says some difficulty at the time. And Mr. Brin, his wife, of course, having some difficulty at the time, then it becomes plausible to say, well, they were in the same place at the same time. And they were friends. And apparently, somebody thought they got too close to each other. And so that’s why it became believable to many people is believable, because the situation sounds correct. But then when you look at Mr. Musk side of it, the difficulty is this. How do you prove a negative? You see if he says no, which he did. He said, that didn’t happen. I didn’t do it. And so when you look at that, and Mr. Musk is saying I did not do that, as I just said, it’s very difficult to prove a negative because what do you offer as proof? I mean, proving a negative says, What am I getting information? Now, if he can offer proof like, well, when that happened in Miami, I was actually in Arizona. Okay, that kind of proof can help. But basically, in the situation here, it appears that it came down to do you believe the man tells the truth? Okay, if you believe that Elon Musk is a truthful man, at least, about this, if you believe he’s a truthful man, then you would say, he says it didn’t happen. I believe it didn’t happen. If you doubt his morality or his integrity, then that gives more plausibility to the accusation that it occurred, right? That’s exact same thing that happens when a husband or wife is accused of cheating by the other spouse or by some mutual friend that says this is going on. So if you can’t prove a negative, I was in Arizona, it couldn’t have happened. How do you handle this?
Kimberly Holmes 3:48
Well, and I would, I would even venture to say it’s way more grave of a situation or important of a situation if it’s your spouse accusing you of this than just national media. Now, no one wants to be accused of having an affair on national media, I’m sure. Unless they were planning this for some reason as a big public, exactly. Some publicity stunt. But then you actually have the person you’re closest to who’s doubting your trustworthiness. And that is a huge flag. It’s a huge red flag. Now, it could be a huge red flag because they’re being paranoid when they don’t have a reason to be. Or it could be a huge red flag because you have been acting suspiciously exactly not building trust.
Dr. Joe Beam 4:32
We know because we deal with a lot of marriages word up here does occur, and when it’s still secret. In other words, one who is straying so far has been able to cover it up and the spouse sees the signs. And the spouse is coming along saying this doesn’t make sense. That doesn’t sound true. And those kinds of things. We know that typically what occurs then, is that the one who is straying will do everything they can to convince their spouse, that they’re nuts. You’re crazy. You’re paranoid And therefore, people start questioning themselves do Am I just totally wrong here? So we know that can occur. On the other hand, Kimberly, we also know that a lot of accusations take place that are not accurate. That’s right. And so let’s assume that we’re dealing with that one right now that I am being accused. My wife or my friends are saying that I must be sleeping with Sally Sue whomever it might be out there. So what would you recommend that I do to somehow stop the accusations? Or should I even worry about it?
Kimberly Holmes 5:35
Well, I would say my encouragement would be because it’s your wife or close friends, making the accusation. It’s not just someone on the street who has a vendetta against you and is slandering you, then it’s important to take those to heart and evaluate your actions. What is it that I might be doing that’s leading them to believe this? Am I being inappropriate with someone having to close a relationship with someone else? Now all of that is predicated on that your heart is in a place to not just be defensive and shut it out. Right? In an ideal situation, these are the things that would happen. So maybe you, you admit to yourself, you know what, I have been getting too close to that person at work. We’ve been going on lunch dates, just the two of us, I can see why people would think there’s something happening. Therefore, I need to set some things in place in that type of relationship. Because I don’t want that to happen. That would be ideal, right?
Dr. Joe Beam 6:33
But I think the first thing you said there is very important is about who makes the accusation. If it’s just somebody out there, I mean, over the years, because of the fact that we’re so visible, we’ve had people accuse us of about everything you can imagine. And you didn’t even know who the people are. It’s like, I don’t know you. I don’t know who you are, I don’t know what you’re saying. And typically, then it’s better in my opinion, just ignore Exactly. It’s like, ignore it. Why? Because who are you? Why would anybody believe you anyway? But if it’s somebody who’s close to you, but Kimberly, doesn’t that mean, swallowing some of your pride? Because you might be saying, well, yeah, I’m having lunch with that person. But I mean, don’t you believe in my integrity? So doesn’t require some humility to say, Well, if that’s how people are interpreting it, then I need to change it, even if I feel that I’m in the right,
Kimberly Holmes 7:19
right? Well, yes. And that’s why I said it depends on the state of the person’s heart. It depends. Are they receptive to that feedback? And not just are they receptive to the feedback? Are they receptive to behavior change, because it’s what’s best for their marriage? And that’s the key you can fight all day long. It’s my right, I’m not doing anything wrong. Just deal with it. But is that building trust in your marriage to respond in that way? In fact, I would say that’s a huge trust breaking response. Exactly. Because you’re not hearing the the concerns of the person closest to you right?
Dr. Joe Beam 7:56
Now, we do know that sometimes some spouses have such anxiety about life in general, or they’ve had some terrible experiences previously, either of what happened with their mom and dad, or what happened in a previous relationship. And these people actually can become paranoid, to the point where that you by saying or doing nearly anything, can set them off? Well, we’re not talking about that right now. Because that’s a different kind of thing to handle, when your spouse is just having that kind of paranoia. Maybe we can talk about that very briefly in a minute. But right now we’re talking about if it’s not that situation, now, you might think your spouse is being paranoid, but it’s not a fact of life. For them. They’re not normally paranoid, they’re just not feeling good about this relationship, then here’s what I would recommend. Sit down with your spouse and say, look, I can see that this is really upsetting you. Let me hear all that you think and you feel. Now if you do that, you cannot be defensive. Listen, don’t say, But wait a minute, don’t do that. You just listen. And then maybe feed back the emotions you’re hearing to the other person. So So you feel that you’re like second in my life, is that what you’re saying? Rather than the most important person, whatever they’re feeling, you try to feed back to them to let them know you’re actually hearing them. And if you’re having a good rational, I’ll even use the word sane conversation with each other. That’s when you can say, okay, let’s together, figure out the kind of behaviors that I can do and not into that can help you feel secure with me. Now know, it might sound a little scary to begin with, because you’re gonna think they’re gonna lock me up in the basement and I’ll never get out again. If they offer that kind of thing, then what you say to them is, I understand that that’s how scared you are. But we both know that won’t work. That’s not rational. And so you finally negotiate it down to where you can find okay, I’m not going to have lunch with Sally Sue by myself anymore. As a matter of fact, you won’t have lunch with her at all. And then you can work out together, what feels comfortable to your spouse what feels comfortable to you. And by doing that, then you can find a behavior If you do that and agree on what that would be the things you do and don’t do, then you must live up to it to the best of your ability. And if some situation causes you to contradict that agreement, like you inadvertently wind up sitting at the next table at a restaurant in there, the other person is, tell your spouse right away. Call I’m going home, you won’t believe what happened today. I was having lunch over here at Charlie’s and, and that way by that openness, honesty and transparency, you can overcome it. Trying to convince your spouse you’re not having an affair is going to be difficult, unless it’s something like you thought that happened in Miami, but I was in Arizona. The other way to do it, then is by becoming so transparent and open, that your spouse has no reason to doubt you. Now, if you’re thinking, Well, I can just do that by myself, I don’t need to have that conversation with my spouse. If you do it just by yourself without having the conversation with the spouse, you create the possibility that your spouse thinks that you’re covering something. And so that’s why you need to have the conversation first and agree on those things, so that your spouse doesn’t see your changing behavior as being somehow not quite right. And, Kimberly, I think that that’s the way most couples can help. Do you agree or disagree? And then what if one spouse really is just paranoid?
Kimberly Holmes 11:19
Well, the thing I would add about this is, it’s I believe it’s best and healthiest that a couple agrees on these things early on in their relationship.
Dr. Joe Beam 11:30
Kimberly Holmes 11:30
You don’t wait until the suspicion comes or the trust breaks, you make the rules of how are we going to handle other or opposite sex relationships? And what and what does that look like, and then being very open with each other, if you’ve been hit on or you feel like inappropriate text may have, like a flirty text may have happened, all those kinds of things. So for example, with Rob and I, we have unfiltered access to each other’s phones, right? He can see any text conversation I’m having with anyone, or email or whatever, at any given time. And, and furthermore, if I even feel like something was said to me, or I said to someone, and I’m like, I don’t even know like, did that come across the wrong way I proactively show him, I’m like, Look, here it is, like, I want you to be in the open. But that’s how we’ve been from day one. And, and so having that kind of communication and expectations on the front end is way better than having to cut having to deal with all of it in the middle of hurt feelings as well.
Dr. Joe Beam 12:35
But sometimes you have to deal with it. And you have to end the middle of hurt. If you absolutely know very quickly about the paranoid thing you said, but my spouse was just paranoid about everything. And that case, we would recommend that that your spouse, if he or she is willing, should actually see a really good therapist or counselor, not to deal with your marriage, but to deal with their feelings of fear that I’m afraid this bad things happening. I’m afraid that bad things happening. Because those are almost always based on either something from childhood, or previously in life, to your relationship. And counselors can be really good at helping people get closure with those kinds of things. Now, going to see a marriage counselor is a different animal and not what we’d recommend in this particular situation. But you can find good therapist, if you do that. Always check them out in advance. Always make sure they’ll operate within your belief and value system. Always operate with one who believes in the sanctity of marriage, those kinds of things. But we don’t have the ability here to tell tell you what to do to help a paranoid spouse because that’s when you need somebody who is professional in that. Right. Right. So what’s your final word to Mr. Musk? I’m sure he’s watching.
Kimberly Holmes 13:46
I’m sure is.
Dr. Joe Beam 13:48
I hope he is, I really like that guy.
Kimberly Holmes 13:50
Mr. Musk, we can help you have great relationships. That’s what I would say.
Dr. Joe Beam 13:54
As matter of fact, we would love to help you have great relationships. I am actually one of your fans, Mr. Musk. And if you happen to see this or hear about this, and want some people who really deal with marriages and relationships every day, and have been doing so for decades with a tremendous degree of success. That would be us. Plus, I’d just love to meet you. I think you’re a neat guy.
Kimberly Holmes 14:17
So the takeaways from this episode are, first of all, if you feel like trust has been broken, or you’re you’re suspicious about something or maybe you’re the one being accused, especially if you’re the one being accused, then have a heart humble enough to assess your own actions and make behavior changes for the benefit of your marriage. That’s it. And if you’re too paranoid, if you’re on that other side, and you’re the spouse who thinks everything they do, could possibly be them having an affair. It’s time to get some professional help.
Dr. Joe Beam 14:48
Right. Unless, of course, they really are having an affair. Don’t let them convince you. You’re crazy if the evidence is true and real. So if you’re imagining a lot of things get help. If you’re asked to ignore a lot of things, dig deeper.
Kimberly Holmes 15:06
And that would be, you have the evidence and you’re being lied to that you’re not seeing what you have. Yeah, that makes sense. All right. Hope you enjoyed this episode. If you loved it, then please leave that five star rating. It helps us to reach more people and helps the growth of the podcast. We would also love to help you with anything that you are experiencing in your marriage at marriage helper. So you can go to marriage helper.com and find more information about our foundations course, which is a course a 10 part course where we teach you all of the foundational things that you can do to fix, save or turn around your relationship, at least in the first steps that we give you. Or we also have our three day couples turn around workshop that has over a 70% success rate. It’s saving marriages, which you can also find more about at marriagehelper.com.
Dr. Joe Beam 16:00
Thank you for having me.
Kimberly Holmes 16:01
Thank you for being on. We’ll see you all next week.