November 19, 2018
A cheating husband, drugs, stalkers, liars and flipping houses. This week’s caller is at a critical juncture in her life and is a little unclear on where the truth lies.
This episode is brought to you by This Is Love podcast, One Drop (www.getonedrop.com code: STORIES), Kopari (www.koparibeauty.com/BEAUTIFUL), Bombas (www.bombas.com/STORIES code: STORIES), and Ulta Beauty (www.ulta.com).
139 — Basement Infidelity
[00:01:13] CHRIS: Hello to all my cat people. It’s Beautiful Anonymous one hour, one phone call. No names, no holds barred.
[00:01:27] THEME MUSIC: I’d rather go one-on-one. I think it’ll be more fun and I’ll get to know you and you’ll get to know me.
[00:01:38] CHRIS: [music transition] Hello, everybody. It’s Chris Gethard. Welcome to another episode of Beautiful Anonymous, a show I am very lucky to do. Thanks for supporting it. Thanks for supporting me as well. I tell you, I was plugging my book for a while on the show and they told me the sales aren’t great, they’re not blowing people away. And that’s OK. But they did tell me the audiobook sounds pretty well. And I assume that’s the people who listen to this show. Thank you for that. Thanks for supporting me. Oh, also, you know, last week’s episode we had the girl who, whose house had recently burned down. First of all, Beautiful Anonymous the community. Her mom has been posting pictures of all those animals. So you’re gonna want to join to check out that episode for those sweet animal pics. Thanks to everybody who contributed to that Go Fund Me. It was heartwarming to see. I think the Beautiful Anonymous listeners kicked in a couple of thousand bucks on that. And it’s very cool. Very cool. Don’t forget, we have the Beautiful Anonymous follow-ups series, Beautiful Follow-ups on Stitcher Premium. Last week we followed up with the caller from Love Is Everywhere. One of the all time classic calls, raising a child with cancer. A very, very sad, inspiring call. Follow up is the same. We hear from the same caller about how her and her family are doing. And again, I would say maybe an even more heartbreaking yet somehow more inspiring call. And this Friday, we got a call follow up with call from Married the Day We Met. Remember that one, the opera singer who fell into that really intense love story that went dark and some bombshells in the follow up to that one. Now, this week’s call I want to just right out of the gate, say to everybody who comments about this one on the Internet. Remember, this is a human being here. And let’s not get too caught up in it because you will hear this one has some… a lot of drama and some mystery to it. It’s an intriguing story. It’s a very human story too, remember the human side and enjoy this intriguing tale of of love and drugs and dealing with the future. Enjoy it, everybody.
[00:03:40] PHONE ROBOT: Thank you for calling Beautiful Anonymous. A beeping noise will indicate when you are on the show with the host. [Beep]
[00:03:47] CHRIS: Hello?
[00:03:50] CALLER: Hello?
[00:03:51] CHRIS: Hi.
[00:03:52] CALLER: How’s it going? What’s up?
[00:03:55] CHRIS: How’s it going? It’s good. Didn’t sleep as much last night as I would have liked. But I had a big old cuppa tea this morning trying to get myself a kick so that’s how I…
[00:04:05] CALLER: Nice, yeah. I really like that you always answer honestly. It’s cool.
[00:04:10] CHRIS: Thanks, yeah. Try to do my best. Try to do my best.
[00:04:14] CALLER: Yeah. Cause I mean, I don’t know. Just people make the worst comments like “how are you doing?” And then they just immediately talk about something else. Like they just do not care. And I don’t know everybody’s so, so stuck in this, like “you have to be good” kind of mindset and it’s just really cool to hear. I don’t know. A real answer. Didn’t sleep much, having some tea.
[00:04:39] CHRIS: I do. I do my best to try to set a tone at the top of these calls for simple honesty and truth.
[00:04:47] CALLER: Yes. Cool.
[00:04:48] CHRIS: So in the spirit of that, how are you doing?
[00:04:51] CALLER: Oh, man, my life has been weird these past couple weeks for about a month, two months? Lately, my husband and I thought it would be cool to flip houses. We both work in the mortgage industry and saw people in the Midwest were making way more on their houses than they should. And when we first bought our house, we had a super low budget. So we bought a foreclosure and just paycheck by paycheck started doing some cool things to it and then ended up selling it for a huge profit. And we’re like, OK, well, let’s move in with the parents until the next foreclosure comes along. And in the meantime, I was living in the parents’ basement, I had found out that he’s cheated on me. And so now the next step is weird.
[00:05:45] CHRIS: Whew.
[00:05:47] CALLER: Yeah.
[00:05:48] CHRIS: Tea is not gonna solve your problems. Tea did the trick for me this morning.
[00:05:53] CALLER: No. Except like you know, honestly, God, a tea works, so. It’s magic. Like hot tea. Some Earl Gray, some chamomile. It’s just very soothing. I’ve been craving a lot of tea lately.
[00:06:08] CHRIS: Yeah. So you like tea over coffee?
[00:06:11] CALLER: I’m a coffee drinker, too. But coffee is good for making me aware that there is a world around me and tea is good for helping me kind of like, I don’t know, realize that [inaudible], tea is just very soothing.
[00:06:35] CHRIS: Good to know. Just so you know, your phone is a little staticky, but I think it’ll be fine.
[00:06:42] CALLER: OK. It could. I don’t know. I’ve, since moving, I think that my parents’ house doesn’t take my cell service as good as my old one did. If I have to drive, to, I don’t know a little farther away to get better reception, that’s possible. I’m also outside because my husband’s in the house and I don’t know. I didn’t wanna talk around him.
[00:07:07] CHRIS: Okay. Wait, hold on. Hold on. Because we’re talking about tea. And obviously that’s me easing into it. So you’re living, you’re living in your parents’ basement or his parents’ basement?
[00:07:17] CALLER: My parents’ basement. And he’s here with me because we’ve got a seven-year-old together and breaking everything to him while they don’t have a new house, just seems too harsh. So we’re taking things one day at a time looking for a new house. Because my son expected that anyway. And then when it’s time to go to the new house, I’d probably just hang back while they kind of settle in. I don’t know. It’s still all fresh enough where I don’t know what I’m doing.
[00:07:56] CHRIS: Yeah. I mean, this is. This is a grim situation you’re facing.
[00:08:04] CALLER: Yeah, but I’m also…
[00:08:06] CHRIS: I’m really sorry.
[00:08:08] CALLER: It’s OK. I’m not the, I’m in a way better position than I could be. So it’s cool. Because we made a profit off the last house, I’ve got some money to start me out for the next month. So does he. So I’m not worried about anybody moving on financially okay so that’s nice and, I don’t know. We’ll still, we’ll still both show up to parent teacher conferences and do all the right things for the kid. And so, I don’t know. I know that people after separation, divorce and things like this, they always say that it’s for the best and they always end up happier. So I know that they suck and they’re going to be uncomfortable for a while. But I also always trust everybody else’s advice. So. I don’t know. It’s probably just. I’m sure it’s all going to be OK.
[00:09:02] CHRIS: I’m sure, I’m sure in the long run that’s true. And you said this is all within the past couple weeks or month you said?
[00:09:10] CALLER: Yeah, it was dude, it was weird because he works in this huge office. And so I don’t know all his coworkers. And of course, it ended up being with a coworker. The other woman’s husband was sending me messages, being like, “hey, I think you should know your husband slept with my wife”. And I was like, “no, not my husband, no way, no way, no way.” Like, because he does, I don’t know. He treats me nicely with the exception of this. Like, he wakes me up with coffee in the morning. He does the grocery shopping and the laundry and he makes me dinner. He always asks what I want to eat. And he’s just really nice at taking care of me. And so I was just completely in denial. I was like “I don’t even know you.” And then he’s like, “no, no, no. Just ask your husband about this girl. I’m sure the truth will come out.” And so I did, I was like, “hey, I got these weird messages today from a guy.” And he was like, “what the heck I’ve heard of him, he’s crazy” and was just denying everything. And so it was weird because this guy was giving me a bunch of personal information about what the inside of my house looked like. And he was getting everything right. And he knew, like, secrets about my marriage. Like weird little fights that my husband and I have had over the years. And I just, there’s no way for a stranger to know this. And so it was super uncomfortable. And I’m trying to mentally get over how in the world does this guy know this? But I want to trust my husband. I have no reason not to trust my husband. So I’m like going to counseling and trying to work through things. And then we go on a little vacation to get away and then we come back. And then I get a picture of my husband and the other woman from the woman’s husband. I don’t know how he ended up with it. But he just, he had a lot of information and ended up being right in the end. And it was so weird to go through all that in the beginning and then get lied to about it by the person that I trusted most and then find out that it was all a lie.
[00:11:22] CHRIS: Yeah. When you say you got a picture of them together, it wasn’t a picture of them being intimate, was it?
[00:11:30] CALLER: No. Thank, thank goodness. I would have probably puked or something. I don’t know. It was just them in my house, on my couch together hanging out, but their arms were around each other. So I mean, it was definitely like you couldn’t, you couldn’t hide that. And then especially just the fact that I had asked because he had that day off work. And so I asked him when I called him. It sounded like maybe he was hanging out with a buddy and he was like “no” and sounded offended. And at the time, I thought he was just, I don’t know, crabby from being asked too many questions or something silly. But, yeah no, so it was pretty, I mean, with all the lying, it, it became pretty clear that this girl’s husband was telling me the truth and mine was not.
[00:12:20] CHRIS: Now, when you say that it was a picture of them in your house, do you mean your parents’, your parents’ basement?
[00:12:26] CALLER: Oh no no no no no. Our old house from when we were getting ready to sell it.
[00:12:29] CHRIS: Got it. Got it. So there’s two questions, here’s, OK. OK. So. This is a lot. I feel like I got…
[00:12:40] CALLER: Yeah.
[00:12:41] CHRIS: Yeah. I mean, more so for you than me. I’m just going to ask a bunch of questions. I want to be really sensitive, though, because to me it’s really clear you’re still processing this and I’m sure there’s still some elements of being shell shocked. So I want to be really respectful of that.
[00:12:54] CALLER: Oh, totally.
[00:12:55] CHRIS: So just let me know if and when, you’re like…
[00:12:58] CALLER: Oh no, you will not cross any lines with me, so.
[00:13:02] CHRIS: OK, here’s my here’s my first two questions then that I bet a lot of people are thinking themselves as they’re listening. One. Why didn’t you kick him out? And two, you had mentioned that you’re gonna set him and your kid up to live together. Why? Why are you, why are you gonna let him have, have custody of the kid? Because it sounds like he’s the one who pulled all the bullshit and then also established that there was a lot of lying around. So. So why are those two situations?
[00:13:36] CALLER: Well, part of why my husband and I worked out…well getting to know each other in the beginning related so well was over having issues with the way we were raised, thinking that our parents weren’t really paying attention to how it was affecting us psychologically, while getting older. He came from a background where his parents were pretty absent and mine were very much there. But with a lot of religion involved. And so, it, we just both felt like our parents weren’t really putting us first as their children in a lot of situations. And so we’ve always made a huge point to put our son first. That being said, we started dating when my son was like six months old. So it’s actually his son. But there has never been any sort of custody agreement with the other mom. We’ve always had him half and half the time. Everything’s been very amicable and everything has always been “is this in our son’s best interest?” So moving forward, I didn’t kick them out because I, I want to make sure that my son is good to go. So we’re sort of in the process. I’m just going to do it gently. I’ve never been able, I’ve just never had it in me to be such an asshole and be like, “okay, well, you’re on your own.” I also know that going forward, we’ll probably keep a bunch of our same routine. I’ll probably pick my son up from school and drop him off with his dad when it’s time for them to have dinner and go to bed. And it will probably work out some sort of schedule like that. So it’s not that he just gets our son, but also he’s kind of entitled.
[00:15:27] CHRIS: Right. So he’s not your biological son technically, you’ve just been there from the start.
[00:15:30] CALLER: No, no. He’s my stepson. That’s correct.
[00:15:33] CHRIS: Right. So I would imagine then, yeah, I can see that’s a really tangled up situation and…
[00:15:40] CALLER: Yeah, and it’s been pretty easy to work around in the past, but I guess it does have some, some issues now. But honestly, my husband is actively trying to apologize and save our relationship, which, that’s, that’s too much for me to deal with, but. I know that as much as I want to be able to see my son, and if I want him to spend some of the week with me and sleep at my future house, then he will be extremely OK with that and very respectful. So.
[00:16:19] CHRIS: Right. Right. That’s a rock and a hard place. Right of… I would imagine legally a court system is going to go well, “this is his biological son so he’s gonna be based with him.” And then if you kick your husband out, this poor kid who had nothing to do with this gets put out on his ass, too.
[00:16:35] CALLER: Yes. Yup. Exactly.
[00:16:40] CHRIS: Ooooh. Is your husband…when you say he’s like trying to apologize and rebuild things. Is this impeding his urgency as far as finding a new place? [pause] You know what I mean?
[00:16:50] CALLER: No, no, I don’t think so.
[00:16:54] CHRIS: That’s good, that’s good.
[00:16:56] CALLER: We’re, we’re all just kind of taking things day by day. I think that he’s really, it’s, it’s so hard to tell because I want to say I think he’s really genuine and being sorry and that he didn’t know what a mistake he was making until it was made. But again, I don’t know.
[00:17:18] CHRIS: The thing that’s hard to buy about that is… It came down to, hey, I have a photograph of you and this woman in our house.
[00:17:29] CALLER: Right, yeah.
[00:17:32] CHRIS: So, that’s a good, I think that’s a question…
[00:17:33] CALLER: Oh, but Chris, I mean, I have thought about this before where it was like, if someone… OK, I went to a show with one of my buddies and ended up drinking too much. And he tried to kiss me. And I was like, if I tell my husband, is he going to think that I brought this on? Is this going to cause relationship problems? Should I just, you know, say, should I just hide all this information so that there are no issues because it’s not worth it in the end, because I know that I didn’t kiss him and then nothing happened? And so I’ve tried to put myself in his shoes where I’m like, if I know that a mistake happened, that is not going to affect the relationship to avoid hurting other people, would I lie about it? Probably. So there’s a chance he was try – God, but also at the same time, it sounds so fucked up that I think that I’m just also trying to make excuses and trying to, I don’t know, put myself in a position where I don’t want him to completely disregard, I don’t know my humanity. Just so I keep trying to make up a situation where, I don’t know.
[00:18:52] CHRIS: I don’t know how much you’re in denial. I also don’t know you. I don’t know him. But just hearing the basic facts of it, I’ll say you’re giving him a lot of credit. You’re giving him a lot of credit because…
[00:19:03] CALLER: Yeah.
[00:19:03] CHRIS: You’re right obviously, there are situations where maybe you know, obviously, obviously there’s going to be situations where, where people flirt or where someone doesn’t realize you’re married and comes on strong or someone has too many drinks. And those are a lot different than, than what was clearly a situation…
[00:19:24] CALLER: That’s true, a lot of things had to happen for another woman to end up at my house.
[00:19:29] CHRIS: Yeah and if it gets to the point where her husband knows about specific fights you guys have had, this is far beyond, “Hey. Things went a little far.”
[00:19:38] CALLER: That’s true.
[00:19:39] CHRIS: This is to the point where someone else’s husband was able to glean so much of what was happening that they were able to reference secrets from your life. That’s not “I got too drunk at a bar” or…
[00:19:50] CALLER: That’s true.
[00:19:51] CHRIS: It’s “we’ve been married a while and it felt nice to be flirted with.”
[00:19:54] CALLER: I’m glad you bring that up.
[00:19:55] CHRIS: Yeah. I gotta say, I’m not trying to cause more trouble. I’m not trying to make it harder. I gotta say…
[00:20:02] CALLER: Oh, no –
[00:20:03] CHRIS: I also hope you’re standing up for yourself. I hope this guy’s not living in your parents fuckin’ basement because of your goodwill towards this kid and taking advantage of it because he’s taken advantage of enough stuff. If I may be so bold.
[00:20:16] CALLER: Sure. No, I think you’re right. I think that, that’s, that’s a good…perspective on things because, yeah, I just, it’s still so hard to wrap my head around and there’s a lot for me to process that I definitely lose little bits and pieces along the way because the other guy who was giving me all that support was, I don’t know. I felt like he was harassing me for a long time. So I was blocking Facebook accounts, I was blocking phone numbers he was texting me from and just, I don’t know. He was really persistent.
[00:20:53] CHRIS: I mean, he was probably losing his mind, right? He probably was put in a similar situation of shock and hurt and fear. He’s probably coming on strong and acting like an Internet lunatic or text message loony, like a stalker. He was probably losing it!
[00:21:05] CALLER: But, he also was I looked him up on the local court case Web site that will show everybody’s ongoing history, and he had so many open cases about him and stalking and things like that. It was pretty…
[00:21:23] CHRIS: [laughing] Whew, God!
[00:21:25] CALLER: Yeah.
[00:21:26] CHRIS: I don’t know if I’ve ever heard anyone who wound up in a more head spinning version of this than you, living in your parents basement…
[00:21:33] CALLER: [laughing] Oh, want me to drop another bomb?
[00:21:35] CHRIS: Always! I know what my job is.
[00:21:40] CALLER: So I said, “you have no reason to be talking to this girl at work anymore” because he would make casual conversation. Oh, the day that I broke it to him when I had the picture and he didn’t know I had the picture. I called and said, “you need to leave work now and come home and talk to me about something.” And he goes, “oh, it’s because her husband saw us talking on her break outside, isn’t it?” And I was like, “oh, didn’t know about that, but I’ve got something else to talk to you about.” So he, he comes home, we talk about it. And I was like, okay, well, it’s you. I mean, [inaudible]. I don’t think that you have any reason to wait.
[00:22:20] CHRIS: Oh wait, can you say that again? Can you say that again? You got staticky so you said, yeah.
[00:22:25] CALLER: I was just telling him he had no reason to talk to this girl at work. He’s kind of in a managerial position. So whether she needed help with anything. He’s like, “okay, if she comes over to my desk again, I’ll just glare at her until she walks away. You’re right. There’s no reason to talk to her.” So a couple days ago, he came home and said, “I need to tell you that I had to talk to her today. But she told me that her husband O.D.’d on heroin and died this morning.” So also, my source of information is dead because he overdosed because they’re both heroin addicts. And so now she’s messaging me, telling me about her relationship with my husband. But I know she’s throwing in some lies and I’m dealing with liars and… I don’t know, and people who, I don’t know, my source is gone. But I guess it probably shouldn’t matter. I’m a little relieved because I was feeling stalked. I had called the local county courthouse and they said that they wanted me to file an order of protection so he couldn’t message me anymore. And I guess that’s not a thing now. But that’s just something else I’m still processing.
[00:23:39] CHRIS: I have, I have to ask. I have to ask. And I hate to ask this question. I never ask this question, but just because it’s people listening are going to wonder. I just have to – this, this is all, this is all true? This is all true?
[00:23:54] CHRIS: [music transition] Let’s pause there. I had to ask, right? Because this one’s building in a crazy way. Had to ask. We got ads, guys. Let’s go ahead, check those out. We’ll be right back with more phone call.
[00:24:13] [AD BREAK]
[00:27:04] CHRIS: [music transition] Thanks again to all of our advertisers. Now let’s get back to the phone call.
[00:27:10] CHRIS: I have, I have to ask. And I hate to ask this question. I never ask this question, but just because it’s people listening are going to wonder. I just have to – this, this is all, this is all true? This is all true?
[00:27:22] CALLER: Oh, God. Does it not sound true?
[00:27:24] CHRIS: It sounds so true, and that’s…
[00:27:25] CALLER: It’s 100% true.
[00:27:27] CHRIS: It sounds so true, and that’s so fucked up. That’s why I gotta ask!
[00:27:31] CALLER: It’s so true and so fucked up that I mean, I know, I got my sisters listening to Beautiful Anonymous and so, they’re gonna be like “oh, that’s my sister” when they hear this, so.
[00:27:42] CHRIS: Yeah, this is not a story that you can mistake. This is not one where you’re like, “that might be my sister.” OK. OK.
[00:27:49] CALLER: [laughing] No.
[00:27:50] CHRIS: OK. So another question. Just be, and again… First of all, I’m going to say this, just in all reality. I don’t know what your relationship with your parents is like now. You said when you were a kid, you weren’t so close. You’re living with them. You have sisters. I don’t know if they’re your support network. I don’t know if you’re seeing somebody who can, you know, some sort of therapist who can help keep you afloat but I, I do, I will just say, as a compassionate human being. This is a situation where you’re in over your head and it sounds like you’re handling it remarkably well. But there’s also shock involved and pain involved, and –
[00:28:25] CALLER: Yeah.
[00:28:26] CHRIS: Are you, do you have that safety net? Because if not, you gotta start building one.
[00:28:33] CALLER: I think I do. Yeah, I do. I still have been seeing my therapist regularly. It’s uncomfortable because she started as my therapist and then my husband started joining me because it was, I don’t know, it was making our relationship better. It was cool. And it was just nice at home. So he started coming with me. So he’s still been going to those, and I think that she’s really hoping things are gonna work out. But I also need to see someone on my own again. So I probably need to just find someone else. But other than that, my family at home…Yeah, they’re, they’re making sure that I’m not spending too much time alone, and…
[00:29:21] CHRIS: Good, good.
[00:29:23] CALLER: Yeah, I think, I think they’re here for me if I need them
[00:29:24] CHRIS: You can vent and you can air it all out honestly.
[00:29:27] CALLER: Yeah.
[00:29:28] CHRIS: OK, another painful question that I feel…a responsibility to ask. So these people were drug addicts and you’ve seen this in court documents, this is a verifiable, true thing. Do you know, do you know if your husband was tangled up in that at all?
[00:29:45] CALLER: I don’t think he would be. No. I think I would be able to recognize those signs that are – I’ve had people that I’ve had to cut out of my life for that reason. [pause] No, I don’t think so.
[00:29:58] CHRIS: Because here’s the reason I bring it up, here’s the reason I bring it up. Is that…and this is pain – I’m gonna say something painful and it might be something that you’ve talked about with people or thought about yourself. It might not be. But I will say that – and I, I have compassion. I have compassion for people who use drugs. I’ve lost, one of my best friends of all time to heroin, I’ve talked about it on the show before. That being said. Even hearing that your husband was, was sleeping with someone who’s caught up in the throes of addiction, raises some real concern that – He’s tangled up in some stuff that you don’t want a 7-year-old kid involved in. And I know that that’s a whole mess, but –
[00:30:46] CALLER: Right, totally. No that is something where if my son was somehow and, like, affected by that, I would have no problem turning this into a big, nasty legal court case.
[00:31:01] CHRIS: Yeah.
[00:31:02] CALLER: Because like I said, we’ve always, always made sure to put my son first. And I guess I should add, my husband denies that they ever slept together, but it’s just so hard to believe –
[00:31:15] CHRIS: Wow. He’s still denying it!
[00:31:19] CALLER: Yeah, he says that she came over to hang out and that that’s it. But I just – Oh, I just don’t know. It’s just, it seems so crazy.
[00:31:30] CHRIS: Was this hang – Was this hanging out after you had already expressed misgivings about this relationship or, or this chaos that started to happen?
[00:31:40] CALLER: The…OK, [inaudible] husband told me that my husband and his wife went on multiple dates and again, that could all be made up. I don’t know. I only have evidence from this one time. This one day that he was off work when she came over to the house and he says that nothing happened. They were just hanging out. But then there’s a picture of him with his arm around her, so…
[00:32:06] CHRIS: Who took the picture? This is perplex – The more I hear about this, the more I have to say, I can feel what you’re feeling because this is perplexing.
[00:32:15] CALLER: [inaudible] Lie about it, he just is lying about it.
[00:32:18] CHRIS: No, he’s lying about something. Who took the picture of them in your house?
[00:32:23] CALLER: He did. I can tell it’s his arm in the selfie position. So. I don’t remember what I was gonna say about that. Oh, no. OK. So if she did just come over, there’s a really good chance he didn’t know that she was crazy until after the fact because they were just work buddies prior. And then he found out through me being like, “this guy’s been messaging me and it’s making me so uncomfortable.” And now that more of the truth has come out, I guess he went back to her and he was like, “why does your husband know all this stuff?” And she was like, “well, he’s beating me to get all the information.” And he was telling me that the girl was showing up to work with bruises. And again, I have, I have not been to his workplace. I’ve never met this woman. I don’t know what’s true and what’s false about that stuff. But I, I don’t think that he would be caught up in the drugs because I don’t think he would have picked her specifically if he had known about the drugs. It just doesn’t seem like him. I think he’s, he’s smarter than that.
[00:33:34] CHRIS: Yeah. This is, I can’t imagine. I mean, this is head spinning for me. The more I hear about.
[00:33:42] CALLER: Yeah, and I feel like, I really hope I’m not jumping around or leaving out weird pieces. I don’t know.
[00:33:49] CHRIS: I mean, it’s sad.
[00:33:50] CALLER: Honestly, I didn’t think that I was going to talk to you about this the whole time.
[00:33:54] CHRIS: Of course you would -. I mean, –
[00:33:55] CALLER: How far into the call are we?
[00:33:57] CHRIS: Hey, [laughing] we got 33 minutes left, if you got other stuff that you think supercedes this mystery, by all means it’s your call bring it up, but –
[00:34:06] CALLER: Oh no, I just feel like this has been my whole life lately, and –
[00:34:09] CHRIS: Of course it has.
[00:34:10] CALLER: At first I was like, “it would be cool to talk to a third party to get some outside perspective, sure, but then, I dunno.
[00:34:22] CHRIS: Here’s the outside perspective. Here’s the outside perspective. Speaking only for myself, I imagine maybe echoing some thoughts of anybody who might be listening in the future. This is a… terrifically complex and confusing situation. Whatever is going on. My guess is that part of why you’re so clearly still processing it is because, seems like there’s clearly pieces of this puzzle you don’t have. And it sounds confusing. I mean, this guy who really stalked you, who you have been able to verify was a very troubled human being, is now dead. Was giving you all this information and, you know, at the very least, your husband’s lying about something. It’s weird because he’s still insisting they didn’t sleep together, which at this point it’s, it’s wrecked his life to a degree that it’s like, well, why would he still lie about it? I, I don’t know. I mean, I’m not trying to sit here and be a Monday morning quarterback or have any opinion in something that’s very real in your life, but, I, if he wasn’t sleeping with her, then it was drugs or something, right?
[00:35:29] CALLER: Yeah.
[00:35:30] CHRIS: He’s lying about something. Because what, because that’s the thing, if…
[00:35:36] CALLER: It is that there’s still something missing, but the most important thing, because we’re just wondering where to go from here. Like, the therapist was wondering if she can save our relationship, but if I can’t trust that even when I press an issue that the truth is going to come out?
[00:35:51] CHRIS: Yeah.
[00:35:53] CALLER: I can’t. I can’t do that for the rest of my life. I’m twenty-seven.
[00:35:57] CHRIS: Yeah. Because I mean it sounds like, it sounds like…it sounds like you’re – It’s legitimate to say that, I mean, you said he was cheating and there’s some elements to that, which that is true, but it’s – I don’t wanna put words in your mouth. It sounds like even you’re still not 100 percent certain what’s true and what’s not.
[00:36:18] CALLER: Oh, totally yeah.
[00:36:20] CHRIS: Damn, that’s messed up! That’s messed up. I‘m so sorry. It’s like a soap opera.
[00:36:30] CALLER: Oh, it’s okay.
[00:36:32] CHRIS: It’s like half soap opera, half Breaking Bad. Where you’re like, what is…?
[00:36:36] CALLER: [laughing] I’ve never seen Breaking Bad, but the soap opera part I could totally get.
[00:36:38] CHRIS: Don’t watch it. Don’t watch it anytime soon. It’s about people who live layers upon layers of secret lives. And whereas on the surface, they have –
[00:36:47] CALLER: Oh, no that would fuck me up, I can’t [laughing].
[00:36:49] CHRIS: – Happy suburban life hiding all sorts of layers of things. Yeah. Maybe not right now. Maybe right now you need to stick to like the Great British Bake Off.
[00:36:57] CALLER: I’ve heard it’s good, though.
[00:36:58] CHRIS: What, Breaking Bad? Or British Bake Off? The answer is that both are awesome.
[00:37:01] CALLER: Actually both!
[00:37:02] CHRIS: Yeah, both are amazing. But I tell ya, I’ve been having some stressful times lately in my own life, I won’t make it about me, but I will tell you – and nothing like what you are dealing with – I will say, even having this – man, the Great British Bake Off. There is not a better show if you just need to kick back and decompress. It’s pleasant, English people baking pies and then it’s a reality show where they get eliminated. But when they do, they’re so gracious and nice about it. And very often someone will get kicked off and their exit interview will be them going, “you know what, it was the right call. I’m in over my head. All these other bakers are a little more talented and I’m just so excited to see what they can accomplish moving forward.” And they say them with like, you know, like Manchester accents, like Mancunian accents. And you’re like, “if this was an American reality show, they’d be throwing cupcakes across the room and screaming and yelling and accusing each other of wrongdoing. And holy shit, is this just the most pleasant, relaxing show?” And if there’s one thing I can recommend to you right now, it’s go get lost in the Great British Bake Off because it’s a pleasant diversion from real life! [sighs] That’s not going to solve any of your problems, I’m sorry to say.
[00:38:10] CALLER: No, I got the day off. I got some time for some British Bake Off.
[00:38:15] CHRIS: Damn, man, I’m really, I’m really, sorry you’re mixed up with this, and I again –
[00:38:23] CALLER: Me too, but I’ll get through it, everybody does.
[00:38:25] CHRIS: I gotta ask another tough question, another tough question, another tough question just about your son. And I’ll say this to you – that it’s, it’s so fuckin’ noble and awesome that you keep saying “my son” because I would imagine a lot of cases when it’s not your biological son, that when things get fractured like this, the language starts shifting to his son. But the, I think it speaks to the fact that you’re still very protective of this child and connected to this child. And that’s such a huge breath of relief. Now, another uncomfortable question, being that there have been some elements of drug users, of people who are on record in the courts. Have you thought, have you thought about asking any sort of authority to at least look into this situation? I know where I grew up in New Jersey with the division of Youth and Family Services, some places it’s Child Protective Service. Have you thought about making a call or do you feel like that would be more disruptive for the kid?
[00:39:23] CALLER: I feel like that would be more disruptive. And I honestly, I have known enough drug users. And my husband and I spent enough time together and share enough, I would know if something like that was going on. I would 100% know.
[00:39:42] CHRIS: Yeah. I’m sorry to keep harping on it. I’m sorry to keep harping on it. But when you tell me that one of the four central players in this story died of an O.D. and that one of the other two is apparently also addicted, it’s just hard to not immediately think of, because –
[00:39:57] CALLER: Yeah. No, I think that that part just was completely accidental for getting mixed up in this.
[00:40:07] CHRIS: Yeah, and probably a contributor as to why it’s so fuckin’ nuts.
[00:40:07] CALLER: My husband is very smart and very charismatic and attractive, and he’s probably a little arrogant. He said he was like, “I was just wanting some attention.” I guess things in our relationship are rocky and I didn’t know it. And so he said that he was wanting some attention. So he invited one of fifteen different options that he could have had. He doesn’t say [inaudible]. Does anybody want to hang out?
[00:40:44] CHRIS: Repeat that again. So he was saying he had fifteen different options?
[00:40:49] CALLER: Well, he was making it sound like he could have asked any of the women in his office, and they all probably would come over to hang out. He just he makes it sound like…And I’ve seen, I’ve seen the way that they comment on his Facebook posts because your Facebook friends with people in your office. Then, yeah, I could totally see that if he was like, “hey, do you want to come over and hang out?” There are a couple different people who would gladly say yes. And so I think that he just accidentally picked one who was a user and didn’t know what –
[00:41:24] CHRIS: But so fuckin’ what, that – I’m gonna go ahead and get mad right now. And it sounds like you’re someone who doesn’t wanna get mad. Oh, that’s your – that’s your response! “I could have picked any of these fifteen people to give me this atten-, Oh. And I happened to pick the craziest one.” First of all, what a fucking surprise that you’re someone who entertains thoughts like that. “You happen to pick the crazy one.” Oh yeah. It’s real shocking. Second of all. What are these Facebook comments and why is he not shutting them down? Well, what is that about? What is that about? I don’t like that. I don’t like that on behalf of you! I don’t like that.
[00:42:00] CALLER: OK so I guess I should –
[00:42:01] CHRIS: He should be stepping in and saying that’s not appropriate!
[00:42:02] CALLER: Oh, God.
[00:42:04] CHRIS: I don’t like that, sorry.
[00:42:05] CALLER: No, no it’s just, it’s too innocent where you can’t shut that stuff down. But from a female perspective, you know…
[00:42:15] CHRIS: You could smell a rat.
[00:42:16] CALLER: There’s a big garbage truck rolling by. Hold on. Can you hear that?
[00:42:18] CHRIS: Yeah, the big garbage truck is named your husband. That’s the big garbage truck that’s rolling by. The big garbage truck is sitting in your parents basement right now.
[00:42:26] CALLER: No, this is so hard though because he’s still, he’s still so nice –
[00:42:33] CHRIS: I bet he is.
[00:42:34] CALLER: …and still taking such – It’s like, it’s the most unfortunate situation because he seems, because how shitty of me would it be if I had cheated on my husband, realized I had done the most fucked up thing and was going to turn around and never do that again, and I am trying so hard and everybody hears the stories like, “oh yeah, what a fucking asshole.” And I’m trying so hard to make things right. It’s, I always try, I just. I don’t want to be the asshole who’s like “yeah I’ll fuck you over and over and over again.” –
[00:43:07] CHRIS: Of course.
[00:43:08] CALLER: – If, if he is trying to fix things. And again, the most important part is if I can’t completely trust him, obviously this is not going to work out. And I’m heavily leaning that way. But I also have a really hard time because this was so shocking and my husband was so sweet and so perfect to me that.
[00:43:27] CHRIS: Of course. And I’m not trying –
[00:43:28] CALLER: I can’t, I can’t just –
[00:43:30] CHRIS: …walk away. Of course. And I’m not tryna say “no, walk away. That would be, I’ve known you, I’ve talked to you anonymously for thirty-six minutes.
[00:43:36] CALLER: I’m just worried about giving off all this shitty information. And then he listens to Beautiful Anonymous [laughing]
[00:43:44] CHRIS: He listens? He listens to the show?
[00:43:48] CALLER: Oh, no, I don’t think so, but we’re both off together today and he was starting to make me breakfast when I got through and I was like, “holy shit, just so you know, I called Beautiful Anonymous. I’m probably going to be gone for like an hour.”
[00:44:02] CHRIS: Oh, he must be shitting his pants.
[00:44:03] CALLER: So his eyes got really big and he’s like, go, go, go! Like, I don’t know. He was excited and supportive, so…
[00:44:07] CHRIS: Yeah, was he? Yeah he’s gonna be real excited when he hears this.
[00:44:08] CALLER: So, now that I’ve been gone for so long he’s gonna know that I got through. Then when he finds out that this is what I talked about, he’s gonna, I don’t know.
[00:44:16] CHRIS: He’s gonna shit his pants.
[00:44:17] CALLER: I mean, like he’s a real person. He’s a real human. He’s gonna be ashamed and he’s gonna be uncomfortable.
[00:44:22] CHRIS: Of course, well, and I get that, too.
[00:44:24] CALLER: But it sucks, because he has been so chill. But I also want to be so angry. But also, what if? What if? And I am not making this an excuse to try to forget or ignore everything. That is not what I’m doing. But still, what if he is a real human who realized he fucked up and he’s not, I don’t know.
[00:44:47] CHRIS: Yeah.
[00:44:48] CALLER: When he realized he was an alcoholic, he cold turkey’d alcohol and it, he’s been two years sober now and he’s just, when he found out that he was gonna have a son, he quit smoking and he cold turkey-d that and just, he learns lessons a hard way and through a bunch of therapy, we have found out that that is from his upbringing and that stuff that happens to you when you are a kid legitimately affects you when you’re an adult. And it’s just, I don’t know. Brains are weird. And the way that they sculpt you as a human is just weird. But, I don’t, like, there is a chance he realized I fucked up and he will never think about that ever again. So it’s also hard for me to just be like, fuck you, fuck you, fuck you…
[00:45:38] CHRIS: Of course.
[00:45:39] CALLER: …on Beautiful Anonymous, and then he listens. And I, I don’t know, I’m…
[00:45:44] CHRIS: No, his heart’s gonna be touched hearing you be so fair and gracious and honest about it. And I have to say too. You’re making me feel, you’re making me realize what a basic dumb ass I’m being, ’cause what a beautiful thing you just said about humanity and, and the complexity of the human brain. I’m getting mad on your behalf for the simple things on this one. But you are in the middle of something –
[00:46:05] CALLER: [laughing] But it’s also really easy, I mean, you heard this information –
[00:46:08] CHRIS: Of course, of course, I got – Hearing that…
[00:46:11] CALLER: Yeah, there’s just so many different parts to it.
[00:46:12] CHRIS: Hearing that any part of his, of his breakdown of this was, “hey, I could’ve had any woman I wanted and I picked the crazy one” that, that set me off. I’m sorry, but that set me off, you know?
[00:46:27] CALLER: Understandably, but have you ever said something where you’re like, oh, my God, why did that just come out of my mouth?
[00:46:35] CHRIS: Everyday of my life. [laughing] Everyday of my – and I’m not perfect, I’m not perfect! I’m not perfect. Being married is hard work. Everybody messes up. And of course, of course.
[00:46:48] CALLER: Oh, God. We had RSVP’d to this wedding that we had for some mutual friends this past weekend and hearing them talk about how you’re gonna go through all these hard times and you need to sit next to each other and work through the hard times like it was the sweetest saying and also makes me so angry at the same time [laughing]. So yeah, it is work.
[00:47:11] CHRIS: Yeah. It is work and it is hard and I’m glad, I’m glad you broke down that about his past addictions and how he’s broken them and how he’s learned. And it is a good reminder that life is not simple. It’s not simple –
[00:47:28] CALLER: Right.
[00:47:29] CHRIS: – And I’m givin’ the simple reactions and I got to challenge myself to be better than that, on your behalf.
[00:47:35] CALLER: That’s, it’s expected and appropriate to have a simple reaction, it’s not your job to –
[00:47:39] CHRIS: But I also hope you’re… have you, have – Have you given yourself time to get pissed? Have you given yourself time to think, cause you’re thinking very nobly about the kid and even him to some degree and protective of him, which I understand he’s been your husband for years. Having said, are you giving yourself time to just unleash?
[00:47:54] CALLER: Oh, oh I’ve been…
[00:47:58] CHRIS: [music transition] I hope the answer is, “yeah, I get pissed” cause I’m getting pissed on her behalf. Bet a lot of us are. Bet a lot of us are also thinking, man you know what, my life is pretty good. But I wish there were just certain products or services available in my life that could make it that much better. Luckily for you, we got advertisers that offer such things. Check them out, use the promo codes, helps the show when you do. We’ll be right back after this with more phone call.
[00:48:21] [AD BREAK]
[00:50:41] CHRIS: Thanks again, to everybody who sponsors Beautiful Anonymous. Now let’s finish off the phone call.
[00:50:47] CHRIS: Have you given yourself time to think cause you’re thinking very nobly about the kid and even him to some degree and protective of him, which I understand he’s been your husband for years. Are you giving yourself time to just unleash?
[00:50:59] CALLER: Yes, yes.
[00:51:01] CHRIS: Good, good.
[00:51:02] CALLER: And my problem in the beginning was unleashing everything onto my husband. And then when my therapist heard that she’s like, “ooh, he’s, he’s a person. You cannot do that to him.” [laughing] And so instead she gave me a notebook. So…
[00:51:17] CHRIS: [quietly] She gave you a notebook, that’s good.
[00:51:18] CALLER: I’ve been doing a lot of writing, but seems to be pretty, pretty helpful.
[00:51:21] CHRIS: Yeah, sounds like that’s – Happy to hear your therapist is helping you stay firm, but direct it.
[00:51:29] CALLER: Yeah, totally. She’s expensive, but worth it. I wish everybody could –
[00:51:34] CHRIS: [laughing] I would say – I think that’s the tagline for my therapist, too. Expensive but worth it. Therapy 2018. I just – Man, you are…
[00:51:47] CALLER: [laughing] God, I just – I don’t know where I would be without her. She’s, I went through like five therapists until I found this one, and she happens to be the most expensive but also the most real, and… I don’t know, it was important to find someone who is a good match for me.
[00:52:07] CHRIS: I mean sounds like, I mean, you just boiled down my whole HBO special to about 45 seconds. [laughing] She’s expensive, but a really good match. Beautiful.
[00:52:21] CALLER: Yeah. I preordered your “Lose Well” book.
[00:52:23] CHRIS: Oh, thank you so much.
[00:52:24] CALLER: And from all of the – Yeah. You’re welcome. I’m pretty excited to read it. From all of your promo I keep, it’s really easy to just wanna take any situation I hear of and try to make it relatable. I keep hoping that it’s gonna make this shitty situation more acceptable? Can you…? I don’t know. Can you tell me a little bit about your book and just what you really mean by “Lose Well” without telling me – [laughing]
[00:52:56] CHRIS: [laughing] I’m gonna tell you right now, there will instantly in our Facebook group be conspiracy theorists who assume that this was all, that you are some improv actor from New York that I put up to making up the most fantastic story we’ve heard in a while just to give… I will say this, but I don’t wanna tie in –
[00:53:12] CALLER: [laughing] Don’t say anything and drive them all nuts!
[00:53:17] CHRIS: [laughing] It’s all true. It’s all –
[00:53:19] CALLER: I’ll read it!
[00:53:20] CHRIS: Yeah, this is all subterfuge.
[00:53:23] CALLER: The garbage truck’s coming again [laughing]
[00:53:24] CHRIS: Yeah the garbage truck sure is, he’s cookin’ you breakfast right now. Here’s the thing about the book. And we can’t even hear the garbage truck. Don’t worry about it. Don’t stress about it.
[00:53:35] CALLER: Oh, cool.
[00:53:36] CHRIS: I’ll say this, I’ll say this. I’m not looking to tie your story into a plug for my book. But since you asked, I will say this. A lot of what I believe in my heart that shows up in the book is that when you face failure in life and when you kinda get knocked down hard in life, that it’s, it’s brutal and confusing and overwhelming, but also very often represents opportunity if you can see it. Now, I speak a lot of that from the perspective of a creative person who faces rejection a lot or who faces public scrutiny a lot when your work doesn’t go in the direction you want. You know, like even coming off of a TV show where it’s slowly dying week by week as the numbers drop and everybody gets to watch them publicly and they’re tweeting about it. That is not nearly as difficult as what you’re, you’re dealing with. What you’re dealing with is a far more real-world situation. Whereas my life, I’m lucky to be in an industry where through resilience, I’ve survived in it. But it is ultimately an exciting game. I know that. That being said, it’s almost like the Warren Buffett thing when the economy tanked in 2008. Warren Buffett said this is actually the investing opportunity of a lifetime. You can get in while things are a disaster. So if you can weather the storm of the worst situations, those are very often the ones where you learn the most about who you really are. And that’s something that’s at the core of the book that I really believe and that I think that in the midst of all of this dark shit you’re dealing with – one thing that I can just say from talking to you is even your ability to communicate it this clearly and this fairly towards all parties involved while dealing with a lot of pain and confusion shows me that you’re a strong person. You’re always gonna be learning a lot. It seems like you always have the right priorities about trying to build a good life for yourself and your son and the people you love. And I do sincerely hope that when these clouds pass and as you learn more and more about the truth of this, and that this very fucked up thing becomes a little more distant from your life, that as you move forward, you are stronger, smarter for it, and that you managed to kind of co-exist with the pain in a way where you still also manage to build something even better out of whatever’s being burned down right now. [short pause] Boom, boom.
[00:56:08] CALLER: Yeah, thanks. Yeah. [laughing]
[00:56:14] CHRIS: Who cares about my opinion? [laughing] You got a lot going on. We have about 14 minutes left.
[00:56:23] CALLER: Oh, my God, that feels so crazy, everybody always says it flies. But it really does.
[00:56:28] CHRIS: Yeah, it’s funny. Ever since you kind of went to bat and defended your husband when I was starting to get worked up, it is, there is something fair to be said that this guy did some dirty shit. Sky digit dirty. He lied about it.
[00:56:40] CALLER: Oh, yeah.
[00:56:41] CHRIS: It does sound like he got caught up with some real fuckin’ wackadoo shit on his own though too, huh? And like, it’s so funny to hear that these people who this guy who outed him to you was so fucking bonkers that even with you being pissed at him, you can still go, “I sympathize that you’re caught up with some real lunatic shit right now.” I’m so –
[00:57:02] CALLER: Yeah.
[00:57:03] CHRIS: I’m so tempted to say put him on the phone, but that’s a real exploitative and bad idea.
[00:57:08] CALLER: Ooooh. That kind of sounds…I don’t know. Would that be juicy for you? Actually no, that’d probably be rude cause again, he’s a human and –
[00:57:17] CHRIS: He’s a human being –
[00:57:18] CALLER: I still, [laughing] I, I do. I’ve got these back and forth little mental battles where sometimes I’m like, oh, yeah, I feel like shouting at a person right now. And then I’m like, no, that’s not. I mean, in 10 seconds, where is that gonna get me?
[00:57:33] CHRIS: There’s been a lot of people listening who are probably like “get him on the phone, Gethard!” And there’s a part of me that wants to. But at the end of the day, I mean, at the end of the day, I think I’d be very kind and fair to him as well. This is what I try to be as a host in general, but that would be exploiting your story and putting him on the spot for potential shaming, which it sounds like, you’re not very interested in that. I would ultimately feel was a click bait thing to do and we try to be better than that here. Who wants to click bait? But if he wanted to talk, I think I’d say to him the simple thing I’d ask. Here’s the two things I’d ask. In case it, case it helps you in any way. If I was gonna talk to your husband theoretically, which is probably a bad idea –
[00:58:18] CALLER: Sure.
[00:58:19] CHRIS: Here’s the things I would ask. 1. When are you gonna give this nice lady the whole truth? Whatever you got caught up in, dude, you got in over your head. You also lied. She doesn’t have the whole story. Even if you think you’ve given it to her. She doesn’t feel secure in that, so when are you gonna sit down – drop the arrogance, drop the charm, just let your guard down? Say, “I was a piece shit and here’s how”. 2. This lady loves this kid, and I know biologically it’s your kid. But if you’re in a situation where you’re still caught up in any shit? This lady would take care of that kid while you go sort it out. And have you thought about that? Because if that kid’s in trouble, he’s got somebody in his life right now who is gonna keep him out of trouble. And if you can’t tell the truth about whatever is going on, that means you’re still caught up in it on some level. And this kid deserves to be spared from that. If you’re, if everything was driven by your bad childhood, are you making, are you taking every step you can take to make sure that this little 7-year-old boy doesn’t suffer from that as well, because…It’s fucked up. Those are the two questions I would ask. She ever gonna get the full truth? Because if not, stop trying to get away with it, you know? Not 85 percent of the story, not 90 percent of the story. 100 percent of the story. That’s the terms and conditions to even entertain that this relationship might survive. You don’t feel like you’ve gotten that. Also. Let’s think about this kid first. Should he be hanging out with you right now, dude? Those are the two big questions I would ask.
[01:00:08] CALLER: I guess we’ll never know. I’m not gonna go in there and hunt him down. My parents have a pretty big house, actually. There’s a chance that I would spend the time just looking for him.
[01:00:20] CHRIS: No, I don’t want you to go wandering. I mean, if he, if he –
[01:00:23] CALLER: [laughing] Also, that’s part of why I’m outside. I would completely lose cell service. It would just be gone.
[01:00:28] CHRIS: Look, I mean, if he wants to call us back and say, let’s do a companion episode where I’ll do some soul bearing with you. Yeah. The voicemail number is 8 0 2 3 9 2 3 2 8 8. He’s welcome to leave a voicemail.
[01:00:40] CALLER: OK [laughing]
[01:00:41] CHRIS: I’ll give him an hour to air out his side of it as well.
[01:00:44] CALLER: Yeah, no I will…
[01:00:45] CHRIS: Whatever works.
[01:00:46] CALLER: I’ll offer that to him and he might take you up on it. He really might.
[01:00:49] CHRIS: Who knows? I mean, I don’t – I also don’t want you to turn your pain into entertainment of others.
[01:00:56] CALLER: No, I mean, this is. This is fine with me.
[01:01:02] CHRIS: You’re tough, you’re, you’re a strong person.
[01:01:07] CALLER: I think I’m losing you. I’m going to walk around a little bit.
[01:01:10] CHRIS: Do your, do your parents know about everything that’s happened in the basement?
[01:01:18] CALLER: Not everything, everything, but enough of the detail. My parents, I’ve always tried to be careful with them. My mom is extremely religious and I feel like, like whatever I tell her, she’s just going to feel this need to pray forever. And I feel like it would cause mental exhaustion for her. And I just. There’s no need for that. So I tell her enough so that she can be that support for me, but not too much to where. I don’t know, she’s just praying all day.
[01:01:57] CHRIS: Hold on I have to sneeze [sneeze]. Excuse me. So sorry. That was a for real sneeze.
[01:02:04] CALLER: [laughing] I don’t say bless you.
[01:02:07] CHRIS: That’s fair, that’s fair.
[01:02:08] CALLER: [laughing] I’m an atheist now and I feel like saying bless you is weird and very forceful, so.
[01:02:13] CHRIS: My wife, my wife says salud.
[01:02:15] CALLER: Good health is the – What does she say?
[01:02:19] CHRIS: Salud. I think that’s what they say.
[01:02:21] CALLER: What does that mean?
[01:02:22] CHRIS: In Italy, salud? I think S-A-L-U-D..is that Italian? The Italian response to…?
[01:02:27] CALLER: No, isn’t that just how you say hello?
[01:02:30] CHRIS: I don’t know, isn’t hello bon – bongiorno? Now we’re talking, now you. Now we’re trying to suss out basic Italian, that’s what this is. After the most fascinating call we’ve had in one of, one of the most fascinating calls ever, a story of intrigue and mystery and seduction and lost love and drugs. It all comes down to you and I trying to remember how to say hello in Italian. That’s what it turns into, Harry. That’s what we’re pedaling over here.
[01:03:00] CALLER: Well, we thought we were going to honeymoon in Italy for a little bit. So I tried to learn a little bit of Italian. But I’m not gonna be 100 percent accurate I guess. I just thought it was a greeting of some sort.
[01:03:15] CHRIS: I went to Italy when I was 17.
[01:03:18] CALLER: You went there?
[01:03:19] CHRIS: Yeah, I went there. And I didn’t make any effort to learn any Italian because [sarcastic voice] I’m an American and things work our way and they know English anyway. That’s how my…Oh, it’s Spanish. Salud means “your health” in Spanish. It’s used as a toast.
[01:03:34] CALLER: Oh, OK.
[01:03:36] CHRIS: And my wife says it after a sneeze.
[01:03:39] CALLER: Well now I feel extremely ignorant –
[01:03:40] CHRIS: As do I.
[01:03:40] CALLER: – Sorry to anybody who, I don’t know [laughs] like banging their head on their desk about how I don’t know what salud means or is [laughs]. Now I know.
[01:03:51] CHRIS: [laughing] Listen, everybody’s ignorant about something. And if there’s one thing I’ve learned through this show, it’s that admitting your ignorance often and publicly is a really good way to remind people that you’re out here trying to learn and trying to become a more well rounded human being.
[01:04:13] CALLER: Oh totally. But I think that a lot of your audience are some pretty, I don’t know, genuine people who are just trying to do the best they can.
[01:04:21] CHRIS: They are, man! I get to interact with them online and I get to meet ’em out on the road. And I tell you, it’s a lot of people who are just like, thoughtful. A lot of, you know, what people have been saying to me lately? That’s really meaningful. A lot of people go, I listen your show, ’cause it’s just nice to hear what other people are dealing with. It’s just good to remind yourself that other people deal with things, too. And God damn it. Your story is gonna remind other people “hey I’m not dealing with as much as that lady’s dealing with. And God bless her.” Not to say that, you just made it clear that you don’t like that phrase! Salud to her. Salud to her.
[01:05:02] CALLER: [laughing] No that’s fine, I’m not, I’m not that ignorant where I’m like, oh, screw everybody of their own religion. I mean, I still try to be really respectful of my mom.
[01:05:09] CHRIS: Of course.
[01:05:10] CALLER: I debated for a long time if I should tell her I’m an atheist or not, but I ended up doing it.
[01:05:17] CHRIS: Yeah, you gotta be honest.
[01:05:18] CALLER: Man, religion just brings so much guilt. I couldn’t deal with it.
[01:05:22] CHRIS: Brings a lot of beauty to some people’s lives when it breaks the right way. It can be the support system that one needs. I respect it. It can be a beautiful thing.
[01:05:31] CALLER: Yeah, that is something that was really a hurdle for me after leaving religion. I decided at 20 that I didn’t like all the answers to all the questions that I had. That they didn’t feel like enough of an answer. Like things were still too vague. So after deciding that I wasn’t going to have a belief system, I noticed that I became less comforted. In all these times when before I would, because my mom being really religious, I was raised also just like her. And so everything like, I would just pray and feel comfort about everything. And I had a huge support system in the church. And now it’s just like, I don’t know when I’m flying…I’m afraid of going down because then what happens? And, just I don’t know. Stuff like this where I have to deal through my own emotion, I can’t be like, “oh, well, I’ll just trust God that he’s working things out for me now.” It’s just like, this very, I don’t know, like you are on your own. So I totally think that religion can be a beautiful, comforting thing. And my mom, I don’t know, my mom just loves all of the, I don’t know. The nice things about her life that come with religion and she likes having that belief system of where everything came from and when, I don’t know, she sees creation in awe. And I yeah, I can totally see the beauty in it.
[01:07:07] CHRIS: Religion can be a really beautiful thing. It can connect you with people. It can remind you of community. It can, it can, it brings together the people who are your actual neighbors and shares an experience. And then sometimes the church you’re raised in can also systematically cover up the sexual abuse of a whole generation or two of teens in the entire state of Pennsylvania and –
[01:07:31] CALLER: Yeah. I went to Catholic school for preschool to 8th grade so I can relate [laughing]
[01:07:35] CHRIS: Oh so…another lapsed Catholic. Yeah. And you’re like, and I recently, I just watched a movie with Oscar Isaac. Oh. Oh. Is that true, too? That the Catholic Church apparently helped facilitate the Nazis escaping to Argentina and Brazil after World -? Oh, okay. Another great thing, but it’s also really nice to go put a couple of dollars in the basket and know that it’s going to help the actual homeless people in your community.
[01:07:58] CALLER: Yeah, yeah.
[01:07:59] CHRIS: But also, also apparently there’s, apparently we maybe also funneled Nazis to safety. Okay. You know, there’s, you take the good and the bad or you maybe just walk away and keep an arm’s length after a certain point.
[01:08:13] CALLER: Oh. Something that I always wanted to know. Completely unrelated to anything we’ve talked about so far. What’s your problem with dogs?
[01:08:26] CHRIS: Well, now you’re bringing up something really controversial.
[01:08:30] CALLER: [laughing] Has anybody asked you that before? It’s been, I mean, I used to work in a cubicle where I could listen to Beautiful Anonymous all the time. But it’s been a long time since I’ve heard an episode.
[01:08:39] CHRIS: That’s fair. Yeah. People, every time I mention that I’m not a dog person, people lace into me. I’ve had people tweet at me. “I am officially done listening to your show, unsubscribe, you don’t like dogs.” What can I say?
[01:08:50] CALLER: [laughing] I don’t know why, but when I heard that the first time I was offended.
[01:08:54] CHRIS: People flew into a rage.
[01:08:55] CALLER: I don’t know why.
[01:08:56] CHRIS: There will be people –
[01:08:57] CALLER: I don’t know why I need you to like dogs [laughing]. But also, what happened so that you don’t like dogs?
[01:09:03] CHRIS: Listen, there’s people who will have listened to your whole story of, you know, dealing with infidelity and drug addicts and being stalked and having to protect a kid who will be by far more upset that the fact that I don’t love a border collie. No, I’m fine with dogs people! I had cats growing up. I like cats. They take care of themselves. They go and they poop in a box and they cover it up for you and you just get -. Dogs are -. And my best friend growing up had two dogs and they were really fun and I liked playing with them. But when we’re trying to eat, they’re bumping into your legs, they’re trying to jump up and take the food – and that’s fine. They’re dogs. It’s what they do. It just wasn’t for me. It just wasn’t for me. They jump on me. My friend Jamie Miller, growing up had a really, really big dog. And it once, like it was a German shepherd. And it like jumped on a couch and pinned me down. It was scary. What can I say? Not everybody likes them!!
[01:09:55] CALLER: [inaudible] …amazing!
[01:09:57] CHRIS: What?
[01:09:59] CALLER: I would yes, I would love to be pinned down by a German shepherd.
[01:10:03] CHRIS: Listen to what you’re saying. Hey, we got five seconds left. Is this really how we’re ending this?
[01:10:08] CALLER: [laughing] Oh my God! Well, then I would like to thank Harry Nelson and Reverend John DeLore because I never hear anything about them.
[01:10:14] CHRIS: Wow. You really haven’t listened in awhile. It’s Jared O’Connell now. The Reverend John DeLore is doing his own thing. I don’t know if you’re still on the line, but if you are so sincerely, I hope you take care of yourself. I hope you take care of that kid. I hope you get the whole truth. And this stuff is really raw. And it was brave of you to share it. And I think it’s gonna help a lot of people. So thank you for doing so.
[01:10:40] CHRIS: [music transition] Caller, I know I just said it after you hung up, but just in case you’re listening to this part. You are one tough cookie and I applaud you for it. And I hope this, I hope this thing normalizes soon. And you can find the foundation in your life again, one way or the other. And you can get back to moving forward because you’re an incredibly strong person. Thank you for inspiring me. And, so cool of you to call in, let us know what’s going on, and I just really hope everything turns out OK and that you get the whole truth. Thank you so much. Harry Nelson was the captain of the ship today. Jared O’Connell ditched him at the wheel, took the J – just, sprinted out of the room and said, I got better things to do today! Thank you to Jared O’Connell in all sincerity. Thank you, Harry. Thank you to Justin Lindale. Thank you Shellshag. Chrisgeth.com is where you can find out about my road dates. They’re out there. I’d love to meet you on the road. If you like the show, go to Apple podcasts rate, review, subscribe helps when you do. See you next time on Beautiful Anonymous.
[NEXT EPISODE PREVIEW]
[01:11:51] CHRIS: Next week on Beautiful Anonymous: losing 150 pounds, that’s supposed to be nothing but a, a victory, right? Well, our caller tells us the whole story.
[01:12:02] CHRIS: [music transition] Well, what’s going on?
[01:12:03] CALLER: This might be a downer call, unfortunately, or a good one, I guess.
[01:12:06] CHRIS: That’s OK. Every once in a while you go to a comedy festival and you just have a real downer of an experience. It’s totally fine.
[01:12:14] CALLER: [laughing] I have an interesting story. Most of my life, I was super, morbidly obese, but I started losing weight and I lost about 150 pounds in less than a year.
[01:12:26] CHRIS: In less than a year?
[01:12:27] CALLER: On purpose. You know, I didn’t accidentally lose. I worked really hard to lose it. And so I went from really, really big and living a life that way to super athletic and fit and running marathons.
[01:12:44] CHRIS: Marathons. Wow. [crowd applauding] Well, you know, the crowd is applauding your, your newfound dedication to health.
[01:12:53] CHRIS: That’s next time on Beautiful Anonymous.