Eps 341: Exploring our Intimate Partnerships with Marriage Helper Kimberly Holmes

Episode 341

My guest today is Kimberly Holmes. 

Kimberly and Casey talk about their family backgrounds and what common challenges long-term, committed couples are facing.  They discuss couples therapy and intentionally supporting both spouses & a safe environment during Marriage Helpers workshops.  Casey and Kimberly talk similarities and differences between problem solving, using curiosity questions, and compromising with a teen versus with a spouse.  Kimberly shares advice on how to listen to and take feedback from a partner and tips on how parents can find common ground when it comes to their teens.  Casey and Kimberly wrap up digging into the importance of consistency, relationships ending, and the challenges of co-parenting. 

Kimberly has applied her master’s degree in psychology for over 10 years, acting as the CEO of Marriage Helper & CEO and Creator of PIES University, being a wife and mother herself, and researching the ways that attraction affects people personally and the relationships that they hold dear.  Her videos, podcasts, and following reach over 200,000 people a month who are making changes and becoming the best that they can be.  She is currently working on her Ph.D. in psychology.

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Takeaways from the show

  • How do the teen years affect your partnership with your spouse? 
  • Pushing or pulling out of a marriage
  • How do you show up in your relationship?
  • Genuinely asking your spouse questions with curiosity 
  • Receiving feedback from a spouse without getting defensive 
  • Finding common ground, empathy, & being teammates with your spouse 
  • Do parents need to have the same parenting style? 
  • Can every marriage be saved? When is it time to call it quits? 
  • Having peace in your decisions  
  • Co-parenting challenges, disappointments, & tips

What does joyful courage mean to you 

Joyful courage means being able to move forward even if I’m scared, even if I’m nervous, even if I have anxiety.  It means being able to do so knowing I’m surrounded by people who love me and even if I fall or fail, my self-worth isn’t caught up in whatever that thing is.  My worth is given to me by the people I love and the life that I have.




Kimberly’s Marriage Helper Website 

Marriage Helper How To Get Your Spouse Back Free Mini-Course

Kimberly’s Podcast: Relationship Radio 

Kimberly’s Podcast: It Starts with Attraction 

Kimberly’s Podcast: Marriage Quick Tips- Affairs, Communication, Avoiding Divorce, and Saving Your Marriage

Talking with Teens about S-E-X Workshop  

Troomi,  use “joyfulcourage” and get $50 off your first phone


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Joyful Courage Episode - 10.17 - Kimberly Holmes
Thu, Oct 13, 2022 10:26AM • 44:34
parenting, marriage, people, spouse, relationship, kimberly, hear, person, kids, listening, question, couple, podcast, life, dad, divorce, conversation, circle, teen years, teens
Amy Lang, Kimberly Holmes, Casey O'Roarty

Casey O'Roarty 00:05
Hello, hello my friends. Welcome back to Joyful Courage, a conscious parenting podcast, where we tease apart the challenges and nuances of parenting through the adolescent years. I am your host, Casey over 40, positive discipline trainer, parent coach and adolescent lead at Sproutable, where we celebrate not only the growth of children, but also the journey and evolution that we all get to go through as parents. This is a place where we keep our real, real stories real parenting, the teen years are real messy, and there aren't many right answers. But the more we trust ourselves, and trust our teens, the better the outcomes can be. The Parenting we talked about over here is relationship centered, you won't find a lot of talk about punishment, consequences or rewards. What you will hear is a lot of encouragement about connection, curiosity and life skill development. Our teens are on their own journey. And while we get to walk next to them for a bit, we don't get to walk for them. Their work is to learn from the tension of their life. Our work is to support them and love them along the way. I'm so glad you're here. Enjoy the show.

Casey O'Roarty 01:30
Hey, everybody, I am so excited to introduce my guest today, Kimberly beam Holmes has her master's degree in psychology and for over the last 10 years has been the acting CEO of marriage helper, and CEO and creator of pies University, being a wife and mother herself and researching the ways that attraction affects people personally, and the relationships that they hold dear her videos, podcasts and following reach over 200,000 people a month, who are making changes and becoming the best they can be. She is currently working on her PhD in psychology. And I'm really excited to talk to her today. Hi, Kimberly, welcome to the podcast.

Kimberly Holmes 02:13
Thank you so much for having me, Casey, I'm thrilled to be speaking with you.

Casey O'Roarty 02:18
So listeners, I was telling Kimberly, as she came on that I feel like I've already spent most of the day with her today, because I've put away a few of her podcasts this morning and prepping for the show. I'm really excited to talk about our partner relationships with you today. Kimberly, I think there's a lot of conversation about how the early years of parenting can be hard on a couple. But let's talk about how the teen years can also find us at odds with our partner. And it's come up in some of my community work and my client work. So I'm excited to go there. But before we do, tell us a little bit more about your story of doing what you do.

Kimberly Holmes 03:04
Yeah, the best way to understand my story and how I got involved with marriage helper is to really understand how marriage helper even started. So it was back in the 1980s before marriage helper was ever around that our founder, Dr. Joe beam, the long story short of it. He was very successful speaker and he was so successful. His speaking schedule was booked five years out.

Casey O'Roarty 03:28
Oh, man goals, Speaker goal.

Kimberly Holmes 03:32
Yeah, well, the next part, though, is that he ended up having an affair divorcing his wife, leaving his two kids who were seven and 12 at the time, and they were divorced for three years. And he went from being this incredibly successful man to being an alcoholic drug addict, homeless, sleeping in the back of his car, bankrupt, wow. And turned into a person he didn't even know anymore. And after those three years of him experiencing that, he realized I want my family back, I've done the wrong thing. I want to try and restore this. And so he went back to his ex wife and asked if she would take them back. And everyone in her life told her not to do it. But she said I knew in my heart that Joe was a good man who had done several bad things. But we deserved to give this marriage a second chance. So they remarried, almost divorced again, because they hadn't actually fixed the problems from the first marriage, but they were committed this time to fixing it. And so they did. They learned how to fall back in love with each other. And as a celebration of that second marriage, they decided to have a third daughter who is me. So I tell everyone I owe my life to to people who were willing to fight to make it work. Otherwise, I wouldn't be here and then 10 or 12 years after they remarry. to my dad, once again, had gotten back into speaking and things, but really felt unfulfilled. And so in 1999, he and my mom said, What can we do to help couples and families not have to experience the pain that we did? And that was the origination of marriage helper.

Casey O'Roarty 05:18
Oh, man. So what I love about that story is it's such an example of how, like, what unfolds in our lives, including the choices that we make, and the decisions we make, can move us in the direction of such a powerful purpose. And I see that and that story for your parents. And I love that they used that to now be in the work of supporting others. And now you're in the work too.

Kimberly Holmes 05:45
Yeah, absolutely. It's very powerful. And what's even more amazing is because of their testimony of their story of what they went through, we attract people who are that hopeless, who hear that and think maybe I can do this too. And so now we have 1000s of stories that are like that of other people that this has just trickled into their lives and change their families for forever. So it's amazing

Casey O'Roarty 06:13
work. Well, I come from a family of divorce. So my parents split, when I was five, my little brother was three, we call ourselves the OGs. Were the original kids of the family. My mom remarried when I was seven and had my sister, my dad remarried when I was 10. And they eventually had my other sister and my littlest brother came my first year of college. So I'm the oldest of five in this kind of wild, puzzled family. And it was just my normal, right, it was just my normal, the original parents did not do a great job of being in relationship with each other. However, my dad was super rigorous around his time with us, which, you know, late 70s, early 80s was every other weekend, two weeks in the summer, but he came to all of our things. So even though, I mean, I think about my dad, I was such a little shout out to my dad's so many times when he would show up to things and he never stopped. So shout out to my dad. Interestingly, my husband, his family of origin, has a really similar story with divorces and remarriage is we've been together he and I for 27 years and married for 23 in August, and Kimberly, it is a lot of freakin work.

Kimberly Holmes 07:30
Yes, that's what they don't tell you at the altar.

Casey O'Roarty 07:33
Oh, my God, it is not the glory days. We called it the Summer of Love the summer of 1995. Man, we just couldn't get it up with each other. You couldn't keep our hands off of each other. That is not how it looks here in 2022. What would you say are some of the biggest challenges and obstacles that the couples that like you said that you're attracting? Yeah, what are they facing?

Kimberly Holmes 07:57
Yeah, the biggest thing is there's one spouse that wants out of the marriage, for whatever reason. And in marriage helper, we teach that it's typically one of one of two things overall. So people are typically either pushed out of a marriage or pulled out of a marriage. So they could be pushed out of a marriage because of the way that their spouse is treating them. Because of demands at home stress that's too much at home not getting help with things not being listened to a lot of the things that we hear from women in particular is I've been telling my husband for years, that I'm unhappy that he's not listening to me that we need more intimacy, and he never listened. And I finally just got to the point where I was done. And because of his lack of interaction, it pushed me out of a marriage. So there's things like that. But then there's also the poll, which could be affairs, very common, especially the people that we work with. And if you look at the stats, anywhere from 30, to 50% of marriages will be affected by an affair. So people could be pulled by that or pulled by wanting to be a part of a different lifestyle than what they have now. Or sometimes they're pulled away by just wanting to have peace. They're sick of all the fighting, they're sick of all the rigmarole going on, you can't even have a decent conversation, and they are just pulled away from that. So that's typically what we see. So the people who are coming to us are the ones who are at this point saying, I want to say that, and maybe they're the ones who realize I've done everything wrong. And now I really want to change so that I can bring my spouse back or they're the ones saying, I don't know what I did, but they're gone. And I want to try and bring them back whether they're gone physically or emotionally. So that's what we deal with.

Casey O'Roarty 09:43
Got it. And I just want to acknowledge this before we go on. I know that my listeners, there's a variety of family systems, you know, amongst the joyful College community, and I know there's people in long term partnerships that you know, don't identify as married but definitely identify as committed. I know that we have Same sex couples in the community. So everyone who's listening just know, I'm making an assumption by saying what we're talking about today applies to really any long term committed relationship. And I think all of this stuff can I've seen, I mean, COVID, I've seen so many of my friends, relationships, and in the last couple of years, and on one hand, it breaks my heart. And there's a grief for the vision that they had and wanted. But on the other hand, I'm also noticing that I have a lot of friends who were not good pickers. Hmm. You know, and I'm really curious about that, too. But I'm gonna ask you that later. So it's interesting to think about that. So there's the push, and there's the pull. And then there's the one person inside of the relationship who's saying, No, I want to, there's a willingness to do the work. And when I was listening to your, a couple weeks ago, I think it was a show that you were talking about how to get our partners to understand us, and you had some great tips and tools about that. But one thing that I loved, so your co host is your dad. Yeah. Yeah. I love that. One thing that he said when he was talking about the workshops you all do, is the intention that you all put into making sure that the partner who might not have been the one that signed the couple up for the workshop, feels supported and seen and not ganged up on? Absolutely. It's key to what we do. Yeah. And I love that, because, you know, Ben and I have done couples counseling. And it's funny, even though I know how it's gonna be, I still am like, okay, good, somebody else is going to say it in a way that like, he will hear it, and it will be as I want it to be. And Kimberly, we have a great counselor because she is like, so Casey. Yeah, here's where you can do some work. Here's where you can do some letting go. Here's, you know, an M, part of me is like, hey, Connie, Fu. I love it. But also, like, I know, because of the work I do, and my own personal growth, like, the only thing that I really have any control of is how I show up in my relationship, right? And that there is influence and how I show up. And so what are some things that you do in your workshops to support whichever one because I think that resistance is really real for people? Because I know, for me, I feel like, I'm always doing the work. Like I'm living and breathing the work. And sometimes I'm just tired of it and ready for him to step in and get involved.

Kimberly Holmes 12:42
Right? Do the work himself? Yeah. So from the get go, I mean, from the minute a couple walks in, if it's in person, if it's online, we try and mimic it as much as we can. But there's never a different way that we treat either spouse that shows up. And we don't know like our team doesn't necessarily read the background information, because we want to be able to treat both of them believing for their marriage and on equal ground. And then going into it like you can tell, you can definitely tell on screen or in person, the people who aren't the ones that want to be there. But our team pushes through we smile, we greet that person, we try and be a little bit more intentional about just saying, Hey, where are you from? You know, how long did it take to get here? Did you enjoy your you know, the hotel you're staying in, or whatever it is just to break up and start to build rapport, it's so important, because that person needs to start feeling like you're not going to judge them for whoever they are. But the key to it is that we do not allow anyone in our workshop to say anything negative about their spouse, at any point, they can say anything about themselves. And they can say anything positive about their spouse, that they cannot say anything negative, and we shut it down if they do. So we make it a safe environment. We don't let you know some of the times in counseling one of the issues, and I understood it because I did my training and marriage and family therapy, but you get a spouse who goes off on a tangent and maybe her husband is sitting right there next to her listening. And the counselor many times will let that person vent, maybe even try and dig into why those feelings are that way. We don't do any of that. We say let's focus on the future. Let's remember the good things of the past. I'm not saying that we don't cover and deal with the issues that are there we do. But we do it in a way where you're not beating each other up. You're not throwing another person under the bus and you're not sharing anything negative with your spouse. And we have found that to be extremely effective, and being able for that spouse to feel safe. So then both spouses feel safe. And then over time of the three days, that reluctant spouse, they begin to see other people open up they begin to see that everyone is dealing with issues like we are Maybe we're not alone. And all of that put together allows for change to happen in the marriage in both spouses, but especially the one who didn't want to be there at all.

Casey O'Roarty 15:10
Yeah, I love that. It reminds me of the power of being in a parenting class, you know, I lead a lot of parenting classes. And when we start off by listing the challenges that are currently alive in the house with the kids, everybody's kind of looking around, like, oh, I don't live in my own private freak show, like, this is what adolescence looks like. Yeah, it's really, really powerful. So I'm hearing you say in that group, like there's a nurturing of willingness there, right? I'm so interested in this concept of willingness. And when I'm working with parents, one of the questions I encourage them to ask their teens because typically, that's the relationship we're focusing on who might be struggling, getting clear about well, what is it that you want? So like a child who's like, from the parents perspective? isn't putting effort into school? You know, what do you want? Do you want to move into the next grade with everyone else? Is graduation important to you? And then following with once you figure that out, right, from a very neutral, neutral, non attached plays, what do you think it'll take to get there, moving that energetic responsibility over to our teen, and encouraging them to see past the power struggle, and into their own experience? And it actually came up recently, on a call I was on with some moms around asking partners, well, how do you want this to look? What do you want? How do you want this partnership to feel? And what do you think we need to do to get there? What do you think about those questions as the willing partner who wants to engage in the conversation? What do you think about that as an opening?

Kimberly Holmes 16:48
Yeah, it depends on the state of the relationship, at the time of the question. So in the situations we work with, where there's one spouse who wants out, they're totally disengaged, that kind of scenario, we wouldn't necessarily encourage our clients to start with that question. Because they're not willing. We know they're not willing, right? No, but

Casey O'Roarty 17:07
before we get there, like when it's just the tension exists, and we're in this rut, and where, you know, the willing parent, or the willing partner who's just feeling like, I can't, this isn't how I want it to be. Yeah. And it can't I mean, it can't be how they want it to be, how does it feel in that scenario,

Kimberly Holmes 17:25
it is so wise to instead of assuming what another person wants to ask them, what is it and to not do it with a leading question or to do it to only hear what you want to hear or to beat them up for what they say that you don't want to hear. But when you really approach it with that curiosity, and your tone mimics that your body language mimics that so that they trust that the intention that is such a powerful question, and then you start to hear each other, you start listening to them, hearing them, adding that in, like finding compromise compromise from that is so key. I think where people get stuck, though, is they will ask these questions like, What do you want our parenting life to look like? How do you want to parent our kids? Whatever those questions might be, you would know better how to ask them than me. But they typically start and enter that question with I already have my plan. And I just want to tell you my plan. Yeah. Right. And that doesn't work. Right?

Casey O'Roarty 18:28
It's a disrespectful, it's, it's a formula. Same thing with our kids, like, you know, I have a high schooler and I say, Well, what do you want? Well, I want to graduate. Well, do you want to go to college? I want to go to college. Okay. Do you have a list of the ones that you're interested in? Yeah. Let's take a look at how you're doing and what their requirements are. And, you know, and okay, well, I don't want to go to those schools, I have to be willing in this conversation, to stand next to my child's right and look at the situation and be in acceptance of what it is that he wants to do. And then when I put that in the context of my husband, like, I love what you said about being, you didn't say neutral, but I would use the word neutral around what their response is like, Well, what do you want? I want you to stop being such a bitch. That's great feedback, right? And that's where I again, get to be in my personal growth and willing to be like, Okay, this is feedback versus Well, I wouldn't be such a bitch if I weren't such a dick. Or, you know, like, and then all of a sudden the conversation is over. Right? And we're right back to where we were. How do you support couples in like being inside of the feedback from each other in a way that they can receive it and hear it, and their defenses can be softened? I guess?

Kimberly Holmes 19:49
My Wow. Yeah, that's a great question. A lot of it goes to when people understand when you can get a spouse to understand The concept of that like, I feel like this sounds so simple that I kind of am like, Is this even the right answer? But once you kind of explain to someone like, listen, people sometimes say things to you, and they don't filter it, and it's not going to be easy to hear, but you don't have to react to that. You can take what is true, and leave what is not. You get to choose how to react. One of my pet peeves is when people say, well, they made me do this, because no one makes you do anything. You choose how to react based on what they did. And I believe it takes practice, it takes practice of being able to hear someone say something to you, you don't want to hear a feedback that was difficult taking some deep breaths. And maybe at that point, just smiling and saying thank you for your feedback. I need time to process this. Like you don't have to finish the conversation in that moment. So there's a bunch of tools that can really help people do that. But some of those tools people might shove off and say like, Oh, that's so simple. But those things like taking deep breaths, disconnecting from the conversation, circling back to it at a later time, all of that is helpful and being able to take that feedback. But another thing I would say I wanted to circle back to it when we're talking about compromise. And you know, if you're asking your spouse, how do you want things to be? What would you picture it to be like? Are you familiar with Gottman circle method?

Casey O'Roarty 21:27
I should be because our therapist is a Gottman therapist remind me of what the Gottman circle method is

Kimberly Holmes 21:32
super simple. So take parenting as an example parenting technique, and have each person identify there's two circles, if there's one circle in the middle, and then a big circle on the outside of it, then that middle circle is this is my core need. This is where I'm rigid. This is where I'm inflexible. This is my coordinate, but you try and make that inner circle as small as possible. And then there's the circle outside of it that you want to make as big as possible, which is this is where I'm flexible. This is where maybe I have some preferences or things like that. But we can work with this circle. And then once both people have that you start to see where can the circles overlap, and where can we have both people's core needs be met. And the way to do that is also by finding the flexibility between the two. And so when you're both able to go into that conversation, realizing we both want to have our core needs met, and both of us are going to seek to help the other person get our core need met, so I don't have to defend it. As much as I feel like I need to defend it, then that is when real productive conversation and outcomes can come.

Casey O'Roarty 22:42
Yeah. I love that Gottman circle method.

Kimberly Holmes 22:45
Yeah, I think that's the quote unquote, firm. I'm sure it sounds very

Casey O'Roarty 22:49
technical, Kimberly. Sure. It will come up, something will come up. And we can play with that. Oh, I love that.

Amy Lang 23:00
Hey, it's Amy Lang, b, f of KC and the show. Hey, we are super excited, because I'm going to be teaching y'all how to talk with teens about sex. We're kicking off on Tuesday, November 1, and we've got three parts. The first one is what teens need to know a sap. So if you have not started talking to your kids, if you are behind, if you have let's just say slow down, then this will help you. These people can be hard to talk to, especially when it comes to this. So I'm going to be talking about how to get the most engagement with them during your chats. We're going to talk about pleasure. Yeah, sex is supposed to feel good remember, and consent supposed to be something that everyone agrees to do, and a bunch of other things. So please join us. We're starting on Tuesday, November 1, and I'm sure Casey is going to have more things to say about it.

Casey O'Roarty 23:55
Enrollment is now open. You want to grab your spot for this three part series with Amy Lange. I'm so excited that she is offering this up to the community. I asked her I partnered with her on this we've had some questions come up in the Facebook group in the membership around sex and sexuality. No time like the present get down and dirty with it right you can enroll right now at www dot beasts routable.com/sex talks, these browsable.com/sex talks get more information there about each of the parts and claim your spot see you there

Casey O'Roarty 24:43
so you said with parenting you can put you know money you can put intimacy you can put anything and then create this graphic to kind of take a look at where each person's ad and where to find the you can

Kimberly Holmes 24:57
put movie night you You, whatever it is, whatever it is, you're having trouble agreeing on your mindset,

Casey O'Roarty 25:07
well in parenting is a big one, like I said, at the start, you know, I remember when the kids were little and doing I love to read and learn and okay, I know it's gonna be tough, these early years man are intense. And then as my oldest moved into high school, and things got really hard with her, that was the first time we went to couples counseling. And our therapist at that time said, the best thing you can do for your kids as they move through adolescence is one get a life and to work on the relationship you have with each other. Like she said that straight off the bat, which was really helpful. And it's so wild to look back at that time, because in the last four or five years, we've been through the gauntlet of life crisis, including the pandemic, but even aside from the pandemic, yeah, that we've had to learn and grow through and all of which I'm grateful for, none of which I would have asked for. And I'm a positive discipline trainer. So that's my background, it's based in Adlerian theory. I know since you're a psychologist, you probably know what that means. We sent her relationship and life skills and room to grow and learn from mistakes. That's the philosophy. And it also isn't typically how many of us little My clients were parented through their adolescence, but you know, if they come to me and find me, you know, I attract people who value that and want to bring it into their parenting. And one thing that comes up, and I could see how the circle method would be useful. One thing that comes up is when one parent is really excited by this style of parenting and becomes, you know, evangelical about it sometimes and the other parent sees, you know, the behaviorist approach that most of us were raised with around consequences and rewards as the way to go. So, I mean, you kind of just gave us a tool for this. But I would love to know anything else that you can add what parents can do to find common ground, when it comes to how to respond to the roller coaster and the rough terrain, which simply is the teen years.

Kimberly Holmes 27:15
My kids have not gotten to the teen years yet. But I can tell you, I'm

Casey O'Roarty 27:18
here for you.

Kimberly Holmes 27:20
Oh, my gosh, actually, I was a very well behaved teenager, but I was just very sassy. So. So I feel for my parents. But yeah, another thing that is always really interesting is typically when someone is passionate about something, and especially parenting, if they're passionate about something, it's typically because of a story from their past. So there's something that they're relating to, or something that they're wanting to maybe mimic of a way that they were raised, that they believe for a certain reason is the right way. Or maybe, maybe not as consciously, but maybe more subconsciously, it's just what comes out when they're angry or irritated because it's what was shown to them. Yeah, yeah. But it's always fascinating when you start to get your spouse to open up about stories, like, tell me about your childhood. Tell me about what you loved, that you would do with your parents? Or what would really frustrate you? Or how do you want to be a parent based on those experiences you had, from your childhood, those can kind of sound like questions that a therapist might ask you. But if you ask them in the right way, very conversational loving, like actually being interested, you will begin to learn a lot about why your spouse feels so strongly in the way that they do. That may not necessarily get you, you know, for them to buy into your ways immediately. But if you can begin seeing where they're coming from, a couple of things happen. The first is empathy. And that can at least get you or you know, I'll even talk about it in the sense of me, if this was me and Rob, then it would at least be able to get me to calm down enough to have some compassion for my husband and empathy with him and not see him as my enemy. And that's key, I need to be able to see Rob as being on my team, and that I'm on his team. And when we begin to see ourselves as teammates, that's when we want to work together. But he's not going to want to work together with me, if I'm constantly fighting him or against him or disrespecting him, or trying to talk over him or going behind his back and parenting in ways that, you know, if he said something to the kids, like do it this way. And then I come back around and I'm like, actually no, do it my way. That's not going to work, especially for the kids. Like they need to see consistency in the parents. And so that's one tip, use those stories, gained some empathy, and then it also helps you to understand, okay, how can I talk to them in a way they can hear me and understand me now that I understand where they're coming from? Yeah, and

Casey O'Roarty 29:54
you use the word consistency. And I'm really interested in this because I think there's this idea I know that there's an idea that comes up for parents where the belief that both parents need to have the same parenting style. I don't think that's true. I think that if the couple can problem solve and work together and respect each other and reflect, I think that kids understand like, hey, Dad's more easygoing, mom's more rigid, that might not be my house, or maybe it is. Our mom's more easygoing, Dad's more like they learn who we are, how our personalities are. And as a psychologist, do you think that that's okay? If you've ever thought

Kimberly Holmes 30:37
about it until just now, I think this is a fascinating question, because I've never thought about it. But it's true. I mean, so growing up, my parents had different parenting styles. Well, actually, they probably had similar parenting style, but my mother never followed through the delivery.

Kimberly Holmes 30:54
The delivery was always whatever to my dad. But you know what? They were consistent in showing they loved me. Yeah. And that I believe, made all the difference. You know, whether they would handle my discipline differently, which they totally did. I was way more scared of what my dad, when I got to be a teenager, my dad would make me pick my own punishment. That was the worst.

Casey O'Roarty 31:18
I just got grounded for like, months was awful.

Kimberly Holmes 31:21
Oh, my gosh, well, I think I punished myself worse than what they would have. Because I'm like, I have to make it equal to the crime or whatever it was. I lost my phone for a lot, a lot of times, but oh,

Casey O'Roarty 31:33
you sweet girl. You must be very young. We were so far from phones as teenagers. Well, that's not true. Maybe it was the phone in your room?

Kimberly Holmes 31:42
Because I had a phone in my room. I did have a phone in my room. Yeah.

Casey O'Roarty 31:45
Did you have your own line? Yes, I did. That's crazy to think, well, not necessarily, because now they all have their own, you know, line. But anyway.

Kimberly Holmes 31:55
So I would agree, I would agree that, yeah, the parents can be different, but they should be consistent in the love of the child.

Casey O'Roarty 32:02
And one thing I heard you say on a podcast that you did with your dad about the statistics around kids of divorce, which was pretty darn mind blowing, one of the things that you said is household with conflict doesn't have to be a terrible thing. Right. And I love this because our kids learn problem solving compromise, you know, mutual respect, by watching the relationship of their parents, or the relationship that, you know, if it's a single parent household, the relationships that that parent has with the other people in their lives, I would think that a household with no conflict, or it's hidden behind closed doors is not actually ideal for kids. Right? You know, and I'm thinking about a couple of girlfriends of mine, sometimes leaving a partnership is moving towards survival. And so what are some indicators? I don't know if you can really answer this question. But I also want to know, because I'm sure people are listening, who are like, you know, what? Reconciliation, figuring it out? This all sounds good. And it's just not in the cards for us. You know, what are those indications that it is time for a partnership to come to an end as far as an end to living and being together in space?

Kimberly Holmes 33:17
So I will say at first, that one of the stances that marriage helper has is we do believe that any marriage can be saved, that doesn't necessarily mean that every marriage will be saved. And one of the main things so if you're looking at is it time to divorce? Is it time to move on? We would never tell you when that is because we believe that is a decision every person should make for themselves, because they're the only person that will experience the effects of it. But you need to get to safety. If you are in any kind of physical or emotional abusive circumstances, you need to get your kids to safety. You need to get to safety. Number one. Absolutely. And then how do you know if a marriage is salvageable? Yeah. So I recommend that you work to try and save it. And just because your spouse isn't interested, necessarily right now, or maybe even if they're done, they want a divorce. I still believe that there's positive things you can do to work on yourself to do your best to work on the marriage so that you will know at the end of this I did everything I could. And I have no regrets about that. We've seen so many couples or so many people, the individuals that we get to work with who said you know what, I did all of these things, and it didn't work for my marriage, but I have hope for my future. I know that I have the tools I need to have healthy relationships with my kids now to have a healthy future relationship. I have peace about the closure of this relationship. And I think that is a key for people. They need to have peace. If you're at peace about the fact that it's your decision and you have decided that it is time for you to move on, for whatever circumstance there is, then that's a good indicator for you to have peace. But if you don't have peace, if there's still a part of you questioning or wondering or wishing or thinking, then work on it work on you work on doing what you can to hopefully try and bring your spouse back. But at the end of the day, you could do everything perfectly, and they can still choose to leave. And that's not because you aren't good enough. So it's a

Casey O'Roarty 35:28
balanced, that's an important statement, everyone just hit that little rewind, 10 second button and listen to Kimberly say that as well, because I think we take so much ownership, too much ownership, whether it's you know about our partnerships, or because I say the same thing about parenting, like, you can do all the quote, right things and show up, you know, as a grounded, centered attuned parent, and your kids are still moving out into the world and making decisions and choices as they do. And so the messiness is not an indication that you're unworthy or not enough or not doing the right things all the time. I do think we influence and we are part of a dynamic, but yes, that was really powerful. That's really powerful. Oh, my gosh, I can't believe how fast time has gone by, I want to know, I mean, I want to talk about narcissism. I want everything I want to talk about. Oh, I know. So I do have a lot of people in my community that are co parenting, and meaning their child's other parent doesn't live with them. And that relationship can be, you know, either healthy or unhealthy. Yeah. What advice do you have for someone who's co parenting, and really discouraged, by the way that their CO parent partner is showing up for their kids or not showing up,

Kimberly Holmes 36:49
I've never had to be a co parent. And I mean, Rob and I parent together, we're not in a situation where we're separate. And so it is hard, it is hard, I see that it's hard from the people that I know from my friends that have done it, and listening to my mom talk about what it was like when her and my dad were divorced. So like Grace to You, right? Because it is not an easy situation to be in. One of the worst things that can happen for a child is for their parents to be separate, and continue to fight all the time. And so what I would encourage is that, if that's your situation, where you're not on the same page, and there is a lot of fighting, and you just can't stand them and the decisions that they make, I understand your kids don't need to bear the weight of that, because of many reasons. Number one, there's part of that that they're going to take on themselves of is this somehow my fault? Or since they are my dad? Or they are my mom? Am I like that? Is mom mad at me? Or Is dad mad at me, and the kid doesn't want to be in should not be caught in the middle of it to where they feel like they have to keep secrets from the other because Well, mom just said all these terrible things about dads should I tell them Should I not. And they start to not feel safe. The kids need to just have a safe place. Whether it's at mom's house, or dad's house, or whoever's house, they need to know that they are loved, and that they are not the cause of anything happening between the two parents. And so I would encourage people to keep that in the front of their mind. Don't talk bad about the other parent in front of your kids. This can be hard, because if one doesn't show up when they're supposed to, it's like what do I tell my kid, you tell them that you're there for them. And you ask them how they're feeling. And you listen, it's not your job to make excuses for the other parent, it's not your job to be their PR person. But it is your job to love the child and to try and keep the parenting relationship as amicable as you can.

Casey O'Roarty 38:51
Thank you for that. Kimberly, you are so useful. You're just such a useful wealth of information and knowledge. I definitely feel like a part two needs to happen because I have more questions. And you know, I think about parenting as this. I was just saying recently, how the parenting journey is a personal growth and development workshop that you don't realize that you've bought a ticket to, right. It's like, Oh, if you're paying attention, right, if you're willing to look at it like that, but I also think, you know, even for people that don't choose into the parenting journey or aren't on the parenting journey, partnerships are also a place that are so ripe for personal growth and development. And I'm really hearing you over and over, you know, looking at ourselves and growing ourselves and taking care of ourselves is such a powerful piece to tending to the relationships in our lives. So absolutely. Thank you so much for that. That's it. There it is Mike drop, Michael so good. Anything else that you want to share with the listeners before we wrap up? Going off

Kimberly Holmes 39:55
what you just said, Casey? I mean that it really is true even when you look at the real Search, which is really cool to be able to see that when a person works on their own personal development, their own self esteem, their own self competence, it has positive correlational impacts on their relationships that they have. And so I encourage you to not feel guilty for taking time to do this transformative work to do this personal development work to do some self care, because it is what will allow you to show up well, for the people in your life who need you.

Casey O'Roarty 40:30
Yeah, you can either intentionally do personal growth and development or because you're growing and developing regardless. So you might as well be intentional

Kimberly Holmes 40:39
about it right? You might as well grow the right way.

Casey O'Roarty 40:43
Might as well not be in reaction to everything that's happened. Since my last question, I always end my interviews with Kimberly, what does joyful courage mean to you?

Kimberly Holmes 40:52
Joyful courage means being able to move forward, even if I'm scared, even if I'm nervous, even if I have anxiety, which I have a lot of anxiety, I've had anxiety since I was six, but being able to do so knowing I'm supported by people that love me, and even if I fall, or even if I fail, my self worth isn't caught up in whatever that thing is, my worth is given to me by the people I love and the life that I have. I love that.

Casey O'Roarty 41:21
Where can people find you and follow? Talk about yourself?

Kimberly Holmes 41:25
Marriage helper.com We have a ton of articles, videos, tons of videos on YouTube as well. We also have a free mini course on how to get your spouse back. If that is the situation that any of you listeners are in, then you just go to marriage helper.com. There's a tab right at the top that says free course. And you can get that immediately.

Casey O'Roarty 41:46
And you have a podcast.

Kimberly Holmes 41:48
I do i Yeah. Come on. We have three podcasts. But we have relationship radio, which is all about marriage and relationships. We talked about parenting some but it really is more of a marriage relationship podcast than I have my podcast, which Casey has been on and loved that interview with her. It's called it starts with attraction, which is all about becoming your best self. And then we have a quick tips podcast, which is just shorter marriage tips that you can find wherever you listen to podcasts.

Casey O'Roarty 42:19
And I just realized I forgot to ask you about the four stages of love. So we're definitely going to bring you back. Yeah,

Kimberly Holmes 42:24
that's really I know it was a whole conversation.

Casey O'Roarty 42:29
Okay, teaser everyone. Kimberly's gonna come back and talk to us about the four stages of love. I'm so excited. Thank you so much for spending time with me today. This was so great.

Kimberly Holmes 42:39
Anytime Casey, thank you so much for having me.

Casey O'Roarty 42:50
Yay. All right. Thank you again for listening in to a another show. Please check the show notes for any links mentioned in this episode. If you liked what you heard today, we do me a favor and share it. Screenshot the show plastered all over your socials so that other parents know that we are creating value over here for them. If you really want to earn a gold star, head to Apple podcasts and leave us a review. This does so much for the show for the exposure. It's a great way to give back. Thank you to my team at Sprout double for all your support. Alana Juliet, I love you so much. Thank you to Chris Mann and the team at pod shaper for keeping the show sounding so good. And you listener, thank you for continuing to show up. This is hard work that we're doing. I encourage you in this moment. In this moment to gather let's take a deep breath in. And follow that into your body. Hold it for a moment, exhale. And with that exhale, release the tension. And I invite you to trust, trust that everything is going to be okay. I'm so happy to support you. So glad to have spent time with you today. I'll see you next week.

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