Close
Premium Podcast Help Contact Dr. Laura Dr. Laura Designs Return to DrLaura.com
Join Family Premium Login Family
Social Issues
05/13/2010
IconI always look for patterns in callers' questions, because I'm interested in what that pattern means in terms of what folks have come to believe...and why.' A persistent thought seems to be that impulse is irresistible.' That means, if you feel like a burger or a cigarette or a roll in the hay with someone you know you shouldn't be with, then you have some kind of addiction, which means a disease, which means out of your control .That's a darn good rationalization...but it ain't true.' The only irresistible impulse is one which hasn't been resisted , and that is most definitely (but not simply) a choice .I say "not simply," because resisting impulses is difficult and sometimes painful.' Generally, such inappropriate behaviors have the purpose of 1) immediate gratification of feelings, and 2) hiding you from other emotionally distressing thoughts and feelings.' That means that, if you resist the impulse to drink, eat, or have a sexual fling in the office stationery closet, you will be left with the anxiety or sadness that resides within.It is clear, therefore, that the emphasis should be on dealing with the not-so-well submerged anxieties and sadness.' For example, a man called recently to say that he is mean to his wife, criticizing anything he sees around the house.' I immediately suggested that he saw the cluttered kitchen counter as a sign his wife didn't love him.' Now, you'd think that was a ridiculous leap, but it was "spot on."' He (after some nagging from me) offered that his mother had not been, well, "motherly" and loving.' To this day, he has his wife do things to prove/make up for the lack of affection and attention he missed as a child.' Did he know he was doing this and why?' Yes for the "doing;" no for the "why."I suggested he go home with a flower in hand and tell his wife that he needed her to hold him.' I told him that's what "his woman" was for.' You can always hire a maid, but you can't hire someone to really love and care about you.' He was treating his wife like his mom, when he really needed her to be a wife with loving kindness.You get love by being open to it, and by being loving in return.' You do not get love by eating that cake, smoking that joint, drinking that beer or overpowering those who care about you.'Resist those impulses.' Yes, it's painful and difficult, both physically and emotionally, but the ultimate reward is the very thing you've been trying to get (just all in the wrong way), and that thing is LOVE. More >>

Tags: AddictionEat Less-Move MoreHealthObesityPersonal ResponsibilitySmokingSocial Issues
PERMALINK | EMAIL | PRINT | RSS  Subscribe
05/13/2010
IconI get calls all the time from young, emotionally hungry young women (girls, actually), who think that an older, often married, man really loves them.' It makes me so sad in my heart to hear these young women denying reality and setting themselves up for hurt.20 year old Sahel Kazemi thought she had it made in the shade, because a celebrity, a former NFL football star, Steve McNair, took her partying in VIP rooms and on vacations for eight months.' She believed him when he got her on his condo bed for sex that he was going to leave his wife of twelve years for her.' He didn't.And then, one day, she saw some other young thing - probably another girl believing she was the one who was special to McNair.' So, one night, when McNair was sitting on his sofa, likely asleep, she shot him twice in the head and twice in the chest.' Then she sat down next to him, positioning herself so that she would fall into his lap, and shot herself (according to FoxNews).'Here was an attractive young girl (she had just turned twenty), a teenager, a high school dropout who had moved with a boyfriend at age 17 to Nashville from Florida.' When she was 9, her mother was murdered, and, born in Iran, she and her family were persecuted for their religious faith.This is a lot of turmoil and chaos and hurt for a young girl, and it is sad that so many family members and family friends tell this upbeat story about her, surprised that she would do such a thing.' She was clearly emotionally tortured and vulnerable, needy, and naive.' Her life began and ended in violence.Men like McNair make me sick.' I am sicker still, reading sycophants talk about his actions on the football field, as though the admiration he earned for running a ball around a field should count for more than the human lives he betrayed.' He had a wife, with whom he had two sons, and two more sons from I don't know where and I don't know by whom.' He was a 36 year old man who had been given great opportunities and huzzahs for his accomplishments. His response was to cater to his childish needs to "do" young women who (without question) would simply adore him.'It is sad that this ended in death for him and a naive and needy girl who believed that without him, there was no purpose in life.'It is sad that, as I speak, older accomplished men in business, politics, clergy, academe, and medicine are doing the exact same thing, in order to fulfill their needs to receive a naive reverence, to feel youthful and important in the reflection of a young woman, or because they feel entitled to spoils because of their celebrity or wealth or power.I warn young girls every day to live a life of integrity and modesty with morals, so they won't be used in such a way.' Sometimes, though, a girl is so damaged that shortcuts seem the only way.This time, it resulted in death seeming the only way. More >>

Tags: AbuseAdulteryInfidelityMarriagePersonal ResponsibilitySocial IssuesViolence
PERMALINK | EMAIL | PRINT | RSS  Subscribe
05/13/2010
IconIt seems that it's very much in the nature of human nature to expect more without having more expected of us.' Because so much energy is being focused on the cost of health care and the proposed programs for universal health insurance, the flip side of the equation is starting to get attention.The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention unveiled a free website application last week called LEANWorks, designed to motivate employers to start "healthy living" and weight loss programs for their employees, because being overweight is a major cause of certain illnesses, and also contributes to missed work days and higher insurance costs.' Of course, representatives of organizations like the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance are up in arms over this.A keystone to the LEANWorks program is the "obesity cost calculator" for companies to estimate how much their obese and overweight employees are costing them in higher insurance rates and missed work days each year.' The ultimate point is to get preventive programs in place.Of course, the "fat advocates" don't want responsibility - just perks.' They are claiming everything from prejudice to discrimination.' In their view, facts are irrelevant.' It's just their "feelings" that count.'It's no secret that obesity is a big risk factor for chronic diseases.' Obesity has accounted for over 25% of the rise in medical costs between 1987 and 2001, according to Dr. Bill Dietz, Director of the Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity and Obesity at the CDC.' While it is also true that people of normal weight have medical issues which result in work day losses and higher insurance costs, most of their conditions are not as controllable as excess body fat.It is the moral responsibility of those who are overweight and obese, of those who smoke, of those who abuse alcohol and various drugs to correct their activities for the greater good of the community which has to take on responsibility for the negative consequences of their behavior, and their lack of self-discipline and commitment to health.If the greater "we" is responsible for taking financial hits in order to cater to the predictable consequences of your actions, then you become accountable to the greater "we," and we cut out the nonsense about discrimination and prejudice against fat.' It isn't healthy, plain and simple.' And now that you think about it, it isn't fair , either. More >>

Tags: Eat Less-Move MoreFamilyFinancesObesityPersonal ResponsibilityRelationshipsRelativesSocial Issues
PERMALINK | EMAIL | PRINT | RSS  Subscribe
Tags: MarriageSocial IssuesValues
PERMALINK | EMAIL | PRINT | RSS  Subscribe
05/13/2010
IconOne of my listeners sent me a story about "Why the American Flag is Folded 13 Times."' This is another one of those emails that get passed around via the Internet, so we checked out the accuracy of the story.' It turns out that it is NOT true that there was originally a specific meaning to each fold and that's why there are 13 folds.' The American flag isn't folded this way because each of the folds has a symbolic meaning; the procedure for folding the flag 13 times was in place long before there was an assigned "meaning" to each fold.' These associations have sprung up over the years, and they have come to mean something to those who participate in the flag folding ceremony, but they are not the reason why a flag is folded 13 times.Nonetheless, I found the "meanings" that have been attributed to each fold very moving, and I'm posting them here as something to contemplate as we display our flags for the Fourth of July: The first fold of our flag is a symbol of life. The second fold is a symbol of our belief in eternal life. The third fold is made in honor and remembrance of the veterans departing our ranks who gave a portion of their lives for the defense of our country to attain peace throughout the world. The fourth fold represents our weaker nature; for as American citizens trusting, it is to Him we turn in times of peace as well as in time of war for His divine guidance. The fifth fold is a tribute to our country, for in the words of Stephen Decatur, 'Our Country, in dealing with other countries may she always be right; but it is still our country, right or wrong.' The sixth fold is for where our hearts lie.' It is with our heart that we pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. The seventh fold is a tribute to our Armed Forces, for it is through the Armed Forces that we protect our country and our flag against all her enemies, whether they be found within or without the boundaries of our republic. The eighth fold is a tribute to the one who entered into the valley of the shadow of death, that we might see the light of day, and to honor mother, for whom it flies on Mother's Day. The ninth fold is a tribute to womanhood; for it has been through their faith, their love, loyalty and devotion that the character of the men and women who have made this country great has been molded. The tenth fold is a tribute to the father, for he, too, has given his sons and daughters for the defense of our country since they were first born. The eleventh fold, in the eyes of a Hebrew citizen represents the lower portion of the seal of King David and King Solomon, and glorifies in their eyes, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The twelfth fold, the in the eyes of a Christian citizen, represents an emblem of eternity and glorifies, in their eyes, God the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit. The thirteenth fold:' when the flag is completely folded, the stars are uppermost reminding us of our nation's motto:' 'In God We Trust.'' After the flag is completely folded and tucked in, it takes on the appearance of a cocked hat, ever reminding us of the soldiers who served under General George Washington, and the Sailors and Marines who served under Captain John Paul Jones, who were followed by their comrades and shipmates in the Armed Forces of the United States, preserving for us the rights, privileges and freedoms we enjoy today. The next time you see a flag ceremony honoring someone that has served our country, either in the Armed Forces or in our civilian services such as the police force or Fire Department, keep in mind all the important reasons behind each and every movement.' They have paid the ultimate sacrifice for all of us by honoring our flag and our country. More >>

Tags: MilitarySocial IssuesValues
PERMALINK | EMAIL | PRINT | RSS  Subscribe
05/13/2010

Tags: Quote of the WeekRegarding Dr. LauraSocial IssuesValues
PERMALINK | EMAIL | PRINT | RSS  Subscribe
Tags: AttitudeCommitmentDatingDisappointmentEducationFamily/Relationships - TeensFriendshipsHealthHopeMarriageMotherhood-FatherhoodPersonal ResponsibilityPregnancyPurposeSocial IssuesTeens
PERMALINK | EMAIL | PRINT | RSS  Subscribe
Tags: CharitySocial IssuesValues
PERMALINK | EMAIL | PRINT | RSS  Subscribe
Tags: MarriageSexSexualitySocial IssuesValues
PERMALINK | EMAIL | PRINT | RSS  Subscribe
05/13/2010
IconThis Saturday is Armed Forces Day, and this month is Military Appreciation Month .' When I got this email, I knew this was the week to share it with all of you: Dr. Laura:My 15 year old son belongs to the Civil Air Patrol, which is an offshoot of the Air Force.' We had been talking recently about what it means for him to be in the military, the good, the bad, and the sometimes ugly that goes with it.' I just received this email from one of our deployed members that sums up what it means to be a warrior, and thought I would share it with you. From one warrior-raising mom to another,Judi And here's the email she got: A few of you have expressed your thanks and feelings regarding my deployment.' Of course, it's been a resounding "don't go!"' But I would like you to take the time and ask:' what would happen if I didn't go? The simple answer is that someone else would go in my place.' This isn't an acceptable alternative for me.' How could I expect someone else to go in harm's way in my place? Another answer, one I believe more important, is this:' who would protect my fellow brothers and sisters in arms while they do their jobs?' Six years ago, I put up my right hand and swore an oath to defend my country.' And that country includes every airman, sailor, soldier and Marine.' The job that Oscar [his bomb-sniffing dog] and I have is just that:' protecting my brothers and sisters so they might return safely. When I returned from my last deployment a year ago, I had the honor of flying with an Angel Flight.' For those of you who don't know, an Angel Flight is the designation for an aircraft carrying our fallen service members.' It was unfortunate for them to return in such a state.' And I knew, in the back of my mind, that if more people like me (and Oscar) were there, that just maybe, these service members would not have to return like this. The oath that I took is different from the oath you take as a CAP cadet, in that many others stake their lives in the trust that I will keep my promise.' Sticking to that promise is important to me.' But sticking to your promise is just as important.' It shows how you, as an individual, value your own promise to yourself, your community, state and nation. I know what my oath means:' that I am prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice if need be to protect my fellow service members and Americans.' I'd like you to take the time to reflect on YOUR promise.' What does your promise mean to YOU?' Can YOU count on your own promise?' Can OTHERS count on it? Thank you everyone for the gifts, support, and thanks you have given me.' Once I arrive in Iraq and get my mailing address, I'll forward it on.' Remember, the best gift is "Chocolate Monkey" or "Swiss" trail mix from Archer Farms, available at Target. Take care, and stay safe.' I'll see you at the end of my deployment.' I expect to see all of you promoted to Cadet 2nd Lieutenant by my return.' Martinez, give me five push-ups. Phillip K.SSgt, USAF More >>

Tags: MilitarySocial IssuesValuesWar
PERMALINK | EMAIL | PRINT | RSS  Subscribe