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Where Should We Begin? with Esther Perel
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Where Should We Begin? with Esther Perel

Author: Esther Perel Global Media & Gimlet

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Listen to the incomparable therapist Esther Perel counsel real couples as they reveal the most intimate, personal, and complicated details of the conflicts that have brought them to her door. This season, she takes on open marriage, racism inside an extended family, coming out in a religious home, and chronic infidelity, among other delicate dynamics. Esther creates a space for us to hear our own lives and struggles articulated in the stories of others. So....where should we begin?

36 Episodes
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They grew up with traumatic backgrounds, met in college and immigrated to the U.S. together. They've built stability and security, and now one of them longs for more freedom. Programming note: This conversation was recorded before the COVID-19 lockdown.
The Chronic Philanderer

The Chronic Philanderer

2020-07-1644:468

He's been cheating on her for years, and she's had enough. Now she wants to know: is he in or is he out? Programming note: This conversation was recorded before the COVID-19 lockdown.
Four years in, she can't admit she's attracted to her girlfriend, and her family still doesn't know. Programming note: This conversation was recorded before the COVID-19 lockdown.
They met as religious teenagers and married as virgins. It's the age old story — once you're allowed to be intimate, you no longer want to be. Deciding to open the marriage has brought about huge changes in their sex life, and ruptures in their emotional one. Programming note: This conversation was recorded before the COVID-19 lockdown.
Season Four Trailer

Season Four Trailer

2020-06-1852:132

A new season of Where Should We Begin? With Esther Perel.
Last summer they left everything they'd built in Seattle for a chance at a very different life. He took a dream turn to expand his company and be closer to home; she gave up her nursing job to manage their girls and explore new horizons abroad. COVID-19 hits as they watch the fate of other countries, knowing if it reaches Nigeria with a population of more than 200 million people, it will be devastating. They've been offered a chance to go home, but to what? Leaving Nigeria would mean walking away from everything, but staying could be more than either signed up for. Esther speaks to the couple as Africa begins easing restrictions.
They have three kids and their volatile marriage has fallen apart. She still hopes to rebuild. He can't get out of there fast enough. Two weeks before COVID-19 forced New Yorkers to shelter in place, they filed for divorce. Now they feel trapped. If he goes he risks not seeing his kids for weeks. If he stays he worries it will thwart his plans to finally leave. Esther urges them to think about this present time together and not about what kind of future they will have apart.
For the last year they have lived in separate countries. She took a dream job closer to where she grew up in Germany and he stayed behind with the promise he would follow soon. Six months turned into a year, which turned into a conversation that questioned the foundation of their marriage. It took the coronavirus to get them back under one roof again. While others might complain about the close quarters, this couple hopes to find themselves in each other again. Esther pushes them to worry less about the love that was, and focus now on the love that is.
They left each other emotionally years ago, but with three kids they have been trying to keep it together. For the last two weeks they find themselves confined to a small apartment in Sicily, Italy — he bears the brunt of the domestic duties at home all day. She must report to the hospital every day to help usher in new life as a midwife. Esther helps them come to terms with what these next few months could look like if they learn to communicate with one another in ways that might save their relationship.
Today we’re sharing the first episode of Esther Perel’s new show How’s Work? In it, Esther sits down with coworkers, cofounders and colleagues, and brings her inimitable perspective to workplace relationships and conflicts. You can listen to all episodes right now for free on Spotify and weekly everywhere else. https://smarturl.it/hows-work In this episode, friends and fellow dancers at a strip club: one brings years of experience, the other a youthful energy that turns angry at times. They’re here to talk about boundaries that are crossed, educating “civilians" about their work, family acceptance, and how they'll transition from the sex work industry into professional careers. Can sex work be a bullet point on a resume?
Happily Divorced

Happily Divorced

2019-11-2154:1058

They’re a divorced couple whose two-household relationship may prove that a happy family doesn’t have to end with divorce.
Mom and Monique

Mom and Monique

2019-11-1450:4122

They’re a child desperate to connect with their single mother after 28 years of living in the shadow of a special-needs brother.
A Romantic Revival

A Romantic Revival

2019-11-0745:0532

He’s away a lot. She’s a stepmother at home to four children whose mother died by suicide. Is there anything left over for her?
The Other Woman

The Other Woman

2019-10-3146:3648

She wonders if she can satisfy her attraction to women without losing the husband she loves.
A Small Town Affair

A Small Town Affair

2019-10-2447:2238

Their relationship started with an affair that ended two marriages. Now they wonder if there’s enough trust there to build something stable together.
Young Love

Young Love

2019-10-1747:2427

She lives in Mexico, he lives in the US. Their immigration status has forced them to consider marriage sooner than they might have planned.
Season Three Trailer

Season Three Trailer

2019-03-0845:284

A new season of Where Should We Begin?
Almost two years ago her husband was diagnosed with early onset Parkinson's Disease. They have three kids, a mortgage to pay, and he has developed some compulsive behaviors he isn't proud of. Esther helps them learn how to turn off the caregiver, and remember they are much more than that to each other.
[Contains mature themes] After a discovery in her doctor's office, a woman realizes her husband has been unfaithful. While betrayed and angry, she still feels a desire to stick it out for the sake of the kids. He, meanwhile, is desperate to find a way back to her. Esther takes them back to their upbringings and the years before the infidelities to find a place of mutual compassion.
[Contains mature themes] They’ve been together for more than a decade, but this isn’t the first time they’ve separated. Stuck in a cycle of explosive escalations, a husband and wife want to make it work but can’t break their habit of going for the emotional jugular. Esther encourages them to start their conversations differently.
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Comments (175)

Emma Simpson

Man i woulda left his selfish ass years ago, he's never gonna change. You can hear the self betrayal in her tone, how disempowering. If the daughters needed him that badly he wouldn't be playing daddy elsewhere. Hope mom finds strength.

Jul 28th
Reply

rrp

ITS NOT FUCKING FUNNY!

Jul 23rd
Reply

Allison Bothley

This guy needs years of therapy and it will be a thorny path is she stays with him.

Jul 22nd
Reply

Shane Green

knowing and understanding are different. for a much a he assets his knowledge you'd think he'd understand a bit more. he needs to cry a lot more.

Jul 22nd
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Nancy W

@33:13...the wife asks: "How much more do I put up with because I'm afraid of loss?"...oof, that question hit home😞

Jul 19th
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V B

This man will not change. He is too self-absorbed and unappreciative of his wife. He should consider individual therapy to process these issues, and his wife should consider therapy to process the many losses she has experienced. I wish the wife and her children all the best.

Jul 17th
Reply

Soso Nwaobiala

This was a great listen!

Jun 23rd
Reply

elaheh

Wow... Just wow😢 quite a story. I feel for her. She's angelic. I hope she get through it all sane. I mean, her entire circle is judging her without any support but the molester 💔

Jun 6th
Reply

Nancy W

This podcast is a blessing❤ (also, listening to the wildlife in the background of this episode, while the couple talked, was lovely)

May 15th
Reply

Nuckin Futs

If you're looking for something that will completely blow your mind, then look no further. You've found it.

Apr 26th
Reply

Alexandre Junior

@mamilospod brought me here :)

Apr 22nd
Reply

Rachael Scott

It was hard to listen to a couple bicker with each other instead of listening to each other and listening to Esther. It seems like they didn't really want counseling but just to unload their feelings. The sessions with couples who actively listened and engaged with the therapist, and where some NEW understanding emerged as a result - these were more emotionally satisfying.

Apr 18th
Reply (1)

Keerthi L.S.

I could be wrong, but it felt like esther was forcing her view of the woman onto her... I dont think she necessarily agreed to having a superiority complex, but esther kept coming back to that point.

Apr 4th
Reply

Grace Awino

Love and Love your podcast!

Mar 12th
Reply

Grace Awino

Honestly, I love this Podcast but kindly kindly...someone tell us when Indians have been subject to racism in Kenya!Indians have privilege and own a lot of resources and discriminate Africans. That said, Indians have been and are part of Kenyan community!! We just grew up and knowing we have Kenyan Indians.You were simply privileged that's why you could move and on any day, being a single mother is hard for anyone. But then again its wrong to say such ugly things but I stand to be corrected on this systemic violence( racism).

Jan 22nd
Reply

Regina Kungu

Honestly, I am from Kenya and I have never heard on Kenyans been racist especially to Indians. If anything, Indians are the people who treat Kenyans harshly mostly because most of the time they are the people who offer employment to most Kenyans.

Jan 22nd
Reply (2)

Rennie !!

I'm glad this couple was able to free themselves of other people's rules for marriage

Dec 16th
Reply (1)

Elaine Chang

"You have no idea what it's like to have hardships and not be alone. And neither does he." She's a genius listener.

Dec 5th
Reply (1)

Vongai Doby

I love your Podcast wish you could post more episodes per day

Nov 23rd
Reply

Janette Jones

POWERFUL💔😔👏🏽👏🏽👏🏽

Nov 20th
Reply (2)
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