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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?

42 Episodes
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On Again/Off Again

On Again/Off Again

2020-09-1051:1828

They've been on and off for almost 20 years. While she takes cares of his and their child, she wants to know that he's also there for her. He's been battling depression for years. And the shame that comes with it.
Their whole relationship is based on one big misunderstanding, with infidelity and blame on both sides. Years later, they still can't see the other's perspective. Programming note: This conversation was recorded after the COVID-19 lockdown.
Burdens of the Family

Burdens of the Family

2020-08-2740:0516

They share a legacy of war, a refugee upbringing, and family trauma. Their marriage was seen as taboo, and now they're trying to build a happier relationship for their child. Programming note: This conversation was recorded before the COVID-19 lockdown.
She left her life, her family and her country for a man she met on Reddit. Their love is real, but his family has been hell. Programming note: This conversation was recorded before the COVID-19 lockdown.
When I'm Manic I Cheat

When I'm Manic I Cheat

2020-08-1349:2225

Bipolar, infidelity, open relationships: they're stuck in a world of loaded words. Her friends are convinced she should leave, but she doesn't want to follow in her mother's footsteps. Programming note: This conversation was recorded before the COVID-19 lockdown.
Barely a year into marriage, they're trapped in a cycle of explosive conflict. She can do no right, and he can do no wrong. Programming note: This conversation was recorded before the COVID-19 lockdown.
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

2020-07-1644:4617

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

2020-06-1852:131

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

2019-11-2154:1061

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

2019-11-1450:4123

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

2019-11-0745:0535

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

2019-10-3146:3650

She wonders if she can satisfy her attraction to women without losing the husband she loves.
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Comments (192)

Kamil Ilcewicz

Great episode again <3

Nov 5th
Reply

Jerrica Robertson

wow... I relate to this wife so much

Oct 29th
Reply

Jennifer Aird

Thank you for this. I listened to this on my own and it shifted so many things for me.

Sep 22nd
Reply

Jose Saavedra

Great conversation. I love the idea of a separate email account. You're amazing Esther. Thank you! 😊

Sep 22nd
Reply

Vicky Alvarado

This one is SO complicated. I feel sad for both of them. part of me thinks they need to go separate ways

Sep 18th
Reply

David Liepman

?l

Sep 14th
Reply (1)

Furahini Tluway

loved this

Sep 5th
Reply (1)

Bernice Goldham

criminally one-sided.

Sep 4th
Reply

Furahini Tluway

Amazing couple, I hope they worked things out

Sep 1st
Reply

Cat Moore

this is us...thank you for your help!!

Aug 28th
Reply

Mustafa Thunder

I totally feel for this guy because i AM this guy ... because my father IS this guy. you grow up not feeling wanted and worthy and loveable because of a parent, or maybe both, who was incapable of loving you the right way. for me, it hit home on two occasions. one, the lady was describing this vicious where the man would try to control, control, control, controoooooool and when he saw he how things were unfolding not according to his wishes, he would totally abandon the family and everything and become this reclusive, apathetic guy. there was no middle ground. two, and it hit most hard, was when the lady said how much should I put up with because I am afraid of loss. that just hurt me man.

Aug 25th
Reply

Keerthi L.S.

this is absolutely fantastic

Aug 24th
Reply

Mustafa Thunder

three types of people we deal with: people you care about, people you love and people you DESIRE. "we stay with the people that we love but mourn the fact that they don't desire us." OMG

Aug 24th
Reply

Jessi G

I love this show. Would highly recommend to those seeking erotic/relationship intelligence.

Aug 17th
Reply

Aida Gathoni Njage

Whoa. I come undone. This podcast has both chastised and validated me. Thank you.

Aug 11th
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
Reply

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
Reply

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 (1)
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