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The 90-Day Relationship Cleanse with Deborah Driggs

Today we’re talking about the value of time. Specifically, what is the value of taking time to understand yourself before taking action on your relationship?

To help us work through a 90-day plan to clear the decks and take stock we welcome our friend Deborah Driggs back to the show. Her experience with divorce, trauma and recovery has fueled her across the career landscape and she understands with the best of them the value of exploring oneself before making dramatic change.

Links & Notes

Episode Transcript

Pete Wright:
Welcome to How To Split A Toaster, a Divorce Podcast about saving your relationships from TruStory FM. Today, tell your toaster to slow down.

Seth Nelson:
Welcome. No, that’s not the type of slowing down you meant, Pete. Welcome to the show everyone. I’m Seth Nelson. As always, I’m here with my good friend Pete Wright. Today we’re talking about the value of time, specifically, what is the value of taking time to understand yourself before taking action on your relationship? To help us work through a 90-day plan, to clear the decks and to take stock, we welcome our friend Deborah Driggs, back to the show. Her experience with divorce, trauma, and recovery has fueled her across the career landscape, and she understands with the best of them the value of exploring oneself before making dramatic change. Deborah, welcome back to the Toaster.

Deborah Driggs:
It’s always nice to be asked back. That made me feel-

Pete Wright:
It is nice.

Deborah Driggs:
That made me feel really good, so thank you.

Seth Nelson:
So I did not get married for the first time until I was in my early thirties. People used to say to me all the time, “Well, do you get nervous on first dates?” I’m like, “No, I don’t get nervous on first dates. I get nervous on second dates because I haven’t had a lot of those.” So I didn’t get asked back a lot.

Deborah Driggs:
That’s when you really have to put it into gear, right? Oh my God, we’re going back again. We’re going back in? All right.

Pete Wright:
So funny. It’s like that whole thing, no matter how many people you date, there’s always the milestone of, “You are now the longest person I’ve ever dated.” This is the longest. I’ve made it past every subsequent relationship, you’ve now succeeded. Now I don’t know what to do. And so, that leads us to our conversation today. Deb, we’re excited to have you back because you actually brought this topic to us, and we just really resonated with it. It’s this whole idea of just slowing down, and you have a 90-day kind of methodology, I guess, that you are thinking about, but our entire vibe is let’s slow down and tackle ourselves before we tackle the world around us. Can you talk about where this came from for you?

Deborah Driggs:
Well, a lot of mistakes. You start to figure things out when you make a lot of mistakes and when you’re sitting in that failure, quite often like, “Okay, what is the solution here? What is really going on?” How the 90-day program started was I thought I have to remove … I remember just thinking, “I’m so frustrated, I have to remove everything. Everything has to stop now.” At that time in my life, I kept doing other people’s programs and other people’s coaching and yoga retreats and this and that, and I thought, “No, I’m going to do my own program.” And so, really what I did was I removed … and it all started because I had a breakup. What I felt from that. It was in around November, 2020, and I knew that this relationship wasn’t right. It wasn’t like somebody left me it. I really didn’t want to be in the relationship. But all of a sudden I had this devastating feeling and I thought, okay, it’s not just the breakup. Something’s going on with me.

Seth Nelson:
Have you had that feeling before when you broke up? The devastation?

Deborah Driggs:
Yes. And so, I recognized this pattern because I thought, “Why do I get this way after a breakup?” Or I remember being brought-

Seth Nelson:
Every time you’re going through wash, rinse, repeat, shampoo, bottle instructions.

Deborah Driggs:
Here we got the pattern’s back. And so I thought, “Okay, I need to figure this out because now I’m on a mission.” You know how we can solve other areas in our life? This was that one area that just kept repeating, and I thought.

Pete Wright:
Yeah, it’s like locked in a box. It’s the box that you drag around with you.

Seth Nelson:
Worth the beginning-

Deborah Driggs:
It’s almost like it’s a set thing. Breakup, devastation, stay in bed, don’t eat, cry. It’s like, well, who made those rules?

Seth Nelson:
Wait a minute. Wait a second.

Deborah Driggs:
Wait, wait a minute. That sounds like Pete’s Saturday afternoon.

Pete Wright:
Yeah, I know. What are we doing judging? Come on the show and judge [inaudible 00:04:38]

Seth Nelson:
I didn’t say it was a bad thing, Pete. I thought it sounded pretty good.

Deborah Driggs:
And I’m sure he’s got his tub of Haagen-Dazs, Ben and Jerry’s.

Pete Wright:
Right, exactly.

Seth Nelson:
Oh, my God.

Pete Wright:
I was taught this by Hollywood, Deb. I was taught, in order to break up the cultural expectation is misery for a while and not exploration.

Deborah Driggs:
Exactly. And so, now I find it all very fascinating because now that I’ve done my program that I created, what I realized through doing that was I needed to get back to me first. Just like you said, slow down, let’s just get through lunch and let’s reevaluate what’s really going on here. And so, what I did was I removed everything. I removed, I took everything off the table that wasn’t going to serve me or was going to be something outside of myself to try to fix how I felt. I said, okay-

Seth Nelson:
Give me some examples of that. Wait, wait, what is that?

Pete Wright:
Like of what kind of stuff?

Deborah Driggs:
I did not travel for six months. I did not date for six months. I didn’t do the sexting thing where the guy texts, “Hey, what’s up?” In the past I would just always be chiming in with that. Then I realized, nope, that’s not serving me, so that got removed. By the way, during this process, I went through my entire phone. We’re talking a lot of years, and I cleaned out every contact that wasn’t adding value to my life, and mine probably wasn’t adding value to theirs. And I thought, “Why is this still in my contacts?”

Seth Nelson:
Oh my God, Deborah, if I did that, I would just have to do delete all.

Deborah Driggs:
Yes, well … You collect the wrong-

Pete Wright:
Guess what? Contacts.

Deborah Driggs:
That’s what happened? I started realizing. I thought what I did was kind of like how you clean out your closet. I went through my phone that way. It was like, have I talked to this person in six months? No.

Pete Wright:
Totally.

Deborah Driggs:
Delete. What’s interesting, you guys, I just celebrated my 59th birthday two days ago.

Pete Wright:
Happy birthday.

Deborah Driggs:
Thank you. It was really interesting because now when a text comes in and the contact’s not there, I can just delete it and know that it’s something that I removed and I don’t need that anymore in my life. And so, I got a lot of that on my birthday. I thought, “That’s interesting.” That’s a good time to try to reconnect with somebody on their birthday or when an event happens. So I cleaned out my phone.

Pete Wright:
So you get a lot of just blank numbers and you don’t dive in and respond?

Deborah Driggs:
Not anymore, no.

Pete Wright:
Not anymore.

Deborah Driggs:
Not since I did this program, no, because what I did is I cleaned out anybody that I knew, it was a dead end, and it was kind of that fly by night relationship left my energies.

Pete Wright:
Yeah, it’s like you’re doing, this is the 90-day emotional decluttering. What a good time to do this, right? Here it is. It’s January as we’re talking. We talk about decluttering our closets, decluttering the drawers, and giving away stuff in our house that doesn’t service anymore. This is the emotional decluttering

Deborah Driggs:
I mean, you could not say it more perfectly. That’s exactly what I do. So if you take travel and alcohol and sugar and sexting and dating and binging on Netflix and all of this, you remove it. I do it with my clients. I do it for 90 days. They’re like, “What? Why?” And I’m like, “Just try it.” I did it for 90 days and all of a sudden it was like somebody took this film and it like, “Oh, I can see.” I was like, “Whoa!”

Seth Nelson:
I’m fascinated now. I get all the things that you removed.

Deborah Driggs:
Okay so hold on, so that- Imagine. Then I was like, “Well, why am I stopping? Let’s keep going because more’s going to be revealed.” And so, I did it for six months. I have to tell you, when I went back and started dating with these new set of glasses and this new freedom of I’m back to myself, and I felt it. I could feel the shift. I’d sit on a date and these poor guys had no chance because I was so … No, really, I mean, I’m just saying because you start to realize you’re not really up for small talk anymore. And when you remove that negative stuff that’s not serving, you take away everything that’s affecting you from the neck up, right? I don’t want to take anything on the outside that’s going to change how I feel on the inside. Now you’re really clear and you’re seeing things differently, and now you’re dating with that lens?

Seth Nelson:
But what did you do? You remove all this stuff. I mean, you just described my whole weekend like binging and eating improperly.

Deborah Driggs:
So basically what I did is I created this on two whiteboards. On one whiteboard, here’s what we’re removing, and then on this whiteboard I put everything we’re doing for 90 days. So I did a consistent routine. The reason why I thought of this was because everybody was doing 75 hard, and I didn’t-

Pete Wright:
Wait, what? 75 hard. I don’t know what 75 hard is.

Deborah Driggs:
It was big phrase two years ago where everybody was signing up and you’d get the app and it was two workouts a day, a gallon of water.

Pete Wright:
Oh, it’s like a physical thing.

Deborah Driggs:
It was a physical thing.

Seth Nelson:
A physical cleaning thing.

Deborah Driggs:
People were creating their own little WhatsApp groups and Facebook groups.

Pete Wright:
They’re a little community.

Seth Nelson:
Accountability groups.

Deborah Driggs:
You’re with 75 Hard. So that’s where this all started because I started to do 75 Hard. I thought, “Well, what if I did this for an emotional cleanse?” Forget the physical part of it, because I always seem to be doing other people’s programs and I am physically that was easy for me. What the hard part for me was doing the emotional cleanse. That’s when, I woke up at two in the morning, I was like, “Wait a second.” Because I was really riddled with all this sadness and an anxious feelings and codependency and love addiction and all these different things that were floating around in my head that I was obsessing about. I thought, “What if I clean all that out?”

Pete Wright:
I want to when you start to notice change in your life. Because I imagine that that it’s like anytime you’re quitting something, anytime you quit, you quit drinking coffee, you get headaches and the shakes for a little while, you quit sugar and you feel bad for a while. Anytime you do any sort of cleanse, there is the darkness before the light of day. I’m curious, your experience of that, when you start that process, how long before you realize that there is positive change ahead of you?

Deborah Driggs:
I would say the first mark was right around the 30 day.

Pete Wright:
30 days, okay.

Deborah Driggs:
Because you see things a little bit in the beginning. But here’s the thing that I realized, because I had to really stick to it to make sure that I could really speak about it, and I will say this, it’s probably one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. Because there was a lot of crying, there was a lot of F this, I’m going to go to Cabo. Why am I doing this? I don’t have to do this. Why am I doing this at this point in my life? I don’t have to. I can do anything. I can go to Cabo. See? And that’s this again. Here we go.

Pete Wright:
Yeah, right.

Deborah Driggs:
I can do … No, we’re going to sit through these uncomfortable feelings. This is fascinating. All of a sudden I want to put on my … and then I started writing like crazy.

Pete Wright:
Okay, that’s really interesting. It like unblocks other pieces of you that get blocked up, right? Like, who knows what that thing would be for other folks?

Deborah Driggs:
Here’s what happened.

Pete Wright:
But you start writing.

Deborah Driggs:
I started writing a weekly blog. Now you guys, I didn’t know I was going to start coaching. I didn’t know that I was going to write a book. I didn’t know any of this before I did this. I just wrote a weekly blog thinking, “Well, let’s see if anybody reads it.” Now I get emails weekly from my blog. What I did was I thought, “Well, if I’m going to go through this program, why not write about what I’m going through?” When I look back at my first blogs now, it’s so funny because my writing style has changed, but in the beginning I was so in this cleanse. I remember one of my first blogs was one called Running Shoes because I was like, I just want to run. All of a sudden it hit me, I’ve been a runner my whole life. When things get bad, let’s move. Let’s change relationships. Let’s go on a trip. Let’s change what’s happening.

Pete Wright:
Seth Nelson, did you know that according to the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, 10% of children live with a parent with an alcohol use disorder.

Seth Nelson:
Pete, I did know that. As a family law professional, it’s an alarming statistic every time I hear it. We just got through the holidays, we hope everyone came through that happy, healthy, and safe. We’re in the new year, but we want to always make sure that kids are safe, whether it’s the holidays, Christmas, New Year’s, Thanksgiving, or a random Tuesday. The way we do that is we work with Soberlink to make sure that parents have real time independent third party verification that you can make sure that kids are safe when they’re with you or with your co-parent.

Pete Wright:
Okay, so how do they do that? What does Soberlink do? So Soberlink, it’s a device. It looks like a breathalyzer, but it’s a lot more than a breathalyzer. It is a device with facial recognition built into it. It is connected to your phone, but they also have a cellular model for those in North America who don’t want to deal with phones and all the technology there. You blow into it and it registers your blood alcohol level, and instantly sends it to those who need to know: co-parents, attorneys, those who need to be aware of your sobriety at any given time, particularly when you’re about to drive with the kids.

Seth Nelson:
And I hear you, people out there saying, “Peep, she’s always been accusing me of this, or he’s always been saying this about me, and it’s just not true.” I get it. I litigate it all the time. But when you have he said, she said, courts typically come down on saying, “I’m going to protect the kids.” So take that argument out from the court system. Take it out from making a decision by a governmental employee called a judge. How do you do that? You get Soberlink, you’ll blow into it two or three times a day, and you can show in real time that when you have the children, you have no alcohol in your system. So when you get to court three months, six months, whenever later or mediation, that is no longer an issue because you have independent third party verification that eliminates the he said, she said. It’s going to save you money, time, and a whole lot of heartache and litigation.

Pete Wright:
And you know what the best part is? You get your kids. Blow into soberlink, bing, bam, boom, you’re a parenting hero. You can’t go wrong. You can’t go wrong. So sign up and receive $50 off of your Soberlink device. Just head over to soberlink.com/toaster; that’s soberlink.com/toaster, and save your relationship with your kids. Thanks to Soberlink for sponsoring this show.

Seth Nelson:
So, here’s my question. Because you’re listing off all these things that were certainly true for you that you wanted to change, how does one identify those aspects to which they should change? So for example, you’re saying, “Look, I was running from relationships or I would go on trips.” Is that different for your different clients?

Pete Wright:
Yeah.

Seth Nelson:
Do they have different things that they do to cope?

Pete Wright:
Of course.

Seth Nelson:
How do you identify those things that you need?

Deborah Driggs:
It’s a great question. I go through a list of questions. I’ll give you an example. I’m working with this girl right now. This is interesting because when you transmit off something different, people notice, right? They start to go, “Well, what is she doing because that’s not the way I remember her.” And so, I had somebody from my past reach out to me and she was in a frantic mode when she called me. She’s like, “I know you’re a life coach, da da da da. I’ve been in this relationship for seven years. It’s been off and on, da da, da, da, ad, and all this chaos, da da da da.”
I just sat and listened. I didn’t say one word. Then there was this silence. I just asked her one thing. I said, “Are you coachable?” She’s like, “What?” I said, “Are you coachable? Because I do have a 90-day program. And just from what you just said for the last 10 minutes …” Because I didn’t interrupt her. I just listened. I said, “Just from what you said, this 90 day program can.” She goes, “Well, I’ve done 90 days. I’ve done 30 days. I’ve done …” Not to be rude, but it’s not working.
What we do, I think how to answer your question, is we go down some sort of checklist. Basically, if you’re suffering, if you’re feeling this anxious obsession over something else or somebody else, then this is a program for you. Because when we start having that turmoil inside of ourself about someone else, that’s a very good sign to me that an emotional cleanse is due. Because all this stuff starts to stack. I got divorced in 2004. I’ve had a couple of relationships, and every relationship since then, I’ve had that feeling after it ends of just abandonment, devastation, turmoil, waking up at two in the morning. It doesn’t have to be that way.

Seth Nelson:
You mentioned something very interesting because we had JT, who is a physical fitness coach. He does more than that. He does nutrition and healthy eating, not just to look better, but to be healthier. On his questionnaire it says, 1 to 10, 10 being the most committed, 1 being the least committed, how committed are you to making this change? Then you answer that question. Then the very next statement is, if that answer wasn’t 8 or higher, you can stop now. You’re not ready.

Deborah Driggs:
Thank you. So when I do my 15 minute complimentary, I have people call me and tell me all the stuff, the story. I get this whole story and I can see it right away. They can’t see it. I can see it right away because when you’re telling me this whole big story, I’m like, “Okay.” And I ask the same thing, “Are you coachable? How badly do you want to make this change?” Listen, I take a three-month commitment financially for a reason, because most people want to drop out after two weeks. Because when they start to get uncomfortable, they’re like, “Yeah, I’ll just go back to those old habits.” And so, I do the same thing. I’m like, “I’m not for everybody because you got to really stick through it.”

Seth Nelson:
But there’s a good point to that because some people will actually focus more on the money than on the change. But when you make them kind of buck up … But my question is, if you’re in a relationship and you kind of see this thing happening, you want to stay in this relationship, but you’re having some issues or you’ve had issues in the past, does this require your partner to do it as well? Or is it just a solo deal?

Deborah Driggs:
I would say solo deal to start.

Pete Wright:
I mean, isn’t that the whole point? Exploring yourself before you can do everything else.

Deborah Driggs:
You can’t transmit anything you haven’t got. And so, we have to work on this first before we try to … See, that’s usually in relationships, you’ll hear, “Well, he’s doing this, she’s doing this.” It’s all about what the other person is doing instead of, “Well, let me sit back and figure out what it is I’m doing.”

Seth Nelson:
You’re in a relationship, it’s not going well. Typically people say, “Let’s go to marriage counseling. Let’s go to counseling together.” But what you’re saying is you need to just work on yourself first. So I’m imagining a situation where someone says to their partner or spouse, “Things aren’t going well, I’m going to go work on me for a while.” That’s got to be pretty scary to that spouse hearing that because they don’t know what might change and they’re not in the room. How do you deal with that? Or how does the person going through the change deal with that if they have a spouse that’s not like, “Oh, well let’s go to counseling together,” and they’re like, “No, no, no, no, I just need to work on me”? Almost like, “It’s not you, it’s me.” It almost sounds like the old breakup line from high school.

Deborah Driggs:
Right? No, and it’s not. This is the beautiful thing. So I do have someone who’s going through a divorce right now, and I said, “Well, before you really go the distance with this, do you want to try the 90 days and just see if maybe you get a different perspective?” Because sometimes we … well, not sometimes, when we remove all these distractions and all these outside influences and we can get really quiet with ourselves, the answer might be different. So that’s what I worry for her. And so, she said, yeah, she was willing. Because I said, “It’s never for a lack of love that people divorce.” I have to say, I’ve been really fascinated by this because now when I talk to … I was just talking to a really close friend. We got divorced around the same time. We were both saying how if we would’ve worked on ourselves at that time, because we’re have very similar stories, that we probably would still be married. Because as you get older, you realize that it’s nonsense, these things that we …
So anyways, to go back to that question, I think that it’s a really beautiful thing if you can go to your partner and say, “I’m feeling something and I’m not sure what it is. If it’s okay with you, I’d like to work on myself to find out what it is that’s going on. I feel like I’m bringing that into this relationship and I want to see if it is me and where I’m at in this relationship. Because I really want to be here to give.” And I think when you bring something to the table of love and of giving, and that’s why a mentor and a coach is so imperative, really, because when somebody who’s good … Because if I said to this woman, “Why don’t you just go and let your partner know that there’s a divorce on the table? I don’t think he wanted it.” And so I said, “Why don’t you just say, ‘I want to come from a loving place right now, but I am going through something.’ It could be a midlife.

Pete Wright:
Deb, I got to pivot. I have to pivot because I really want to bring that experience back to the law because I feel like this is where, if you’re listening to this and you’re in a place where you think divorce might be on the table, how does this model potentially help? We talk often about Seth being a attorney and counselor at law, and I feel like this is a chance to at least explore for people for a minute how you might benefit from slowing down before you start the process. Seth, I mean, does anything come up for that?

Seth Nelson:
Oh, yeah. So it’s a question I get a lot is what’s the difference between divorce and legal separation? I say, “Well, listen, in Florida, check your local jurisdiction, basically there is no legal separation.” So you’re either married or you’re not. And there’s always a gray area in the law, which I’m not going to get the nuance of this, but from the emotional divorce, it can play a huge impact. Now, what Deborah’s talking about is going to your spouse before you say, “Look, I’m going to go talk to the lawyer. We’ve mentioned divorce a few times. Obviously things aren’t going well. I’m going to go work on myself.”
But if you’re having that open, honest, vulnerable conversation with your spouse, that’s one thing. If you go work on that all by yourself and their spouse doesn’t know, and you kind of be like, “Okay, I’ve done all this work. I realize this relationship doesn’t work for me any longer. But I’m in a better place. I’m going to focus on myself. And then you mention divorce, and then you hire the lawyer?” You’ve gone through the grieving process. You’re at acceptance now. You’ve done all the hard work and your spouse might not see it coming. It doesn’t matter what you’ve told your spouse. It doesn’t matter whether you say, “I’m really going to file for divorce this time.” They will be shocked. And when the people are shocked, you’re going to think, “How did they not see this coming?” Where they just might not have seen it? It was in their blind spot.
So the way it impacts on the law is that’s one of those things where people are splitting up and they’re at a different stage of the grief, which because they are. They deal with the divorce differently, and sometimes that makes it harder, not easier because they’re in different places. So one person will be angry, so they’re going to want to fight and they’re going to want to negotiate and just bargain. I’ll do anything to save the marriage, not to get rid of the divorce. Or I don’t want to get divorced, I want you in my life, and the only thing keeping me connected with you right now is this divorce litigation. And as crazy as that sounds-

Pete Wright:
So I’ll string it out as long as I can.

Seth Nelson:
I’m going to just ride this wave until it is done.

Pete Wright:
That’s the thing. I think rationalizing these two things. One is being true to yourself and finding your authentic sort of whole and doing so in a way that to the point of our entire podcast is targeted towards saving the most important relationships in your lives if you still deem them worth saving. But doing so openly seems like you’re doing a service to both parties.

Deborah Driggs:
And how do you know? That’s my question?

Pete Wright:
How do you honor that? How do you come back?

Deborah Driggs:
That’s where I come in. How do you know?

Pete Wright:
Totally.

Deborah Driggs:
Is this true? The questions that I ask when women come and they go, “Da da da da da da,” and they give me the whole story and I go, “How do you know?” Then they stop and they go, “Well, I’m not sure.” I go, “That alone is reason to do the 90 days.” Because if you’re not sure and you’re just playing the guessing game, but there are still feelings, just go through those 90 days. Now, obviously-

Seth Nelson:
Deborah, I have those same conversations a little differently. They’ll call me and they’ll start telling me all about their spouse. I’ll say, “What’s your goal for this conversation?” Then they’ll tell me, “Well, I want to get divorced.” I said, “That’s not going to happen in this conversation.” What’s your goal when we hang up the phone? I’m here to serve you. I’m specifically asking you what kind of service do you want? What are you asking me to do for you right now? Then they’ll say, “Well, I want some information,” or “How does the process work? I want to know about the kids, how that works.”
I say, “Okay.” And I’ll start going through some basic questions. How long you’ve been married? Are there kids? How many? Ages? Then they’ll start telling me about the spouse. Or I’ll say, “What kind of parenting plan and time sharing and custody visitations are you thinking about?” “Well, I want this, but he won’t agree.” I said, “I’m not asking about him.” It is really hard for people when they’re initially talking to me and they’re emotional to not talk about their spouse. I force it back to them because I finally will tell them, “I don’t care what your spouse wants in this conversation. I represent you.”

Deborah Driggs:
Thank you.

Seth Nelson:
I want to know what you want.

Deborah Driggs:
By the way-

Seth Nelson:
It’s a struggle.

Deborah Driggs:
And by the way, I bet you’re just getting the short version of what I get because I’m the coach. I get the longest stories.

Seth Nelson:
Oh, Deborah, I get longest stories all day long and then I’ll tell them my rate. And if they want me just to listen … This is what separates me from different lawyers. I will tell them them, “I’m not the warm and fuzzy lawyer. If you’re looking for that, there’s another one that will sit back, put their feet up, crack a beer, and charge you a lot of money to listen to your story. But that doesn’t help move your case forward.”

Deborah Driggs:
It’s so funny.

Seth Nelson:
We have a way of communicating with our office that’s going to save time and money to get that important information when we need it. But it’s a balancing act because I have to build trust and rapport with the client, which you can’t always do if you just cut them off.

Deborah Driggs:
Well, and here’s what’s really interesting, I’ve gotten to the point where this poor … I keep coming back to this example because I’m working with her right now. But she wants so desperately to tell me everything about this guy and his habits and this and that. I said, “Here’s the deal. We can spend this 50 minutes talking about him, but I really want to talk about you and I want to help you. I don’t really care about him.”

Pete Wright:
A lot of people, though-

Deborah Driggs:
At the end of the day, he has nothing to do with the conversation I want to have with you.

Pete Wright:
I would just devil’s advocate then though, Deb. If there is any sense in talking through all of the things that are running around in your head, might it be catharsis? Might it be, I just have to vomit all this emotional stuff out before I can talk about myself. Is there any sense to that?

Deborah Driggs:
Maybe for the first call. That’s why I said for the first call, I just sit and listen. But then when we’re having our call once a week and the focus is going back to him, I have to rein it back in because it’s not serving that person if they’re just going to obsess about what he did. I’m like, “We got to stick to your part in this. You chose it, you allow it, so let’s go there.”

Pete Wright:
Yeah, right.

Seth Nelson:
That’s the same thing that judges will tell you. Judge Tibbles mentioned this when he was on the show.

Pete Wright:
One of the guests.

Seth Nelson:
That lawyers, when they put on a case, will talk all bad about the other side, which doesn’t give the judge a clear indication of what your client can do or has done for the marriage or for their children or the finances or the worker, any of that. The judges are looking for real people and real parents to come before them, and you’re going to get a lot more mileage when you say, “Yeah, I’ve got three kids and they’re different ages and let me tell you, from six to nine o’clock at night is hard. I’m doing picking up from extracurricular activities, getting them fed, getting them bathed, getting the homework done, trying to get them to put down their electronics.” Be real about it and not say, “Oh my God, the bedtime routine is so nice.” It’s not the three year old and four year old say “I want water” 15 times.

Pete Wright:
I think that gets to one of those sort of perennial questions. If we’re talking about peeling back and finding your authentic self. Also realizing that the complications of real life still exist. Navigating through the hardship of the emotional decluttering that we’re talking about is sometimes, I imagine, challenged by the fact that the three-year-old and four-year-old are still asking for water every night and a constant reminder of the reality of the relationship that you’re existing in.

Seth Nelson:
I think that’s spot on. But Deborah, my question is, when you’re having guests or your clients work with you on their 90-day plan-

Deborah Driggs:
Oh by the way guys, do you know that every person that I’m working with, this is it? This is what I’m attracting. I have all women clients right now, all women that are trying to get out of a relationship or get divorced or find a relationship.

Seth Nelson:
And when they’re doing that, but they have kids with that other spouse, so the one they’re trying to get a divorce from.

Deborah Driggs:
I don’t have that situation.

Seth Nelson:
You don’t have that right now?

Deborah Driggs:
I have a woman that’s been in this off and on relationship for seven years, and she has her daughter from a previous marriage.

Seth Nelson:
Gotcha.

Deborah Driggs:
So I have that. Then I have another woman who’s going through a divorce, no kids. I have another woman who is in her thirties that’s desperately wanting to get married and keep stating as she puts it, “Assholes. They’re all assholes.” I go, “Well, they’re not all. Let’s get through lunch. Bring it back.”

Pete Wright:
Yeah, let’s get through lunch. That’s going to be the title of the episode. Just get through lunch.

Deborah Driggs:
Let’s just get through lunch.

Pete Wright:
All right, just get through lunch with Deborah Driggs. Deborah, fantastic. Talk about the book. You’re excited to have the book. You’ve got a book out.

Deborah Driggs:
Can you believe it?

Pete Wright:
Let’s talk about that journey.

Deborah Driggs:
I think that last time I was here, I mean, it was like I was still working on it. So yeah, the journey is, I have a published book, Son of a Basque. This is a manuscript that I found that was written over 40 years ago. Son of a Basque is based on my grandfather’s life. It’s a historical fiction because he is no longer with us. He’s on the book, but he’s no longer with us. I rewrote a lot of it. There were a lot of things that needed to be, not changed, but make it so everything matched. A lot of editing had to take place.
But the story is beautiful. It’s a beautiful story. I’m going to send you all a copy signed, but the reviews are so good.

Pete Wright:
Obviously.

Deborah Driggs:
I was at the hair salon two days ago. I met the shampoo bowl and the girl’s shampooing my hair. She goes, “I’m halfway through your book.” I said, “You are?” Because she’s really young. I said, “How old are you?” She tells me she’s like 24. She goes, “I love it. It’s so fun.” I go, “Wait a second, you love my book?” She said, “Yeah. Oh my God, it’s so good.” I go, “You know what? That tells me everything.” Because I was really marketing to 45 and up and mostly men because it’s kind of a guy story.

Pete Wright:
Yeah, it’s a guy story. True.

Deborah Driggs:
She’s like, “No, I love it.” So I thought, “Wow.” I don’t know if she’s just trying to have a conversation with me, but either way-

Pete Wright:
That’s sweet.

Deborah Driggs:
… she said, “Because I want to get it for my brother.” I said, “I’ll bring a copy for you next time I come in.”

Seth Nelson:
That’s lovely.

Pete Wright:
That’s a nice journey.

Deborah Driggs:
I’m just saying it’s been beautiful because a lot of people have bought it or have given us gifts and they’ve just come back to me and said, “Deborah, I read it in two days. It’s such a beautiful story.”

Pete Wright:
It’s beautiful.

Deborah Driggs:
So now I’m working on the screenplay. Who would’ve thought?

Seth Nelson:
Are you really? No kidding.

Pete Wright:
Well, fantastic. I’m available to play the title character if you’re looking.

Deborah Driggs:
Well, you have a little Javier Bardem.

Pete Wright:
I could, yeah.

Deborah Driggs:
A little Javier Bardem look.

Pete Wright:
I could do that.

Deborah Driggs:
I think he would make the perfect main character.

Seth Nelson:
I’m available to go to the movie, watch it.

Deborah Driggs:
That’s me too.

Pete Wright:
Hey, you’re talking about this program. Tell us where people can find out more about your work and the work you’re doing for relationships.

Deborah Driggs:
Well, I’ll tell you what. If anybody’s listening to the show and something that I said resonate, they’re like, “I need to do an emotional cleanse,” I will give them 50% off just from the show.

Pete Wright:
Oh, that’s very nice. Very generous.

Deborah Driggs:
And so all they have to do is go to my website, which is my name, it’s so easy, deborahdriggs.com. Sign up for my personal letter and send me a note saying you heard me on this show and I’ll send them a link to get 50% off. I will also send anybody that subscribes to my newsletter if they’re not interested in coaching, a signed copy of the book.

Pete Wright:
Nice [inaudible 00:37:28]

Deborah Driggs:
Some fun holiday gift. I mean, it’s the holidays and I know by the time this show airs, it’ll be the new year. So guess what? Happy New Year gifts.

Seth Nelson:
Perfect.

Pete Wright:
Outstanding. Outstanding. Well, this is as always, Deb, it’s great to see you. Thank you so much for coming back-

Deborah Driggs:
Thank you guys so much.

Pete Wright:
… and talking about your latest work. You’re delightful. And also again, happy belated birthday.

Deborah Driggs:
Thank you. Thank you so much guys.

Pete Wright:
Seth, are we done? Last looks? You got anything else you want to? You got any plugs? Anything you want to …

Seth Nelson:
I have no plugs, man. It’s like the new year. I’m working away.

Deborah Driggs:
He’s a lawyer.

Seth Nelson:
Holidays are over.

Deborah Driggs:
It’s the holidays. What else do you want to plug?

Pete Wright:
That’s right. Yeah, that’s right. What else you got?

Deborah Driggs:
Lawyer holidays.

Seth Nelson:
Okay. We’re we’re recording this show right before Christmas basically. It’s airing just after the new year, and here’s what’s happening. I’m looking into the future, okay? I’m getting calls saying I am never spending another holiday with my in-laws. That’s what’s going in my life right now.

Pete Wright:
Oh, yes.

Seth Nelson:
So no, I got no plugs. I’m in my office early in the morning, staying late at night, working on the weekends. Haven’t seen my fiance in days, in weeks. That that’s what’s going on. But I appreciate you thinking about me, bud.

Pete Wright:
Oh, always, always thinking about you, and thinking about all of you downloading and listening to this show. We sure appreciate your time and attention. If you have any questions, head over to howtosplitatoaster.com and you can tap a button that says, “Hey, I got a legal question. I want Seth to answer it.” It’ll go into the queue and Seth will answer it on an upcoming show.
Thank you everybody. On behalf of the fantastic Deborah Driggs.

Deborah Driggs:
Thank you.

Pete Wright:
And Seth Nelson, America’s favorite divorce attorney, I’m Pete Wright, and we’ll catch you next week right here on How to Split A Toaster, a Divorce Podcast about saving your relationships.

Speaker 4:
Seth Nelson is an attorney with NLG Divorce and Family Law with offices in Tampa, Florida. While we may be discussing family law topics, How To Split a Toaster is not intended to, nor is it providing legal advice. Every situation is different. If you have specific questions regarding your situation, please seek your own legal counsel with an attorney licensed to practice law in your jurisdiction. Pete Wright is not an attorney or employee of NLG Divorce and Family Law. Seth Nelson is licensed to practice law in Florida.

Seth Nelson is a Tampa based family lawyer known for devising creative solutions to difficult problems. In How to Split a Toaster, Nelson and co-host Pete Wright take on the challenge of divorce with a central objective — saving your most important relationships with your family, your former spouse, and yourself.