The Wisteria Lane Syndrome

Apr
24
2009
by
Lynne McTaggart
/
44
Comments

My two teenager daughters are suckers for Desperate Housewives, the television soap opera detailing all the jealousy, intrigue, backstabbing and criminal activity that lays behind the doors and manicured lawns of that upscale suburban neighborhood, Wisteria Lane.
Although almost all the inhabitants are beautiful and affluent, no one stays happy for long. All of these ‘best friends’ are miserable in their constant comparison with each other.
So I was fascinated to read a recent intriguing study of suicide, carried out by Mary Daly and Daniel Wilson of the US Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, with Norman Johnson of the US Census Bureau.  They examined suicide deaths to see if it had anything to do with income.
The rich are different
Although it appeared that the less you made the more likely you were to kill yourself, closer analysis showed this wasn’t the case. 
It was true that individuals in the very lowest income bracket – with family incomes below $20,000 in 1990 dollars (the equivalent of about $31,000 US in 2006) — were significantly more likely to commit suicide than those with incomes above $60,000.
But for anyone making anything over $20,000, one’s own income had no significant effect on suicide risk.
The only time individual income mattered in any way was in comparison to the level of income in your own county. 
And most startling of all, the richest areas of America had the greatest risk of suicide.
So Daly, Wilson and Johnson examined this a little more closely.  They looked at whether this had anything to do with the high cost of living, or the high cost of housing, or the difference between renters and buyers, the cost of living across the entire state, the reporting biases about suicides or even poorer access to emergency health care. 
Me and Mrs. Jones
But in every instance, the only connection that wouldn’t go away was the effect of comparing one’s own income to others around you.  And the richer everyone was around you, the more miserable you were likely to be.
In the crudest terms, for every $10,000 more your neighbors made than you, your suicide probability increased by 7.5 per cent.
Simple desire to keep up with the Joneses was the most likely ingredient for self-harm.
Most significantly, in the Federal Reserve study, the higher the benchmark (in terms of the most affluent neighbourhoods), the higher the stakes, the more likely the inhabitants were to find themselves falling short and the greater the suicide risk.
Income envy across the pond
Income envy also is rife in Europe.  Another study prepared by Andrew Clark and Claudia Senik from the Paris School of Economics, showed once again that Europeans also are constantly judging themselves by examining where they stand on the economic ladder in comparison to everyone around them. 
In the European Social Survey, which polled 34,000 people from 23 countries, Clark and Senik found that three-quarters of those polled in Europe believed that it was important to compare their own earnings against others.  Nevertheless, the more they did so, the unhappier they became. 
The researchers judged happiness through responses to questions about whether people believe that they live comfortably, felt optimistic, had been depressed recently and felt satisfied with their lives thus far.
The least harmful to overall happiness were comparisons made against co-workers, while income envy of family members proved to be far more erosive. 
Nevertheless, the toxic of all was what I call the Wisteria Lane Syndrome: comparisons against one’s friends.  These were considered twice as damaging as against work colleagues.
The constant yardstick
The other fascinating aspect of this study and others that examine happiness is that they scientifically confirm that overall rise in standard of living doesn’t buy happiness and contentment. 
As two studies have demonstrated, someone’s self-declared happiness had nothing to do with any objective benchmark, such as increase in overall national income, but only whether he felt that he measured favourably against entirely personal benchmarks: his aspirations and expectations of what he should be making, particularly as compared with everyone around him.
It’s called the Easterlin Paradox, in psychology studies, and it means that there is no objective measure of success, only individual measures formed by our aspirations and expectations and those of our nearest and dearest.
A yardstick is always on hand, to measure my accomplishments, my possessions, my money and even my children against yours.
So it’s come to this.  In our modern-day world, happiness is entirely dependent upon expectation and certain entirely arbitrary or conditional standards against which you judge yourself, which are usually what you believe are the standards of other people.
Studies of optimists and pessimists show that optimistic people only compare themselves with those less fortunate (lucky me), whereas pessimistic people make constant comparisons with the more successful and find themselves wanting (unlucky me). Both in a sense are toxic. On the one hand you enhance yourself by demonstrating that you’re so much better off than all the other sorry souls around you; on the other, that you are the sorriest soul you know.
Taking out the competition
There’s a growing batch of research demonstrating that when you remove the competitive nature of human relationships, we begin to flourish. New developments in behaviorial psychology and biology reveal that we were never meant to live a life of fundamental isolation and self-serving survival.
Compare this to the research I’ve discussed before of a sampling of Americans in the US’s lowest income bracket.  They suffered from virtually no stress about their financial circumstances, so long as they had two means of support:  a strong spiritual connection and a strong community. Clearly, even when engaged in a daily struggle to survive, they were able to manage so long as they didn’t do so alone.
It’s now evident why ‘Do not covet your neighbor’s goods’ was included in the Ten Commandments. Comparison is one of the most toxic of all human endeavors.  It’s time we thought about setting up a new style of neighborhood, where the primary goal isn’t a bigger car or a more immaculate lawn but a committed, supportive and sharing community, whatever its income level.

Lynne McTaggart

Lynne McTaggart is an award-winning journalist and the author of seven books, including the worldwide international bestsellers The Power of Eight, The Field, The Intention Experiment and The Bond, all considered seminal books of the New Science and now translated into some 30 languages.

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44 comments on “The Wisteria Lane Syndrome”

  1. Good Day,
    Live is not a competition. We are distracted by the invitation to base our own self-worth on someone else's talents, abilities or possessions. To compare is to see ourselves are separate physical beings when in fact we are multiple creative expressions of the same primary energetic source. This is a symptom of the fundamental flaw in our money value system.
    Thank you for sharing this research.
    Namaste,
    Jacquelyn-Rose

  2. Life would be so much easier without the ego's relentless obsession to be more special than others.

  3. Thats why envy is one of the Seven Deadly Sins
    All these things were thought out many centuries ago by very wise people.
    Love and Light

  4. Fascinating study, but as an optimist i dont think i am better than anyone else, if i can help i do!!

  5. currently im undertaking funded research into the pyscholgical effects of debt, and gratitude,and how behaviour is modifed by debt.
    and while i cant anticiapte the out comes at this stage,what does intrige me is how some people rise above while others sink.
    Maybe gratitude makes a difference?
    and may be connection to the bigger than the individual separateness gives the strength to face adversity.
    its really exciting work especially after having been subjected to debt heavies myself,its inspiring

  6. I can relate to this not as women from the suburbs, but as man. After graduating as an engineer in 70ties, I landed a job in a multinational company [still in business], working in an office. I realized that I could not come to the office in the same suit every day, and there was a whole host of concerns, visible and invisible pressures, that made me quite frustrated and outright unhappy. Living up to expectation, real or construed by myself. It was a shock to me.
    Then I realized that this regime I could not change, I had to get out of it or surrender. I thanked my God that I had not started a family or had a mortgage. One morning on the way to the office, I went to a five star hotel, enjoyed a grand breakfast, and found an excuse for being late, then later that day I resigned. My boss was very unhappy. He said: We are very pleased with you - you will be carried up the ladder, just be patient. I told him, that it was not a pressure for promotion; I just could not see myself working in such an organization, without criticizing anyone who did. That’ decades ago, and since then I have avoided credit, have no driver license, I never had my own family, and I live such a spartan life most people would be bored to death, while I feel ecstatic every morning. Even if I have more than enough money in my accounts, I do not raise my so called living standard. It became a habit in the lean years. I am never bored, and I spend most of my time alone. My point being: living up to external expectation is indeed a killer; it deprives you of everything, especially your dignity. The Kingdom of God is within you. Luke 17.21. That’s my reminder, and other words of advice from that- and other great ancient Masters.
    So becoming a loner is one way out. Very rarely do I see my family, and typically they always tell me what is wrong with me, hardly asking what I am doing or what interests me. I left my home as 17, became a merchant seaman, and started my education rather late, which I financed myself. So my family had no leverage over me. Visiting them I am thinking: I’m out of here in 24 hours, so I will put up with this. Love is to leave people alone as they are, and if there are too many control freaks around, get out! Find something inside of you [your soul] no one can touch, and be economically independent, which really does not take a lot.

  7. We´d be far better of realising that al the things that can make life comfortble are temporary assets provided for us. To many people are absorbed in jobs and lifestyles trying to get the money to buy all kind of goods they call their own. In order to gain some sort of status that withers away.
    I´t might get you some sort of short lived attention peak from others.
    But the thing that really amounts to something is our divine wealth. Which comes from sharing our unique gifts with the world.
    And that lasts a live time or longer as we enrich others rather then seaking fullfilment trough some superficial materialism.
    Dreamgreetings from Friesland
    Boomfriend Ruerd

  8. I am glad to know there is at least one other person on this earth that is similar to me...Helge Sundar. Spartan is the way to go. Besides! You can't take it with you, can you?

  9. My life's journey has been a life of service. At the end of our road, we should be able to look back and see that only Love...is real...for we an take nothing else with us when we go. Blessings for your day...and thank you for the great article.

  10. Helge Sundar, once again, my hero. Way ahead of what is going to be the only way to survive.
    I believe watching those vacuous "desperate" (they have no clue about desperation) housewives is another step on the road to ruin.
    However, "being who you truly are" is to be considered exceedingly eccentric in this consumer mad/throwaway society.
    NOT "keeping up with the Joneses" exceedingly suspicious.
    The mangled faces from cheap plastic surgery reflect our plastic society.
    Freedom is knowing your limitations.
    ☯Namasté☯

  11. Oh my God. So how am I in the spirituality stakes? If I can not win the financial competition perhaps I can go one better and be better than my neighbours and win the spiritual comprtition.
    Am I looking good, Keep that calm face, smile when I really mean quite the opposite. Read the holy books and store the best quotes to make myself look good. I just wish there was no truth in these observations, but there is both personally and collectivly. Competition with one another isolates us and will darken our hearts and spirits. Lets call this process by its right name FEAR.
    This was my response without editing to reading this article. Namaste

  12. Please ck your grammar books re the use of LAY and LIE. "What lies behind the doors of those living no Wisteria Lane."

  13. Please ck your grammar books re the use of LAY and LIE. "What lies behind the doors of those living on Wisteria Lane."

  14. TRINE let us know how it all works out.. sounds interesting. yep FEAR..of not being 'enough' (loved = promoted etc).. 'Love one another' has to be the best advise.. Does this mean that women don't have to feel like they HAVE to shave or wear make-up.. that we CAN be enough if we just wash and are tidy.. OR will we have to eternally have to live up to (whose.. when did it start) bosses, neighbours, friends expectations.. Helge: Einstein was said to have a cupboard of a number of the same suit.. i think this is a very efficient idea. This research will have me questioning if there (where) is anywhere in my life i am comparing myself to my peers etc.. namaste

  15. Enjoyed the conversation. Be interested in Trine's results. Re Wisteria Lane folks, the thing to be aware of, they each tend to go past the desperation, and ultimately in the end, good and caring actions and words prevail.

  16. I am so grateful for the work in positive psychology on character strengths and virtue.
    Everyone has them and when using them
    to serve a purpose greater than ourselves it leaves a deep sense of gratification. What a wonderful antidote to making comparisons.

  17. I prefer an attitude of appreciation . Beginning with myself ,my body and extending out to include people ,family , the Earth,air,wind,water ,trees ,all animals,birds, the sun,flowers,rain ,wind, laughing,crying. My GOD it is good to be ALIVE ! In Love and appreciation ,Ruth.

  18. Helge Sundar I do appreciate your sharing of your experiences. I just retold it to my husband as we are having our saturdaybreakfast with freshbaked bread and plenty of time to enjoy and talk.
    Namasté

  19. Those in advertising know that envy, like fear, can motivate us to buy, buy, buy. In recognizing the source, perhaps we can turn from "things" to one another.

  20. This is so true! When I was in my 20's and lived in an apartment complex with many of my friends-who also made comparable salaries life was a lot of fun because we were all in the same boat and shared most of life's circumstances.
    Then I moved to a very wealthy city-- the homes are in the million dollar range (not mac mansions-older and stately) and are one street over from the tiny ranch homes that we reside in. My children's friends lived in the million dollar homes. This was very stressful for us as a family because these well-to-do families as one example take fabulous vacations, Europe, ski-the Alps, Italy, France you name it-- they do it. We can rarely afford a vacation because even tho my husband has an Ivy League education-he is a teacher and when we met he made $13k a year!
    In addition, both of my children went to a private school (free) also, with mega wealthy people as well as famous celebrities children. It was hard on them to sit by and hear about all the wonderful things their peers were able to do and this brought up some uncomfortable discussions at times.
    No matter how much you are grounded and have values that you are trying to pass on to your children, it can be difficult to be with wealthy people all of the time who have everything, do everything and for them life is a smorgasbord. These wealthy families are not unhappy people because they are wealthy--in fact, they are some of the happiest people I know and have wonderful smart kids as well.
    Also, to make matters more complicated my husbands siblings are also wealthy. Their children go to Ivy league colleges and these families also travel the world.
    We have given our children a college education-but not Ivy League and it's a struggle to pay the tuition and they have had to make loans which they will have to pay while their friends and cousins go on the grad school, they have to go to work to pay off those loans.
    I don't feel we coveted anything during those years but we did many times feel like the odd family out and it was tiresome not being able to take part in the conversations when it came to all the fun things they could afford to do as a family. Being on the other side always listening to friends who are talking about how much fun their family had in Greece that summer was so difficult. We were struggling to pay the paltry membership to the pool.
    If I had to do it over, I would move to a place where we could find more common ground with other families. Always being the family who scrapes by even though people are fond of you--isn't a life I'd choose to raise my children.
    Hopefully, that experience will make my children stronger but those wealthy kids and cousins are strong happy loved people and on top of their game, doing really well in college and life so, there were no fall out that I can see from living in a prosperous family.

  21. Fascinating comments to this article. From my experience, there is "TRUE" happiness, and the (illusion) of happiness. When I identify who I am with the amount of money I have, or other physical "things", I'm stuck in the false belief of who I think I am: a physical body with a plethora of thoughts and opinions. With this, my happiness is based on how much more I have than others, or how much less I have than than others. From this point of view, I'm experiencing the illusion of separation. Regardless of whether my happiness is based on having more than you, or a lack of happiness for having less, both extremes are based on my primordial feeling of not being good enough. However, when I detach from this false belief and feel the depth of my true nature, which is Life itself, in various forms, I can observe the accumulation of my wealth, the few dollars and spare change lying on my desktop, with intense joy knowing that in this moment, this is what's meant to be. And my attention then shifts to my breathing.

  22. First message ever.Peace. Thank you so much for the connection. Boy some of you are real warriors. I mean that in a good way.

  23. The greatest obsession that humanity suffers is of 'that which should be'.
    It is a kind of madness. The really healthy person has no concern with that which should be. His whole concern is the immediate, that which is. And you will be surprised: if you enter into the immediate, you will find the ultimate in it.
    If you move into that which is close by, you will find all the distant stars in it.
    If you move in the present moment, the whole eternity is in your hands.
    Osho

  24. Thanks for taking up one of the biggest issues for us humans: Having expectations, and when they are not met we face suffering.
    Buddha was the first to be so specific about life - either you have expectations, and you will suffer eventually, or you live a detached life, and become happy with what you've got.
    I see there are many other viewpoints on your article, and to me they seem to be all on the same subject, even though it can be described in many ways. It's good to have a "community" where people are aware of at least some of their behavioral patterns.

  25. Guess I must be the only one who reads these blogs who is genuinely poor. Yes, one doesn't need great riches to be happy, but one does need some money. I have serious health problems, including chronic pain, that I can't get treated because, sadly, I'm a US citizen which means I must have a lot of money in order to afford the health care I need. I put myself through college only to have graduated with mortgage-sized loans and to get a notice from the government that I won't be able to collect social security when I grow old and that they are going to garnish my already tiny wages. I don't have a car and must walk and take public transportation everyday and often it's dangerous. I interact with a lot of inner city street people on the buses and it's very stressful as well as unsafe. I'm having difficulty finding a decent paying job and not having a car is making it harder as most jobs in my area require a car. Most Americans I meet pass judgment on people like me, seem to brainwashed into believing that this is the land of opportunity. Well, it isn't. Do you need money to be happy? Yes, some money--not all the money in the world. Greed, selfishness and hoarding of money are what are destroying this country right now. I'm always amazed when I listen to people who are living in nice houses, driving nice cars, complain. I'd be happy just to have an old, used car, just some form of transportation so that I can get around.
    I appreciate the sentiment behind this study, Ms. McTaggart, but I think you're being VERY insensitive. You are wealthy and successful but most Americans (you live in England, right?) are struggling right now and it is NOT fun.
    Life in the USA is not a television show. I'm talking about real life for most Americans out here in the real world. Many of us are struggling. It's amazing how friends, neighbors, even relatives will desert you once you lose your livelihood. Just about everyone judges you, assumes it's your fault, and just about NO ONE lifts a finger to help you. I see my future now and it is destitution. Really sad, but true.
    Perhaps it's different in England but then you'll never know, will you Ms. McTaggart? Because you are very wealthy? Do you volunteer to help others for free?
    I've been studying positive thinking and listening to motivational speakers for years now and one thing I've noticed is that they ALL charge massive rates for their services. You talk about not being greedy, not needing money, about money not buying happiness, etc., but when it comes right down to it you'll charge huge rates to those who come to you for help. I can't afford to attend any of your seminars or workshops or those of Wayne Dyer, Tony Robbins, etc.
    In fact, I was excited when many of my positive thinking, motivational heroes were speaking at a convention center in my city and I just happened to have a temp job next door to their seminar. I walked over to their location and with wide eyes and enthusiasm began to say, "Hey, I'm a great fan, have read their books, would really like to hear these guys speak, etc." when I was interrupted by glares and interrogation. The fee to get in was high and I couldn't afford to get in. The staff at the door wouldn't even talk to me, gave me dirty looks. I got the impression I wasn't well-dressed enough to get in. They nervously stood by the door to prevent me from getting in as they saw my enthusiasm and were afraid I might sneak in to listen to these "I'm not greedy 'cause money can't buy happiness motivational, law of attraction, postive thinking, trusting in the universe" speakers speak.
    I guess they trust in the universe and the laws of attraction but only as long as they keep people like me (poor people) as far away from themselves as possible.
    Yeah, it's easy to talk about all this positive thinking stuff when you've got a nice house, nice car, plenty of really good food to eat and can afford to live wherever you want and be with whomever you want.
    But the reality is that none of you people really practice what you preach.
    Sorry, but what you're saying is insulting to those of us who are genuinely struggling in these tough economic times. Lynne McTaggart, you lack empathy and compassion for those who are less fortunate than you.
    Shame on you.

  26. The biggest issue I have with my two oldest children is their constant need to impress others around them. All, or most other problems that occur seem to stem from this very need.
    However it is the same everywhere you go, and it should not come as a surprise to see it. Boys feel inferior because sport champions are used as advertising slogans, and girls see what they deem as perfect models of what a woman should look like on the front cover of a magazine.
    I am forever telling them you are wonderful the way you are

  27. To look at the differences in people, whether these are gifts, money, religion or whatever, seems to be more the style we are broughtup in than to look at what we have in common. Envy and war ar the result. To see differences as a challenge and to learn from them is more satisfying and enhances your life, that is my experience. Thanks Mrs. Mc Taggert for bringing up this issue which lies at the bottom of much unhappiness. Each and everybodies life is confronted with a choice between competition or harmony. Between creating dissatifaction and happiness in whatever may happen in this particular life.

  28. These are just the latest in a long line of studies which tend to say more-or-less the same thing: money may not buy happiness, but poverty can make you miserable. Specifically, the economic factors that contribute positively to happiness are economic security (since it reduces worry) and equality (since it reduces jealousy and feelings of inferiority). So basically you want to live in a wealthy, social democratic country, or a tribe of hunter-gatherers.

  29. How I sympathise with Outside The Box!
    I remember a time when I was pretty poor, a single mum & doing crappy jobs to keep it all together; having this conversation with my best friend, who was working hard in a responsible, demanding job, and expressing the feeling that she didn't always see the point in going on. Suddenly, I saw the difference between us! "You think this is all there is, don't you?" I exclaimed; "You really think this misery is all there is!".
    She was furious with me when she realised that I actually had some sort of spiritual life which gave me strength and optimism, calling me pathetic. How she resented this thing which I had somehow acquired during my years of deprivation. I think maybe I was given it when I really needed it, and had nothing -really,
    nothing - else to bring me hope. She'd been through some really hard times too, and had hoped that the prestige and income of a career would make her happier. It seemed at that time to be just making her more tired and worried.
    Good luck, OTB. I wish you good friends and good loving, but a second-hand car would be just great, wouldn't it?

  30. I am motivated to respond to Outside the Box. And just to let you know where I am coming from: I came from a poor upbringing, that did not stop me being happy just the same. And my life path has given me plenty of reason for unhappiness, it I would let it. I have been married 3 times, with all its associated pain and have given all my assets and money to the other partners. I have tried to start a business which was successful for four years but now the global situation has decimated it and I am barely making a living. I had machinery which has been repossessed, a car which has been repossessed, other assets being taken, on the edge of bankruptcy and in the process of (another) separation. Plenty of reason, me thinks, to be unhappy. But am I? Certainly not. I am a very happy and optimistic person. Sure, things can get me down sometimes, we wouldn't be human if it didn't. But think about this, Outside the Box: if you put two people in a cellar with just a single window, some people see the mud and others see the sky. It is up to you what you think. And from the way you express yourself, I get the impression that you carry a lot of resentment - and that is destroying you - and it shows in your attitude and the way you present yourself to others - and that is why they are avoiding you, no other reason. I have a mantra - peace on earth begins with me. You are the only person who can change you for the better. You and I are powerless over other people, places and events. I hope this helps you, but if you have a closed mind as well, then of course it won't. Most people on this site chose to ignore your comments. Perhaps they were wiser than me. I wish you a better future.

  31. Hello, again, Peace, I also felt somewhat negative reading outside the box. Actually what I really mean is I thought about where your head is right now, and all I really want to do is let you know that I am sending you, much heartfelt love because I was ready to jump all over you for not getting it, but Ive got to tell you, Thank you for your honesty, and for sharing. That's pretty brave. I will be thinking of you and hoping that you just take a moment to care for yourself and keep sharing. It helps me to be brave. much care and peace to everyone.

  32. Reads to me like people are green with envy, they need to kill themselves.
    Makes me wonder what low self esteem they have to feel like they are worth less because they lack in material possesions.
    Seems ridiculous to me. Now. I also used to feel jealous about other people's stuff till I realised that there is enough for me t0o. All I have to do is reach out for it. Sure it didn't happen just by wishing but by changing my mindset and blessing those that do have, I gradually improved my lot in life too.
    But I have no desire to compete with any one. I always choose the stuff which appeals to me.

  33. How nice to be able to say "I am satisfied." To get beyond the "toys" and everyday wants, and recognize and be grateful for the gifts that we each have: to see, to hear, to love, to give,and to be a friend.

  34. More scientific evidence that it is best to abandon the money-based economy that relies on competition and self-serving profit, and replace it with a resource-based economy. In a resource-based economy the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual needs of people are met, fostering the development of relationships and community that leads to true health, happiness, and well being (http://www.metaphysics-for-life.com/mind-on-money.html)

  35. Exactly. The monetary based structure of the majority of this planet is antiquated, limited, dysfunctional and primitive. It's a reflection of how infantile our species is with respect to our evolution. And what's holding it together, even when it obviously doesn't work, is our egoic drive to define ourselves by how much more we than others, or, on the opposite end, to be caught up as victims because we have less than others: our need to compare. The reason most on this planet have a difficult time seeing the madness in all this is because we're "familiar" with this way of being. It's so seductive. And again; we identify who we are by either mental extreme. Change is frightening and scary for egoic entities. But it only takes a small group of us to start a global shift to a resource based economy. (http://www.thevenusproject.com/getInvolved.html). Check it out. Be well.

  36. I chose a life of creativity rather than a career and sometimes have had a difficult time financially. Most of my oldest friends working as lawyers or executives have incomes that are probably five times mine but I feel no envy. I know that we have simply made different choices and they work very hard for their money at jobs that I would hate to do.

  37. Just a point of information - There is only one character on Wisteria Lane (Gabi) who constantly compares herself materially with others (and is constantly lampooned for it). Materialism went out of fashion in American soaps some time in the '80s, I think.

  38. This is to some of those who commented on "Outside the box"'s sad statement. At the start this person stated clearly that he/she has serious health problems and is in constant pain.
    While it appears well intended to advise someone "to whistle a happy tune, see things from the sunny side of the street and make lemonade"...; when a person is ill and in pain the needs shift. And being unwell colors your perceptions and outlook. Which is very understandable.
    As a health care professional I feel the need to remind those who appeared to be critical that it is probably very difficult for this person to continue to accept it all with a saintly smile, for the benefit of those like Bruitzman (one wonders why women keep running away from him), and this is not a realistic expectation.
    Where is the love, the tolerance, the compassion?
    You have my loving thoughts "Outside the box" and best wishes.
    ☯Namasté☯ 

  39. I felt compelled to make a comment also regarding "outside the box." I feel for you, I've never been in the same exact situation as you, but I have felt despair, depression and discouragement to the point that I felt leaving this plain of existence was a better alternative. And I can see why you are thinking the way you are about the people who have go around giving their seminars and asking for big bucks. Even though I do earn a good income, I don't attend these pricey seminars because they are! I pray that you are healed completely and that you are blessed beyond measure!

Why wait any longer when you’ve already been waiting your entire life?

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