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July 22, 2022
The REALationship With Your Spouse

In This Episode

Whether you are married, dating or engaged, relationships take work! The ladies of Imani State of mind are taking a deeper look into how your relationship with your spouse plays a role on your mind for better or for worse.

We would love to hear from you! Please email us at AskDrImani@crooked.com with all your questions and comments!

 

TRANSCRIPT

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Welcome to Imani State of Mind, a podcast about mental health, culture, politics and whatever else I think you need to know. I’m Dr. Imani Walker, and you may know me from Married to Medicine, Los Angeles or my YouTube series, Mother and Daughter. I’m a working psychiatrist in the city of Los Angeles, but most importantly, I’m a mother and a Black woman living in America. The current state of the world can be scary, triggering or even disappointing. And I know we’re all searching for ways to protect our mental health during these times. So I want this show to be the answers, mental break, and healing you are looking for as you navigate your own mental health journey. So listen, I don’t want you to think this is one of those shows where, as a trained professional, I’m talking at you. I have my issues, too. So we’re all in this together. Get ready to get the tools you need to get your mind right. And because everything in life is more fun with a partner. I want to introduce you to my co-host and co-pilot on the podcast, Megan Thomas. What’s up Meg?

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Hey, girl. Hey. How you doing? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Hey! I’m good. I mean, you know, I was just telling you, like, today is just kind of irritating, but, I mean, overall, like, it’s about to be summertime, so I’m in a good mood. How are you doing? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I’m doing good girl. Okay. I’m just my child. My brand new baby is sleeping six hours a night. Give me– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Nice. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –Six hours straight. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Nice. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I’ll take it okay. The world is a great place, I’ll take it. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. Exactly. How old? How old is she now? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: She is almost eight weeks. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Oh, wow. 6 hours. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yes. Girl, I was like, thank you, Jesus. Because my first child did not do this. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Wow. Look at you. Look at her. Good for you guys. I’m happy for you. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Girl I’m feeling good. I’m out here in these streets. That’s how good I feel okay? [laughter] In my mind I’m in the streets but I’m not.

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. Exactly. Yeah, me too. In my mind, I’m like, Oh, my God, summer’s coming. What are we going to do? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yes! We outside, we–

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Gonna stay in the house like I always am in the house. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Like, where are you going? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Girl. Oh. It’s 90 degrees out. Um. No, we inside. We’re not outside. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yes. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: In my head we outside. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I’m super inside the house. Have you quick question, have you had COVID? Did you get COVID yet? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yes, ma’am, I did. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah see I have not. I haven’t. And I keep reading these articles like, well, you know, if it’s summertime, so, you know, you going to get COVID again. I’m like, you gonna get covid again, don’t put that on me. [laughter] I have not had COVID and I’m fine with that. Like, I don’t want none of that. So, you know, y’all want to, you know, keep catching covid, do that. I don’t I’m not about that life. I don’t, I that’s not my lifestyle. I’m not about that. So.

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right. I know. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Okay. Well stay inside there girl. I’ve been well– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –Actually, I got it from my child, you know, like like little kids. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Younger kids. They have all the germs. And if you’re a mom, you catch every germ your kid has. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: My son got Covid from school and I got it from him, so. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, my son hasn’t. He hasn’t had it either. Yeah, like I haven’t. I haven’t had it. Nobody in my house has had it, so. Yeah, I’m good. I’m just going to be in my usual hermetic self and to stay in the house. So. So um. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Do it girl, because it ain’t fun. It is not fun. I’ll tell you.

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. I mean, it’s not fun to be sick and it’s also not fun to deal with somebody who gets on your nerves. And it’s–

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Worse when you’re dealing with somebody that you’re in a relationship with who gets on your nerves. And I think that’s kind of why, as I read through the recap of today, like what we were going to be discussing, like why I was just getting more and more irritated because we’re going to be talking, so on this show, we’re going to be talking about relationships, REALationships with our spouses um or significant others. And um some of the some of the topics that we’ll be touching upon today um are really important ones. But I guess more importantly to this part of the conversation, it was just thinking about people who get on my nerves was getting on my nerves. So so that’s kind of wild. I’m a little aggravated today um, but, you know, but, but, but in any case, um hopefully hopefully you are not irritated uh running through the reading through the rundown today. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I was girl. I was like oh, I’m ready for this now. This is for every every narcissist gaslighter– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Girl. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: That has ever crossed my path. This is for you. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, I’m over it. I’m just like, get. I’m like, you know what? I don’t have time for this, even though I’m not even dealing with that right now. Thank God. Like my– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Amen. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: My partner’s awesome, but um. But, yeah, I was just like, you know what? You know what, Brian? [laughter] Actually, I’m not gonna talk about–

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Not his name– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Like I made that name up. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Girl you can’t be calling his name. [laughing]

 

Dr. Imani Walker: No, no, no. I made that name up. I made that name up. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I was about to say. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Completely. No, no, no. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I was oh lord Brian, she talking about you today boy. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: No no no, not at all. No. I totally made that up. I totally made that up. So so in any case, let’s, you know what, let’s get this mental party started. [music break] Let’s kick the show off with a fun segment we like to call, ask Dr. Imani anything. This is the moment in the show we get to connect with you, and you can literally ask me anything. Tell us what’s on your mind, and we will give you our solicited and unsolicited advice. For those of you who are new to the crew. Let me tell you how to get in touch with us. Submit your questions around mental health, life, or any problems preventing you from achieving a healthy mindset. To our email address, hello@ImaniStateofMind.com. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And since we love options on this show, you can also text or leave us a voicemail at 818-252-9462. Aight now that we got all of that out the way, let’s get into this letter. It comes from Monica, and this is what she had to say. Doctor Imani, help! I have been with my husband for 11 years, of which seven of those we’ve been married. I’ve recently started thinking he is a pathological liar and a narcissist. When we were dating, he cheated on me a few times and swore he would never do it again. For a while he had me thinking I was the problem or the crazy one. He gave me the sob stories of not having good examples growing up and he wanted to change. I fell for his sob stories and we went to therapy for two years before he proposed to me. I thought the therapy was working and he turned over a new leaf, so I agreed to marry him. Most days I can’t remember why I married him because he is constantly telling me he is not attracted to me and never was. I am starting to think I just have a fear of being alone because why am I still here? Well, fast forward to the pandemic. We had to move in with my parents and things began to take a turn for the worse. We argued every day and then he would storm out and not come home for hours. I started to suspect he was cheating again, so I looked through his phone and social media and I was right. I was livid and kicked him out of my parents house and asked for a divorce. While we were separated. He did all the smooth talking and actions to convince me to give him a second chance because he didn’t want our daughter to grow up in a broken or blended family like he did. So yet again, I gave him another chance. Lately his phone has been ringing late at night and I’m losing trust and gaining suspicions again. I am mentally exhausted from this marriage, yet I can’t seem to call it quits. What’s wrong with me? Any advice you can give me to help me get off this toxic, emotional roller coaster would be greatly appreciated. Mmm. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Okay, girl, run. Just go, go, go. Okay. Like, this is the the first of all, thank you, Monica, for your letter. It was it was very well-written. Grammar was great. I’m a grammar nerd, you know? I know. Like, I’m super like, I’m very much a stickler for that. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right, same. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: But I guess I’m just I’m also saying that because when I write things, especially if I’m like typing something out or like writing it out, like it what you’re writing, like the physical act of writing it, it kind of helps what you are. It kind of helps like, like the content that you’re actually getting out to sink in. And so I’m just wondering, Monica, if after you wrote this letter and probably read it before you sent it, if you kind of realized, like the answer to your own question, you know what I mean? Like– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Let’s. Because because like legit, let’s just go through it. You’ve been with your husband for 11 years. You’ve been married for seven. You believe he’s a pathological liar and a narcissist. Okay, so pause. So like the person I’m with, I know he’s not a pathological liar or a narcissist. Megan, I’m sure you know your, your man is not a pathological liar and a narcissist, if that’s the second sentence of your letter. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Like, I mean, I feel you, like you want us to get, you know, give our input, but you really have your answer like– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Like this is this is wild. He went to therapy, okay? And then like that–

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: No they did, they did therapy together for two years. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. We went to therapy and then, you know, the pandemic happened and then he would storm out and not come home. And then you kicked him out and now he back. But like his phone is ringing late at night and then you got proof of it. Like, I guess what I’m wondering, Megan, is, you know, like you said, like you would ask what’s wrong with you? And not really what’s wrong with you, but did you grow up, Monica, with someone gaslighting you? Like, did you grow up with someone consistently and perpetually like deceiving you because this is– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Mhm. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Really evidence of you being okay with it because it’s something that you’ve accepted for the past 11 years. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: And for. And when I said initially, like Girl run, like, I was halfway joking, but really I was saying, you need to leave this person and you need therapy like you–

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Need to go to therapy yesterday because this really screams and speaks to that you like the fact that you’ve had some sort of like emotional trauma in your in your life. And um this is someone who legitimately does not respect you. Your– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Your husband’s your husband’s notion that, oh, I don’t want. You said um he didn’t want our daughter to grow up in a broken or blended family like he did. Let me tell you something. I grew up in a blended family, and it was great. It was great. Um. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: My my biological dad and my mom split when I was about eight. And then my mom met my uh my dad, my stepdad, let’s say now when I was 11. And I got to gain a like a whole family. My grandfather, my my step dad’s father was one of 20. So I got to gain this whole huge extended family and it was really, really awesome. So I’m just saying that you like like on the low on the low side, you know, you could always tell your daughter like, yo, you’ll get like two Christmases and two birthdays. But–[laughter]

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right.

 

Dr. Imani Walker: But you know what I’m saying? But on like, you know, on the on the more and more positive side, you know, you can just tell your daughter, like, listen, like your daughter is going to emulate you and she’s– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Going to see how you have been treated and and how you treat yourself and how you respect yourself and how you allow other people to treat you. And– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –She’s going to absorb all of that. This is nonsense. Like this relationship that you are in is just it is foolishness. You need to leave this man and you need to like, you know, whatever it takes, do not go back to him. Do not get into another relationship until you have really healed yourself fully, because– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: It’s going to be very easy for you to look for similar traits in other men or other people that– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: That part. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –you wish to be in relationships with. Like I’m just saying, girl, go. [laughter] Like like you’re like your whole relationship, I’m sorry to say, is one big delusion. And you need to you need to just dead this and just, you know, like, don’t, don’t, don’t, don’t beat yourself up. Just be like, you know what I learned and now I’m going to go live the rest of my life. So, my bad Megan, I talked so much. If there’s anything you want to add. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: No, no that’s. I’m over here cosigning because I’m like, all this is like exactly what I’m thinking. You know? She says one thing that stuck out to me. She’s like, I have a fear, do a, uh she’s starting to think that she has a fear of being alone. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Mmm. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: So why am I still here? So I think that’s a rhetorical question. Like she ask herself– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –Why am I still here? I you. She definitely. Monica, you gotta work through the that fear of being alone because that’s real and it’s just going to keep repeating itself until you figure out why do I allow this to happen to me? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Exactly. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Why am I allowing this pattern over and over? Because the thing about it is, this man had already showed you, he is a cheater. He is a liar. He is a narcissist. That is not changing. So– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: The question you need to now ask yourself is, am I okay being married to a man that lies to me constantly? Gaslights me, cheats on me, treats me like this? Or am I not okay with it? Because if you’re okay with it, then stay with him. And obviously you’re not okay with him doing this so leave, that’s it. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: That’s your two choices. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Am I okay with it? Stay. I’m not okay with it. Leave. Now I think you know, it’s hard to it’s what is that saying. Like it’s better the devil that you’re dealing with is better than the devil you don’t know. But like in this instance, you don’t know what’s on the other side. And I can almost guarantee you it’s going to be beautiful compared to what you at now, okay? You’re going to be a lot happier. Your daughter is going to have a better health, happy, healthier mother, because she’s going to do what you do. She’s going to think that it’s okay for a man to gaslight her, to treat her like that, because you are delusional if you think your daughter does not know that– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –There’s issues with you and her father. So she’s going to be like, okay, well, I love my father because little girls love their dads. Like I love my dad. Like he’s a, you know, he did all this stuff to my mom. But he’s like, he loves me because it seems like he loves your daughter. You know, he say he don’t you know, he doesn’t want this rocky, you know, family dynamic for her. So it seems like he has some kind of love for your daughter. So that means they probably have a decent relationship, which means she’s going to end up with a man like him because you said it was okay. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Exactly. And–

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And then that’s that should be enough to make you be like, oh, I got to go. I got to go. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Exactly. Now, I was sitting here thinking to myself, okay, I’ve dated a narcissist once. This was back in my twenties. It was just a mess. I was married to someone who definitely was a narcissist and had narcissistic traits, um basically someone who would, yes, do like do nice things and do things that I needed to be done. But a lot of that was purely driven by his own need for gain. Right. Um and then when I think about even my biological father, like you said, Megan, I loved my dad. I loved my dad. I do. But I also can recognize the fact that just a lot of the stuff that my biological father did was completely narcissistic, like– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Number one, why, dad? Why would you take me with you to go do drugs? That’s crazy. Okay. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Like, that’s that’s completely that’s insanity. Number two, why would you take me with you when you were cheating on my mom? Number three. And most importantly, why would you ask me to keep your secret of you cheating on my mom with someone else? So, like, I put it to you like this, Monica, I know that, you know, we’re telling you, like, leave him, leave him like he’s wack. I know a lot of this has to, you know some of this well not some of it. A lot of this has to do with the fact that you’ve known this man for a long time. You may be feeling like, oh, my God, I devoted so much time. Like, you know, if I devoted all this time and I don’t have anything to show for it, I’m playing myself and or this is someone who, like, I know his past and like, he was hurt and these things happen to him. Listen, when you have a child, all of that, like, flies out the window. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yup. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: All that is gone. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: A hundred percent. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I don’t care if you were raised in the pits of hell. Okay. When we have a child together and you want to act a whole God damn fool. Guess what? You’re out of here. Like, I’m not like, I’m not doing this. And and what’s killing me Megan is the fact that y’all both went to therapy. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Like she was there. There was. And there was an outside party. I’m like, was he just, you know, talking shit? Was he just, like, making up things just to say to make, you know, I’m saying to get what he wanted, which– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Basically. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Really is a classic sign of being a narcissist. So, Monica, I don’t want for you to feel like, oh, I wasted time and I played myself in this, that and the third because I’ve been there a couple times, probably three times in my life. But what you have to realize is that you you learn from those experiences and– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Mm hmm. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: You also learn your self-worth when you heal from those experiences. And you need to really begin this process of healing not just for you, but for your daughter. Because I guarantee you that if you don’t begin this process sooner rather than later, your daughter is going to bring somebody. I mean, I’m saying your daughter’s going to bring somebody home that is going to be a carbon copy of her father. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: So, you know, so please get some help. We wish you luck and, you know what, let us know, like like write in. Leave us a voicemail. Let us know, you know, how you’re doing, because I know how difficult this can be and I know how easy it can be to be manipulated by somebody who you you love, like you love this person. But love, I mean, as weird as it sounds on the relationship show, love, love is not everything like you could love me but do– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: It ain’t enough boo. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: It’s not. But do you respect me like you know? Do you– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Do you treat me like a human being? And if you can’t do that then you then you got to go. You got to go. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: So thank you, Monica, for submitting your question. And I hope you begin to put your feelings first and find the peace of mind you deserve out of a relationship. Monica’s letter is a great segue into today’s topic as we continue to seek out the REALationships that shape who we are, how we think and affect our mental health. The next relationship I want to examine is the one with our significant other. So that’s what Meg and I are going to talk about today. What does your dynamic with your spouse say about you? Hold that thought, because we’re diving in right after the break. 

 

[AD BREAK] 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Welcome back. This month is all about being real. We’re taking a deeper look into how our relationships shape our mental states. I’m hoping with this series, we all get real with ourselves to create self-awareness, evaluate the relationships we’ve built or the ones we need to restructure. The next topic of the REALationships is all about the relationships we have with our spouse. Whether you are married, dating or engaged. Relationships take work. Amen. Listen. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Mmm. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Oh, my God. You know how you be you see people and you like. Oh, my God. Your um. Your. Your relationship is so perfect. And they’re like, Yeah, ha ha. You know, like, it looks great, but, you know, it takes a lot of work. And you’re like, ha ha, whatever people. And then you just skip off into the sunset and you don’t really–

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: [laughing] like like digest what they said that that shit is real because oh man, I will just start really quickly with myself. So I got divorced during the pandemic and I also started a relationship during the pandemic. And–

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Wait, how long were you married? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I was married for I think I was married for six years. I legit– like this. That sounds terrible. I literally don’t remember. [laughter] Like, I don’t. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Dang. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I don’t like it’s like I kind of, you know why? Like this like like real talk it’s because for that entire time, I was depressed. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Okay. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: And so, like, my, my ability to kind of remember stuff is a little hazy. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Mm okay. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: So I’m like. Yeah, like, we were together for 11– yeah yeah yeah and we married after five years, so we were married for six. But let me tell you something. You want to you want to know the like the petty shit I did. I broke up with him on our anniversary. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Wait, like the divorce breakup? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Mm Hmm. I was like, Don’t play with me. You know what, what today is. I’m not fucking what you buy. [gasp] Yeah, like, [laughter] for real. Right. I was like. I was like. I was like, you are raggedy and I’m not doing this shit no more. And you thought I was gonna call you and say something else, haha stupid. Um. We. This ain’t gonna work no more. So bye. Yup. And I fit that shit into my day. I was hiking, I was doing my morning hike and I was like, yeah, hold on. Oh, okay. So anyway, yes. So, yeah, today’s an important day. I just want to tell you that I’m not fucking with you know more and um yeah, I just. I just want to let you know and it’s cool. Like, you know, you love me and I love you, but you are not in love with me, and it’s fine. So just admit it and admit that this is stupid. So because I’m I’m not doing this no more and I’ll let you know, you know, about the divorce paperwork and all that shit. And I was like, alright then bye. Like I, like I’m the kind of person like when I’m done with a relationship I like it’s like I just wake up one day and I’m like, nope. Mm mm. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right, right, right. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: No, I’m like, I don’t even know why I fucked with you in the first place like it did um [laughter] like, I just like it’s like I can’t, like if it’s like I have to throw this person up out of my life like that. Like that’s how I feel. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Like I’m just, like, ughhh out of here. [laughing]

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right. And but then before that, it’s always like, okay, like because obviously that wasn’t the first problem y’all had. That was like the end of the culmination of multiple problems. And it’s like, okay, you finally get to a point where you like, I’m done, I’m done. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I’m done. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, yup. Every time I’m just like, I just I it’s like I always wake up and I’m like, hell no. Uh uh. I’m like, you are raggedy, get out of here. So um. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: What was his response, by the way, when you did that? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Girl. Okay, so remember I was telling you how I was like, I’ve now concluded this person was a narcissist. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: His first response was, you know, like like he didn’t even fight for it. And I wasn’t. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Okay. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I mean, and that wasn’t that wasn’t necessary for like, I wasn’t like, oh, if he fights for it, then I’ll take him back. Like, I was done. But–

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: There was no like, why girl like, oh, you know, I love you. It was, it was like, well, yeah, you right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Not [?]. [laughing]

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I was like, Oh, my God. I was like, I am so glad that I’m getting my cardio on because I’d be so mad if I would have taken time out and, like, had a seat and like, had a conversation with this person. Like, you know what I’m saying? Like, I was like, I’m– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Glad that I’m multitasking because if I would have just been doing nothing and set aside time for this person, I would have been mad at myself because he’s not worth it. But he so he was like, well, yeah, you right. And then he started talking, like I said something I don’t remember. And then he started talking about like the materialistic things, the material things that he wouldn’t have any longer. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: What? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, because we wouldn’t be together. And I was like, Oh, okay. I was like, That’s cool. Like, it literally like this conversation legit took ten minutes? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Oh, wow. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: So it’s been over? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. Yeah, I was like. I was like, bye I’m not doing this shit no more like you wack. So. So, yeah, it was um. It was quick and it was dirty. And, like, it was. It was funny because, like, I started off on that hike like with somebody. And then when I ended, I was like, yay! I was like, I did it. I completed my hike and I broke up with my husband. Now, what? [laughter] I’m like can’t nobody tell me shit today. Like I’m killing it today I’m crushing it. Um. But yeah, that was– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: This is the type of energy we need. We all need this energy. Okay.

 

Dr. Imani Walker: What? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: When it’s time to go, when somebody mistreats you, it is time to go. You got to go. I loved it. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: No you got to go. You got to go. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I love it. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I’m like, I’m not doing this. Like you. I’m like, you are stupid. And honestly, I mean, I wasn’t gonna, I wasn’t going to beat myself up over it. But I was just like I was like, nah, this is dumb. So my friends were like, yo, like, you know, how are you? And, you know, like, like that type of um, you know, those type of voices. And I was like, I don’t even know why you sound like that. Like, I’m about to go out later, I’m about to go out. I took myself out to eat. I was like, I’m about to take myself– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I love it. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Out to an expensive Japanese dinner and celebrate my, you know, my freedom. So once that was over, I would say that was November, by March, which was pretty much when the pandemic started. I started a relationship with the person I’m with now and which which does sound kind of quick. I mean, I do move on pretty quickly, but this is somebody that I actually have known since we just celebrated, like our anniversary of our first date. We we our first date was in uh June 1st, 2006. Um. So we’ve known each other– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Aw. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: For sixteen years. And we met on MySpace. We met on MySpace. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: [indistinct] Look at that, mySpace love circling back. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I know. So we we we always kept in contact. He got married. I got married. You know, we had kids. He had a daughter, I had a son. Yeah, we’ve we’ve known each other all this time. And that being said. Right, so we were like, Oh, we gonna be together? Like, this is great. Like, we, like, we were just kind of like, missed connections. Like– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –I’d be I wouldn’t be in a relationship, but he’d be married and vice versa, or you know, something like that. And so we were like, Yeah, okay, we’re going to like be together. And it’s and it just so happened that um the pandemic had started. And let me tell you, first of all, he’s a Virgo, okay? So I’m not saying anything bad about Virgos. I love Virgos. Nobody else seems to really love them um as much as I do. But I’m a Capricorn and I’m really anal and kind of like uh [?] I’m kind of fast forwarding to our last segment. I am kind of like [?] And then I’m very anally retentive and OCD. Um. But yeah, he is a Virgo and when I tell you, they feel like they need to be right all the time. Listen, so we we went to therapy. That’s the first person I ever went to therapy with. And um– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Nice. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –It was it was really like it was really helpful. And and one of the things that that I took away from being in therapy with my partner now is that there are things that, like, I will get really nit picky about something and so will he. And so when we were in the middle of therapy and we would be like about to start arguing, she was like, okay, but the thing about it is like she would bring it back to the topic at hand, right? Because I’ll start like, that’s grammatically incorrect. You were wrong when you said that. And that’s why your whole conve–, that’s how why your whole arguments wrong and that’s why I’m not even having this conversation with you no more. So whatever I win and she was like, okay, you know what? Y’all are like? She was like, y’all are like children. I was like, I’m really not like a child. He’s like a child. So you need to tell him. Like, it was like, we just both he’s petty, but I’m, he’s petty like, I’m, I’m petty, but he’s pettier. And he will agree with that. All right. He’s not here, but he, he would agree with that. Um. But yeah, we went to therapy and um you know, not that like we recently got in to like a, like an argument um that just like lasted like all day. And the next day I was like, yo, I think we really need to go to therapy. And I wasn’t bringing it up as a threat. But I think just the simple fact that we’ve gone to therapy and the fact that I was like, yo, I think maybe we need to go back and discuss this. It really forced us to like stop and like, okay, what is the issue like– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Like before we get into the like, you know, the, like the weeds of the issue, like I don’t like how you said it or that’s factually incorrect. Like, what is it like? What is, what is the actual issue? And– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –That that’s really helped us to kind of um to just stay, you know, stay on topic because– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –We really can just be like, nope, no, that came out in 1992 and that’s why you’re wrong. And that’s why everything you said is wrong. And I’m not talking to you now and like it is girl it’s, we just but but at the same time, like, you know, then the other like, we’re just very we’re just very loving and really silly. And we love being with each other, but we’re just like, you know, we just get really catty. But but that but that being said though that being said– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: But that but that’s no you know what, though? Because no relationship is perfect. Right. There’s always going to be some level of, you know, what you somebody else might say that’s dysfunction. Whereas for you, it’s like okay. This is just kind of how we argue or disagree, but we always, the key is to always find your way back to the love. Right? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: It is, yeah. And we do. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: That. Yeah. And that’s and that’s all that matters. And I think it took me a while to learn that. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. Have you guys, how long how long have you been with your partner? Oh, I’m sorry your fiancee. Because y’all are engaged, right? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yes, so we’ve been engaged for a [?] years and– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Okay. [laughing]

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –A lot of that. And honestly, you know, I have some of the the comedians at All Def will make fun of me and be like, that’s why that man don’t want to marry you. And I was like, which y’all don’t understand, men. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Mm hmm. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Is that sometimes it’s the woman who does not necessarily want to get married. In our situation, it’s probably a little bit more of me that’s taken so like I because, you know, most women don’t drag their feet when it comes to getting married. They like, we engaged. Okay, let me set the date. Let me get the dress so we, I have never really been like that with him. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Me neither. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Because– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Not with him obviously, but I haven’t. I like yeah. I haven’t been like that with him either. [laughing]

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: But you know what? And I thought I was like that and then I met him and then our relationship moved so fast because we’ve been together for five years, we’ve been engaged for four. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Mm hm. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: We had our son is three and now we have a newborn. So it’s like life happened to us very, very quickly. I didn’t get that time to, you know, like you and your current partner have known each other forever. I literally– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –Knew him seven months bef– seven months long distance before we got pregnant with our son. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Oh wow. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: So then everything got escalated. So now the regular problems that you have in a relationship are magnified because now we have a child. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Girl. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Like we didn’t have the getting to know phase and then the– it was all at the same time. So it– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –There was just a lot of mess at the beginning. A lot of I would say for me, a lot of growth because I had to deal with now like I’m going to coparent with this person. But the truth is, we literally met like a year ago by the time we had our son. So I was like, What am I like there’s a lot of things I don’t like about you. There’s a lot of things that I love about you, and there’s a lot of things that I don’t know about you. And so all of that was just melded together, trying to learn to be a parent, trying to learn him, trying to learn the dynamic of our relationship that was long distance. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Mind you, for the first two years. So it was just like, what is going on here? So there was just a lot of stuff that happened um a lot st– and then for me, traditionally I’ve been a person that is not really in relationships and when I am in one, it’s like six months long. Because then– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I just be like ahhh. This ain’t working I got to go. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, well, how did you guys how did you guys meet? Like, did you meet on social media? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: No, actually. Um. So I lived in L.A. at the time and he lived in Miami and I went to Miami um for work. Essentially, I was there for a week and we met at a bar. And like it was a it’s a cute little story because I was like, Oh, I ain’t trying to like I’m not trying to impress nobody here okay so this man comes to me– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: In Miami? Hell no.

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yes girl. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: No. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: That’s why exactly, I was like, I don’t live here either. No. So he came to the bar. He was like, you know, I was at the bar about to buy drinks for me and my two friends, and then he was like, ooh, can I get you a drink? I said can you get me and my two friends a drink? Cause I got to pay for their drinks. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Hell yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Can you get three drinks? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: He was like, Oh, yeah. I was like, Oh, cool, you’re cool. Okay. So then we started talking and um I was just giving him the blues okay because I was like, I don’t know you. You could be a serial killer. Do you have a job? Like, what do you do? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And so, you know, and then we exchanged numbers, but usually [clears throat] I give men like my real phone number, except the last digit is wrong. [laughter] So in case I ever run into you again and you’re like, hey. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I can just be like, Oh, you wrote my number down wrong. That’s a little game for y’all. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Because that actually happened to me before I came across the dude like again and he was just like, you gave me a fake number. No I didn’t.

 

Dr. Imani Walker: No, I didn’t. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: So right. Right. But this just a beautiful, lovely accident because I ended up giving him my right number– [laughter] 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Okay! 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –but I meant to give him the wrong– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –Number. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: See. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: The wrong number. And then he called me that next day and was just like, Hey, do you want to do like dinner while you’re here? And I was like, oooh, I don’t even have time. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And then he was like, okay, what about lunch. And I was like, mmm don’t have time for that either. He’s like, what about breakfast. And I was like, you know what? You don’t, you don’t, I don’t think you work. So breakfast at like 10– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Uhhh. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Cause he said he had his own business and I was like– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Girl no. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –Everybody got they own business.

 

Dr. Imani Walker: That’s like, oh– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Air quotes.

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –I’m a producer. Like– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right! 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Like Mm okay. Well, why don’t you produce your way out of my face.

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And then he was like I have my own little tech business. So I was like, okay, Laurence on the couch making an app. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Okay, the gram. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: [laughing] Right? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Mm mm. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: So I was like, mmm you ain’t got no job. And then come to find out he did have a job. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Okay. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: You know. And then, you know, I went to breakfast with him and the rest is history. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Um. So but then that began our long distance relationship. So he was in Miami, I was in L.A. He would fly to L.A. every month because he he has a tech job so he just needs Internet to work. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: So he would come in to L.A. and that’s basically what we did for the first two years of our relationship, and then our son was born and it was just kind of like, okay, well we got to figure out what we’re going to do. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, that’s so. Because that’s a lot. Because that means that the I mean, I it sounds like a good majority if if half if not the majority of your relationship has been during the pandemic. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yes. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: And that I’ll tell you right now, I am so glad that I split up with my ex-husband. For how many months was it? [whispering] November. Five months before the pandemic started because I would be in jail. Like I would– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Ooo yes. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I would I would have killed him by now like there’s no way. Like, I would have, like, cause, cause for real. Like, it’s one thing, like, I would work all day and then I would come home. I would see him not even that much. And so if we were both stuck in the house. There’s no way. There is no– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yes. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Way. There’s no– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Girl it almost broke us. So I will I can 100% cosign on that because I will tell you, that was because we finally moved in together in the same house in Atlanta in 2019, right– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –Before the pandemic. Now, let me tell you what the dynamic was. So this was now our first time living together. You know, before it was like, okay, I live in L.A. You come here, we have like, it’s really my place, but you’re here all the time, so it’s kind of our place. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: So now we both moved to a new city together first time. So that’s a whole dynamic in itself. Like maybe eight months after we moved in together, you know, the pandemic started in March 2020. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: His mother, two children, his two adult children moved in like a week or two before the pandemic started. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Oh, no. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: So now we have a whole like now we’re trying to get along. Plus, we got your mama here, your adult kids here, like, you know. So it was just thank God for the patience that I already had because it– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Hooo no. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –You know, when I told people about our situation, they was like, what? I was like, look, I prayed about it and I’m actually not as bad as I thought I was going to be. But that, again, that still adds another layer of– [laughing] 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I’m sorry. Can’t nobody whose listening to this see my eyeballs right now, but I’m like, what? [laughter] Like, my eyes are so wide. I’m like, I just like [laughing] I just I can’t I can’t, like, I can’t even imagine. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Girl. It was a lot.

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Even with I mean, even though I mean and I know, like, I know the houses in Atlanta are way bigger than they are here, but that’s a lot. And you had a little baby. I mean. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, that’s too many relatati– That’s too many, like, personalities. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And it’s just a whole lot of, you know, especially when you’re getting to know somebody. So I’m getting to know him, living with him, but also add the layer of being parents together. So we have to parent together, add the layer of having like adult children in the house, add the layer of your mama in the house. So it’s like there was just all these dynamics thrown at once. And then the pandemic happened. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Like two weeks later. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: So it was like, oh, snap. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And that was enough, you know um and then, but I’m so grateful for that time because it made me confront a lot of the issues that I didn’t even know I had. I ended up–

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Same. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –Being super depressed. Super, super depressed. I was already depressed. So postpartum depression and then this was like added to it and– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –It forced me to go to therapy because I was done. I was like, I’m looking at I was looking at apartments like like one bedroom. I’m about to leave. I was like, look my baby going to stay here. I’m I’m going by myself. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Like, I’m leaving, right? I can’t do this, right.

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: [laughing] I’m leaving everyone here. Including my baby. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right right right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I’m sorry. Love him, but I got to go. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Like I was going that crazy and um and that also, like, taught me a lot about relationships with myself because I didn’t realize how messed up I was. I’ve always been such a people pleaser and I never really addressed why. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Mm hmm. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And like, you know, here I am making breakfast, lunch and dinner for like six people every day during the pandemic. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: What? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Like who does that? Like, why? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I don’t know. I don’t know, because I’m a tell you right now, you were like, well, you know, my patience, I’m a tell everybody right now. I am impatient. I am impatient. Please do not tell me something twice. I’ll be like, Stop talk– look I heard you twice the first time like don’t say it again. And I, I am I’m an only child and I’m just like, oh, so what you gonna eat?

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: See and I didn’t have that in me. I didn’t grow up like that. I have a Korean mom who does everything. So I in my head I have to do everything. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: In order to be a good like wife and mother. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I had to feed everybody. I had to do all the things. And that drove me to a breaking point. And like I– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –realized that in therapy, like, okay, I might just have to start saying no. And it was crazy because it wasn’t like any pressure anybody was putting on me. My fiance had never. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: He was just like, why are you doing all this? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: It was it was something I had put on myself and like, it was never required of me. I just thought it was– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –Based on my own stereotypes of what a wife, what a mother is supposed to do. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Mm hmm. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Um. And yeah, and I and I literally started going to therapy, we went to couples therapy as well. So I was doing both um and that helped us tremendously. And– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Mmm hmm. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –From that point it was like, okay, then I know that we can get married, but there’s still stuff he’s dealing with. You know, everybody gots drama from their childhood. You know what I’m saying? That if you don’t deal with it it is going to cause issues. So there was issues on that front. And then, you know, I didn’t realize, of course your parents and how your parents are plays a part in how you view relationships. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I guess. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: You know, my parents have been married for 40 plus years, but one thing that I never realized until I went to therapy is that they never fought in front of me. So every relationship before, when I told you I had only been in a relationship for like six months a piece was because, you know, now you’re out of the honeymoon phase and now you’re starting– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –To disagree. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And I thought disagreements meant we’re done. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right right right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: We don’t work because my parents had never disagreed in front of me. So if you and me are disagreeing. That means we not going to make it. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Wheras the truth was, they just chose to have their disagreements behind closed doors. Now, I don’t agree with that, because I feel like your children don’t learn healthy, like discussions or disagreements in a relationship if they don’t see it. But I had to realize, like, oh, so me and my fiance, like, we’re still good– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right, even though– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –if we have a disagreement. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, exactly. Exactly.

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: We just have to learn how to disagree in a in a respectful way. Make sure we’re talking through the issues, like you said, staying on topic, you know. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Mm hmm. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: But it doesn’t mean it’s the end of us. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Because in my head, I was like, oh, this is not going to work. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: It’s not going to work. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right, right. Right. I’m I’m wondering, I was just sitting here thinking about like my um my last relationship when I was married. And, I mean, it was it was all over the place um just in terms of not to the extent of of what Monica was describing, but just like I was I was just in this world of like working myself to death and not really being at home and trying to be a mom and just trying to just like and really not having, like, time for not that I didn’t have time for myself. Like I would go get my nails done and go to the spa and stuff like that. But I wasn’t devoting time to my to my mental sanity, to my mental– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Uh being, my mental illness. And I remember like uh, I would be on social media a lot and it would really irritate my ex-husband. And it’s funny because now that I’m like, I’m with someone and we are, you know, we we’re very open, we’re very honest with each other. I told you, we went to therapy. I never like anytime somebody would bring up, like, oh, we should go to therapy. I’d be like, um, going whatever. Like I like, I’m not going like, I ain’t going to therapy with you like. Because it was kind of like, I don’t love you enough to do that. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: You know, and so this is, this is a lot different because I really do trust this person and love this person fully. And now, like me and my partner, like we’ll be on social media. We’ll send each other stuff, like we’ll be on social media, like at the same time like sending each other stuff like in bed, like, lol like, like he right there. I’m right there. Um. And but it also reminds me of like. It always made me kind of uncomfortable when I would see people in relationships like, you know, I like, you know, you see people that are obviously doing it for the gram. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: And I’m not saying that I don’t put my relationship on social media or speak about it, but I just I’m very careful with curating, I guess what I allow other people to see. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Um. Just because I. I’ve never been one to be like, okay, like, all right, so I’m going to craft, like, God bless everybody who can do that. Like, I think that, you know, people who are able to create content, like, like get it in, do what you got to do. I’m not that person. I’m just like, Well, if somebody’s here and recording it, then that’s fine. [laughter] But like when, you know, but like, when is that ever going to happen? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Um. But yeah, I’ve always been really just really selective about just wanting to kind of put that out there. Not really, because I was concerned that other people would, like, criticize my relationship, but I just didn’t want to be part of that kind of, you know, that like just cacophony of people that are like, okay, like we’re doing it for the gram and like, now here’s what I will do for the gram. I’m a tell you all right now, there is there is a company called Shinesty. I hope I’m pronouncing this correctly. And they have like these really cheap, like, matching couples outfits, like suits. [laughing] They look ridiculous. Now, I would like we are planning that like that that’s going to happen. Like we’re definitely– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Oh my gosh. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Going to like be outside looking like picnic tables with like I’ll have on like a picnic table, like, you know, like dress and he’ll have on a picnic table, like all polyester, like a picnic table suit. But I’ve just been really selective– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Oh my gosh. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –With what I share um as far as my relationship on social media. Do. Like how, how are you with that? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Oh, I’m like that as well. But mine has come from an insecurity about my relationship because we have, you know, fast tracked a lot of stuff. We’ve never had that part of our relationship that was like, you know, this is my boyfriend and this is my girlfriend, I have that moment where you’re still like going up and down, up and down. Then you get engaged, then you get married. Because all of that was put together. I never felt comfortable sharing my relationship because I was like, man it’s going to end today like– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right, right, right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: You know? And then it wasn’t until I went to therapy and started talking to my therapist about how like I had like my views on marriage and, you know, what that should be was different than what I had of like, boyfriend or girlfriend. Like I needed to make sure, like I even though I knew marriage was like, you’re supposed to be working in it, you know, good, bad, health, sickness, all that stuff. Like even though I knew that I wasn’t really living that. So. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Mhmm. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: To me I didn’t want to post my relationship even though we was engaged, and had a baby. I didn’t want to post that because what if we didn’t make it? You know what I’m saying? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And so I, it’s just now like I’m starting to get more comfortable with it now. And we’ve been together five years. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right, right right. Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: But I still will never reveal everything because my Auntie Oprah said, Don’t put everything about your relationship out in the open, leave a little for yourself. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Oh yeah.

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Like that’s important. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: So I always like remembered when she said that and I was like, okay, girl, I got you. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, I would say, leave the majority to yourself. I mean. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Unless you have, like, you know, matching outfits, like, honestly, [laughter] I would like honestly, I would just, you know, like that and I know that’s me, but I’m just, I don’t know, like, that’s just like when it comes to your feelings and your emotional state and the fact that relationship, a relationship, whether it’s good or bad, can really influence your outlook on life and how you treat– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Yourself. And how you treat other people. I guess that’s why I’m I’m very selective. Like, I think like once a year I’ll post a picture of like, you know, us on his birthday or something. Like that’s like like there like, there you go, leave me alone. Like, that’s. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: And I mean, not really like that, but just more so like, okay, this is, you know, like, this is who I love, this is who I care about. It’s his birthday, like, it’s his day. Yay, like, let’s celebrate that. But yeah. Outside of that, I’m just like, yeah, I’m with somebody. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: [laughing] Right? And that’s all you need to know. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right and that’s it.  

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I know. And it’s. And it’s weird because I’m a content creator, but I ain’t creating, I don’t know, I don’t I don’t always feel comfortable creating content like that. And on top of that, my fiance is in a whole different like, like industry. So this is where social– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –media is not really a part of his world, so or like the way it is in mine. So I don’t I don’t necessarily feel comfortable making him do what I do. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Because that’s not– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Exactly. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –because I wouldn’t want him because I don’t want him talking to me about ones and zeros in computer science. Right. Like, [indistinct] 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Girl. You was like– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: So that’s– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –I don’t understand your binary talk. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right like I’m not trying to– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –so I respect that. So then I also need to respect the fact that he ain’t trying to be in my world like that either. So I was like, okay, so I don’t post as much about, you know, stuff with him. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Mm hmm. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And and I will tell you, like it’s been five years and I think I’m just now getting comfortable with him because I’m a tell you, even when I was pregnant, my emotions was all over the place. I was ready to leave. I was like eight months pregnant, walking around like, I’m done, I’m done. I was like, we need to figure out co-parenting. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: That’s me. That was me. I was like, The thing about it is that like, I don’t even like your face. And so I don’t understand how you are going to be around me after this baby drops. Like, we need to figure something out because this is not working. Yeah, like, that was. That was me. I was just like. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Like at every. Like, I’m not going to say I’m not going to sit here and say that like every argument, I’m like, you know what? Then forget it. But, like, that’s kind of my mental state. Like, I’m like, boy, then you know what? If you can’t agree on this, then I don’t, you know, I don’t think we gonna make it. And then like 10 minutes later, I’m like, Imani, you are fucking tripping. Like, what are you doing? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Like, calm down. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right. Right, right, right. That’s– [mumble]

 

Dr. Imani Walker: But. But I think, you know, I think, you know what what we both, something that we both can agree upon is is couples therapy, for sure. Um.

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Absolutely. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: And honestly, I wish that I would have gone to couples therapy with in relationships that that didn’t work out um just so I would have better insight into my relationship that is working out um with someone I’ve known for almost 20 years. So, so so that being said, Meg, thank you so much for being my copilot today, as usual. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: No problem girl. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: And obviously, this has been an awesome conversation. We’re going to take a quick break. But when we’re back, let’s get into my favorite segment of the show, Pop Culture Diagnosis. [music break] We’re back. This is pop culture diagnosis. This is a segment where we take a person or a character from a TV show or movie and assess their mental state. Or, as we say on this show, figure out what the hell is going on with them. Meg, can you give listeners a quick synopsis of the addictive show that is 90 day fiance? And what do you want to diagnose from this show today? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Girl. I love this show, okay? I’ve been watching this show and all of its spin offs for years. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: This is like the second– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: 90– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Time I think we talked about the show actually, too. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I just love it because it’s like cray– like it’s just so first of all, you’re looking at the inside of like other people’s relationships, but with the dynamic of now by cultural differences, because all of these people on the show have a significant other that’s in another country. And the 90 day, what 90 day basically is the the American K-1 visa. So you if you want to be with them, you you get the visa. They come to the U.S. for 90 days. You have to get married within that 90 days. So this show chronicles what happens during that 90 day time period. And a lot of people, this is the first time they’ve ever been around each other for more than like a week. So it’s the you know, that dynamic is crazy in itself. Um. So I love it. So you add that plus the fact that these people are coming from different countries and you have the fact that some of them are here for they just want a green card. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Mm hmm. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: So it’s like you kind of got a filter, like, do they want a green card? Do they really love this person? Like, all this stuff. So it’s a great show. I love it. I watch it all the time. Um. So today we’re going to be talking about Bilal okay on the the latest season of 90 day fiancé, Bilal lives, he’s a realtor in Kansas City, Missouri. He’s–

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. He’s like a– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Black. He’s–

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Real estate developer–

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yes. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –or something. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yes. He’s–

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –Successful. He’s Black, he’s Muslim. He, you know, he’s a divorcee with two kids. It seems like he has it all together. And then you add his new love, Shaeeda. Shaeeda’s from Trinidad and Tobago. Um. She’s also Muslim. And you see how they’re dynamic is, she comes over here. And we learn quite a few things about Bilal to the point where I’m like, ugh, uh he’s OCD. He was like going off on her because uh they have something called Wudu in uh Islam where you have to clean your feet, clean your hands, all that stuff. And she had water everywhere. Granted, it was everywhere, but the way he went off on her, it was just like, why is there water everywhere? And she was on the floor cleaning and she was like, you got me looking like Cinderella. Like–

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And she did. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. She did. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: She did.

 

Dr. Imani Walker: She did.

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: He he just he’s so OCD. It’s too much the way he talks to her. It’s very like, you know what? Any time I’ve seen the show and see him talk to her, the one thing that comes to my mind is like, he is definitely a Black man in America, because some of the things that he has said– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Girl. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –And how he has said them to her, I was like, Oooh, I’ve seen that before. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Okay. So one of the things now I’ve been talking about Bilal even before we started recording the show, I can’t stand Bilal. He gets on my nerves. Um. I think the consensus is, at least on the Internet, is that nobody likes Bilal. Um. And he definitely he definitely gave the producers enough fodder to to make them villainize him. Okay, fine. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah, yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Um. Now, here what was interesting to me, is that Bilal is a Black he is a Black American man. Shaeeda is from Trinidad and Tobago. She is West Indian. She’s Caribbean. Now, as somebody who was, my family is Jamaican. The women, when it comes to Caribbean women, it’s definitely a matriarchal society. And the– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Fact that he was talking to her, like I just kept like I just kept looking at him like like she’s going to slap him. And there was that there was that that clip where she was playing with him, and he was like, stop touching me. Like, you play too much. This, that, and the third. Now I do. I will say that he was wrong for talking to her that way and she was wrong for putting her hands in his face. But I do understand why she was just like, you know what? Like you’re get, you’ve been getting on my nerves for the past. I think it was like two days they had been together and she was like– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: You know what? Then I’m a do something to get on your nerves. He’s he’s very like he comes in, he’s he’s very, like, patriarchal. And she described, Shaeeda described like she would even say she’d be like, okay, yes, daddy, like, I hear you, daddy like to mess with him because she was like, yeah, like he’ll get, he’ll get uh his lecturing voice on. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Mm hmm. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: And it’ll like he’ll cha– like his voice will will become like it’ll go to a certain tone and he’ll speak really slowly. I was like, girl, this is craziness. Like, I don’t even understand. Like, like you’re from Trinidad and Tobago. Like you. Like, you could just come here. Like, you don’t have to [laughter] marry this man like you could. Like, I know a lot of people that are Trini, like, you can just come here and, like, get a job. Like, if you really wanted to come to the U.S., like, you don’t have to deal with this, you know, this this OCD man who– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Well, I think I think she’s one of the few that is like not just trying to get a green card. I think she legitimately thought she loved him. But also the fact that, you know, you have to keep in mind, yes, she’s Trini, but she’s also Muslim. So– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –That’s a different dynamic. Between man and woman. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: But she also, you know, in her defense, I guess she says that uh like she’s she gets why he’s like the way he is. But I will say, there’s been a few times where I was like, girl don’t do that. You don’t hit nobody on they head like that. I get you’re playing with him. But like– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: No, she was like, I need for you to stop. And, you know, and she’s petty. And I understood that cause I’m petty too, and that’s definitely something that I would do. Um. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yep. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I was actually raised Muslim. Now, I’ve never been in a relationship. I mean, I’m I stopped going to mosque and pretty much um uh practicing Islam, let’s say what if you can call it that when I was about ten. So I’ve never been in a relationship as an adult um with anyone who was Muslim. Um. I also I’m not sure. I’m not sure. I’m guessing that they are probably more maybe like Sunni Muslim or Orthodox Muslim. I’m not I’m not quite sure like what what form of Islam they practice. But I, I will say that I thought it was I thought it was very interesting that the thing about Bilal is that he he definitely won’t like he’ll say like, oh, I want somebody to basically like be my equal in this, that and the third. But then like he plays these games with her like that whole– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Thing about like, oh, I’m going to pick you up from the airport in this like van and I’m going to take you to my childhood home that’s rundown, the paint is peeling like he’s– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –And make it seem that’s my house and not this huge– because I want to make sure you want me for my for who I am and not my money. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah, like, that’s like I mean, I’ll put it to you like this. As somebody who has in most situations made more money than people I was dating. Right? I never hid anything that I had because I, I mean, that’s that’s a that’s a part of my life. It’s not something that I run around and I flaunt um because honestly, that’s how people get got. Um.

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: But but but to assume that. Oh, I need to I need for this person to prove to me because I’m not like like essentially he was saying, I’m better than you and I need free. I need to know that you accept me for me. And it’s like, well, but if you if, if, when I get off the plane, you just straight up lying to me like that’s a terrible way to start things. Like, I just. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: He he just really, hooo Bilal got on my nerves like. Like he was, hella– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: He was hella wack. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And he wants her to accept him for who he is outside of money and and cars and all that stuff. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: But he’s trash, though. I’m sorry he’s trash though. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: He is. But he won’t do the same with her because she’s not a dirty person by any means, from what I could tell. But she’s not OCD like him. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And it seems like he has. Like you can’t accept her for not being 100% OCD like you? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right, right right. I mean, in all honesty, as somebody who is very OCD and I mean, I’m looking around my office and it does not look like somebody who has OCD, but as somebody who is OCD, a lot of that is I mean, OCD is is really it’s like it’s an anxiety disorder. And it’s it’s my desire to want to be in control all the time because I had trauma when I was younger, like something was taken away. And so you always want to make sure that everything is where it’s supposed to be as I straighten out this picture. Okay, now I feel better. Um. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: And that’s that’s him. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: No, that’s right. That’s that’s him. There there was there was a there was a part of um one of the episodes where like, you know, she wears a hijab. And so, you know, you use like little little pins to to pin the cloth to your hair. And he was like, oh, my God like, how could you like, why would you put these little stick pins into this expensive couch? And I was just like, oh, my God. Like, first of all, it’s a couch. No one like unless she takes a knife and rips it, nobody cares about your little raggedy couch. Like, he just [sigh] he just [sigh]– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: It’s so expensive. And then. And then he said it was [Imani makes fake puking sound] unprofessional that like, the pins were just everywhere. I was like, welcome to living with a woman okay? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Right. And that and that’s– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: We gonna have stuff everywhere. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Exactly. And that was really my point. Like, even though like my partner, he is not OCD at all. Okay. And even though I do think that our therapist was very wrong when she said that, you know, that basically like, well, you know, you’re you’re very neat. And, you know, you you come from a family of people who are very, very OCD. And that’s something that you take pride in, but it doesn’t mean you have to be like that all the time. And I was like, well, you sound crazy, but I’m still going to pay you for this session anyway. Um, yeah, I mean, the thing about it is that like you, the, the love obviously that I have for my partner outweighs the fact that, like, I wish he would just rinse things off. And because the concept of food stuck on like plates or like utensils makes me incredibly angry, um even though I’m thinking about, like, what I have to rinse off in the sink downstairs right now. But that being said. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Oh my gosh. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: The love the love like the love has to outweigh like the positive has to outweigh the negative. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: And I just didn’t see that on this show. Now, interestingly, I did do a little, you know, like search, I Google searched, whatever. And they got married and they’re still together and like they’re on each other’s Instagrams. They make like little, you know, cute little videos and stuff. I do not understand this relationship. I don’t. I’m not going to say that I do. I do not understand this relationship. I do know how, you know, we a lot we all know how reality shows work. But I and I’m not saying that they went on there to, you know, completely lie about everything. But because a lot of that did look very um at least what I saw on 90 day fiance, like their their episodes. It did look very honest like when he– 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: –Basically like like told on her in front of like his whole family like oh well she she really, you know, she was very shocked when I took her to that childhood house, like to play a prank on her, and even his family looked at him like, why would you even play with her like that? Like, what is wrong with you? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah, yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Like, I like I just. I don’t know, like, I mean, all I can say is I’m happy that Bilal and Shaeeda. I’m glad that y’all together, but I don’t get it.

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: But I was going to say, what do you think? What would we diagnose him as? Narcissist for sure. Right? 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Well, here’s the thing. Uh. Yeah. I would diagnose him as being a narcissist. I definitely think that he is someone who puts his own needs before anyone, before anyone else’s, um to the point where, you know, like he really did think that that prank that he tried to play on her like, I’m a take you to this raggedy house, like, right when you get off the plane. Even though I told you that I live in this really nice house and, you know, my lifestyle is a particular way, I’m going to play this joke on you. Like, that’s like that shit is not funny to me. Like, you really did not have me get on no plane to come 3000 miles to Kansas City or wherever he’s from, and take me to a house where it looks like the ceiling is about to fall like this, like you’ve lost your mind. So I would say that he has some narcissistic tendencies, however they are together, you know what I mean? And they seem happy. So I don’t like I think that he’s I would I would say this. I think that he has narcissistic qualities. I think he’s very selfish. But I think that he really does love her and that she really does love him. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yeah. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: And so I think he is able to at least be selfless when it comes to her. So I would say he has some narcissistic traits, but I don’t I don’t know if I would if I would necessarily diagnose him as having like true narcissistic personality disorder. But he but he is a asshole. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Right. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: So sorry Bilal. [laughter] Sorry. [indistinct]

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Well good luck to them both huh. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yes. Good luck. Good luck. Bilal and Shaeeda, good luck. Yo, do you know his wife’s name is Shahidah? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Yes. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Isn’t that crazy? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Shahidah and Shaeeda. And that’s why he’s like I didn’t know if I wanted to be with her because her name was too close to my ex-wife’s name. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: And they both light skinned. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: They– 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: I was like–

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I would say they favor each other. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: They do! 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: He got a type.

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Okay Bilal, you are so strange. But I mean, you know what, good luck to y’all. I’m glad that y’all together. I’m honestly Shaeeda I’m glad that you took that that annoying man off the street [laughter] so that nobody else gotta deal with him and his OCD ways because I can only ima– can you imagine waiting on him at a restaurant? 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Girl. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: No. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: I just had to laugh because I saw a lot of his qualities like my father, I was like, Oh, Black men. Oh–

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: –Black men. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Has a lot of these little qualities. But–

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: But anyway. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Yeah. 

 

Meg Scoop Thomas: Congratulations to you both. 

 

Dr. Imani Walker: Congratulations to y’all both. That’s it for pop culture diagnosis. I hope you guys had as much fun as we did diagnosing Bilal. We’re going to have another fun character to analyze next week. So if you have suggestions for fictional characters out there you want for me to diagnose, hit me up on Twitter at @doctor_Imani or email the show at Hello@ImaniStateofmind.com. Thanks for listening to Imani State of Mind. Thank you as always Meg for co-hosting. We’ll be back for an all new episode next week. Let’s keep the conversation going. Follow the show on Instagram at Imani State of Mind. And again, email us at Hello@ImaniStateofMind.com.