Dear Congressman Weiner
I know you cant hear it, but I am actually beginning this with a sigh. A long one.
Partly its an expression of frustration about what youve done and how it is part of a continuum of men in public office flouting common sense for some kind of sexual power trip. (And by the way, right there, Im not talking about men in the all of mankind sense. Im specifically talking about human beings with male genitalia because correct me if Im wrong were not watching on our television sets a parade of women in politics whose reckless sexual behavior has jeopardized their professional future).
But my sigh is not just about that. Its a way bigger issue. I have fatigue related to what Sports Illustrated writer Steve Rushin recently called the scorn industry in a piece he wrote in the wake of Ohio State football coach Jim Tressels resignation.
The scorn industry -- that co-dependent network of writers and readers, yakkers and listeners, trolls and tweeters heaping contempt on our fellow man -- manufactures one thing: Moral outrage, Rushin writes.
Congressman, unquestionably youve given the scorn industry plenty to buzz about from sea to shining sea. Youve appeared before the world, confessed you sent sexual photos of yourself to women you met on the Internet, confessed you then lied about it and said you will remain in office.
So lets begin there. I dont know if the latter is possible, at least in the capacity youre used to as a well-respected public servant frequently sought out by the media to express your views. However, from a life-coaching perspective, I think weve reached a point in your story where we need to go beyond political or moral themes and talk about what now? in a grander sense.
You need to get emotionally healthy. It doesnt take a therapist to figure out you must determine what is driving this need for external sexual validation bordering on crossing the line to physical. This playing with fire, this submerged desire to sabotage all you have worked for and potentially alienate a romantic partner with whom you havent yet celebrated a one-year wedding anniversary, is about something far deeper.
Lets just say it. You didnt care about exposure. You couldnt have. There were too many women and the potential evidence against you was plentiful. Your face is plastered all over television on a regular basis. On some level you had to know it was inevitable that youd be standing at a podium facing the scorn industry. What of this urge?
A major part of effective life coaching is asking the right questions. I believe we can get to the heart of your problem by going on an exploration of the answer to this What were you thinking? Im not asking this in the rhetorical, incredulous sense. I mean this must be examined in order for your life to resume in any meaningful way. You have to figure out what drove you to want this particular kind of attention. Understanding this is crucial.
I cant tell you what to do about your elected office. Youve made a decision to stay and time will tell how that will go. But I would suggest you ask yourself very seriously what you want your life to look like 10 years from now. Then work backward to make a plan as you attempt to piece things back together. Think of it like this: Youre now writing the part of your obituary that will come after your 2011 transgressions.
The scorners will have a field day with this next observation, but what the heck. We know youre smart about policy, but as time passes if you can pull back and look at this with some measure of wisdom, you will come to the conclusion that regardless of what happens politically, you should focus on the love in your life first. You have either married a woman who can weather this or one who cannot no matter how hard she tries. If she is capable of forgiveness and loves the essence of who you are, if you are loved that much, then you are a lucky man. That is a starting point in all this mortifying madness youve unleashed on yourself.
Last year you told The Daily News when you got married, Im over the moon. In the 1996 Cosmopolitan photo shoot of bachelors -- featuring you -- thats been making the rounds this week, you said this about a potential first lady in your life Someone smarter than me. I want to be sucked back into the throes of love isnt that what everybody really wants?
Ostensibly, yes. But our road to that is often cluttered with emotional debris and acting out. If you want help clearing it, you know where to find me.
Nancy Colasurdo is a practicing life coach and freelance writer. Her Web site is www.nancola.com and you can follow her on Twitter @nancola. Please direct all questions/comments to FOXGamePlan@gmail.com.