Relationship Diversity Podcast

Your Body Never Lies: How Somatic Therapy Can Catapult Your Diverse Relationship Experience with Dedeker Winston and Orit Krug

January 04, 2024 Carrie Jeroslow Episode 81
Relationship Diversity Podcast
Your Body Never Lies: How Somatic Therapy Can Catapult Your Diverse Relationship Experience with Dedeker Winston and Orit Krug
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Episode 081:
Your Body Never Lies: How Somatic Therapy Can Catapult Your Diverse Relationship Experience with Dedeker Winston and Orit Krug


Do you feel like you have been working on your stuff for years and yet can't seem to release old hurt and trauma? 

Have you listened to hour after hour of podcasts, ready a bookshelf full of books and yet still feel uncomfortable in a diverse relationship dynamic - even if it's one you really want?

In this enlightening conversation with Dedeker Winston and Orit Krug, we learn why somatic therapy may be the thing that moves you closer to a more fulfilling, happier relationship experience.

We deep-dive into the intricacies of somatic therapy and how it helps release trauma and build resilience. We also explore the profound effects of survival responses on relationships, and how healing these wounds can lead to more fulfilling, desired connections.  Orit and Dedeker reveal how somatic therapies can be particularly helpful for individuals and couples navigating the complexities of non-monogamous or non-traditional relationships.

Finally, we put the spotlight on the power of movement and its transformative impact on relationships. We delve into the role of embodied emotions and the honest revelations that come from our bodies, often more truthful than our minds. Together, we explore the transformative power of vulnerability, and how we can physically learn to be more comfortable in our bodies.

Orit and Dedeker also share details on a life-changing Costa Rica retreat designed to employ somatic approaches for individuals ready to bridge the mind-body disconnect and create lasting change.

This is Relationships Reimagined.

There are only a few rooms left for the retreat in April.

Learn more here.

Connect with Orit | Connect with Dedeker

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Please note: I am not a doctor, psychiatrist, psychologist, therapist, counselor, or social worker. I am not attempting to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any physical, mental, or emotional issue, disease, or condition. The information provided in or through my podcast is not intended to be a substitute for the professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment provided by your own Medical Provider or Mental Health Provider. Always seek the advice of your own Medical Provider and/or Mental Health Provider regarding any questions or concerns you have about your specific circumstance.

Dedeker Winston:

And in our modern day we have our survival responses triggered by all kinds of things, everything from an actual life and death experience, like assault, or situations where we did think that our life was on the line, all the way up to I'm having an extreme stress response triggered by the fact that I'm having to walk into this meeting with 10 people that I'm having to give a presentation to. So we get all that sort of shock survival energy that comes into our systems and then we don't necessarily ever get a chance to actually feel the tail end of that releasing Our nervous systems, never really get that message of like okay, now you actually are safe, you don't need to freeze anymore or you don't need to fight anymore. So the somatic approach basically means, instead of me just sitting down and talking with you about all of that, your cognitive understanding of that we're actually gonna be looking at your body and really accessing a different area of your brain.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Welcome to the Relationship Diversity Podcast, where we celebrate, question and explore all aspects of relationship structure diversity, from solaramary to monogamy to polyamory and everything in between, because every relationship is as unique as you are. We'll bust through societal programming to break open and dissect everything we thought we knew about relationships, to ask the challenging but transformational questions who am I and what do I really want in my relationships? I'm your guide, keri Jarislow, bestselling author, speaker, intuitive and coach. Join me as we reimagine all that our most intimate relationships can become. Today's episode is part of our conversation series. I'm just one voice in this relationship diversity, movement and it's important to bring more unique perspectives into the conversation.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Today I'll be talking with Orit Krug and Dedeker Winston, all about somatic and movement based therapy, what it is and the importance of embodiment to shift and heal trauma and hurt. We discuss how this applies to diverse relationship structures, specifically non-monogamy, where many people read books, listen to podcasts and may comprehend the dynamics intellectually but still really struggle to feel ease and joy in the experience. Somatic therapy may be the thing that really helps you find the fulfillment you most desire in your non-traditional relationships. But first a little about them. Orit Krug is an award-winning board certified dance movement therapist, orit specializes in helping individuals and couples heal from past trauma and enjoy healthy, satisfying relationships using her unique approach with dance therapy. For over 13 years, orit has transformed the lives of more than 5,000 clients from 12 different countries. Her programs and retreats have helped hundreds break free from unhealthy relationship cycles and experience incredible transformations in their love lives. Before starting her business, orit led thousands of therapy sessions with psychiatric patients who went from feeling suicidal to joyfully dancing and reigniting their desire to live again within less than an hour. Orit is the founder of the Mind, your Body podcast and has been featured in daily OM, glam, thrive Global, the Health Science Journal, insider and more. Orit is currently thriving in a polyamorous marriage and navigating parenthood to a toddler in the suburbs of New York City.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Dedeker Winston is an educator, somatic experiencing practitioner and co-host of the Multiamary podcast, a research-backed relationship advice show that centers on non-traditional relationships. She's the author of the Smart Girls Guide to Polyamory and Multiamary Essential Tools for Modern Relationships. Let's get into the conversation. Hello everyone and welcome to this episode of Relationship Diversity Podcast. I have two incredible guests here and I'm really honored to have them on my show combined. They have decades of work in the diverse relationship field. They have worked with thousands of clients, which is a testament to the impact that they're making in people's lives. I'm really honored to have both Orit Krug and Dedeker Winston with me today, and we're gonna talk about somatic therapy and somatic healing and how important that is in a healing journey and how it differs from talk therapy, and I'm sure we'll get into a lot of other things. So, orit and Dedeker, thank you so much for being here. Thank you for having us. Yeah, thank you, I'm excited, so I'd love to have you introduce yourselves and let us know a little bit about you. Orit, do you wanna start?

Orit Krug:

Sure. So my name is Orit Krug. I'm a board-certified dance movement therapist. I work with both monogamous and non-monogamous individuals and couples to access and release trauma from the body through movements and then specifically helping them to work through attachment wounds, abandonment wounds, so that they can have healthier relationships with all their partners and really have the love that they desire and deserve. I'm also married, and a polyamorous marriage, and a parent to a three-year-old Mm.

Carrie Jeroslow:

That's going on.

Orit Krug:

Just a little bit, just a little bit and Dedeker.

Dedeker Winston:

Yeah, so my name is Dedeker Winston. I am a practitioner of somatic experiencing therapy, which is also a somatic approach to healing PTSD and trauma responses. I also got my training for working with couples through the Gottman Institute, so that's primarily my approach with my client base. I'm also a co-host and co-producer of the Multi-Amery podcast, and I've also written a couple of books along the way.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Yes, one of your books, I have to say. I've brought up in this podcast before and I tell a lot of people about the modern relationships book that you wrote because it really helped me in my own relationships and I have a lot of people come to me with communication problems, so I tell them to go get that book right away and they've expressed to me how helpful that was, so thank you for that.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Appreciate it, I appreciate it thank you, yeah, so how did the two of you meet? People might be wondering why do I have Orid and Dedeker here together?

Orit Krug:

I actually reached out to Dedeker maybe a little less than a year ago. I had this vision for a retreat just drop in while I was on my own retreat, and more so in the midst of a wild holly journey and it just all came together and I wanted to really work with someone who aligned with the way that I work. And I reached out to Dedeker I don't know how long ago it was, but we were in some communication and we got back into connection earlier, a few months ago I don't know what time of year it is so a few months ago. I think.

Orit Krug:

We have a three year old, so yeah, Exactly and we met and we talked about the vision and here we are today. We're coming together to run a retreat in Costa Rica this April.

Dedeker Winston:

Yeah, it was about a year ago that Orid reached out to me and it was for anyone who hasn't written a book with a traditional publisher, parts of this process can just be straight up hell, and I think Orid first contacted me. It was like we were right in the middle of the hell portion of a book production and so, fortunately, she was very patient. Well, I said, oh my God, yes, I'm interested, but please, good Lord, I need to get my life back in order and get this book out into the world. And so we were able to reconnect after the book release happened this last year and super, super excited.

Dedeker Winston:

The thing is that in the non-monogamy community, I think that what's been really wonderful to see is I think people are very interested in things like communication tools. They're very interested in educating themselves. I think, especially when people are new to the whole relationship diversity spectrum, that a lot of people are very motivated to find the books, the podcasts, find therapists on Instagram to follow, so it's like a very motivated population. And also that territory tends to be very cognitive and very heavy heavy on the jargon and the labels and let's analyze what your attachment style is and things like that. And that's all good. I've been running a podcast for 10 years. That's very heady stuff and also there is just something really special and, I think, something that for a lot of people has been untapped to work through some of our attachment wounds. To work through some of the stuff that can come up when we're coloring outside of the lines of relationships, from a more body-based approach.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Right, which is the connection.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Seemingly that is somatic in the body, and I love that because I had experience where my mother tried to get me to go to therapy, since I was 12 years old and my parents got divorced and I really resisted it. But when I finally did, it was in the early 90s in New York City. I went to a talk therapist and I got so confused by what he was saying. I was early 20s, I didn't really know myself very well and it just seemed so heady. I actually got really upset with him and said I don't understand what you're trying to say. It just wasn't landing in my body, and so what I came to know over the next 15, 20 years was that I understand the sensations in my body more than what's going on in my head. And when I found somatic therapy, that was when my healing journey really catapulted and I felt like I was starting to move. So I love that you all are working in this realm and I'm wondering if you could explain more about what somatic therapy is for anyone who doesn't know what that means.

Dedeker Winston:

Well, we could take a couple different approaches on this. I mean, I guess, like the big umbrella term of somatic therapy somatically literally just means in the body. So it's like any type of therapeutic approach where we're also inviting body sensations, body awareness into the conversation. Arete and I have slightly different backgrounds in that Arete is a dance and movement therapist and I'm doing somatic experiencing, where there's quite a bit of overlap there, but it's also a little bit different. So the somatic experiencing approach, the whole purpose of it, is around releasing things like traumatic shock, releasing things like survival responses to the classic fight, flight, freeze that tend to get a little bit stuck in our nervous systems. And what I mean by that is that if we look at animals in the wild, they tend to not exhibit symptoms of PTSD necessarily, versus we humans and domesticated animals are much more likely to exhibit what we see as classic PTSD symptoms, and some of the theory behind this is that animals in the wild tend to get a little bit more of this beginning, middle end experience when they're under a survival threat. So, for instance, if we think about the gazelle running away from a lion, that the gazelle runs, runs, runs, runs, runs, runs, runs, runs, runs, runs, runs, runs, runs, runs. The flight response is successful, the gazelle gets away, the gazelle gets to feel that sense of safety. And then what we also tend to see is, specifically, gazelles and prey animals tend to do this activity labeled as prunking, which is also after they've survived a near death experience. They'll tend to jump around and we tend to anthropomorphize that as like a victory dance, but it's theorized that this is like a discharge of kind of that extra survival energy, right as the adrenaline is coming down, right. Same thing with a freeze response that if your fight response as an animal hasn't worked, if your flight response as an animal hasn't worked, the freeze response comes in to tense your muscles, to get you to play dead, which either means maybe the predator is going to go away and not want to eat me, or maybe, with the predator does eat me, it may be actually less painful.

Dedeker Winston:

That's something that's actually happening on this functional level in your nervous system and in our modern day we have our survival responses triggered by all kinds of things, everything from an actual life and death experience, like assault, or situations where we did think that our life was on the line, all the way up to I'm having an extreme stress response triggered by the fact that I'm having to walk into this meeting with 10 people, that I'm having to give a presentation to right, and so we get all that sort of shock survival energy that comes into our systems, and then we don't necessarily ever get a chance to actually feel the tail end of that releasing, and so sometimes our nervous systems never really get that message of like okay, now you actually are safe, you don't need to freeze anymore or you don't need to fight anymore. So the somatic approach basically means, instead of me just sitting down and talking with you about all of that, your cognitive understanding of that we're actually going to be looking at your body and really accessing a different area of your brain, the amygdala, where these experiences, these traumatic memories, are actually stored. And when I'm working with clients, usually we're paying attention to when they think about the traumatic experience or in their day to day life, when they notice themselves starting to get triggered, we get really curious about what's actually going on in their body. Is it that you start to sweat? Is it that your shoulders start to cave in on each other? Is it that your fists start to clench? Is it that your jaw starts to quiver, whatever it is, and I'm often working with clients to feel those experiences, to reduce the panic around feeling those feelings, in order to actually have that defensive response complete a little bit.

Dedeker Winston:

So that's one part of the work, and then another part of the work is also helping the client build up more of a sense of an actual felt sense of safety and security in the body. So actually feeling that sense of relief, actually feeling a sense of safety. Again, it's sometimes it's about your brain can understand. Okay, I know I'm not in that bad situation anymore. I know I'm at home with my partner and it's safe and it's okay. And everything from the neck down doesn't understand English or logic. And it's about how do we transmit these messages of safety and security into your nervous system, not just into your brain.

Dedeker Winston:

I could talk for six more hours, but I'm going to pause there.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Well, I love this because I really identify with what you're talking about, because even at the end of my day, I have about a hundred balls I'm trying to keep in the air, and so that's in addition to any of the trauma that I'm trying to work on. My nervous system just never settles unless I'm really focused and intentional and have tools to allow myself to settle, to take a breath, to release the day. And I think we live in such a stressful world where a lot of the narrative is push, push, push, push, push and excel, excel, excel and always try to do better, and it's like there's never that room to really settle, and so that work is really important. Ori, did you want to add on to that with your work?

Orit Krug:

Yeah, sure, really well said Dedeker. And to add to that, the latest trauma research has been showing us for many years actually, that trauma memories are stored in the nonverbal parts of our brain and our body as fragments of sensation and this, like Dedeker was saying, is part of the amygdala, the hippocampus is also. When they do brain mapping it shows that it shrinks in volume and that part of our brain is responsible for distinguishing past from present. So as long as you can tell your mind, hey, my partner is safe, they're not doing what my ex did or whatever the trauma was, the brain's not understanding that. And that's the same thing that can happen in traditional talk therapy, where we are primarily using our prefrontal cortex, the part of our brain that governs logic and language and reasoning. We use that part of the brain to talk about our trauma, but that's not where the trauma is primarily stored. So that can be a big disconnect for people. The brain mapping that research has shown is this part of the brain actually goes offline. So if we're trying to process trauma through this part of the brain that was going offline during trauma or during chronic stress, it doesn't really work for a lot of people who need that nonverbal processing. And so when we go back to the notion that trauma memories are stored as fragments of sensation, then what I do with my clients is to begin. I just simply start to have them connect to their body through very gentle, safe movements, which will inevitably bring up similar sensations that are reminding them, that are the trauma memories stored in their bodies. And this can be true for anyone who's never really done any movement-based activities. This is true for my clients who are diehard yogis, who are past professional dancers. It's the kind of unplanned organic movement that's like oh my God, what am I feeling? Like I'm feeling this fear come up through my chest or through my throat or wherever it's coming up, and all of a sudden it feels like this trauma from the past is happening all over again.

Orit Krug:

But in the safety and container of a therapy session and the safe therapeutic relationship which we want to build first, I can help my clients, we can help our clients in that moment of opportunity. They can feel that fear coming up through their body, but we can help them regulate by staying connected to their body, staying connected in the therapeutic relationship instead of what they're usually doing, like I say, with their partners. A conflict comes up and they're already in that freeze response which, as we heard, is a very ancient kind of severe response to save your life. So a lot of people in real life conflict will go into a freeze response. They're not even there anymore, they can't work through the conflict. That fear is so overwhelming and hijacking their nervous system and body.

Orit Krug:

But if that same fear starts to arise in session, we have that moment of opportunity to help them move through it.

Orit Krug:

But they literally can move through it in a way that is uniquely helpful to each client and that allows the nervous system and their bodies an experience of yeah, I can feel fear and move through it, and that is one part of it where it's like that literally can rewire your nervous system and build new neural pathways, where the fear doesn't lead to a complete freeze or whatever the dominant nervous system responses, but the fear can actually what Stephen Porges calls mobilizing without fear. So let's say we all know the fight or flight response and we usually associate that with yelling or escaping. It's the sympathetic nervous response that happens with fear the fighting, the yelling, the aggression. But we can be in a sympathetic nervous system response without fear, which is more like speaking up with empowerment or playing or moving, and so we're still in this active state, but it's without this fear and that's how we could, going back to the example, stay in conflict, perhaps speak up for what we need and work through some really difficult things that come up in relationships.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Yeah, I was going to say specifically in nonmonogamy or diverse relationships, there's a whole slew of emotions that come up that maybe don't come up in monogamy, or probably do, but maybe are not looked at in the same way. And so your work with diverse relationships, nonmonogamy seems like this somatic therapy, will really help people navigate these new areas. Is there an integration of the head and the heart and the head and the body? Because I feel like when I'm in that place of you know, I'm kind of like cut off right here at the neck. It's either in my head and fuzzy or in my heart and my body and I'm feeling all these things and it seems like at some point there would want to be this integration of the two. Can you speak to that?

Dedeker Winston:

Yeah, what you're describing is super duper common for, I think, all human beings in all types of relationships I think, especially in modern Western culture where we are encouraged to just be floating heads, really, that's really the important part is like leading with your head and understanding things and leading with logic. And so, yeah, I think feeling that disconnect is very common, especially common with people who are playing around with any other type of non-normative relationship. All the time I get people coming to me, it's like I've read the books and I've listened to your podcast and like I get it, Like I get it, I get it, I get it, I get it, I get it. And why do I feel this way?

Dedeker Winston:

Still, For some people, if they're not necessarily choosing to work on this, it's just a time process of okay, maybe eventually over time your body will realize that this is actually safe. You'll have enough experiences of safety with your partner that eventually then you won't have as much of a quote unquote freak out or as much of an intense emotional reaction around stuff. And that is the case for some people, but for other people sometimes that disconnect can be a cue that there's something in there, there's some kind of like attachment trauma that's still being carried with you. There's some kind of trauma or baggage from a past relationship. There's some sort of abandonment trauma that's still there. That we can, when we're not here, just talking about the philosophy of non-monogamy and talking about jargon and talking about terms, that we can actually create space to hold those sensations as they're coming up and start to connect the dots.

Dedeker Winston:

And what I find with people most of the time when I'm doing any kind of somatic experiencing session with a client, people are often surprised by what comes up.

Dedeker Winston:

When we turn down the volume on just the talking, on just the brain, and just see what they're feeling and what images are coming up, what memories are coming up, They'll be really, really surprised.

Dedeker Winston:

And then, once we get to the end of the session and have a chance to chat a little bit, integrate, make it look a little bit more like a talk therapy session, that people really connect some amazing dots, I would say between wow, okay, so my brain story around what was going on was this. But then I realized the feeling, the engine that was driving this feeling was this particular memory and now that I know that I can be a little bit less afraid of it the next time this feeling comes up, now that I know that maybe I can talk to my partner about the fact that I've made this connection, that we can generate some more understanding in our relationship. So I would say, in my experience it's not quite like a magic wand, like I'm going to remove the barrier between your head and your body and then it's all going to be okay. It is a little bit of this like pendulum back and forth, I think. But what do you think?

Orit Krug:

Oriette, yeah, I want to add to that. It made me think of a couple that I was working with, and this is speaking more to the physical movement piece. Any issue that a couple comes with in session we can put it in movement, because if they continue to talk about it kind of couples that I work with who have already gone in circles many, many times around the same issues it will just keep going around in circles. And so with one couple that I was working with, they had a lot of panic in the separation whether that was separation related to non-monogamy or not. It was just like we have to be together and enmeshed all the time, otherwise it's not going to be safe. And those were their trauma stories. And so we literally moved with separating, with moving away, having them move away from each other and coming back and moving away. And in the moving away a few things happened. One they experienced in the session that it wasn't as horrible as they were making it out to be in real life. So there was one way that there was this disconnect, like that's what trauma does. It creates this intensity and this amplified story that may not even really be accurate. And another thing that happened, which I helped guide them through was when you are apart, when you are physically moving, apart from each other.

Orit Krug:

How do you want to move your body? How do you want to meet the sensations in your body? You could find that you want to move slowly and really indulge in just not being in that. Go, go, go in that busy space. I'm not trying to fill my time while I'm apart, but I can actually indulge in being apart from each other, which is a novel idea and really learning how to meet yourself in your body. Do you want to hold yourself, hug yourself? Do you want to stretch? It could be anything and it's very unique to each person.

Orit Krug:

And then, how and when do you want to come back to each other? Because a lot of times at the beginning they would come back to each other because they felt guilty, they felt bad, but they didn't truly at least one of them didn't truly want to really give up that independence yet. So, getting comfortable with that in movement too, like, oh, I wanted to come back and reconnect now, but I can see that my partner hasn't. There's another opportunity for fear coming up or anxiety coming up in the body and moving through that and having an embodied learning and understanding and continued experiences of I can take care of myself in this way even when my partner isn't fully available. And this is speaking a little bit to breaking codependent patterns.

Orit Krug:

And then the last layer is when you do come back together, how do you want to do that? Because it was so serious. The way that they were talking about it is like when can we reconnect and what do we want to do? And it was just very upstale and so in movement it was like oh well, I can kind of they kind of like flirty and I can roll my shoulders and we can brush up against each other and we can come back to back and just play and find some new excitement, even in a very long-term relationship. And they really ended up saying that the way that they thought about separating was so detrimental in their minds. But actually when they moved it together in session, it was fun, it was tolerable, it was more than tolerable because they actually made it enjoyable and they can find joy in separating and coming back together in a new way. And this happened in maybe a session or two.

Carrie Jeroslow:

When you talk about that in terms of long-term relationships, it seems like bringing it into the body and embodying the emotions helps to break that loop of always doing things in the same way, always saying the same things, always coming back to the same conversations. It really seems to break that pattern, do you find that?

Dedeker Winston:

I also wanted to do a recall of what came up in our conversation the other day is that it's the kind of funny thing where the body will very rarely lie to you or to someone else if you're letting them see and if you're sharing that.

Dedeker Winston:

And our brains are really good at lying and denying, and maybe not even as extreme as lying, but even just wanting. I don't really want to admit that I feel this way, and so I'm going to interpret it, I'm going to put different words on it to make it more palatable, not just to the other person but to myself as well. And when you actually give space for those feelings, those body feelings, to come through, there doesn't tend to be a lot of 301 level talk that comes through, because really, from a sensation perspective, the palette is pretty simple getting into sadness, fear, panic, urge to escape, urge to fight. That it's like. Then our brain is the one that comes in and layers in oh, this is anger, oh no, this is frustration, oh no, this is annoyance. And so that is the really cool and also scary thing sometimes about the work is that there's less to hide behind.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Yeah, because the brain will definitely look through all the filters of my past right and interpret everything into all of these stories. And that's what's been really powerful with me for somatic therapy is I drop into? Where is the sensation, what am I feeling? And you're right, dedeckard, the body just doesn't lie. And I feel that that is really helpful when you're wanting to move in your healing. And that's, I think, why talk therapy never really did it for me, because I could talk myself creatively in and out of everything.

Orit Krug:

I think it really comes down to vulnerability that we may even be so aware of what the trauma is and what the fear is and why we're showing up a certain way, but it's so vulnerable to actually show it. And when we communicate with words, we can hide that vulnerability, we can hold back on it. But if we literally physically learn to be vulnerable and become comfortable in our bodies, maybe that requires opening, like literally opening up and becoming comfortable with opening, instead of maybe someone who's so used to crossing their arms over their heart or whatever it might be, or softening. This reminded me of another example of a couple I was working with. Just in the first few minutes of session, one of the partners particularly she was very chatty and we knew at this point that when she got really chatty it was a defense mechanism for being in her body and really feeling her feelings, and she was.

Orit Krug:

It was just the first few minutes of session. She was saying how their week was going and she really didn't know what she needed from her partner and she kept going around in circles. I'm not sure what I need. This has been going on and this is going on this week and I'm like, okay, let's just pause here, and I think that too, the words can be like oh, I don't know what I need, but your body, if you are attuned with your body, you usually know what you need. And so I was like tune into your body for a moment. What do you want to do in relationship to your partner right now?

Orit Krug:

And she pretty quickly just leaned on his shoulder and she just let her weight surrender into him. She just wanted to be supported by him. She didn't know how to ask for that in words. She actually I remember her saying that she's like I don't really need support, I don't really need to, I actually want my space. And it's just interesting because the mind is like oh, I just want my space, I'm so tired, I'm so overwhelmed, I just need some space. And then we can come back. And I almost think that's just like a fear of asking to really be held, because that can be so shamed, right, it can be so shame like, oh, you need reassurance or you need to be held. I think that's at least in my relationship experiences. That's not always well received. And so when we asked her body, what she felt her body wanted to do is like yeah, I just want you to hold me. It's simple, yeah.

Carrie Jeroslow:

I am. I feel that in my body because I've been married for oh gosh, 16 years. I've been with my husband for 18 and then my other relationship for almost four. There are times when we just get so busy with our lives and the things that, because of that busyness, haven't been really worked through. I just want to go over to him and do exactly what you just said is just collapse into his arms for a moment. Which is really interesting, because that was the moment I knew that I wanted to be with him was the moment he hugged me and held me for the first time. We had known each other. We both worked for Blue man, but in different cities, and we came to the same city. I just remember he came in and he just gave me a hug, hello. It was just that moment that was so connective.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Now that you're saying that, I feel like that's many times we put up this, like we just got to get through our day and we just got to make sure that we get everything done and that the kids take priority, whereas we need to also have that connection with ourselves. You just said that the next time I see him, I just want to go into his arms. And you're right, that feeling, that full body connection is so different than the mind connection, which we can do really, really easily because that's what we have had to survive to do. But it doesn't feel as connective as just falling into him or just putting my head on his shoulder. That's really powerful. Thank you for bringing that up.

Dedeker Winston:

I think it's important to realize that we're really having to swim against the stream here, especially if we're looking specifically at American history. Historically, we have this puritanical background where literally it was anything that is of the body is sinful, is impure. Any bodily urge you have is impure. Every single four letter word that we have has to do with a bodily function or something about the body. In our modern working culture, it's all about denying what your body needs. Don't eat until your lunch break. Don't go to the bathroom until your bathroom break. Don't sit down if it's not the time to sit down Again. Like you were saying, carrie, just push, push, push, push, push, push, push.

Dedeker Winston:

We spend our days not listening to our bodies and disregarding things and also carrying this baggage of like it's probably not that important anyway, really, even those simple things of even realizing oh yeah, I would love to just lean against my husband for a second. Or actually it would be nice to come home and just like splat on the floor for five minutes before I have to get up and make dinner. Even those little tiny things sometimes it's really hard to get ourselves to. Even the verb that I wanted to use was indulge, when it's really not an indulgence. It's like even just to listen to that regard is still really hard, because there's so much, I think, resistance and pushback and forces that would encourage us in the opposite direction.

Orit Krug:

Yeah, absolutely. And, harry, you might like to know that when she collapsed I wouldn't say collapsed, when she surrendered her weight into your partner he was like ah, thank you, I've been wanting to support you, you haven't been letting me support you, you haven't been letting me hold you. And he gets so much joy out of that, and it's beneficial both ways, always, whatever the relationship structure is.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Yeah, oh. So I love some of the tools that you just said, Dedeker, of how to start introducing the awareness of ways to get into our bodies. What other tips can you give people who are listening to this and they're feeling like, wow, that really sounds like me, that I'm just so up in my head and disconnected from my body. I can give you some tools that you could suggest that they could just bring into their lives. I know working obviously with a somatic therapist or coach would be incredible, but I love to give people tools that they can, just at the end of listening to this podcast, they can go and experience.

Dedeker Winston:

I like to start out people pretty simple, and usually I encourage folks as far as like if we're talking about not just the work that we're doing in the therapy room but when people are out and about in their day-to-day lives, usually I encourage people to start to tune their antenna, start to expand their awareness, to start to notice pleasant sensations. And now that can be hard, and so usually the homework that I give people is very, very small in encouraging people of just when you get into bed tonight. Just notice what that feels like. That's all. The moment that you get into bed, whether you're pulling out your book or your phone or if you're going straight to sleep, just notice that and that's your only homework.

Dedeker Winston:

And it's a good opportunity because usually when we're getting to bed is we're winding down to the end of the day, the brain is starting to wind down and ideally there's not as many distractions around and that you can just check in with a sense of like, oh, it's nice to be in bed, or even if it's checking in of like it's not nice to be in bed because my body hurts, or it's not nice to be in bed because I have anxiety about the fact I'm going to have insomnia tonight, like the past few nights or whatever. But even that, even with the check in, if there's still information that comes through, even if it's noticing something negative for me when I'm working with people, I find that still helps just in opening up that channel and opening up that awareness in the first place. That's usually the place that I start with people. There's a lot more that I tend to do.

Carrie Jeroslow:

I love that simplicity because, especially people who have very busy lives, simple is the way to ground it into a daily habit. Great, do you have any suggestions?

Orit Krug:

Yeah, absolutely. I also like to keep it simple, because the body can bring up so much complexity, especially when we're not used to being tuned in. And on the subject of us moving so quickly through our days that we just we don't stop to really feel our bodies, to feel where we are in space, I like to have people experiment with moving slower and that could literally be like all right. If you're at your desk and you have to go to the bathroom, can you move awkwardly slow to the bathroom? Or if you're, if you're going from room to room, if you have multiple rooms, can you? It doesn't even mean that you have to take up more time, although you can. If you have that luxury, maybe you move slower but take bigger steps. You get to the bathroom in the same amount of time. So, just changing it up, and usually when I work with people in sessions, when I have them move slower, there is a good amount of anxiety that comes up because they are not used to it. Some people do respond like, oh my God, this feels so good, I do need to move slower, and eventually people get there as well. But it brings up a lot of anxiety because there's a lot of this shame, or I'm not going to get enough done, or some people's traumas are literally tied to if I move slow, I'm not going to be safe.

Orit Krug:

I was working with a client who whose big trauma was being stuck in a house fire and because she didn't move quick enough she almost died. So of course the body's going to remember that and associate slowness with life threatening danger. So it also matters what trauma memories are stored or associated with the movement that I might have my clients try, but starting to move slowly and even starting to move really, really quickly as experimenting with the opposite and is really helpful. There's all sorts of different movement qualities that people can explore. Moving with control, like controlling the speed that's on the same page controlling the direction, or maybe I'm just moving more freely and starting to see what that brings up. And I do like to encourage people to approach that with curiosity and play and, again, not take it too seriously.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Yeah, I end all my solo episodes with stay curious. I think curiosity has always helped me move through my healing journey, because I can get really judgmental about how I've acted. It's usually judgmental about my own actions or lack of actions or lack of feeling or whatever it is, so curiosity has helped me move through that time. I'd love to move to talking about the retreat that you all are doing together. It sounds amazing. I'm going to include the website for it because I looked it over and that looks really dreamy. It's in Costa Rica, but I'd love for you to tell us a little bit about it and who this retreat will really help.

Orit Krug:

So we are doing a poly retreat in Costa Rica this April and it is for people who resonate with what we've been talking about. So perhaps you have learned a lot of terms. You're really aware, really insightful, about your journey and what might be really challenging to you. You're aware of things like insecurity, jealousy and very normal feelings that come up through non monogamy and you understand it, but it's just not really resonating in your body in order to be able to shift the way that you show up or change the way you may respond to these feelings. You may be continue to feel hijacked by these intense emotions, which is blocking progress in the health and the deepening of love in relationships.

Orit Krug:

So it's really if you feel like you're missing that mind, body, integration, maybe really have done a lot of the work, but you just want to feel it. That is really who we are hoping to work with in Costa Rica, because the retreat has this somatic approach where we are going to work through the body and through the movement to have this efficient, immersive experience of all the things, what you need to do. But let's do it, let's get our bodies on board so that when you leave the retreat it's like, yeah, I actually am showing up in a different way in myself and in my relationships and bridging that disconnect and talk therapy where it's like I'm talking about what I want to do, but I keep repeating the same patterns. It's all inclusive, it's a luxurious space, there's an infinity pool, beaches nearby, it's beautiful and we're super excited. We have a chef cooking for us all three days or four nights.

Dedeker Winston:

And I also want to clarify that it's not just about come and feel all your bad feelings really intensely in a beautiful space. Our intention is also that this is about accessing feeling like actual felt sense of joy and safety and ease and connection as well. I think a big part of this is like anyone who's feeling isolated in their healing journey or isolated in their non-monogamy journey and also just wants to be able to feel through these things while other people are also working through these things, and to know that they're not crazy and that they're not alone and that there are like-minded people, other insightful people who are doing this kind of work as well. This is a great space to jump into.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Yeah, because my experience in non-monogamy I have to search outside of my little area to connect with people who are experiencing this and I think a lot of times I feel very alone. And the other thing that I wanted to say about retreats and why I love retreats if you all anyone out there who this sounds exciting for feels this is for you. What I love about retreats is that it takes you out of your everyday life and is an immersive experience, and I feel that committing to something like that is a way to really quantum leap your healing, because you're not going to be doing something and then going back into your life doing something and back into your life, you're really taking a set amount of time around, both Orit and Dedeker, who are trained to really help you move through a lot of this. And I wonder if people have never had somatic training, if the three days would be just like this opening experience for them to really understand the difference between living in your head and living in your body.

Orit Krug:

Yeah, most of the people who come on my retreats because I do retreats with other populations too they mostly have not done somatic approaches, and that is the big draw, one of the big draws of the retreat and then it's just like oh my God, I've been missing this all along. And because it's similar, where they have done a lot of different therapies, a lot of different work, where it's just like all the pieces come together and it goes from feeling like I've wasted a lot of time or spent so much time doing all this other stuff, to everything that I've done has come to this moment where I can feel it now and I can really embody it. Yeah, Amazing.

Carrie Jeroslow:

So, as we're wrapping up Orit and Dedeker, how can people get in touch with you if they want to connect with you more?

Orit Krug:

Yes, you can find me on my website oritkrugcom. That's my namecom. I've got everything there my retreats, client stories, whatever you're interested in looking further into.

Dedeker Winston:

That's all up there and same you can also look for my weird name also weird name dedekerwinstoncom, and if you're interested in my podcast, you can go to multiamorycom, or you can look for multiamory, wherever you get your podcasts, which I highly recommend Weird name retreat. I know Maybe in the future we can make a retreat for people with weird names to have some solidarity and connection and understanding.

Orit Krug:

We can all work through our collective baggage together. With weird names. You are also non-monogamous.

Carrie Jeroslow:

There's like, okay, god, please let me just really make in the niche. Well, my father still can't say my last name correctly, so maybe I'll get to join you. Well, I really appreciate you all being here. This has been really informative. I know this is going to help so many people. Everyone, please go check out both Oryd and Dedeker's solo stuff and also definitely a plug for multiamory podcast. That podcast has helped me. It has been around for a really long time. You guys are very research backed and it is just a wealth of information. And, oryd, I was checking out your YouTube channel. There's a lot of great videos on there too. There's so many resources that both of them have for you that are free. And also, if you are able to check out that retreat, it is happening in April. Rooms are going fast. Go check out the website. It's going to be linked in the show notes and thank you both so much for being with us. Thanks so much for listening to the Relationship Diversity podcast.

Carrie Jeroslow:

Want to learn more about Relationship Diversity? I've got a free guide I'd love to send you. Go to wwwrelationshipdiversitypodcastcom to get yours sent right to you. If you liked what you heard, please subscribe to the podcast, you being here and participating in the conversation about Relationship Diversity is what helps us create a space of inclusivity and acceptance together. The more comfortable and normal it is to acknowledge the vast and varied relating we all do, the faster we'll shift to a paradigm of conscious, intentional and diverse relationships. New episodes are released every Thursday. Stay connected with me through my YouTube channel, where I'll give you even more free resources and information, all about Relationship Diversity. I'm super excited to go deeper into YouTube because I'll be able to connect and have conversations directly with you. You'll find the link in the show notes. Stay curious. Every relationship is as unique as you are.

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