The Phoenix:A New Love Story – Episode Transcript

Opening anecdote

Cohen do her bit with the music then we go right into a sample

Clip from trojan horse movie.

DOUGLAS + ALAYA: Ha, ha… burn it we did!

Debate the merits of using a cheesy sample right out of the gate on our first episode.

DOUGLAS: I’m Douglas Bevans

ALAYA: and I am Alaya Boisvert, together we are Adventures in Co-Parenting.

ALAYA: Thank you for joining us on our first episode. Twice monthly our show will provide an easygoing and engaging exploration of the highs and lows of co-parenting in the modern world. On today’s show you will Learn how a 5 story, 30 ton wooden trojan horse crippled a failing romance but led to a new take on love.

DOUGLAS: And in honour of replenishing forests after that epic burn, here’s a word from our sponsor, Tree world

DOUGLAS: So in 2009 I was attending an artists residency where I came up with the rather grandiose idea to create a replica of the infamous Trojan Horse.

The details came quickly and easily, and I assembled a team of skilled volunteers to help me realize the vision.

Not surprisingly, One of the first people I asked to join our team was my romantic partner and lover Alaya Boisvert. She really had all the bells and whistles, mad leadership qualities, management skills as well as a solid fundraising background. It took some time, and pleading! to convince her but she eventually came around and agreed to help.

I’m going to sound like a wuss here – but It’s hard to describe the level of intensity and energy the project actually required. Soooo instead of doing that, it might prove more useful to describe the finished piece which, by the way, took a team of 75 volunteers, $130,000 fundraised dollars and two years to complete.

The wooden Trojan Horse we created stood 5 stories high, weighed 30 tons, had an absinthe bar in the belly and was eventually pulled across the desert by 600 in-character greek slaves. We burned the horse down after one week of completion, if you haven’t guessed by now, this was for the famous art festival known as Burning Man.

As most can attest, It can be difficult to share a living space with a partner but it’s a whole other ball game to live together and work together. Especially if one of you, hhmmm, hmmm! is holding ill feelings about not ever really wanting to be involved in a stupid art project in the first place...and like only ever joined out of the kindness of their heart.

Alaya and I worked as leaders, I in charge of the design and art matters and Alaya as admin – responsible for the rest, you know the not so fun stuff. Fundraising, team management, and a host of other things Needless to say, by the time we got out to the build site, our relationship was in tatters and all we could do was hang on until the friggin Horse was built.

Finally, My artistic vision of two years came to fruition over a week in August of 2011. our horse was a success, we built it, we pulled and we burnt it. But our relationship of 4 years also went up in smoke that night. Even as the horse burned, a moment you might assume should have left an artist fulfilled and satisfied – but it was the opposite, I could hardly even look at it, instead I stared sadly at Alaya and wondered if it was really ever worth it. No surprise here, We broke up – but before doing so, duh, dun, DUN! we made love one last time...

Guest interview

Psychologist / Counsellor who shares advice on how to deal with the pain and loss of the relationship while still choosing to put family first

ALAYA: We are delighted to welcome Dr. Jocelyne Lessard to Adventures in Co-Parenting. Jocelyne is a Registered Psychologist who works in Vancouver with adults, teens, and children. As part of her private practice, she is committed to helping families adjust to separation and divorce and passionate about helping co-parents work together to raise and support their children.

She distinguishes herself from divorce coaches, mediators and parent co-ordinators who are also excellent resources for parents in high conflict relationships.

Guest Q&A:

  • What’s the most important thing parents can do to get through the pain of separation?

  • What is it that gives you hope or inspiration that we wouldn’t have seen 20 years ago?

  • Why would you say a show like this is important in 2019?

Closing discussion

Resolve the opening anecdote and discuss key ideas from interview.

DOUGLAS: Well, you’ll recall where we left our trojan horse story… with a final night of love-making.

ALAYA: It makes me blush when you say that. Even still!

DOUGLAS: Call it fate or simply poetic – but from the blackened ashes of the horse and a cindered relationship, emerged our phoenix, our daughter, Cohen moon, and a wonderful opportunity, thru co-parenting, for Alaya and I to love each other again.

ALAYA: It took some time though. But we’ll delve into that further in future episodes.

DOUGLAS: So, why are we doing this?

1. Providing hope and inspiration to parents

In North America, almost half of all kids watch their parents go through divorce, which means raising children apart is almost as common as raising children in a nuclear family.

Let’s face it, who doesn’t know someone who is, or has been, affected by divorce or separation? This podcast will provide a needed service to an underrepresented community. Listeners will hear each other’s stories and take guidance from qualified guests with experience in counselling, family law and child development.

To heal, parents deserve support from many different sources (sometimes professional resources are necessary/valuable); they deserve support from family, friends and a larger community prepared to consider children’s well- being.

2. We’re doing this to ensure children are happier, families are happier regardless of what they look like.

For many or most parents there is grief and loss; in some cases this is really significant.

Children’s well-being though is intimately connected to parent well-being.

Children of all ages adjust to separation; they do better when adults are well enough to take care of them -- and in a future episode we’ll talk about taking care of your ex in a time of need.

3. We’re not the experts, and realize people are in all different stages of their journeys of parenting after separation.

Parents who are experiencing difficult separations could be put off by the show’s positive spin and have misconceptions about preachy content.

However, the show will overcome these misunderstandings by addressing all aspects of co-parenting, the good, the bad and even the ugly. All are welcome, and we look forward to creating a dynamic program that serves the diverse needs of our community.

FUTURE CONTENT FROM JOCELYNE

  • What, in your opinion, does child-first co-parenting mean? What does it look like and why is it important?

  • One of my relatives recently told me she is only staying together with her husband to spare their children from the pain of separation. When, if ever, is it a good idea to stay together for your children’s sake?

  • In response to the of child-centered child rearing, the main points I wanted to make are:

    • seeing the impact of separation from the child’s perspective

    • recognizing that this will change over time and as the child enters new developmental phases

    • means parents are committed to being present for their kids so that kids can experience their own reactions to separation and work through their issues with the support of their parents (I.e., parents are the grown-ups making room for their children’s needs)

  • what kids need and what they ask for isn’t necessarily the same

  • means parents recognize the importance of remaining appropriate authority figures for their kids and working as a team whenever possible

  • the above may feel like an impossible task at different times of conflict between co-parents when hurt remains unresolved or is re-triggered

Kids don’t need perfect parents, they need good-enough parents.

Co-parenting is hard work and it’s ongoing; how it’s done has ripple effects throughout the child’s life and can carry over into the next generation.