Author:Paul Gilmartin

Ru (last name withheld)

Paul’s friend Ru stops by to talk about the deep-rooted fear she has of men abandoning her.   From her absentee Air Force dad to her broken poet boyfriend living in a storage shelter, she reveals the painful choices she has made to try to get men to stay – sleeping with Gene Simmons and chasing Tommy Lee – and the humiliation by peers that almost killed her.   We talk about the damage of labeling girls as “sluts”.   Plus some great listener suveys, especially one about not knowing what constitues sex abuse.   How can you not listen to an episode involving Gene Simmons and Albert Einstein?

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Mark T

The actor/ singer/ comedian is best known for performing musical comedy with Stephen Lynch, most notably selling out Carnegie Hall in 2009.   What most people don’t know is that Mark was diagnosed at age eleven with scleroderma, a crippling, often fatal disease.   He has beaten the odds but denying the pain and fear associated with it left him with a coping mechanism just as insidious – an addiction to lying.   Mark can be seen on the show A.N.T. Farm on the Disney Channel.

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Ronnie Schiller

She was named Ronnie at birth by her bipolar mother who cared so little, she chose the name of the baby’s father. It goes downhill from there. Though her story is incredibly dark, it’s ultimately one of resilience, humor and insight into mental illness and how to cope with being bipolar on a daily basis. Ronnie is the author of several books, including Mother’s House Payment.

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Mike Schmidt

The writer, stand-up and pocaster (The 40 Year-Old Boy Podcast) and Paul get into the ins and outs of rage and its tempting oblivion, Mike’s weight battles (he tipped the scales at 505 lbs at one point), his Dad issues (Mom described him as a Monster) and what makes even the most aggressive of males freeze in their tracks.

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Meghan Daum

The L.A. Times columnist talks with Paul about growing up and later rebelling in a household where music and academia were everything.  She talks about the pressure of starting a writing career in Manhattan and living a real-life Devil Wears Prada nightmare, where the idea of even living in a rundown building in a bohemian neighborhood became unattainable.   They talk about the epiphany of realizing her dreams were shallow, materialistic and unattainable, her move to Nebraska and the perspective and novel (The Quality of Life Report) that resulted.   A great episode for people who have a critical inner voice that never shuts up.   Meghan has written for The New YorkerHarper’s and Vogue and has contributed to This American Life.

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Rob Delaney (Voted #4 Ep of 2012)

Twitter superstar Rob Delaney opens up to Paul about his hilariously horrifying alcoholic bottom, his crushing bouts of depression and how he has adapted to live with what might have killed most people.   How can you resist a story that involves nuns, toothbrushes and jail?

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Erin

Which came first the hypochondria or the condition? The improvisor/actor  talks to Paul about the pain of losing her father at five and the plethora of physical pains she experiences that may or may not be self-induced. They also compare stories about what else? Anxiety over their genitalia, including her Vulvodinia, and the fear of not mattering.

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Martin Willis

Martin’s southern Maine family has been dealing in antiques for decades.  Not to mention pent-up rage and mental illness.   The podcaster/painter/antique-appraiser who lent Paul a helping hand when he was getting this podcast off the ground opens up about what it took to stop the cycle of fathers unleashing their anger on their sons.

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Alison Rosen

Writer, performer, t.v. host and sidekick on the Adam Carolla podcast, Alison has a life filled with successes.   So why can’t she feel it?  Why can’t she relax and enjoy her life?   Mammoth lies tiptoed around in childhood?  Growing up overweight?  Never being able to say the right thing at the right time?   Lots of good honest talk about relationships, parents and how to say what you mean.

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