Frank Relationships: Dr. Charles Rawlings, author of “It Really Is That Complicated”

Sunday, Oct. 27th 2013 11:32 PM


Do you wonder if all relationships are as complicated as your own? Do you often say to yourself, “it shouldn’t be this complicated?” According to our guest, it is … stay tuned as he breaks it down on this edition of Frank Relationships.

Guest: Dr. Charles Rawlings
Date: October 27, 2013

Frank: Do you wonder if all relationships are as complicated as your own? Do you often say to yourself, “it shouldn’t be this complicated?” Well, according to our guest, it is. Stay tuned as he breaks it down on this edition of Frank Relationships.

Welcome to Frank Relationships where we provide a candid fresh and frank look into relationships with goals of acceptance, respect and flexibility. I’m Frank Love and you can find me, my blog and my various social media incarnations at

Once again I’m joined by my co-host with the doctorate, Dr. Gayl.

Dr. Gayl: What’s up, Frank?

Frank: Good morning. She’s kind of nice to me last week, so I’m pretty clear we’re going to have a difficult day today.

Dr. Gayl: You thought last week was good?

Frank: I thought last–you were kind of nice to me last week.

Dr. Gayl: Right.

Frank: Plus I think it’s that time of the week. She just finished exercising.

Dr. Gayl: Exercise, exercise. It sounds like a Gene Simmons type of thing. Was that his name?

Frank: I don’t, Richard Simmons.

Dr. Gayl: Richard Simmons. Exercising. Sweating to the Oldies.

Frank: You do your marathons. You got your routine each week.

Dr. Gayl: But I mean, I work out, that sounds more–

Frank: You work out, okay.

Dr. Gayl: Thanks.

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If there’s such a thing as a real life know-it-all, today’s guest might be the top candidate. Another one, Dr. Gayl. Not just you.

Dr. Gayl: No, you just think that I think I know it all, so that means, you think I know it all. Go ahead.

Frank: Alright. I’ll try to unscramble my brain around that one. He’s an accomplished neurosurgeon and attorney. Put them together and you get a medical malpractice attorney. But that’s not it. He’s also an award-winning underwater photographer that conducts scientific exploratory expeditions. Say that three times. But finally, he’s also the author of the book that exposes women to the truth about a male’s perception of them and what they think, want and actually care about in a relationship.

Dr. Gayl: I like how you bolded that.

Frank: Would you–

Dr. Gayl: Go ahead.

Frank: The book is, Is it Really That Complicated and our guest is none other than, Dr. Charles Rawlings. Welcome to the show.

Dr. Rawlings: Thank you very much. It’s a pleasure being here.

Dr. Gayl: Good morning, Dr. Rawlings.

Dr. Rawlings: Good morning. How are you doing?

Dr. Gayl: I’m well. Thank you.

Frank: She’s trying–

Dr. Rawlings: It’s that time of the week, huh?

Dr. Gayl: It’s that time of the week.

Frank: She’s trying to butter you up. She said good morning and she’s trying to sound as though she’s a nice person–

Dr. Gayl: I am.

Frank: And a sweet heart. Be careful doc. I’ve read some of your book. In fact, I’ve got some things significantly highlighted in here that I think she will start throwing stuff either at you or me about. So, don’t go the okie doke.

Dr. Gayl: Well, Dr. Rawlings, I enjoyed your most recent interview that’s on your website, so hopefully we’ll have a pleasant one this morning.

Dr. Rawlings: Alright, excellent.

Frank: Alright, let’s get to it. You say in a relationship, the one who holds the power is the one who cares the least. Before I even ask, you got something to say, Dr. Gayl? You got a response to that?

Dr. Gayl: No, I actually agree.

Frank: Alright, Dr. Rawlings, what do you have to say? Shine some light on that.

Dr. Rawlings: Absolutely. That is one of the cornerstones of most relationships and that’s where some of the power struggles come in and some of the discord. People have various desires and wants and they have various items or activities that they like and they’ve been imbued with a lot of energy. And their partner or whatever the case may be, doesn’t necessarily feel the same way or have the same energy invested in that particular activity or that particular item. So, they’re able to say, “Look–” sort of like a trade-off, “I don’t particularly like that, I don’t really care about it and so for you to be able to do the activity or have the item, you have to convince me to go along with it.” So, they play the skeptic or play the reluctant person and that’s where they have the power.

The other person has to convince them, has to use energy–financial energy, financial motivation or whatever the case may be–to get the other person to agree or to go along with the activity. That’s the person who cares the least–has the most power.

In fact, a woman, while I was writing the book and I came up with that particular line, told me that her grandmother always told her. She goes, “Make sure you involved or marry a man who loves you more than you love him.”

Dr. Gayl: Dr. Rawlings, I was waiting for a pause, because my mama tells me that all the time. I completely agree. It’s true. My mama says, “He has to love you more than you love him. It’s great that you love him, but he has to love you more than you love him.”

Frank: In order to what?

Dr. Gayl: In order to be successful in the relationship and I think in order for him to hold his attention in the relationship and continue to want to do things. He has to want you more.

Frank; Dr. Rawlings, what’s your in order to what?

Dr. Rawlings; I think she’s right. In order to–

Dr. Gayl: Ding, ding, ding.

Dr. Rawlings: But also in order to be able to–I hate to use the word, but its there, manipulate him into doing–

Frank: Ding, ding, ding.

Dr. Rawlings: Exactly.

Dr. Gayl: That’s Frank’s favorite word, Dr. Rawlings.

Dr. Rawlings: Oh, okay.

Frank: It’s one of those things I pay close attention to and how I conduct myself and what I see in others.

Dr. Gayl: In his relationships.

Frank: Oh, boy.

Dr. Gayl: Right.

Frank: We’re off to a good start. I told you doctor. Okay, are we talking about activities and items or are we talking about relationships where the caring is more important or not caring is more important?

Dr. Rawlings: I think it extends to any of those items. I just use items and activities, because people can understand them easier. But it’s the same in relationships. Absolutely, it’s manipulative, but it’s the way the world works and that’s the way you keep your partners interested in certain ways.

In the ideal relationship where you’re both equal partners and you both have each other’s back, it doesn’t work so much. Everyone is human and people have more interest or more emotion toward certain items and towards their person than the other person does. It just works that way.

Frank: I don’t necessarily agree and I want to play with this, kick it back and forth with you for a moment. I think we invest in relationships and if you’re in a relationship, I don’t care which side of it that you’re on, if you’re-which partner you are, the person who appears to care the least or appears to care the most, somewhere along in there, you’re in that relationship, because you’re getting something out of it.

To say that the person who cares the least has the most power, I think the person who appears to care the least can appear to have the most power, but when you really peel back those layers, you might find that the person who appears to be the neediest has a significant amount of power too, once you get to a certain point. If it gets to the conversation about breaking-up or if it gets to a conversation about, “Hey I want–” whatever, whatever he or she might want. I’m not so sure that the power play is so cut and dry or that it’s so readily apparent. Sometimes the power can be quiet power.

Dr. Rawlings: I would absolutely agree. In fact, there’s a portion in my book that talks about that. It’s like, the needy person. I use a financial example where in the couple, one of them has sort of advocated financial mechanics to another person. If that person screws up the finances, the other person jumps on them immediately and says, “Look you’re stupid and you did this wrong,” and they’re like, “Well, you told me to do it and so I’m the one that cares the most.”

But you’re absolutely right. Sometimes the neediest person is using it as sort of a passive-aggressive type power play. So, there are all sorts of subtleties in there. It’s like when you say, “appears to be,” that’s all perception–

Frank: Yes.

Dr. Rawlings: And once you start, once you start peeling back the layers and start getting down into sort of the psychodynamics and the baggage that these people are playing with in their relationships, then yeah, you can come up with a whole different set of subtle energy streams or power plays. However you want to talk about it, absolutely.

But for the most part, when you look at a relationship on its face, the person who cares the least is the one that’s doing most of the manipulating the person who cares the most.

Frank: Wait, I’ve got two questions. So, the piece that you just mentioned–you may have a crier in the relationship and the crier could be the person who gets the–we’ll call it a woman, this time. I’m very clear that the crier doesn’t have to be a woman. Dr. Gayl, okay? You with me?

Dr. Gayl: I’m with you.

Frank: Okay, then we’ll just say, the crier is a woman in the relationship I’m talking about. So, the guys comes home and let’s say he comes home late and she hates that he comes home late and she cries and she cries on the phone to her friends, but that’s a power play. That’s a way to get attention from him. It’s a way to get him to change what he’s doing. It’s a way to get her friends to sympathize with him. There’s power in appearing weak.

Dr. Rawlings: Okay, absolutely, but what if he comes in and totally ignores her crying, because he–

Dr. Gayl: Right.

Dr. Rawlings: Cares a lot less than she does and so her power is impotent, because he cares least.

Dr. Gayl: Right.

Dr. Rawlings: He’s like, “Ahh, stop crying.”

Dr. Gayl: He could care less that she’s crying. Who cares?

Dr. Rawlings: Exactly.

Frank: Right, but her friends don’t care less.

Dr. Gayl: But it doesn’t matter, because her friends aren’t in the relationship and they don’t have any power at all.

Dr. Rawlings: Absolutely.

Frank; It does matter, because she’s able to get that attention from her friends, so if she can’t get it from–

Dr. Gayl: She doesn’t care about the attention from her friends. She cares about the attention from him. They’re just her sounding board. She could care less about those friends. What she wants is attention from him and so–

Frank: No.

Dr. Gayl: No, really. She wants the attention from him. The friends are just a sounding board and like her, “Go girl, you better go.” Who cares about that? What she really wants is the attention from him, the caring, the whatever from him. But if could care less about it then her whining and crying and complaining are not manipulative strategies, because they aren’t working. They can only be manipulative strategies if they work.

Frank: No, that’s not true.

Dr. Rawlings: Absolutely, and if they don’t work, then she’s going to start changing strategies. She’s going to start withholding sex or ultimately going out while he’s not there. And then, the tables will be turned, then he comes home and she’s not there, he starts crying and she walks in and says, “Ahh, stop crying. I don’t care.”

Frank: If she didn’t care about her friends, she wouldn’t do that. She wouldn’t vent to her friends. We do things because we want a result, so even with her friends. The primary result she may want is, not so much attention from him, but she wants him to do what she wants him to do–

Dr. Gayl: Right. But her friends have absolutely nothing to do with it. They are so obsolete they–

Frank: No, if she’s whining to them, if she’s crying to them, they have a part in the cast.

Dr. Gayl: Okay, Frank, but you’re wrong.

Dr. Rawlings: I agree with Frank. But her friends are secondary.

Dr. Gayl: Right.

Dr. Rawlings: It’s a secondary game her friends.
Frank: I agree with that.

Dr. Gayl: Right.

Dr. Rawlings: Yes.

Dr. Gayl: Totally secondary game.

Frank: Okay.

Dr. Rawlings: Yeah.

Frank: And there was something else. What else was it, Dr. Gayl?

Dr. Gayl: I don’t know. I left my crystal ball in the car.

Frank: What promoted you, what prompted you to write this book?

Dr. Rawlings: That’s pretty interesting. After I got divorced, I started going out and dating some folks and I was just astounded at some of the craziness that’s out there and some of the ploys and the manipulation and all that, and so I came back and I was discussing with my friends who a lot of them are women and they were like, “You know, we agree with you. Instead of telling us, go write this thing. Go write this book.” And actually one weekend I got a group of friends together–four or five of us– and we sat down and in a couple of hours we came up with all the chapters and-

Frank: Males or females?

Dr. Rawlings: Mostly females.

Frank: Wow. Okay.

Dr. Rawlings: Yeah, we came up with the chapters and we had an outline for the book. So, I started writing.

Frank: You talk a lot about manipulation and that’s interesting, because so do I. What is manipulation to you?

Dr. Rawlings: The use of some power to suddenly or not-so-suddenly change the behavior of another person.

Frank: Uh-huh. Now, okay I give you a dollar, because I want you rake my lawn. Is that manipulative? That dollar is a power.

Dr. Gayl: No, because someone is gaining.

Dr. Rawlings: That’s a contract.

Dr. Gayl: Yeah.

Dr. Rawlings: That’s a contract. That’s–

Dr. Gayl: The receiver is gaining something.

Frank: Okay.

Dr. Rawlings: Exactly.

Frank: Let me see. If I ask you to do something–Dr. Gayl, be on time, is that manipulative?

Dr. Rawlings: No, I don’t think that’s manipulative. You’re expressing a request. You’re expressing a request that the person, in this particular case, be on time for a show.

Frank: Okay.

Dr. Rawlings: That’s sort of business etiquette and probably just being polite.

Frank: Okay, so what about, “If you don’t get home before midnight, I’m not going to have sex with you tonight?” Is that manipulative?

Dr. Rawlings: That would be–

Dr. Gayl: That’s manipulative.

Dr. Rawlings: Somewhat manipulative, yeah. You’re withholding something or you’re influencing their actions for your benefit based upon a threat to them in a way.

Frank: And when is it not manipulative? When can you get what you want and not manipulate?

Dr. Rawlings: I think that there’s an element of manipulation in almost everything that’s not from a financial contract standpoint. It’s just more open in certain ways.

Dr. Gayl: And I like to add, in your example Frank, there’s no secondary gain, I would think is not manipulation. You know what I mean? Like, you withholding sex if I don’t get home by midnight, you’re also gaining something. You want the person to be there by midnight, so you’re going to gain something by being manipulative.

Dr. Rawlings: Right.

Frank: What do I get?

Dr. Gayl: You gained them being home by midnight.

Frank: If they do it.

Dr. Gayl: Right.

Frank: Okay.

Dr. Rawlings: If they do it. Alright, I’ll throw in a twist.

Frank: Alright.

Dr. Rawlings: Your scenario, “You’re not home by midnight I won’t have sex with you.” What if the guy says or the woman says, “Okay, if I’m not home by midnight, I’ll pay you a $100 to have sex with me?”

Dr. Gayl: Oh, wow.

Dr. Rawlings: Is that manipulative or is that just compensating the person for being late?

Frank: That’s a compromise.

Dr. Rawlings: A compromise?

Dr. Gayl: That is not a compromise.

Frank: Yeah, sure it is.

Dr. Gayl: What the hell kind of compromise you got going on, Frank? That is not a compromise.

Frank: If this then that, okay, well what about this? “If I do come in after midnight, will you have sex with me, if I give you a $100?” That’s a negotiation.

Dr. Rawlings: Okay, now I’ll throw another twist in here that’s even more interesting, because this is what happens all the time in marriages and relationships. “Okay, honey, I know you’ve told me that you won’t have sex with me if I’m later than midnight. I’m really sorry, I’m later than midnight, here’s a dozen roses,” and she has sex with him. Is that any different than paying her a $100?

Dr. Gayl: No.

Dr. Rawlings: I don’t think so either.

Frank: Uh-huh.

Dr. Rawlings: That’s the title of one of my chapters.

Frank: If we look at, okay we switch gears on manipulation a little bit. My concept of manipulation is, wanting something but being unwilling to state what it is you want. Working towards getting something, but being unwilling to make it clear to whoever you’re talking to, that you want that thing. You’re actually acting like you want something else.

In the example given about sex, she really wants or he or whatever–really wants the partner to be home by midnight, and because they want interact. We’ll say she for this example. She wants to–

Dr. Gayl: Can you say he? She cried in the last scenario? Can you say he, please? Jesus.

Frank: Alright.

Dr. Rawlings: So, he’s going to withhold sex.

Dr. Gayl: He’s whining because she’s out with her girlfriends.

Frank: Okay.

Dr. Gayl: And he’s whining.

Frank: Alright, so he is upset or whining or crying. He’s the crier today, because–.

Dr. Gayl: And then she’s going to leave him, because he’s a crier.

Dr. Rawlings: He’s going to withhold sex, if she’s not there before midnight.

Frank: Alright, stick with the example guys.

Dr. Rawlings: Why don’t you just say, “Okay, I won’t go down on you?” How’s that?

Frank: Okay. Oh boy, I see we got a couple live ones in the studio today.

Dr. Gayl: You have dropped the “f” bomb and saying “went down” in like within 15 minutes.

Frank: So, he wants her to be home. Now, mind you, people don’t just want our partners to be home. We want to interact with them or we want to know that they’re not out with somebody else or whatever the case may be, but wanting them to be home on the surface is not what I see as what we really want.

If he’s saying he wants her home by midnight, it’s not really that that he’s after. He’s after that other thing and if he’s not willing to say what that other thing is, yes, I think he’s being manipulative. However–

Dr. Gayl: Or he just might not know how to communicate effectively. Why does it have to be manipulation?

Frank: Well, we often manipulate when we don’t know how to communicate effectively.

Dr. Rawlings: I agree with you. He may be a poor communicator. But also there’s a third reason. It just may be a power play. He just may want her home, because he wants her home and it’s a power play.

Frank: Yeah.

Dr. Rawlings. He just may want her home, because he wants her home, and it’s a power play.

Frank: Well, he wants her home for what? He wants her home, because he wants to know–

Dr. Rawlings: Where she is.

Frank: Yeah, he wants her where he can control her.

Dr. Rawlings: Yes.

Frank: He doesn’t feel like he can control her if she’s out.

Dr. Gayl: That’s what he just said–power play.

Frank: But it’s about the control. It is a power play. I give it that, but it’s still manipulative.

Dr. Gayl: No, it’s not.

Frank: Yes, it is.
Dr. Gayl: Move on.

Frank: Psychodynamic horrors, what in the world is that?

Dr. Gayl: Right, what is that, because I’ve never heard of that?

Frank: But admittedly, I can see how you could call me and Dr. Gayl’s relationship a psychodynamic horror, even though I don’t know what it is.

Dr. Gayl: Even though you have no clue what psychodynamic means.

Frank: No, but I do know horror. That rings true. I get that part. Okay, doc.

Dr. Rawlings: It is referring primarily to the psychic traumas and the baggage that people bring into a relationship that turns it into a group of psychodynamic horrors, because each person has had some sort of psychic trauma that they haven’t dealt with or are bringing baggage into the relationship and they expect their partner to fix it. Their partner can’t fix it. That person can’t communicate. It’s all those different strings. It’s just the psychodynamic horrors of a relationship.

Just like what you were talking about a minute ago. The man may want his woman home, and there’s all sorts of reasons why, but he can’t communicate that to her. He can’t communicate effectively. Whereas, if he looked down into himself and said, “You know, I have a fear of abandonment. My mom left and didn’t come back until 10:00 P.M. night every night and I was alone and scared.” If he recognizes that, then he could talk to his partner and say, “Look I appreciate that you work late, but you know, I’m really upset if you don’t come in, because this is what happened to me as a child.” He may not recognize it. He may not know it. He may not be able to communicate it. He may not know what he’s doing and that’s part of the psychodynamic horrors, because he doesn’t know.

Dr. Gayl: Are we saying psychodynamic literally, meaning unconsciously knowing or from childhood or infancy, those types of things that you said baggage, you bring it into the present and the partner isn’t aware of it, because it’s unconscious?

Dr. Rawlings: I think it’s unconscious, subconscious and conscious. I think that these psychodynamic horrors range all the way from childhood traumas, up to some sort of trauma in the last relationship. Something happened in the relationship and the person was hurt.

You hear all the time, “I’m hurt. I’m now hiding. I’m in my shell. I don’t want to get hurt again,” that sort of stuff and so that flavors your entire interaction with the other person. It ranges all the way from subconscious, unconscious to your conscious, absolutely.

Dr. Gayl: Okay.

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You’re listening to Frank Relationships. We’re talking with Dr. Charles Rawlings, Neurosurgeon, Lawyer and author of, It Really is That Complicated. Excuse me, It’s not that complicated, is it doc–where I should be messing up the title. Dr. Rawlings, book explores the complexities of men and women and offers a real take on what relationships have to offer us. Dr. Rawlings, how can your listeners find you and your book?

Dr. Rawlings: It’s pretty easy. The book you can find at Barnes and Nobles. It’s on Amazon. There’s a Kindle version, a soft back, a hard back. They can go to my various websites. There’s a website: They can go to my website: and directly order from me. They can order it directly from the publishing house, Authorhouse, which is a division Penguin Publishing. There are all sorts of ways they can reach me.

Frank: Alright.

Dr. Gayl: Okay, Dr. Rawlings–

Dr. Rawlings: Yes ma’am.

Dr. Gayl: On your most recent interview you stated that, if you have the information you have now, you felt like maybe possibly you and your ex wife would still be together. Do you still feel that way?

Frank: Oh, let’s hear it. I don’t feel that way at all.

Dr. Rawlings: That’s an excellent question. I like that. It’s a possibility, yes, just because we might have been able to work out some of our differences, although I somehow doubt it. But it’s a possibility, yes.

Dr. Gayl: Okay.

Dr. Rawlings: I would admit that.

Dr. Gayl: Okay, well with that said, what is it–and I assume that the book is about as you state that the truth about a male’s perspective that women should know. Do you think that–whose fault is it? Is it the women’s fault? Is it the male’s fault? What is it that men don’t know about women and vice versa? How can we come together to create a better relationship?

Frank: Well, whose fault is it that what happens?

Dr. Gayl: The demise in relationships.

Frank: Okay.

Dr. Gayl: Yeah, just in general.

Frank: Whose fault is it that they break-up–that relationships end? Okay.

Dr. Rawlings: To answer your question honestly, I don’t think there’s a broad stroke answer in terms of it’s always the males fault or it’s always the females fault. It’s a person’s fault and I think the main problem is communication and not knowing yourself. Not being honest with the other person. Not being able to communicate what you need. Not being able to communicate and give the other person what they need.

If you’re honest with yourself and you know yourself and you can effectively communicate with the other person and you both are partners, then the relationship is based on very solid ground and any real difficulties that come up, you can sit down with your partner and discuss it and communicate with each other and trust each other.

Frank: Dr. Gayl, is there information you have gained over the last few years, since your divorce that has you ever think, that if you would have known this then, you would still be married?

Dr. Gayl: I would never still be married that person.

Frank: That’s–

Dr. Gayl: I probably never would have gotten married to that person if I had the information I have now.

Dr. Rawlings: But what’s the information that changed?

Dr. Gayl: That’s a good question, Dr. Rawlings. None of the information–

Frank: Let’s hold. She said that’s a good question Dr. Rawlings, but Dr. Rawlings, I’m going to pause this, because I deserve some credit there too, because his question was an off-shoot of what I said.

Dr. Gayl: You didn’t want me to give you some props?

Frank: Give me props.

Dr. Gayl: For what, I forgot?

Frank: I forgot what I should give you props for. It was me that asked you about knowing what you know now, would you still be married–and then he asked a spin-off question–

Dr. Gayl: But his question was so more relevant than yours. Like yours is just like, “Would you still be there?” Hell no. But did the information change? That’s a good question.

Frank: I don’t believe this.

Dr. Gayl: So, the information did not–yours was like a surface question. His was deeper. Why? Because he’s a neurosurgeon.

Frank: You see what I have to deal with here? This is absolute abuse. Can I get away with it? I can’t really–

Dr. Gayl: No, you can’t really get away with that.

Frank: Not even me. Not even what I’m playing. Alright doc, whoever was talking, please continue.

Dr. Gayl: I think that’s questions that people need to ask themselves Dr. Rawlings. “Did the information change?” The information did not change, it’s just that I have more information and maybe I didn’t know the questions to ask or the information–maybe I blocked it or for whatever defensives I put up didn’t access the information. The information didn’t change. I jut didn’t access the information. That’s the answer.

Dr. Rawlings: That’s fair enough. Did you learn more about yourself?

Dr. Gayl: I did, absolutely.

Dr. Rawlings: Yeah.

Frank: Give us something. Like what? What did you learn about yourself?

Dr. Gayl: That’s a broad question. You have to come back to me.

Frank: Okay, alright, just diss the host. Is that what we’re doing today? Doc, what is–.

Dr. Gayl: It’s all love Frank. It’s all love.

Frank: Give me a positive take-home from your book. What do you want people to know?

Dr. Rawlings: The positive take-home is in the last chapter or so. It’s that if you’re able to know yourself and have no fears, since there really is nothing to fear around you and communicate with folks effectively–especially the person in your relationship–then you will build a solid relationship. But you have to know yourself and you have to have no fear. Push your boundaries, learn about yourself, be honest with yourself and that way you will be able to have much better relationships in almost anything you do.

Dr. Gayl: I agree, and this by no means is promoting the OWN network or Oprah. However, these last two weekends she’s had on her Super Soul Sunday, she’s had the topic of vulnerability and that, I think, is a spin-off of what you stated Dr. Rawlings, and that people are afraid to be vulnerable, because they are fearful of what the other person may say, and they have built up these defenses and these defense mechanisms that have, in their opinion helped them over the years,, but really it hasn’t helped them.

It’s like how do you become vulnerable to this other person–this relationship that you’re trying to build? So the person–I forget her name–She’s Dr. someone, she stated that–

Frank: Really, she made an impact on you, right?

Dr. Gayl: But she did, I just can’t recall her name. At any rate, she stated that putting your status about your feelings on Facebook is not being vulnerable. Being vulnerable to your partner is stating your fears, your defenses. Even if it’s crazy and it sounds insane, “This is still what I want to do and where I want this relationship to go,” despite how you feel like the other person may react.
That’s like me saying, Frank, “I really love you. We’re in love. Let’s move forward in this relationship,” without being afraid that you’re going to say, “Really, Dr. Gayl? I’m not feeling you like that?” You know what I mean.

Frank: No comment. Alright, let’s close the show. Here. Run the song.

Dr. Gayl: That’s how you really probably react to. Women pour their hearts out to you and you’re like, “Uh, let’s keep it moving.”

Frank: What is, “knowing yourself?” What does that mean? You hear it a lot. I might even say it. What does it mean?

Dr. Rawlings: It means that you recognize your own faults. You recognize your strengths, you recognize why you act certain ways. Why you’re passive-aggressive in certain areas. Why you can’t communicate in certain areas. Why you feel some emotions in certain areas. You have to be able to pinpoint your feelings and your reactions to those feelings and stop them if they’re becoming–I wouldn’t say dangerous, but unhealthy.

It’s like when we were talking about a few minutes ago, the guy whose trying to control his wife or girlfriend by saying, “You got to be home,” and there’s probably something deeper or shallow, that he’s not recognizing himself and not being comfortable with the fact that his wife or girlfriend may be just out working hard. But he sees that as some sort of threat and he can’t communicate that effectively, because he doesn’t see that in himself.

Frank: There’s one thing I think you left out that’s appropriate to add, and that’s, recognizing what you want. Knowing yourself has to do about being clear with what it is you want also, no matter what the response of your partner or other people are going to be, whether it’s politically correct or not, all of that good stuff, but that–

Dr. Rawlings: Absolutely.

Frank: Yeah.

Dr. Gayl: And being able to verbalize it. Like, not just knowing what you want. So, I can know what I want and not tell you or the other person in a relationship, but knowing what you want and being able to–I don’t want to say confront, because that sounds like you’re ready to fight, but ready to have a sit-down conversation stating, “I want this, this and this,” and whether you think that the other person is going to walk away or accept it.

Dr. Rawlings: Right, and you got to be honest with yourself and you can’t have any fear about that other person’s reaction.

Frank: Yeah.

Dr. Rawlings: You’ve got to say, “This is what I need,” and I dislike the word, “need” or “should,” but it’s like, “I feel like I need to be more emotional with you or more intimate with you or we need to spend more time together.” And you have to be able to, you’re right, see that in yourself and more importantly effectively communicate that with your partner. Absolutely.

Frank: What comes to mind as something that you’ve caught flack from, that people might feel is more controversial. I like a little controversy every once in awhile? You got something on that?

Dr, Rawlings: I mean it’s pretty obvious when you look at the title of my chapters. The most controversial one is that–well, there are two, all women want what they can’t have and then all women are prostitutes.

Frank: Oh. Let’s go, alright. All women are prostitutes. Let’s hear it.

Dr. Rawlings: That’s very controversial. In fact, some of my female friends are like–and a couple of them were escorts themselves, they’re like that–

Dr. Gayl: Wow.

Dr. Rawlings: “That chapter is really going to polarize people, believe me.” It’s true, but when you read through the chapter what I’m getting at is, more of a power play. It’s more of manipulation both by men and women; women more traditionally, because they have the sex that they can withhold. Like we were using the example just a few minutes ago about, “no sex if you come in later than midnight.” “Okay, what if I pay you a $100 to have sex, then it becomes possibly okay,” or it converts into here red roses or here’s a Tiffany diamond ring or whatever the case maybe, so you’re exchanging sex for some sort of an object.

Frank: What’s the story with withholding sex? I’ve heard many stories about that and I can’t really say, I’ve ever seen that experience. I was married 10 years the first time.

Dr. Gayl: They’ve always laid it down for you, Frank.

Frank: It’s just not been, I have not–

Dr. Gayl: “No one has ever withheld sex from me, because I’m just like that.”

Frank: I–I–

Dr. Gayl: How narcissistic is that?

Frank: That is not narcissistic?

Dr. Rawlings: Narcissistic was the word that passed through my mine too.

Frank: It’s just not been my experience. That’s all I’m saying. It hasn’t been my experience. My experience is women like sex as much as men. We often are not willing to put it in a woman’s face like that or say it, but that’s been my experience. I’m not trying to create a headline. It’s just my experience. Do you like sex, Dr. Gayl?

Dr. Gayl: Don’t try and you know–just go with what you were saying.

Frank: Okay, alright. I do. I mean, you know, it’s not–what can I say?

Dr. Gayl: Don’t pull me into your narcissism. Just go ahead with what you were saying.

Frank: What do you think, Dr. Rawlings? Is there anything to what I just said?

Dr. Gayl: I forgot your main point. What was it? What was your primary question?

Frank: I asked the question. You don’t need to remember.

Dr. Rawlings: The main point that he was telling us about how no woman has ever withheld sex from him.

Dr. Gayl: Okay, what’s the deal withholding sex?

Dr. Rawlings: Right, exactly.

Frank: Well, the bottom–

Dr. Rawlings: I think–go ahead.

Dr. Gayl: No, go ahead, Dr. Rawlings.

Frank: Yes, Dr. Rawlings.

Dr. Rawlings: I was going to say there is a fundamental difference between men and women from a sexual standpoint. Males, unless they’re on drugs or have some physical problem, men are easy. Fifty two strokes, fifty seven strokes, it doesn’t matter, if it’s with their hand, doll or a watermelon. It’s going to happen.

Dr. Gayl: A watermelon.

Frank: Oh, boy.

Dr. Gayl: It is juicy and wet–the watermelon.

DR. Rawlings: Women are totally different. From a physiological standpoint, from an anatomical standpoint, they’re totally different than men. A lot of it is mental and they see it also as a power play.

A good friend of mine and I use this analogy in the book, looked at me and she said, “You know, at their most complicated men, from a sexual standpoint are microwave ovens. Most women, however, are like the cockpit of an Fl6 Fighter Jet and you have to know exactly what levers to push and when and how and all that sort of stuff before they enjoy sex.”

Sure the act, they can do it. My friends tell me, “Yeah, sure. It’s a natural act, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that we’re enjoying while we’re doing it. If you look at the statistics, 28 percent of all women have never had an orgasm and 78 percent cannot achieve orgasms through intercourse. But you tell me that women like it, not necessarily, not like males.

Frank: I’m not there. Hey, well I guess–

Dr. Gayl: You are just the cream of the crop.

Frank: Jeff, you got any–Jeff is not going–Jeff is a man behind the boards

Dr. Gayl: Jeff is happily married. He is like chilling, not trying to allow you to bring–not trying to allow you–

Frank: Help me out Jeff. What are your thoughts?

Jeff: I’ll mention one thing. Regardless of enjoyment, sex is a weapon. Doctor, how about afterwards, coming back and saying, “See, what I did for you? Now what can you do for me?” So, using it sort of not as an ultimatum and after the fact kind of thing.

Frank: From the woman’s point?

Jeff: From the woman’s point.

Dr. Gayl: But would that really work though?

Frank: Oh, just let him answer.

Dr. Rawlings: That’s an interesting twist. That’s much more of an open power play there. It’s not so much manipulative. It’s more, “This is what I did for you and now what are you going to do for me?” I’ve never really seen that, but I think that’s an interesting twist.

Jeff: Look what I did last night, that’ll never happen again unless you do this.

Dr. Rawlings: Yeah, absolutely. That’s the implied threat. “This is what you can have, but it’s not going to happen again, if you don’t do this,” and that’s an implied threat. It’s a very open power issue. I think that’s interesting.

Dr. Gayl: Yeah, but I just don’t think I would do that.

Frank: You don’t think you would. It’s not that you wouldn’t. You don’t think you would. You’re not sure.

Dr. Rawlings: Have you ever done it before?

Dr. Gayl: I’ve never done it before and that’s what I’m saying. I don’t think I would, because if we’re talking about power and I have to admit I do like a little power–

Frank: I’m impressed. You went there. Alright.

Dr. Gayl: I would kind of–in my head make me feel like I’m losing power, if I went ahead and did whatever and then said, “Hey, I did that. Now what,” because I think the other person could be like, “Well hell, it was good, but–”

Frank: What if he wasn’t like it was good?

Dr. Rawlings: Yeah, but there’s a watermelon next to it.

Frank: Oh, boy. Dr. Rawlings, you’re time enough for us.

You’re listening to Frank Relationships and we’re talking with Dr. Charles Rawlings, neurosurgeon, lawyer and author of, It Really is That Complicated. Dr. Rawlings, tell us again how we can find you and your book.

Dr. Rawlings: My book can found on Amazon, Barnes and Noble. My websites are:, You can order it from the publisher directly, Authorhouse, which is a division of Penguin, or you can order it through the websites by contacting me or through the online Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

Frank: Why are women attracted to the bad boy type?

Dr. Rawlings: Primarily, because it’s a challenge. The nice guys are seen as sort of dull and boring and while they give you security, women really don’t necessarily want security until it’s too late. They want to be challenged. They’re actually somewhat of a masochistic breed.

Dr. Gayl: Okay.

Frank: What, doc, you going to let that slide? You’ve been mighty nice to him. Come on, that’s a jab.

Dr. Gayl: Dr. Rawlings, I have two questions. What is too late? When is it too late?

Dr. Rawlings: When is it too late? It’s like a guy that has been showing them attention, that’s a nice guy. He’s been texting them, flowers, decent dates and she’s been sort of ignoring him or not responding to what he’s been talking about and he just gets frustrated and goes away. And then, she realizes, “Wow, I really did like going out to dinner with him, he was fun, but now he’s not around so I can’t get hold of him.” That’s what I mean when it’s too late.

Dr. Gayl: Okay. I didn’t know if you meant, age-frame too late.

Dr. Rawlings: No, I’ve never gone with the age thing.

Frank: That’s all you’re going to say? He said, he said something that was–

Dr. Gayl: I mean it’s kind of true. I remember back in the day, when Tyra Banks show was on and she had these guys there and they were so-called good guys, but I think they were pushovers. They were stating that– but they were pushovers, because the one guy was like, “The women want a Jay Z that went to Harvard and that doesn’t exist.”

Frank: So, you–

Dr. Gayl: Go ahead, Dr. Rawlings.

Dr. Rawlings: No, I was going to say, that brings up to mind of a female friend of mine just the other day, was talking about this thing called a manicorn, sort of a unicorn. It’s the male of myth that’s out there that will give a woman everything she wants and it’s just that. It’s a manicorn. It’s a myth. It doesn’t exist.

Dr. Gayl: To kind of piggy back, since Frank wants me to say something so badly. Dr. Rawlings, last week Frank shut me down so badly, I almost left, but now he’s giving me the green light so I need to talk when I can talk. So now, I think that women that have so-called power or that are in–what’s the word I’m looking for–professional women maybe–

Dr. Rawlings: Uh-huh.

Dr. Gayl: They are typically the women that do want a counterpart or a partner who is also of equal power or that can kind of be that bad boy type image that can tell them–because they’re so busy at work all day long in controlled empower in leadership position, telling other people what to do that at home, you kind of don’t want that. You want someone that can–

Frank: Yeah, say it.

Dr. Gayl: Kind of–

Dr. Rawlings: Go ahead.

Dr. Gayl: Display that power, but that doesn’t-

Frank: Not to piss you off.

Dr. Gayl: Right.

Frank: Alright, so you want–

Dr. Gayl: You want someone that can challenge you.

Frank: So, doc. I’m talking to you, Dr. Gayl.

Dr. Gayl: Okay.

Frank: You want power over a man that’s powerful, because you said you got your power thing. You do like a little power.

Dr. Gayl: I do like a little power.

Frank: Uh-huh.

Dr. Gayl: But I don’t want someone that I can walk over, because to me, I’m like, “Really? You’re going to let me say that or do that? That’s not attractive.”

Frank: You’re going to let me get away with–

Dr. Gayl: Women do want the good guy. They do want someone that’s going to bring them flowers and text them all day long, but they also don’t want someone that they can walk over.

Frank: Well, why not walk over them? If you don’t want to walk over a guy whether he’s a good guy or bad guy, why not walk around him? You want to find out if he’s going to let you walk over him? Is that the thing? Yes. Oh, whoa, we shut her up that quick. Oh, doc, you got something to say–

Dr. Gayl: No, I was thinking. You didn’t shut me up, Frank. I was thinking.

Frank: Dr. Rawlings, you got anything you want to say about that?

Dr. Rawlings: I’m just listening to this exchange. I think she’s pointing out some of the truisms in my book. She’s looking for a manicorn. She wants some guy who to text her and gives her flowers, but is on the same level in terms of her power and that’s very difficult to find, because she’s professional.

There are plenty of professional men out there, but they haven’t gotten into their positions of power or by being pushovers and sending people flowers and texting people. They’ve gotten in their positions of power by power plays and land grabs and all that sort of stuff and worked up to the professional ranks just like she did.

Dr. Gayl: I’m sorry, Dr. Rawlings, go ahead. I thought you were done.

Dr. Rawlings: I was going to say. They’re not necessarily going to be the ones showing you all this romanticism or affection, because they’re going to be just as hard-nosed as you are.

Dr. Gayl: And they also don’t want someone equal to them. They want a pushover. They don’t want someone that’s going to challenge them.

Frank: Who is they?

Dr. Gayl: Those men. Those men, your counterparts or–I go to all–go ahead.

Dr. Rawlings: I think in some instances, you’re absolutely correct, but in other instances, these men are actually looking for someone who will challenge them, who will hold their own with them? I think it’s a minority, but I think it’s a large minority.

Dr. Gayl: I think it’s a minority. Like a real minority.

Frank: I want to hear. You’ve had an opportunity to think, Dr. Gayl. I would like to hear your response to and you don’t want a guy that you can just walk over and I say, “Why not just walk around him?”

Dr. Gayl: What do you mean by walk around them, because that’s boring too?

Frank: That’s the answer. It’s boring. It’s boring–

Dr. Gayl: It’s boring.

Frank: To just walk around them. You want a little conflict. You want a little give and take.

Dr. Gayl: Not conflict, but no not conflict, but something that’s definitely going to challenge me. I don’t think anyone in a professional–

Frank: There’s conflict in any challenge.

Dr. Gayl: Maybe.

Frank: Alright.

Dr. Gayl: I say maybe. However, that–

Frank: Okay, don’t get me too many props.

Dr. Gayl: I’m not speaking for all women, so I’m just saying, for me, that’s boring. I like a challenge. I like something that’s different. I’m in a profession that changes and challenges me everyday, so I wouldn’t want a relationship that’s when I come home that’s going to be the same dry, boring, same thing we did yesterday, day after day. That’s boring, who wants that?

Frank: Okay, alright. Doc, why are relationships really that complicated? Let’s bring it home.

Dr. Gayl: Oh, and wait, before you answer that Dr. Rawlings, you did state that–I think you said this, the reason, a lot of reasons why people break-up or they divorce is, because they get bored. Right?

Dr. Rawlings: Absolutely.

Dr. Gayl: So, that validates my answer too, Frank, because who wants a boring humdrum relationship that’s dry?

Frank: That’s real. I wouldn’t want a boring co-host. I appreciate you. I must say that.

Dr. Gayl: Why? Man we need to play that back. That needs to be on the intro. Like, “I appreciate you.”

Frank: It’s buried near the end of today’s show where it belongs.

Dr. Rawlings: See, he’s acknowledging what he needs. He needs a good feisty co-host.

Dr. Gayl: Uh-huh.

Dr. Rawlings: So he has to appreciate you.

Dr. Gayl: Yeah. See, so Frank, you need someone that challenges you as well. Come on.

Frank: I enjoy the challenge. I actually do and I’ll tell anybody that. I enjoy good back and forth, good banter. That’s important to me. I mean, you know. That’s why we have this show. That’s why we have good guests.

Dr. Gayl: Ahh, that was our moment. We had a moment.

Dr. Rawlings: Let’s not get weepy.

Frank: Okay.

Dr. Gayl: I’m still a woman, Dr. Rawlings, and that’s why it’s not easy. That’s why you had to write your book.

Frank: So doc, why are relationships really that complicated?

Dr. Rawlings: I think this entire show has shown that: bad communication skills, manipulation, sexual differences, not understanding yourself, not necessarily liking yourself, not being able to communicate what you need in your life, etc. Relationships are clearly that complicated for all sorts of reasons.

Frank: Do you have children?

Dr. Rawlings: Yes, I do.

Frank: At some point, I guess you’ve resigned yourself to them having relationships some day. Does that scare you?

Dr. Rawlings: My daughter is 16 and she’s had one before–recently and it was an interesting relationship. It was fine with me. My two boys are 13; they’re twins.

Dr. Gayl: I want twins–sorry.

Dr. Rawlings: No, you don’t.

Dr. Gayl: No, I wanted one shot and done, Dr. Rawlings.

Frank: Does that mean you want two children?

Dr. Gayl: Well I’m just saying, if I had to have two, I would want to do it in that one chance, because I only want to get pregnant once. That’s just a burden. Who wants to do that twice? Sorry.

Frank: Someone who wants two children.

Dr. Rawlings: You may love it so much, you want to do it the second time.

Dr. Gayl: I’m projecting all my blockage for motherhood.

Frank: Yeah, you don’t even have one. How do you know you won’t like being pregnant?

Dr. Gayl: I know.

Dr. Rawlings: Yeah, *(inaudible) 56:49.

Dr. Gayl: Because I want to get back to working out.

Dr. Rawlings: Well, you can work out while you’re pregnant.

Frank: Yes, up until what–the eighth month, or something like that, if your condition–

Dr. Rawlings: Yes, up to eight months. Yeah.

Frank: Yeah.

Dr. Gayl: Says the two men that don’t have to carry children.

Frank: Says the two men with eight children between us.

Dr. Rawlings: Oh, wow.

Frank: I mean, you would think we know a little bit more about it than you do.

Dr. Gayl: You probably don’t. Go ahead, Dr. Rawlings.

Frank: What’s he going ahead? You didn’t ask him anything. You just want to switch the subject.

Dr. Gayl: He was answering your question. I rudely interrupted him.

Dr. Rawlings: Yes, my two boys are 13 and they are developing interest in girls, and so I’m trying to teach them what a gentleman does to respect women.

Frank: And what is that?

Dr. Rawlings: Be polite and respectful of them, and like I said, know yourself and don’t be afraid of them. Just treat them like everyday people and not the strange female things that you think they are.

Frank: What’s your message to your daughter?

Dr. Gayl: And too, Dr. Rawlings, so I was listening to my book on the way here from my book club. The woman was saying–

Frank: What’s the name of the book?

Dr. Gayl: The name of the book is, the name of the book is, Gone Girl. It’s a thriller. I love it. It’s really good. Its suspenseful. At any rate, she staged her disappearance or her death to stage it to seem like her husband killed her. It’s so good. However, she was reflecting back to when they first met and she was stating that she was pretending to be the fun girl and the girl that all guys want, and if you think that the guy doesn’t want the fun girl, you’re lying to yourself and the fun girl is the one who goes to bars and she drinks and she doesn’t care about how many calories are in whatever and eats these salty fried foods and doesn’t care if he doesn’t come to hang out with her friends. That’s the fun girl–has these different crazy sexual positions. Those are the fun girls.

She said that she lied to her husband, because that’s not who she really is. She really wants someone–and she also lied to herself saying that she didn’t want someone that was going to hold her at night and hold her after sex and talk to her and have these great literary debates and hang out with her friends and stuff like that. I don’t know why, but it triggered me to think about how she lied or how she lied to her husband and five years in, she staging her death or–

Frank: Because–what’s she trying to accomplish?

Dr. Gayl: Well–

Dr. Rawlings: Yeah, seems sort of radical to me.

Frank: Yeah.

Dr. Gayl: Well, he also fronted and lied too of who he really was. So, they both lied. They both presented these false senses of themselves and these false perceptions of themselves and five years in, they hated each other.

Frank: So, she figures if she stages her death and makes it seem like he did it, he’ll go to jail and she’ll–

Dr. Gayl: Well, she’s thinking that if she staged it, he’ll somehow accept and love who she really is.

Frank: Whoa, alright.

Dr. Rawlings: Why didn’t she just get a divorce?

Dr. Gayl: Would that be fun?

Frank: Or put the book down. Stop reading the book.

Dr. Rawlings: *(inaudible) 1:00:26

Dr. Gayl: That wouldn’t be fun. It’s a psychological thriller. It’s really good.

Dr. Rawlings: It’s a psychodynamic horror.

Frank: Yeah.

Dr. Gayl: Exactly.

Frank: Yeah, you might want to put that one down, Dr. Gayl.

Dr. Gayl: Well, it’s for my book club, so.

Frank: You’re forced to read it, yeah. How’s the book club thing going?

Dr. Gayl: It’s great.

Frank: You enjoy that?

Dr. Gayl: Yeah.

Frank: It’s fun?

Dr. Gayl: Yes.

Frank: All women?

Dr. Gayl: Yes. I love to read. It’s all women and we talk about the book plus everything else.

Frank: I bet you do. How many women?

Dr. Gayl: Eight.

Frank: Alright.

Dr. Rawlings: You have no male influence at all?

Frank: None.

Dr. Gayl: None.

Dr. Rawlings: No male energy in there at all?

Frank: None. Eight women just going at it.

Dr. Gayl: Frank, would you read a psychological thriller about what I just described? No.

Frank: I would read it up until the point to what you just told me and I would put that down, because it does not sound like an interesting book. There was a movie, Double Jeopardy, I think it was called, years ago. Doc, just hang with us, because we’re certainly not on topic right now.

Dr. Rawlings: I’m listening.

Frank: There was a movie called Double Jeopardy. I think it was Ashley Judd was in it and she, her husband staged his death and she went to jail and she found out once she got out. He assumed another identity and continued his life. She found out he was still alive and she had already gone to jail, so if she killed him, she couldn’t go to jail.

Dr. Gayl: Yeah, she couldn’t be charged again. Yeah.

Frank: That sounded like it made more sense than the story you just mentioned, because I didn’t really get the point.

Dr. Gayl: Well, I’m not done, Frank.

Frank: Alright, alright how far are you in the book?

Dr. Gayl: I just got to part two. It’s a really big book.

Frank: Would that be halfway or–see we got.

Dr. Gayl: Its three parts.

Frank: Okay, we’ll call it a third.

You’re listening to Frank Relationships and we’ve been talking with Dr. Charles Rawlings, Neurosurgeon and Lawyer and author of, It Really is That Complicated, a book that it explores the complexities of men and women and offers a real take on what relationships have to offer us.

Along today’s journey, we’ve discussed somehow narcissism and somehow you guys tried to tie that to me.

Dr. Gayl: Somehow?

Frank: Yes. I was just telling you what the experience has been.

Dr. Gayl: That you never had a woman turn you down from sex?

Frank: That wasn’t what I said.

Dr. Gayl: Ever.

Frank: I said, withhold. There’s a difference between turn you down and withhold. Okay, good, now I like that answer. Good response.

We’ve discussed knowing yourself and we also discussed the famous power play between men and women, particularly between Dr. Gayl and men. I hope you’ve had as much fun as I’ve had discussing the relationship complications that Dr. Rawlings has written about.

As always, it’s my wish for you to walk away from this conversation with a heaping helping of useful information that’ll help you create a relationship that’s as loving and accepting as possible. Let us know what you thought of today’s show at:, on Twitter @mrfranklove or at

On behalf of my producer, Phileta Legette, my assistant producer, Anayza Stewart and the man on the boards, Jeff Newman, keep rising. This is Frank Love.


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