Back in 2016, the Universal Bullshit Translator parsed some RIC nonsense from Dr. Keith Ablow — a popular therapist commentator on Fox News. I’m rerunning it today and at the end, you can read an update about what happened to ol’ Dr. Keith, sent in by an alert reader. Who doesn’t enjoy a shot of schadenfreude on a Tuesday?
Dr. Keith Ablow, Fox New psychiatrist, where have you been all my life? You’re Universal Bullshit Translator GOLD.
Today’s UBT fodder is this wacky defense of serial cheating, “Infidelity is a lousy reason to end a marriage.” But that’s not all his crazy! He called Michelle Obama fat! And then told the women newscasters who gave him the “don’t go there” stare that they could all stand to lose a few pounds too. (Ms. Obama could crush his misogynistic pudding-head with one of her chiseled biceps, but whatever…)
He also thought Newt Gingrich’s serial cheating and three marriages made him more qualified to run for president.
“When three women want to sign on for life with a man who is now running for president, I worry more about whether we’ll be clamoring for a third Gingrich term, not whether we’ll want to let him go after one.”
Yes, politics aside, what really matters with our candidates is their fuckability. (So why aren’t you after Newt’s body-fat ratio, huh?)
Has that whetted your whistle for more bullshit, chumps? Because Ablow really delivers. Without further ado, the UBT:
In Beyonce’s one-hour visual album, “Lemonade,” which aired on HBO over the weekend and then was released for streaming on Tidal, the singer explores the theme of infidelity – a topic many theorize is autobiographical, given rumors of infidelity on the part of her husband, Jay Z.
If autobiographical, Beyonce would be telegraphing that, while she has stayed with her husband to date, future infidelity might not be tolerated. “You know I give you life, if you try this s—t again you’re gonna lose your wife,” she sings.
Why she’s tolerating the current infidelity is a mystery to the UBT. But yeah, imagine the chutzpah of a beautiful, talented, financially independent woman threatening to leave a cheater. Who does she think she is? Beyonce?
Maybe. But here’s the truth, from more than 20 years of practicing psychiatry: Marriages are more resilient than the lyrics of Beyonce’s album would suggest. Not infrequently, they survive repeated episodes of infidelity.
To the left, to the left, everything you own in the box to the left… so we can stay together in seething misery.
Here’s why: Marriages are made of much more than sex. The ones that last any real length of time are, in fact, stories that include richly textured early chapters, the momentum of tens of thousands of shared, mundane, everyday experiences, triangulated interpersonal connections with dozens or hundreds of people and the hope for shared joy and transcendence in the future.
Marriages with cheaters are made of much more than sex. There’s the richly textured gaslighting, the shared, mundane sexually transmitted diseases, and the momentum of tens of thousands of lies.
Why leave when there are triangulated interpersonal connections with dozens or hundreds of people you meet on Craigslist, or rest stop glory holes, or Facebook? Wouldn’t you like to share the joy and hope of transcendence that is reconciling with a cheater?
Given those profound ingredients,
Did I mention the Back Page hookups?
I believe that a spouse having sex with another partner is always — in and of itself — an irrational reason to bust up a marriage.
Did you have to paternity test your children? That’s such an irrational reason to break up! Silly goose!
After all, over time, sexual energy generally becomes one of the least reliable measures of the strength of a couple’s union.
That’s why it’s so important to indulge your ever-diminishing sexual energy on meaningless fuckfests.
That energy dissipates in a tortured, yet treasured, haze of shared laundry baskets, watching one another floss in the morning, listening to one another being petty and seeing one another being frightened and self-indulgent.
Laundry and flossing, Keith. You make it sound so sexy.
Does it really make sense to rip up the evolving tapestry of such a relationship only because a spouse has had intercourse with someone else? I don’t think so — ever.
It was ONLY intercourse! Did I have to lie to you a thousand times or spend money or risk your health to fuck other people? NO! That never happens!
Would you really RIP the EVOLVING TAPESTRY over THAT?
I mean, really, people need to get their priorities in order.
I mean, really, we should roll Esther Perel, Keith Ablow and every other cheater apologist into a giant, evolving tapestry — think of it as Satan’s burrito — and drop them in the nearest harbor.
Oh no, hang on, that was the UBT indulging in a daydream there. You know the UBT’s abilities to indulge in gruesome revenge fantasies are dissipating. Please don’t hold tortured, yet treasured thoughts of Keith Ablow slowly suffocating to death in a tapestry burrito against the UBT. Get your priorities in order. It was just a death wish.
I’m not without an ego, but I can tell you that after more than 20 years of my own marriage, I fully expect my wife to find decent-looking waiters distracting. And if one of them were distracting to the extreme, to the point of her having a tryst, I would hope never to learn of it.
Until I noticed one day that my son looks an awful lot like a decent-looking waiter of my acquaintance.
(Really? You’d fuck a WAITER? When you have the awesomeness of my PhD-ed, bald, fat self here? REALLY?)
But I certainly wouldn’t abandon her if I did learn of it. She and I have far bigger things to worry about — like the fact that we cherish having our son and daughter in bedrooms down the hall from ours, and the fact that we need to keep track of our ailing beagle’s medicines,
I would never divorce my wife for cuckolding me. There’s a SICK BEAGLE to worry about! Seriously, do you know how much those medicated ear drops cost?
and the fact that we still remember dicey moments from a nearly catastrophic year we lived through together, and the fact that we remember one time when we were really young and didn’t have a ton of money, but we adopted this dying cat who collapsed on our doorstep and cost us plenty of dough to keep alive.
She can’t divorce me for fucking around — HOW COULD SHE DO THAT TO SNOWBALL?!!
That’s the stuff of attachment —
Casually fucking other people? That’s the stuff of attachment too.
not the certainty that each spouse’s sexual passion has forever and will forever reside only in their marital union.
Just because I promise that “certainty” in front of all my friends and family, made a legally binding union with my wife, doesn’t mean it’s forever, kids!
The secret therapeutic weapon I deploy to keep together couples
I’m not in the least bit disturbed that I’m using weapon imagery to discuss keeping marriages together.
No, tell us Keith, what is your secret therapeutic weapon?
A 12-gage shotgun? An Esther Perel TED talk? Napalm?
who swear that infidelity has caused an irreparable rift goes like this. I will ask an aggrieved husband (for the purposes of this example), “So, given that you have learned your wife has had a lover, you are leaving her, for sure?”
“For sure,” such a man will often tell me.
Poor, benighted man with the self-respect there. Get over yourself!
“And, so,” I go on, “should your wife be stricken with cancer, you are fully prepared to have her boyfriend — not you — take her to the hospital for chemotherapy. Is that right? Maybe she’ll give you a call when the fatigue and nausea and horror of it all subside. Maybe.”
If your cheating wife gets cancer, can you have that on YOUR conscience? It’s YOUR JOB to care for her! You promised! Hey, just because she promised not to fuck other people doesn’t make YOUR promises null and void.
You think some fancy-ass waiter knows how to dress bandages or drive to cancer centers? Yeah, I don’t think so.
Occasionally, such a man will answer in the affirmative. He’s perfectly OK with that scenario. But far more often, such a man’s shoulders will slump with the unpredictable weight of life’s twists and turns and tragedies, and he will say, haltingly, “Well … no … I would not feel comfortable with that. I would want … I would need to be the person taking her for her treatment.”
God, I love those conscience things you people have. I don’t have one, but it sure is useful to mindfuck you with yours.
“Well, then,” I will advise him, “you’re in a real jam. Because it seems that you love an imperfect person and that you really aren’t ready to leave her. Do you know what that makes you, and her, by the way?”
“Human,” I say. “Welcome to the club.”
Chumps are super loving, all forgiving, and must nurse cheaters through cancer. Cheaters are merely occasionally “imperfect.” But what with sick beagles and flossing and all, you’re together. In this Human Club.
Okay, only one of you is actually in the Human Club. The other one is rolled up in a tapestry of fuckwits. But hey, stay together. Because sick beagles. By the way, you’re fat.
And now…. a quack update!
On May 15, 2019, the Massachusetts Board of Registration in Medicine indefinitely suspended Ablow’s medical license, concluding he posed an “immediate and serious threat to the public health, safety and welfare.” New York state has also suspended Ablow’s medical license in that state.
On February 21, 2019, the Boston Globe reported that Ablow had been accused by multiple patients and employees of sexual assault and harassment; three malpractice lawsuits by former patients allege physical and verbal abuse, and three former employees filed affidavits claiming threatening and abusive behavior. The lawsuits were settled out-of-court in the summer of 2019.
The New York Times ran a story in December 2019, What It Took for a Fox News Psychiatrist to Lose His License. Excerpt:
Monique came to believe that Dr. Ablow had not only failed to help her; he left her more damaged than she already was. For his part, Dr. Ablow would maintain that whatever boundaries she thought he violated — the frequent texts and emails, the intimate revelations about his own life — were in the service of her treatment, well within the standard of sound psychiatric care.
As Monique would discover, it would take years — and several other patients coming forward with their own stories of manipulation — for Dr. Ablow’s transgressions to be taken seriously.
But I think my favorite defrocked Dr. Ablow update is from The Salem News in New Hampshire.
A New Hampshire woman who says she was treated by Dr. Keith Ablow for nearly a decade has now filed a malpractice lawsuit against the former Newburyport psychiatrist.
The Londonderry, New Hampshire, resident alleges that during the course of her treatment by Ablow, he engaged in numerous boundary violations, including those of a sexual nature.
She also alleges that after his medical license was suspended, Ablow asked her to become a pastor in a church he wanted to start.
Because we need more Jesus cheaters…. sweet Mother of God…
But don’t fret, CN. Just because Keith isn’t a doctor any longer, doesn’t mean he still can’t help you, or feel you up in the hallway, or whatever.
He’s now a life coach.
No one can remove your qualifications if you don’t have any!