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My Apologies to Dr. Phil

Dear Dr. Phil,

Last night I spoke to my mother about my appearance on the Dr. Phil Show.  She said what she’s told me since I was very young, “you are aggressive instead of assertive.  You have to find a way to present your stances, which have always been unique, without the aggression so that people will find an ear to hear you.”

I agreed with her.  I also agreed with friends and family who thought I was defensive and overly assertive during the appearance.

I’d like to extend my deepest heartfelt apology to Dr. Phil and to everyone for my overly dominant conversation style.  I’d also like the opportunity to explain what was going through my mind, if you’d care to hear my truth.

As soon as we were asked to appear on the show, I began watching Dr. Phil clips on YouTube.  What I saw were people coming on the show with major issues and Dr. Phil boldly setting them straight.  I asked myself, why should I appear on this show?  I do not desire Dr. Phil’s advise on my love style.  I honestly adore this consciously chosen open love and would not change it, even if Dr. Phil said it was inappropriate.  However, spirit in me said “do it – It’s time for more people to hear about Progressive Love”.

Nervously, I posted our coming appearance on my facebook page.  Everyone said “Dr. Phil is a steam roller”, and I should be prepared to fight back.  This frightened me.  I have been on many talk shows including ABC News, FOX News, Monique Show, Bill Cunningham Show and Michael Baisden Live.  I’ve never felt the need to defend the lifestyle.  These interviewers were asking honest questions about my life, there was no hostility, even if the interviewer did not agree, and I simply answered:

Such as here on Fox News:

Or Here on Monique Show:

So I feel confident enough to say that I do know how to relax into an interview, even as my personality is big and boisterous.  [To see more of my videos just go to my youtube site http://youtube.com/user/hakashamut]  I’ve never been confronted or expected to be confronted on any live appearance, so this was something new…

On the Dr. Phil Show, I came ready for a battle.  My thought about the impending battle were confirmed when in the pre-interviews they asked us questions like “do we have threesomes, how many men have I slept with, and do we have sex in our marital bed with other partners”.

I was surprised by these questions as my husband and I are actually quite sexually conservative.  I tried to explain the purpose of our open relationship is not sex, we simply believe we do not need to own one another, hold one another as possessions, in order to deeply love one another, forever.  In the interviews, I explained Progressive Love.

Progressive Love is four principles that guide our marriage.  They are simple:

  1. No Shame No Blame | We don’t make the other feel bad for being a real person.
  2. No Victims No Villains | We don’t believe the other has negative intentions.
  3. No Cop Outs No Drop Outs | We won’t leave the relationship when riddled with challenges, we also won’t stay for the sake of staying, or ‘numb out’.
  4. The purpose is Growth the Benefit is Love | We believe relationships eventually push us out of comfort zones and thus lead to beautiful character development.

These principles are the basis of our open concept, but also apply in monogamy.  I thought this would be the crux of the show; The idea that modern relationships need solutions.  My husband and I provide solutions.  We provide a new framework.  I’d hoped the show could be a focused discussion around Progressive Love as well as specifics of our open marriage.

Instead I created an atmosphere of hostility.  I created it with my fear of and preparation for impending battle, with my thought that Dr. Phil would try to sensationalize us, and with my thought that whatever happens, Dr. Phil is NOT going to bulldoze me.

This is how we create reality.  We create with our expectations.  If we expect a fight, we get one… I have learned that I will never expect a battle again, even when going to meet with a warrior.  I expect that even if I go see Rush Limbaugh, I will be met with a fair discussion.

I don’t look back and regret what occurred as I know all things are working for our greatest good.  I don’t believe in regrets.  But I do believe in living for the learning…

When we expect the best, we get the best.  It is when fear guides our expectations we walk into our own traps and live the very lives we feared we would.  This is important learning for me.

I do hope my apology is embraced.  I enjoyed the show.  I felt happy to share and always will stand to share what we do with others for the sake of humans everywhere.

With love and solidarity,

Kenya K Stevens

By the way here is the whole video of my daughter about her feelings on open relationships. Enjoy!

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26 thoughts on “My Apologies to Dr. Phil

  1. Thanks, Kenya, for this very honest blog. We can all learn from this experience. We really do create our experiences based upon our preconceived conceptions. But I know for you Kenya, it’s only gonna get better and better from here on in. Your next tv appearances are going to be even more compelling and convincing. I think Dr. Phil helped you a lot by showing show where you still need to grow! Love you, Kenya!

  2. KENYA,
    Again, you make us all proud of you. You are honest. You were brave to walk into the storm with your vulnerability and trepidation about the whole situations, yet you looked it squarely in the eye, and did your best. YOU are human. You are a powerful woman. NO one can take that way from you. It takes a more courageous woman to reflect and look at her shortcomings and admit her truth. IT is for this that you portray the progressiveness movement even more, because its not an easy road….its not a perfect road…but its a road less traveled, and a road that comes with many questions…and answers. I would pray that Dr. Phil would accept, if he is a good man, and that he could also admit to his own prejudices in this situation. With all that you said, his show is geared to get HIS point across…that is his church. So, again, so much to learn. Like you said, no regrets, we learn, we grow, we do better…I’m so proud of you sis!!!! Thank you Warrior Woman!!!

  3. Kenya…I applaud you…I have been working on not judging and thought I had made strides but I found myself judging you yesterday. I didn’t judge your choices as much as I found myself judging your delivery which made me then relook at your choices as “wrong”. This morning I woke up with compassion and letting go of my thoughts of what and how others should be doing things and owning my thoughts and actions…and I sent you a BIG ball of love and light and then someone sent me this. While your path is not my path I applaud you for your courage to recognize your “learnings” because yes – in our experiences come learnings that propel us and grow us in the most marvelous ways.

    Many Blessings, Love & Light to YOU, your husband and your children.


  4. Goddess, you are such a bright light. I see you… I thought to say this, but you already saw it. You heard my thoughts. Thank you for always being an example of the importance of internal reflection of how we manifest. The message is out, which was also one of your intentions, and you will see the growth from this.

  5. Kenya,

    This heartfelt apology brought tears to my eyes and though I have shared my aggravation with the way the Dr. Phil’s show sought to portray you (and everyone else, but especially you), that is not the reason why I am feeling emotional about your apology.

    The reason I feel emotional is because the fears and expectations you described in this eloquently written post are the exact match of the fears and expectations I had as I anticipated the show. I am not a big fan of Dr. Phil as a member of the helping profession anyway, but I did want the treatment of your message to be something way better than what I saw. I was worried the whole time–feeling protective of you and of your message–and very, very fearful. As you say in your post, so much energy was given to that fear that, of course, those fears came to pass. I feel like I should apologize to you for helping to energetically feed the fear you already had. I felt like you came out guns blazing because you had to–kill or be killed–that’s what I was thinking. So NOT Progressive! Your thoughtful words here are like a cool mist that calm my spirits and make me remember
    that it’s all love and to expect the best (or something better) and that each of us truly creates his/her own life.

    Thank you, Kenya, for being a most consummate teacher–that is one who recognizes her own lessons and truly embraces them for all to see and thereby teaching by one of the strongest teaching methods possible: being the change you want to see in the world.

    Keep doing you and changing lives in the process…

  6. I agree Khayr, nothing to apologize for. She did an excellent job on the show. I was afraid to watch it at first because I didn’t want to hear anyone to say anything hurtful to them but after my honey watched it and said it was OK then I watched it and was surprised that it went very well.

    There was only one thing I didn’t understand, no disrespect to Rakhem’s mom. But she said “Oh you all are excellent parents” but then she said she was concerned for the children. That I didn’t understand.

    Overall, great show. I loved it. It wasn’t heavy it was light and fun (except for when the mother-in-law was speaking lol im sorry but she kind of turned the tables a little). Great job KK and if Dr. Phil ever reads this I think he’d agree there is nothing to apologize for as well.


  7. I agree with what everybody is saying and you all did us proud. I too am sorry to you because in the blogs I sent energy out to you like a trainer wanting his fighter to go and destroy the opponent. I’m taking my lesson and growing also. Much love to you all

  8. Shame on you for using Dr. Phil’s show as a platform to spotlight your immoral behavior. You have absolutely no respect or regard for marriage or your childrten. Love is NOT sex and sex is NOT love. My only wish is that Dr. Phil would have put a sock in your mouth to shut you up. Your ranting & raving was over the top annoying and painted a true picture of who you are.

  9. Did you know that your little girl was defending you on Dr. Phil’s Facebook page? This child shouldn’t even have to be reading about this controversy and wouldn’t be if you had kept your children out of it. Why expose them to what you do in your bedroom? It is sad that she has to read all of the critics of her mother’s and father’s lifestyle. I heard that the Wake Forest child protective services is investigating your fitness to be parents. Is that true? I can see why they would what with you saying you exposed your daughter to porn and that you give them condoms and tell her that sex is luscious (like a candy bar???).

  10. Um I just have to say that i gasped a bit at how bold you and carl are about this issue. But then you have to take into account the shame based training most of us have about issues that plauge us everyday such as having multiple partners or discussing sex openly and honestly with our children. Both You Kenya and carl are so very inteligent and advanced…it is going to take some time for others to catch on. As far as Dr Phil is concerned him and the audience both tried to prevert and make a joke out of what you guys are doing. I appreciated every second of Kenya’s bold interjections and explanations of everything because without it. Dr Phill would have tried to make it seem different than it was. So thank you for dominating the interview and making sure your viewpoints are clear.

    to anna: education starts at home kenya and carl are educating their children on matters they face and will face have several seats

  11. Hi Kenya, it’s unfortunate that 90% of the above comments are just saying what will please u instead of what will help u. You did d right thing by apologizing coz u were really out of control during that show; pls next time, give others an opportunity to express themselves too.

    As for ur opinions about open marriage, I have a lot coming ur way. My greatest sympathy goes to your children esp ur 11yr old daughter. Hearing her say that she doesn’t consider practicing this life style, and then “i don’t just know”, “it’s complicated” – tore my heart. Why do u just hv to confuse these children this way. You’ve told her that there’s nothing wrong with it but deep inside her, something stronger tells her that it’s very wrong – the girl is confused.

    I have some hidden truths for you, esp concerning ur husband and ur marriage. I will be unveiling them soon…

    • I feel Kenya did not have to apologize, we don’t say things to appease Kenya, we dont kiss ass here. Do you think you could sit up on national TV, hands folded on your lap and tight lipped, and let someone take your words and twist them and say you’re a bad parent? I’ll answer for you, the answer is no, its not going to happen its just not realistic. I think she handled herself quite well.

      Why are you providing these truths Belle? Hmmmm, it can’t be to help, since your comment above is far from helpful. So whats the purpose of it?

      The one thing I would do differently if I were Kenya? Delete your comment lol.

    • I’m just thinking about what you wrote. It’s quite interesting. You say, and I’m paraphrasing, “You can ignore the majority of those positive comments, they don’t mean anything. You should listen to what I have to say, I’m here to help. Let me attempt to take any joy you may have received from those comments away. Listen to me”

      lol And then you follow it up with anything but help with your “opinions” and then you promise to provide more of your “help” in the future lol

      With friends like you, who needs enemies? Goodness gracious!!

  12. You say that the purpose of this “movement” is not based on sex and yet your blog is full of sex. If this is not sensationalized I do not know what is… :/

    • What is wrong with sex? The movement is about love. I do not seperate sex from love… do you? I don’t have sex with people I do not love. I love to have sex with the people I love. What is odd about this? Do you have sex with people you love? Do you feel it’s wrong?

      • hmmm… where have I been all this while? Interesting conversation! @jujumama (Kenya, I believe…) – please can we start from here? What do you call love? Coz the last time i checked, the definition of love was completely different from sex and there are several records of people who have had sex with people they don’t love. So, what do you really call love? Please explain…


  13. Dear Lovely lady, I truly appreciate your response and I wish you will continue to follow me up. I will not argue with u as to whether Kenya comported herself during the show or not, or if she needed to apologize or not. I’m glad u finally summoned courage to watch the show. Did u observe that during the show, it came to a point when people in audience refused to allow Kenya to continue talking? they plainly yelled out “Noooooo” for her to keep her mouth shot. Dr. Phil was not so pleased either, u saw his reaction when she crossed him while he spoke just to oil some ashy legs who no one cared about (except her lovers, maybe). So, my dear, I’m glad that Kenya has common sense and it’s her common sense that nudged her to write an apology. ..and please don’t forget that there was another lady on the show (I really anticipated to her what she had to say, but…)

    As for your 2nd response, I don’t really understand what exactly you are trying to say. I’ve promised to dish out some goodies regarding this open marriage issue and I will when the time is right.

    To you it might not be helpful coz it seems like you’ve completely bought into the idea and may be practicing it already – it’s your life and none of my business. I’m glad that Kenya is a smart open-hearted young lady with common sense and that’s why she has not deleted my comment. I’m pretty sure that she and her husband will benefit richly from these truths; as well as others who may be confused and seeking to make the right choices in their lives.

    I wish u well!

    • *sigh* So you are able to determine who has common sense or not? How? Those who agree with you do? Lady you really need to check yourself. As for your assumption, I am not in an open relationship but a monogamous one.

      You are missing the message completely. The message is one of unconditional Love. No judgement. Just Love. One day you people will get it.

      I wish you well as well

      • Dear lovely lady, I don’t mean to upset you (can see you are sighing already). Before I proceed, I just want to let u know that I don’t have anything personal against u or jujumama or anyone on this forum; I see this blog as a platform where people can frankly share their opinions. So, please I hope u don’t misunderstand my frankness as rudeness; just want to share my thoughts clearly as they are. ***I’m enjoying this conversation, by the way***

        Ok, so back to the issue at hand… I believe that anyone who has common sense should be able to determine who has common sense or not. I do have common sense so I can tell if someone has it or not based on their actions.

        I do not agree with Kenya in a lot of ways but of course she does have common sense and that’s why she wrote Dr. Phil an apology, and for the fact that she didn’t delete my comment (as u desired) shows that the lady has common sense.

        Good to hear that you are in a monogamous relationship altho it’s hard for me to believe (I believe u anyway).

        My question is: since u already got the message completely and you think this unconditional love movement is great, why haven’t you joined?

        Secondly, what is your own definition of unconditional love? Coz my own definition totally abhors the idea of open relationship…

        I bet you, we can never get this message except you people get the facts straight…

        yours sincerely!

  14. I happened upon this show today and found the judgemental positions of the host, crowd, and mother-in-law was disturbing. While everyone saw Kenya and a conversation hog, I saw a woman defending their lifestyle against a hostile crowed; all with a postive attitude and a smile. Like it or not this decision works for them and we don’t have a right judge them or vilify them because we don’t like the decision. We don’t have the right to label them as bad people or parents! We don’t have right to impose our belief system or values onto them.

    Kenya … Carl… and the rest of the panel … if you’re seeing this Please know that I think you were all brave, beautiful, and courageous for being willing to put yourselves out there and show the rest of the world a different take on marriage and commitment. And no, your lifestyle will not appeal to everyone, but there are some out there that will see what you two share a be able to choose it as a viable relationship path for them.

    I personally know 3 couples with open and semi-open marriages. This doesn’t work for someone like me, I’m just too jealous, possessive, and selfish to share the woman I love with another. I’d rather be alone or leave her rather than share her. But that’s my view… One of the men in the before mentioned couples is someone I grew up with… he’s like a brother to me. He and his spouse chose a swing lifestyle.. They are both very intelligent, educated, and beautiful people. I’ve even asked him if is self esteem suffers from such a lifestyle.. he’s assured me that because of the rules they’ve arranged going in.. it’s not a problem for them. And there is a kid involved.. now unlike you and Carl.. they keep there adult activities outside the home and away from their kid. If anything I would suggest to you all distancing the kids from your decisions.

    ONE:::: you didn’t invent a new marriage pardigm.. this open marriage thing has been going on a long time.. some people have unspoken arrangements.. , others choose to turn a blind eye as long as discretion is maintained.. then there are other like you and your husband that are all out with it..

    True story my brother, a trucker, and was approached about by a woman’s husband asking if he’d fulfill her fantasy of having sex with a big black man.. He fit the bill because he’s 6ft7in 380lbs.
    She was a 50+ white woman; he obliged.

    I have others…

  15. Woman you are amazing and so beautiful from the inside out. I look forwarded to sharing a glass of wine with you one day soon. Your mind and the way it works excites me. You are comforting. Keep up the magic.


  16. This lifestyle isn’t for everyone. You take what you will from it. If you don’t agree at all, then why are you here?? :-)

    I stumbled across Jujumama on twitter a few months ago, and although I don’t participate in open relating with my boyfriend, if it works for you then great! I absolutely love to see Kenya talk about her lifestyle and as I said, I take from it what I can use in my monogamous relationship.

    I’ve learned how to be completely open with my man (still learning and making progress) and love him without limits and expectations! Why shouldn’t we love each other this way in any relationship be it with family, friends, or a significant other??

    I think there’s something here for everyone if you open your mind and heart and try not to be judgmental.

  17. I agree with Kenya’s apology. It was heartfelt and a great explanation of how she presented herself. People, who don’t believe apologies are EVER necessary, can’t see themselves through the perspective of others. We have to learn to step outside ourselves. . .which is challenging. Kenya, as great as I think you are, I applaud how you were able to receive outsidghtful feedback and be insightful with yourself. We all need to learn more about ourselves. . .and not be afraid of revealing such.

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