Reimagining Relationships with Melissa A. Fabello | #42

The Conjuring Up Courage logo, a photo of Melissa, and the words, "Reimagining Relationships with Melissa A. Fabello Episode #42"

Click here to access a written transcript of this episode.

An important (and often overlooked) aspect of health and well-being is social health, and relationships are at the core of social health. But so often we fall into the trap of believing that relationships of all kinds are supposed to look a specific way.

What if we could reevaluate and redefine our relationships so that they fit our lives instead of trying to fit our lives into the narrow relationship molds that already exist? Melissa A. Fabello explores that question with me in this episode.

As a writer and educator whose work explores the politics of bodies, beauty, and wellness, Melissa does a lot of writing about dating and relationships. From family to friends to romantic partners, we chatted about societal relationship norms and how we can bring more fluidity (and less hierarchy) into our relationship definitions.

We discussed:

  • Melissa's journey to become the writer and editor that she is today.
  • Some of the common relationship norms and scripts that are socialized into us from a young age.
  • The impossibility of one person meeting all of our needs even though that message is all around us.
  • How people often don't realize that monogamy is a choice they are making.
  • The concept of buckets from the larger ideology of relationship anarchy.
  • How we first learn communication from the people who raised us (and it's rarely healthy communication).
  • Why the idea that we should stick by family no matter what can be toxic.
  • How friendships can be romantic and intimate.
  • Different ways you can value and prioritize your friendships.
  • A Twitter thread Melissa wrote about boundaries between friends that got torn apart on the internet.
  • How it's natural for relationships to shift because it's natural for people to grow and change.
  • The lessons that even monogamous people can take away from non-monogamy.
  • The fear of jealousy that people have when they're considering non-monogamy.
  • How we don't “own” our romantic partners and possessiveness is not okay.
  • The importance of realizing that attraction is not fixed and that what we're attracted to has been influenced by oppression in the world around us.
  • How Melissa defines health and wellness for herself at this moment in her life.

Mentioned in This Episode

This Episode is Part of the Health and Wellness Changemakers Series Sponsored by Superfit Hero

I am so grateful to be collaborating with the body-positive brand Superfit Hero to introduce you to these changemakers who are taking the health and wellness industry in a new direction. The series runs from episode #37 to episode #48, so be sure to catch them all. Superfit Hero is an inclusive activewear brand that aims to provide clothing for ultimate confidence, no matter your size or sport. And if you enjoyed the Superfit Hero Wellness Tip of the Week, be sure to check out the dozens of amazing coaches and trainers in Superfit Hero’s Body Positive Fitness Finder.

Featured in This Episode

Melissa looks away from the camera to her right, wearing square glasses and a chambray shirt, standing in front of some flowers and foliage outside

Melissa A. Fabello (she/her) is a writer and educator whose work explores the politics of bodies, beauty, and wellness. She holds a PhD in Human Sexuality Studies. You can find Melissa on her website, Twitter, and Instagram.

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I’M SHOHREH.

I’m a self-trust coach, writer, and podcast host with a mission to help people figure out who they are and what they value so they can come home to themselves.

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