When we think about our legacies in the black community and the act of passing down things to the next generation, we, of course, hope those things are fruitful. Unfortunately, there are some toxic behaviors that are passed around in a harmful cycle that needs to be broken. OWN’s new show, Love Goals, is attempting to break that cycle.
The official synopsis, provided to The Root via press release:
Five celebrity couples in various stages of conflict participate in a two-week intensive therapy retreat led by relationship expert and licensed therapist Spirit with the goal of healing their broken relationships. DJ Spinderella and Quenton “Q” Coleman are engaged, but Spin’s reluctance to open up emotionally may cause a rift in their future marriage. Sundy Carter and Breyon Williams want to take their casual relationship to the next level, but Breyon may not be ready to turn in his player card. Dwayne and Theresa Bowe thought life would slow down when he retired from pro football, but his new career as a rapper has their home filled with Dwayne’s boys, and Theresa is fed up. Coolio and Mimi have been on and off for many years, and Coolio isn’t sure if he’s ever been cut out for a relationship. Benzino and Althea Heart have a turbulent, toxic relationship, but they’ve got to figure out a way to get along and co-parent their 4-year-old son. Spirit’s clients may be famous, but at their core, they’re just people with the same types of problems as the rest of us. She believes that it’s impossible to be in a healthy relationship if you are not healthy yourself, because half of that relationship is you. Through deep, emotional group therapy sessions, as well as intimate one-on-ones, Spirit cuts to the core of her clients’ fears, trauma and pain. Her goal is to heal each individual client so they can show up as one half of a whole, healthy, loving relationship.
In the upcoming episode titled, “It Runs in the Family,” “the group centers on generational trauma and how they can break the cycle for their children. Later, the couples take a DNA compatibility test with surprising results. Meanwhile, Spirit locates the father Breyon has never met and reveals three new siblings to him.”
In regard to generational trauma, there’s the concept of corporal punishment within the black community. Often considered to be an accepted practice of discipline back in the day, some black people are opening up to admit that the spankings and “whuppings” they experienced as a child may, in hindsight, have been a form of trauma for them. We all have heard the phrase, “My parents whupped me when I was a child, and I turned out okay?” But, did you, really?
In an exclusive clip obtained by The Root, Spirit and the couples unpack just that. The couples discussed phrases that are usually passed down through generations such as, “Stop cryin’ or I’ll give you somethin’ to cry about!”
“I can tell you pretty much every whuppin’ I got, I deserved, because I wasn’t listening,” rapper Coolio recalled in the clip.
“That is an excellent messaging of the example I’m talking about—‘every beating that I got, I deserved it’,” Spirit pointed out.
“When you do something wrong, there’s got to be a punishment,” Coolio continued. “It’s obviously not working because look at our children—they’re out of control.”
The “It Runs in the Family” episode of Love Goals airs Saturday, May 2 at 9 p.m. ET on OWN.