BJ Shea

 BJ Shea

BJ'S BLOG 10/09/15 "Taking Off The Ring"

We appreciate your commitment to Group Therapy, but we totally understand if you don't want your friends to find out! Sometimes, I wish I could hide the fact that I'm associated with Steve…

Today's patient-in-need is Katie, who admits that she's reluctant to share…because she's afraid of my reaction. I'll do my best to be fair and balanced, as they say on the TV.

Katie has been married for three years, and she goes out with her single girlfriends every so often. When she hits the town with her girls, she has started taking off her wedding ring. She says she's certain she won't cheat, but she does like having the freedom to flirt. You see, she was finding that men would gravitate to her friends, leaving her alone…you know, as if she's MARRIED or something.

But wait…Katie says she knows where to draw the line with these flirtatious guys! She thinks it's healthy to go out and have fun once in a while, and she's definitely not cheating! Of course, if you listen to this obscure television personality named "Oprah", then Katie has already cheated on an emotional level.

I'm going to take a short walk right now, folks. I need to blow off some steam – totally unrelated to this, of course – and I'm leaving this in your capable hands. What do you think about this ring-a-ding-ding situation?
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BJ'S BLOG 10/08/15 "Regretful Pictures"

Is it time for Group Therapy AGAIN? You know it is, Rock-A-Holics!

Five years ago – in college – Marcia did something that seemed like no big deal at the time, but now she's afraid it might come back to haunt her: she sold some naked photos of herself to a guy who was building his own private collection. Marcia wasn't the only college student who bared herself on camera for this buyer, and doing it didn't really bother her at all; it was easy money at a time when she needed the extra income.

Here's the catch: Marcia's old photo collector associate is around again…as a co-worker at her new job! She spotted him during her first workplace walkthrough, and now she's a little worried about gaining a bad reputation if he spills the beans. He isn't aware of her presence yet, but it's a small office; their paths will cross eventually.

What advice do you have for Marcia, folks? If you were in this situation, how would you handle it?
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BJ'S BLOG 10/07/15 "Your New Girlfriend Is A..."

Welcome back to Group Therapy, where there's never a cover charge! We do, however, recommend a two-drink minimum. As always, we would like to remind you to keep your hands off the talent at all times, and don't forget to tip generously.

Today's Rock-A-Holic in need is Aaron, and he's worried about his buddy's new relationship. His friend has been seeing this girl for a while now, and he told Aaron that he thinks she might be "the one". The problem is this: Aaron's friend thinks his girlfriend is a waitress on the south end, but Aaron met her recently, and couldn't shake the feeling that he knows her from somewhere. After some reflection, Aaron remembers their previous meeting…two weeks ago, when she gave him a lap dance!

That's right: his friend's new girlfriend is a stripper. Aaron is feeling pretty awkward about it, and he's just not sure how to approach the subject, if at all.

We live in an interesting time, don't we? Even just ten years ago, a guy might try to conceal that he's dating a stripper, but we've knocked down a lot of social barriers since then. What if Aaron's friend knows, but he doesn't want to tell all of his friends that they can see his girlfriend naked on a regular basis? Alternately, what if he DOESN'T know? How would he react to that news?

This is a tough one. Have any of you been in this situation? If so, we'd like to hear your thoughts. We'd especially LOVE to hear from some strippers, and maybe hear about that relationship-work balance that they're dealing with! Bring it on, folks!

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BJ'S BLOG 10/06/15 "Meeting Her Kid"

Hello again, Rock-A-Holics! I'd like to start by saying that we love your contributions to Group Therapy, you can always email us at

Nelson emailed us… he has been dating a girl for the last three months, and he loves everything about the relationship so far. Things are pretty serious (they've said "I love you") but there's one nagging thing: the girlfriend shares custody of her six-year-old daughter, but she hasn't introduced the kid to Nelson yet. He's totally prepared for that to happen, but it's not happening as quickly as he would prefer.

Recently, Nelson said that he wanted to spend more time with his girlfriend AND her daughter, but she says she's not quite ready yet. Nelson can understand her protective nature, but he's starting to wonder if she feels as strongly about the relationship as he does.

Nelson…man, I guess I'm a little bit surprised by how quickly you're moving. Three months in, and you've already dropped the L-bomb? How can you be sure this soon? Maybe I'm just not the romantic type, but this seems a little quick for a grownup relationship.

Let's see if your fellow Rock-A-Holics feel differently. Give this man some advice about his "daughter dilemma", won't you?
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BJ'S BLOG 10/05/15 "New England, the Crow, the Cracker, and Me"

Today's blog comes from one of my mentors, Dan Sanders:

There is an angry beauty about New England in the fall. Rolling thunder bounces from dark cloud to darker cloud, and the Atlantic Ocean turns colder and more unsympathetic, whipped into frenzy with wind gusts that can make small people suddenly do their best Mary Poppins impression. The humpbacks begin their journey to the Caribbean, as the little town of Rambling Harbor becomes clogged with boats on trailers straining to make their way around roads barely wide enough for two cars to pass. It's Rambling Harbor getting ready for fall, the season of mysteries that always enshrouds old New England towns, especially villages on harbors and oceans.

There is folklore that crows are attracted to shiny objects. I say folklore because apparently crows are just plain attracted to things, and any thing that might glitter would catch their eye. Based on that legend, I lovingly called my wife Crow Woman, one of many nicknames, and this one loosely based on some Native American idea. If she were walking down the street, a $500 bill on the pavement would not catch her eye as quickly as a shiny bobble in a window. Price was never the point, shiny was.

I love Ritz Crackers. During the first spring after my wife died, I found myself standing in the backyard, very early one quiet, beautiful morning. This was not a place I usually went. I was taking care of my landlady's plants while she was away. Suddenly a crow landed on a nearby lawn chair, left an almost complete Ritz cracker on the arm, and flew away. I was stunned and when I regained some of my senses, I went inside to get my camera. It took me a couple of minutes, and I figured this thing-loving crow would have returned for his Ritz. It's that Ritz in the picture. The crow never returned.

Maybe it's the early darkness, the angry sky, and the raging ocean, or maybe it's just being in old New England that makes us so aware of the possibilities. What could be more perfect than a New England fall, bursting with color, spirits, and mystery?

There will be more stories of hauntings and mysteries and of course a rock-and-roll timeline on the shores of Rambling Harbor. Join me there.
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BJ'S BLOG 10/02/15 "Is It Cheating?”"

Hey there, Rock-A-Holics! Let's get into some Group Therapy before the weekend starts, shall we?

Mark plays on a coed soccer team, and he ended up having dinner with a female teammate after their game was canceled. He has a girlfriend, but she was out with her friends that night, so Mark decided to carry through with the dinner plan; after all, he is NOT attracted to this teammate, so he didn't see the harm in it.

Unfortunately, a friend of Mark's girlfriend secretly spotted the two soccer chums at dinner, and sent a picture of them eating to Mark's girlfriend. Naturally, the girlfriend was furious, and has now accused Mark of "emotional cheating" with this other woman.

Wow, this is some serious drama…and strangely enough, the females in this situation have generated it all. Hell, the chief architect of this nonsense isn't even "in this situation" – she's just a nosy friend who wanted to get in on some trouble. Just a reminder, folks: people are stupid. Give 'em a chance, they'll prove it every time.

Mark says he's innocent, but the girlfriend says that dinner with someone of the opposite sex is cheating, plain and simple. Do you subscribe to that notion, or do you side with Mark? Your opinions are welcome, so fire away…
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BJ'S BLOG 10/01/15 "Best Friends with the Ex"

It's time for Group Therapy, folks!

Alexis needs some help with her ex-boyfriend…because he is now her best friend. They have no interest in getting back together; in fact, the ex-boyfriend is now dating someone new.

Alexis wishes him well in his new relationship, but she's not too happy with his request that his relationship with Alexis remains a secret when she meets the new girl next week. He begged her to carry through with this deception, and even went so far as to ask her to rope their mutual friends in on the deal!

I realize I'm famous for my stance on women and men having post-relationship friendships (DON'T DO IT), so nothing I have to say about this will come as a surprise. That's why I'm turning it over to you, the Rock-A-Holics who offer up advice to their own. Should Alexis let her ex-boyfriend (and current best friend) drag her into a lie for the sake of his new relationship?
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BJ'S BLOG 09/30/15 "Wedding Money"

Do you hear wedding bells, gang? Maybe that’s the sound of a cash register. It’s so hard to tell sometimes…
A Rock-A-Holic named Will is trying to tell the difference between “bing-bong” and “ka-ching” at the moment, because he gave his daughter some money for her wedding, and she spent it…on something else. Did we mention that the amount he gave her was FIFTEEN THOUSAND DOLLARS? No? Well, now you know.
Will’s daughter was supposed to spend the money on a lavish wedding, but the happy couple has decided to elope. Now, the dough is financing a trip to Australia that was never part of the plan. Will and his wife disagree about the situation, with the wife defending the daughter and her husband-to-be; Will feels like he’s been the victim of a swerve, and he wants his money back!
This is a tough one, folks. I can really see both sides of the coin here, so let’s hear what you have to say! What would you do if this was YOUR hard-earned money?
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BJ'S BLOG 09/29/15 "Babysitter"

Hey-ho, Rock-A-Holics! Today’s session of Group Therapy almost feels like it should start with the classic line: “I can’t believe this happened to me…”
Needless to say: this one’s for the grownups…ironically.
We heard from Candace, a 19-year-old babysitter who recently had a concerning encounter with her customer. The couple she was sitting for came home from a wedding, exhausted and partied out. The wife passed out in bed immediately, leaving Candace to wrap up the transaction with the husband. Just as the man was about to pay her, he suddenly kissed her on the lips. Candace doesn’t deny that she kissed him back. He seemed to suddenly snap out of it, and then said “we’ll call you if we need you.”
Now, Candace feels bad about the whole thing. She usually deals with the wife in this couple, and now she feels like she can’t work for them again. The problem is having to explain exactly why she feels compelled to stay away, and she’s not sure how to handle that,
Candace, I suppose you’re okay in my book, especially because you admitted to kissing him back. There was alcohol involved on the man’s part, and this was certainly an uncomfortable event. You were sober, and you liked it, so there IS that aspect. Maybe staying away from that situation is the best idea. Personally, I don’t think it’s worth ruining the guy’s life over a stupid little kiss, but that’s just me.
Who has advice for this kissy-face babysitter?
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BJ'S BLOG 08/28/15 "Spooky October"

Today's blog comes from one of my mentors, Dan Sanders:

With the beginning of the so-called season of the witch, I thought I would recount an old and true tail of spirits. I like the term spirits instead of ghosts.
The old one stands proud and beautiful in the moonlight. Such great beauty often hides deep secrets. Softly she rocks on the water, her bones groaning but still strong. The very bones are the timbers that rejected the British cannonballs in the war of 1812, defeating four of their best warships, the timbers on which 308 sailors lost their lives and gave their bones to mingle in Old Ironsides forever. The voices of those long gone have been heard to speak in whispers, and visions of a young cabin boy have been seen. Do souls still linger on the ship they loved and died for? Many say they still walk the planks of Old Ironsides, the USS Constitution. It is reported that some sailors refuse to descend into the lower decks at night, fearing that would send them hurling through time and space into her resting past—or is it resting?
While sailors may be reluctant, I have a group of friends who went running hell bent (pardon the expression) to investigate these bumps in the night and disembodied voices, the vision of the boy and the eerie knowledge that these souls were indeed still protecting their beloved ship. My friends are well known as S.P.I.R.I.T.S. of New England and are the only crew who has been allowed to spend the night on Old Ironsides.  While investigations of this type never contain absolute proof, I know this group well enough to believe they have probably experienced what the sailors who would rather stay above deck fear. You can check them out here:
My friends believe that the souls they encountered were as curious about them as they were about the spirits. Curious about them, hmm, curious about them—it makes me wonder if there is truly overlapping time. Are these souls people just living in their own space and place in whatever grand design there is? Could it be we are the spirits and don’t know it? Is our time being visited by those from some distant future or past world? Are they paranormal investigators, hundreds of years into tomorrow, trying to understand why there are voices from the 21st century? Are we the present, the past, the future, or all of these at once?
The Time Machine by H. G. Wells was instrumental in moving the concept of time travel to the forefront of the public imagination, but it is well known that Einstein, in his theory of relativity, cited that time travel was possible. Einstein said he wished he could ride a lightning bolt, and then he would move fast enough to travel through time.
Perhaps there are no so-called spirits, just different people living in different periods in the illusion of a man-made system of counting minutes, hours, and days called time.
I hope you will spend a little time on the shores of Rambling Harbor with me as we continue to explore spooky October and other scary stuff like life.
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Locations : New England
People : Dan Sanders


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