Dear Fellow Single Woman,
Are you tired of explaining why you’re still single … or single again?
Are you sometimes sad about being single … even though most of the time you are content with your life?
Do you cringe when the women closest to you – like your mom, grown daughter, or best friend –
chide you with comments like “You’re too fussy” or “You’re not trying hard enough”?
Do you feel society’s pressure you should be married or partnered – and if you aren’t, that it must be your fault?
When you are with a man, do you feel like you lose part of yourself in the relationship?
Are you uncomfortable being single in a world geared towards couples?
Are you tired of hearing everyone’s unsolicited ideas about why you are single … and what you should do about it?
Isn’t it about time to get rid of their voices and find your OWN voice
about what it means to be single (or single again) – at this moment in your life?
If you answered YES to one or more of these questions, please clear your calendar for October 17-19, 2008, and plan to meet me in
Madison, Indiana, for this Unique Retreat for Single Women.
A SPECIAL EVENT JUST FOR SINGLE WOMEN
The Unique Retreat for Single Women is NOT about finding a man. You won’t learn where to meet eligible men … how to make yourself more attractive to a man … how to flirt … or any other idea that lays blame on you for being single.
Instead, the Unique Retreat for Single Women is about removing the blame you lay on yourself … as well as deflecting society’s prejudice about singles.
It’s about finding a balance between being independent and self-fulfilled as a single woman yet also wanting the intimacy and companionship of a man.
It’s about keeping your identity … even when you’re with a man.
It’s about understanding past decisions you’ve made about men … and moving on now to the future.
It’s about getting support from other women who understand how difficult it is to be single … and discovering how others handle
the struggles of contending with a prejudiced society.
It’s about finding your own voice of how you feel and who you are as a single woman.
It’s about creating ways to make being single easier and less stressful.
And, it’s also about FUN.
Hi, I’m Dr. Karen Gail Lewis. I’m a marriage and family therapist and an author of seven books, including With or Without A Man: Single Women Taking
Control of Their Lives, 11 Stories on the Reality of Being Single in a Married World.
I created the Unique Retreat for Single Women to right a major wrong…
Society Is Hugely Biased Against Single Women
(Even Single Women Are Prejudiced Against Single Women!)
As a heterosexual Always Single woman, I know the pressures and biases you face. For close to four decades, I’ve worked with:
- Always Single women who have never had a marriage certificate
- Single Again women who find themselves unattached after a divorce or a husband’s death
- Women suffering from a break-up of a committed relationship.
If you are not married, remarried … or at least “with a man,” society bombards you with the messages that “It’s your fault” and
“There’s something wrong with you.”
It’s bad enough dealing with blame and prejudice from society in general.
But what’s even worse is hearing it from those who love you … like your mother, children, even your best friend.
You also hear it from those who should know better – professionals who work with and write self-help books for singles. When their
advice starts with what you should do differently to meet or “catch” a man, they too are blaming you – it’s your fault you are single.
And worst of all is the blame you hear from your single friends, like questioning if you really gave that last man a chance.
(And then … horror of all horrors: Do you pass this subtle blame and judgment on to other single women?)
Who Should Attend
The Unique Retreat for Single Women is designed for heterosexual, Always Single and Single Again women who are over 34.
Some signs that you are ready for Unique Retreat for Single Women are:
- You are proud of having created a life and career that is comfortable yet … you are tired of feeling different
- You are angry that society is unkind and unfair to singles
- You want your life as a single woman to be less stressful
- You are indecisive about a current relationship … but you hate or fear the idea of starting over again
- You are older than those 30-somethings and feel you can’t compete
- You want to be with others with similar experiences and feelings about being single – not just to complain about men
- Your friends are all married and you no longer feel comfortable with them (or they with you)
- You are looking for new ways to have your social and emotional needs met
- You need skills for communicating your needs to a current (or future) partner
- You want tools for feeing less different, more solid within yourself – with or without a man
Rediscover Your OWN Voice as a Strong Single Woman
One of the main objectives of the Unique Retreat for Single Women is to help you
find your OWN voice about what it means to be single … which allows you to:
- Stop blaming yourself for being single
- Effectively cope with bias from society, family and friends
- Get what you want from your relationships
- Get the support and understanding you need from other single women … and others who love you
- Recognize and avoid negative situations that will bombard you with criticism and unsupportive messages
During our 48 hours together, you will
free yourself from the tentacles of society’s stereotypes about singles – both the glamorous
images and the stigmas. You will find your authentic self as a woman who happens to be single … as opposed to your being a
single woman. You will feel fulfilled, peaceful, and empowered – with or without a man.
What You’ll Discover During This Retreat
During the Unique Retreat for Single Women, we’ll explore a variety of important topics. When you participate, you will:
- Recognize how you have absorbed blatant and subtle social messages about being single – and how they have negatively affected you
- Learn how to “remove” these messages and design your own positive ones
- Stop blaming yourself for being single (as every single woman has been conditioned to do!)
- Learn to spot and avoid negative situations that contribute to your feeling bad about being single
- Skillfully change your response to other’s criticisms … and effectively cope with bias from society, family and friends
- Learn to communicate more effectively with a man, becoming clearer about expressing your needs … and firmer about getting a response
- Become aware of how you may be negatively dealing with your sexual feelings in the absence having a partner
- Create rituals for celebrating major and minor events of your life as a single
- Discover a planful agenda for thinking about being a mother (if that’s what you want)
- Devise a new and more satisfying system for organizing your social life
- Design a “Friendship Garden” that enhances your current friendships and leaves space for making new ones
- Identify the myths about being depressed because you are single
- Recognize the need for physical touch and the effect of its absence
- Strategize for overcoming touch deprivation
- Understanding the gnawing pain of the not knowing if you will ever meet a man of your choice
- Unearth your “Missing Something”
- Access a new level of personal power
- Possess your own Self-Assessment Test to gauge how well you are doing in nine aspects of your life as a single
- Gain guidance and clarity on the unique challenges you face as a single woman
- Develop your personal plan for moving ahead differently … for however long you are single
Meet Your Retreat Leader
Hi, I’m Dr. Karen Gail Lewis, author of seven books, including With or Without a Man: Single Women Taking Control of Their Lives and 11 Stories on the Reality of Being Single in a Married World. I’ve been a marriage and family therapist for more than 38 years, dividing my time between offices in Bethesda, Ohio, and Silver Spring, MD
I’ve appeared and been featured in dozens of top U.S. newspapers and magazines, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Today, Cosmopolitan, Woman's Day, and Ladies Home Journal. I also write a regular on-line column, "The Women’s Room” for MySingleSpace.org.
Since 1984, I’ve been on the faculty of the University of Bethesda Medical School, Virginia Polytechnic Institute Family Therapy Program, Johns Hopkins Medical School, and the University of Santiago, Chile. I’ve served on the editorial boards of three professional journals and was also a book review editor for another journal. I hold a Master's Degree in Social Work, a Doctorate in Consulting Psychology … and proudly display a clogging diploma among my professional certifications.
In 1996, I began Unique Retreats for Women. It has been so popular that I now offer a minimum of 4 different types of retreats each year: Women Ready for Change, Single Women, Women Married (or Previously Married) to Highly Successful Husbands, and Women and Their Siblings
“It was an inspiring weekend. Cannot thank you enough. It’s unreal how this has changed my outlook on my life and how I feel I’ve gained far more than I came
with. Leaving with so much knowledge in so many areas of my life, I believe will change my life forever. Thank you SO much.”
~ Leslie D. , Bethesda, MD
“This retreat gave me what I needed, in the place I needed, surrounded by people I needed at this moment in my life.”
~ F.E., Bethesda, Ohio
“I more than enjoyed the weekend, I VALUE it. I do feel differently. It is a return of some of my missing ‘spirit.’”
~ S.W, New Haven, CT
“The ability to find common ground with women from so many different backgrounds, I thought it was particularly moving. It allowed me to go much deeper than
I expected, like almost an entire weekend of individual therapy. I thank it opened up a lot of nooks in my mind that I didn’t know I had … or was unwilling to
open. I can’t say I had specific goals going into the weekend, but it addressed exactly what I needed, which was to begin to explore what I wanted and how to
~ Kim, Bethesda
“The retreat didn’t meet my expectations; it exceeded them … I had revelations here that years of therapy really didn’t uncover in so clear-cut realization ….
Feeling of safety to say whatever I felt I needed to say. …And I love the way you can admit you are wrong and change course … I’ve done a number of workshops,
and this undoubtedly was the most powerful for me … so much commonality among a diverse group of people. I don’t think this was planned but your guidance
helped create this cohesion …. It was an amazing weekend.
~ Karen C., KY
“Karen is a gentle, insightful and creative group facilitator. I enjoyed the myriad of assignments and various ways in which we shared.”
~ T.H., Psychiatrist
“Thank you, Karen, for being flexible in our teaching style to address the needs of everyone in our class.”
~ SK, Richmond, VA
“It gave me perspective and a chance to think about myself and where to go from here. I keep trying to do this on my own but never made it.”
~ P.R., Silver Spring, MD
“I was thrilled to get a breakthrough and be able to openly speak of my worst feelings.”
~ L.M., Alexandria, VA
“I really liked the exercises. They helped me see things in a different light.”
~ L.G., Columbus, OH
“Thanks for such a nurturing and caring retreat. I feel you do these out of genuine interest in people and not necessarily for financial gain.”
~ N.N, Tampa, FL
“The weekend was so effective; I marvel at how non-complex it was, yet so good. Such a combination is always an indication of true skill. It was what I
needed when I needed it. I’m grateful.”
~ I.S., Philadelphia, PA
“I appreciate your sensitivity to each one of us. Making sure we all were heard and understood.”
~ Anonymous, Bethesda, MD
“I signed up because I seem to be missing an essential part of myself at this stage of my life, an inner spark or core I seem to have misplaced. I found it.
The retreat was an experience I won’t forget.”
~ Anonymous, Loveland, Ohio
“I reaffirmed some things for myself that I knew, but had forgotten.”
~ C.T., Vienna, VA
This list is just a start! Bring your own challenges and questions about being single or single again.
Although I can’t tell you exactly what we’ll discuss at any given point, I can guarantee this:
there will be laughter, perhaps some tears… and lots of healing.
How the Retreat Works
This is not a weekend full of lectures; there are no speakers.
Instead, the retreat will focus on helping you deal with your specific issues about being single.
Each day is divided into three sessions: morning, afternoon, and evening. The times we are together working on the issues are called “workshops”;
There will be several workshops each day. These highly interactive sessions incorporate group discussions,
imaginary conversations, imagery, experiential exercises, and lots of other creative techniques designed to
help you dig deeper and fully process what you are learning.
Throughout the retreat, we’ll use exercises from Workbook for With or Without A Man, one of the bonuses you’ll receive with your registration
package, to help you process and integrate the lessons you’re learning. We’ll also use a Self-Assessment Test to help you gauge how well you are
doing in taking control of 9 areas of your life.
Each workshop concludes with an assignment and is followed by free time to absorb what we’ve discussed and to think about
how it applies to you. Feel free to take a walk, sit on the grass, or relax in your room as you do your assignment. (You can even feel free to NOT do your assignment … as there no “musts” this weekend!)
During the last workshop, you’ll create your own “action plan,” which will spell out how you’ll use your own voice differently … and what about your life you want to be different as a result of this 48-hour retreat.
6 Months of Support to Help You Implement Your Plan
Too often, women leave a retreat feeling energized … but then they slip back into their “normal” life come Monday morning.
Unlike other retreats that are finished after the last day’s closing session, the
Unique Retreat for Single Women builds in six monthly follow-up group telephone sessions. We’ll gather as a small
group for 90 minutes once a month so that you can get support and guidance on the challenges you’re facing as you integrate your newfound knowledge,
beliefs and voice.
For more information, click here or call 1-301-585-5814.
I look forward to accompanying you on this journey of self-discovery and freedom … and as you rediscover your own voice.
Dr. Karen Gail Lewis
P.S. Not sure if this retreat is right for you? Call me at 1-301-585-5814.
P.P.P.P.S. Part of your program fee may be reimbursable under your medical insurance plan. Call me at 1-301-585-5814 for details.