Dr Oz: Starting Over After Memory Loss + Revive Your Marriage


Dr Oz: Married Couple Starting Over After Surgery

Dr Oz shared the incredible story of a couple who was forced to face a devastating, unexpected curveball in their own lives. A woman shared that she met Richard  when she was 17-years-old at a high school dance. In high school, Richard was athlete of the year and was incredibly smart. They got married and had two children, and she admitted that she felt like she was always in Richard’s shadow and wasn’t sure if they were going to make it.


In 2000, Richard was diagnosed with a rare cancer and underwent a successful surgery, but three years later the cancer came back, so he decided to undergo a more extensive surgery. After he woke up, Richard appeared more withdrawn, shy, and just different. Richard admitted that he had no memories of his life before the surgeries, at all. Because he was unable to speak, every time the nurse would give him writing tools, he would write “who is here, who has been here, and who is coming?”

Dr Oz: Starting Over After Memory Loss + Revive Your Marriage

Dr Oz heard from a couple who had to basically start from scratch after the husband lost his memory. (kumon / Flickr)


Richard said he felt both sad and frustrated that he was unable to connect with his wife and kids. He didn’t even know how to start a conversation. Finally, it was revealed that Richard had a sort of brain injury, where the brain lost oxygen. Everything was new for Richard, so he knew he had to be the best person he could be for his wife. They basically had to learn how to fall in love all over again.

Dr Oz: “Wondering Who You Are”

Richard said it’s been 12 years since the surgery, so he’s seen a lot of pictures and heard a lot of stories, so he’s not sure if what he knows are true memories or memories that have been planted there. The wife explained that she really had to grieve the loss of her huband and their marriage. Dr Oz explained that at the base of the brain, is the hippocampus, which is where you process and store information. The hippocampus was damaged during Richard’s surgery.

The woman, Sonya Lea, wrote a book about their journey titled “Wondering Who You Are.”

Dr Oz: Steps To Revive Your Marriage

Sonya and Richard then wanted to share what they’ve learned to help you revive your own marriage, saying they believe all couples are capable of falling in love again. Dr Oz was then joined by a couple from the audience who have been married for seven years, have five kids, but feel like they’ve lost the connection they used to have. Because of the kids and the husband working nights, it felt like they weren’t really enjoying each other anymore.

The first thing Sonya suggested was the “do what you want” experiment. Sonya said she began with just 15 minutes of doing what she wanted, because she didn’t really know who she was anymore. That time helped her connect with herself. The second step is to take technology out of the bedroom. The husband said “goodbye ESPN” and then said he was willing to do it because he loves his wife to death.

Third, Sonya suggested they go for a walk together in a new town. Richard explained that, because of the surgery, he went from bing primarily verbal to primarily kinesthetic. When he was walking, it took the pressure to talk away. He said it could even work with your kids to get a conversation going. Dr Oz then surprised the couple with a night in a hotel and told them to go and enjoy themselves.

Dr Oz: Beer Bellies

Before the end of the show, Dr Oz looked at beer bellies, explaining that for years, they were called that because it was believed beer was the culprit. The reason your belly tends to expand when drinking beer is because the average bottle of beer contains about 150 calories, which means if you have more than one beer, you’re taking in a lot of calories because your stomach can’t tell the difference between a beer calorie and a food calorie. It’s called a beer belly because you tend to drink much of it to get the same buzz you would get with other alcohols.


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