238: Olympian Silken Laumann on Raising Kids to Embrace Vulnerability

Released Monday, 17th June 2019
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It’s an absolute thrill for me to welcome celebrated, four-time Canadian Olympian Silken Laumann to the show. Many of you will remember Silken’s remarkable story as one of Canada’s most beloved and accomplished Olympic rowers. In 1992 she was warming up for the World Cup Regatta in Germany when another boat collided with hers at full speed. Her lower right leg received devastating injuries to bone and muscle and she was told she’d never compete at the Olympics again. But 10 weeks later she won an Olympic Bronze medal. Overcoming that difficulty is part of what’s made Silken a role model for others to overcome difficult circumstances. It’s part of what inspired her to write her book, Unsinkable, and now to host a storytelling website by the same name, with a mission to empower Canadians to achieve better mental, physical and spiritual health. With four kids in her blended family, Silken works hard to cultivate an atmosphere that’s honest and truthful about the tough stuff we go through, including mental illness. Silken speaks frankly about being raised by mother who has never accepted the help she needed for her mood disorder, as well as about Silken’s own bouts with depression. She and I delve into what it takes to cultivate a culture of openness about mental health and comfort with vulnerability in our families.
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