It’s not every day that a person gets to see themselves on TV and reflect on their life. But for Rachel Farris of the first season of Seven Year Switch, she got just that opportunity. She and then-husband CW signed up for switch therapy with hopes of repairing their rickety marriage, but Farris gained more from the process than she had expected. As four new couples take on the challenge of switching spouses for two weeks in the second season of Seven Year Switch, we asked Rachel seven questions about how she’s been since filming, what she took away from the process and any advice she has for the new participants.
How have you been since season 1 of Seven Year Switch filmed and aired?
I’ve been healing emotionally and reconnecting with my creative spirit that had been suppressed. It was a lot of work to rebuild what I had lost of myself. I’m so happy now! I’ve been writing a lot and I’m recording new music with amazing producers. I’ve been performing in places such as Costa Rica as well as teaching music to kids in Nosara. I sing in a rock music choir to raise money for homeless youth. I booked one of my all-time favorite voiceover jobs to date. I’m enjoying a peaceful single life, time with family and friends and taking care of my house in Nashville, TN. I did not get a dog, but I was tempted to at times! I’m so thankful for all the Seven Year Switch fans who keep reaching out to me from all over the world after reading my blog updates. They light up my days and I’ll never forget each and every note they sent to encourage me.
I will forever be grateful to switch therapy for saving my life instead of my marriage. I might have been buried forever had I not seen the light of truth and the clarity I found during the switch separation. I still have hope that I will find true love someday soon.
What are three things that you learned from the advice of the experts and the switch therapy experiment itself?
Don’t listen to what your spouse tells you about who you are. Labels aren’t always beneficial. Watch out with those (introvert, sensitive, etc.). Don’t let someone else in so close that they can move things around in your psyche. It’s challenging when it’s your partner and they know you the best. You start to believe they know the truth about you more than anyone else. In most cases their feedback is safe to rely on, but ultimately nobody can truly know you like you know yourself. So trust yourself when it comes to who you are.
Do you have any regrets about participating in the experiment?
I regret not doing more elaborate activities and going on fun trips with my switch partner. I also regret getting sick during the experiment, but I couldn’t help that one!
Do you still keep in contact with your experimental spouse Eric or anyone else from the SYS experiment?
I follow them on social media and see their updates, but we haven’t gotten together or anything. I’d totally be up for that. It would be nice to catch up with them.
What advice would you give to new couples entering the switch therapy experiment?
I would say try to open up as quickly as possible to make the most of your time. Tell jokes! Try to lighten up the mood and if your switch partner is not giving it their all, find ways to learn about yourself by watching how you react to their behavior. You can use the rare opportunity to grow beyond your wildest dreams and become more conscious. It can help you for the rest of your life.
How involved are you in music and what are your plans for the future?
I am very involved in music. It’s impossible for me not to be. I’m writing, recording, and growing as an artist always. I plan to release new music and creative music videos. You might not recognize the new me though! I’m putting together a team of remarkable people to help me accomplish my goals. I can’t do it alone. I am happiest when people are touched by my songs and when I’m surrounded by open-minded, humble, loving people. That’s what I’ve finally found. I couldn’t be more thankful.
Is there anything else you’d like people to know about yourself or the experiment since it ended?
I’m definitely not entirely the version of me you saw on screen. I’m much stronger, more free spirited and not burdened by overwhelming emotional pain. For those who haven’t experienced my particular past relationship dynamic, they may not understand what happened to me. I know people don’t change much, but I think I have in substantial ways. It has a lot to do with being under major relationship stress, in severe emotional pain and embarking on the most bizarre experiment while under those conditions. I’m so glad I did it, but I’m not sure how. Sometimes it can take extreme conditions to open our eyes.