Dear 'GMA' Advice Guru Top 20 Finalists: Edward Freeman

PHOTO Dear GMA Advice Guru Contest.ABC News
Dr. Ed Freeman is a finalist in the Dear GMA Advice Guru Contest.

Edward Freeman from Killeen, Texas, is a finalist in the Dear GMA Advice Guru Contest. Read his application below!

Essay

This is the toughest section of the whole process, having to talk about myself, but we will give it a go. As I mentioned in one of the other sections, I am an M.D., a psychiatrist as a matter of fact. Giving advice on numerous psycho/social topics is what I do all day and for me it is wonderful. I have always wanted to be a physican since the age of forever and that never changed for me. When I rose to the level of medical training, that is where I had my first brush with potential failure. It was during that struggle that I really got to know myself and to really come to terms with the real me... not the person I thought I was or should be but the good, the bad and the ugly that dwelled within. I finally became comfortable with me and truly internalized those values my parents had worked so hard to instill in me. When I got back into medical school I was a different person and I believe that is when I found my true calling and psychiatry picked me. I believe the combination of the medical, psychological, forensic, as well as the sojourn of my protracted medical training has helped me to be analytical as well as empathic. In addition, I know my work with the hundreds of soldiers and their families I have treated here in Fort Hood/Killeen,Texas, where my family and I have lived for the last six years, has truly given me an opportunity to diagnose, treat and advise people on topics involving every aspect of their lives. I do indeed believe I have the skills training and know how to be your Advice Guru.

What's the best advice you have ever given? What was the result?

I believe the best advice I ever gave was to myself, strange as that may sound. I was out of med school and trying everything I could to get back in but was getting nowhere. I didn't know what to do. I felt as if all was lost and that I was never going to acheive my lifelong dream of becoming a doctor. So I asked myself, "What would you tell someone else in this same situation?" The answer became clear and it was simply, "If this is what you really want to do and it is your dream, then don't give up and keep pushing." So that is exactly what I did. The road was no less difficult but it did finally lead me to my dream of becoming an MD. I'm so glad I listened to my own advice, which originally came to me from my parents over the years.

Edward Freeman is Finalist in GMA Advice Guru Contest

What would you tell this person: "Whenever there is an issue between my mother-in-law and me, my husband refuses to stand up for me. How do I get him to value our relationship more than the one with his mother?

Obviously you value your marriage and so I think it will be important for you to let your husband know that you love him and that you need his support in this relationship. Let him know that the two of you need to stand united even when it comes to his mother and that standing with you does not mean that he is abandoning his mother. Also remind him of the covenant that the two of you made when you got married to love honor and cherish, forsaking all others. But also support his relationship with his mother so hopefully he won't feel that it is a competiton for his love or loyality. Don't be afraid to seek couples counseling if you feel that your efforts aren't working.

What would you tell this person: "While cleaning my son's room, I accidentally saw on his Facebook page threatening remarks from his friends. I fear he's being bullied. What should I do?"

This can be a very serious matter, but don't panic but be persistant. Talk to your son. See where he is with this. Does he seem to be bothered by this or is he giving as good as he is getting? If you believe that this is truly a hostile situation then be honest with your son and let him know how you feel about this. If needed, contact your son's friends and or their parents if possible. Now, I realize this maybe hard for your son to understand but the ramifications of this could be very serious if left unattended. If it turns out to be nothing, then good. This will have been one of those times that helps you stay connected to your son, which has and always will be vital to his development and your joy as well. As always seek professional help if you think your son maybe experiencing serious emotional difficulties or if this problem continues or worsens.

Finalist Edward Freeman Could be New GMA Advice Guru

What would you tell this person: "My boss keeps taking credit for my ideas. What should I do?"

It sounds as if you need to sit down and have a good talk with your boss and see if this can be worked out between the two of you. If not, depending on the type of work setting you are in, you may have the option of going to your human resources person. But be careful -- you may want to weigh the risk of possibly putting your job in jeopardy. Stand your ground but you may need to tread lightly. Also, you may consider looking for another job even in these tough times. Ultimately, you are going to have to decide what is important to you -- your dignity and pride or your job. But with good communication it may work out just fine.

Submissions have been edited for length, style and clarity.