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June 02, 1989 - Image 71

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1989-06-02

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

ENTERTAINMENT

Sonya On The Go

COMEDY

Celebrity
psychologist
Sonya Friedman
splits her time
between Detroit
and Los Angeles.

COMEDY CASTLE
2593 Woodward, Berkley,
Eddie Merrill, today and
Saturday; Barry
Diamond, Tuesday
through June 10,
admission, 542-9900.

THEATER

MAIDA PORTNOY

Special 71) The Jewish News

N

orthwest Airlines
appreciates passen-
gers like Sonya
Friedman. She is
one of their most frequent
flyers.
Friedman, the well known
psychologist and media
celebrity, hosts a two-hour
CNN cable show weekdays in
Los Angeles, spends most
weekends with her family in
West Bloomfield and figures
she flies approximately
125,000 job-related miles per
year.
Three years ago, Friedman
recognized the CNN oppor-
tunity as the highlight of her
media career and one she
could not refuse, though it
would involve compromise
and adjustment for the strik-
ingly pretty, blue-eyed blonde
and her family.
"There are a lot of impor-
tant jobs and a lot of fun jobs
to be done," is the way the
veteran of Detroit radio
(WXYZ) and television
(WDIV-Channel 4) explains
it. "I've raised my children
and they are good con-
tributing- people. These are
the best years of my life and
if I don't take advantage of
them now, there's never going
to be another opportunity,"
she explains.
"As I stop and think about
it, I'm hardly a Golda Mein I
can't compare myself, but I
rather doubt that she turned
around and said to (her hus-
band) Meyer: 'So, Meyer,
should I found the state of
Israel or not?' I'm sure there
are a lot of people who didn't
want her to do that. I'm a
woman who feels women
should be equally as par-
ticipating in society as men
are."
Though 20 percent of the

clients in her small
psychology practice today are
male, women remain her
special interest group,
motivating and encouraging
them to be emotionally and
financially independent.
"My role with men," she ex-
plains, "is to try to help them
communicate and understand
women (but) my role with
women is to help them
change their lives from black
and white to multicolored.
There's a difference."
That difference was pointed
out years ago to Friedman by
her mother-in-law, the late
Dr. Leah Hecht Friedman, an
orthodontist who marched in
the first suffragette parade in
New York City. The former
Sonia Kiel met her future
mother-in-law when she was
14.
"I have a tremendous moral
obligation to Leah," Fried-
man has said on many occa-
sions. "She is the person in-

fluential in my going to col-
lege. She said 'yes' when all
around me said 'no: "
It wasn't all smooth sailing
from that time on, though.
During Friedman's freshman
year at Brooklyn College, she
was summoned to her ad-
viser's office.
Armed with the frightened
16-year-old student's IQ test
score, high school records and
current college grades, the ad-
viser asked: "What are you
doing with these crummy
grades?" She further inform-
ed Sonya that the college was
indeed tuition-free but only to
those with good grades. To
this day, Friedman recalls
how quickly she turned her
academic standing around.
The best selling author of
Men Are Just Desserts, Smart
Cookies Don't Crumble, and A
Hero Is More Than Just
Another Sandwich, is cur-
rently working on her fourth
book. It is a self-help treatise

that talks about growing up
before growing old.
"It
is
particularly
(dedicated) to women who I
think have traded themselves
in and have foolishly main-
tained a fantasy that, if they
can just hold out long enough,
somebody will give them
what they want."
Friedman's background dif-
fers from many of her peers
because she never grew up
with any such expectations.
Her parents divorced when
she was 3 she rarely saw her
father, and her mother, a bit-
terly unhappy woman, remar-
ried a man who already had
a daughter and wasn't par-
ticularly interested in assum-
ing the role of the benevolent
stepfather.
"I had a roof over my head,
food and some basic needs but
I never asked for money .. .
There was nothing for me
unless I made it myself,"
recalls Friedman who, from

DETROIT
REPERTORY
THEATER
13103 Woodrow Wilson
Ave., Detroit, Enchanted
Night, Charlie and Out
At Sea, now through
June 25, admission,
868-1347.
PERFORMANCE
NETWORK
408 W. Washington, Ann
Arbor, Riffs: A Theater
and Blues Cabaret,
Wednesday and
Thursday; dance party
following featuring
Johnny Yardog Blues
Band, Wednesday, and
Idyll Roomers, Thursday,
admission, 435-7859.
SHAW FESTIVAL
Niagara-on-the-Lake,
Ontario, Man and
Superman, now through
Oct. 15; Berkeley Square,
now through Oct. 14;
and Once in a Lifetime,
now through July 23,
admission, (416)
468-2172.
BIRMINGHAM
THEATRE
211 S. Woodward,
Birmingham, The Nerd,
now through June 18,
admission, 644-3533.
DETROIT INSTITUTE
OF ARTS
5200 Woodward Avenue,
Detroit, Grandma Moses
— An American
Primitive, starring Cloris
Leachman, 8 p.m.
Tuesday, Wednesday and
Thursday, 2 p.m.
Wednesday, admission,
832-2730.

MUSIC

BIRMINGHAM
SUMMER CONCERT
SERIES
Shain Park, Maple near
Woodward, downtown
Birmingham,
Farmington Community
Continued on Page ??

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

61

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