Nutshell synopsis: In the most emotionally charged episode yet, Chilli (at Tionna's suggestion) visits a professional therapist and, following a heart-wrenching session, Chilli really seems to have gotten at the core of why she's lacked success finding a man and puts in place a new action plan for going forward.
Segment 1: Following the blow-up between Chilli and Tionna at the end of last week's episode, the two meet at Chilli's house the next morning for a workout. Chilli indicates that she's still a bit pissed, but also says she's open to re-evaluating her dependence upon her "Chilli Checklist" (her stringent list of attributes that her man must have). Tionna thinks that Chilli could benefit from seeing a professional therapist, and Chilli seems agreeable. There will be no more dates for Chilli for now, says Tionna, since Tionna concludes that Chilli should focus on her own issues first. Then they start their workout (with Chilli indicating outside Tionna's hearing that since Chilli is still a little mad about the previous night, Chilli's really "gonna work her out"). First jumping jacks, then light weights, then pushups. Both Chilli and Tionna are working hard. Then Chilli says, "So let's get to the workout." Tionna observes, "That wasn't it?"
The segment then switches to a TLC photo shoot with Chilli and T-Boz. This brief opportunity to get away from the regular events of "What Chilli Wants" seems to be a refreshing change for Chilli. She vents a bit about Tionna to T-Boz, noting that Tionna's "ass is 25" and complaining about Tionna "pissing [her] off" at the end of the last episode. Chilli confides in T-Boz that she has agreed to Tionna's suggestion for Chilli to see a therapist, and then jokes that Tionna should see one too: "She needs some damn help!" (couldn't we all, BTW -- nothing wrong with that!)
Segment 2: Tionna has Chilli meet with a couple who's been together almost 50 years. They are referred to as Ms. Annie and Mr. Ralph. The purpose of the meeting is so that Chilli can meet and interact with two people who have found "true, everlasting love." Ms. Annie reveals that the key to her relationship with Mr. Ralph was "learning to compromise" (saying that there were always certain things about him that she didn't really like). Mr. Ralph then offers his own views on what makes a lasting relationship: "When you find a soulmate, they become your best friend, and there's nothing you wouldn't do for each other." Then Ms. Annie lends some advice specific to Chilli, telling Chilli that she won't find all the qualities she wants in any given man, but that if she can find a man totally devoted to a lasting relationship with her, then she should be able to let go of some of that control that is indicative of her Chilli Checklist.
In the second half of this segment, Chilli has dinner with her son Tron. Chilli looks forward to when Tron is a bit older and starts dating young women, and she's grooming him for those future days. Chilli notes that she has "dibs on Sasha Obama" as a potential future date for Tron. She also advises him (as almost any good mother -- or father, for that matter -- would) not to smack when he eats. She also gives him the advice that if he does nice things for a young lady, and if the young lady does not appreciate that, then he has probably met the wrong young lady. Then, as an apparent surprise to both Chilli and Tron, Tron's dad (and music producer) Dallas Austin shows up out of the blue. It's a nice moment, because Tron loves to see his dad, and despite the fact that things never worked out between Chilli and Austin, she does credit him for being a "great father" to Tron.
Segment 3: Chilli, with Tionna tagging along, meets with therapist Dr. Tiffany Davis. Near the start of the session, Dr. Davis asks Tionna to excuse herself for a little while so that Dr. Davis and Chilli can have a real heart-to-heart. After Tionna exits, Dr. Davis asks Chilli to talk about her past boyfriends. Chilli starts with Tron's father, Dallas Austin, with whom Chilli was first involved at around age 20 as a member of TLC. As indicated in this report's title, Chilli absolutely bares her soul at this point. She says that early on in their relationship, Chilli got pregnant. During this period, Chilli was very scared and felt that she lacked support. The voices around her were tugging her in the direction of not going forward with the pregnancy, since she was only 20 and in a hot group, whose success might be jeopardized by a nine-month pregnancy and the motherhood that would follow.
Chilli then reveals that she gave in and broke to that pressure and decided to have (and did have) an abortion. Chilli cries, further revealing that this ordeal "broker her spirit" and really "messed her up." She says that thereafter, she didn't "feel like I'm my strong self anymore." She says she very much regrets having the abortion and says that she cries almost every day since about her decision. Chilli also says that she tried her best to make up for what she believes was a bad decision by devoting herself to having a child with Austin (which obviously led to Tron's birth). Finally, she says that things just never worked out between herself and Austin since "he was always true to himself" and "I wasn't try to myself" during their relationship.
Chilli then talks briefly about her relationship with Usher. She says that she loved him, but that he just wasn't working as a long-term relationship. Ultimately, she found him to be a guy with whom she just couldn't live for the rest of her life. The segment concludes with Chilli agreeing with the therapist that Chilli is willing, in her future relationship endeavors, to "go outside the comfort zone" supplied by her Chilli Checklist if she meets a man who is also willing to depart from his own comfort zone (seems like Ms. Annie's advice of "learning to compromise" has begun to sink in).
Final segment: Dr. Davis and Chilli bring Tionna back into the room. Dr. Davis reveals to Tionna that there is "good news," since Dr. Davis and Chilli have gotten at some real issues and have found a way of going forward. They discuss how Chilli's Checklist resulted from a "place of hurt" in Chilli's life, meaning that following failed attempts by Chilli to "led with her heart" in relationships (such as with Austin and Usher), Chilli threw out the heart and completely "led with her head", resulting in the creation of and adherence to the Chilli Checklist. Chilli says that she is willing to consider a serious relationship with a man who does not meet all the attributes of her Checklist, i.e. she is willing to start opening her heart again, in addition to following her head, when it comes to the men in her life. End of episode.
Quick final thought: While I've always been personally skeptical of professional therapists and the good they truly do for those who visit them, I have to say that Dr. Davis really seemed to be a professional on the top of her game. She very quickly appeared to get the root of Chilli's angst and to offer constructive potential solutions to the same. I was impressed. Best of luck to Chilli and Tionna going forward as they work on instituting the new action plan that resulted from this episode!
Preview segment to upcoming episodes: Tionna sets Chilli up with some dude named "Farmer D" (or "Farmer Dee" -- I don't think they put the spelling on the screen, much like my Dolvette/Dalvette quandary from earlier in the series!). At any rate, Farmer D seems like a real trip, and I can't wait to see that one! Also, Tionna organizes a multi-dude "mixer" so that Chilli can meet a number of guys at the same time. I've loved this series from the outset, and the remaining episodes, I'm sure, will not disappoint!