Here is how the couple, sitting together in the kitchen, recall the scene. And honey, you know, I want you to tell me that you love me,' because he never did." Cesar: "Wait a minute.There was no `honey' in that [speech]." Ilusion: "Okay, whatever. "No, this is my wife when she wants to get some shit across: `Cesar! What other couples might see as exhausting, however, the Millans, perched side by side on tall stools, treat as a blessing—because there was a time they had trouble communicating at all.
Marriage, as anyone who's tried it can attest, is an ongoing project. After 16 years together, their goal is to appreciate rather than resent their differences. For example, when Ilusion gets hurt, it can take her a while to get over it.
And both Millans are searchers who've delved into all manner of selfhelp literature (the D. And during that period, as she searches to understand what exactly has led her to feel as she does, she wants Cesar to be sweet to her—even though, she acknowledges, she's not being very sweet to him.
"But she doesn't apply the same thing to herself," Cesar says. "I would like to have sex with you even though I'm angry." Ilusion rolls her eyes.
When Ilusion is upset, he's supposed to be patient and cuddle her, "which is opposite of what she'd do if I were going through my process." Ilusion appraises him unflinchingly. I go to sadness, and for a woman, being sad, you want comforting. Anyone who's watched Dog Whisperer With Cesar Millan knows that while dog owners may think their dogs are the problem, actually the problem is them.
She almost died, she says, but Cesar didn't visit her until days after the surgery.
"He came to visit for two hours, but he was like, `I can't believe you're sick.' He was so annoyed." And the day she came home, "He's like, `I've got to get back to my dogs.' " Not long after, Ilusion told Cesar goodbye. "I asked God: `Why you give me the strongest, most stubborn woman in the world? Mimicking what he'd seen his father and uncles do, "I just focused on everything she did wrong," he says, a list that went "all the way from Alaska to Argentina.
"I was there in my heart, but my heart was blocked." When Cesar was growing up on a farm in Culiacán, Mexico, his affinity for canines earned him the nickname El Perrero, or "the dog man." It also got him teased.
"He was afraid to love anybody." "I didn't do it with humans, that's all," Cesar says, matter-of-factly.
When Millan and his wife, Ilusion, aren't taking turns bobbling a friend's baby on their knees or admiring their youngest son's new braces, they are talking excitedly. It's a Latino thing, Cesar explains: "Everything is so loud." Ilusion agrees: "I'm naturally a loud person. Like—" "That's so true," interjects Ilusion, vibrant in a hot pink sleeveless turtleneck and pants ironed to a sharp crease. Cesar says he was happy to exchange vows— he believed in family—but saw his wife more as a necessary encumbrance than as an equal partner.