Archive for June, 2011

You Aren’t Your Diagnosis—But You Should Know It!

Should you ask your therapist what your diagnosis is?  Would you feel better or worse knowing it?  Would it enhance or break your trust with your therapist?  Here are some serious thoughts and tips. Let’s start backwards here.  Therapists must tell you what your diagnosis is to the limits of your ability to understand it.  […]

Spending Time with Friends

Spending time away from your spouse and visiting with friends and family can actually improve your relationship. Your spouse is not going to meet all of your needs all the time. It is important to try and get your needs met in other ways instead of depending on your partner, and then feeling disappointed in […]

Marriage Counseling Questions

Marriage counseling questions are one of the main ways that a counselor can help you and your partner understand where your issues developed, where they are right now, and how they can be resolved. These questions are designed to assist a couple in addressing their problems and get their relationship back on track. Here are […]

Dealing With Your Spouse’s Ex

If your spouse was married previously and had children, chances are, you have to deal with their ex. Although some families manage this well and make it look easy, this can be difficult for the majority of families. Step-parenting is a difficult task by nature. Throw in a difficult ex-spouse, and it can create some […]

How to Help Your First Child Adjust to the “Newbie”

You’re thinking of having another child.  You are concerned about how this new child will affect your present one.  Here are some tips. First, recognize that the newbie will affect the “oldbie.”  Don’t minimize the challenge s/he faces.  It’s competition for attention and energy and love.  We have two cats. Our older cat is shorthaired; […]

Asking For Help In A Marriage

Some people have difficulty directly getting their needs met. This can lead to complaining, criticizing, and indirect communication that does not yield results. Learning how to ask for help can be very helpful to both partners in the marriage. Complaining about things without directly asking for help is not likely to be helpful. For example, […]

Before Your Child Goes to College

You want your child to go to college.  Assuming the child wants to and there is money available, you should have some good family conversations about what happens next. Here are some tips: First, where should the child go to school?  Research has shown that the child’s choice of college is usually the best guarantee […]

Validating Your Partner’s Feelings

Validating your partner’s feelings can be very helpful to the relationship. Learning how to acknowledge the other person’s feelings can diffuse a lot of arguments and help the other person feel heard. It can show that you have empathy for his/her feelings even when you disagree on something. Simply stating that you recognize your partner’s […]

Take This Job-and Meanwhile, Make Yourself Happy!

Remember the old Johnny Paycheck Song, “Take this job and shove it?” It sounded tempting.  But in these tough times, it’s not realistic.  So, what do you do to make yourself happy while staying at your job? The first step is to accept two facts.  The first is that your job is less than satisfying.  […]

Do you Ever Make Threats to Your Spouse?

When you are angry at your partner do you ever make threats? Maybe you threaten to leave? Or threaten a divorce? Or threaten that your partner will never see the kids again? Or even threaten bodily harm? Whether threats are more on the minor end of the spectrum or on the major end, they can […]

Make Your Loved One’s Funeral Your Observance

Were you left out of a family ceremony? Did you feel slighted, rejected, and totally trashed? Did you have thoughts of rage, contemplating warm and cold revenge? Yes, you should feel upset – but you need to get better. So, here’s a tip. Let’s start with an example. One of my clients has had lifelong […]

Adjusting to the New Baby

You and your partner will go through some profound changes after the baby is born.  Here are some issues to think about and some tips to help both of you. Once you begin to understand the language and needs of the newborn, you will feel more comfortable in dealing with your own changes.  As mentioned […]