Archive for March, 2011

Cultural Differences In Your Relationship

This posting is a beginning discussion of differences people might bring into their relationships.  Other postings will address class, education, religious, and geographic differences.  There are some common ways to address these differences, and some require special handling.  You should have your therapist help you sort out how best to proceed. The saying goes, “Loves […]

Interesting Thoughts About Cigarettes

There are some important things about cigarettes that you might want to consider. We all know about cancer, emphysema, and the effects on other organs.  That should be enough to stop people from smoking.  So should the dangers of second-hand smoke for those close to you.  We love those people and we don’t want to […]

Relationships and Money

You and your partner are fighting about money.  So, what else is new?  Did you discuss how you both think about money before you got serious?  Did you sign a prenuptial agreement so that at least you knew what was what?  Did circumstances change during your time together so that you have to re-argue everything?   […]

Is your Job Hurting Your Marriage?

Like many Americans, you may be working at a job you don’t exactly love. In fact, you may hate it. But, you can’t complain-at least you HAVE a job- with benefits no less. The typical signs of job dissatisfaction aren’t too hard to recognize: alot of complaining, wishing you had a different job, looking for another job, […]

Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse can cause a lot of hurt, anger, and fear.  There are some obvious forms of emotional abuse such as name calling.  There are more subtle signs, such as intimidation, that are important to be aware of as well. Verbal abuse is a form of emotional abuse.  This can include name calling, insults, or […]

How to Keep Tough Parenting Decisions from Hurting your Relationship

Should our 5 year old daughter get her ears pierced? Should we let our 10 year old wear makeup?  Should our 14 year old go on an overnight trip with a group of friends? Is our 13 year old ready to date?  All of these questions have one thing common-tough decision making. You may worry that […]

Responding to Your Spouse’s Behaviors

How do you react when your spouse does something particularly nice? How about when they do something you do not like? Our responses have a big impact on the likelihood of these behaviors ending or continuing. For example, consider a husband who tends to spend time with his friends after work a few times per […]

Disagreements About Finances

Many couples find finances to be a big source of stress.  It does not seem to matter how much money couples have, they often still disagree on how to spend it. Deciding how much money to save and how much money to spend can create problems when couples do not agree. Avoid ignoring financial problems.  […]

Do Soulmates Exist?

As little girls we often think about our “prince charming” and daydream about our wedding day. We imagine falling in love with a tall, dark, and handsome man, spending hours and hours with him, and getting proposed to in the most romantic way imaginable. As we get older we start wondering when and if this […]

How to have a “Good” Argument

Conflict is inevitable. We may argue over something silly such as who should take the trash out, or something more serious like parenting differences. One thing is certain–arguments happen. It is normal for a marriage to have it’s share of conflict-the key is how we respond. Everyone has an arguing style-you may avoid conflict, always […]

Giving to the Marriage and Not Taking From the Marriage

Many people report wanting a better relationship with their partner.  However, often times people are quick to point out changes their partner needs to make, instead of recognizing the changes that they can make to improve the marriage.  Focusing on what changes you think your partner makes does nothing to improve the marriage, and often […]

Adult Children Moving Back Home

You did your job. You raised your kids and sent them off to college. They had four glorious years away from home and finally graduated from college. You thought you were home free. But wait; they are moving back home! You finally got used to having an empty house and are enjoying the quiet time […]

Inexpensive Ways to Spend Quality Time Together

Many couples report less time and less money than ever before.  As a result, their relationship experiences less quality time together and fewer dates.  Increased life stress tends to put more stress on relationships.  When life becomes stressful, it is the most important thing to spend quality time with your partner. Quality time together does […]

Addiction in Families

Addiction of any sort is a serious issue for any individual.  It creates even more problems for people in couples and families.  Everybody becomes part of the chaos and destruction the addicted person brings to the scene.  Not only are the effects immediate, causing emotional, social, physical, and financial disorder, but they can be long […]

What To Do About Infidelity

So you just learned that your mate has been unfaithful. You feel hurt, angry, and most important, betrayed. All your trust has been violated. All your hopes and expectations are destroyed.  Does it mean the end of the relationship?  What about the kids?  The pets? Not necessarily.  So, what should you do?  You’ll be angry […]


Are you depressed?  Are you worried about being depressed? Do you know why you’re depressed?   Does that make you more depressed?  Anxious?  Are you losing sleep, or sleeping too much?  Not eating enough or too much?  Are you snapping at people?  Withdrawing from them?  Drinking, using, or smoking too much? Go see a therapist.  Your […]

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Couples

Cognitive behavioral therapy helps alleviate symptoms of depression, anxiety, and trauma.  It can also help couples.  Cognitive behavioral treatment addresses how people think as well as how they behave. Couples treatment that utilizes cognitive behavioral therapy helps each individual recognize distorted thought patterns.  Perhaps one partner feels frustrated that their partner works long hours and […]

Solving Problems Together in the Marriage

The way couples tackle problems reveals a lot about their relationship.  Working together to constructively solve problems reduces stress and increases the strength of the marriage.  Developing good problem-solving skills helps couples decide how to respond to problems together. Everyone solves problems on a daily basis, yet we rarely stop to consider how we arrived […]

What Couples Want!

By Maria C. Ramos, MS, MFT Counselor Through my experiences in counseling couples, I have found that both males & females want exactly the same thing from their relationships. Both expect respect, acceptance, understanding, communication, reciprocated love, and time shared with their partner. I found this surprising because the overall perception is that sex would […]

What children need

Take Time To Do: Sometimes, as parents, we are so busy trying to focus on things we feel are necessary to make our children happy that we lose track of what really makes children happy. Of course, we are subject to be guided by the latest trend in toys, electronics, cell phones, etc., but in […]