As days go by and time slowly slips away on our marriage journey, the diminishing sense of curiosity and excitement about our partners can often be replaced by frustration, disappointment and sometimes even a general dislike for one another. One of the most beautiful and special things about having a fantastic marriage is the ever-changing ebb and flow of our partner’s personalities, temperaments, likes, dislikes, desires, and dreams. When couples report to me that there marriage “just became stale”, I know immediately, they stopped being curious about each other. And isn’t that so easy to do with all the busyness of life, and the hustle and bustle that young children bring to our daily routines. [Read more…]
I recently gave a talk to a group of awesome people at Mariner’s Church who were either recently divorced or in the middle of a divorce. I was asked to talk to the group about what’s involved in finding love again after a divorce and how people can successfully navigate the sometimes turbulent waters of new relationships post divorce. In my experience as a therapist working with lots of people who have gone through a divorce, I’ve found there are “4 Essentials” that are necessary to finding lasting love post divorce, and if we work to ensure we have these “4 Essentials” integrated in our lives moving forward, our chances of getting everything we want in our next relationship is within our reach! [Read more…]
Have you ever caught yourself in the middle of a conflict with your partner using arguments such as “that is simply not true!” or “you’re not being rational!” or any number of “logical” statements trying to trap our partners in their web of irrational-ness! Or am I the only one that does that? When things get heated between partners, often times, our initial go-to response in attempt to defend ourselves is to employ logical and, what we believe are, highly intellectual statements to “prove” our partners wrong. Well, I blame science for this fruitless and damaging relational interaction. Science, especially in our Western cultures, has taught us that words such as “rationale”, “logic”, “proof”, and “truth”, are the holy grail of our English language and should be valued above all. However, as it goes with interpersonal relating, using scientific reasoning as a defensive strategy to against our partners “illogical” perspective has dire consequences and usually will undermine any semblance of intimacy. In this regard, “science” is wrong, and so we need to find a new vocabulary and a new way of understanding when it comes to rationale and logic.
The holiday season comes with mixed feelings for many. On one hand, we love to see Christmas lights, the changing weather, and the buzz of holiday cheer that is in the air, and on the other hand, the holiday season is often painful time for many that can be filled with stress, feelings of overwhelm, and painful interactions with family. [Read more…]
What does it take for the modern family to be successful? Statistics paint a fairly gloomy picture for the modern family. We hear stories about divorce, out-of-control teens, infidelity, “broken homes”, and sometimes even physical and emotional abuse. Definitions of a successful family vary, but most sociologists and family therapists agree on a few key fundamentals that differentiate successful families from unsuccessful families. So, how do we define success in a family? This is the definition of a successful family that I’ve come to adopt in my family therapy practice:A successful family promotes a sense of positive family and individual identity, fosters satisfying and fulfilling interactions among all members, and copes with stress in a way that results in more flexibility and cohesiveness in the family.