We often hear of the challenges that single parents have, but another group sometimes get overlooked: solo parents are those who are not divorced or widowed but carry a very large portion of the family load because their spouse is often away. Whether it’s due to military service, religious commitments, or irregular work hours, many parents (women in particular) find themselves shouldering the bulk of the home and family responsibilities. Here are some strategies to cope as a solo parent:
Marriage is a wonderful change, but it certainly brings some challenges, not just for the couple involved, but also for the in-law relationship dynamic. Here are my top 3 tips for daughter-in-laws and mother-in-laws:
Emotional Intelligence (EI) is the ability to recognize emotion and to use it to improve your life and your relationships. It is truly one of the most important skills you can develop as a human being, and yet it’s not something we seem to talk about very often. Here are some ways to work to achieve Emotional Intelligence in your marriage.
One of the biggest problems in marriage is poor communication. There’s so much emotional history and baggage, and both people have thoughts, feelings, and need that can cloud the situation, so it’s easy to miss each other. It’s important to understand three distinct communication styles and how they can hinder or help our ability to connect with each other.
I had the opportunity to share my thoughts on a recent episode of the “Mormon Matters” podcast; I joined other LDS therapists to talk about ways that we can ensure ourselves and our families are protected in ecclesiastical situations. With the #MeToo movement and other instances of high-profiled men abusing their position of power to take advantage of vulnerable people, it’s time we take a look at the dynamics of how all of this applies to Mormonism. The purpose of our discussion was not to instill paranoia or fear that dominates our thoughts, but instead to empower Mormon families to be smart and safe in how they approach ecclesiastical settings.
In the fallout of the news that former White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter was physically violent to both his ex-wives, some have begun to question the wisdom of LDS Bishops counseling women in abusive relationships (reports indicate both women were encouraged to stay with their husbands). Working with women in private practice, I’ve heard of this kind of thing happening. It’s embarrassing, it’s infuriating, and it’s my hope that this cultural moment of awareness and the #MeToo movement can spark social change. I shared some of my thoughts on this subject with KUER news.
If you are a woman, you’ve likely had insecurities about how you look. The topic of women’s issues with body image and their appearance is one that’s been studied by therapists for years. Whether it’s eating disorders, media messaging, puberty, or weight loss, there’s a lot to discuss and think about when it comes to how women and girls think about themselves. What’s more is that Pew Research indicates that even today, women are still valued more for their looks than for their minds. Clearly, we have some work to do. Read more
If you have any kind of close relationship, you’ve almost certainly experienced needing to have a tough conversation. Maybe it’s about children, in-laws, unmet expectations, but when concerns arise (and they do), you need to talk about it. But when emotions are high and there’s a lot at stake, things can quickly get derailed. Inspired by my research, personal experiences, and my years as a clinician, I’ve developed an acronym that can be used as a tool to navigate these difficult discussions. It’s called “OSCAR.”
Divorces are traumatic, painful, and messy; there are so many raw emotions to work through, but if children are involved, the most important priority for two adults is to work to make sure that their kids are well taken care of. Here are four tips to successfully co-parent following a divorce:
The #MeToo hashtag (and the subsequent exposing of many high-profile figures as sexual predators) has given us as a society a lot to grapple with. From a Latter-day Saint perspective, some are questioning how appropriate it is for bishops to be talking about sexual matters with young people (particularly girls). I recently sat down with former LDS bishop Richard Ostler to talk about these critical issues for the Mormon Land Podcast. Here are some highlights from our discussion: