February is all about L-O-V-E. We all know the excitement of falling in love, of being completely and totally enamored with someone else. Who doesn’t love roses, chocolates, and candlelit dinners for two? But the truth is that when February is done, when the honeymoon phase of a relationship is over, real love is a lot of work. It can be challenging, painful even, but it can ultimately help us learn and mature, both individually and together. Here are a few ways that love is a growth process:
Most all of us have experienced drama at one time or another. Maybe it’s with a gossipy co-worker, an overbearing family member, or a nosy friend. But how do you know if you yourself are the one being overly dramatic? Self-awareness is key, but the problem is that most people who really struggle with this are entirely oblivious to the fact. Here are some questions to ask yourself to determine whether or not you’re a drama queen (as well as some tips to help you not let drama get the better of you):
1. Do I lash out with others when I’m not included?
In my clinical practice, I’ve often seen this manifest in relationships with in-laws. For example, a woman I worked with was upset when her mother-in-law had a fun outing with others in the family but didn’t include her. If this kind of situation happens to you, how would you handle it? Some might take extreme offense, harbor great resentment, become overly dramatic, and lash out. Others may stay silent and conceal that it was painful to be excluded. But I challenge my readers to assume positive intent and then simply ask for what you want. It’s okay to say something like, “That was probably a fun thing you all did. It hurt me a little to not be invited. I’d love to be included next time around.”
–> Avoid the drama by being direct and assertive and not lashing out or gossiping.
You hear about kids walking in on their parents in the bedroom, but how do you handle it when you get caught by your in-laws? I have never been interviewed on this topic before…
In light of Robin Williams recent suicide, I wanted to share a colleague’s anonymous story of her own battle with depression and suicidality.
There are two things I’d like you to know about me. The first is that I’m a therapist, a clinical social worker with well over a decade of experience. I run a successful private practice and am very happily married with three children. The second is that for many years in my early twenties, I suffered from severe, treatment-resistant depression.
Have you ever been annoyed by certain habits or quirks of your partner that you once found endearing? Perhaps you were drawn to a man because you admired his work ethic, but then later came to see him as a workaholic. Or maybe you initially liked how a woman was dedicated to physical fitness, but eventually felt she was self-absorbed. This phenomenon, which experts refer to as a fatal attraction, can wreak havoc on relationships.
I had the opportunity to give my insight on this topic in a new Wall Street Journal article out today entitled, “How to Cope When You and Your Partner are Falling Out of Love.” Other relationship experts and I discuss how to appropriately handle this fatal attraction in such ways as recognizing that every character trait has pros and cons, reflecting on what you do appreciate about your romantic partner, and considering how the other person brings balance to the relationship.
Click here to read the article in full.
Here is the most recent “5 Minute Relationship Fix” segment from the Todd & Erin Show, where I share quick tips to strengthen relationships in just five minutes!
This week, we’re tackling a topic that comes up over and over again: the “S” word. Yep, that’s right, we’re talking about sex!
Ok, ok. I know some of you will give me flack about this. You’ve heard me speak, write, and blog on the importance of setting healthy boundaries, saying “no”, and not over-commiting ourselves, right? Well, sometimes you’ve just got to break your own rules! Like when one of the top websites top websites in the US and globally offers you a paying gig as their Relationship Expert!
I didn’t say yes immediately. I wanted to do my homework and make sure that it was worth my time and energy. It was. And I said YES!
Julie shares tips for limiting children’s technology use
Jane: “I’ve been married 4 years and we agreed husband would finish his education while I worked to support us. He hasn’t made progress toward degree. I’m getting angry. What can I do?”