Teenagers are known for taking risks. Developmental psychologists have even termed a certain level of risk in adolescence “normative,” meaning that a certain range of risks are to be expected. We usually think of those risks in terms of more dangerous physical behavior, but teens take relational risks too. They differentiate from their families of origin and assert themselves as “different” from those who have raised them in their beliefs, appearances, hobbies, and interests. They have more room to explore their identity and practice ways to be close to others. Teenagers tend to be boldly themselves and strongly align with… Continue Reading This Article
Is Your Anxiety Communicating to You?
Anxiety. It is a commonly used word to describe an array of physical sensations, emotional responses, and thought patterns. While we use the same word to describe expected worry and uncertainty about an upcoming work presentation, we also use it to describe clinical levels of emotional, cognitive, and physical distress that disrupt everyday life. The emotional and physical ramifications of anxiety can be very unpleasant and painful, and it is understandable that we often have a desire to get rid of it as quickly as possible. However, we must also recognize that there are times when low to moderate levels… Continue Reading This Article
Why Do Couples Fight?
Remember when you first met your partner and you could not get enough of each other? Those were the days! After the newly-in-love-bliss wears off and we begin to see the flaws of the person we chose to be in a relationship with, problems can arise. Years into a relationship those “cute quirks” suddenly become “annoying habits” and a source of more regular conflict. John and Julie Gottman have suggested that many of the arguments that couples engage in are perpetual. This means couples often fight about the same thing over and over again. Many couples recognize this pattern and point… Continue Reading This Article
Relationship Strain in the Midst of Pregnancy Loss and Fertility Treatments
Losing a baby can throw you into deep, agonizing grief. Whether you are grieving after a pregnancy loss (such as miscarriage or stillbirth), or grieving the “way things were supposed to be” through the many losses associated with fertility challenges, the relational impact can be deep. As an individual, it may throw you into an array of emotions including anger, sadness, and fear. You may feel completely alone, even if you are in a close relationship. The challenges this can bring up with your partner can be difficult to navigate. For example, you may want to talk, but your partner… Continue Reading This Article
Uncertainty and Growth
“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.” -Rainer Maria Rilke This quote by Rilke is one of my absolute favorites. As a therapist, I love the message… Continue Reading This Article
The hard (but important) work of therapy!
Nearly everyone who begins therapy does so to bring about change. Sometimes people desire more happiness or less pain. Deeper relationships. More boundaries. Less anxiety. Resolution after loss. More life satisfaction. Increased peace of mind. Better sleep. Comfort in social settings. Body confidence. When we are in the depths of pain, we all want to feel better and we want it to happen fast. By engaging in therapy you are taking another step toward growth and change. You are reaching out to someone who has experience to help you on your trajectory toward the healthiest version of yourself. Most people… Continue Reading This Article
Take Good Care
Sometimes we get so busy, we forget to take good care of ourselves and our basic needs. We must remember that our mind and body need to be well-maintained to function at their optimum level. Consider all the ways you take care of your car to keep it up and running. Here are a few tips for taking good care of yourself. I encourage you to keep these in place, especially when facing stress. 1) Get good sleep. Try to set a fairly consistent bed time followed by a regular wake time. Give yourself plenty of time for good rest,… Continue Reading This Article
Can We Be Happy and Sad at the Same Time?
We regularly experience a dance of mixed emotions. Life is full of ups and downs, but on occasion there are downs in the ups! Emotions can be complex and sometimes cutoff from immediate awareness. One emotion may overwhelm others, and so we identify with the strongest. Emotions can be confusing, complicated, and seemingly out of line with our experience. It is relieving when our feelings can be easily connected to the external experience. For example, when we lose a loved one, we expect to feel grief and sadness. When we get accolades from a boss, we anticipate pride and happiness…. Continue Reading This Article
Communicating with Your Partner About The Infertility Journey
Journeying through infertility, miscarriage, stillbirth, and other pregnancy related losses usually brings about pain, grief, anger, confusion, and an array of emotions. It can sometimes feel isolating, even leading to distance and misunderstanding in a relationship. Perhaps one partner wants to talk about their experience of grief, while the other prefers to grieve in silence. Or one partner may desire to share personal information about the infertility journey with supportive friends and family, while the other partner finds sharing unhelpful and even hurtful. Open communication is vital between partners, although it can sometimes be difficult to know how to start…. Continue Reading This Article
April is National Infertility Awareness Month!
April is National Infertility Awareness Month, which is a month geared at bringing awareness, information, and support to the infertility and pregnancy loss community. Part of my hope with this blog is to bring voice to the often unspoken loss of infertility and pregnancy loss. This month is a great time to reach out to friends, family, and loved ones for support or to share your story. In the midst of this month is Resolve’s National Infertility Awareness Week (April 21-27, 2013). This week is rapidly approaching, and for more information about how to get involved you can follow this link… Continue Reading This Article