empty glass jar

Learning to Endure Conflict, Tension & Emptiness

One of the most important things that human beings can learn to do in life is to endure the hard times. This is not always easy because we are always hoping that things will be comfortable, easy or enjoyable. Other times, we just want to have something to keep us busy.  The reality of life is that these things do not always happen. As a result, it is important to think about a few issues as part of learning how to survive. Comfort Seekers We are all comfort seekers in life. We enter life as babies and hope that we can become...
broken egg

How to Repair a Marital Affair

First, remember that legal proceedings don't resolve the emotional issues. It is important to focus on your pain and anger rather than on attacking your spouse. Make sure to leave the children out of the argument; forcing them to be involved or using them to inflict pain on your partner can cause emotional injuries that will follow your children for the rest of their lives!  Forget the temptation to separate immediately, as this will only complicate your options. Avoid making any major decisions during the middle of this crisis! Give yourself time to work on your emotions and the relationship.  This...
Anxiety and depression are a part of our life's journey

How Can I Live the Life I Want To Live While Managing My Anxiety?

Depression, anxiety, and other emotional problems are things that we wish would “just go away.” The frustration in dealing with such problems is that they tend to last longer than we think is appropriate or comfortable. We find that our life goals have had to change as a result of these things. It helps to understand a few key issues in order to live the life you want while managing these problems. Our Wish For a Quick Cure We often expect that in the face of problems we can have a "quick solution". We turn to professionals with the expectation that...
cemetery death

What to do When a Parent Dies

When death happens in a family, it seems to change everything. Everyone must make adjustments, work through their grief and loss, and figure out how to continue on life’s journey in a new and different way. However, when a parent dies, regardless of their age, something very different happens. It is really difficult for anyone to really understand how one can feel at the loss of a parent unless they have gone through it themselves. However, with the death of a parent, whether they are young, middle age, or elderly, the emotions experienced by the family is the same. These emotions...
codependent

Am I Codependent?

Counselors, therapists and psychologists frequently talk about co-dependent relationships as something that is not healthy. Understanding dysfunctional relationships requires that we examine how we approach relating to other people who are important to us. Codpendencey Defined Codependency is best understood as a relationship where you do all the work, suffer all the consequences, the other person does not grow or change, others don’t even notice all you do, or appreciate it, and you end up WORN-OUT, EXHAUSTED, AND POOPED!! – Blamed! Co-dependent relating is one where there is TOO MUCH CARING AND HELPING. Helping others is fine. However, if we try to...
adult pain

The Key Factors That Stop Progress

No one likes to experience pain, injury, limitations, or any chronic problem that interferes with our ability to be fully functional. Many things can stop one from becoming healthy and healing from injury and pain problems. Recovering from any type of chronic health problem requires understanding a number of factors. Fear is a natural response. When we are in the midst of a crisis we tend to "regress" emotionally and feel vulnerable and dependent. Crises, traumas, or any change in the body causes the natural response of feeling overwhelmed, fearful, and highly anxious. Just because it is normal to be fearful and anxious...
children playing tricycle

How Divorce Affects Children

Divorce is difficult for all concerned. The adults are hurt, defensive, confused, frightened, and respond by a desire to for revenge and defensiveness. Children are confused and uncertain about what to do or where they belong. Understanding a few factors is critical to everyone’s continuing healthy development. Children Are Not Adults Children as not little adults who understand things the same as real adults do. Children tend to interpret what is happening to them in terms of their immediate lives. Children have little understanding of the future and tend to live in the present. They tend to hold magical beliefs that influence their thinking and behaviors. They...
Dog Decision Making

What if I Make the Wrong Decision?

We all like feelings of certainty. In fact, this desire is so strong that we often delay making a decision out of a fear of it being the wrong one. While we secretly suspect that we're overanalyzing, we can't shake the feeling that our decision is doomed to failure. The problem is that the more we worry, the less we can effectively make a decision. The real problem is one of absolutes. As the saying goes, there are no absolutes in life; only shades of grey. Another way of stating this is that although the world is fundamentally analog, we prefer...
burnout

Caretaker Burnout, Compassion, and Fatigue

When a member of the family experiences problems, an illness, injury or disability, we tend to forget the impact that any of these problems have on other members of the family. Even short-term crises and problems can drain us as we try to be strong in our efforts to be caring and helpful. Taking care of others with chronic problems requires a lot of energy, love and concern. We all want to do it when problems develop out of love and concern. What we tend to forget is that over time, caretaker burnout can develop leaving the caretaker with a...
Marriage spouse change

How Do I Get My Spouse to Change?

Relationships are important to your health and survival. Many times we enter relationships and notice things in our mates that “we know need to be changed!” The problem is that there is always an element of truth in the situation but changing others is a much more complicated situation than it might seem on the outside. It is always easy to see what others are doing wrong and what they need to change. At times, others do need the help of others to “see the light” and make changes. However, most of the time, others will tend to resist our...