relationship

now browsing by tag

 
 

Love and Addictions!

Could a Person in Active Addiction Love His/Her Partner the Way They Expect and Deserved to Be Loved?

Rodica MihalisRodica Mihalis

Addictions!!! Addictions everywhere, to various drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, sex, various harmful behaviors… just about anything that would product a quick HIGH to only leave the user wanting more, needing more and using/doing more! Addictions plague our lives, some in the open, some hidden under the mountains of lies and pretense.

Addictions run in my family and my husband’s, or to tell the truth, my ex-husband’s, who two years after our separation killed himself. Why? It is hard to tell, because suicide is a complex matter, and the ways depend on each person and not what those around do, or do not do.

When I first met my husband of almost 20 years, I knew he was smoking weed, I suspected he was using other, more potent drugs, but in my innocent mind, believed I was going to CHANGE HIM!!! Stop the addictions because they were bad for him and I was so skilled in showing him the “healthy” path, he would just turn away from addictions and follow my lead to a long, happy life. To put it plainly, I thought I could control the bad… I overestimated the evil…

At the beginning, it worked. One by one, he quit all the damaging substances. Later, I realized that perhaps, at the beginning, the needed “high” was coming from the novelty of the situation, from a new sexual  relationship and a new life that came with it: a home, children the admiration of those who thought he was “hopeless…”

Temporary!!! Yes, it was all temporary!

Unless an addicted person wants himself or herself to CHANGE!!! other people’s efforts are useless!

I don’t mean to “deflate” anyone, but YOU CANNOT CHANGE ANYONE PERMANENTLY!!! A PERSON MUST WANT TO CHANGE HIMSELF OR HERSELF!!! Changing  others is not possible. We only have control over ourselves and our attitude and what we do with our lives.

So… could a person in active addiction or forced to quit LOVE YOU?

My experience? May be in the beginning, when you are the new high, the novelty. But is this love or lust? Is it deep and lasting? Is it trustworthy?

Big scary spiderIn a few years, if the person was forced to quit because of YOU, it may turn to resentment, fear and ultimately lies, when your addicted partner starts hiding from you the fact  that they went back to their first love: the bottle, weed, cocaine, gambling, sexual encounters with no strings attached…  you might not even know! I didn’t. For years I thought his sudden sweats where the result of a  mysterious health condition and our lack of money, the result of a bad economy!  Until one day, when I received a letter from the IRS and I looked through our finances to find tens of checks written to cash… $5,000 each. And that was the day when I was pushed from the top of the tower of blind trust into the dark waters of fear and mistrust! The addictions won over our lives, our children, my love and trust. I was powerless and humbled.

Do they love YOU, the children you conceived together? The answer, as I experienced it, is, may be, but are they able to EXPRESS their love for you, their children? The love for the “addiction” comes FIRST!!!  You and your family compete with the addictions! Everything is done to cover the truth: lies, financial deceit, promises, lies again…

The only path I know of, which leads to a good like, is the person’s own will and decision to change. God gave us FREE WILL and CHOICES and CONSEQUENCES. Each person is only responsible and may only make theirs.

I humbly must admit that no one could “save” or “change” anyone else, unless they want to. A partner may support, encourage and be with someone who, on his/her own wants a change.

Control over others is a myth! Control over our own attitudes, is the truth!

Rodica Mihalis is a Privileged ProvenTherapist, an author, and blogger. Contact her for a counseling appointment.

Tips for Troubled Relationships

Dr. Adam Pearson

Dr. Adam Pearson

Relationships are vital to the human experience. Relationships and the way a person perceives a relationship should be starting at the moment the person is born. The attachment of a child to his/her parent(s) will be a model for relationships with friends, intimate partners, roommates, bosses, etc. Romantic relationships and marriages seem to be the most prevalent among patients seen in online therapy. Communication is one of the most important aspects of a relationship including how we talk to each other, what we say, when we say it, and what we really are trying to say. It seems most people in a troubled relationship believe they know how the other person thinks and act upon these false perceptions. In marriage and family therapy arguing in a troubled relationship becomes a pathological pattern of coping with anger, resentment, hurt, jealousy, and is called the “dance”. Couples argue for the sake of arguing. They bring past mistakes the other person made and use them as a weapon to gain ground or power against their foe. If you do this you are hurting you, the other and the entire relationship.

men are from marsThe key to healthy communication is being humble and honest with one another, forgiving one another and not holding those mistakes against the other person. In an argument timeouts are a very easy and successful avenues of allowing each other to calm down and thinking with logical thought versus thinking with pure emotions. Decisions should NEVER be made when highly emotional, logical thought is minimized and instant gratification is sought when emotions are at their peek. The divorce rate in the United States is around 50% and divorce is proven over and over again to have ill effects on each partner and the children. Living together before marriage has been found to be the number one variable in predicting divorce. Commitment is diminished when a couple goes from living separate to living together and then getting married. The commitment and feeling of being married has been spoiled by living together and the sanctity and fortitude marriage is supposed to bring decreases and makes divorce an easy escape. People are disillusioned and somewhat delusional when they believe living together will help them make a more informed decision about getting married.

In any relationship there are bound to be times when the other person does certain behaviors which negatively have an impact on the relationship. It is not good to “suppress” negative feelings towards someone as they always come out in an uncontrolled and pathological way. There are also times when you will have to decide “Is this worth bringing up or is the problem actually me”. There is nothing wrong with doing a quick “check-in” with the person you are in a relationship with. While it might be uncomfortable to ask “Is there anything I am doing or saying that bothers you?” but for the health of you and your relationship this helps avoid blowups and arguments that severely damage the relationship. Yelling in an argument, name calling, talking down to someone, or demeaning someone all equal different ways of verbal and emotional abuse. Neglecting a partner and putting yourself first is a sure fire way to create problems in the relationship. Loving someone means serving each other and communicating with a balance of grace and justice. It is also important to work together as a team to develop boundaries in your relationship. This helps increase the quality and strength of the relationship when working together towards the same goal. This article is just a snippet to help aid people in their everyday relationships but simple, small things, the way we talk to each other, the validation of each other, a text message, doing something without being asked can make the difference between joy or pain.

———————————————–

It is not too late to save your relationship or marriage… Talk to an online counselor now!

Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, still they make their lives happy on Earth!

652_1381585106_1

Jamal Hassan

Hey! Looking much weird statement isn’t? Ya … I am talking about the wired condition of their brains which stems their behavior pattern and the emotional responses to the issues differently. What males perceive in a situ is entirely different from female point of view. How the relational issues are measured up differently by males and females in some relationship issues illustrates this vital difference. We therapists shall make use of this new found wisdom for the betterment of the apt solution through our sessions differently for them in individual sessions and joint sessions.

The newly found brain mapping and neural networking image analysis brought new insights by Dr. Ragini and her teams at University of Pennsylvania. Her team published the latest findings in the neurological “connectome” mapping and imagery. Though the brain neural network is considered as one there are sub networks too. And they are able to visualize inter hemispheric connectedness and intra-hemispheric connectedness. A simple behavior pattern of a male/female is finally explained as how many neurons are fired in a neural network to change the state like a on/off switch in a digital network and what kind of information process taken place to reach a net result (secretion of some specific brain chemistry at synoptic levels too: the back ground brain chemistry). We can’t get much simpler explanation than this. So to say, receive info; process info; and exhibit (transmit) a particular pattern of behavior unique to that personality. This is what happens in the neural networks. Here I wish to draw the attention to Allport ‘s definition on  personality as “the dynamic organization within the individual of those psycho-physical systems that determine his characteristic behavior and thought.”

men are from marsSo the physical system as such wired and connected in different pattern for males and females attributes the basic male female personality changes unique to them. If any crossover and mixed match is found that is unique to the personality. In general the researcher found that the males have front to back connectivity in the male brain and hemispherical connectivity is high in the female brains. Inter hemispheric connectivity found more in female brain and intra hemispheric connectivity found more in male brain. Above all there is always basic neural front and back and hemispherical connectivity in every human being irrespective of the gender difference. Respectively males’ decision making and behavioral pattern are perceptive and coordinated and that of women are intuitive and analytical. It is about the cerebrum and in cerebellum it is vice versa. Hence the males are stable in motor actions.  Men are single tasking but women are multi tasking in their thinking as well action too. This research proves as it the effect of the basic difference in neural connectivity pattern.  They are complementary to each other too.

This new wisdom shall be used in gender specific mental disorders as well couple counseling to sort out the relationship issues and compatibility issues.  By nature male and female are complementing each other and may the couple complement themselves to make harmony by understanding the rule of the Mother Nature. For more info the readers may contact the researcher Dr. Ragini Verma at Penn State University.

Take Online Counseling for marriage or relationship problems now.

Is Your Relationship Ready for Online Counseling?

Gina Lorenzo

Gina Lorenzo

All couples experience some problems with communication, intimacy, beliefs, personality-conflicts, etc. at one time or another. Are the differences strong enough to create chaos or even the inability to co-exist? There are a few ways to assess whether your relationship needs and is ready for on-line counseling. The underlying initial question is Do I want to continue the relationship?

1. Do both partners agree that the relationship is worth saving?

If one partner has made up their mind to leave the relationship then long term therapy is not the answer although a session with a therapist to close the relationship is worth the investment. If each person wants to continue the relationship then therapy is for you.

2. If each person can admit that the issues in the relationship have not been solvable together, then a third party needs to help.

Arguing, tuning out or just existing in the same house are no way to live together. If the communication problems won’t go away or if the same argument repeats itself then a counselor will help to mend the issues.

3. Can you embrace the fact that accepting a therapist’s help isn’t a sign of weakness but a positive step forward?

Friends and family are a great resource- a good outlet if you need to share problems but they will always give subjective advice no matter what their intentions are. Often times they will be surprised and perhaps judge why you would seek a professional. Keep in mind that their judgments may have deep personal roots and that you are making a positive step. Your decision will only result in a happier partnership.

4. Do you each agree that you are responsible for the problems?

Relationships are a partnership. Placing all blame on the other is counterproductive. Even if a specific event or personality trait is what is leading you to therapy, both participants will need to explore their feelings, behavior, and reaction.

5. Are your expectations for the therapist positive and realistic?

While the therapist will help guide you, explore the origins of your behavior and feelings and give suggestions for better communication, child-rearing, intimacy, etc. it is you that needs to complete the ‘homework’ and take ownership. The therapist cannot ‘fix’ you or your relationship without your participation.

6. Are your expectations for change in the relationship realistic?

Are you ready to accept and adopt changes in behavior? Are you ready to change while (and not wait for) your partner also takes steps forward? Tell your partner that you are willing and hoping to do this for the relationship and agree that this will not be an overnight process.
The advantage to on-line counseling is that you can speak or email a counselor when the time is convenient and complete homework and experience change in a timely way.

Congratulations and enjoy the positive process.

Contact Gina

Take Online Family Therapy or Relationship Counseling for marriage and relationship problems now.

Divorce Elevates Risk for Depression

Divorce is associated with an increased risk of future depressive episodes but only for those who already have a history of depression, according to a new study published in Clinical Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.

marriage and relationship problems“Stressful life events like divorce are associated with significant risk for prolonged emotional distress, including clinically-significant depression,” notes psychological scientist and lead researcher David Sbarra of the University of Arizona. “At the same time, we know from considerable research that the experience of divorce is non-random. Some people are much greater risk for experiencing a divorce than other people.”

This led Sbarra and colleagues to wonder: Is it divorce, or the factors leading to divorce — such as marital discord, neuroticism, or hostility — that increase the risk for depression?

To investigate this question, the researchers took advantage of data from the longitudinal, nationally representative Midlife Development in the United States (MIDUS) study. The researchers matched each participant who had separated or divorced during the study to a continuously married person in the study who had the same propensity to divorce, based on a number of previously identified factors. By comparing participants to their match, the researchers were able to account for the fact that it’s impossible to randomly assign people to divorce or stay married.

In line with previous research, the results showed that divorce had a significant effect on subsequent depression.

But, as Sbarra and colleagues found, the full story was a bit more complex.

Specifically, divorce or separation only increased the likelihood of a later depressive episode for those participants who reported a history of depression. In fact, nearly 60% of adults with a history of depression who divorced during the study experienced a depressive episode at the follow-up assessment.

For all other participants — including those who had a history of depression but hadn’t divorced, and those who divorced but had no history of depression — there was no elevated risk for a future depressive episode. Only about 10% of these people experienced a depressive episode at follow-up.

The magnitude of the difference between the two groups — 60% versus 10% — surprised the researchers.

“These findings are very important because they affirm the basic notion that most people are resilient in the face of divorce and that we do not see severe disorder among people without a history of a past depressive illness,” says Sbarra. “If you’ve never experienced a significant depression in your life and you experience a separation or divorce, your odds for becoming depressed in the future are not that large at all.”

Article continues here…

“Release Yourself from Grief and Addiction,” Jeffrey is a ProvenTherapist!

Jeffrey Perkins is a licensed Counselor in child abuse recognition, licensed in Special Education and also the publisher of “Breaking Down Communication Barriers of Children with Autism.” He is a new member of the approved ProvenTherapists team.

Jeffrey Perkins

PRLog (Press Release) – Oct. 25, 2013 – SUFFOLK, Va. — Jeffrey has been practicing mental and behavioral health, intensive in-home, grief and addiction counseling to children, adolescents and adults alike throughout his career. He has counseled middle and high school teenagers for over 20 years as well as providing educating families on parenting skills which has vastly improved their relationships with their children. Jeffrey has taught as a licensed special education teacher for over 20 years and has provided grief and addiction counseling for approximately 10 years.

Jeffrey’s Expert Service

Jeffrey is a team oriented counselor with a great deal of compassion. He realizes that it takes a team effort (counselor as well as the individual or families being served) in order to make counseling or therapy excel and reach those individuals as it should. He is very empathetic to the client and makes a point to “place himself in their shoes” in order to get the full effect of what the client is facing and the journey that he or she has traveled along the way. Jeffrey strongly believes that listening is the first and most important element in dealing with a person’s grief or addiction and that it lays the foundation for the counseling structure that is being built between the therapist and the client. Jeffrey states “Many barriers can be eliminated simply by listening and building trust with your client.” He believes that social media and the services being provided by https://www.proventherapy.com serve as a springboard to those who are in need of counseling and simply don’t know of any other options available to them.

Read full story here…

Why Counseling Takes Time? An Article by Prof. Fatic

Prof FaticProf. Fatic talks about the modern philosophical term ‘polylog’ and the implications of client-counselor relationship and dynamics. What to expect from a counseling session and why is it taking longer than anticipated? “Those who prefer to maintain a distance will be much less able to help the clients change their ways of seeing the world and reacting to it,” says Prof. Fatic. Getting through to the client is not a straight forward business, but a real challenge to any Therapist. Client-Therapist relationship is very important and highly significant. In his own words, “The relationship between the client and the counselor is the foundation of the client’s emancipation and progress in addressing the issues.”

Read the full article here…

Talking To Your Children

Linda Harris

Approved ProvenTherapist

 

Linda Harris - Approved ProvenTherapist It’s everywhere. Talk about financial struggles is on the internet, the television, in the newspapers, between parents, and amongst students in high schools. It is almost impossible to be unaware of the rising price of gas, food, and of foreclosures. Children are very sensitive to stress in a household and when they are left out of what is happening, they create their own stories which may be more traumatizing than the reality of the family’s difficulties.

Contact Linda for Counseling and Parenting Support

The question is not if, but what is the best way to talk to your children about challenging financial times. What do you say that is age appropriate. Before having this conversation, make it a priority to put your own house in order. If you do not have a financial plan, follow the adage, “better late than never”. Helping a child feel secure is extraordinarily difficult if you do not manage your own emotions. Guilt and self-doubt may arise from feeling that something more could have been done to prevent this financial challenge.Take responsibility for your part of the problem, but recognize what is not under your control. Go for walks, connect with the beauty of nature, and stay in the present. These tools will make it easier to calm yourself. After settling on a plan, think carefully about what to say. Children do not need to know specifics unless they ask, but they need to hear that the situation is temporary, and that you are working on a resolution. Moreover, since children often blame themselves, explain that it is not their fault.

Listen empathically. without judgment. Give your children the opportunity to express their thoughts, feelings, and fears, then carefully look for signs of distress. Are they experiencing sleeping or eating problems, or isolating themselves? If so, talk to them, and when necessary seek help from their pediatrician or a counselor.

Discuss the new priorities that you are instituting, helping children discern the difference between needs and wants. If they feel embarrassed about moving to an apartment from a house, or not having new clothes, convey your understanding about how difficult it is to make these changes. Emphasize the importance of working as a family to devise a plan as to how everyone can contribute to solve family problems. Explain how much money in the budget is allocated for each expenditure. When children feel that they are a part of the common good and understand what is going on, they feel less powerless and more in control.

Make the best of the challenges by turning adversity into an adventure. Create a list of fun, free activities such as planning a picnic, going for a hike, playing games in the evening, or making gifts.

Have age appropriate conversations. For children ages six and under, focus on reassuring them that they are safe and secure and are part of a team. Use simple language and be truthful. Answer questions that are asked. Children between six and twelve can raise money, such as having a garage sale. Help them figure out how they can help others, perhaps by donating clothes or toys. Children between 13 and 17 are more aware and are having financial discussions themselves. They need reassurance, but can do more to contribute to the family finances, maybe with a part time job. Teach them how to budget, so they can make changes to support the family’s needs.

Finally, a crises is an opportunity to look within oneself. Adults and children alike may discover new strengths. Challenges also offer a chance to recognize the importance of being a part of a community. Though hard times can be divisive, we as individuals and as a community can choose to become stronger by the act of giving and receiving, thus realizing that we are not alone.

MARRIAGE – Happy despite the challenges

Sharanya Dinesh

Approved ProvenTherapist

Sharanya Dinesh - ProvenTherapist I am an ardent fan of Khalil Gibran; a poet, philosopher, visionary, saint ….I run out of eulogies when I need to describe this one person. This page is dedicated to him, in the sense I will be writing his poems and try to understand them with you all. Each of us sees the same thing with a unique individual perception. Help understand this great prophet better…

Contact Sharanya for Marriage and Relationship Counseling

He writes:

Aye, you shall be together even in the silent memory of God. But, let there be spaces in togetherness.
Love one another but make not a bond of love
Let your love be a moving sea between the shores of your souls. Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf. Sing and dance together and be joyous,
But let each one of you be alone,
Even as the strings of lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.
Give your heart but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
Stand together yet not too near together.
For the pillars of the temple stand apart, and the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.

Beautiful, is it not? A few lines to aptly describe the way a couple can live together happily! A marriage is not about merging with each other! How can two different people merge? It would mean a loss of identity for the partner who is making all the changes or accommodating more. This only results in bitterness and shows its ugly face at the most unexpected stage of married life.

Can an oak tree and the cypress tree be called oak tree? We need to walk hand in hand towards the same goal. Like the train tracks, each one independent yet dependent and very imperative for the smooth running of the train. The train carries so many people every day to their respective destinations and achieves its own milestones because of these two tracks on which it confidently chugs away. When the tracks need to meet and change the direction of the train they do meet and again mutually stay together at a little distance.

Couples too need to retain their individuality, take decisions together and let life stay on course with the partners holding hands and walking in forward n the same direction. Give your love to your spouse but safe guard your heart. That is for the creator! We humans forget this truth. We shower everything on each other. And breathe down each other’s neck! Too much proximity brings in claustrophobia. We are meant for each other and God brought us together for some purpose. Our individual goals and our destiny together are as designed by God. We forget the creator, the purpose of our lives and ourselves too. We begin trying to merge; with unmet expectations end up on different shores with a sea of misunderstandings between us.

He says that we all need time to introspect, be alone and ponder about ourselves. The pillars of the temple stand apart and are home to the God inside and to the thousands of devotees praying to the Lord. The couples should support each other, help each other and learn from each other. The Oak tree and Cyprus tree do not grow in each other’s shadow.