Don’t Play the Problem’s Game

When Problems Take Over a Relationship How does a persistent problem get started and what keeps it going? Why does it seem to be immune to your attempts to defeat it? Let me explain how it gets so hard and how problems manipulate you into feeding them. Continue reading →

Feed the Person, Starve the Problem

One Halloween when I was a kid, I came home from trick-or-treating with a plastic pumpkin full of chocolate. My mouth had been watering ever since the second doorbell, but my costume prohibited taking an early snack. As soon as I got home, the mask came off, and I had my first piece of chocolate.Continue reading “Feed the Person, Starve the Problem”

When Problems Take Over a Relationship

Even when people are firing on all cylinders, relationships can be tricky. When there’s a persistent problem, like an illness or an addiction in the mix, they can be impossible. Persistent problems can be the source of much harm. The alcoholic you can’t rely on. The gambler you can’t trust with money. The depressive whoContinue reading “When Problems Take Over a Relationship”

Detect Dreams

When you’re stuck at an impasse. You find yourself gridlocked. You want children; she doesn’t. He wants you to go to church, but you’re an atheist. She likes to stay home; you’re always ready to party. There doesn’t seem to be any solution. There’s no way to compromise. You’re ready to call it quits. WhatContinue reading “Detect Dreams”

Don’t Force It

Especially when trying to bring about change My father was a car mechanic. When I was a kid, he tried to teach me all about cars, but I wasn’t very interested. After a while, he might have thought he was wasting his time, but one of his lessons stuck with me. I think about itContinue reading “Don’t Force It”

The Shrink’s Links: Constructive Conflict

Bringing you the best of mental health every week. My book, Constructive Conflict, has just been published in print and in Kindle. Conflict in relationships is inevitable. If you haven’t had a conflict yet, you haven’t been paying attention. Communication increases conflict. If you haven’t had a conflict yet, you haven’t really been talking. ConflictContinue reading “The Shrink’s Links: Constructive Conflict”