True intimacy is achieved when you feel safe enough to be emotionally naked with your partner. You know your partner will not try to talk you out of your authentic feelings, will not say you’re “over-reacting”, will not try to fix it, and will not ignore you. You know you will be supported and validated no matter what you’re feeling and sharing, verbally or otherwise. You know you will receive empathy.This is love, pure and simple…
Archive for the ‘psychology’ Category
“Everywhere I go I find a poet has been there before me.” Sigmund Freud
“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you have imagined.” Henry David Thoreau
I struggle with this one since so often I have to cancel people out because I’m flaring. I advise them that I have a chronic medical condition which unfortunately knocks me out. But I think it also sends the message to patients that my needs are more important than theirs. People are really great about it, but it bothers me that I cannot offer the consistency and dependability people need when they go to therapy.
For example, I was flaring last week and told people I’d be calling them today, Sunday, to hopefully reschedule tomorrow. Well as it turns out I now have a cold and still need to stay at home. It sounds so…flaky… and the STRESS of the uncertainty only makes me feel worse . One thing about lupus is you need to really baby your body when anything comes on because your immune system cannot defend the body against invading viruses, bacteria, etc.
Therapists are trained to only self disclose for the benefit of the patient. I’m thinking that if they knew exactly what the medical condition is, they would understand why I have to frequently cancel and the uncertainty of when I can reschedule. But I’m not sure if I’m considering telling them for my benefit, so they won’t think badly of me, or theirs, so they won’t feel blown off and therefore feel badly about themselves. And then I’m afraid that if they understand the seriousness of my condition, it might scare them off…
So I’d really appreciate your input on this, especially if you’ve ever been a therapy patient. Would you want to know its lupus? How do you think this would make you feel? How might you respond? Or is that way too much information? Do you think the “chronic medical condition” is enough of an explanation?
Thanks for any help you can offer me here.
Image from www.globalcollage.com
“Life isn’t about how to survive the storm, but how to dance in the rain.” Author unknown.
OBAMA AND HIS MOTHER
There has been so much joy in this country to see a black man finally elected to the presidency. And I share that joy…I never thought I would see such progress in our society in my lifetime… all the talk about unity and one people in this country as represented by Obama. The only thing is, the fact that he’s half white is pretty much ignored, as I see it. Why???? Wouldn’t it be even MORE unifying to acknowledge the mix of BOTH races in our president elect???
I know from my studies that people of mixed race tend to identify with the minority half. I don’t know why. I just know its so. And I don’t get that. It seems like a disowning of half of who you are. Kind of a reverse racism of your own identity.
Talk to me somebody…Help me understand this….
An elderly Cherokee was teaching his grandchildren about life.
He said to them, “A fight is going on inside me, it is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves.” One wolf is evil………..he is fear, anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, competition, superiority, and ego.
The other is good……… he is joy, peace, love, hope, sharing, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, friendship, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith. This same fight is going on inside you, and inside every other person, too.”
They thought about it for a minute and then one child asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?”
The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”
I just read the psychology news brief in my sidebar: Chinese Issue First Definition of Internet Addiction. “Symptoms of addiction included yearning to get back online, mental or physical distress, irritation and difficulty concentrating or sleeping. The definition, based on a study of more than 1,300 problematic computer users, classifies as addicts those who spend at least six hours online a day and have shown at least one symptom in the past three months.”
Who? Me? Do nights count? Well….I’ve never counted how many hours a day I spend online. But its a lot. I blog, read others’ blogs, go online for news, weather, telephone numbers, to shop, bid on my ebay beads, and find out lots of other information or research that interests me. I also email lots of friends, and belong to various professional listservs that I read to stay current in my field. The internet has replaced magazines as a source of leisure reading, and most of the major newspapers are now online.
I definitely get irritated when I can’t get at my computer when I want to, and I sometimes yearn to get back to it when I’m in a boring social situation. I doubt its 6 hours a day, but maybe I’m in denial. Maybe my family will shock me with a group intervention. Though I don’t know where they’d find time since they’re all online too…
What amazes me about this news article is that they were able to tear the people away from their computers and into psychiatric units. Unless…ew…they were taken involuntarily?
What do you think of this definition? And where do you fall according to these guidelines?
He reports that Amity Pierce Buxton, founder of The Straight Spouse Network, estimates that as many as two million straight spouses will, often suddenly, traumatically, and by accident, find themselves discovering that they have a gay or bi spouse. The article also reports that Joe Kort, an Imago therapist specializing in gay issues, has seen couples negotiate arrangements other than splitting. Some agreed upon solutions have been allowing one or both parters to have relationships outside the marriage, allowing the bi/ gay partner to use porn and webcams but not meet sexual partners face to face, or the bi/gay partner agrees not to indulge in outside sexual behaviors or porn.
What a tough and painful situation for everyone involved…particularly where there are children…or the spouses still love each other… What would you do?
A couple I’m working with blew me away with a DVD they have of a pediatrician who teaches mirroring to young parents. Mirroring is literally just that, imitating the communication of the child so that he or she feels you’re speaking their language. The toddler then feels understood, and cooperative. He is Dr. Harvey Karp – the DVD is The Happiest Toddler on the Block.
Among other things he teaches mirroring of facial expressions, body language and sounds. His basic tenet is don’t talk to toddlers like they’re little adults because they’re not; their language skills are far more primal. You have to literally get down to their level. He also has another one, The Happiest Baby on the Block which I have not yet reviewed.
The results looked startlingly effective to ward off and/or stop tantrums. His website is www.thehappiestbaby.com. I can tell you one thing for sure. When my kids present me with grandchildren, this will be one of the first gifts I give them.
Here he is in action:
Here is a present for you:
Focus solely on the present below, thinking of nothing else but the image of that present…the colors….the shapes…focus for as long as you can…and then, when you’re ready, open the present and see what you find…
In doing this exercise you are already practicing being present…experiencing peace and release from worries about tomorrow.
What did you find when you opened your present?
Copyright Jupiter Images 2008
“Look not back in anger nor ahead in fear, but think of now with awareness.” Author Unknown
I chose this quote for my high school yearbook. I have no idea how it surfaced through the years to my conscious memory, but wow! That 18 year old girl must have had some precognition that the quoted lesson would be one I so needed to eventually learn (and teach my future clients).
And learning it I am. Even more aware of the beauty of nature than I’ve been all my life (if thats posssible),seeing it, smelling it, feeling it on my skin, melding with it, morphing with it, feeling it in every inch of my body and soul. Its a beautiful autumn here in the northeast…
How long are YOU able to stay in the present moment? Have you thought about that? Have you thought about the fact that when you are TRULY in the present moment you can’t worry or feel anxious because that’s about the future? Are you letting the simple joys of the present moment slip away into tomorrows that may never come?
What are your favorite ways of staying present? Staying in the present is a present you give to yourself.
This was a book that was very popular a long time ago, all about female identity and breaking free of culturally imposed “shoulds and should nots” and living from, and for, our souls. Its written by a Jungian therapist. For some reason I just could never get into the written version, try as I might. Now, years later, I’m doing audio books as I commute to work and I’m listening to her narrate the book.
Its wonderful!!!! She talks about myth and fairy tales and what they really say about women and it is just so thought provoking and inspiring. Her voice is enchanting and I can’t recommend it enough.
Enjoy your day!
An article in Science Daily reports that Swedish researchers have found some physical attributes of the homosexual brain to resemble those found in the opposite sex.
The brains of heterosexual men and homosexual women are slightly asymmetric—the right hemisphere is larger than the left—and the brains of gay men and straight women are not.
In connectivity of the amygdala (which is important for emotional learning), lesbians resemble straight men, and gay men resemble straight women.
So…….maybe moral choice regarding this issue, with all the negative moral judgements attached to it, really does come down to natural, biological chance. And doesn’t everyone deserve a chance to be who they were created to be?
Too often, as adults, we forget to say three little words that mean so much to our partners. No, not the obvious ones.
I mean “I’m proud of you.” For some reason, we forget to say that, almost as if its a given to our partner. It isn’t. Trust me. Try saying it. Please be sure you have a particular example in mind because its absolutely certain he or she will ask, “Why???”.
Then when you say it, watch the subtle change of facial expression. You will see that you have given a powerfully tender gift to the person you love.
I just found this artifact of life before computers on www.stressrelatedillness.com.. Makes a good lead in for what I’ve got for you today: an interesting, tongue in cheek essay that you might enjoy too, in todays’ New York Times Magazine. I guess this means I’m emerging from my murderous funk:
That question came up as one of my search inquiries today, and I thought was a good one. There is the issue of violation of boundaries vs. a partner’s right to know. Obviously one who searches cells and emails etc. already doesn’t trust the partner, but there are also other ways of handling it. That being said, spoken like true therapist, I must admit that as a human being, if I thought my Alph was (were????) straying I don’t know if I’d be able to take the high road and process in a healthy manner.
Are you addicted? Here is a link to a self assessment.
It does give one pause for thought….
“We are bound by our fate only as long as we accept the values that determine it.” Helen Deutsch
Artist: Dante Gabriel Rosetti
I hate when I hear clients or professionals talking about having to “work at” a sexual relationship. That sounds about as exciting as cleaning the bathroom. Maintaining (or resurrecting) the sexual chemistry in a relationship is an art. Repeat: art. Its about flirting and seduction.
I ask you, does this lovely lady look like she’s working?