Bad Relationships on Repeat? Break Your Unhealthy Patterns

Criticism.  Sarcasm.  Disrespect.  Repeat. These are just some of the relationship behaviors that some when reoccurring can leave you wondering, “How did I get here again?”  The relationship may have even started great, you thought he/she was incredible, a nice person, a good match.  But when red flags started to wave you either ignored them

Combat Loneliness by Learning to Connect

We humans have an innate, deep need for connection with each other. It can feel great when we connect but if not, it can lead to loneliness.  Inauthenticity and emotional availability are just a few of the ways people behave that can reflect their challenges in this area.  The reality is it can be hard to

How to Be More Emotionally Available, and Why

Being emotionally available is the cornerstone of healthy relationships.  It allows for openness, communication, intimacy and depth.  Then why is being emotionally unavailable such a common problem for people?  Because it’s also self-protective and there are many reasons why people feel they need to keep the kind of distance it helps to maintain.  It can

The Often-Overlooked Glue of Long-Term Relationships

Most people know what it feels like in the beginning of a relationship when both of your brains are busy bringing you together, as in the “honeymoon phase.”  Romantic love produces high levels of dopamine, creating euphoric feelings and the resulting behaviors for each other.  You are at the beginning of building emotional safety ,

Sexless Relationships and the Layered Cake Metaphor

Alysha Jeney, LMFT, looks at a lack of sex in relationships, the layered cake metaphor and what sex positivity looks like.  A lack of sex in relationships can vary from trust issues to health related dysfunction. Sometimes circumstances such as having a new baby or struggling with infertility can throw everything off.  Or maybe you

When a Husband’s Desire for His Wife To Be Happy Gets Tricky

Richard Nicastro, PhD, through the eyes of “Nina,” explores what it can look like when protective love turns into hopeless frustration.   — If you’re a woman in a committed relationship, I’d like you to think about how your husband/partner reacts to you when you’re vulnerable — do your vulnerabilities bring out the best in him?

Be Humble. Don’t Despair.

These are unprecedented times and we as a nation are being pulled tightly.  Tensions is exceedingly high as we wait for word on who will be the U.S. President.  For months I’ve witnessed and engaged in difficult conversations fueled by primal feelings on both sides.  Anger, rage, fear, passion and righteousness have saturated communities across

Codependency is an Attachment Issue

Aude Castagna, MFT explores the reasons people can be compulsive pleasers and caretakers, even in the face of toxic behaviors and to their own detriment.  She offers some guidance around how to start the process of change.   We start Life as helpless infants totally dependent on our caregivers, and we are hardwired to forgo their

Roadblocks to Forgiveness in Relationships

Richard Nicastro, Phd, takes a closer look at some of the obstacles to forgiveness in intimate relationships.   Imagine this scenario: Your spouse/partner has wounded you in some way. S/he has now expressed what feels like genuine remorse to you. Maybe you’ve even said you accept the apology you were offered, but now you’re wondering whether

Lessons from Writing Letters to Strangers

Elise Hu, NPR correspondent and Millennial (the “loneliest generation”), shares her need for connection during the global pandemic.  In her worry and loneliness she wrote letters to 50 strangers across America.  A week into California’s stay-at-home order, when our now-familiar mix of anxious, lonely and restless feelings were still brand new, I craved connection. But