Archive for November, 2012

The Double Standard of Forced Treatment

Monday, November 26th, 2012

The Double Standard of Forced TreatmentForced treatment for people with mental illness has had a long and abusive history, both here in the United States and throughout the world. No other medical specialty has the rights psychiatry and psychology do to take away a person’s freedom in order to help “treat” that person.

Historically, the profession has suffered from abusing this right — so much so that reform laws in the 1970s and 1980s took the profession’s right away from them to confine people against their will. Such forced treatment now requires a judge’s signature.

But over time, that judicial oversight — which is supposed to be the check in our checks-and-balance system — has largely become a rubber stamp to whatever the doctor thinks is best. The patient’s voice once again threatens to become silenced, now under the guise of “assisted outpatient treatment” (just a modern, different term for forced treatment).

This double standard needs to end. If we don’t require forced treatment for cancer patients who could be cured by chemotherapy, there’s little justification for keeping it around for mental illness.

How to Enjoy the Busiest Time of Year

Sunday, November 25th, 2012

How to Enjoy the Busiest Time of YearMany view the holidays as being trapped in one huge stress bubble that threatens to explode at any moment. People may even find themselves poking through their medicine cabinets, looking for a dose of Advil to minimize a tension-induced headache.

As a result of all the strain, many resent what should be “the most wonderful time of year.”

In her article, How to Enjoy the Holiday Season Again, author Debbie Mandel discusses how the holidays may ignite stress, sadness and loneliness. Missing a loved one, for instance, only intensifies those feelings.

The Key to Celebrating Holidays with Multiple Family Loyalties

Sunday, November 25th, 2012

Step, Blended & Reconfigured: Making Holidays Bright for Kids with Multiple Family Loyalties

“You hear a lot of dialogue on the death of the American family. Families aren’t dying. They’re merging into big conglomerates.”
~ Erma Bombeck

They are called stepfamilies, blended families, reconstituted or reconfigured. The modern family often includes multiple people from multiple relationships. More than any other time of year, holidays highlight the departure from what has been seen as the “traditional” family.

As with most things, this can be an affirmation of successful reconfiguration of one’s family or a reminder of all the things that were, and perhaps still are, wrong. For most, it’s a complicated mix of regrets, relief, anger, sorrow and joy.

For most, it’s how the adults manage the situation that determines the health and safety of the heart part of the new configuration of the family.

4 Tips to Help Your Marriage Thrive

Saturday, November 24th, 2012

Making Your Marriage Thrive: 4 Tips That May HelpThis guest article from YourTango was written by .

Many women and men dismiss bits of information about their partner that turn out to be warning signs for future trouble. These subtle feelings are actually your gut telling you to pay attention to something.

During the early phase of marriage, most people want to see the good in their spouse. Overall, I think this is a good strategy. However, it is also important and healthy to be able to trust your gut when you feel there is a problem in your relationship and address it with your spouse.

Trusting your gut involves some basic skills, so let’s look at four tips that may help improve the chances of your marriage thriving.

12 Depression Busters for Caregivers

Saturday, November 24th, 2012

12 Depression Busters for CaregiversNearly one-third of people caring for terminally ill loved ones suffer from depression according to research from Yale University. About one in four family caregivers meet the clinical criteria of anxiety. And a recent study found that 41 percent of former caregivers of a spouse with Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia experienced mild to severe depression up to three years after their spouse had died.

Caregivers are so vulnerable to depression because they often sacrifice their own needs while tending to their loved one and because of the constant stress involved.

So here are 12 tips to help protect you from anxiety and depression and to guide you toward good mental health as you care for a relative.

Why Powerful Men Cheat

Saturday, November 24th, 2012

Why Powerful Men CheatBoth men and women cheat — regardless of race, age or stature, according to Terri Orbuch, author of Finding Love Again: 6 Simple Steps to a New and Happy Relationship. In fact, about 32 percent of married men and 20 percent of married women report being unfaithful, she said.

But when powerful men — most recently CIA Director General David Petraeus — admit to infidelity, we’re often taken aback. (Or maybe some of us aren’t that shocked, after all.)

Petraeus joins a long line of philanderers in prominent positions: Anthony Weiner, Eliot Spitzer, Bill Clinton and John Edwards, just to name a few.

But regardless of whether you’re surprised to hear these men strayed, the question is the same: Why?

The Journal of Mortifying Moments: Detecting Patterns

Friday, November 23rd, 2012

The Journal of Mortifying Moments: Detecting PatternsDuring one of my routine trips to the library — I haven’t adopted the Kindle groove yet and still enjoy the physical act of turning pages — I was perusing the women’s fiction section to get my chick-lit fix, and landed on Robyn Harding’s refreshingly funny novel, The Journal of Mortifying Moments.

Kerry Spence, the protagonist in Harding’s novel, is quirky and kind of lovable, though she emits an aura of low self-esteem as a result of past rejections.

Her therapist recommends that she keep a journal of all of her painfully embarrassing and hurtful incidents involving the opposite sex, in the hopes that she can detect an ongoing pattern in her romantic relationships.

Best of Our Blogs: November 23, 2012

Friday, November 23rd, 2012

At best, you’re back from Thanksgiving with a warm full tummy, loving memories with friends and/or family, a handful of yummy leftovers and lingering feelings of gratitude. At the least, you made it! You survived with turkey day emotions managed and self intact. Now moving onto the winter holidays…

But in case you’d like to pause a bit and remedy some of the situations or experiences that didn’t go on as planned yesterday or recently, you might want to read our posts this week. It’s not about Thanksgiving per say, but about the things we can do now to better our tomorrow.

Forget about waiting on someone else for things to improve. These posts are all about learning what you can do to change your situation. Whether it’s discovering ways to get more traffic to your website, communicating better with your spouse or managing your emotions, you’ll learn quickly that having a happier and more successful life involves empowering yourself.

Happy Belated Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving 2012

Thursday, November 22nd, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving to all of our loyal readers!

We give thanks for what we have, not what we don’t. We appreciate and thank you for …

3 Ways to Cultivate Gratitude

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

3 Ways to Cultivate GratitudeGratitude is a lifejacket on a sinking ship. Gratitude is a door held by a stranger when you’re carrying lots of stuff. It’s a smile from your spouse after you’ve had one of those days at work. It’s a blanket when you’re cold. Soup when you’re sick. A call when you’re lonely.

Gratitude provides for us even when we think we have nothing or no one. Because we do have many things and people in our lives. Gratitude just lifts the opaque veil from our eyes so we can see that more clearly.

“People who are grateful about events and experiences from the past, who celebrate the triumphs instead of focusing on the losses or disappointments, tend to be more satisfied in the present,” write Nina Lesowitz and Mary Beth Sammons in their book Living Life as a Thank You: My Journal.

In it, they feature practical exercises and inspiring stories and quotes to cultivate gratitude. Here are three exercises to try.

Staying Sane & Sober in Order to Survive the Holiday Season

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

Staying Sane & Sober in Order to Survive the Holiday SeasonI remember when I was an active …

The Secret & Silent Killer Behind Thinspiration

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

The Secret & Silent Killer Behind Thinspiration

Beautiful images of fashion, art, vacation destinations, and food: what’s not to love about Pinterest?

Well, after seeing several pins labeled “thinspiration,” displaying overly thin women and quotes like, “All I want is to be happy, confident, and skinny as hell,” I decided it was time to speak up.

The image in this post is of me, back in my modeling days. This photo was very popular with friends and family on Facebook and with my followers on a modeling website I was a member of at the time.

If Pinterest had been around back then, I definitely would have pinned it for all to see.

Some may look at this image and see a woman that offers “thinspiration,” but the truth is actually much darker.

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