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January Quandary: Should I Keep One Partner’s Secret in Couples Therapy?

Five Clinicians Give Their Take

Chris Lyford • 3 Comments

By Chris Lyford - Mark and his wife, Nicole, have been in couples therapy for almost six months. But Mark recently requested an individual session, where he revealed he recently shared a kiss with an old girlfriend and has plans to rekindle their friendship. He's asked his therapist to keep the whole thing a secret. Here's how five clinicians say they'd tackle the situation.

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Handling Unexpected Intimacy Issues

Not a Sex Therapist? No Problem

Stephen Snyder • 1 Comment

By Stephen Snyder - It’s a shame that so many therapists shy away from talking about sex in the consulting room, believing that they don’t have sufficient expertise. The reality is that any well-trained therapist can help clients understand, and in many cases even resolve, sexual problems—simply by using their natural curiosity, some common sense, and a few key tools.

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The Meaning Behind Money

Getting to the Root of Couples' Arguments about Finances

Sally Palaian • No Comments

By Sally Palaian - These days, couples often come into therapy with problems related to their finances. Here's how to distinguish between money difficulties caused by the economy and those that are more psychological in nature.

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Putting an End to the Blame Game

A Tool for Helping Partners See Both Sides

Alicia Muñoz • No Comments

By Alicia Muñoz - Giving up being right doesn’t mean you give up your convictions. It means honoring a multiplicity of viewpoints. Rumi says, “Somewhere beyond right and wrong, there is a garden. I will meet you there.” For couples, this garden is their relationship.

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Is Porn a Threat to Public Health?

Here Are the Questions You Need to Ask Clients Using Porn

Wendy Maltz • 4 Comments

By Wendy Maltz - The explosion in porn use has happened so fast that many therapists have been caught unprepared. And despite the increase in the number of people suffering from serious consequences of habitual porn use, few therapists feel comfortable and confident addressing porn-related concerns.

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“You Should Know What I Need”

A Simple Exercise to Help Couples Avoid the Assumption Trap

Alicia Muñoz • No Comments

By Alicia Muñoz - Satisfying our needs is a gift our partners give us. Being responsible calls for a willingness to ask clearly and vulnerably for what we want, and to tolerate disappointment.

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VIDEO: Esther Perel on the New Rules of Love and Commitment

How Boomers Shaped Millennial Romance

Esther Perel • 1 Comment

Couples therapist Esther Perel has been recognized as one of the world’s most original and insightful thinkers about couples, sexuality, and the peculiar paradoxes besetting modern marriage in the Western world. In this clip from her Networker Symposium keynote, she talks about the complicated and contradictory needs that are shaping Millennial marriage and commitment today.

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Embracing Emotion in Couples Therapy

Susan Johnson on Creating a Road Map Through Couples Conflict

Susan Johnson • 4 Comments

By Susan Johnson - Neuroscientists have recently established emotion is the prime force shaping how we cope with life’s challenges. Psychotherapists are beginning to learn how to work with emotion, rather than trying to control it or creating change through purely cognitive or behavioral means.

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The Resurgence of Patriarchy

Why We Need to Leave Neutrality Behind

Terry Real • 5 Comments

By Terry Real - Factions of men and women these days are feeling a powerful pull toward many of the notions of traditional masculinity. What we’re witnessing is a reassertion of its most difficult and harmful traits. And yet we psychotherapists, as a field, have remained largely silent about this resurgence. Is neutrality in these times really in our clients’ best interests?

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The Core of Couples Therapy

Susan Johnson Explains the Root of Most Couples Conflict

Susan Johnson • 1 Comment

By Susan Johnson - In couples therapy, the heart of the matter rarely concerns the content of a couple's arguments, but almost always concerns the strength and responsiveness of the attachment relationship they have. The bottom-line test of that relationship is in the answer to a fundamental question each is asking the other: Are you really there for me?

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