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Helping Couples Cross the Argument Impasse

A Four-Step Process

B. Janet Hibbs

By B. Janet Hibbs - In their first therapy session, Bob tells his wife, Sandy, to stop emailing her former college boyfriend. She refuses, feeling mistrusted and controlled, and their exchange heats up. Many couples like these are at an impasse, caught up in a struggle to prove who's right. Here's how to help them get past these kinds of unwinnable arguments and resolve their differences.

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Confronting Technostress

We're Being Smothered in Data. Here's What Therapists Can Do About It.

Margaret Wehrenberg

By Margaret Wehrenberg - Perhaps no endemic workplace condition causes more anguish among employees than the culture of contrived urgency, the ginned-up atmosphere of crisis, in which everything—every project, every report, every meeting—is an urgent priority, superseding all the other urgent priorities before it in the long queue.

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My Father's Ranch

A Daughter Wrestles with Bittersweet Memories and a New, Looming Threat

Alicia Muñoz

By Alicia Muñoz - Sometimes family legacies can stir up complicated feelings and outright conflict.

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Esther Perel's Secret to Weathering an Affair

Two Ways Couples Who Bounced Back Made It Happen

Esther Perel

By Esther Perel - For several years, I've been contacting couples I've treated to find out more about the long-term impact of the infidelity that brought them to therapy. What were the useful shock absorbers that sustained the couple? Did they think that therapy had helped? I identified three basic patterns in the way couples reorganize themselves after an infidelity.

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The Flow of Dialogue

Three Steps to Effective Conversation

Oren Jay Sofer

By Oren Jay Sofer - Dialogue is a lot like dancing. It takes time to learn the basics, but when we’re conversing smoothly with someone else, it can be magical. We find a flow as we shift attention back and forth, hearing one another and allowing things to settle.

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August Quandary: My Client Keeps Checking His Phone During Sessions!

Five Clinicians Give Their Take on This Tricky Clinical Scenario

Chris Lyford

By Chris Lyford - Jonathan is in his 30s and struggles with intimacy, which is why he came to therapy. Sometimes during sessions, he checks his phone for emails or updates, even though his therapist has asked him not to. She suspects Jonathan's phone use may be affecting his “real life” relationships, but he insists it’s not a problem. Here's how five therapists say they'd tackle the situation.

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VIDEO: Julie Gottman on When Partners Get Flooded

What Works in Couples Therapy

Julie Gottman

The hallmark of John and Julie Gottmans’ work is taking the rare step of actually observing the broadest sample of couples they can find, rather than relying on personal intuitions about the world, to inform their approach in the consulting room. In this clip from their keynote, Julie Gottman shares what four decades of research has taught them about how to help partners who become emotionally "flooded."

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A Daughter's Broken Heart

A Special Story from Our Family Matters Section

Gregory Samuels

By Gregory Samuels - My daughter has a broken heart. She’s 6,000 miles away, across an ocean, on a semester abroad, and she’s stricken. I was about the same age as Erin is now when I first had my heart broken, and I can’t help but wonder if, along with bad love-karma, I’ve somehow passed along some terrible predisposition. Was there a way to raise her so that she’d be impervious to love turned sour?

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5 Strategies for Forging Healthy Relationships with Others (and Yourself)

How to Make Connections for a Truly Happy Life after 50

Andrea Brandt

By Andrea Brandt - In this third part of a three-part series adapted from the upcoming book Mindful Aging: Embracing Your Life after 50 to Find Fulfillment, Purpose, and Joy, author and clinician Andrea Brandt looks at how a more intentional relationship with ourselves can lead to more satisfying relationships with others.

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VIDEO: Susan Johnson on the Link Between Sex and Safety

How a "Secure Base" Promotes Sexual Exploration

Susan Johnson

What does it take to restore physical intimacy to a failing relationship? In this video clip, Susan Johnson, the originator of Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy, uses bonding science to explain the one condition every relationship needs in order to repair emotional hurt and restore satisfying sex. Take a moment to watch this clip. You'll be glad you did.

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