Relationships

5 Strategies for Dealing With Your Partner’s Fear of Intimacy

As a therapist, I often hear couples complain that whenever one partner tries to get close, the other pulls away. It’s a painful reality that love isn’t always as easy to give and receive as we’d like to think. Many people have developed defenses that make them intolerant of too much love, attention or affection…. Read more »

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Why Are We Hooked on Rejection?

You don’t need to be a psychologist to note the very harsh effects of a breakup on a person’s mental health. When a relationship ends, humiliation, rage, loneliness, anguish and grief all seem to simultaneously show up at the door, marching in arm-in-arm to parade noisily around our psyche. Evicting these emotions is a matter… Read more »

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A Relationship is a Creative Work: An Interview with Dr. James and Carol Gilligan

A Relationship Is A Creative Work Dr. Carol Gilligan: It’s like, if you do any creative work, you have to be willing to fail because creative work means you’re walking off the edge of a cliff. You don’t know what you’re going to do. And we’re a society that has a very low tolerance of… Read more »

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Dating Resolutions: 7 Characteristics of an Ideal Partner

Dec. 31 may be all about the New Year’s kiss, but by New Year’s Day, most people are thinking about what comes after the kiss. This can be a good metaphor for our dating habits in general. The person we look to for instant passion, an immediate spark or even a New Year’s kiss is… Read more »

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Real Love or a Fantasy Bond: The Appeal of the Twilight Saga

The latest Twilight movie “Breaking Dawn” is already breaking records. Young fans clamored and camped out on dirty sidewalks for hours (even days) to make it to Friday’s midnight premiere. Walking past one such line, I noticed a father dropping off a shrieking group of dressed up 15-year-old girls from a stretched hummer, rented just… Read more »

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Fear of Intimacy: Understanding Why People Fear Intimacy

What is Fear of Intimacy? Fear of intimacy is an often subconscious fear of closeness that frequently affects people’s personal relationships. This fear of physical and/or emotional intimacy tends to show up in people’s closest and most meaningful relationships. Where Does This Fear of Intimacy Come From? While there are times when we are aware… Read more »

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Alive Sexuality by Robert Firestone, Ph.D.

Sex is one of the strongest motivating forces in life. It has the potential for creating intense pleasure and fulfillment or for causing considerable pain and suffering. The effect of a natural expression of sexuality on one’s sense of well-being and overall enjoyment of life cannot be over-emphasized. The way people feel about themselves as… Read more »

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Can Love be Learned?

Anyone who has indulged in romantic comedies like When Harry Met Sally, As Good as it Gets, Moonstruck or pretty much anything starring Sandra Bullock knows the theme of opposites attracting and enemies becoming lovers. This theme has been around since the beginning of time; We see it in Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew and… Read more »

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It’s Not You It’s Me: The Truth Behind The Excuse

Anyone who’s done their share of dating has probably been on one side or the other of the It’s not you, it’s me routine. These five common words, which strive for compassion, in reality just leave our exes confused and puzzling over what went wrong. No one buys this explanation. And why should they? After all, most… Read more »

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It Is Immoral To Stop People From Loving You

Some of the most destructive behaviors, commonplace in relationships, are those that people act out in an attempt to ward off loving responses from their partner. In The Ethics of Interpersonal Relationships, I wrote about the dynamics underlying this phenomenon, explaining why we often punish the very person who appreciates and acknowledges us for our positive… Read more »

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