Evolution of the Self

On the paradoxes of personality

What If Your Ambivalence Can’t Be Resolved?

There’s a common belief that with the right mind set virtually all conflicts are resolvable. But in many instances, making such an assumption is simply unrealistic: a fiction, a fantasy. As a therapist, over the years I’ve encountered many situations in which a client was struggling mightily with ambivalence. And no simple resolution to their dilemma existed. Read More


What a brilliant outline of this type of dilemma. You have perfectly described what I have gone through at certain times in my life and I am sure millions of other people.

The inability to decide because of fear or dreaming up the worst case is paralyzingly. It's funny, what you wrote seems so simple, so clear, yet I have never heard it articulated so well.

Why don't we teach people at a young age to learn how to make decisions. Why must they wait until their 50 to learn this skill.

Thanks for the wonderful insights.

Holy crap dude, did you nail

Holy crap dude, did you nail this. My divorce was absolutely laden with this kind of ambivalence, and even though I finally did extricate myself from the marriage, it was nothing close to a "Well thank God that's over" finality. It's good to see my experience is common among conscientious people.

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Leon F. Seltzer, Ph.D., who holds doctorates in English and Psychology, is a clinical psychologist and author of Paradoxical Strategies in Psychotherapy.


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