Understanding Family Dynamics

Can't we all get along? That's a tall order when your limelight has been snatched away by your adorable new little brother. Family: You love them and you hate them. There are so many things to consider when you think of family: there's birth order, rivalries, the only child, to name a few.

Recent posts on Family Dynamics

8 Movies to Watch with Your Teen

Movies are not just entertainment. When characters connect at deep psychological levels, movies can quite literally shape young people’s lives!
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What Parents Have Trouble Admitting About College Admissions

By Brad E Sachs Ph.D. on December 05, 2016 in Emptying The Nest
Are you becoming overly preoccupied with your high school senior's college plans? Paying close attention to the underlying issues may help you and your child survive and thrive.

Eating Disorders: How Far We Have Come

Causes of eating disorders are complex and multi-determined. A succinct understanding of where research and theory are headed.

Love and Separation Throughout the Life Cycle

By Roberta Satow Ph.D. on December 03, 2016 in Life After 50
Do you wish your adult children needed you more?

Finding Gratitude in Mistakes

By Julie K. Hersh on December 03, 2016 in Struck By Living
Are you having trouble coping with the holiday family get togethers? This might help.

Don't Just Survive the Holidays, Enjoy Them

By Andrea Brandt Ph.D. M.F.T. on December 02, 2016 in Mindful Anger
So how do you hold onto the good things you like about this time of year, and get rid of all the things you hate?

Respectful Disagreements

By Paul Ekman Ph.D. on December 01, 2016 in Face It!
With the holidays upon us after one of the most controversial elections, here are some tips on how to engage in respectful disagreements.

Overprotective Parenting and Symbolic Rejection

The problem with helicoptering is that, like being physically absent as a parent, being hyper-present can harm children.

6 Ways Holiday Visits Can Stress You Out

Do holiday visits with the family wear you out? You might have covert aggressors in your midst.

Good Divorce Weekend: The No-Spending Spree

By Wendy Paris on November 29, 2016 in Splitopia
Not shopping for Black Friday deals, or Saturday or Sunday specials, made this holiday weekend special for my family.
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'Tis the Season to Stay Calm

By Dora Calott Wang M.D. on November 28, 2016 in The Kitchen Shrink
Expecting people to change is unrealistic—especially during Christmas dinner.

Are Your Partner's Rules Ruining Your Sex Life?

Sexual boundaries protect our special commitment. Sex rules, on the other hand, are often unspoken and usually limit sex.

Understanding Your Child’s Spiritual Life

By Kate Adams Ph.D. on November 27, 2016 in Child's Play
How well do you understand your child's inner life?

Help! My College Kid Is Driving Me Crazy

By Deborah J. Cohan, Ph.D. on November 26, 2016 in Social Lights
How do we know when our kids are back at home?

Parents Cut Off by Adult Children: Clueless? Part 2

By David M. Allen M.D. on November 25, 2016 in A Matter of Personality
In a previous post I opined that most parents whose adult children have cut them off know the real reason. That is not always the case. This post describes one common issue.

An Uneventful Thanksgiving Trip

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on November 25, 2016 in How To Do Life
Thoughts on your next long-distance family get-together.

Winter Holiday Weight Gain and Related Biological Causes

There are seasonal biological changes that facilitate an increase in our caloric intake.

Talking Politics at the Thanksgiving Table

How can we heal the divides in our country -- and our family? A few simple tools can go a long way.
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When Your Son or Daughter Stops Calling

Parents might panic when their 20-something children move away and cut off communication. But at that age, some estrangement may be par for the course. It's usually temporary.

10 Tips for Talking to People You Can't Agree With

When you find yourself on the opposite end of a heated debate, whether with family or friends, new research on diversity vs. differences can help you bridge the gap.

Tips to Survive Thanksgiving in Post-Election Turmoil

By Mark O'Connell L.C.S.W.- R. on November 22, 2016 in Quite Queerly
How can we get through Thanksgiving without harming anyone or being harmed? We must keep our expectations low, and our goals specific. Try to connect over being right.

Holiday Help for Emotional Overeaters

By Susan McQuillan M.S., RDN on November 21, 2016 in Cravings
Holiday anxiety creeping up? Don't let it trigger you to overeat.

5 Tips for Adult Children of Narcissists

Adult children who do not end the narcissistic cycle through direct action are the ones most likely to perpetuate the detrimental patterns in their own adult relationships.
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How to Have a Happy Thanksgiving with Difficult Relatives

By Gretchen Rubin on November 21, 2016 in The Happiness Project
Here are some strategies for keeping Thanksgiving dinner — or any holiday gathering, at any time of the year — pleasant.

"You Voted for Whom?!"

By Alexandra Solomon Ph.D. on November 20, 2016 in Loving Bravely
Unsure how your family will make it through Thanksgiving after the 2016 election? A family therapist explains how to stay connected during this tender and uncertain time.

How to Win Over Your Romantic Partner's Parents

Dinner conversation can be an emotional minefield. Follow these 10 tips to become a celebrated dinner guest.

3 Suggestions for Responding Wisely to the Election Results

By Toni Bernhard J.D. on November 19, 2016 in Turning Straw Into Gold
On November 17th, the New York Times had a front page story on the turmoil many families in the U.S. are facing this holiday season in light of the Presidential election.

Family Stories as a Way to Give Thanks

By Robyn Fivush Ph.D. on November 19, 2016 in The Stories of Our Lives
Family stories bring families together, and really, isn’t that what we all hope to be thankful for?

The “Do You Know?” 20 Questions About Family Stories

By Robyn Fivush Ph.D. on November 19, 2016 in The Stories of Our Lives
The "Do You Know..?" questions are one way to tell family stories and begin a tradition of sharing more.

Growing Up with a Mentally Ill Parent

Growing up with mentally ill parents is never an easy task. Here are 7 tips to help you break the silence with your family members to begin making sense of the past.