All About Relationships

Love is one of the most profound emotions known to human beings. There are many kinds of love, but most people seek its expression in a romantic relationship with a compatible partner. For some, romantic relationships are the most meaningful element in their lives, providing a source of deep fulfillment. The ability to have a healthy, loving relationship is not innate. A great deal of evidence suggests that the ability to form a stable relationship begins in infancy, in a child's earliest experiences with a caregiver who reliably meets the infant's needs for food, care, protection, stimulation, and social contact. Those relationships are not destiny, but they appear to establish patterns of relating to others. Failed relationships happen for many reasons, and the failure of a relationship is often a source of great psychological anguish. Most of us have to work consciously to master the skills necessary to make them flourish.

Recent posts on Relationships


Here Come the Holidays

Prepare now with these 7 tips if family get togethers are struggles throughout the holidays and look forward to them with happy anticipation instead of fear and dread.

We Need a New Word for Stepparents

By Wendy Paris on October 25, 2016 in Splitopia
The fact that a stepparent is not a legal relationship highlights the role of strong emotional bonds within a blended family structure. Three tips for building good bonds.

New Research Shows Relationships End in 5 Stages

It may seem random, but when relationships come to an end, they often go through a series of predictable stages. New research shows how to tell whether you're ready to move on.

Does Porn Damage Your Relationship?

By Robert Burriss Ph.D. on October 25, 2016 in Attraction, Evolved
The stereotypical porn user is a single man. But couples view pornography too. What effect does it have on their relationships?

A Grown-Up's Guide to Friendship

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on October 25, 2016 in How To Do Life
Making, deepening, and keeping friends. / AdobeStock

The Surprising Reason People Aren’t There for You

When people don’t listen to you, don’t have your back, or constantly let you down, are they treating you the way you treat yourself?

Bringing Gaslighting to Light, Part III

Are you being gaslighted? Here's how to tell!

Myth of the Perfect Partner

Mary and Jordan are a couple I worked with fell into a pattern of avoiding sex because Jordan had come on too strong, too directly, without setting a context for love-making.

Faces of the Narcissist: The Critic and the Judge

Eight tips to protect yourself from a critical and judgmental narcissist.
Wikimedia Commons

Open or Closed Sexual Relationships?

What do we know about consensual non-monogamous relationships? This study is a first step.

The Crisis of the Ailing Toxic Mother: Caretake or Run?

By Peg Streep on October 24, 2016 in Tech Support
Much has been written about the "Sandwich" generation-but the daughter of an unloving or abusive mother faces a different, more complicated choice without easy answers...

Moments That Changed Everything

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on October 24, 2016 in How To Do Life
And how you might change things again.

How Much Money Should You Spend on a Wedding Gift?

Economics and psychological perspectives provide us with different spending values in response to this common question.

"Help Me Stop Thinking About My Ex Girlfriend"

"She’s all fine and dandy, and I struggle with this every day," Jim said after his girlfriend of several years broke up with him. Read on to find out how people like Jim can cope.

Matt and Lisa’s Wedding Ceremony

It’s much safer and more convenient to fall in love with your phone.
Fotolia, with permission

The Day After the Election, Will We Still Be Friends?

By Allison Carmen on October 23, 2016 in The Gift of Maybe
Many of us have people in our lives that we have argued with or may not be speaking to because of the presidential election. How can we repair these relationships and begin again?

You’re Not Crazy⎯He’s (or She's) Controlling!

By Carol A. Lambert, MSW on October 22, 2016 in Mind Games
Psychological abuse incites greater fear and impacts a woman's or man's psyche and sense of wellbeing to the same extent as physical abuse.

Sex, Power, and Risk

By Joye Swan Ph.D. on October 22, 2016 in Up Close and Personal
When it comes to power in sexual relationships, who really controls what goes on in the bedroom?

Election Stress Disorder

By Stan Tatkin Psy.D. on October 22, 2016 in The Puzzle of Love
Americans are suffering emotionally due to the caustic nature of the election, and our brains offer both the explanation and the solution.

The Impact of Death on our Everyday Lives

Defensive reactions to personal trauma, separation issues, and especially death anxiety impact our lives at three distinct levels.

Are You Obsessing Over Your Ex?

If your ex recently broke up with you, you may have OCD-like symptoms. The good news: standard self-help techniques for OCD may be able to speed up your recovery from the breakup.

Those Who Make Your Checklist Often Don’t Make It

It’s the one that contains all the characteristics of the partner of your dreams, the one with whom you know you’ll experience happiness forever after.

Brad & Angelina, Five Takeaways

What can we take away from the highly publicized Jolie/Pitt divorce and apply to our own relationships?

Do Facebook "Likes" Affect Psychological Well-Being?

By Gwendolyn Seidman Ph.D. on October 20, 2016 in Close Encounters
New research shows that the way we're affected by Facebook likes may depend on our self-esteem, and our sense of purpose in life.

Love Handles

How we “handle”, or better yet, help a significant other overcome negative experiences and behaviors can pave the way for more positive present and future sexual encounters.
Judith Orloff

Beware of the Go-For-the-Jugular Vampire

By Judith Orloff M.D. on October 20, 2016 in Emotional Freedom
This vampire is one of the most malevolent of bloodsuckers, this person is vindictive and cuts you down with no consideration for your feelings. Learn how to protect yourself.

How Do I Handle My Father's Mental Ilness?

By Barbara Greenberg Ph.D. on October 20, 2016 in The Teen Doctor
How to handle a father's mental illness

Cheating? But It Was Just a Webcam!

As our lives have become increasingly digital, the once-clear line between monogamy and infidelity has blurred.

There's Only One Way to Love: Bravely

By Alexandra Solomon Ph.D. on October 20, 2016 in Loving Bravely
How do you reconcile the romanticized images of love portrayed in the media with the lived experiences of being in an intimate relationship? Let self-awareness be your guide.

My Mother's First Love at Age 93, by Caroline Leavitt

By Jennifer Haupt on October 20, 2016 in One True Thing
My mother begins to talk about love differently. It’s no longer the thing that ruins lives, that traps you. Instead, it’s this wonderful secret she wants to share with everyone.