In the "First Do No Harm" (healthy relationships) chapter of Living Well, Despite Catchin' Hell, I include eighteen medical "pearls of wisdom" we physicians are given when caring for patients, and I realize they can also help readers heal and bolster their interpersonal relationships. I hereby share excerpts of two more pearls:

Don’t Leave the Tourniquet on Longer Than Necessary

Tourniquets are constricting; they cut off blood flow. If left in place too long, serious damage to an appendage or organ may occur. The goal is to apply the tourniquet for the shortest time possible.

In relationships, women sometimes engage certain restraints such as withholding sex, or other tactics, to punish men. It is better to make your point, do and say what needs to be done or said…then let it go. Don’t continue to cut off the communication and intimacies you share. Don’t cut off the circulation of your heart.

In the words of the late actress Marlene Dietrich, “Once a woman has forgiven her man, she must not reheat his sins for breakfast.”

When in Over Your Head, Call for Help!

In surgery, it is crucial to not let the patient die. At times a surgical case may prove to be more challenging than anticipated, and a surgeon may get into difficulty. If you don’t know what you’re doing—or it’s too much for you to handle—get some help…quick!

If personal issues are so difficult that you and your partner cannot work them out between you, call for help; engage or utilize a family counselor, your pastor, a psychologist, or other mediator who can help direct you to a good end. Don’t let pride or ego stand in your way.

For more 'pearls of wisdom,' see the e-book collection of First Do No Harm: How to Heal Your Relationships Using the Wisdom of Professional Caregivers: http://amzn.to/YWSXqa. Feel free to share the link.

Copyright © 2012 Dr. Melody T. McCloud. All rights reserved. Any excerpts from this article should include a hyperlink to this--my original post on Psychology Today, with author credit. Feel free to post the link to this, and any of my PT posts, to your social network pages. Follow me here at PT, and now (I've finally joined the fray) on Twitter: @DrMelodyMcCloud.

Living Well, Despite Catchin' Hell, a book about health, sex and happiness, with a foreword by Pauletta Washington, musician and wife of Academy Award winner, Denzel Washington; and endorsed by psychologist Dr. Jeff Gardere and others. The book includes current comparative data for Black, White, Hispanic, Asian and Native American women. The first book in 8 years addressing Black women's health; also addresses the effects of negative stereotypes. (print and eBook).

Melodies of the Heart: Poems of Life & Love (eBook with erotic love poems and more)

Medical Bloopers! Amusing & Amazing Stories of Health Care Workers (foreword by Dr. Neil Shulman, author of Doc Hollywood). (a little levity, now as an eBook. Nurses Week this month!! Treat your nurse or other health care workers to an electronic delight, sure to tickle his/her funny bone!)

About the Author

Melody T. McCloud M.D.

Melody T. McCloud, M.D., is an obstetrician-gynecologist and the author of First Do No Harm: How to Heal Your Relationships Using the Wisdom of Professional Caregivers.

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