Relationships Essential Reads

5 Reasons Why the Fairy Tale (Almost) Always Dies

The cultural roots of the warrior/hunter man and the feminine/passive-gatherer woman are reflected in the princess and knight in shining armor mentality promoted today. Although compelling, fairy tale expectations set many men and women up for eventual romantic defeat. Here are five reasons why fairy tale dreams often lead to misery in romance.

Are You A Status Seeker? The Chances Are Good that You Are

By Peg Streep on May 05, 2015 in Tech Support
Are we hardwired to crave status and to respond to people in programmed ways depending on their status? Is status about what money can buy or something else? A close look at what the research shows...

Unbroken by Divorce: 5 Rules of Resilience

By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on May 04, 2015 in Living Single
There are big differences among people in how well they do after getting divorced. A recent review article suggested 5 ways that resilient people differ from those who have the hardest time.

What Do Women Look for in a Mate?

By Romeo Vitelli Ph.D. on May 04, 2015 in Media Spotlight
Some researchers have named those qualities that women look at in choosing a mate as the Three Gees - good genes, good providers, and good fathers. Men who can demonstrate all three of these qualities stand the greatest chance of winning the mate selection competition. But how important are these traits? New research from China puts the Three Gees to the test.

The Power of Influence

While I was growing up, my brothers (I'm the eldest of four boys) often chided me for being so much like my father. I suppose it was inevitable that I would be; firstborn children tend to be rule followers (if you believe in the significance of birth order) and I fit the stereotype.

Six Tips to Guide You in Sharing Your Feelings

We say that people have “no filter” when they let everyone know exactly what they’re thinking at any given moment. Although self-disclosure can promote intimacy, there are times when discretion trumps honesty in order to preserve your relationships. These 6 tips will help you develop that perfect filter.

Mind the Gap

By Seth J. Gillihan Ph.D. on April 30, 2015 in Think, Act, Be
We can train our minds to avoid going off track.

Your Version of Reality, and Mine

By Gregg Henriques on April 30, 2015 in Theory of Knowledge
Although many folks assume that there is a single reality that is readily perceived, the fact of the matter is that we construct versions of reality based on our backgrounds, frames, motives, and broader life narratives. This blog explains how this insight can often be used to help couples break unproductive cycles of blame.

How Social You Are in College Predicts Loneliness at Midlife

By Guy Winch Ph.D. on April 30, 2015 in The Squeaky Wheel
Can we predict who might be at risk for becoming lonely later in life?

How to Build Rapport: A Powerful Technique

By Aldo Civico Ph.D. on April 29, 2015 in Turning Point
Knowing how to build rapport is at the root of our personal and professional success. Here is a powerful technique you can practice right away, as soon as you finish reading this article.

Wife Swapping in the Stone Age

By Nigel Barber Ph.D. on April 29, 2015 in The Human Beast
Anthropologists are all too familiar with the violence and bloodshed triggered by marital infidelity. Now they are coming to terms with a more mysterious phenomenon—consensual wife sharing. If a man flies into homicidal rages when his wife cheats on him, why would he encourage another man to sleep with her?

Can Women Ever Be Taken Seriously?

Gravitas, or the assertion of power through body language, is a concept usually associated with men. However, it is possible under the right circumstances for women to have a piece of the power dynamic pie.

Why Betrayal Hurts So Much (and Who Seeks Revenge)

A betrayal by someone you trust is one of the most challenging interpersonal situations you can face in life. Whether through infidelity or a failure to fulfill a promise, betrayal leads to a desire for revenge, particularly in some people. New neuroscience research suggests who’s most likely to be hurt by a betrayal and why.

5 Ways to Make Small Talk Worth the Trouble

By F. Diane Barth L.C.S.W. on April 24, 2015 in Off the Couch
Do you hate small talk? You’re not alone, of course. Maybe you’re shy, or introverted, or maybe you’re bored by it. Or do you get irritated by the apparently endless and meaningless chatter? Here are 5 reasons to change your mind. And 5 techniques for getting better at it.

5 Ways to Heal a Broken Heart

How do you recover from one of the most painful life experiences?

Are Babies Contagious?

We commonly consider fertility outcomes to be idiosyncratic or accidental. But parenthood spreads through social networks, passing between siblings, friends, and co-workers. Why might the baby bug be so contagious and how do prospective parents catch it?

Should You Think Twice Before Moving In With a Partner?

Test-driving a relationship by moving in together before marriage seems like the cautious thing to do. But couples who live together prior to marriage are at higher risk for relationship troubles and divorce. Why do these relationships falter and how can you avoid possible negative effects of premarital cohabitation?

Why Regret May Not Always Be a Bad Thing (But Sometimes Is)

By Peg Streep on April 22, 2015 in Tech Support
Regret, paradoxically, can both make you unhappy and, sometimes, provide the boost you need to make better choices for yourself and increase your happiness. A look at how regret functions in different individual's lives.

A Destination Divorce? Get Outta Town! No, Really

By Wendy Paris on April 21, 2015 in Splitopia
You don’t need to travel to get a divorce today, but purveyors of tropical divorce getaways insist you might reach a better agreement under the swaying palm trees of someplace else.

Developmental Dislike of Parents During Early Adolescence

One function of adolescence is to grow parent and adolescent apart. Dislike of parents is part of what allows this social separation to occur. Most important for parents to remember is that this loss of liking for parents does not mean any lessening of of adolescent love.

I'm Having An Impossible Time With A Break-Up

Breaking Up in The Age of Social Media

3 Tips for Seeking Compassion When Emotionally Distressed

By Guy Winch Ph.D. on April 19, 2015 in The Squeaky Wheel
When you want to reach out after an emotionally distressing event, which person is more likely to be compassionate and supportive, someone who has been through a similar experience or someone who has not? Read on to find out...

6 Tips for Managing Life With a Control Freak

By Robert Taibbi L.C.S.W. on April 17, 2015 in Fixing Families
It's difficult to live with someone who is always controlling in a variety of ways. Some tips for not taking it personally and for changing the dynamics.

Breakup: How to Tell If You Suffer from Complicated Grief

Sometimes it is impossible to let go of grief. When you continue to grieve a loss, your condition is called complicated grief. Complicated grief is so severe that psychiatrists now consider it for inclusion in the psychiatric manual for diagnosing mental disorders. Here is how to tell if you suffer from complicated grief.

When Women Use Jealousy

By Duana C. Welch Ph.D. on April 16, 2015 in Love Proof
Common knowledge says jealousy always backfires. Common knowledge is wrong.

If You Judge People, You Have No Time To Love Them

By Allison Carmen on April 16, 2015 in The Gift of Maybe
"If You Judge People, You Have No Time To Love Them." Mother Teresa Our judgments interfere with many of our relationships. Often we get so consumed with everything our spouse, child, friend or co-worker is not doing right, that we often forget to see what is special and wonderful about them.

Expanding the Self

We should reciprocate the gift of our own lives..... To be focused narrowly - worrying excessively about our personal skills and accomplishments and about the public's regards of these - is to remain forever a child.

4 Ways to Disarm Jealousy

Obsessive thinking is inevitably inaccurate.

Evolutionary Psychology Is Not About "Bettering the Species"

People often think that since "evolution" has a lot to do with speciation, then "evolutionary psychology" must be about "bettering the human species" in some way. It's not. At all. Read this if you want to know what evolutionary psychology is really about.

What to Do When Your Life Takes an Unexpected Turn

As you make your way through life, you are guided by both the long- and short-term goals you’ve set for yourself. However, your plans may take an unexpected turn. From research on “career shocks,” you can learn to manage the unexpectedly good and bad that life throws your way whether in your career or your relationships.