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January Quandary: Should I Keep One Partner’s Secret in Couples Therapy?

Five Clinicians Give Their Take

Chris Lyford • 3 Comments

By Chris Lyford - Mark and his wife, Nicole, have been in couples therapy for almost six months. But Mark recently requested an individual session, where he revealed he recently shared a kiss with an old girlfriend and has plans to rekindle their friendship. He's asked his therapist to keep the whole thing a secret. Here's how five clinicians say they'd tackle the situation.

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VIDEO: The 3 Keys to Helping Clients Navigate Sexual Problems

You Don't Need to Be an Expert to Help Clients Get "Dumb and Happy"

Lauren Dockett • No Comments

Sex and relationship therapist Stephen Snyder talks with Psychotherapy Networker's Lauren Dockett about three simple things to do when you find yourself becoming a client's "accidental sex therapist."

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Putting an End to the Blame Game

A Tool for Helping Partners See Both Sides

Alicia Muñoz • No Comments

By Alicia Muñoz - Giving up being right doesn’t mean you give up your convictions. It means honoring a multiplicity of viewpoints. Rumi says, “Somewhere beyond right and wrong, there is a garden. I will meet you there.” For couples, this garden is their relationship.

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Is Porn a Threat to Public Health?

Here Are the Questions You Need to Ask Clients Using Porn

Wendy Maltz • 4 Comments

By Wendy Maltz - The explosion in porn use has happened so fast that many therapists have been caught unprepared. And despite the increase in the number of people suffering from serious consequences of habitual porn use, few therapists feel comfortable and confident addressing porn-related concerns.

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The Resurgence of Patriarchy

Why We Need to Leave Neutrality Behind

Terry Real • 5 Comments

By Terry Real - Factions of men and women these days are feeling a powerful pull toward many of the notions of traditional masculinity. What we’re witnessing is a reassertion of its most difficult and harmful traits. And yet we psychotherapists, as a field, have remained largely silent about this resurgence. Is neutrality in these times really in our clients’ best interests?

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The Core of Couples Therapy

Susan Johnson Explains the Root of Most Couples Conflict

Susan Johnson • 1 Comment

By Susan Johnson - In couples therapy, the heart of the matter rarely concerns the content of a couple's arguments, but almost always concerns the strength and responsiveness of the attachment relationship they have. The bottom-line test of that relationship is in the answer to a fundamental question each is asking the other: Are you really there for me?

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Helping People Pleasers Set Boundaries

…And What to Do When It Backfires

Alicia Muñoz • No Comments

Alicia Muñoz - Boundaries bind. They limit, stop, and inhibit. But they also free people up to be themselves. In couples where one partner is a people-pleaser, things can get even more complicated.

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Making Partners Therapists for Each Other

In a Good Relationship, Your Problems Aren't Yours Alone

Ellen Wachtel • No Comments

By Ellen Wachtel - In couples therapy, if we can help each partner be a better therapist for the other, all three of us can feel more helpful and effective. My favorite way is to start by using a particular exercise to provide a window into each partner’s psyche.

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Mastering the Tango of Love

Sue Johnson on Discovering Hidden Moments of Connection

Susan Johnson • No Comments

By Sue Johnson - If you’re going to help a couple get closer and learn to really dance together, whether in bed or anywhere else, the key is helping partners experience bonding moments that open them to becoming emotionally accessible to each other. If you can do that, their bodies will follow, and sex will almost always improve.

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Rethinking the Female Affair

When It Comes to Treating Women Who Cheat, Too Many Therapists Are Making This Mistake

Tammy Nelson • 2 Comments

By Tammy Nelson - Far from being evidence of pathology or marital bankruptcy, a woman’s affair can be a way of expressing a desire for an entirely different self. Sometimes, understanding an affair as an unconscious bid for self-empowerment, relief from bad sex, or a response to a lack of choices or personal freedom is an important first step toward a fuller, more mature selfhood.

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