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Handling Unexpected Intimacy Issues

Not a Sex Therapist? No Problem

Stephen Snyder • 1 Comment

By Stephen Snyder - It’s a shame that so many therapists shy away from talking about sex in the consulting room, believing that they don’t have sufficient expertise. The reality is that any well-trained therapist can help clients understand, and in many cases even resolve, sexual problems—simply by using their natural curiosity, some common sense, and a few key tools.

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The Female Therapist's Guide to Treating Men

Understanding Male Language, Attitudes, and Needs

Holly Sweet • 2 Comments

By Holly Sweet - My early experience with male clients soon taught me that working with men was going to present challenges different from those of working with women. From many years of attention to men's language, attitudes, and needs, I've developed a specific approach to working with male clients.

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The Liberating Power of Honesty

What People Don't Know Can Hurt Them. What They Don't Reveal Can Hurt Even More

Frank Pittman • No Comments

By Frank Pittman - When we therapists believe a secret's revelations would be dangerous, the client receives a frightening message about him- or herself and about the world. We may accept our patients and make psychodynamic, systemic or sociological excuses for them, while still conveying that their secret is unacceptable. Thus, while explicitly "supporting" them, we implicitly undermine their sense that they are fundamentally decent, acceptable people.

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The Surprisingly Simple Way to Jump-Start Intimacy

Traditional Approaches Aren't Always the Best Option

Michele Weiner-Davis • No Comments

By Michele Weiner-Davis - When it comes to feeling loved in a marriage, everybody has different requirements. Some people feel loved when their spouses spend time with them. Others feel loved when they've had "good talks." I believe that behavior change often precedes affect or cognitive changes. For many, touch says love like nothing else. Making love is love.

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Helping Parents Rekindle the Erotic Spark

Why Does Parenthood Deliver Such a Fatal Blow to Intimacy?

Esther Perel • No Comments

By Esther Perel - The transition from two to three is one of the most profound challenges a couple will ever face. Family life flourishes in an atmosphere of comfort and consistency. Yet unpredictability, spontaneity, and risk are precisely where eroticism resides. Eros is a force that doesn't like to be constrained. When it settles into repetition, habit, or rules, it touches its death.

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VIDEO: Susan Johnson on the Power of Emotion

The Secret Ingredient in Good Therapy

Susan Johnson • 3 Comments

Emotion is the most important motivating force bringing clients to our offices in the first place. Nevertheless, therapists are often strangely queasy in the presence of strong emotion. In this clip from her 2013 Symposium keynote address, Susan Johnson offers a vivid picture of how we can take full therapeutic advantage of the emotional force field to propel the process of change.

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Case Study: When Couples Therapy Causes Emotional Pain

Coming to Terms with Inflicting Emotional Pain in Order to Provide Good Couples Therapy

Ellyn Bader and Peter Pearson • 4 Comments

We don’t become therapists to inflict emotional pain, but eventually we learn that sadness, anger, shock, and disillusionment can be part and parcel of therapy with couples in serious trouble. Good couples therapy sometimes hurts.

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