Marriage And Family Therapy

[What It Can Do For Your Relationships]


We see a lot of happy couples and families on TV or the internet. We may be envious or jealous of how much love and peace they have in their home, but we do not realize what may be happening in between, or perhaps what has happened in the past. All relationships such as marriage and family will go and may have gone through a lot of trials that have tested the bond within. It is up to the husband and wife or each family member to fight for the relationship they have.

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Exposure Therapy Can Help In An Abusive Relationship That Causes PTSD




A relationship with someone who doesn’t acknowledge your worth is always damaging. However, there are times that even if we already knew the proper things we should do, we tend to stick to the usual activities that harm us in a lot of ways. For example, even if we’re aware that our partner is continuously abusing us, we tend to feel the lack of courage and self-worth to fight against it. That’s because we are afraid of the consequences of the supposed actions we are about to take.


The Intervention

According to Colleen Cira, PsyD., a psychologist “PTSD comes from some type of traumatic event.” Exposure therapy is a psychological technique derived from cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). It mainly focuses on addressing issues of phobias and PTSD. It helps in addressing anxiety disorder and other specific mental illnesses that come from severe cases of psychological, emotional and physical torture. It is a type of therapy that breaks the pattern of fear by exposing the person to a progressively higher amount of fear-inducing stimuli. From there, it creates a step-by-step solution in addressing the level of traumatic impact so the patient can slowly terminate the underlying cause of mental and emotional pain.




“Fear, or getting scared, is an emotion that’s part of our biology as human beings, just like other emotions such as sadness, joy and anger. It serves a purpose that’s crucial to our ability to survive,” says Steve Orma, PsyD, a clinical psychologist. However, the fear and pain that are associated with the traumatic event can be particular. It can come from mental torture, emotional neglect, and physical abuse. The process of exposure therapy can bring back all those unwanted emotions and memories that sometimes make it hard for the patient to handle. In some unfortunate events, both the therapist and the patient might lose track of the procedure and end up making everything worse.


Constant Reminder

It’s important to continue learning about the proper procedure of exposure therapy to avoid additional traumas. This type of therapy is very crucial that if not well assessed, it can no longer support the process of recovery and can somehow make the mental illness worse. So before trying out this type of treatment, make sure that you seek someone who specializes in this kind of intervention and secure information regarding their training and practices. Ask for credentials and research for reviews so you can confidently feel safe in the process.




The Choice Is Yours

For some cases, some people don’t want to recall any of the traumatic experiences they have with their abusive partner. They want to forget about it and erase it in their memory as much as possible. That’s because sometimes it is too much to handle. However, for those people who consider working their fears through exposure therapy, they are at their own risk. The gradual recollection of the past life-changing experiences can be painful and distressful, so they need to assess their selves to be able to know their capability when it comes to tolerating the emotional and psychological trauma.

As much as you want to save your relationship, you need to consider your overall health first. Marc Romano, PsyD suggests to “Focus on yourself and your own happiness and do not compare yourself to others.” There’s no easiest way in addressing an abusive relationship because whether you like it not, it’s not the kind of commitment that you would want to stick with because it doesn’t contribute to your overall development.

Stress In Your Relationship? Tune In To Music



Whether we like or not, there will come a time in our relationship when we’ll experience tons of stressful situations. Sometimes, we won’t even have time to figure out solutions in an instant because our anxiety will probably take over our mental state. In some cases, we only want to relax and forget about everything that flares up our emotional and psychological state. Good thing there’s music because we can always consider it as our sweet escape.


Music Therapy

One of the most comfortable and convenient types of therapy that people tend to use almost every day is music therapy. It has a therapeutic effect that helps in improving the psychological, physical, and emotional functions of the brain. In some fortunate events, it helps in addressing a person’s confused mindset as well as enhancing his human capabilities. It also helps in re-aligning cognitive, emotional, and social issues that people often have difficulties addressing.

“Many people listen to music because they identify with the song’s words and the strong emotions felt. Often people describe that listening to music has a therapeutic effect that impacts their overall mood.” –Abigail Saneholtz, Psy.D




Music And The Mind

Music adds a fundamental aspect of human life. It creates a connection between our mind and body that keeps us healthy in so many ways. It reduces stress level and supports the proper function of our brain and keeps us away from mental illnesses such as anxiety and depression. It improves our psychological strength so we can properly work on our positive aspects such as problem-solving and decision-making. Also, music can give us a total brain workout where we can get a quality of sleep, mental alertness, memory, and mood. Also, it helps in the recovery progression of those people who are experiencing mental or psychological relapses.


Music And The Soul

Music allows us to feel an emotional rejuvenation. With the right tune and category from a wide selection, it can positively change our moods. It gives us a relaxing effect that transforms our feelings into something happy and assertive. With our engaging emotions, we tend to become more aware of our feelings and create neutral connections to other people as well. It contributes to our self-expression and self-confidence that we can use in a day-to-day encounter because it lets us develop a constructive emotional strength that stimulates active retention and appreciation to life.


Music And The Body

We might be surprised at how good we may feel whenever we try to listen to our favorite music. It doesn’t only enhance our emotional and psychological strength but also supports our physical capabilities as well. It somehow contributes to the organization of our nerve cells that is very much useful in maintaining a functioning heart rate. It stimulates the brain by allowing the body to send out endorphins that reduce body pain and certain chronic illnesses. Aside from that, music can give us normal moving genes that can help us in faster recovery.

“While music has long been recognized as an effective form of therapy to provide an outlet for emotions, the notion of using song, sound frequencies and rhythm to treat physical ailments is a relatively new domain.” –Daniel J. Levitin, PhD



“Therapy doesn’t have to be talk-based; there are some modalities, like music therapy.” Hannah Goodman, LMHC said. There’s no wonder music is always a good choice of therapy. It’s convenient, enjoyable, and effective. So next time you feel like there’s a weight on your shoulder, listen to some of Beyonce’s relationship-related music. You’ll not only end up smiling but also singing your heart out as well.

But if the music does not work for you, remember that there are counseling apps, like BetterHelp, for you. You might also want to connect with others who are going through the same thing, through social media sites.

The Advantage Of Emotion-Focused Therapy In Marital Issues




In a relationship, all you need is someone who understands you and accepts you for who you are. You need the kind of commitment where you can become yourself without any judgment and criticism. You embark yourself on the idea of gaining a better development that helps in reshaping your personality, your life, and your future. You need a stable attachment and a secure relationship to regulate yourself so you can establish well-deserved emotional health.

The possibility of knowing yourself begins in recognizing your bad and good emotions. “You definitely can hang on to your unique self, trusting you do know yourself enough, while still leaving space for another person to be their own true selves.” Psychotherapist Sona DeLurgio, PsyD, LMFT explains. With that, there’s a need for identifying your marital attachment to be able to follow or break a cycle that frames and locks your feelings. Fortunately, you experience different types of problems not because of the kinds of feelings you have but preferably with the perception you put into each of your life occurrences. You undergo the process of self-expression where you tend to respond to the impact of the different levels of situations.




Emotion-Focused Therapy

Emotion-focused therapy is common in a couple and family therapy world because it’s not the process of deliberately altering your thoughts or behavior but instead creating a direct contact with your inner experience. It connects with your unique intelligence and targets the rooted perception, thought, and behavior that links to your emotion. It helps in removing competitive patterns of negative feelings and changes it into fresh and invigorating ones. It is the process where you tend to move into a variety of task that is designed to foster psychological and emotional growth. It serves as a tool in assisting your life decisions and current choices. Robin D. Stone, LMHC often says, “The benefits of therapy are vast, including having an objective perspective on happenings in your life, a sounding board for you to talk through options before taking action, a place where you can deepen self-awareness, access resources to support your growth and personal development, and much more.”





The Process Of Intervention

When it comes to damaged emotion, there’s a great significance of experiencing the pain and suffering for you to heal it.  The treatment requires your full attention where it can sometimes make you feel scared, nervous, strange, but excited at the same time. The whole process is both comforting and informative because you can be at the exact moment of having emotional difficulty. You somehow create a connection with your inner thoughts and current emotions. It provides a useful and straightforward way to reduce anger, anxiety, and depression.

The engaging creative process of emotion-focused therapy can work with your desire to achieve the phase of where you want to be. Sometimes, it might require self-criticism for you to be able to accept yourself as a whole. In some instances, you need to be able to determine your weak points and let it stay in your core so you can use it as a guide for your overall development. You need to reinstate hope for yourself and base your judgment using both emotional and mental aspects.

EFT supports a healthy relationship as well as a functioning emotional and mental state. Any emotional and psychological approach is prone to exploration that will eventually become something that will serve us for the better. As Hannah Goodman, LMHC elaborates, “Therapy and couples counseling can drastically improve your relationship issues” Our reactions and responses to the different types of situations in our marriage, in particular, can impact the kind of relationship we want so we need to know how to use it properly.

Finding “A Counseling Near Me”



Are you struggling inside but not sure what to do? Are you searching for help but hesitant about where you should go? Mental health is most of the time ignored. People are too confident with their psychological capacity that they do not give importance to signs which are indicative of problems. Do not be like most people. Take the first step toward a healthy mind.

As you type in “counseling near me,” what are you actually looking for? Do you have someone or something in mind? What are your expectations? If it is your first time to seek professional help, you might be clueless about what to look for? All you have in mind is to get help with the current struggle you are experiencing. Stacy Donn Cristo, LMHC once said, “Many people turn to therapy because they feel as though they are not functioning. Most people come feeling depressed or anxious and fear that they are defective.” That explains it.

What You Should Be Looking For When You Are Searching For “Counseling” Or “A Counselor Near Me”:

  1. Search for someone who offers the help you need. According to The New York Times, when your concern is you are troubled with illnesses such as depression, panic attacks, post-traumatic stress disorder, or obsessive-compulsive disorder, the professional you should be looking for is a psychologist instead of a psychiatrist.
  2. Look for qualifications and credentials. It gives you ease to know that you will be assisted by someone who has extensive experience or knowledge about your case. Look for past experiences and specialties. Take time to read the counselor’s biography and philosophy. Find out if he or she is the person you need. But remember, “Experience and credentials are important, but it’s usually the personality of a therapist and the therapeutic rapport that develops between teen and therapist that is the most important factor of all.” That is according to Kathryn Rudlin, LCSW.
  1. Find a counselor who would not cost you a fortune. Of course, your health is priceless, but that does not mean you have to be financially problematic to get help. Search for a counselor who has a qualification and credibility but at the same time affordable.
  2. Look for online reviews about the counselor and search for previous cases he or she had handled and read through any comments about his or her services. You will definitely know much information from the internet that will help you decide whether you will opt to seek his or her services.
  3. Once you think you have chosen a counselor to help you out, you can visit his or clinic to meet in person. Make an appointment if you may. It will give you an experience of how your counseling sessions will be. Although the first impression is not always the last, your gut can tell you whether you are comfortable with someone or not.

We should all give importance to our mental health that’s why we should seek help once we notice there is something different in our behavior that is affecting how we function every day and how we get along with the people around us.

The internet could provide you with the help you need regarding finding the right counselor. All you have to do is type in “counseling near me,” and the list of counselors nearby will be available for you to browse through.

Always be thorough in choosing the right counseling for you because your mental wellness depends on the help you get. “A good therapist should be open and willing to understand your concerns. If your counselor doesn’t take your concerns seriously or is unwilling to accept feedback, then it’s probably in your best interest to consult with another therapist about it.” Noah Rubinstein, LMFT, LMHC said. As much as possible, be very keen and do not rush onto every counselor you see. Take your time and ascertain your mental wellness.


Types Of Insight Therapy

Most clients in therapy sessions do not only want to recover from a severe mental disorder. There are some of them who aim to achieve a better understanding of themselves. These individuals seek professional help because they want to acquire guidance from experts. They believe that they cannot do it without the support or assistance of therapists. They allow their insights to help them develop into better members of the society.


In this article, our primary focus would be about insight therapy. We will look into the different kinds of this widespread practice used by several professionals all over the world. Many clients are also choosing this method over other forms of therapy. From the name itself, it can be inferred that this kind of treatment has something to do with insights. As we all know, insight pertains to one’s ability to understand and comprehend everything that is going around his surroundings or even his life in general.


Here are the common types of insight therapy:


Client-Centered Therapy


Being good at this can be a challenging task on the part of the therapists because they have to allow the client to lead the conversations. What they would do is ask the starting question and follow the lead of the troubled individual. They will not ask additional inquiries so as not to shift the focus to other aspects. The client is free to talk about anything that goes into his mind, and the therapist must go with the flow. “Therapy offers you a safe place where you can say anything without being judged or criticized. Over time, people usually feel better and see their lives improving.” Dave Kaplowitz, LMFT, CGP said.


Interpersonal Therapy


The primary focus here is the relationship of the client with other persons. It addresses the several issues that a person has with his previous and present relationships. According to this view, an individual suffers from major disorders such as depression and anxiety because of problems in relationships with others. The client is taught how to relate and communicate with everyone around them.


Psychodynamic Therapy


Hannah Goodman, LMHC elaborates that “Psychodynamic therapy is insight oriented. In other words, this approach focuses on helping you gain insight into how your early life experiences” This works exactly like psychoanalysis wherein the primary objective is to identify the cause of the suffering experienced by the client involved. The people behind this practice believe that the present life of a person is a result of all the complexities of his life. Whatever one did in the past will affect his future. The therapists here are expected to know how to handle the different emotional states of their patients.


Gestalt Therapy


This is a form of treatment that focuses on the current situation or present moment. The goal of this therapy is to motivate persons to understand that they must not be afraid of what is going to happen in their lives. The professionals in this field know what to say to prevent a particular client from experiencing suffering because of guilt or negative thoughts. The moment the objective is achieved, the client can start living a happier or better life.

“Therapy is a lot of work and this is important to keep in mind before starting. It’s imperative to understand this so that you can set realistic expectations for yourself.” –Nathaniel Cilley, LMHC.

Solution-Focused Therapy: Dealing With Stressful Financial Matters



One of the primary sources of stress is money. Who doesn’t worry about money? Even 1% of the population which comprises the wealthy still worry about money, differently though. They worry about where to put and how to spend it. But seriously, if money is your problem, then the solution to it is figurable as money is concrete and countable.

You don’t need to be an accountant to figure out how you’re going to solve your financial problems. Sometimes, the answer is already at the back of our head, but you refuse to acknowledge it because it’s too simple or too insignificant to make a difference. However, sometimes, the solution to our problems involves small things like how you need 100 cents to make a dollar.

Ben Martin, Psy.D. once said, “A stressful change in life patterns can trigger a depressive episode. Such stressful events may include a serious loss, a difficult relationship, trauma, or financial problems.” If your main stressor is your finances, there are simple ways where you can gain freedom financially. No, you don’t have to rob a bank. You just have to manage what you already have and organize your thoughts the right way, solution-focused inspired.

Here Are Some Simple Ways You Can Do To Break Free From Money Problems:

Don’t Spend Too Much


Only spend on your necessities, and don’t go to the mall during payday. There’s a big chance you’re going to spend money buying stuff you don’t need. Some may just be a gift for yourself for working so hard or something that may catch your attention like expensive shoes on the shelf.

List Your Payables Beforehand

“Although any stress can take a toll on your health, stress related to financial issues can be especially toxic.” Elizabeth Scott, MS, a wellness coach says. Therefore, by listing all the things you need to pay, you can track whether you have an extra for anything else. It will prevent you from acquiring debts that could be avoided if you just focused.

Avoid Dining Out

Remember that when you are dining out, it makes you pay for the place and services too, which are pricey, so when you know you are tight on a budget, it is better to eat at home and develop your cooking skills.

Don’t Go To The Mall During Sale

When you see a red tag saying it’s 25% off making you save $25 when its original price is $100, don’t buy it because you will end up not saving anything but spending $75. You don’t need the item in the first place.

If you think that you struggle in controlling your impulse, online counseling such as BetterHelp may benefit you. In case you want to learn more about how it will help you, there are reading sources for you.

Don’t Rely On One Income Alone


When you are an employee and earning the minimum wage, there’s a big chance that you will have a hard time having a comfortable life, let alone saving. You don’t want to spend three more decades sitting in front of a computer filling out sheets. Learn about other ways that can help you earn some more. It doesn’t have to be big, but in the long run, you will realize that it is useful. “When it comes to your money, you always have the power to make a difference, so recognize that choices exist for you to improve any financial problem.” Bahareh Talei, Psy.D. said.

Solution-focused therapy aims to find a solution to your problem, and for the examples above, they are pointers on how to solve your issues in managing your finances. When you think about them, they are quite simple and obvious, but that’s entirely the point. Why do most people choose the hard way if they have easy options to take?





Cognitive Behavioral Therapy – Solution For Stress And Anxiety In A Toxic Marriage



There will always be a time that you probably won’t understand the flow of your marriage. “Humans are complex and all of us experience emotions like anger and sadness, so it’s very normal that at some point in the relationship, you will disagree with your partner,” says Maryann W. Mathai, LPCC, LMHC, LPC, NCC. The pressuring stress will eventually give you tons of mental illness that you sometimes won’t even notice. In some instances, you become more focus on deliberately knowing your health condition rather than figuring out ways to stay positive all the time. You consume yourself with worries, fears, loneliness, and agitation. So how can you help yourself in that situation? Well, cognitive behavioral therapy is a great option.


What Is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

Cognitive-behavioral therapy or CBT is a type of psychotherapy that takes a practical and hands-on approach to problem-solving. “Cognitive behavioral therapy, often shortened to CBT, focuses on recognizing negative thought patterns and changing thoughts and behaviors and feelings through concrete skills.” explains Hannah Goodman, LMHC. It treats problems and mental condition by altering dysfunctional emotions and behavior. Though the process takes a short-term approach, it is the only type of therapy that you can perhaps monitor the level of possible improvements. CBT is a direct method of knowing what you think about your problems and encourages you to provide specific solutions on how to address those particular issues. It does not focus on the information you gather from your traumatic life experiences but instead directly assisting your thoughts towards that specific event.




How CBT Works

The primary procedure that CBT uses a lot is the process of “thought tracking.” It is where you tend to list all the automatic thoughts you have and evaluate an event as to where it leads your mental and emotional state. Like for example, your spouse or significant other tends to abuse you, and that traumatic experience is something that drives you to a certain level of depression. CBT will not focus on that specific event but rather lean towards how you use your thoughts in that situation. You may think that you’re unworthy, you deserve the abuse, you’re hopeless or whatever reasons it might be that feeds into your mind that validates the domestic violence.

For many of us, we tend to develop unnoticed thoughts whenever we experience a toxic and devastating type of marital relationship because there are underlying assumptions that support our automatic views. For example, when we feel that we are not worthy of anything, it means something more than that. CBT tries to go deeper into that assumption as to why we devalue ourselves. In further progression, the therapy makes us think about the specific things we thought about ourselves and why we tend to set those ideas into our minds.

CBT becomes so dominant in addressing our mental illness because it catches those thoughts that we are not aware of having. It gives us the purpose of knowing the meaning of our ideas about ourselves and addresses it down until we can get to that core belief, which could be anything from extreme emotional neglect.

“CBT is a relatively brief, skills-focused treatment that has been shown to be effective for a wide variety of mental health issues, including anxiety, depression, anger, social skills deficits, and relational problems.” –Shelby Harris, PsyD, CBSM





Once we can recognize all those automatic thoughts we have and figure out what causes them, we can get to that point of addressing the issue whatever it may be. From there, CBT can assist us in learning ways on how we can tell ourselves to stop thinking about those unwanted thoughts.

Online counseling platforms like, for example, BetterHelp provides Cognitive Behavior Therapy. Rest assured that licensed and professional therapists can help you with your situation.

Music Therapy For Anxiety And Depression

“Let the music heal your soul.” – This statement expresses what music can do. It can heal our soul, and the soul is a profound word to describe what’s inside us. It consists of our thoughts, emotions, aspirations, personalities, and all the things that make us who we are. Anything that disturbs the peace in our soul affects how we function in our everyday lives, so making sure that we are healthy physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually is essential in our happiness and longevity.



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Thou Shall Not Steal: Kleptomania And Psychiatry

Any form of stealing is a crime, may it be from an urgent need, life or death situation, or even for the benefit of the poor (like Robinhood robbing the rich and giving to the poor). What if a person is stealing out of an impulse or anxiety? What if a person has kleptomania? Would the law of man acquit him? What does psychiatry have to say about it?



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