“Without good communication, a relationship is merely a hollow vessel carrying you along on a frustrating journey fraught with the perils of confusion, projection, and misunderstanding.” — Dr. Cherie Carter-Scott
None of us are probably walking into our relationships looking for awkward things to talk about or ways to make our partner cringe. We know the importance of effective communication. We’ve learned it from trial-and-error, or baptism by fire. We’ve attended workshops or retreats. We’ve asked our friends for their input. We may have seen their relationships go up in smoke, along with a few of our own.
“The worst of all deceptions, is self-deception.” — Plato
Have you ever convinced yourself that you’ll never be good enough no matter what you do — so you wind up doing nothing but replacing your motivation with procrastination?
Have you ever found yourself going with the flow (but against your values or moral compass) at work or around your friends or family, even though it leaves you feeling confused or ashamed?
Or have you ever found yourself settling for less than your worth in a relationship, or lying to yourself that you’re authentically happy, when the best you feel is…
“From error to error, one discovers the entire truth.” — Sigmund Freud
You’re attractive, loyal, honest, hardworking and…well, boring. I mean, let’s face it: when you’ve got your life together, some potential partners will see you as rigid and boring because it’s monotonous. When our partner is “too together”, we can set our watch by their predictability. Up by 6 a.m. Home by 6 p.m. Check-in text by 1 p.m. Asleep by 9:30 p.m. Wash. Rinse. Repeat.
Is this a bad thing? Nope. It’s a boring thing.
When you’re seen as stable and predictable, boring always seems to…
“The discoveries of science, the teachings of the heart, and the revelations of the soul all assure us that no human being is ever beyond redemption.” — Gabor Maté
Most of us aren’t in the market of getting into a relationship, only to push our partner away. We probably aren’t in the habit of saying we want to feel a deep connection with others, while doing everything that preaches a different story.
And, most of us usually insist that we’re fine, that our childhood was normal, our home-life is satisfying, and everything is status quo, including our relationships.
“Pain in this life is not avoidable. But the pain we create avoiding pain is avoidable.” — R.D. Laing.
The excitement of a new relationship always has us psyched. We’re sleeping less, we’ve got more energy on reserve and our S.O. is constantly running through our mind.
The novelty of a new relationship can feel like the antidote for just about any ailment we have:
Feeling run down? Nothing beats a massage and a dip in the hot tub with our S.O.
Don’t want to cook tonight? There’s nothing better than takeout and bingeing our favorite video game together.
“Personalities are like impressionistic paintings. At a distance, each person is 'all of a piece’; up close, each is a bewildering complexity of moods, cognitions, and motives.” — Theodore Millon
Did you know there are four recognized types of Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)? If you didn’t know, you’re not alone.
According to the DSM-V (2013), Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is “…a pervasive and chronic pattern of unstable interpersonal relationships, self-image, and affects, and marked impulsivity, beginning in early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts as indicated by five (or more) of the following”:
· Frantic efforts to avoid…
“Out of your vulnerabilities, will come your strength.” — Sigmund Freud
Have you ever heard of a blind spot? It sounds obscure, right? Like something out of an old-school driver’s ed manual.
Even Google pulls up a “blind spot”as being “…an area where a person’s view is obstructed.”
Anyone who’s ever changed lanes thinking the coast-was-clear, only to hear a horn blaring and an obscene finger gesture waving from the driver behind them — has found out the hard way about “blind spots”.
Blind spots are about comfort zones. Ruts. Familiarity. Autopilot. Complacency. And, just like our driving blind spots…
“One can choose to go back toward safety or forward toward growth. Growth must be chosen again and again; fear must be overcome again and again.” — Abraham Maslow
Let me start by saying this: We can’t escape survival mode. We can’t ignore it. We can’t continue denying it’s there because it will ooze into every area of our lives. We can’t rationalize it as a bad day or a bad relationship. We can’t pin it on our ex. OK, maybe we can, but it won’t help our cause. …
“Mental health is not a destination…but a process. It’s about how you drive, not where you’re going.” — Dr. Noam Shpancer
We all have stories of how a friend was callously discarded by their “narc ex” or how a coworker’s mother or brother is a “borderline” because of their impulsive behavior or emotional outbursts. As a whole, we’ve become so desensitized to these type of stories and their attached labels that we find ourselves nodding along in gist.
Social media is no exception. We’re bombarded with “narcissisties” that have catapulted the selfie to a label that’s allegedly diagnostic-worthy, yet gets…
“The more you deliberately seek happiness the more sure you are not to find it. It is therefore far better to take things as they come along, with patience and equanimity.” — Carl Jung
Over the years, I’ve had people ask me if there’s such a thing as being “too close” to someone. Others have asked me if there’s such a thing as being “too detached”.
The short answer: Yes, on both accounts.
I write a lot about emotional unavailability because, well…I’ve experienced it. I get it. I’m shooting from the hip when I talk to others about it because…
Psychologist. Board Certified Behavior Analyst. Certified Trauma & Addictions Specialist. Specializes in BPD, cPTSD & emotional/behavioral addiction.