What To Do When You Disagree – COVID

“Jason was so upset!” Cecily’s face on my computer screen looked ashen. My client had requested a private meeting, seeking support for a recent event in her relationship that had filled her with fear and confusion. “On the drive home he just kept repeating, ‘they are...

The Power to Influence

What Is Influence? Influence is not pressure, it’s permission. Influence is a force of our love. It’s granted when we demonstrate that we care more about our relationship than our own ideas and opinions. Even with babies and children, we never have control. If a child...

Neutrality is Invalidation

Invalidation is a form of relational trauma which, over time, harms the brain and nervous system, and also results in the disintegration of any healthy bonds of connection, and dissolution of trust in others. Healing requires the slow, ongoing work of diligent growth...

The Attunement Bridge: Healing from an Affair

John and Shannon brought their tattered marriage to therapy, to see if they could salvage it from an affair. Right away, we discovered they had a deep habitual communication pattern. John had a veneer of sweetness that we decided to call the “chill dude.” He liked to...

What is “The Trauma Triangle” and What It Means for Your Relationships – Unedited

I was interviewed on the Trauma Triangle and What It Means for Your Relationships by Renée Fabian of TheMighty.com. You can read her article here: https://themighty.com/2020/03/trauma-triangle-meaning/ My unedited answers to her interview questions are below. I hope...

The Lifeblood of Love

"Healthy communication is the lifeblood of love. A relationship will only be as good as its communication.”  Gary Smalley Our motivations (or goals) drive our messages, which are also highly driven by the levels of soothing or stress we feel in our...

Is it Love, if I’m left in the “Cookie Jar?”

Thrive Global asked me to answer this question for our Gottman column "Asking For A Friend."  I hope my words for this hurting person can help you or someone you know.  Q: I feel like I’m being “cookie-jarred” in my relationship. Will things ever change? My...

I Thought I Was Completely Over My Ex, But I Keep Thinking of Her. Is That Weird?

Q: My ex-girlfriend and I broke up about a year ago, and I’ve been dating a new woman for the past few months. We’re happy, and my previous relationship is in the past. But I recently found out that my ex is dating someone new, and for some reason, it bothers me....

The Couple Therapist Said Our Problems Were Due to My Trauma: Is It Really All My Fault? Ask Jenny T

Q: Hi, Jenny, In my marriage of 16 years, I’m the one who is the giver.  I’ve given over and over again for the sake of my husband’s career - moving for his sake, and being supportive about how much time away from home his job takes. I’ve also been supportive of...

Listen to Ambient Music for Meditation, Relaxation and Blissful Sleep

I stream an amazing program called Simmer Down on KYRS Thin air community radio 88.1/92.3 FM out of Spokane Washington. The DJ has curated ambient music for the explicit purpose of inducing states of deep relaxation. Every Sunday night I put on my headphones...

Friendships: Should You Let Go of Old Friends if You’ve Grown Apart?

Q: I find I have less and less in common with my longtime friends. I grew up with them, and they’ll always hold a place in my heart, but as we’ve gotten older, we’ve drifted. There’s no doubt we’re in different places in our lives, and just don’t have that much to...

How to Fix Communication Issues with Your Spouse

Q: My husband and I are having communication issues. The main problem is he doesn’t converse with me! Everywhere I read and hear that human connection and bonding is important. He responds “uh huh” to most of my “bids” and I am at a loss as to what to do. I’ve tried...

Successful New Year’s Resolutions Require This . . . . (It May Surprise You.)

The one thing you need for New Year’s resolution success is: Be KIND to yourself.

What To Do When You’ve Been “Ghosted” by Your Best Friend

My best friend of 15 years suddenly started to ghost me. I’d been reaching out every day

Suicidal? Connecting With Your Pain Could Save Your Life

Charlie was in my office yesterday. He was all smiles. So was I. It was a joy to be in his presence. I commended him on the quick and amazing transformation

Self-Care Now To Stiff-Arm Depression Before The Winter Blahs Hit

The days are starting to grow shorter here in the Northwest, and the cold snap in the air can be a fun way to reconnect with the cozier things in life

Dear Psychology of Trauma Class at Whitworth University

It was a total joy to be your guest speaker and present Lifespan Integration Therapy to you last Monday, March 5!

Under Stress We All Regress

When Karen’s face popped up on my computer screen, I sensed a storm was raging in her world.  “How’ve you and your family been doing with the shelter-in-place mandate?” I asked. “Not great!” She fired back.   Frustration, disappointment, and resentment...

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