The Exhausted Woman
with Christine Hammond, MS, LMHC

Coping Skills

7 Steps of Healing from Domestic Violence

The first time Nancy came into counseling she had a hard time looking at her therapist. Embarrassed and ashamed of the bruises on her body, the mental torture from her spouse, and sexual acts he coerced her into doing, she struggled to talk. She believed that she deserved to be treated this way and her actions were causing his rage. Nancy minimized his acts by making excuses for his abusive behavior and blaming herself.

It took...


7 Ways to Improve Your Mental Health Right Now

Marcia’s small business was finally turning a profit. After years of investing long hours from her family and resources she didn’t always have, she began to see the benefit of her hard work. Even though her husband and kids were supportive of the business, the normal demands of an active family life exhausted her.

Marcia would easily work 10 hours a day at her job, run errands for her kids during lunch, dash to a soccer...

Coping Skills

Mommie Dearest: Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers

The 1981 movie, Mommie Dearest, which is based on the autobiography of Joan Crawford, was written by her daughter, Christina Crawford. While there is much speculation as to the truth of her story, other daughters of narcissistic mothers would say the story rings true for them.

The infamous wire hanger scene where Joan rages over a single wire hanger in her daughter’s closet caused a stir with Joan’s physically abusive behavior. Yet, daughters of narcissistic mothers...


12 Ways to Help Someone Dealing with Domestic Violence

It took a while for Matt to realize what was going on with his daughter, Nancy. By 26 years old, Nancy graduated from college, secured a good job, and purchased her first home. She was intelligent, beautiful, talented, and resourceful. So when she met John, who on the surface seemed to match her characteristics, Matt was thrilled and supportive.

But red flags began to appear a few months later. Nancy would bail out of lunches with...


The Cost of Surrendering Self in Exchange for Peace

At 45 years old, Brian did not know who he was or what he wanted. From the outside looking in, he seemed to have it all: money, family, career, and friends. But in reality, life was very different. He managed to have a successful career at job he did not like. His 20 year abusive marriage was devoid of any pleasure or intimacy. His kids followed their mother’s lead and routinely took advantage of him....


10 Things to Transform Your Marriage Today

Sam and Blake have been married for 12 years. Their blended marriage includes a child from a previous relationship for both of them, and two of their own. Both parents have shared custody of their child so scheduling anything can be very difficult depending on the reasonableness of the ex-partners. Between soccer practices, dance classes, and piano lessons, just finding time to come to counseling without the kids was a struggle.

But they did it because...

Coping Skills

10 Ways to Show Support for Someone after a Trauma

As soon as Tracey could get away, she ran. It took nearly all night to find the right moment when her date had finally fallen sufficiently asleep that she could remove his arm off her body. She silently grabbed her clothes from around the room, putting on enough items to leave the apartment. Carefully, she opened the door and took off running in the opposite direction without a thought of where she was headed. After...


Danger Ahead: The Delusional Narcissist

A few days ago, I received a desperate phone call from my dear friend, Angie. Her narcissistic ex-husband texted life-threatening messages to her new husband. This wasn’t the first time she or he had been threatened, however this time the intimidation tactic was specific, graphics, and within the realm of possibility. The police were notified and appropriate protection was put into place to ensure her family’s safety.

But the question remains: How does a narcissist go from appearing so...


Normal Stress Reactions after a Traumatic Event

As I was headed towards a parking lot after leaving a downtown office, I witnessed a woman be struck by a pick-up truck no more than 10 feet in front of me. She walked onto on-coming traffic on a road with a speed limit of 40 mph. The driver did not expect her to be there as there was no crosswalk or intersection in front of him. There was a slight drizzle outside and everyone...

Coping Skills

Difference between PTSD reactions and Borderline Personality Disorder

The first couple of therapy sessions with Trina were rollercoaster rides. One second she was excited about a new job and all of the possibilities it presented. The next she was anxious and overwhelmed from being a caretaker to her mother. Then she was nervous and depressed over the thought that her long-time partner might leave her. Despite several attempts to help her regulate the extremes of her emotional responses, she continued to experience intense...