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The Exhausted Woman
with Christine Hammond, MS, LMHC

General

Before Marrying Again… Ask These Questions

The first marriage ended in divorce. The second one is going to be different. But how can a person be sure that they are not making another mistake of a different caliber?

This is a checklist that I use with clients during premarital counseling. It has been developed over the last 15 years spent counseling thousands of couples prior to marriage.

Ask clients to look through the following checklist and check all that...

General

The Frustration of Dealing with Narcissistic In-Laws

Hold on tight and get ready for a roller-coaster of a ride when marrying into a narcissistic family. At first, the Narcissistic Parent (NP) will seem amazingly charming and the concerns the Adult Child (AC) expresses appear to be exaggerations.  But give it some time and everything will change overnight. Here are some points to keep in mind when dealing with NPs:

It all begins with engagement. Casual dating is not that threating to...

General

The Importance of Dating Your Spouse

As a counselor who has worked with over a thousand couples, I’m still shocked by the resistance that comes from a simple suggestion of dating your spouse. After all, it is not a new concept. There are hundreds of books, seminars, conferences, youtube videos, and articles detailing the benefits of regularly dating your spouse.  Yet many still see this as a waste of time, energy and money.

In the beginning, the reason...

Children & Teens

The Danger of Emotionally Deaf Parents

Teenagers are notorious for their emotional mood swings. The extreme reaction of “I love you,” and “I hate you,” (sometimes happening within a few minutes) is enough to drive most parents crazy. To cope, many parents ignore their own emotions in an effort to try to manage their teen. Overtime, this develops into a pattern of parental behavior that makes them appear emotionally deaf.

Think of it in terms of a PTSD-like reaction without...

Children & Teens

The Difference between Obstinate Teenagers vs. Budding Narcissists

Image by Henrietta Harris

It can be difficult to discern the difference between obstinate teenage behavior and a budding narcissist. After all, narcissism cannot be officially diagnosed until a person reaches the age of eighteen. However, the person needs to have demonstrated narcissistic behavior for a period of five years prior to the actual diagnosis. So how can a parent figure out whom they are dealing with?

Here is...

Coping Skills

Hope Is More Powerful Than Fear

“The only thing stronger than fear is hope,” President Snow states in The Hunger Games when he realizes the impact Katniss is having on the districts defecting from him. His attempt to instill fear into the hearts of the districts has been undermined by the hope of freedom. In exchange for a chance to live freely, the people begin to rise up to the point of risking their lives because they finally...

Coping Skills

How Narcissists Use the Courts to Continue Their Abuse


As if the abusive marriage, relationship or business partnership wasn’t bad enough, the narcissist has to escalate the matter by threatening legal action. The legal system becomes an unknowing and unwilling extension of the narcissistic arm reaching out to cause as much damage as possible. Their take no prisoners’ attitude stops at nothing to seek revenge for causing pain over some perceived embarrassment.

Here are eight ways a narcissist uses the legal system...

Coping Skills

Understanding Histrionic Personality Disorder

The word “histrionic” is defined as overly dramatic or emotional but the personality disorder includes overly sexual or provocative behavior.  Interestingly enough a histrionic will see themselves as very sexual even when they are not sexually appealing or physically attractive.  It is almost as if they have rose colored glasses on when they look in the mirror and then take them off when they look at others.

So what is Histrionic?  Well,...

Coping Skills

How to Think Like a Narcissist

Why would anyone want to intentionally think like a narcissist? The way a narcissist thinks is so foreign that in order to predict their next move, a person needs to think like them. This is useful in divorce and civil litigation, contract negotiation, parenting, and spousal dynamics, and team environments. Here are some common ways narcissists view themselves and others.

“I am the smartest, most beautiful, or most powerful person in the room.”...

Coping Skills

Advice from a Friend Going Through Chemo

I must admit that when my friend shared she had cancer, it evoked vast amounts of fear mostly because my understanding was lacking in this area. But now with the advancement of many medications, surgical procedures, types of chemotherapy or radiation, various treatment options, and many cases of cancer survivors, many forms of cancer are no longer as intimidating.

Yet walking through this with my friend for the first time was daunting. While each...