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Psych Central Professional


General

My Journey in Mindfulness and Meditation


The following article is about my personal journey through the emerging world of mindfulness. Mindfulness has become a recent buzz within therapy and, as a therapist, I find it necessary to explore or test drive, if you will, new techniques before trying them out with my clients. With all of the talk of mindfulness going around, I viewed this as no exception to my usual vetting methods. Mindfulness can be found within the practice of...

Exhaustion

What is Narcissism Awareness Grief (NAG)?


After years of thinking she was dysfunctional, Sam finally embraced the reality of her mother’s narcissism. Her whole life had been filled with feelings of inadequacy, inferiority, self-doubt, shame, and guilt over every little thing she did wrong or was told by her mother was wrong. Now, several therapists later, Sam opened her eyes to the idea that her mother’s perspective was the primary dysfunction, not something inherently within herself.

This revelation resulted in a massive...

General

Narcissism in Mothers – The Reality of the Classic Villainess


Ever wonder what makes Cinderella’s stepmother, Snow White’s stepmother, and Rapunzel’s adopted mother so evil? These classic fairytale characters are easily villainized precisely because their maternal instincts are contrary to those natural for a nurturing mother. Cinderella’s stepmother, for example, is a humiliating narcissistic parent who neglected and snubbed her daughter after Cinderella went through the trauma of losing her father. Snow White’s stepmother is also ruthless - a narcissistic cutthroat parent who is obsessed...

Coping Skills

Understanding the Effects of Old Abuse and How to Conquer It


One of the many ways a person learns to cope with intense trauma or abuse is to dissociate or detach from their immediate environment. For some, this is a natural reaction born out of a survival instinct. For others, it requires effort and practice to shut down their feelings, intentionally ignore surroundings, and disengage entirely from the people around them.

In the case of long-term abuse - whether it be physical, emotional, mental, verbal, financial, spiritual,...

Children & Teens

10 Emotions That Can be Unintentionally Inherited by Children


Amy’s anxiety was through the roof.

She couldn’t remember the last time she felt at peace. Her mind raced obsessively with thoughts of worst-possible outcomes, reliving past hurts over and over, and fortune-telling what everyone around her was thinking. She found herself going to dark places of imagining what would happen if her husband died, if she died, or worse if something happened to one of her kids.

The harder she tried to stop the pattern and...

Children & Teens

10 Essentials of Co-Parenting After a Divorce

If you have been through or are currently facing a divorce, by this point you know the difficulty that comes with the process. However, the unpleasant aspects don’t just disappear once a divorce is finalized. For those with children, now the hard part of co-parenting begins.

Co-parents are defined as the legal guardians or parents of a child. This means that there are many possible combinations of co-parenting pairs. A biological parent with a grandparent guardian,...

General

9 Characteristics of Spiritual Elitism: Narcissism of a Different Variety


Several years ago, I attended a private function at a highly esteemed religious institution (neither the name of the organization nor the type of religion is relevant to this article). I was excited to meet people who possessed an excellent reputation for their excellent work and who were highly esteemed amongst their religious populace. The nature of the engagement allowed the leaders of this institution to be in a more natural environment where they could...

Coping Skills

The 40 Do’s and Don’ts During a Divorce


After counseling hundreds of clients through the divorce process - and having experienced it as a child and adult myself - I have seen the good, the bad, and all the ugly. Too many times in the midst of divorce, unresolved anger takes over a person’s behavior and they become something that they usually are not. This can happen to the nicest of people; no one is free from the temptation of hurting their Soon-To-Be-Ex...

General

Are You a Good Communicator?


At the start of their initial marriage counseling session, I asked Kevin and Karen, “What can I help you with?” With equal amounts of conviction, both of them said communication. As a therapist, I admit that upon hearing this statement I immediately dismiss it. The reasoning is simple: most people who enter marriage counseling struggle with communication or they would have no need for therapy in the first place. It is also an easy scapegoat...

General

Are You a “Helicopter Parent?”


Mindy was told by her teenage daughter in the middle of a rage that she was being a “helicopter parent.” Her daughter was upset that Mindy asked for details about where she was going that night, who was going to be there, and when she would be getting home. For some reason, this standard line of questioning set her daughter into a rant about what a controlling mother she was. Confused by the term “helicopter...