Category Archives: Relationships

Relationships, Part 61: When Illness Take Over: Put On your Own Oxygen Mask Before Helping Anyone Else

You’ve heard it. You’ve been on airplanes when they go over the safety procedures. They always say put your own oxygen mask on before helping anyone else. I’ve never been in a situation in which the oxygen masks are needed, … Continue reading

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Relationships, Part 60: When Illness Take Over: Create Illness-Free Zones.

If illness has taken over your relationship, there’s plenty that you can do, other than succumb to its evil yourself. Just because your boyfriend wants to get piss-drunk every time you go out, doesn’t mean you have to clean him … Continue reading

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Relationships, Part 59, When Illness Takes Over: Calibrating your Compass

Take a perfectly functional compass and put it in a room with an electromagnet and it will forget which way is north. It’ll point to the magnet because the magnet is exerting a force that it cannot ignore, far more … Continue reading

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Relationships, Part 58: When Illness Take Over: Getting Help

In the last few posts, we’ve been seeing what happens when an illness takes over a relationship. The people in the relationship disappear and the needs of the illness consume everything. If you’re the person with the illness, your job … Continue reading

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The Shrink’s Links: Long Distance Relationships

Bringing you the best of mental health every week. Bringing you the best of mental health every week. Here’s something I bet you didn’t know, I didn’t. Despite what many people believe, research shows: • Couples in long distance relationships … Continue reading

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Relationships, Part 57: When Illness Take Over: Feed the Person, Starve the Illness

I never could keep my Grandmother’s advice straight. It is starve a cold and feed a fever, or feed a cold and starve a fever? It’s just as well that I can’t remember it right; modern medicine discredits the practice … Continue reading

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Relationships, part 56:When Illness Takes Over: Denial

When illness takes over a relationship, it can be tricky. It tries to make you believe it doesn’t exist. It tries to say everything is normal. Often it’s successful. When it’s successful, we call it denial. You don’t have to … Continue reading

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The Shrink’s Links: Car Talk

I was grieved to have learned that Tom Magliozzi, the co-host of Car Talk, recently died. I remember him for his marital advice, as much as I do for what he taught me about cars. Here’s a bit of his … Continue reading

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Relationships, part 55, When Illness Takes Over: Are you a Partner or a Hostage?

Let’s sort this out: Partners have choices. Hostages have to do what they are told. Partners can leave and speak. Hostages are bound and gagged. Partners share power. Hostages have no power. Partners compromise. Hostages adjust. Partners are trusted. Hostages … Continue reading

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Relationships, Part 54: When Illness Take Over: Discerning the Person from the Illness

In my last post, I talked about how an illness can take over a relationship; just as if it moved into the house, kicked the couple out of their bed, ate up all the food in the refrigerator, and didn’t … Continue reading

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Relationships, Part 53: When Illness Take Over

Even when people are firing on all cylinders, relationships can be tricky. When there’s a illness in the mix, they can be impossible. The partner who is sick, disabled, anxious, depressed, or substance dependent deserves special accommodations. You wouldn’t expect … Continue reading

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Relationships, Part 52: Constructive Conflict: Commemorate

If you and your partner succeed in having a difficult conversation and come away with something resolved, there’s one more thing you need to do before you are done. Remember it. You don’t want to have to cover that ground … Continue reading

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