Is Your Partner Family Obsessed?

Sharing a close bond with your family can be one of the greatest parts of your life. And seeing your partner have closeness with his or her family is often a good indicator about how your future family might operate. Still, can someone be too close with his family…even obsessed? It is one thing to be family oriented, but if your partner is family obsessed it can actually turn into a wedge in your relationship.

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Signs of Depression

holiday depression

There comes a time in everyone’s life where you go through a hard time. Whether you lose your job, go through a bad breakup, or experience a death in the family – it’s normal to feel down sometimes. When feeling bad becomes chronic, however, it might be something more than just a bad day. It could be depression. Depression is nothing to be ashamed of: it might be the result of physiological issues or it could stem from an event. Whatever the cause, it’s important to spot the signs of depression in yourself and others and get help. Things CAN get better.

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5 Stages of a Breakup

surviving breakups

Breakups are painful and the end of a relationship is like a death. Major life shifts often leave us feeling out of control and grappling with ways to feel powerful as we redefine our lives. While a relationship may conclude on good or bad terms, every individual will reach closure in their own way.

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Why Premarital Counseling Should Be on Your To-Do List

wedding planning marriage prep couples counseling san diego couples marry wife husband

Getting engaged is an exciting time! Why come down from Cloud 9 to discuss potential problems, right? Wrong! Now is the perfect time to discuss your needs in the relationship, including how they might be different from your partner’s needs and lead to conflict. You would check the foundation of a house before you buy it, and make repairs as needed before you move in. The same can be said of your marriage – you will have a stronger relationship if you identify and make adjustments before you sign on the dotted line.

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Date Night Advice: Five Strategies to Making it Unforgettable

Date Night Advice: Make Date Night Unforgettable. How to be a good date.

Think about what makes someone come home from a date night and tell their friends, "Wow, that was a great date! I had an awesome time and can’t wait to see them again.” While it might have been the wine or great music, it was most likely something more to it. Things that make a first date truly memorable are often found greater in the mental rather than the physical connections.

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Creative Innovative Date Night Ideas

creative innovative date night ideas

Are you running out of innovative date night ideas? I am here to help! It is always important to change things up in your relationship from time to time, and creative dates can be a great way to see a new side of your partner or reconnect your relationship.

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Conflict Resolution: How to Fix a Fight in a Relationship

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Steps on How to Repair and Pick Up After a Fight

Let’s face it: in the heat of an argument you can say things that are hurtful, passive aggressive, or downright untrue. So can your partner. That’s the bad news. The good news is that it IS possible to pick up after a big blow out and repair your relationship, restoring it to a healthy place.

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Communication Advice: How to Practice Fighting Fair in Your Marriage

emotional affair

From an Emotionally Focused Therapy and Attachment Perspective - By Jen Zajac, IMF

There are some couples who fight explosively and often, and others who seem to rarely get into a heated argument. Perhaps you can recall separate relationships you have been in where each has had a different “fight dynamic”. Regardless of how you define what a fight is, we all at some point encounter conflict, or disagreements, in our relationships. If our emotional needs aren’t attended to, even the small things that get dismissed or “swept under the rug” can develop into larger issues later down the line. Merely avoiding a fight does not resolve conflict.

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How to Cope with Trauma Triggers

trauma triggers strategies

Strategies and Tips

Most of us come out of childhood, or past relationships, with some sort of emotional trauma. It could be an absent or inconsistent parent, a physically abusive boyfriend, or a mother who was really critical. These past hurts will make it more difficult to trust and feel emotionally attached to others in the future. I call these hurts relationship traumas.

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Types of Trauma and Awareness

Types of Trauma and Awareness

From a Relationship and Attachment Perspective - By Jen Zajac IMF

A traumatic experience can be devastating, and can have serious emotional impact on an individual and how they emotionally attach to others. If left untreated, trauma can resurface unexpectedly in many areas of an individual’s life. In my therapy work with couples I see that trauma, in the current relationship or prior to, can cause blocks in bonding and leaves a partner confused about how to repair the bond.

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Vulnerability in Relationships

being loved is getting hurt

Being Loved Means Taking The Risk Of Getting Hurt

We are all human and we long for closeness and connection. In order to get the love we long for, it requires us to step out of our comfort box, take a risk, and possibly encounter getting hurt from time to time. The photo from the #BeingLOVEDIs campaign, created by Jennine Estes MFT, shows a woman expressing that #BeingLOVEDIs getting hurt.

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Dating Long Distance

Dating Long Distance

How to Make it Work

Long distance love can be difficult, but it’s not necessarily a relationship death sentence. If you are really committed to someone, then there are ways to sustain your connection until you can live in the same city. Some couples maintain a long distance relationship for years, especially when professional opportunities don’t make it easy to get close. Here are some ways to stay connected to your loved one even when the miles keep you apart.

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Relationship Advice: How to Stop Snooping

Relationship Advice: How to Stop Snooping

Don't create more distrust in your relationship

The moment you have a suspicion that your spouse is cheating or something just “isn’t right,” you might be tempted to start going through his things. Maybe you scroll through his text messages, or hack into his email. These invasions of privacy, often called “snooping” or “creeping” will probably come back to haunt you. If your partner finds out that you snooped through his stuff, it can just create a bigger issue than you already have. When you lack trust in the relationship, here are some things you can do instead of snooping.

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3 Ways to Stop Being Defensive

stop being defensive

When your partner brings up something that is bothering her in your relationship, it can be easy to put up a wall and start to defend yourself. But what if you took a deep breath and were careful about how you responded? Your partner is being vulnerable when she tells you something that hurt her, so shutting down with defensiveness will only teach her not to open up in the future. Here are some ways that you can learn to stop being defensive and own up to your own feelings and responsibility.

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How to Deal With Fear in Your Relationship

stop being defensive

Overcoming the Obstacles that Keep You Stuck

Many arguments between couples have fear at the heart. Whether it’s fear of abandonment, fear of being rejected, or a fear of falling apart – sometimes you can lash out at the person who you want to keep the closest to you. Even though the fight might look on the surface like it’s about something else, if you look close enough you can often find that some sort of fear is hiding just under the surface. By managing your fears, you can begin to calm the storm that has begun in your relationship and heal the wounds. Here are some tips for how to conquer the fear in your relationship so you can move into a healthy direction.

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