Monday, December 1, 2008

Remarriage/ Blended Families/ Yours, Mine & Ours

If just thinking about the holidays is stressful, imagine the added pressure inherent in blended families. Where and with whom are the children spending which holiday with? Who celebrates what and when? How do you decide? What do the children want and need? Are they old enough to decide? Are the ex-spouses cooperative? How about extended family, like the grandparents, in-laws, etc? If just thinking about all this makes your head spin, you are not alone.

60% of second marriages end in divorce and it is frequently the family issues involved, especially dealing with the children, that make or break the relationship. Although re-marriage holds the promise of new happiness and second chances, it is also tainted with issues of loss and fear. Divorce evokes feelings of anger, disappointment, failure and resentment and often second marriages are contaminated by the residual emotional turmoil each partner brings with them. Not only do the adults face their individual challenges, but the children are often in turmoil and have a hard time accepting their parents new partners and offspring.

Couples facing these issues benefit tremendously from professional help. Anticipating the numerous challenges that will inevitably arise, learning to communicate, understanding each others feelings and conflicts as well as how the children are affected leads to greater success in making it all work. Having an objective trained counselor with extensive experience in this area provide guidance and support is often crucial to everyone’s well being.

With almost 20 years of experience as a clinical social worker/psychotherapist and a unique understanding of blended family issues, I offer individual, couple and family sessions as well as groups addressing specific issues facing this population. If any of this touches you, please contact me for a consultation to see if I may be of help to you and your family.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Procrastination by Karen Solomon

I have been reading other therapist's blogs recently and have been inspired by their wisdom, sharing and writing skills. Having created a blog account, but not written anything so far, I realized how I occasionally struggle with procrastination. More often than not, I am a do it asap person because I fear if I don't tend to things immediately they might not get done. (A healthy defense I might add). So, when I do postpone a job, it is a signal that something is going on for me. Fear of failure comes to mind, but more importantly since you can't really fail at blogging, is fear of not being good enough. This has been a recurrent theme in my life and has probably interfered with my taking on some potentially rewarding challenges. Suggestions that I not aim for perfection and "just do it" have been very helpful. Being honest about my struggles is usually very helpful as well and hopefully, may benefit others. I realize that when I anticipate having great difficulty accomplishing a task, I postpone getting to it, often resulting in a self fulfilling prophecy as waiting too long just adds more pressure. The irony is once I begin, I feel sooo much better and when I have finished, what a sense of satisfaction I hope this has touched some others; I feel much better!