Mother’s Day As A Single Mom

Mother’s Day As A Single Mom. As I was the one who asked my husband for a divorce I became a single mom in 1991 raising a three year old and starting a Master’s program in Counseling Psychology. Divorce is never a happy experience. Even when you’re the one who wanted the divorce. There were mixed emotions for me when deriving at that decision. Included in mine were feelings of love for my “ex” as a person and father of my child, but not “in love” feelings, guilt for breaking up the family, and fear as I was becoming a single parent. In my family there was a degree of shame that came along with my decision.  My parents couldn’t even tell extended family members I was divorced for two years.  When we were at family parties when asked where was my husband they would respond “oh, he’s working.”  Of course I felt terrible and brushed it off as that was their problem and tried to not make it mine.

Mother’s Day As A Single Mom

Mother’s Day As A Single Mom. During this period of my life I had to adjust to doing “life” without anyone taking care of me anymore. My father was the first person to step in that role then my husband. Although I was viewed as quite an independent and strong person I felt scared to be on my own and with a with a 3 year-old daughter to boot. The first time I pumped gas into my car as a single mom I felt so liberated and free. I was pampered for most of my life and small things like getting my car washed, oil changes, and gas filled were primarily the job of the men in my life. I exercised learned helplessness in those days and I don’t recommend it. It debilitating and made me feel bad about myself. I was an angry person in those days as I knew there was something I wanted and needed to do but was so busy getting other people’s needs met I neglected ME. In my book, Happy Me Happy We: Six Steps To Know Yourself So You Know What You Want In a Relationship. I share my story of individuating and differentiating, learning to become the individual I was to become and becoming more different from the family that raised me and all relationships.

So during the next 7 years of my single mom life I got to work. Let me share with you now it wasn’t easy but definitely worth the journey. My daughter who is 32 years old has given me the gift of feedback that validates my efforts in making our lives work for the better. The process was one that I encourage anyone to take who believes they want more from their relationship to validate your own beliefs about how you want to live your life and role model for your children what that looks like.

For more information about needing to make changes in your life or adjust what’s not currently working please contact me at (858) 735-1139.

What Phase In Marriage Is Infidelity At High Risk?

What Phase In Marriage Is Infidelity At High Risk? Seems it doesn’t matter if it’s been two, four, or seven years; more studies are finding that whatever year mile marker you’re in can place their toll on a marriage. Whatever recent statistic you choose to accept couples tend to head for divorce after certain periods of their married life. Whether it’s after the two year mark, the four or five year mark, or that infamous 7-year mark – more than double the number are divorced after they meet their relationship peak for whatever their reasons. This period of time is comically referred to as the “seven-year itch.”  There are Four Phases couples go through in relationships.  There is the Honeymoon Stage, the Conflict Stage, the Stability Stage and the Commitment Stage.

What Phase In Marriage Is Infidelity At High Risk?

Remaining in a committed relationship can be incredibly fulfilling and incredibly difficult, even for the healthiest couples. Our definitions of “love” and what it means to be in a satisfying relationship also weighs heavily on our ability to weather the difficult and disconnected times that can actually be a bridge to even deeper levels of intimacy.

People often confuse the rush of excitement and infatuation that characterizes the start of a relationship with true love. They are then disappointed when this rush fades and they encounter serious challenges in the relationship. These challenges, though, can be a doorway into deeper and more satisfying phases of the relationship. Here are the 3 phases of marriage (which build on each other), that emerged during Dr. John Gottman’s research:

1.  The Honeymoon Stage is where you feel the most in love.  For most couples, the beginning of a relationship is the easiest.  Some say it’s like a drug addiction.  This is where you feel the most chemistry. You seem to be on the same page about most issues. Getting along is almost effortless. Some couples describe this as a merging of two people.  The Honeymoon phase typically last about eighteen months to 2 years.  Part of the thrill of falling in love is due to the fact that you see only the best in your partner.

2.  The Conflict Stage – As time goes on, each partner realizes that everything really isn’t perfect. This is the Conflict Stage where power struggles emerge.  It is typically around the 3rd or 4th year as each look at their differences and respond to them where they either predict a happy relationship or continuing struggles. This is the stage where most couples break up or survive.

This is where Couples Counseling comes in.  Marital discord peaks around the 4th year and then starts to taper off.  This period of time may be a combination of dwindling sexual chemistry and adjusting to each other’s idiosyncrasies.  The early years of marriage are when you replace the illusions with reality.  The “good behavior” put on at the beginning of the relationship is now normalized by being “just you” which could include being messy, displaying short temper, and not being as romantic as before.

3.  The Stability Stage is when conflict resolution and coping skills are learned and both have clear boundaries about each other.  The relationship is more balanced and both partner’s are usually getting their needs met and are fairly happy.

4.  The Commitment Stage is where the couple chooses each other consciously deciding they want a future together and whether have children by co-creating or blending families from previous relationships and making a stronger commitment for longevity in their union.

As couples move through these phases over years and decades, life happens. As wonderful as it is to have children, most couples experience a sharp decline in their marital satisfaction during that time. If we live long enough, we’ll lose jobs, face significant set-backs, and dear friends and family will pass on. Our partners will inevitably disappoint and hurt us.

The marker of a good marriage isn’t whether or not the dark times will come (they most certainly will), it’s whether or not the dark times will permanently damage the relationship or whether they’re used to eventually create an even deeper level of commitment, intimacy, and sense of shared purpose.

For more information on prevention and affair recovery contact me at (858) 735-1139.

 

Spring And Infidelity

Spring And Infidelity. Spring is in the air and new beginnings come with the temptation to feel alive. Having affairs can do just that. Those who suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) love Spring and the summer months as exposure to sunshine ultimately allows them to feel happier.  The increased levels of Serotonin enables people to feel more confident and more social

Spring And Infidelity

As a Marriage Counselor and Affair Recovery Specialist, Spring typically jump starts someone’s decision to start an affair.  I’m often asked why people have affairs.  And if more men than women have affairs in general.  As every couple is different with their own set of unique circumstances there is no one size fits all answer to the first question.  Regarding the percentages of males and females cheating the numbers are almost equal.  As an Affair Recovery Specialist, I help couples through the devastation of discovery or disclosure of any kind of infidelity.  Again, there are many reasons why people have affairs.  One reason is they want to feel different and being with someone else meets that objective.  When you’ve been in a long term relationship the feelings of familiarity and security are nice.  The excitement level, however, decreases as familiarity can bring about routine.  Routine is often times boring to say the least.

As an Affair Recovery Specialist, I see first hand how betrayal hurts.  Being cheated on effects the core of our existence as it leaves us with the loss of being significant to our partner. Spring And Infidelity

For those of you who are thinking about starting an affair please be mindful that if and when an affair is discovered the repercussions are grave.  If you are found out the best course of action is not to deny but be forthcoming and admit.  In working with couples throughout my 24 years in practice, admission is ultimately the best thing you can do.  Admission enables you to finally be honest.  With admission affair recovery can lead to being more open and honest about what went wrong and why, as well as what is needed to develop the relationship you both want for moving forward.  Coming clean is the first step to trying to save your marriage/relationship.  Continuing to deny worsen your ability to be honest.

It may sound counterintuitive to admit to your affair after it is discovered but for true healing to occur that is the right first step to affair recovery.  If you are having an affair and want help in disclosing or your affair has just been discovered contact me at (858) 735-139 to ensure you get what you want out of this ordeal.

When Are People Most Likely To Cheat?

When Are People Most Likely To Cheat? There appears to be a rise in infidelity with social media and a plethora of dating/hookup sites available at a click of a switch or a swipe of a hand.  Men and women cheat for many different reasons. Some men are looking for friendships in affairs while some women are looking for affection and vice versa.  As a Marriage Counselor and Affair Recovery Specialist, I’ve come to believe people cheat because sometimes it’s just easier to be different with a different person.  There are many facets of our selves. Infidelity keeps some of those facets alive when others have become numb. There are signs that indicate whether or not a partner is cheating. We often associate summer with flings and fun, but new data shows it’s also the season for something a little more sinister, like the most popular time for cheating.

When Are People Most Likely To Cheat?

When Are People Most Likely To Cheat? Time of year is one sign.  According to Daniel Kruger, evolutionary psychologist, there is a surge in cheating during the summer months as warmer weather enables people to socialize more.  With more exposure to the sun there is an increased level of serotonin where people feel happier.

With sun exposure during those summer months people tend to feel more confident making it easier to kick start the decision to start an affair, allowing them to feel better about their decision. Dr. Kruger states, “increased chances to be unfaithful” during summer months enables the rise of affairs to the fact that people are generally more social in warmer weather.

Travelling makes for possible high risk to cheat.  Being away from your partner makes for convenience and access to having an affair.  Business trips can be stressful and finding a partner for a one night stand is not unusual.

Disharmony within the primary relationship can make infidelity more of a reality than a fantasy.  When couples don’t feel emotionally or physically connected a third person can become a substitute for that loss.

Many people cheat so they can remain in their relationship/marriage.  The reasoning being they want to keep their family together.  Not all people who engage in affairs are disgruntled in their relationship.  Some people just want to feel something different or manage a non physical or emotional disconnect.

For information about when people are more likely to cheat  contact me at (858) 735-1139.

Spring And Infidelity

Spring And Infidelity. Spring is in the air and new beginnings come with the temptation to feel alive. Having affairs can do just that. Those who suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) love Spring and the summer months as exposure to sunshine ultimately allows them to feel happier.  The increased levels of Serotonin enables people to feel more confident and more social

Spring And Infidelity

As a Marriage Counselor and Affair Recovery Specialist, Spring typically jump starts someone’s decision to start an affair.  I’m often asked why people have affairs.  And if more men than women have affairs in general.  As every couple is different with their own set of unique circumstances there is no one size fits all answer to the first question.  Regarding the percentages of males and females cheating the numbers are almost equal.  As an Affair Recovery Specialist, I help couples through the devastation of discovery or disclosure of any kind of infidelity.  Again, there are many reasons why people have affairs.  One reason is they want to feel different and being with someone else meets that objective.  When you’ve been in a long term relationship the feelings of familiarity and security are nice.  The excitement level, however, decreases as familiarity can bring about routine.  Routine is often times boring to say the least.

As an Affair Recovery Specialist, I see first hand how betrayal hurts.  Being cheated on effects the core of our existence as it leaves us with the loss of being significant to our partner. Spring And Infidelity

For those of you who are thinking about starting an affair please be mindful that if and when an affair is discovered the repercussions are grave.  If you are found out the best course of action is not to deny but be forthcoming and admit.  In working with couples throughout my 24 years in practice, admission is ultimately the best thing you can do.  Admission enables you to finally be honest.  With admission affair recovery can lead to being more open and honest about what went wrong and why, as well as what is needed to develop the relationship you both want for moving forward.  Coming clean is the first step to trying to save your marriage/relationship.  Continuing to deny worsen your ability to be honest.

It may sound counterintuitive to admit to your affair after it is discovered but for true healing to occur that is the right first step to affair recovery.  If you are having an affair and want help in disclosing or your affair has just been discovered contact me at (858) 735-139 to ensure you get what you want out of this ordeal.