Psych Central

Preparing for a Crisis

By Holly Brown, LMFT

breezeI know this might sound oxymoronic: If a crisis is sudden, how can we prepare?

There are ways to strengthen yourself and your relationships so that you (and they) will bear up better under the strain of a crisis.  Here are some ideas on how to increase your resilience.

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Anger Management for Parents

By Holly Brown, LMFT

potWhy anger management for parents?  Why not just plain anger management?

Because kids can drive you bonkers in the most special of ways.  And by “you”, I also mean “me.”  So here are some ideas of how to cope when your little one (or big one) gets under your skin like nobody else.

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When Family Time Goes Wrong

By Holly Brown, LMFT

I realized after I wrote the title that it sounds like one of those Fox specials (“When Animals Attack!”).  But I’m sticking with it because sometimes family time can feel just that scary.

Okay, maybe not that scary.  But I know for myself that sometimes I feel a little anxious before embarking on a family excursion, especially one with more ambition (you drive farther, you pay higher admission prices, you up the ante because today is going to be SO MUCH FUN!)

And then it’s not.  But maybe it can be salvaged.  Here are some thoughts on how.

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Slut-Shaming: The Psychological Impact On Our Daughters (And Our Sons)

By Holly Brown, LMFT

This blog post has been percolating since the report that Chris Christie himself commissioned “exonerated” him, while doing a character assassination on Bridget Kelly, his former deputy chief of staff (and, it appears, his chosen scapegoat for BridgeGate.  Hell, BridgeGate even has most of “Bridget” right in the name!  Case closed!)

Anyway, Rachel Maddow first pointed out the slut-shaming aspect of the report, which painted Bridget as an unstable, oversexed woman scorned.  And even a Fox news analyst agreed.  And though my daughter is two and still in diapers, the culture in which we live will increasingly  shape who she is and how she sees herself.

So what might the psychological impact be on her, and her cohorts?

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Couples Counseling in the Eleventh Hour

By Holly Brown, LMFT

There are a lot of reasons couples might procrastinate about entering therapy.  It might feel shameful, like an admission they can’t do it on their own.  They might be afraid of what will come out in the room, and more comfortable maintaining some level of denial about just how distressed their relationship is.  They might feel overloaded and overwhelmed with all they have to do in their week, between jobs and kids and other commitments.

They might also hold the belief that if things get really bad, they can just do therapy then.  They might as well wait, they reason.  What difference could it make?

A lot.  And here’s why.

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How To Deal with the Narcissist in Your Life

By Holly Brown, LMFT

In  my previous post, I talked about how to identify the narcissist in your life.  Now it seems only fitting to offer suggestions of how to deal with them.

A caveat: Every suggestion will not apply to every situation.  For example, if it’s your child, you can’t necessarily threaten to end the relationship.  When it’s your spouse with whom you share children, you might also feel more limited than if, say, it’s someone you’re more casually dating.  But hopefully, there will be a little something for everyone.

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Is My Loved One a Narcissist?

By Holly Brown, LMFT

Lately, it feels like I’ve been encountering a lot of narcissism in my professional and personal life.  I’ll be posting a blog on how to deal with narcissists separately, but first, you’ve got to know what (and who) you’re dealing with.

Narcissism, as defined clinically, is different from self-aborption/self-centeredness.  I’ll give you a handy guide on how to spot the narcissists in your life (and in Saturday’s blog, tell you what to do about it.)

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Finding Balance

By Holly Brown, LMFT

jugglingThis feels like an especially relevant topic for me at the moment.  I haven’t written this blog for over a week because I just plum forgot.  Life got away from me.  In trying to juggle so many roles (mother, therapist, writer, wife, blogger…), sometimes things just drop.  I imagine some of you reading feel similarly.

So I offer the following tips with full recognition of just how hard it is to do them.  You know the old saying: Those who can’t do, write mental health blogs.

But maybe they can help you perform your juggling act a bit better.

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The Bachelor: Ruining A Good Fairy Tale

By Holly Brown, LMFT

popcornI’d never watched a season of The Bachelor before.  Truth be told, I didn’t watch much of this one either.  But when I heard about the furor over Juan Pablo a month or so ago, I couldn’t resist tuning in.  And while he struck me as self-absorbed and inauthentic, what’s shocked me the most is the outcry since the finale at his refusal to give a ring along with his final rose.  When did “I like you a lot” become grounds for collective viewer rage?

So while I’m not inclined to defend Juan Pablo, I’m more interested in the controvery he’s inspired and the potential psychology surrounding it.  Read on, and then feel free to disagree.

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Accepting Your Child, As Is

By Holly Brown, LMFT

readingIt’s not an easy proposition.  An essential parenting duty is to teach, and to facilitate growth.  That involves change.  But sometimes, we might find ourselves trying to mold instead, and we might also find our kids fighting back.

What’s the difference between molding and teaching?  And what does it mean to truly  accept your child?  

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