Cancer, Chemo and Other Ordeals: Nita’s Story

Do you need some inspiration today? After getting to know Nita, I knew I wanted to share her story with readers at PsychCentral. Through cancer, chemo and other ordeals, Nita has kept moving forward, and her ordeals have been very hard.

I have been profoundly touched by Nita. I hope you find her story helpful too. Read Nita's story at Stop Giving It Away.

Learn more about Stop Giving It Away.

Cherilynn Veland, MSW, LCSW, is a counselor and coach based in Chicago. She has been helping individuals,...
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Are You Afraid to Ask for a Change?

How do I ask for things to change?
This is a popular question and it's one I get asked a lot as a psychotherapist and counselor. A lot of you out there want to make changes or ask for something different in your relationships, but you are too afraid to ask.

Reasons vary but these fears (common as they are) are rooted ultimately in the fear of conflict and confrontation—afraid the person on the other side will get mad, get defensive (and fight), will feel hurt and trigger guilt for the asker.
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Top 10 Annoying In-Law Issues

In-law relationships can be some of the most complicated with tension arising sometimes at every turn. Let me count the ways ...

1. They think they have a right to tell you what to do.

Meddling mothers-in-law or fathers-in-law can do serious damage to any marriage. Just turn on the Lifetime movie network and see for yourself. Meddling is a specific example of boundary crossing. If your mother-in-law has your apartment picked out and your future baby's name too,...
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Are You In A Relationship With An Everyday Sadist?

Could you be in a relationship with an "everyday sadist?"

Someone who has everyday sadism is an average person who not only lacks empathy but enjoys inflicting harm on others. Do you know someone like this? Or, perhaps you interact with sadistic people and don't know it. Here is some information for the psychiatrically curious:

Everyday sadists are people who have what scientists call a Dark Personality. (A lot of people out there actually enjoy making others feel bad. These people have sadistic personalities. So it makes sense that they are out there dating (or marrrying). After all, the best way to inflict pain is to do it to someone who truly cares about you.

What might an everyday sadist look like in your life?
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What Is An Emotional Affair And What To Do About It

Research shows that heterosexual men are much less likely to get upset about emotional affairs than they are about affairs where physical/sexual contact has occurred. Women are more likely to be upset about emotional affairs.

What are emotional affairs? How are they different from regular affairs?

An emotional affair happens when two people develop powerful feelings for each other and develop an intimate relationship. However, the relationship isn't consummated sexually. It is considered an “affair” because...
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Why Won’t My Boyfriend Commit? The One-Foot-Out Guys & One Type of Unequal Partnership

Why won't my boyfriend commit?


You're seeing a great guy—he's everything a girl could ever want. Only problem is, he just can’t commit to anything more serious. He wants to, but the time just isn’t right—“yet.” He's a one-foot-out guy.

Many a wonderful Giveaway Girl has spent years hitched to a guy or partner who will not move forward with her. And it sucks—even more so because these guys seem perfect on the surface. They aren’t mean, they’re tons of fun, they appear to really have their stuff together, and they seem to be going places. But the words “Let’s move this relationship forward—now” will never issue from their lips.

Granted, not all
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What’s Wrong With Me?

My friend's husband is leaving her. He used to have more interest in her and the kids, but then his work and his golf game took over. It was obvious to everyone, including her, that his priorities were misaligned. When he left her, she thought It's me. What's wrong with me?

Then there's Jill. She was laid off from her company after several takeovers. She was already in an industry that was fraught with layoffs, and her stress was compounded when a nasty subgroup of workers went on a Survivor-esque rampage and secretly had her ousted. That made the layoff feel even worse. They were a crazy group of hungry, vain and personality-disordered gossip girls; yet, their rejection and the subsequent ousting left Jill at times wondering, What's wrong with me?

We have all been there—and remember what teens are going through. There's a good reason we have books like Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul and Best Friends for Never.

First comes trust, then comes betrayal
Why does it happen like this? We get treated poorly by someone or something (like a company, a spouse or significant other), and we can't shake this feeling that something could inherently be wrong with us. Positive self-talk and intellectualizing can help, but sometimes they don't.
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What To Do When You Have To Spend Time With Selfish People

I recently spent a lot of time with someone who was incredibly self-centered. It was an awful experience. Here are some examples of annoying behavior I have experienced with selfish people:

1. Dot refuses to say thank you or show appreciation for anything anyone does for her.

2. When Dot is treated to a luxury hotel in Paris, she complains. "What?! The rooms are so small!" or "What's with all the old stuff?! Gross!"

3. Caroline gets up very early in...
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Box Car Willies : One Type of Unequal Partnership

Do You Always End Up Paying The Bills? Boxcar Willies and Unequal Partnerships

My husband and I went to a fabulous wedding where Joan and Bill got married at a typical chandelier dripping, hotel ballroom. The bride and groom looked so happy. People said wonderful things at the toast, they even gave one of them an autographed bat from a Cubs’ player since the couple loved baseball so much.

Upon returning from the honeymoon, Bill quit his...
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Get Better at Standing Your Ground

There are certain weapons that people use against women—what I like to call weapons of mass detriment (WMDs)—that keep women from standing their ground.
WMDs play into women’s insecurities, and they’re highly disrespectful. Many of my clients and friends have had to fight against such tactics at some point in their careers.
How many times have you expressed a strong thought, feeling or desire at work and had someone...
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