Category: relationships

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INTERSEX – What We All Need to Know

26 May, 2017

posted in help me, relationships, useful resources, wellbeing

Intersex is a general term used for a variety of conditions in which a person is born with a reproductive or sexual anatomy that does not fit the typical definitions of female or male.  The older term for this is hermaphroditism.  It includes around 30 conditions, some of which may be identified at birth, some during puberty, some when people try to conceive, and some are never identified.

Gender, as a binary system (either male or female) is a cultural or social construct.  Some cultures have different interpretations on gender and don’t just see things as male or female.  For example, in Samoa, fa’afafine, in Thailand, kathoeys, and in Native American – the two spirit people.

In Western culture, in the recent past, parents of intersex new-borns were put in a very difficult situation and read more »

Help your teen skate past Depression

20 October, 2016

posted in help me, relationships, research, treatment, useful resources, wellbeing

Adolescent Low Mood and Family Processes

According to Nick Allen (Orygen Youth Health Research Centre, University of Melbourne), family interactions predict depression more strongly, than do peer interactions.  The more that family members have positive interactions with each other, the more likely it is that the adolescent will be protected from depression.

This is great news because it suggests that no matter what storm is happening to your teen outside the home (e.g., bullying, relationship break up, exam stress), when families pull together and create a great family bubble (where their teen enjoys being at home), the teen is less likely to experience depression or more quick to recover. read more »

Hey men get Post-Natal Depression too, you know?

29 September, 2016

posted in couples, help me, relationships, uncategorised, useful resources, wellbeing

One out of 4 fathers experience symptoms of Post-Natal Depression (PND) during the 12 months following the birth of their child.  While most of them may not meet the full criteria for PND, many men report symptoms of depressed mood, low interest in their regular activities, feelings of worthlessness, loss of energy, and fears that their problems will be dismissed or they will be stigmatised in some way (e.g. seen as weak). While PND is more common in mothers (affecting about 15% of women with slightly higher rates for Maori women), often both partners are suffering some symptoms of depression and men often get missed. read more »

Sowing the Seeds of Love

26 May, 2016

posted in couples, relationships, useful resources

In the first year of my relationship with my boyfriend (now husband) I remember thinking, with more than a good dose of smugness, that we had not fought once.  In my naivety I thought this was a sign of a great relationship.  After twenty years of working with couples I have come to realise we were in the ‘honeymoon’ phase.  It was a charade, a time during which couples dance around each other, masking their real selves in an attempt to avoid rejection. read more »

Keep the fire burning – making love last

14 February, 2016

posted in couples, relationships, useful resources

“The fire won’t keep going if you forget to put logs on it guys,” is a catchphrase in our house. It is usually uttered when my husband and I have been out, leaving the children in charge, and we come home to a dead fire and cold house.

And so it is with love. Without fuel, your perfectly flaming fire will turn into a grey pile of cold ashes. What was once hot, hot love is now dead and cold. And we’re surprised. How did this happen? How did that hunk of spunk turn into that person I passed on the way to the loo this morning?

As a couples therapist over the years, I’ve noted some pointers for keeping the love fires burning. Here are my “top-10 logs” for the relationship fire: read more »