Blog Items

When geography is the problem - the impact of displacement on intimate relationships

Australians love to travel overseas! We tend to do this in our twenties - see the world, and maybe meet our life partner while we're there. What happens next can be a challenge. Do we live in my partner's country, move back to Australia, or live somewhere else where neither of us are from?

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"We never have sex anymore" - what's going on?

Many couples who have been together for a long time have difficulties in maintaining a healthy sex life. The reasons are many and varied, of course, and can include:-

* changes in body image and sexual confidence due to pregnancy and childbirth

* lack of energy due to the demands of work and parenting

* the challenges of keeping sexual intimacy fresh and exciting with the same person over time

* dissatisfaction in other areas of the relationship that mean one (or both) no longer feel like being intimate, sexually or otherwise.

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Setting healthy limits in your relationship - what gets in the way?

Most of us would agree that it's a good thing to be able to negotiate what is and isn't OK in your relationship. This may include anything from how we behave with other people we may be attracted to, or who may be attracted to us, to the more mundane level of who does what at home (housework, parenting etc). 

But many people find it difficult to either make these agreements in the first place, or once they have been made, to stick with them, or to enforce them when they have been breached.

So what gets in the way?

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Rebuilding trust: where "trust issues" meet "untrustworthiness" in intimate relationships

Trust is integral to intimate relationships - it's not only the foundation on which everything else is built, it is also the glue that holds the relationship together. For many of us, trust is not easily given to another person where we have been let down in the past.

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Why pre-marriage counselling may be the best investment you ever make

It may not seem like the obvious thing to think about - you're in love, everything's wonderful, you or your loved one have popped the question and are sitting in the happy afterglow. If you've only been together a short time, you may still be in the 'honeymoon phase' where everything seems perfect!

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Is unresolved trauma affecting the way you see your partner?

Many of us have experienced interpersonal trauma during our growing up years. Interpersonal trauma is different from other kinds of trauma in some important ways. Traumatic events such as having a car accident or surviving a natural disaster like the bushfires, for example, do not necessarily affect our interpersonal relationships in a negative way, although of course there may be other severe and long-reaching effects from which we need to heal.

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'Emotional brains' versus 'talking heads' in intimate relationships

We are all emotional as well as intellectual beings. Our brains are superbly designed to read and respond rapidly and accurately to emotions - we rely on this for our survival, as well as for connectedness and security. According to neuropsychiatrist Daniel Siegal, when we are emotionally flooded - that is, we have a strong emotional reaction to someone or something - a disconnect takes place between the emotional part of our brain and the part that controls reasoning, planning, reflecting and so on.

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What's ahead for our relationship: looking together at ageing

Ageing isn't for the fainthearted! We can feel very confronted by the physical, cognitive and other changes that accompany getting older. For many people, health issues may intensify or become harder to resolve. 

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How do I help my child with her eating disorder?

Discovering that your child has an eating disorder can be an extremely confusing, frustrating and painful experience. It is an extremely difficult role for parents to play as they feel they need to maintain a strong demeanour in order to provide the support and love necessary in caring for a child with an eating disorder.  Parents often feel distraught, helpless, guilty, defeated, confused and exhausted.

The following list provides recommendations to help parents manage their child’s eating disorder in a way which  promotes their recovery.

Communication

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"Who's in my family?" Coping with blended family dynamics

Who's in my family?

This may seem like a very easy question for families where both parents are together, raising their children under the one roof. For everyone else, though - families headed by a single and/or widowed parent, separated parents, and families where each partner has children from a previous relationship - the answer can be quite complex.

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