Thursday, March 15, 2018

Looking for love in all the wrong places

A reader wrote in: “I am 38, single, female, with a relationship track record that looks like a report on the Titanic. I seem to attract nice men, have a good time with them, and then things seem to go to hell. What am I doing wrong?"

We Replied:”Obviously, we need more information to really help you.

1. How long do the relationships last in general?

2.What kind of ‘hell’ breaks loose?

3. Do you see yourself as a controlling person, a helping person, or just a mix of both?”

She replied “My relationships seem to last between 2 months to 8 months. One was longer, but he ended up gay after we dated for a year and a half, so don’t know what to make of that. All hell seems to be a lack of caring for me or even a concern for my needs. I am definitely not a controlling person; I just want someone to love me”.

We dialoged some more with her, and her answers gave us enough incite to proceed with some comments. A relationship, like any living thing, needs time to grow and mature. From our perspective it takes about three months for the relationship to start to show some signs of reality. By this we mean it takes that long before the fa├žade starts to wear off and the real people begin to show up. It is when the good, the bad, and the ugly start to come over the relationship horizon. It takes about another nine months after this for a relationship to move from “I am in love” to a “loving relationship”(click here for our blog on I Love You) During the nine months of being with a person and seeing the ‘good, bad, and ugly” we determine if this is a place we really want to build a future.

In this particular case, it seems the relationships didn’t provide a nurturing place for our reader and thus she ended up feeling used. Our general belief about this case is the woman is trying to fix and heal her partners so they will love her and stay with her. One further conversation with her did show that she had a tendency toward “co-dependence” or the desire to pour more life into others than into her own. The idea is; “let me make you happy, healthy, whole, and then you will love me”. As such she gives so much of herself to the relationship, that she starts to resent the fact they are not reciprocating. Rather than leave this, she turns up more “fix and repair” and thus expects even more “love” in return. She will be clingy, demanding, emotional, and generally hard to get along with as she pours out more of herself and gets little in return.

Questions to ask in this situation:

1. Is my worth based upon this other person’s acceptance of me?

2. Am I prioritizing my life or am I second to others?

3. If I really believe I can fix this person, why am I always dating such broken people?

If you see yourself with this problem or have been in similar situations, please comment on this so we can all share together. What are your thoughts? Email us at or comment below. If you want to be a follower of the blog, click on the Followers box on the left of the post. The blog is also on Twitter at  We also provide internet counseling by Skype or phone. Email us if we can help. 

My book Forever Yours depicts a long term relationships and some of the intricacies involved in this process. Click Here for more information.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018


Contentment is often viewed as settling for what is and not working toward a better objective. St. Paul, in the fourth chapter of his letter to Phillipians, writes from a very difficult situation. The Romans have him in jail, the Jews want him dead and he can't even get some books from the local congregation he started. Basically it is a bad time, yet he writes to the church: "Whatever place I find myself in, there I am content." 

Obviously he isn't happy with the circumstance, but he chooses to view the situation from a larger perspective and not be caught up in the feeling of a victim. In relationships we often find ourselves in places we my not describe as happy, but what good does it do if we just get angry and play the victim. I see content as follows:








Experience shows the ego loves to go to the role of victim and then defend itself by either being depressed or angry, which never provides anything but more complications. Paul was able to see a larger picture and trusted the current circumstance would pass and the journey he was on would continue to a higher purpose. 

In relationships we have to see the higher purpose of being together and not focus on the momentary discomforts, which often come into play. The bottom line is, we can either complain and be a victim or learn to play until we win. It is a choice, just as every decision we make during our journey. Be content, not a victim and play until you win!

Any thoughts? Share them with us in the comments section or write us at Join the blog by becoming a Follower in the box on the right and we will send you a note every time we have a new post. For more information on our counseling go to NYCCC.ORG

If interested in a faith based approach to counseling see my book Inner Space (click here).

Monday, January 15, 2018


Over the years, as counselors, we have seen many relationships with one common problem: the inability to communicate. 

Communication with each other is an art of listening rather than debating The old adage is God blessed us with two ears and one mouth for a reason! When we talk more than listen, we are often providing an outlet for our ego to convince the world around us we are right and they are wrong. 

The biggest barrier to good communication is what we call the "finger in the face" approach to sharing opinions. For example, If I say;

"I like football better than Baseball."

and a person replies;

"That is ridiculous. Baseball is a national sport in this country and more people like baseball than stupid football."

The conversation is now over. 

The person who heard my statement has now challenged me and put a finger in my face. I will now try to prove my point and they will try to prove their point and we will cease to communicate as we now become defensive of our position.

We all have opinions on everything and other people will often have different opinions. We don't have to agree, we just need to hear the other persons opinion and respect the differences we share. 

When couples disagree, it is a place of growth rather than a place of conflict. If I like baseball, it is something I have an opinion about and my opinion is simply a perspective I adapted over time. If the other person enjoys football, it is their developed opinion. If we share our differences without trying to change the other persons perspective, then we have a good chance of forming another new opinion or at least growing by having a better understanding of a different opinions. 

We don't have to agree, but it is good to listen to different understandings and then see if we can benefit from this knowledge. If we can't, it is okay, as we can respect our differences and go on with life.

If we use two ears to listen and one mouth to speak, communication will greatly improve.

Any thoughts? Share them with us in the comments section or write us at Join the blog by becoming a Follower in the box on the right and we will send you a note every time we have a new post. For more information on our counseling go to NYCCC.ORG

If interested in a faith based approach to counseling see my book Inner Space (click here).

Monday, January 1, 2018


Every new year brings an abundance of thought about new beginnings. We go over the events of the last year and set goals for the new life before us. Generally we don't achieve all our new goals and sometimes we don't accomplish any of them. The key thing in facing the end of a year and the beginning of a new year is the conscious perspective that all life is evolving and whatever took place in the past was a foundation for all our future.

Many people like to think of new beginnings as a place of escaping from old problems. It is a fact that every new beginning means something has to end. Problem is, we often feel the past is so painful that the future is just too hard to visualize. 
Maybe we need to be like the caterpillar. When they believe they have reached the end of life, the butterfly has just found a new beginning. Let's resolve not to look back on what might have been with regret and negativity; rather let's simply look forward to what will be. 

Have a Happy and joy filled New Year. Any thoughts? Share them with us in the comments section or write us at Join the blog by becoming a Follower in the box on the right and we will send you a note every time we have a new post. For more information on our counseling go to NYCCC.ORG

If interested in a faith based approach to counseling see my book Inner Space (click here).

Monday, October 30, 2017


It has been a while since our last posting as we have been relocating from New York to Florida. We talked about this move for a few years and finally it all came together. While we loved New York and the journey we shared there, this new stage in our lives is exciting and, given it is almost November, much warmer.

We will continue to provide counseling sessions for those who desire, but for now everything will be done on the internet using video sessions. We have about forty clients who are currently using the internet sessions and all agree it is much easier and more convenient than going to a therapist office. For more information go to our website at

The move has been somewhat stressful yet a fantastic time to truly place emphasis on the positive sides of our marriage and commitment to each other. A healthy relationship must be a conscious place of keeping positive energy and interaction.

What are the ingredients for a good relationship?  A partnership in relationship or romance must operate on the assumption that I am not better nor worse than the other person. I am simply an equal. I am equally wonderful and equally screwy as the person I care for. If they act poorly in circumstances, well, so do I. Without a sense of equality, there will be conflict containing a lot of blame and shame.  

What ingredients do I need to pour into this relationship to positively help it to grow?   In our experience, three areas are necessary for a good relationship

1. I feel I am significant to my partner, 
2. I feel I am respected by my partner, 
3. I feel I am a priority to my partner.

If we have a sense these three areas are working in our relationship, then we feel safe and can be vulnerable.  Think about your current or past relationship.  Do you (or did you) feel you are a priority to your partner?   Do they respect you and do they respond to you so you feel you are significant to them?   If you can answer yes to all three, you probably have a very compatible and safe relationship. If you don’t have these positive ingredients, then you most likely have left that relationship, or if you are still in it, it is probably not the safest place for your emotional stability.  
 So how do I establish a relationship that reflects these ingredients?  Simple; make a conscious choice to make my partner feel significant, respected, and a priority.   

The core understanding to any significant relationship is this , “the only person I have control over in the relationship is myself”.   I may desire my significant other to be different, but I cannot force them to change or line up with my expectations

Likewise, I cannot expect them to provide me a sense of respect, significance, or prioritization. However, I do have the ability to provide these core ingredients for them. If both parties are working to consciously provide respect, significance and prioritization to the other partner, then we will have harmonious relationship. 

If I am working to provide this for my partner, but they are not reciprocating, then I have to make a choice if I want to be in the relationship (see our blog on Choices).  In a relationship, which does not reflect a mutuality of respect, significance and priority, there will be an atmosphere of conflict in which both parties try to win an argument in order to establish their place of significance, respect , or priority

 Think about this, do you have a lot of arguments but most of the time you can’t remember what you were arguing about during the conflict?   If so, then there is a very strong chance one or both of the parties in the relationship is feeling disrespected, insignificant, or non-prioritized

If this is the case, remember, the only person you can change in the relationship is ……… you!   Share your thoughts or become a follower to the blog so we can send other information directly.  If this helps you, tell others. If it doesn’t  or if you have other topics you want to discuss, tell us.  Email us click here

 Dr. T and Dr. Jan.