3 Characteristics of Dysfunctional Families

Unspoken Family Rules: Don’t Talk, Don’t Trust, Don’t Feel Rigid family rules and roles develop in dysfunctional families that help maintain the dysfunctional family system and allow family members to continue mistreating each other. Understanding some of the characteristics of dysfunctional families can help us break free of these patterns and rebuild our self-esteem and …

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woman thinking. text reads "codependency and boundaries"

What’s the connection between codependency and boundaries? Below you’ll find a short video that I made discussing the link between codependency and boundaries, some bullet points to reinforce the main ideas, and some additional resources to aid in your understanding and support you in learning to set boundaries. Boundaries For this discussion, it’s important to …

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boy with head in arms. text reads: "shouldn't I be over my painful childhood by now?"

“Why is my childhood still affecting me? Shouldn’t I be over it by now?” Amy, aged 37, asked me at her first therapy session. “I feel like I’m complaining,” she said ashamedly. “I’m sure other people have bigger problems — real problems. I feel silly coming to therapy to talk about getting over painful childhood …

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couple arguing anxiety in codependent relationships

Codependency and anxiety go hand in hand. Codependents tend to worry and take on other people’s feelings and problems. This creates high levels of stress and anxiety that I refer to as “anxious codependency”. In this article you’ll learn about the connection between codependency and anxiety and how to reduce anxiety and manage codependent tendencies …

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woman cleaning perfect kitchen

Do you have unrealistically high expectations? Do you expect perfection from yourself and others? Are you frequently disappointed that things don’t go as planned? Are you exceptionally hard on yourself? Do you feel like no matter what you do, it’s never good enough? These are all signs of that perfectionism. Perfectionists set impossibly high standards …

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woman consoling man

Codependents are often caretakers, which is a great quality—except we tend to do it at our own expense, and often when help isn’t wanted or needed. The result is a codependent pattern of rescuing, resenting, and regretting. Learn to break this pattern and stop rescuing and enabling. Codependent rescuing Rescuing is an unhealthy version of …

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End of year reflection journal prompts

The end of 2021 is finally here! Even though it’s been a difficult year for many of us, it’s useful to reflect on the past – to grieve our losses, notice what we overcame and learned, and acknowledge the positives. When we move on too quickly, we may miss the complexity of how these experiences …

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Coping with the holidays

I’ve gathered all of my resources for coping with the holidays here for easy access. If you’re having a hard time, I hope you’ll find some support and guidance to help you through the challenges that often come with the holidays. Articles Holiday Self-Care: Coping with Stress and Difficult Family Members 6 Things You Can …

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Gratitude during difficult times

Gratitude doesn’t always come easy When times are tough—and you’re feeling discouraged, alone, anxious, or angry—it’s hard to be grateful. We know we’re supposed to feel grateful. It’s Thanksgiving time after all. But you may be having a hard time tapping into gratitude right now.   Perhaps you’re out of work or you dread seeing your …

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