I Want To Have Your Baby…

One hundred years ago, marriage was simply a foregone conclusion. An unmarried person was treated with suspicion. After the advent of effective birth control, human reproduction became unlinked from the act of creating life. It is no accident that the Playboy Ethic and Feminism sprang up at roughly the same time. Men could “play without paying” and women “could have it all – motherhood and career”. Since then, American and Western European men and women found themselves needing to re-invent the wheel when it came to defining their roles in marriage. Just a few years ago, a friend of mine,…

Read More

Pre-Wedding Freak-out II: Parents

As I mentioned in a previous post, family and friends will tend to act-out just prior or even during a wedding. It’s important to remember that a wedding doesn’t join two individuals in marriage; it joins two families and two sets of friends too. Let’s examine this in a bit more detail by looking at the issues that parents often have around weddings. Parental Jealousy We like to think of ourselves as rational human beings. However, if I am honest with myself, occasionally I am far from rational. Sometimes this is a good thing. The strong loving bond between a…

Read More

Preventing Pre-Wedding Family Freak-Out

The thought of a wedding usually brings pictures of joyous couples exchanging vows, mothers joyously weeping into lace handkerchiefs and the couple happily exiting in a shower of rice. However, before the first invitation gets printed, I have seen many brides in my office sobbing hysterically, feeling torn apart by the demands of opposing mothers, fiancés, siblings and friends. Both large questions like: Is a priest or minister going to marry us? Who should we invite? Who gets left out? And seemingly small details like the texture of your table place card paper stock can trigger emotional reactions from family…

Read More

The Problem With The Past- Part II: Couples

As I mentioned in my previous post, our perception of the past can seduce us into believing that our choices are so limited in the present that we are unable to move. Part of what happens in the process of psychotherapy is that we begin seeing the present as just the present. We become freed of our feelings of being trapped by our past. We learn to see our present, not influenced by the lens of past history, but directly and immediately. The same problematic thinking poisons relationships. “Yesterday my partner was a problem. Today my partner did the same…

Read More

The Sleeping Beauty Next to You

Premarital Counseling: Marital Counseling: Relationships: Men: Communication: Assertiveness A Fable for Men: The Sleeping Beauty Next To YouA couple of years ago, I was watching Disney’s version of “Sleeping Beauty” with my daughters. I was struck by the scene where Prince Phillip is held captive in a dungeon by the wicked Sorceress. Phillip sits in the dungeon cell fuming as Maleficent explains that she intends to hold the prince captive until he is 90 years old. Then, he and his horse, old, wasted and broken, will ride off to rescue the Sleeping Beauty. As I watched, I realized that this…

Read More

Love and Justice

Psychotherapy: Couples Counseling: Pre-Marital Counseling: Relationships: Boundaries “If you loved me, you would put up with my drinking.”“If you loved me, you would put up with my sarcasm.”“If you loved me, you would put up with my chronic unemployment.”“If you loved me, you would…” There are quite a number of clients who come into my office confused about how much unconditional love they should bestow upon their partner. Often, they are not aware of a subtle form of emotional blackmail that is being perpetrated upon them. Their partner usually implies or says explicitly that the problem in the relationship would…

Read More

When Is It A Good Time To Get Married?

There isn’t a good time. Marriage is an act of faith. An act of faith takes wisdom and courage. Act wisely and courageously. Relationships: Premarital Counseling For more information, see www.jacobspilman.com.

Read More