Responding to Your Responses

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Last week the Standard-Journal published thoughtful and respectful responses to my last two columns. At first I was a bit self-conscious of the critiques. But since I am a licensed therapist I scheduled some time to talk to myself, and I’m okay now. (Too bad I can’t bill my insurance!)

As these responses were written to appropriately challenge my thoughts in the public forum, I hope it is okay to respond in like manner. I have hoped that my columns would ...

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What Happened to Robin Williams?

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Many of us woke last Tuesday morning to the disturbing news that comedian Robin Williams had taken his life in the throes of depression. Before the day was over members of the media and of this community were trying to make sense out of what we would consider a senseless act.

I was approached by several people, genuinely concerned about the implications of this news for their own well-being, and for those they love. “If anyone as funny as Robin Williams ...

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When Panic Attacks Someone You Love

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Last week we discussed the nature of panic attacks—sudden episodes in which one feels intense emotional and physical sensations associated with a sense of doom or dread. These “attacks” don’t directly result from anything dangerous; the sense of panic is spurred by perceptions that something happening within the body—changes in blood pressure, heart rate or breathing, or even light-headedness—is not right and signals a greater problem or danger.

Panic attacks are so very common that about 10 percent of the adult ...

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When Panic Attacks

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A sudden sense of impending doom; something awful must be happening! Your body doesn’t feel right—heart pumping, breathing fast and difficult, your insides feel like Jell-O. There is no real danger, at least not anything obvious. There must be something wrong with you…

Panic attack—a sudden sense of danger or urgency accompanied by intense physical sensations without any apparent reason—is much more common than you might think. Depending upon the study cited, between eight and twelve percent of Americans have experienced ...

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Judge Not, Lest Ye Be in Big, Big Trouble!

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As I work with couples to help restore love, and individuals to enjoy life more fully, I am wracked by the price we pay for judgment.

“What a jerk!”

“You have no right…”

“They have no idea…”

“I was so dumb.”

“Utah drivers!”

Judgment has many forms but comes down to this: labelling something or someone as good or bad, right or wrong, rather than simply describing what it is. It goes without saying that harsh judgment hurts relationships. But the effects of small, day-to-day judgments ...

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