Tag Archive: anger

Mar 08

Mixed Depression and Anxiety or Bipolar ?

A young man who recently graduated from chiropractic school came in for a second opinion. He has had a many year history of depressive episodes with prominent anxiety symptoms. Is this mixed depression and anxiety? This past summer, he went to see a new psychiatrist to get help with another episode of depression. The psychiatrist started …

Continue reading »

Nov 18

Avoiding Heartbreak in a Relationship

An attractive, intelligent young woman asked me, “Why can’t he show me any love, what is wrong with me?” The two of them have been having a difficult time recently and she was feeling sad about how their relationship had changed in the last several months. She told me that she was in the shower crying …

Continue reading »

Sep 21

It Takes Two to Fight

“I just can’t believe what my mother told me on the phone, she said I was a bad mother, can you believe it? I wasn’t going to put up with that, believe me…” A delightful and pretty feisty mother came in the other day brimming with frustration. We spent the entire session talking about how …

Continue reading »

Oct 08

Controlling Crazy Behavior

Controlling Crazy Behavior

A young man came in and wanted to talk about his friend with bipolar, who, when he gets manic, can become uncontrollable. I said that the idea of controlling dangerous behavior can be problematic. The need to control someone else’s recklessness can lead towards confrontation and anger, which often does not work out well. I thought …

Continue reading »

Jan 18

Through the looking glass 2 – Meeting the Therapist

The last blog posted some three hours ago jumped over this one, much as thoughts are given to do in my head. This, in fact is a description of me meeting the therapist for the first time. My earnest apologies. Maestro, the music if you please. …My wife, caught up in a Maelstrom of hypomania, seeks and …

Continue reading »

Oct 16

Law of Attraction – Creating a Hostile World

law of attraction - anger

The law of attraction is the belief that “like attracts like.” Focusing on positive or negative thoughts can bring about positive or negative results. If you are angry or hostile your world responds with anger or hostility. Wikipedia has this to say about the philosophy that is called the Law of Attraction – “This belief is based …

Continue reading »

Sep 05

Men Get Mad Not Sad

There are hundreds of papers written about why it is that women have a much higher rate of depression than men. A new article published in the journal JAMA Psychiatry (August 28, 2013) suggests that some if not all of that difference may have to do with the fact that men express and experience depression differently. …

Continue reading »

Aug 21

Pay Attention

We need to be noticed and attended to. It is one of the most important psychological needs we have. For several years, I have been lecturing residents in psychiatry at UCSF on the management of people in crisis. One of the topics, is how to work with people who are potentially violent. On an inpatient …

Continue reading »

Aug 18

Emotion Regulation and Bipolar

Researchers from the University of Mannheim investigated brain activity in people at increased risk of bipolar disorder to see if there was something about how these people handled negative emotions that might them be at increased risk of mood cycles. They used a powerful brain imaging technique called functional magnetic resonance imaging that allows researchers …

Continue reading »

Jul 16

Leaving War Behind

I spent many sessions working with a successful entrepreneur to try to help him cope better with stress and depression. His problems seem to be neatly encapsulated in Joseph Campbell’s notion of the Hero. Like all of the heroes in the past, he set out as a young man to make fame and fortune and …

Continue reading »

Apr 25

The Big Fight

How is it that so many couples end up having knock down, drag out fights?  How can seemingly rational people end up saying things that just don’t make any sense? Several people that I’ve seen recently have told me a similar story.  As in every relationship, they have had certain long-standing issues in their relationships, …

Continue reading »

Mar 10

Creative Tension

I was inspired to write today’s post after watching a video sent out by a colleague as her “Valentine’s Day gift” to a group of mental health professionals interested  in women’s issues. The video was from the TED series (strongly recommended) and had to do with the challenge of having a long-term passionate relationship. The …

Continue reading »

Mar 06

A Protest

So many of us have to deal with things that are not fair – depression, unsupporting spouses, financial reversals, weight gain, etcetera, it can be tempting to launch a protest of some kind against the unfairness. These protest actions don’t have to be obvious at all, but they can have powerful effects, nonetheless. A few …

Continue reading »

Mar 06

Hot Button Issues in a Relationship


Dealing with a partner with emotional or psychological issues is tricky. We spent some time today trying to figure out an approach that would work for one woman and her partner. This is what we came up with. It may help you if you are navigating in turbulent waters in your relationship. The link will …

Continue reading »

Feb 08

Tripolar Disorder

For a long time I have been trying to figure out how to convey to the people I work with the view of mental health professionals that a certain type of depression is really a kind of mania, called “mixed mania.” From an “objective” standpoint, this makes a lot of sense. A mixed state generates …

Continue reading »

Jan 26

The Cycle of Disappointment

Today’s post revolves around the universal desire to find one or more other people who is perfectly attuned to our needs, and the resulting cycle of disappointment. A woman we have seen for years continually experiences a strong sense of disappointment and loss because her highly anxious mother was never really able to be attuned …

Continue reading »

Nov 20

What’s the Hurry

It’s been a very busy week for mental health professionals in the Bay Area. The holidays are ramping up. And it has been dark and rainy. Many people are feeling a great deal of stress. Last night, we got a call from a wonderful woman who we’ve been working with for several months. She said …

Continue reading »

Nov 15

Anger and Change: “It’s Wrong” Mentality

“It is just wrong, I can’t accept it, I have to stand up to things that are wrong.” We were talking with a young man who was frustrated because he had to complete a year’s worth of general education requirements before he could graduate with his degree in film. He was very upset, and noted at a …

Continue reading »

Nov 06

Disaster’s Aftermath

The recent hurricane that hit New Jersey and New York reminded us of the research on the aftermath of disaster conducted by a friend and colleague, Kent Harber, PhD. Kent has been very interested in posttraumatic stress disorder, and in particular, the work of Dr. James Pennebaker, on the value of sharing one’s story in …

Continue reading »

Oct 03

Therapists Can Be So Annoying: Feeling Like You’re On Celebrity Roast

Therapists Have you ever found yourself all of a sudden the guest of honor at celebrity roast special. Sometimes that is what it is like being a therapist…. or husband… or wife… employee… boss…. or you name it… What do you do? You probably know that being defensive is not going to work. But how can …

Continue reading »

Older posts «

Fetch more items

%d bloggers like this: