Finances and Relationship Counseling

Do You Profit From Your Relationship?

What happens when we stop putting what’s really important in our lives first? Our relationship with our spouse or family, our hobbies, and our friends? What does it really mean to profit first from your relationship?

Over time our emotional bank accountants get withdrawn and who knows maybe we might even go bankrupt, ouch!

I recently read Profit First by Michael Michalowicz and how he revolutionized small (and big) business practices in helping make them profitable entities. Many people often forget that running a business is similar to running a family.

Profit First suggests that before doing anything (paying bills, upgrading services, etc.) in your business, always take your “profit first” (hence the name).  It’s a different way of thinking and mindset shift.  

Most people think:

Income – Expenses = Profit

Michael suggests:

Income – Profit = Expenses

Think about your own relationship and consider whether or not you take your “profit” first.

  • How often do you prioritize spending time with your spouse over doing the dishes, cleaning, laundry, working, or running errands?
  • How often do you feel drained when you give your all at work to come home to destress, eat and fall asleep after watching TV?   
  • Perhaps you are running around doing things that you feel obligated to do and not what you enjoy.  

None of these behaviors on their own are bad.  The problem becomes when you spend your all and have nothing left over for your relationship.  When it comes to our relationship we are most often giving it the sloppy seconds, who wants that!  That just doesn’t feel good for anyone!

While reading Profit First, it identified 5 bank accounts necessary for your business, and I began thinking about how couples might utilize these bank accounts in their relationship.

  • Income

Have you heard of the saying “pay yourself first”?  Most people pay themselves last after they have spent money on all there expenses and half tos.

If you start by paying your relationship first what do you think the quality of your relationship would be like? What does paying yourself in your relationship look like to you and your spouse?

Maybe first thing when you come home you greet your spouse with a hug or kiss, or first thing in the morning when you wake up, you make your spouse coffee, engage in conversation, take the kids to school because your partner wants to sleep in.

  • Profit

The profit is what you put aside to do fun things in your relationship, whether that’s take a vacation, go out to dinner together, etc.

It is important that your relationship “be rich” and “profit” in order for you and your spouse to be happy. Most importantly the “money” you allot for each account should not be moved to others!

For relationships, this means no canceling plans with your spouse when something else comes up, unless it’s an absolute emergency. While this might seem scary at first, it will help you really get a handle on enriching your relationship.  

  • Operating expenses

This is how you keep your relationship going. It might look like the “Business” of the relationship: organizing meals, scheduled home maintenance, going to and from work, scheduling activities for children, etc.

The most important thing to remember about operating expenses is you should NEVER take these first over your profit. This is where people in business, and relationships, get tripped up. They spend far too much time, energy, and money, on the operating expenses and not enough is put into their profit.

  • Owner’s Compensation

This one is often the most fun for couples because it’s when you put a percentage in every month in order to then give yourself a “bonus” every 3 months. You take half of the money out and spend it on your relationship.  Imagine every 3 months looking forward to a BONUS with your partner or spouse.  How fun!!!  I am planning things in my head right now!

The other half stays in the account for emergencies.  A relationship emergency could be the need to go to couples counseling, you forgot your anniversary and now you have to do something special for you partner.  

  • Taxes

How do you file taxes (jointly or separately)? How do you save up for big purchases of things that you need to pay (taxes, repairs, remodeling, etc.) Since you only do your taxes once yearly and you either get a refund or you have to pay, set up an account where those things will already be taken care of for you from the money you put in. While this might not seem like the most romantic way to go about things, it helps to delineate financial goals, which can often be the number one stressor for couples.

Sounds like a lot? Trust me, it isn’t. When I first started using Profit First for my business, it transformed my business and it’s my hope that approaching your financial and relationship goals will be transformed too.

If you are in business I highly recommend reading Profit First for is true financial meaning and plan, great stuff!

If you’re ready to begin profiting from your relationship and trying out a new approach to connection with your spouse and need a little guidance, don’t hesitate to reach out to Katie at or 954.401.9011.


Katie is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Coral Springs who specializes in affair recovery, marital counseling, and helping couples love again

4 Tips for Affair Recovery During the Holidays

The holidays are here and that can mean a lot of high emotions for some people; sometimes, they have difficulty with their family of origin, like their mom or dad, or maybe a sibling rivalry that just hasn’t ended. Affairs in relationships are even trickier to navigate around the holidays, but there are 4 tips for affair recovery during the holidays. 

For others, they might be going through something in their lives that they don’t really want under a microscope like an affair or possibly the endless barrage of questions about what’s next.  “So, when are you going to get married or, when are you having kids?”

For some couples who are dealing with the aftermath of an affair, the holidays might seem like the last thing on their mind.  The affair might not have been disclosed to anyone, so they might have to act like nothing has changed when inside they’re hurting.  

If the family is aware of the affair, children, in-laws, and other family might demand the couple continue to engage in the status quo of the relationship or “put on a brave face for everyone”.  Either way let’s face it, it’s difficult!

If you’re dealing with the aftermath of an affair during the holidays or know a couple who is, it’s important to remember the following tips:


Whatever the case surrounding their affair, it’s important to set boundaries, and the first step in affair recovery, especially as it pertains to the holiday season.

Perhaps it means only staying at a holiday party for a two hours, rather than staying until the very end to help the host clean up. Perhaps it means no drinking or no work parties as that is where the affair may have occurred.  Perhaps it means a couple doesn’t host this year and rather offer to assist by bringing the side dish to a family member’s house instead.

Don’t Overshare

Sometimes a couple wants to share and tell everyone (especially with family), about what’s happened to them or what’s going on in their lives.  It’s important to be cautious about who you share the information with and how much information is shared. When either part of the couple opens up to family or friends, they’re opening their relationship up to potential negative opinions and judgements, which may or may not be helpful.

Assure there is a clear understanding of whether or not you’ll share and what you will share.  Check in regularly regarding thoughts and feelings about communication with others.

Figure Out What You Need

Think about your relationship as being in the Intensive Care Unit, ICU. Especially when an affair is fresh the couple is treating and managing the symptoms of the affair as they come up, often moment to moment.

If an affair is still in its first year after discovery then a couple might be experiencing the holidays for the first time post affair.  This can bring up a lot of anger, hurt, frustrations, resentment and more.  Family and couple traditions can feel tarnished or no longer special.

It is important to talk about this with one another or work with a therapist trained in helping couples navigate an affair.

Get clear on what both parties need during this time and how to communicate that to one another. Maybe taking some time to be together is helpful or time apart is what is needed. Come to a compromise on what that looks like and help each other honor that, knowing that from moment to moment that may change.  Discuss how you’ll handle any unforeseen events that might come up.

When an affair, an emotional trauma, is fresh, each party needs a lot of self care especially for the partner who is just learning about the affair.  For the partner just learning about the affair this information is brand new as opposed to the partner who was involved in the affair.  The involved partner has been processing the affair over time.  

Recreating a New Relationship Story

One of the important things in affair recovery is that the couple begin to create a new relationship story.  If the couple is ready and has worked through aspects of the affair sometimes it helps to create new rituals and traditions especially during the holiday season.  Helping the couple say goodbye to the old relationship pre-affair and living into a newer relationship that is just the couple’s, post affair.  

The holidays overall bring added and undue stress to most of us.  If you are working through an affair and having difficulty I urge you to seek out a trained professional who can support you through the process.  

Katie Lemieux is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, expert couples counselor and coach

specializing in affair and betrayal recovery with offices in Coral Springs and Fort Lauderdale, FL. If you live or are willing to travel to the area to help heal your relationship reach out to her


affair recovery - technology is hurting your relationship

Stop Your Technology Affair Today

It’s Friday evening, you’re on the couch, watching Netflix with your spouse and your phone buzzes gently next to you on the couch. You glance over and a small smile crosses your lips. “Who’s that?” Your spouse asks. “No one.” You reply, yet you’re itching to pick up the phone.

Now, you’re out at a restaurant, your spouse heads to the bathroom, you pull out your phone and frantically check your notifications: Instagram, Facebook, Twitter. You see your spouse coming back and quickly pocket your phone.

Might as well face it, you’re addicted to your phone. Are you having an affair with your technology?

You’re not alone.

It’s been thought that we check our phones at least 110 times a day, probably way more.

Your guess is as good as mine about how long we’re on our phones each times we check them.

Overuse of technology is a common complaint I hear in my office from couples, heck it is one of my own complaints.

Whether it’s during dinner, a movie, a date, a day out with the kids, you name it, it’s there.

What does all this phone time do to our relationships? How does it impact the quality of our love life? Is it really “harmless”, a victimless crime?

That depends.

For some couples, this isn’t an issue. For most, it is.

The iPhone 8 was released just last week and people are already plotting and planning on how to get it. I mean do you really need a new phone? What else could you do with the $700, of course I say invest in your relationship, but I am sure you already guessed that!

For couples, I always ask:
What are your rules and agreements around technology?
Does your phone or computer have a bed time?
Where does your phone sleep?
When do you have set weekly time that you spend with each other without technology?

Technology can rob relationships of time, presence, intimacy, and emotional connection, to name a few. It’s important to remember that staying overly connected to technology, when in the presence of your spouse or partner, is a way to avoid communication and connection.

When we think about the amount of time we invest in technology and checking our cell phones, our E-Mail, text messages, playing games on our phone, it’s little wonder there’s no time left for meaningful connection.

What we invest into getting the latest gadget or toy, we take away from investing in our relationship. (Check out my video on How Investing In Your Relationship Can Go A Long Way to see what I mean).

For couples who are struggling with getting the technology mistress out of their relationship, you might be wondering what exactly you can do to achieve that goal.

Set Boundaries

These aren’t just for other people! Boundaries around certain activities are just as helpful as setting boundaries with individuals in your life. Get some boundaries around technology. Putting your phone to bed, on silent, shutting it off or even stopping the notification dings, rings and bings helps if you jump every time your phone does. You need to recondition yourself.

Schedule It

I’m a huge proponent of scheduling your time and scheduling it wisely. We all get the same 86,400 seconds every day (go ahead Google it that is how many seconds in 24 hours; I Google’d it myself). They will be spent whether we plan them or not, they will replenish but we can never get them back. How are you spending your 86,400?

If you know you need to work with your phone or laptop for an extended period of time, schedule it for times when it won’t interfere with family time, add breaks in between working and put your technology to bed.

Get Present

Staying in the present moment is so important for couples. Mindfulness (Check out Everyday Mindfulness here) is a buzzword as of late, yet what does it really mean?

It means being fully present in the moment (bye bye, multitasking) without passing judgement on the situation. What does that mean for your relationship and technology? Leave the phone at home! Don’t worry if that would have made a great Instagram picture. Stay present and enjoy the moment for what it is; the memory will last longer that way.

Looking to end your affair with technology? I’m here to help. Feel free to give me a call to further explore the possibilities of getting your relationship unplugged at 954.401.9011 or E-Mail me at

3 Reasons Why a Romance Novel Will Help Your Relationship

Fabio made them famous. Or is it the other way around?

You know what I’m talking about: Romance Novels, no ladies I am not talking about the “Fifty Shades of Grey” although that can work wonders for your intimate life.  

Chances are you’ve seen a romance novel as you’ve strolled by your local bookstore, scrolled online, or perhaps you have one by your bedside.

Maybe they’re a guilty pleasure.  

In addition to business books, I enjoy some “rom com” from time to time but usually in the form of a movie.  I have to be in the mood to get really sappy.   

Romance novels often get a bad reputation among book lovers and the general public alike, criticized for the surreality of the situations and humorous descriptions.

Yet sometimes, a romance novel could be exactly what your relationship needs.

  • Romance novels can help couples with mismatched sexual desires get on the same page and in the same mood.

Sexual intimacy is a big part of relationships and for those couples where one, or both partners, have physical touch as a Love Language, sex can be a form of how they show that love.

It’s important to recognize and understand one another’s intimacy needs and to find ways of mutually meeting one another’s needs as well.

  1.     You can get NEW ideas for your own love life

Long term couples often lament in couples counseling about “losing the spark”. After a decade or more of marriage or being together, children, homeownership, and career aspirations (just to name a few of the stressors couples face on a daily basis), some couples just don’t make time for sex anymore.

Through romance novels, there’s hope!  I know it can sound hokey, but hey is what you are doing working?  Just saying… so why not try something new and for many of you reading this, different I am sure!

Find new ways to spice up a part of your relationship which might be feeling bland as of late.

The key here will be an open and honest discussion between both individuals about the quality and frequency of the sexual intimacy in the relationship.

Talk about the words passion, romance, and commitment.  

  • What do each of those words mean to you?  
  • How do you express it?   
  • How do you define it?  
  • What does it look like?  
  • How do you know when you or your partner are showing it?  
  • What would your romance novel read like?
  1.     It gives you a fresh, new and fun perspective

You know I’m all about fun ways couples can get the spark back in their love life, from playing simple games at red lights to having “Adventure Night”, a favorite in my relationship.

With Romance Novel Month, I encourage you to pick up a romance novel from your local bookstore and read a bit of it with your partner, even if just for a few good chuckles.

If you want to take things a step further, if you’re both willing, act out one of the scenes and see where that takes you or write your own romance novel.  You can write it together or separately where the 2 of you are the characters.  

Kind of fun, silly, sexy… whatever spice it up, enjoy!

Not in the mood to read? Check out a romantic comedy, like The Big Sick, and talk about each of the characters and what romance meant to them.

If you and your partner are looking for ways to reconnect and communicate better, around your sexual intimacy or more, I’m just a phone call or click away to help at 954.401.9011 or

What’s a “Blended Family”?

And what to do if you are one

Are you someone who has kids and is about to get into a relationship with someone else who has kids?

Are you a person with no children who is getting married to someone with children and you are about to be a step-parent?

One question I often get asked about is how to parent when you’ve got a blended family.

If the term “blended family” makes you go hmmm…. a blended family is when one or more parent brings a child or children from a previous relationship or marriage into the current one.

For some blended family it’s just a natural extension of their current family.

For others, a blended family can be a rather bumpy road to travel.

If you’re part of the dyad leading a blended family and you haven’t quite found your groove, keep these 3 tips in mind for a bit smoother journey to a happy family life.

How You Raise Your Children vs. How Your Partner Raises Theirs

No matter what situation you find yourself in bringing your own kids into the family or suddenly becoming an overnight parent keep in mind the difference in your parenting styles, beliefs and philosophies.

Couples counseling although seen far too often as something to seek out when a couple is having problems is actually a GREAT tool (of course if done with the right therapist, one who is trained in working with couples) to learn how to communicate about some of these differences in parenting styles.

For those couples who haven’t had the opportunity to discuss differences of opinion on certain topics prior to blending their families, it can be a bit jarring the first time a major blow up occurs.

Worry not!

Growing pains can be part of the process.  If you enter the conversation about your difference coming from a position of curiosity and a desire to understand your partner that will help the conversation for sure!

Parent Your Own Children or Co-Parent?

What Are Your Roles?

I often say that relationships are a business and that figuring out who is responsible for what will make a world of difference when it comes to the happiness and health of your relationship.

Don’t we all perform a little bit better in our lives when we know what’s expected of us?

Agreeing on how responsibilities will be shared can save couples a lot of trouble in the long wrong because things won’t get left undone and no one will feel overwhelmed with all the work.

In blended families, parenting is no different.

You and your partner will need to decide whether you will parent your own children or co-parent and what your roles will look like in either situation.

And no matter what… back each other up especially in front of the kids.  I see far too many couples argue about the parenting conflicts in front of the kids.  This creates a whole other set of issues.  

If you disagree, that’s okay, do that in private, away from the kids.  

Build a Relationship

You can’t speak for your child and you can’t speak for your partner.

It’s important that each adult build and create their own special relationship with each child and don’t try to force it.

Your children, will do better with the transition if they feel respected, supported and honored. Allow them space and time to come to their own conclusion about your partner and do your best not to interfere.  

Keep the dialogue open between you and your children, allowing him/her to ask questions.  

The only time you should interfere is if you have concerns for the safety of your child while in the care or company of your partner.

Blended families are unique, and yours is not exception! Still figuring out how to make the above tips work for you and your family?

I’m just a phone call 954.401.9011 or click away at to help you strengthen these skills.

3 Ways You’re Killing the Fireworks

… and don’t even realize it!

Happy Fourth of July!

This is the time of year when summer really gets into full swing for most, unless you are reading this from the other side of the equator, lol.

Days are long, thanks to the summer solstice, the weather’s hot, and the fireworks aren’t the only thing exploding.

Some couples especially couples in longer term relationships struggle to keep the romance alive, which is completely normal.

But did you know that some habits are more likely to kill that summer lovin’ faster than others?

If you or your partner engage in any or or all three of these habits then you might want to take a look at your love life to make sure you’re not killing the fireworks.

  1. You work too much or too little

As a reformed workaholic, believe me when I say, “I get it”. Some of us just love to work.

It might sound a little strange, after all, who really likes to work all the time?

When you are a business owner and just love to create it is an easy trap to fall head over heels and start romancing and spending lots of time with your business rather than your spouse or partner.

Deathbed confessions are ripe with admissions of, “I wish I hadn’t worked so much.”

If you’re a workaholic, chances are something else in your life is taking a back seat and it’s likely your love life or relationship with your partner.

On the flip side, if you work too little, that could be a killer for the mood too.

Doing your fair share of housework, and having interests outside your partner are actually better for the overall satisfaction in your relationship.

It is always a balance between the right amount of individuality and together time.

  1. Your relationship isn’t a priority

When your relationship isn’t a priority, your partner can tell.

Sometimes, it’s work that gets in the way of relationships.

More likely than not, it’s the 100 other things that feel urgent like the leaking toilet, doctors appointments, in laws, trying to have more than 5 hours of sleep, doing the taxes, watering the grass, relaxing, Facebook, I could go on.

Let’s not forget the number 1 time takers and of course priority … kids, that is of course if you have any.

Most couples report a 67% decrease in marital satisfaction after the birth of their children and it doesn’t go back up again until after the children leave home.


Depending on who you ask will get you a variety of answers yet research seems to point to the fact that babies are needy and take attention from both parents, who then neglect their individual and relationship needs.

But there’s hope!

My rule of thumb and what I tell all the couples that I work with is that you have to make your RELATIONSHIP the number 1 priority over everything else.

I know I hear the gasping over there and the “but what about my kids they are the most important.”

Keep reading…

I ask the couples I work with:

  • Will you forget to bathe, dress or feed your child?
  • Will your forget to pick him up from school?
  • Will you forget to take her to the doctor?
  • Will you forget to spend time doing something fun with your kids?

You probably answered, “no”.  That is exactly the reason your relationship needs to be the priority you are NOT going to forget to be a loving, great parent to your child.

Will you forget to be a loving and caring spouse or partner if you don’t make your relationship a priority… yes.

I tell parents, the best thing you can do for your children is have a loving and healthy relationship whether you are together or not.

Before you read the rest of this, do me a favor and try this fun experiment CLICK HERE and see if you pass the test in #3.

Which leads to…

  1. You’re not present

How many times do you look at your phone when you’re in the presence of your spouse or partner?

This little convenient electronic which today makes up our lives feels more like a hand held mistress sometimes taking time and attention away from our relationships ( I say relationship”s” because I see this everywhere in all relationships).

Don’t worry, we all get distracted with our phone sometimes but it is important to set some firm boundaries around it.

When your partner isn’t your priority and you’ve got other things on your mind, like work or chores, or your social life, your relationship takes a hit.

I mean would you pull it out on a job interview, while you are being presented an award, during sex?   Just saying… put it away, give your spouse your full presence and see what happens.

There is this great quote I have seen before,  “being listened to is so close to being loved that most people cannot tell the difference.”  ~

Think about a time when you were sharing something with someone and they were so right there with you.  It probably felt really good.  Give that to your partner or spouse.

Mindfulness is a wonderful tool we can all use when we find ourselves distracted, no matter where we are in life.

By focusing on the here and now, we can more fully experience what life has to offer and that includes our relationships.

So there you have it, the 3 ways you’re killing the fireworks in your relationship.

Do any of these sound familiar?  Then don’t hesitate to give me a call so you can put that spark back in your love life today. I’m just a phone call away 954-401-9011.

Fill out my online form.

LGBTQ, Are Your Children Legally Yours?

If you haven’t already seen the picture of the Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau celebrating and honoring LBGTQ people and couples, #Pride2017 in Toronto over this weekend.

As the month of June, which among many things is Gay Pride Month, comes to a close, I’m reminded of the importance of knowing your parental rights as same sex parent.

Divorce for LGBTQ couples can sometimes be a little trickier than you might expect.

Friend and Family Law Attorney Radoyka “Roe” Minaya specializes in family law for LGBTQ families and shares how when children are involved, it’s especially important to know your rights as a parent.

Roe has both knowledge and personal experience on this topic area which makes her my go to gal on this subject.

Every state is different when it comes to parental rights and in Florida, same sex parental rights are still a little unclear.

As of 2016, birth certificates didn’t allow for same sex individuals to be listed as the other parent under the “Mother” or “Father” title.

While this is changing to the more neutral “Parent 1” and “Parent 2”, it was difficult when same sex parents chose to separate because usually only one parent was listed on the child’s birth certificate.

Roe’s got 3 great tips for same sex couples who want to hold legal guardianship rights to their children.

  1. Get Married!

Now Roe’s isn’t pushing marriage, but if you are going to be together and are committed to your partner it’ll save you a whole lot of hassle if you and your partner decide to separate in the future and children are involved. Getting married allows both parents the same rights.

  1. Adopt Your Child

If you are not the birth parent of the child adopting your child will garner you the same rights as your partner.  Although it’s never fun to think that a child you helped bring into this world and raise won’t be thought of as your own, going through the adoption process will give you the same rights as a biological parent in the case of a separation.

Several steps must be made in order to adopt your child including a Home Study amongst other things.

  1.  Get Educated

Knowledge + Action = Potential Power

Get educated, know your rights, consult Google and definitely consult an attorney.  An attorney who specializes in Family Law and LBGTQ rights can help support you on this journey.

If you identify as a LBGTQ couple, live in the state of Florida and have children or are thinking about children I highly recommend reaching out to Roe Minaya.

For more information on couples counseling in Coral Springs, read more on my Marriage Counseling, Couples Therapy, and Coaching page!

Katie Lemieux, LMFT Coral Springs

10 Questions to Ask Yourself About Dad

Last month in honor of Mother’s Day, I wrote about the lessons learned from mothers and how we choose to incorporate (or reject) those lessons into our own parenting style.

Did you know, we spend 75% more on Mother’s Day than we do Father’s Day? Why are dads getting the short end of the stick when it comes to showing our affection?

Don’t forget Dad!

Dads are often forgotten when we think about parenting. Afterall, who can compete with a “Mother’s Love”?

Yet how many times do we hear, “Well, s/he needed a father figure growing up.”  The word father or dad doesn’t have to be just 1 person.  If you grew up without a dad for whatever reason I am sure you had many father figures.

Although I have 1 dad, I was blessed to have different male role models in my life each of them had a specific importance and taught me so many things.

Dads are usually known for being the “fun” parent, the parent who can fix anything, the disciplinarian or in my house the one who got in trouble.  My grandfather was always being yelled at by my grandmother for wrestling with my brother’s in the house.

Dads also get pegged often as being less emotional.

A Dad’s Love

Just like we learn from our mothers, we also learn from our fathers.

Around Mother’s Day, I asked you to consider your own childhood and how it impacted your views on parenthood.

Let’s take a look at what you learned from dad or the males in your life:

  1. What did you learn about love and relationships from your father?
  2. What things did you want to incorporate into your relationship/marriage/parenting based off your parents?
  3. What things did you not want incorporate?
  4. Rituals and traditions dad brought into our family was…
  5. A good memory that I have dad was…
  6. My dad made me feel special by…
  7. When I think of the word “dad”…
  8. Something my dad did/taught me that is important to me in our parenting is…
  9. Something my dad did that I didn’t like when I was a child was…
  10. An ideal dad or father is…

These questions can be difficult to ask, especially for adult children of abusive parents. Despite the difficulty in asking these questions, it’s important to do because it creates a roadmap for how you parent your own children and engage in a loving, healthy relationship with your partner or spouse.

This Father’s Day, I encourage you to spend a little time reflecting on what a “Father” means to you. What does being fatherly mean to you? How do you incorporate feelings of fatherhood into your own life, whether it’s by supporting your partner or spouse, embracing your role as the father in the family, or being a positive male role model in the lives of children.

If you’re looking to explore more about what it means to you to be a father, I’m just a click or phone call away at or 954.401.9011.

Fill out my online form.
Marriage Counseling Parents

Lessons Learned from Mom

Mothering it’s a hard job, for sure!   Here is a funny Mother’s Day video to make you laugh. Melissa Mohr show’s you how to… well you just gotta watch the video.  

In honor of Mother’s Day, she’s has some words of wisdom for all mom’s because let’s face it; moms are human beings too. Bad Moms (great movie BTW) showed us what life sometimes feels like for moms with ever increasing societal and family demands.

Mother’s Day reminds me of my work as a couples therapist and how we view motherhood through the lens of relationships. Of course many of you reading this maybe grew up without a mother.  Think about the women or people in your life you played a mother role.  We all have many mom type influences.

Depending on your age and background, your own mother may not have had the same opportunities for career advancement you and your daughters do now. There may have even been laws forbidding your mother from working, or extreme societal pressure not to work. It may have been frowned upon for your mother to want relationship counseling or marriage help.Marriage Counseling Parents

Whether you’re married and a mother, in a relationship, or still single, it’s important to think about the lessons learned from your own parents, about what roles and responsibilities you individually were taught to bring to the relationship and conversely, the roles and responsibilities of your partner.

Considering Parenthood…

Some questions I like to ask couples who are parents or considering having children are:

  • What did you learn about love and relationships from your own mother?
  • What things did you want to incorporate into your relationship/marriage/children based off your parents? What things did you not want incorporate?
  • My core beliefs on parenting are…
  • The thing(s) I love MOST about parenting are…
  • The thing(s) I love LEAST about parenting are…
  • One thing I wish we could change about our parenting is….
  • Something my mom did/taught me that is important to me in our parenting is…
  • Something my dad did/taught me that is important to me in our parenting is…
  • Something my mom did that I didn’t like that when I was a child was…
  • Something my dad did that I didn’t like when I was a child was…

In fact, I’ve got a whole worksheet with 25+ questions you and your partner can ask yourselves or one another about your roles in the marriage as well as a parent.

Asking yourself questions about what you liked, and didn’t like, about your parents, their relationship with you as a child, and their relationship with one another gives you an opportunity to examine your parenting and relationship strategies. You may find you’re repeating the very same behavior you swore you’d never do. There’s a reason we laugh at the joke, “Sometimes I open my mouth and my mother comes out!”

Reflecting on your role as a parent and a partner may be a bit jarring at first, especially if you fall into the category of “I didn’t know I was doing that…” And if you read the above two questions and started sweating, that’s why I’m here. I encourage you to review and/or talk about these questions, despite how difficult some of the questions may be to answer, and use those answers to move you and your partner towards growth.

As you reflect on Mother’s Day either as a mother, grandmother, aunt, step-mother, like a mother or the son or daughter of one, use what your momma gave you, good and bad, to achieve the type of of relationship you want and be the type of partner or parent you want.

If you’re struggling to make some positive change, I’m just a phone call or click away at 954.401.9011 and and I’m here to guide you and your partner in your marriage counseling. Talk to you soon!

Fill out my online form.

The Kentucky Derby and Your Marriage

I’m the first one to admit, I’m not much into horse racing, yet there’s something about the Kentucky Derby that is so interesting…

Is it the hats, the roses or the names…

Perhaps it’s the glamorous hats everyone wears which are reminiscent of the fascinators more commonly found in England. It might be the day long event to watch mere seconds of a race. It could be the beautiful rose wreath placed around the winning horse’s neck (Run for the Roses anyone?) Or maybe it’s just the funny names each horse is given, like American Pharoah or Always Dreaming.

While thinking about the Kentucky Derby this year, I found myself wondering the amount of time and energy jockeys dedicate to training for the Kentucky Derby (the most well known of the three races, the Belmont and Preakness Stakes make up the other two of the Triple Crown).

And inevitably, I got to thinking about marriage counseling.

Horse and Home Life

The process of becoming a jockey is lifelong; like an sport, height and weight requirements, in addition to starting at an early age are factors which play predominantly in the jockey’s success. The horse, its temperament, and relationship with the jockey are also contributing factors, much like the saying, “picking a good horse for the race.” For those reading who like to gamble and bet, you might be familiar with the process of picking a racehorse, following the horse’s past wins and losses, style of racing, comfort on a certain track, etc.

How different would our lives be if we devoted the same type of diligence to our marriages? Or whom with whom we chose to have children?

How do you prepare for big moments in your life?

Couples often underestimate the benefits of premarital counseling or How Premarital Questions Can Help You Have a Happy Marriage. Yet marriage counseling is not necessarily only when there are problems or difficulties in the relationship. Healthy couples are always preparing for the next step of relationships, from dating, to the engagement, to marriage, and what happens during the marriage.

Just like the three races of the Triple Crown, relationships go through three phases, from courtship, marriage, to maintenance. Each phase will require different energy, motivation, and responses from the individuals in the relationship. The maintenance required of a relationship with children is much different than that of newlyweds and a new set of skills and resources must be learned and harnessed.

How did you decide to get married? How did you decide to have children? How will you make future decisions about the course of your relationship and family?

Don’t worry about the Derby…

It’s easy to get caught up in the little things; the engagement party, the wedding, the baby shower, etc. It’s only natural. These are big events, with many people in attendance, and we want to make a good impression and have good memories.

I’ll share a little secret with you: these aren’t the only big moments in your life.

The big moments are those in which you’re sitting at dinner and decide that your partner is the one. The day you wake up and feel nothing but joy and happiness with your life, your family, your friends. The time your child shares with you a very large (or small) worry or concern with you and you respond in a kind and supportive way.

These are the big moments in life for which we prepare. If you and your partner need a little help in your marriage to prepare for the next big steps you’ll take, I’m just a phone call or click away at 954.401.9011 and and I’m here to guide you and your partner in your marriage counseling. Talk to you soon!

Fill out my online form.