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Kathy Marshack News

How Couples Therapy Helps Women Dealing with Alcoholism

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Alcoholism is a disease. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, nearly 14 million Americans—1 in every 13 adults—abuse alcohol or are alcoholic. Abusing alcohol is not only damaging to your health, it can also have devastating effects on relationships with family, friends and coworkers. Studies show that women are less likely to seek help for their addiction to alcohol than men. If your wife or partner is suffering from alcoholism, there is something you can do to help them.

A new study focused on women dealing with alcoholism and how couples therapy could be a powerful option in overcoming their addiction. The women who participated in couples therapy had greater results than those in individual treatment. The social support of a committed spouse or partner seems to have play a role in helping the addict work on their addiction. Click here to view this study in its entirety.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy was used as a treatment in this study. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is designed to help address the way you think. It helps identify faulty and irrational thinking to more constructive, solution-oriented thinking. Click here for more information on the benefits of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

Whether you are a man or a woman, please seek help if you are suffering from an addiction to alcohol. There are many resources available for you. Visit the Alcoholism Recovery section on my website for more information.

What to do when your spouse has ADD?

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

ADD is not something that only affects children. Adult ADD is a common disorder.  Symptoms of ADD include problems with following through on instructions, paying attention, poor listening, disorganization, lack of attention to detail, trouble with tasks that require planning or long-term effort,  easily distracted, or forgetful. In addition, some with ADD can be fidgety, verbally impulsive, unable to wait their turn, and act on impulse regardless of consequences.


If you are married to someone with ADD, it is realistic to expect that there will be additional challenges in your marriage due to your spouse’s disorder. What are some simple things you can do to minimize problems in your marriage?

One key is to be organized. Making lists and keeping an up-to-date schedule will help the spouse with ADD to stay on track. You may have to kindly and tactfully remind them of important details just to keep the information fresh in their mind. We have so many handy organizational tools today. Things like sticky notes, cell phone alarms, and Google Calendar are all good aids to keep your life together organized. Another tip is to keep life simple – avoid filling the home with unnecessary things that will distract them.

Remember that mistakes and miscommunication are all part of life, regardless if ADD is present in your marriage. It is important to understand what your spouse is capable of and what their strengths and weaknesses are. Understanding on your part will help you to gain a greater appreciation for them and their disorder. Professional help may be necessary at times. A marriage counselor or a mental health care professional can help you and your spouse by giving you direction in dealing with one another and the disorder.

For more information, visit ADD in Adults on my website.

Coping Techniques for Divorce

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Statistics show that 40-50% of first marriages end in divorce and it is considered one of the most stressful events in life. Emotional and physical side effects of divorce are becoming more and more common. For instance, depression and anxiety can easily set in and even more serious health problems like cancer and heart disease become a greater risk. The question then becomes, what can help you cope with a divorce?

1. Find a hobby
A hobby can become a pleasant distraction from your thoughts. Choose something that makes you happy and that you can easily turn to when you find yourself going down a negative train of thought.

2. Reorganize
Clean out your home and get rid (or put away) items that will bring up painful reminders of your ex. Instead of "our stuff" replace it with "your stuff." This can sometimes be a slow process, but a healthy one. It can also help you to remember the good, but put away the bad.

3. Make new plans
Planning is a great tool to keep yourself busy and productive. Planning helps you to set goals and reach them which will help promote self-worth and success.

Coping with a divorce is a process and one that cannot be rushed. If you are feeling depressed or anxious, please visit my website for additional coping techniques. I also have information on how to cope with high conflict divorce.

An Inspirational Person Shares Her Gift

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Many of you have had the privilege of meeting my Office Coordinator, Michelle Lathim, in person. Michelle has been diligently working for me for a number of years and has truly been a blessing. I wanted to take this opportunity though to share a little bit about the work Michelle has been doing outside of my office.

For several years, Michelle and her husband Dwight have been volunteering at their local church to organize divorce recovery support groups. With divorce statistics on the rise, Michelle and Dwight recognized that this is a major need in the community. The groups have been a success and have multiplied!

The Lathim’s work was recently recognized by the New Heights Church. Last weekend they were asked to be the Keynote Speakers at the New Heights Navigate Gorge Getaway, a two day retreat for parents of young children who need time to relax and refresh their marriage.

I was thrilled to see that this wonderful opportunity that was extended to Michelle and Dwight. They have a wealth of knowledge and experience to share. I will continue to blog about their future speaking engagements.

A Healthy Brain Equals Healthy Relationships

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

A strong marriage or relationship requires constant and loving attention, which can be hard work under the best circumstances. Lately I’ve focused on the impact of Asperger Syndrome on relationships. But the truth is there are many things such as ADD, anxiety, depression, obsessive tendencies, brain trauma, toxic exposure, and early Alzheimer’s disease  that can seriously sabotage your relationships. I greatly respect the work of Dr. Daniel Amen, who I have spoken of in past blogs. In his recent "Brain in the News" newsletter, he spoke of how brain function has an incredible affect on our relationships. When the brain is functioning properly, things are good, but when it is not, you exhibit traits that could have a negative impact on your relationships.  For example, Dr. Amen mentioned that if you have low activity in the front part of your brain, you will often speak before you think. This type of speech can be hurtful and harmful to your relationship. If this type of behavior sounds familiar, you may need marital counseling and more. You may also need to examine your mental health as individuals. If you are interested in other tips for maintaining a relationship, visit Marriage Counseling - Maintaining a Strong Marriage.

An Asperger Relationship Success Story

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Communicating, connecting, and loving is an integral part to any relationship. What happens, though, to the relationship if one member suffers from Asperger Syndrome? If the person with AS cannot comprehend the interior life of their Neuro-typical partner, then connection is very difficult. Especially since the interior life of an NT consists of how he or she views him or herself in relationship to another. An individual with Asperger Syndrome has a much more difficult time knowing him or herself in relationship to another. Thus the Aspie partner does not realize that a loving relationship requires more than just facts. It requires connecting to the interior life of their loved one and sharing their interior life too. This is what is meant by a reciprocal relationship. An Aspie/Neuro-typical (NT) couple are often described as like two insulated wires wrapped around each other, touching but not connecting. Is that it then? Does the relationship have to end based on the fact that the connection will be extremely difficult? The answer is NO. I recently read a fantastic article entitled, Modern Love - Somewhere Inside - a Path to Empathy, that gives hope to anyone in an AS/NT relationship. The article is written by David Finch, a marketing engineer for a semiconductor manufacturer. David has Asperger Syndrome. David went undiagnosed until his wife, Kristen, made the discovery. Kristen is a speech pathologist who works with autistic children. Through her work, she became more familiar with the milder forms of autism and began to recognize that David has the symptoms. She chose the right time and administered an online Asperger questionnaire to David and the answer was immediately clear to them both. David writes about their struggles and learning to cope with their newfound discovery. In the midst of trials, they have found one another and have reached a gigantic milestone. Not to say that their relationship is perfect now, but it is a work in progress. In my new book, Life with a Partner or Spouse with Asperger Syndrome: Going Over the Edge?, I seek to help NT individuals learn how to arrive at a new understanding of themselves and their significant other. It is my hope that many more will reach out and educate themselves, like David and Kristen, and take the steps to repair a relationship hurt by Asperger Syndrome. It would be a joy to read more success stories like this one.

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