How to Set Boundaries for Holiday Guests and Be a Good Guest

The holidays represent different things for different people. For many people, the holidays mean parties, entertaining and house guests, which means extra work and preparation. Can you be a good hostess and set  boundaries for house guests? Absolutely. In fact, if you don't set some expectations, you may wind up in your local hospital psych ward with HSD - Holiday Stress Disorder (term mine). Here is a list of expectations, boundaries and protocol for house guests. Read more...

Septoplasty and Turbinate Reduction Surgery Improves Rest, Sleep, Breathing and Health

I have always suffered from breathing problems, sinus pain and sleep disorders. I began using a CPAP breathing machine to reduce sleep apnea. I noticed great improvement in sleep and breathing after undergoing a septoplasty and turbinate reduction surgery. Read on...

Veteran's Day Google Doodle Controversy

Google Doodle Veteran's Day 2010 Controversy: Muslim Crescent Moon or Red 'e'?
Veteran's Day 2010 was a time for gratitude and remembrance. For some it was about misplaced patriotism when the Google Doodle showed an American flag draped over 'Google', obscuring the red ending 'e' and making it look like the Muslim crescent moon.
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Best Books for Children (and Adults) About Bullying

Bullying: 10 Books for Home and School
Ten witty and ingenious books for kids and adults to address the problem of bullying at home and school. Read as bullied underdogs take on their persecutors in proactive, bully-busting ways.
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Age and Maturity Determine Fear Factor of Scary Movies

How Age and Maturity Level Determine Which Movies Will Scare People
I have a theory about fear in general and horror movies in particular: the age a person is when they experience any particular 'horror' movie will affect how scary they believe it to be. I believe that maturity and developmental level affect fear.
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Helping Your Kids Avoid Bullies

How to Help Your Children Deal with Selfish Mean Kids
Every children's play group or social club has them. That one family that lets their children run wild. They behave as if their children can do no wrong. These children are hurtful. They don't play nice or fair. And mom is oblivious to them.
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Panic Attacks as Coping and Defense Mechanisms

Panic Attack as Coping and Defense Mechanism for Stress and Crisis
'Existential crisis' refers to experiences of extreme stress or that shake a person's core convictions. In response to 'existential crisis' stress, the mind may go into safety mode. Panic attacks can be defense and coping mechanisms.
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Relationship and Communication Issues: Respond in Love vs. React in Anger

Relationships and Communication: Responding Kindly is Healthier Than Reacting Angrily
We've all seen (or been in relationships) where one person gives most of the positive while the other partner selfishly takes the positive but gives negative. However 'what goes around comes around' doesn't work. Here's why.
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Codependent Recovery: Let Pain Be Your Guide

Emotional and Codependent Recovery: Let Pain Be Your Guide
It's so easy, when facing a painful situation, to hide from negative feelings. But anger, frustration, pain, suffering guide us. Doctors say when recommending treatment to 'let pain be your guide'. This works in co-dependent recovery, too.
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Codependent Recovery: Don't Volunteer to Be a Victim

Codependent Recovery: Stop Volunteering to Be the Victim
It's foolish and cruel to say that people 'bring pain on themselves.' We aren't given the ability to foretell the future, so there is no way to know what direction any given situation will take. However, we don't have to volunteer to be a victim.
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AA and Alanon Slogan and Recovery: But for the Grace of God

AA and Alanon Slogans: But for the Grace of God
The 12 Step AA and Al-Anon programs describes their beliefs this way: 'spiritual but not religious'. We recognize a Higher Power in AA and Al-Anon, whom some of us choose to call God. 'But for the Grace of God' refers to our higher power.
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AA Sayings, Alanon Slogans and Recovery: Just for Today

AA Saying, Alanon Slogans: Just for Today
AA and Alanon are known for their 12 Step program which guide recovering alcoholics and co-dependent people through self-help steps. AA and Al Anon also use slogans and sayings in the recovery process. 'Just for Today' is a popular AA and Alanon slogan.
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AA and Alanon Slogans: Using HALT for Depression, Codependent Behavior and Detachment

AA and Alanon Slogans: Using HALT in Recovery and Treating Depression
In working a 12-step program like AA and Al-Anon, an important recovery and self-help tool is the acronym HALT. Whenever I feel Hungry, Angry, Lonely or Tired, I need to HALT, identify this need and address it. Here's how HALT works.
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Alcoholic Addictive and Dry Drunk Crazy Making Behavior

Codependence and Recovery: Profile of Alcoholic Addictive Behavior What is alcoholic behavior? Al-Anon calls it 'crazy-making behavior'. Whether the person engaging in alcoholic behavior is drunk or just acting like it, alcoholic behavior is disturbing, frightening and impossible to interact with. Read More

Communication Skills in Alcoholic Addictive Behavior

Addictive and Alcoholic Behavior: Poor Communication Skills
Alcoholic and addictive behavior makes for very poor communication skills. Addict talk in confusing and often counter-productive. Alcoholic behavior doesn't listen to others. Addicts are self-centered and often unable to maintain relationships.
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Codependent Enabling Behavior, Recovery and Detachment

Codependent Enabling Behavior in Response to Alcoholic Addictive Behavior What is codependent or enabling behavior? Codependent behavior fuels alcoholic stinkin' thinkin' (toxic addictive thoughts that impell the non-addict to try and fix the addict's behavior). Enabling behavior is fueld by stinkin thinkin. Co-dependents care-take, ignore the elephant in the living room and excuse crazy behavior. Read More

Pity Party: When Low Self-Esteem Becomes a Weapon

Addictive and Alcoholic Behavior: Bullying and Using Low Self-Esteem as a Weapon
Bullying and alcoholic addictive behavior use low self-esteem as a crutch and an excuse for behavior. 'Don't expect much from me; I'm suffering.'Alcoholic behavior, when confronted, often turns low self-esteem into a crutch and a weapon.
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How to Detach from Stinking Thinking, Bullying, Codependency

How to Detach from Bullying, Stinkin Thinkin and Alcoholic Addictive Behavior
Whether you live with an alcoholic addictive person, or just someone who acts like one, with dry drunk, stinkin thinkin bully behavior, detachment is the key. To detach means to disconnect from and stay away from behavior which is sick and crazy.
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Alanon and the Blame Shame Game

Understanding How to Play the Blame Shame Game
The Blame-Shame Game is a term used in psychology and 12-Step recovery programs to explain behavior that is prompted by blame or shame. The blame-shame game is an avoidance and projection coping mechanism. Here's what it looks like and how to avoid it.
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Why Do Bullies Act they Way They Do?

What Does a Bully Look like and Why Do People Bully?
Bullies believe that they are not bound by the same rules to which they bind others. This is referred to as the 'two sets of rules': one set for the bully and one set for everyone else. The bully controls both sets of rules and changes them as he wishes.
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AA Slogans for Emotional Health: Keep it Clean

Relationship and Emotional Health Help: Alanon Slogan 'Keep it Clean'
Al-Anon and AA (Alchoholics Anonymous)provide a great toolkit for emotional health. It's called the Al-Anon Slogans. Part of recovery from addiction or emotional illness includes 'Keeping it clean' in relationships.
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Quitting Antidepressants and Relearning Self-Care

Recovering from SSRI Antidepressants: Learning to Practice Self-Care Without Medication
A big part of coming off from anti-depressants involves learning to take care of yourself with medication. It's easy to forget self-care and rely on medication to cope with depressive issues. Quitting anti-depressants means  rethinking self-care habits.
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Toxic Shame vs. Healthy Guilt:

What is Toxic Shame and How Does it Differ from Healthy Guilt?
What is shame? Shame is good, healthy guilt that has gone bad. Shame is also organic guilt with no foundation in reality. Guilt as a limit switch for unhealthy behavior, is healthy, when it remains in proportion and is
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Relationship Issues: Why Your Partner May Be Cooling Off Toward You

Relationship Issues: Why is My Spouse Turning Away from Me?
My spouse is turning away from me, what do I do? Are you engaging in toxic behaviors? Stinkin thinkin? Do you think everyone owes you something, and you're a miserable angry grouch? Might have something to do with it, ya think?
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What Makes a Sociopath?

Psychology and Mental Health Issues: Do People Become Sociopaths Because of Past Trauma?
Do you ever get tired of hearing after a crime has been committed that the perpetrator was 'off his meds' or 'had a difficult childhood' or some other excuse for his behavior? It doesn't follow that experiencing struggles produces sociopathic behavior.
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Paxil and SSRI Antidepressant Weight Gain Issues

Want to Lose Weight? Get Off the Anti-Depressants
For the first 40 years of my life, I a) maintained a constant weight of 130 pounds even after four babies and b) did not take anti-depressants. In 2003, I went on Paxil after the loss of a baby. Since then I've been steadily gaining weight.
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Freelance writer, Top 100 Yahoo! Voices, Yahoo! News, Shine, Michigan, Detroit), blogger, teacher, mom of 4, happily married 25 years. Graduated GVSU 1986, psychology/general education and special education. continuing ed up to present. Certified MI teacher. Writing Michigan history mystery, children's Gothic fantasy. Areas of expertise: education, relationships, mental health, nutrition, history, world cultures. Passions: faith, Catholic church, sustainable living, interfaith initiatives, living simply that others might simply live. Working on MA in EI education. 

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