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The Box July 31, 2012

Posted by occhristiancounseling in attachment, Dr. Debi Smith.
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My dentist has a poster on the ceiling at his office. He put it there so his patients would have something to look at while they’re in the chair. I think about it sometimes because it reminds me of myself. It’s a picture of a tiny kitten looking up helplessly from the bottom of large cardboard box. The caption reads,

“I’m much better at getting myself into things than I am at getting myself out of them.”

Maybe you can identify? Isaiah put it this way,

We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way… (53:6a)

Kittens, sheep, people. Sometimes there’s not much difference. No one plans to get himself or herself into a pickle (sorry…I like to mix metaphors), yet we all do at one time or another.

Many couples start backing themselves into The Box early in their relationship. Something happens and one of them has hurt feelings. Maybe it’s the woman. (Sometimes it’s the man.) If she says something to her partner about it, he might minimize her feelings or get defensive about his actions or intentions. He means well, but it doesn’t help her feel better. (I’ll tell you the story of Mark and Cathy in a future note.)

At first, it seems like a simple thing. Each tries to forget what happened, to move beyond it because it feels so childish to them both. However, the outcome of those early hurts starts a cycle of negative interactions that will continue to grow and solidify over time. Before long, they’re trapped in The Box.

In The Box, he believes that she is overly sensitive and avoids sharing his own thoughts and feelings with her. She believes that her feelings don’t matter to him, and she withdraws, too. It’s lonely being in The Box together.

Getting out of The Box is simple, but it isn’t easy. The Good Shepherd is there to help. Just ask. He may suggest you find a local “shepherd” to walk with you through the process and show you the way step-by-step. If He does, give us a call. We’re here to help you get out of The Box. It’s a process, and I’ll write more about that in future notes, too. In the meantime, I’ll be praying for you both!

Do Single Men Puzzle You? July 23, 2012

Posted by occhristiancounseling in dating, Dr. Debi Smith, emotions, Q & A, understanding men.
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Do men behave in ways you don’t understand? One question comes up repeatedly among unmarried women:

We were getting along so well! Why did he disappear? Did I do something wrong?

It seems that single men tend to move forward in a relationship, then back up – which can be a frustrating twist on the Country Two-Step for the women they’ve expressed an interest in. Some women take it in stride, whereas others begin to struggle with their self-confidence. And we know that women with low self-confidence can be very unattractive to men. Which can lead to a self-fulfilling prophecy about being unlovable.

So what’s a woman to do?

Some decide to “fake it ’til you make it.” So you pretend to be something you’re not? Seriously. How can that be helpful? Others say “dump the dude” … Isn’t that kind of like quitting before you get fired? Do you pursue him? No, that never works. It’s very unflattering to say the least.

Time for a reality check.

First of all, when a man appears to be taking a step back from a relationship, that may or may not be true. Remember that men do not think or behave like a woman, so there’s absolutely no point in judging him according to the standards of the Ideal Woman. He may just be busy.

He may also be taking a time out … and thinking about where he needs to lead next. If he truly cares about you, he’ll give your relationship a lot of thought and prayer. Being a leader is an awesome task, and a good man will want to get it right.

And it may not be something you need to figure out just yet.

Although it’s true that a woman’s self-esteem relies heavily on what she thinks her man thinks of her, it shouldn’t rule her life. Your self-esteem and your self-confidence must be based on the unconditional love of Christ. In the words of songwriter Tim Timmons,

Jesus you lavished on me
Your revolutionary love love love
Love love love
I am Your masterpiece
Created for the world to see see see
Your love love love through me

As you grasp the reality of God’s love for you, you’ll realize you can fully trust Him to take care of you. And if the guy really is going away, it’s probably for your best.

Dance With Me Workshops for Men and Women July 17, 2012

Posted by occhristiancounseling in classes, dating, Dr. Debi Smith, Events.
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“Dance With Me” For Men …

  • Just Follow My Lead: Everything You Need to Know About Women … in 90 minutes or less

“Dance With Me” For Women …

  • Do You Love Me? The Psychology of Men and Relationships

This is a limited time offer, so register today and ensure your place in the Workshop of your choice!

What Every Woman Needs to Know About Men July 11, 2012

Posted by occhristiancounseling in attachment, classes, dating, Dr. Debi Smith, Events, understanding men.
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FREE 90-Minute Seminar
by Dr. Debi Smith

Newport Beach, CA

Are you a . . .

  • daughter?
  • friend?
  • girlfriend?
  • fiancee?
  • wife?
  • mother/grandmother/aunt?
  • woman who knows a man?

Have you ever . . .

  • been puzzled by male behavior?
  • wondered why men and boys to the things they do?
  • wished he knew what to do to make you happy without being told?
  • asked a man what he’s thinking about and only got a reply of “nothing”?

Join Dr. Debi Smith in Newport Beach as she unravels the mystery of men and our relationships with them. In this FREE 90-minute seminar, you will learn:

  • Why boys and men are the way they are
  • How your behavior impacts their behavior
  • What you can start doing today to create more meaningful relationships with ALL the men in your life

The Value of Testosterone July 10, 2012

Posted by occhristiancounseling in attachment, Dr. Debi Smith, emotions, understanding women.
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About a month ago, I posted a video about Women and Anger. I said that women are afraid of men’s anger. In fact, women are afraid a lot of the time.

Most men are surprised to hear that we fear for our physical safety on a daily basis. If you doubt that, just ask your wife, girlfriend, or mother about the last time she was worried that she might be physically harmed by someone. We fear men most of all … probably because of the power of an increased testosterone level.

The good news is that we also value that higher testosterone level. When we’re afraid or nervous, there’s nothing quite so comforting as the mere presence of a male who cares for us. You don’t really have to do anything, guys. Just be there for us.

Want Bonus Points?

Hold her sometimes – just because. She’ll love you all the more for it.