My Blog
Pennick Family Therapy - "a place for change"

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Ten Reasons You Should Not Get Married
Unloving Mothers
Creativity to Reduce Stress & Heal
How to Talk to Someone Who is Depressed
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Healing your Broken Relationship

How do you heal a broken relationship?  How do you trust, again, after someone cheats?  How do you reconnect after so many years of living with distance between you? These are a few of my many questions that I hear from clients who are trying to repair their relationships.  Unfortunately, most people wait until they are ready to divorce or leave a relationship before they decide to seek couple’s therapy.  At this point they have one foot out the door and are saying “Let’s give it one more chance.

Are you stuck in a rut?

Are you stuck in a rut?  Getting stuck is inevitable but staying there is not.  There are all kinds of ways we can get stuck; exercise slump, relationship rut, career stalemate, or an overall mental funk.  Do any of those sound familiar?  There are traps that we fall into that stall us and threaten to flat line our progress.

Here are some helpful tips for getting unstuck and avoid the mistakes that sabotage your success:

  1. Start over –when we begin a new change we are enthusiastic and we start to see dramatic changes; however, once we get comfortable we let up on our drive.

Are you winning or losing in your relationship?

The subject of baseball may seem odd for a blog subject on a Marriage and Family Therapy website. However, baseball has been on my mind the last week because our Kansas City Royals were playing in the World Series. My husband and I lived in Kansas City for about ten years and attend all the Royals games we could. That included the 1985 season when they were last in the World Series. Last night our Royals lost to the San Francisco Giants. So are they losers? Do you feel that you lose in your relationships or are you always the winner?

Mindfulness Creates Choices

Are you aware of your choices?  So often in my practice, it is apparent that many times clients are not aware of their choices.  I think so often we accept a situation because it has become the normal behavior and we feel that we have loss our power to make changes.  This is especially true with child abuse victims.  If you have never had a voice in your life because someone took it away at a young age, it is difficult to be aware that you have a choice to make your life different.

I Have a Dream!

“I have a dream.” Martin Luther King made that beautiful speech which inspired millions at the time, and continues to inspire millions today. Do you have a dream? I ask my clients about their goals for therapy and most often they can list at least three or four things they want to fix in their lives. They usually start with all the things that are wrong, what they do wrong or what someone else does to them. However, when I ask them the simple question, “Do you have a dream?

Building Resilience Can Improve Your Health

Why is it that some people take life’s small setbacks, slights and missteps with a shrug, while other freak out, blow up, or fly off with loud outbursts or seething silence?   To only fairly recently scientist did not recognize this as being significant to our health. 

As it turns out, just as life’s more challenging events can flood the bloodstream with stress hormones, even the smallest of hassles can take a toll on our health as well.  According to Nancy Nicolson, Ph.D., an associate professor of psychiatry and psychology at Maastricht University, in the Netherlands, “The changes are small – a 10 to 15 percent increase in cortisol levels in response to typical daily annoyances, as opposed to a 100 percent or more increase during a very stressful event,” like a college exam.

Healthy Life

Healthy Life

What does a healthy life look like?  Do you have a healthy life?  This month’s theme is “Health” and with all the current concerns about epidemics, international conflicts, the economy and just the daily stressors of home and family maintaining a “healthy life” can be a challenge.  My definition of a “healthy life” may be different from yours.  I look at having a healthy life as having a healthy body, mind and spirit.  I further believe that to achieve a healthy life, you need a healthy attitude, healthy family, healthy marriage and skills to maintain a healthy lifestyle.


Every month I have picked a theme to cover and this month the theme is close to my heart.  It is Resilience.  How resilient are you?  Do you know how to describe resilience? Resilience (or resiliency) is our ability to adapt and bounce back when things don't go as we planned. Resilient people don't wallow or dwell on failures; they acknowledge the situation, learn from their mistakes, and then move forward.  We all have resilient people in our lives and we hear ourselves saying, “I don’t know how she/he keeps going with all the heartaches, disappointments, setbacks and losses?

Are you ready for change?

One of the most frequently asked questions I hear is “How do I change my ….?” You can fill in the blank with anything from spouse, child, life, behavior to marriage. Everyone reports that there is some area of their life that isn’t working and they say they want change. Unfortunately, the issues become difficult when they learn that to have change they must become uncomfortable.

Change is a constant.  Some changes we go through are small; some are more of the "crisis" variety.

Are you Present?

Recent tragic events in the news have made people begin to discuss the way they conduct their lives, and what happens when things go terrible wrong. Hearing about children left in unattended in hot cars with deadly consequences, our first thought is how could someone do that to a child? How could a parent forget their child? It is naturally to want to place blame because it is easier to understand if the person who did it is a monster. If they were a horrible parent, it means that someone like you would never be able to do something so awful.