Relationship Realities Podcasts


I have not written here in some time because I moved my blog to my website. Please go there to sign up for all new posts. There are also 27 episodes of my podcast What Healthy Couples Know That You Don’t on the podcast page. Already I have almost 33,000 downloads which means I am reaching a larger audience which has always been my goal. (All of the episodes are only 10 to 12 minutes long.)

I’ve also created two animated videos on my new video page. One is on anxiety & the other is on relationships. There is a lot available for you & there are many learning opportunities at

My website is all about offering substance for free to make my contribution to the world being improved. One of my favorite quotes is by Sarah One Jewett “It seems to me like stealing for men & women to live in the world & do nothing to make it better.”

You can also find me on Instagram & twitter @rhodaoncouples. The above picture is my most recent Instagram post. It’s all too easy for one person’s negativity to spill over onto everyone else without any self awareness. It’s so easy to lie to ourselves & pretend it’s not that bad when we splash onto someone else. We make things ok that really aren’t.

The blog post I just published 12/15/16 is about the lies we tell ourselves. Tanya French’s new novel has a strong female detective who by the end of the book is able to recognize her own dark side of telling herself a story that wasn’t true. It’s a brilliant book on an important subject when false news stories have become ordinary.

In case you are wondering how to listen to a podcast or even what it is: a podcast is listening to a blog post. All you do is go to my website & listen or download podcast addict or another podcast listening app on your phone, type in the title, put your earphones in & listen. It will open up a whole new world of delights! My most recent podcast episode is on Anger Management to Grow Relationships.
















What You’ve Been Missing


So periodically I write a post to say I’ve moved my blog to my website: 

People keep subscribing to this the old site & I feel responsible to let you all know I’m not publishing new stuff here….

So you’re missing out on my most recent blog post: Passivity, Anxiety’s Evil Twin where I expose the problem of passivity. If you read it on the website you will learn why it’s important to face your fears instead of indulge them.

You’re missing out on the best new book I’ve read in 2016, Fates & Furies by Lauren Groff. It’s about a marriage. The first half is the husband’s point of view & the second is the wife who has kept secrets of her childhood from everybody and yet those secrets play out in her marriage. It’s a lovely book.

I also have 22 episodes of my podcast that I would love for you to hear. The picture above is my new podcast cover art. Every episode is 10 minutes or so, not requiring a huge amount of time and packed with free info.

After almost 40 years of working to help couples, I offer a podcast of substance on what relationships require to last for the long haul. I use books & movies to illustrate the points I’m trying to make. I offer challenges of things you can actually do in your own relationship at the end of every podcast.

A podcast is a blog spoken out loud, it’s great to be read to. It’s easy to do, just download any free podcast app on your smart phone, I used Podcast Addict. Then pick podcasts you want to listen to & go exercise or play them while you drive.

Coming up will be a post written by a woman who’s husband is in recovery from sex addiction & what her experience has been in Sex-Anon.

The only way to catch up is to go to my website & subscribe. I appreciate your interest in my efforts and I hope to continue filling you in on how to be successful in relationships for some time to come.  Rhoda



trauma,childhood trauma, PTSD, emotional trauma,EMDR,trauma counseling

I spent years working with rape & incest victims for Pittsburgh Action Against Rape, many decades ago. Trauma is a big deal. If you are struggling with trauma or love someone who is, take the time to learn more about it.

Trauma can interrupt the bravest of individuals, as depicted in Clint Eastwood’s movie American Sniper. You watch Bradley Cooper return home with PTSD & struggle with feeling ok in the normal world after the trauma of war.

Trauma makes you question the very core of who you are, like a jellyfish stranded on the sand.

Trauma can happen in experiences that layer over time like Brian Wilson in the movie Love and Mercy. His father hit him so often he was deaf in his left ear. Then he repeated the experience of never pleasing his father with the disturbed psychologist who treated him. There is a danger in repeating patterns that are harmful when someone suffers with trauma.

There are terrific books out there now that capture trauma in both the fiction & nonfiction worlds. There is more awareness of trauma in 2015 than in 1980 when victims of incest suffered in silence afraid of not being believed. The Books are listed on the trauma page of my website.

Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing or EMDR for short is discussed as a viable treatment for trauma therapy. There is a you tube video of explanation.

If you have received this email you may have not realized the blog has been moved to my website. I will rarely post here except with updates. So please sign up for my blog:

You’ve missed a great post on Control, What is it We Love?. Go have a look. Thanks for subscribing to this blog & I hope you will try my new podcast out! You can find my podcast on my website also or go to iTunes & search for What Healthy Couples Know that You Don’t.


relationship,relationship advice, conflict,blame,fighting,respect,trust,infidelityRelationships are one of the best things in life to get right. A podcast is an audio blog, if you’ve never tried a podcast before maybe now is the time. Each of my podcasts is under 10 minutes & will come out every 2 weeks.

I new podcast is a baby bird trying to fly; reviews & subscriptions are like worms to help it grow. I can’t even get a star rating until a certain number of people have reviewed it. I’d love to make it to New & Noteworthy.

I would love to get your help for the new podcast I’ve launched
on itunes & sticher (for androids). It’s called “What Healthy Couples Know
That You Don’t”

Here are the links:

Directions for 1 1/2 minutes on how to leave a review on iTunes by my podcast coach:   

If you have received this email you may have not realized the blog has been moved to my website. I will rarely post here except with updates. So please sign up for my blog:

You’ve missed a great post on how defensiveness contaminates communication. Go have a look. Thanks for subscribing to this blog & I hope you will try the new podcast out!

I’m Moving Blog to my Website @

best blog site, best blogging sites Today, February 12th marks my sixth year of blogging! I’ve been advised I was foolish not to have my blog on my website (which is also on WordPress), and finally I’m going to correct the situation. I really hope to not lose many subscribers because YOU are why I continue to write. Today, February 12, 2015 marks 6 years of my blogging. I hope to continue to make this one of the best Blog sites on the web. My current new creative spark is to begin podcasting. Podcasts are an audio blog. It’s another format to reach a wider audience. I invite each of you to take time to comment below; I would love to know if there are specific topics or questions about relationships you would like me to address either in a blog post or podcast….. I’m in my early 60’s (my grandson is in the picture above with me) & I want to keep my creative fires burning. My passion for my work has not diminished in over 35 years of working. There is so much to learn about relationships and how to keep them growing. I’ve used the web & will use the microphone in 2015 to reach a wider audience. I hired a podcast mentor Doug Foresta because I want to reach more people with my ideas before I die. This is my unique legacy…… Visit the website & it is easy to see it is about substance, not marketing. I’m proud of that. I believe that fortune favors the bold & that it’s important to stir up my status quo with new risks & challenges. I can’t ask my clients to have courage to try new things if I’m not willing to do so myself. I believe that life requires us to be uncomfortable & do new things to maintain liveliness & vitality. There are a lot of boring people because they base their choices on fear which strangles & suffocates, which keeps the world too small. I’m mostly scared of losing my faithful readers so I invite you to subscribe here to the blog’s new home: (I will also send you a link to podcasts if you sign up) Also try this link Sign up Here Thanks again for 6 years of reading, I appreciate your loyalty because I’m well aware there are sooooo many important priorities tugging at your available time.

Restoring My Relationship to Music with Thanks to Keith Richards

Grateful to Keith & his biography, Music & Keith Richards, genius recommendations, music as an anchor in life,passion & music, staying current with music, Life by Keith Richards

On vacation I finally had time to update my music using itune’s Genius recommendations. I stayed up really late because I was having such a good time discovering Emily Bell, Ed Sheeran, The Peach Kings, Kim Logan and my favorite Audra Mae & The Almighty Sound. Reading Keith Richard’s biography reminded me of how I’ve made the mistake of allowing music to be shoved to the bottom of my priority list.

I loved his passion for music that began by singing in a choir where he learned so much from a choir director who had been kicked out of Oxford with a questionable background. This made me laugh, because when I joined Girl Scouts in 9th grade, our leader was an alcoholic & she was also wonderful. I learned a lot from her while the ice cubes swirled in the glass she always held. The Director of our summer church camp was also an alcoholic who taught me to truly love nature……we weren’t so protected back then & still learned a lot at the same time.

Keith also addresses being bullied as a significant part of his school life. My family moved in the middle of seventh grade which set me up as an easy target & it was Diane Butler who terrorized me. Even today, with public support, it’s hard to deal successfully with bullies.

Music was a central anchor of my life growing up in the cauldron of the 60’s. Keith says playing guitar was more important than getting laid. I remember how inspiring music was & is. I played my first 45 (Petula Clark’s “Downtown”) so many times over & over, I thought my Father was going to lose his mind.

The first serious purchase of my life with my rolled up quarters, nickels & dimes from waitressing was a stereo from Radio Shack. How that money was spent so “foolishly” shocked my Mother so much she used it as a rationalization to steal my tip money from me.

My love for music had to overcome my elementary school beginnings with music. I attempted to play the Flutophone (plastic recorder) and completely failed. I begged my music teacher to believe me before the big concert & she laughed with disbelief. Only Kyle Cook who sat next to me, in the concert, figured out I was not blowing into it, just moving my fingers aimlessly.

It is still a mystery to me how anyone can read music without writing the letters underneath. I won’t even begin to describe my middle school struggle with the violin.

I’m so lucky that music has provided the drummer’s back beat to the rhythm of my life growing up. The exciting pulse of rock along with the raw edge of the blues. I still remember the glory of the first time I listened on a boyfriend’s headphones even though I don’t remember the boy.

I’m sorry I lost track of keeping current while raising children & fell out of the habit of pursuing sound. I’m grateful Keith brought me back. Music is so much fun, why do people my age get stuck in the old & familiar? It’s being open to new possibilities that helps us age a touch more gracefully.

Music can shift my mood in a heart beat & if I exercise without it I don’t try as hard.

More about Keith: I’m really glad he doesn’t credit his past drug use with his creativity. He comes across as genuine & blessed with passion. Anyone who plays guitar would gain from reading his book Life. He goes into great depth which gave me even more respect for his talent. Really a solid read, very enjoyable.

Thanks Keith.

Art & Therapy: Both Attend to the Part that’s Missing or Lopsided

self awareness, personal development, therapy success, example of  self awareness, self development, personal improvement, polarity, opposites, art

Improving self-awareness is often a key to success in psychotherapy. In sessions I often consider how someone is lopsided or what’s missing. Three of the art works at the 2014 Carnegie International did exactly the same thing in paying attention to opposite energy.

Fear is something many people are lopsided in. Is that true of you? If it is, explore what is the opposite of fear in your mind? The answer will be unique to who you are because there are so many possibilities.

Security might be one answer. Courage seems more accurate to me. It takes courage to know & accept there is no such thing as security. The reality is we live in a difficult world where natural disaster or someone without a heart can easily make our world collapse. Like the tsunami that destroyed the life of the author of the non-fiction book Wave, Sonali Deraniyagala.

If you have an expectation that you can create a safe world through control, you are only pretending to yourself. It’s like the difference between Disneyland & the real Grimm’s fairy tales. Disney does not allow Cinderella’s stepsister to chop off her toe or heel with a knife (as in Grimm) to fit in the glass slipper, she just squeezes her foot in.

Honest security is the courage to accept reality can be very dark.

Art can often have a similar appreciation for what’s missing. The Mexican artist Pedro Reyes who took weapons captured from the drug cartels and created the work Disarm which is a collection of self playing instruments. The Gallery Guide for the Carnegie International describes Reyes as “interested in the purposeful & playful, in turning ‘agents of death” into ‘instruments of life’.”

The British artist, Sarah Lucas created sculptures called NUDs that consist of tights & wire. The Gallery Guide says “One of the core tasks of sculpture is the transformation of the human body into an object. For centuries, this transformation was coded by the masculine eye & executed by men. Lucas embraces this tradition with irreverence, even contempt…she mocks the celebratory use of material such as bronze or marble, and replaces the heroic with the flabby.”

self-awareness, therapy success, example of self awareness, self development, personal improvement, polarity, opposites, personal development, sarah Lucas

MLaden Stilinovic is an artist from Croatia who believes authority uses words & money for power. He takes a dictionary which represents power and obliterates all the words and writes in the word pain because pain is the opposite of power. He says “pain is the consequence of power.”
Mladen Stilinovic, therapy success, self awareness, example of self awareness, self development, personal improvement, polarity, personal development, art

The work in sculpture & painting of Nicole Eisenman (born in France, lives in NYC) is also irreverent. The Guide says she has an “uncanny capacity for capturing the joy, pain,embarrassment & ecstasy of being human.” Compare her “Venus Spring Fling” to the painting by Botticelli above.

Nicole Eisenman, self awareness, therapy success, personal development, opposites, personal improvement, polarities, self development, therapy success

All four artists capture opposite energy. All four resonated inside of me as carrying important, unrecognized truths. The same way a therapist looks for unrecognized truths in the client.

Psychotherapists pay attention to the unexplored parts of who someone is, the parts that need to be experimented with in order to be more whole and have more range to who you are. The more whole you are restores your ability to recognize possibilities & then make better choices.

Who wants to be so lopsided you end up being boring & predictable? I want to be both a hard worker & good at being delighted, having fun. I want to laugh deep down from my belly & be able to truly wail at great tragedy. The goal is to be more whole & embrace different parts of who you are, which is one of my favorite parts.

Art heals the world & makes it whole, while therapy heals the individual. They both ask for either greater awareness or self awareness. Artists & psychotherapists have more in common than one might suspect.