Parenting Hack: Power Struggles

Parenting Hack: Power Struggles

It’s a story as old as time…

Parent requests child take shower. Child staunchly refuses. Parent raises voice, hurls threats, freaks out, while child watches on, mocking the helpless adult. Eventually, child melts down too and the whole house is in uproar. Parent considers briefly maybe child doesn’t need shower to survive? Parent decides if taking away Christmas will teach child to shower. Meanwhile, child remains unshowered and the stage is set for the next time parent requests child take shower…

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Procrastination Does Not Equal Laziness…

I recently came across a New York Times Article entitled Why You Procrastinate (It Has Nothing to Do With Self-Control).

Try looking at procrastination this way! According to the article:“Procrastination isn’t a unique character flaw or a mysterious curse on your ability to manage time, but a way of coping with challenging emotions and negative moods induced by certain tasks— boredom, anxiety, insecurity, frustration, resentment, self-doubt, and beyond.”

The article goes on to say that becoming aware of the emotions that are triggered when faced with a task will help you resolve those emotions to be able to move forward and complete the task. Are you afraid to fail? Are you afraid the result won’t be good enough? Whatever is holding you back, challenge those thoughts and fears to allow yourself to think differently about yourself and the task at hand. There are several other helpful strategies that the article lists. Check it out here, it’s an easy read.

Most importantly, BE KIND TO YOURSELF. Life is hard enough and beating yourself up for not being productive will move you farther away from your goals. Take a break, have a cookie, and check in with yourself about why you’re really having a hard time getting this task done. Remember, we are here to help you figure out those feelings if you are having a tough go of it on your own. Start with small steps and before you know it, you will be the master of getting stuff done!

Source: Lieberman, Charlotte (2019, March 28). Why You Procrastinate (It Has Nothing to Do With Self-Control). Retrieved from:

Welcome, Sammy!

FCFT continues to grow and expand!

We are pleased to welcome Sammy Trayer, MA to our team of therapists!

Coming from a youth bureau setting, Sammy comes to us with a specific focus on children and teens. She has helped youth with a variety of issues ranging from behavior problems, school related problems, and divorce and remarriage related issues.

Sammy has also successfully worked with families and couples around disagreements about parenting styles, single parent stressors, and general relationship difficulties. She has experience supporting individuals with depression, anxiety, trauma, and grief. No issue is too small or large!

Say hi to Sammy when you see her! Or reach out to her at 203-416-6008 ext 602 or

A truth about relationships.

Truth: If you want to have good and healthy relationships but are struggling to, you must look at the things you carry from your past and either change them or make peace with them.

Our ability to make and keep relationships, who we choose to have relationships with, and the types of relationships we choose to have are all guided by the blueprint that is our childhood and our experience with the people who raised us. They are who we had our first and most developmentally important interactions with. I say “choose” because we do not choose our birth family, but we can choose going forward who we want to be friends with, date, work with, live with, etc. and those are the relationships that help form our identity outside of our family.

We carry all the good, bad, and ugly experiences from our family and childhood with us into our future relationships with people who are also carrying their good, bad, and ugly experiences from their family and childhood with them. We can’t help it, it’s how humans are.

We also want to make sure we don’t perpetuate our own cycles by entering relationships with very bad people and things out in the world. These experiences might make us desensitized to dangerous relationships and situations because, hey, we’ve already been through that and it “wasn’t a big deal.” The key is awareness, understanding, and forgiving yourself for what happened, so you can be free to enter safe and healthy relationships and accurately spot a bad one from a mile away.

In conclusion, our blueprint for how we operate in relationships as well as the quality of relationships we will have is initially determined by our past and biological family. We can perpetuate positive and negative cycles of relationships down to our children, so it is important to know ourselves and our people. Most importantly, we can change the bad by recognizing how it exists in ourselves and then change ourselves.

The First Scary Step: Reaching out for Help

In a world where everyone is posting suicide hotlines, #MeToo, and invitations to come over for coffee or something stronger, do you feel ready to make that step for yourself?

It’s Halloween, so we’re talking about something scary for a lot of people! 

First of all, your feelings are totally normal and understandable. The fact that you’ve even acknowledged to yourself that you need help is huge! Feel the fear and reach out anyway! You’ll be glad you did. Oh, and don’t feel that you have to go with the first therapist you find. Be picky, this is your health and well-being we are talking about here! You wouldn't pay for a crappy dinner at a 5 star restaurant, or pay for a medical doctor who doesn’t take good care of you, so don’t settle for a therapist if you don’t feel they are a good fit.

Make that initial appointment and breathe a sigh of relief. It doesn’t matter if you “don't know what to say” or "there’s just so much where do I start?” We always say: Start with what made you call in the first place. And when you walk out of that first session having totally crushed your fears, you’ll wonder why you were so scared in the first place.