Do you have what it takes to survive the holidays with your step-family and in-laws?

The holiday season is a fun filled time for families to celebrate being together and sharing traditions with one another. The Christmas lights, carolers and smell of ham cooking in the kitchen is enough to send anyone into a blissful holiday euphoria. Watching children open their presents while cookies bake in the oven is a scene set for happiness and joy.  With family packed around the table, we can see all of our wonderful blessings right in front of us. However, sometimes those wonderful blessings may not be getting along with each other as well as you had hoped.

Introducing family members to each other for the first time is always stressful. Throw in the holiday season and you have a recipe for disaster. Managing to keep everyone happy and stress-free could results in a full on meltdown for the happy host. Are you equipped to navigate sharing the holidays with parents, in-laws, and step-families, turning the chaotic holiday gathering into the loving family picture you had hoped for?

Dr. Katrina Kuzyszyn-Jones is owner of KKJ Forensic and Psychological Services in Durham, North Carolina. Katrina has worked with many families during the separation and divorce process and understands the many challenges facing committed couples. She has worked with individuals and couples dealing with issues of infidelity, retirement, and even becoming new parents. Dr. Jones has experience in private practice, community mental health and the criminal justice system.

To find out more about Dr. Katrina Kuzyszyn-Jones and her practice, KKJ Forensic and Psychological Services, you can visit their website or call (919) 493-1975 for an appointment.

Is your marriage strong enough to survive holiday stress?

In a perfect world, the holiday season is a time of celebration, family togetherness, and making memories that will last a lifetime. However, back in the real world, the “holiday season” is a two-month marathon testing the emotional, physical, and mental endurance of a marriage. Between the various family gatherings, dealing with in-laws, and trying to find the perfect gift for the ones you love, stress is available in abundance during the holidays. Even though the list of priorities keeps getting longer, the days are getting shorter and it’s only a matter of time before the perfect storm that’s been brewing is finally unleashed. Is your relationship strong enough to weather the holiday storm or will it fall to pieces under the weight of all that holiday stress?

Dr. Theresa Lewis is a licensed Psychologist with Lewis Consulting Services in Raleigh, North Carolina. Dr. Lewis earned her doctorate in Counseling Psychology from the University of Florida. Dr. Lewis is a Parenting Coordinator, conducting parenting classes for separated and divorced parents, as well as assisting separated parents to develop effective co-parenting skills and parenting plans.

To find out more about Dr. Theresa Lewis and her practice, Lewis Consulting Services, you can visit their website or call (919) 622-1303 for an appointment.

What happens to a marriage when parents must begin to prepare for an empty nest?

When parents start to prepare to send their son or daughter off to college they are not only helping to ease the transition into college life for their child, but also paving the way for their own next steps… of marriage and an empty nest, that is. But many families aren’t exactly aware of the challenges that arise with big transitions and changes, and therefore they’re not as proactive as they could be.

Sometimes a couple isn’t really clear on the parenting roles that are played with kids in college. When this is the case, it’s easy for parents to be on different pages– and they might not have a solid plan for how they will respond to different crises and critical issues. With a little guidance, however, it can be easy and uplifting for a couple to get back to a positive place; a place where they successfully parent and maintain a long-standing marriage as a team.

Today’s guest is Dr. Susan Orenstein, the director of Orenstein Solutions. Susan says couples can fix these issues by working together to create plans for the expected and the unexpected. An empty nest doesn’t have to be a bad thing… it can, in fact, be just the beginning.

To find out more about Susan and her practice, visit their website or call (919) 968-8586