When hurt, or even anticipating the possibility of pain, our protective nature takes hold and we look to vanquish pain to anywhere but here...here being the house inside ourselves. Interesting fact: Did you know our brains don’t really differentiate between the felt experience of physical pain and emotional pain? Well, it’s a little more complicated than that (I trust you to Google it) but the idea being: broken heart or broken bone, it all hurts. Over time we learn to predict, anticipate, and guard against the possibility of being hurt. The world makes more sense when we know what to expect, who are the good guys and the bad guys. But when your partner has to be the bad guy so the world makes sense, "Houston, we have a problem." How do you get past these relational stalemates to build something new and vital with your partner? To get to the bottom of this, I interviewed Phil Ringstrom PhD, Psychoanalyst and Couples Therapist extraordinaire. Enjoy!

Michelle Harwell, MS, LMFT is an expert trainer, respected speaker, and licensed therapist in trauma and attachment. She is noted for her specialization in areas of development, attachment, trauma, and neuroscience, and her ability to communicate complex topics with clarity and humor. Michelle is currently completing her PhD in Psychoanalysis from The Institute of Contemporary Psychoanalysis. She received her BA in English Literature from University of Oklahoma, MA in Theology from Fuller Theological Seminary, and MS in Marriage and Family Therapy from the Fuller Graduate School of Psychology.