Why I’m an Optimist

You might think with so much ugliness, cruelty and fear in the world, that optimism would be foolish or naïve. Nope. The ugliness has always been there; but, now, it’s there for us to see it. These days, the ugliness is coming out of the closet. I grew...

Dating with the Buddha

How can you bring spirituality and humor to dating? Or, as one writer so aptly put it: What if the Buddha dated? How would he handle getting to know someone? How would he bring spirituality and “enlightenment” to the process? Although as far as I know,...

Bringing back romance

Plenty of people have focused on bringing “sexy” back. But, perhaps it’s time to dig a little deeper. What about romance? You know, that desire to be wined, dined, paid attention to, courted, wooed (I like that old-fashioned word). I hear from a lot of clients in...

Is my child gay?

One of my clients, a divorced businessman, has a 16-year-old son “Evan”. Evan just told his dad that he’s gay. He said it very confidently. To Evan, there appears to be no doubt about this.  But his dad wonders. The plot thickens...

Can You Be Happy For Someone Else?

There’s a word in Buddhism - Muditā – that means “celebrating the success of others”. The first time I heard it, at a meditation retreat in Northern California, I wondered “Why is the teacher talking about this? What does this have to do with feeling...

Let’s talk about sex

A big part of mental health is having a healthy sex life, but, for some reason, our sexual selves are often left out of any discussion about our mental and physical health. Maybe it’s because it makes some doctors or therapists – or us -...

I think I’m bisexual…

Dear Michael: I am a happily-married woman with a young child, a great job and loving friends. There’s only one problem, I think I’m bisexual, and I don’t know what to do about it. What do I do with my feelings for other women? I acted...

Finding your perfect partner

We all have this idea of the “perfect” partner, and many of us feel disappointed and even annoyed when we don’t get him or her. A while back, I offered a workshop on this topic ("Finding Your Perfect Partner"). In this column, I've taken the basic...

The ABCs of Couples Counseling

Over the years, many people have asked me a lot of questions about couples counseling. For this column, I’ve boiled those questions down to three, which I call the ABCs of couples counseling: A: What can it do for my partner and I (the possibilities)? B: What should...