Columnists, Articles

April 8th, 2018

School shootings offer no easy answers

By John Grohol, Psy.D.

Not a year goes by in America where we don’t suffer through another horrible mass shooting at a school, perpetrated by a young adult or teenager with a gun. Despite the outcry from both sides, however, there are no clear or easy answers on how to reduce or altogether stop school shootings from taking place. We are a nation born of violence, which we then codified into our Constitution. And while it’s perfectly sensible to suggest reasonable limitations on gun purchases, such solutions all but turn a blind eye to the reality of guns in our nation. Today, there are [More]

April 7th, 2018

Parting words from our legal columnist

By Edward Stern J.D.

In 2001, I began writing this legal column. Over the years, I’ve written fewer and it is likely this one is the last. I am very appreciative of the opportunity to write and express views in this space, but now it is someone else’s turn with new energy and, perhaps, new viewpoints. It’s become concerning recently that issues that appeared to be resolved have re-surfaced to be debated and adjusted. Issues including “affordable care” and “parity” of treatment of mental health and physical health are again at the forefront. Another major concern is insurance as not all psychologists are able [More]

March 6th, 2018

A proper introduction

By John Grohol, Psy.D.

Many of you are familiar with Psych Central, and hopefully for those of you who are, you’re as happy as I am that we’re able to carry on the wonderful publishing tradition of New England Psychologist. But I suspect there are many professionals who are unfamiliar with us or our history. The roots of Psych Central began while I attended Nova Southeastern University working on my doctorate. In my first year there in 1990, my childhood best friend took his own life back home. As anyone who’s been touched by suicide knows, it was a devastating loss. It also drove [More]

March 4th, 2018

Causes of disenfranchised grief: A reminder for therapists

By New England Psychologist Staff

I’ll never forget my first lesson in the meaning of disenfranchised grief. While interning, I was assigned to a young woman who had been referred by her doctor for depression. In our first session, I heard her story. She had miscarried her first pregnancy only a few months before. “Everyone tells me to get over it,” she said. “When I was crying in the hospital, a nurse told me that miscarriage is nature’s way to end pregnancies that aren’t quite right and that I’m young so I will have other babies. But I wanted this baby I had already named. [More]

March 2nd, 2018

You know you’re getting old when…

By Alan Bodnar Ph.D.

We’ve all heard it said that you’re only as old as you think you are, but I’m proud of my three score and ten. This milestone is a privilege denied to many and each new day is a gift to be used well, enjoyed, and savored. I am also aware that 70 is not especially old. According to gerontologists, it is threshold of our senior years, the midpoint of a stage of life beginning at 65 called the young old to be followed, if we are lucky, by the old beginning at 75, and the oldest old at 85. Still, [More]

February 11th, 2018

Transitions

By John Grohol, Psy.D.

Life is all about transitions. It’s what keeps things interesting and challenges our complacency. I’m honored to take over the reins of New England Psychologist, an independent voice that began life as Massachusetts Psychologist in 1993 by Denise Yocum, Psy.D., expanding to all of New England in 2002. Dr. Yocum approached me at the beginning of October to discuss the possibility of purchasing the publication after deciding the time was ripe for retirement. Following a few discussions, it became clear we were aligned in both interests and beliefs. I want to take a moment to thank Dr. Yocum for her [More]

February 9th, 2018

Painting a life

By Alan Bodnar Ph.D.

When you reach a certain age and start thinking about retirement, you will get plenty of advice about how to stay healthy and mentally sharp when you stop working at the job that defined your career for most of your adult life. One thing you will hear over and over again is the importance of learning something new – a new language, skill, hobby or maybe even a whole new career. Lately, I’ve been learning about painting. To be clear about this statement, I am not actually taking art lessons and, while I enjoy doodling as much as the next [More]

January 1st, 2018

Paying attention to the music

By Alan Bodnar Ph.D.

Music is all around us but it took a holiday meal at a memory care center to remind me of its power to restore us to ourselves even if only for as long as we pay attention. My wife and I were there for a special dinner served to the strains of familiar tunes like “She’ll be Comin’ Round the Mountain” and “Yankee Doodle Dandy.” Accustomed as I had become, even at the center, to crooners singing American standards from the big band era and younger vocalists doing easy listening favorites, I made a face somewhere in the middle of [More]

December 1st, 2017

Letting go of the dark

By Alan Bodnar Ph.D.

Somewhere in the middle of the holiday season, we find ourselves looking for light. It is dark by 4:15 p.m. on December 21, the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year. The earth, tilted 23 degrees on its axis, is tilting away from the sun even though we are as close as we will ever get to the source of the light we crave. Outdoors, the evening commute is a string of lights, oncoming white and receding red, while indoors, lamps are lit, fireplaces blaze and we add even more lights to celebrate the winter holidays. Our past experience [More]

November 1st, 2017

When prayers are not enough

By Alan Bodnar Ph.D.

There is nothing worse than a mass shooting like the one in Las Vegas last month, except perhaps how easy it is to forget and to go about our lives as if nothing had ever happened. The killing of 59 (including gunman) and wounding of more than 500 of our neighbors gathered to hear a country music concert is one of those events that should burn itself into our memory and wake us up to the need for change. Since the news broke on night of Oct. 1, the details of the story have been accumulating quickly – 22,000 people [More]