Loving couple, successful relationship

An Electronic Mental Health Newsletter from Joel I. Kimmel, Ph.D., P.A. & Associates                                Volume 18, Number 4

One of the most common reasons why people come to see us professionally is because of relationship problems. This may be between spouses, children and parents, family members, or colleagues at work.

Often, they are angry, hurt, frustrated, and depressed but are hopeful that a solution can be found.

These patients are wise enough to know that they need professional help to resolve their issues and to learn what it takes to have successful relationships.

Having a positive relationship is a beautiful journey that requires constant care, understanding, and effort. It is not a given that when two people enter into a relationship, it will automatically be a good one.

Rather, like anything else that is worthwhile, it requires ongoing attention, caring, support, and understanding.

Relationships do have conflicts but working them out can strengthen the positive bond between two people. Unfortunately, conflicts often contain anger which affects a person’s ability to think clearly.

However, with understanding that the other person is not out to hurt you, the anger can dissipate, and the conflicts resolve.

It is also a good idea to build up mutual bonding experiences since they will strengthen a relationship and prevent little conflicts from becoming big ones.

Remember, successful relationships require ongoing effort, mutual respect, and a willingness to learn and adapt. Cherish the journey together!

Our e-Letter this month focuses on how to have a successful relationship. Dr. Kimmel’s blog is about Media News Addiction and can be found here.

We hope you find the enclosed information helpful and interesting. We also thank you for reading our e-Letters and for the positive and compassionate comments we have received.


One of the greatest problems our society faces is the ability to get along with others. Whether it be within marriages, friendships, work or other relationships, hurt and unresolved conflicts lead to hatred, anger, disruption, and emotional damage.

Most of us would agree that our society has become polarized, which seems like a trend that has been going on for decades. It has gotten incredibly more difficult to have an independent decision.

In fact, if you don’t agree with one side, you often get shamed, doxed, protested against, or discounted.

Politics, competition, and being better than the next person have served to separate and turn people against each other.

The only time that it seems like people can rally together is when there is some type of tragedy such as hurricanes or school shootings. But why does it have to be that way?

Against this background, it is more difficult to have successful relationships.

What makes relationships work, however, involves respect, mutual trust, communication, understanding, and effort.

Most likely, in your relationship, your partner is not your enemy; they just see things differently than you do or they are hurt from previous interactions.

Having this understanding and being able to work together as a team can enormously strengthen your relationship.

We offer the following information:

Every couple needs to argue now and then, just to prove that the relationship
is strong enough to survive. Long-term relationships, the ones that matter,
are all about weathering the peaks and the valleys.”… Nicholas Sparks


  • Relationships like anything else need to grow; A healthy and fulfilling relationship requires consistent effort and attention
  • Mutual Trust, Respect, Communication, and Commitment are vital to maintaining any relationship:
  • Mutual trust is the ability to know that your partner is there for you, that they “have your back,” and that they will not hurt you
  • Respect means having a high regard for the other person and not treating them in hurtful or deprecating ways even if they disagree with you
  • Communication may be difficult but necessary: it allows for partners to be on the same team by clearing up misunderstandings, misperceptions, conflicts, etc.
  • Commitment can show respect for one’s ideas and also allows for the building and strengthening of relationships
  • According to Dr. John Gottman, contempt or disrespect by either or both partners is the best predictor of divorce
  • The ability to resolve conflicts is also one of the strongest predictors of successful relationships
  • Many arguments can be resolved by recognizing that one partner is not intentionally trying to hurt the other but just disagrees


  • Be friends and not just partners
  • Set a weekly time to regularly connect and check in with each other
  • Make a conscious effort to be fully present; show genuine interest in their well-being and actively listen
  • Think in terms of “we” not “me”
  • Use words that are not aggressive, hurtful, or disrespectful and share your thoughts, feelings, and concerns
  • Argue constructively; conflict is normal so avoid hurtful words or actions
  • Focus on understanding each other’s feelings and finding solutions
  • Listen without judgment and create a safe space for both of you to express your hurts, fears, and anger
  • Set clear and firm boundaries so that each partner takes responsibility for their own feelings and actions and not the others
  • Explore new interests together; keep your relationship dynamic by discovering shared interests like a new hobby, exploring, or embarking on an adventure
  • Physical touch is vital as intimacy goes beyond the bedroom; hold hands, hug, kiss, and express affection
  • Seek professional help if you are unable to establish or maintain successful relationships
    Call us at 954 755-2885 or email us at [email protected]
            Joel I. Kimmel, Ph.D. P.A. and Associates
            5551 N University Drive, Suite 202
            Coral Springs FL 33067

    As always, we are interested in your thoughts. If you would like to respond to this e-Letter, email [email protected] and we will publish them next month.

    Till May…

    The information provided in this electronic newsletter is not a substitute for professional treatment. It is the opinions of the writers and is provided solely for educational purposes. For mental health care, seek a qualified professional.

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    Copyright © 2024 by Joel I. Kimmel, Ph.D. P.A. and Associates.