As part of The Family Institute's mission, we are committed to using clinical science to improve the effectiveness of our interventions. Clinical Science Insights, a quarterly publication series, distills our research expertise in a way that is relevant to both clinical practice and everyday life.
In this forum, our postdoctoral fellows, clinical staff and affiliates share their expert knowledge on a variety of topics relevant to families today – from child development, to innovative treatments for depression and anxiety, to best parenting practices, to the latest research on what works in couples therapy – just to name a few. These succinct summaries of the latest empirical research and theory on issues relevant to families are written for professional and lay audiences alike.
Navigating Mental Health Crises
One of the many things we’ve learned over the past two years is that crises happen. And no matter the type of crisis, knowing what to expect can help. This is especially key in responding to mental health crises, which have many moving parts and often involve the emergency room. In fact, from 2006 to 2014, one in eight visits to the ER were due to mental health or substance use — a number that has only increased during the pandemic.
How to Make Sense of Procrastination
Imagine sitting down to complete a task you’ve been putting off. Maybe it’s a big task with lots of different parts; maybe it feels overwhelming, and you don’t know where to start; maybe it’s a task that feels mundane and that you have to do frequently. What emotions come up when you imagine yourself getting started on this task? What thoughts? One thing is for certain: We’ve all been in this situation, when the thought of starting a dreaded task is so unpleasant that we’d…
When Politics & Culture Disrupt Family Relationships
Do you love someone whose beliefs are so different from your own that it feels nearly impossible to bridge the gap? Therapist Aaron Cohn, Ph.D., LMFT, poses this question in his powerful new paper on navigating disrupted family relationships. Following the pandemic and the most divisive presidential election in recent history, many of us are intimately familiar with difficult family dynamics. But LGBTQ+ individuals, including Dr. Cohn himself, have faced this challenge for…
Disconnection During a Pandemic
Many couples are struggling within their relationships right now. The added pressures from the effects of the pandemic, financial, emotional, recreational, have hit couples hard. People are simply trying to get through the day, let alone finding time for connection. Given all of the stressors that are occurring simultaneously, couples may have a hard time managing their relationship. Most of the focus is needed for childcare or work- related responsibilities, leaving…
The Significance of the Sibling Relationship When Coming Out as Lesbian, Gay & Bisexual
Casey Gamboni, Ph.D., explores the importance of sibling and family relationships for the LGB population and shares his story of coming out to his brother. Though recent statistics indicate that 85-90% of the world population has a sibling, sibling relationships are the most neglected relationships in psychological research and practice.
How to Utilize the Research About Children and Screen Time
In this edition, Benjamin Rosen, Ph.D., explores the complexity of the existing research on the effects of increased digital media consumption on children and adolescents. He argues that while some concerns are valid, others are often overgeneralized and sensationalized. The situation is not as dire as some fear and contextual factors matter.
The Marriage Benefit
It has long been understood that there is a connection between long-term relationships and health. There is also a reciprocal relationship between marriage and health, where not only is marriage affected by illness, but the quality of marriage can actually influence the course of an illness. Dr. Sher explains why it’s important to include the spouse/intimate partner in both physical and mental health treatment of the ill spouse, and outlines the three primary ways that The…
Emerging Adults’ Relationships with Their Parents
In this issue of Clinical Science Insights, Jacob Goldsmith, Ph.D., explores Jeffrey Arnett’s theory of emerging adulthood, highlights potential problems that emerging adults and their families may encounter, and suggests some general guidelines for what parents can do to help and lay the foundation for a healthy parent-adult-child relationship.