Therapist couple gives tips on building strong family ties

Don and Deb MacMannis Credit: Provided
Don and Deb MacMannis
Credit: Provided

Parents might often feel they are running a daily gauntlet, from backpacks and breakfast in the morning to bedtime tuck-ins. But every now and again, parents should take a few minutes to check in with each other and their children.

One therapist couple, Don and Debra MacMannis, have 10 tips in a new book they say are needed to create lasting bonds called “How’s Your Family Really Doing?”

Don, a child psychologist who also writes music for children, says the book was inspired after 35 years of families reaching out for help, often asking the same questions.

The couple gave Metro some advice on how families can form stronger ties, starting with taking time to connect:

1. Catch moments in between — like driving in the car, eating a snack, walking the dog — to share thoughts and feelings with your loved ones.

2. Too many parents give all the love and attention to the kids. Make a conscious decision to be more affectionate with your partner. Remember the early days of courtship when you held hands, kissed and hugged hello and goodbye (and then some), shared back rubs or cuddled up on the couch? Do that again.

3. Deeply listening to one another can be a profound way to reconnect if distance has crept between you. If you are the listener, make eye contact, take deep breaths to keep yourself calm, centered and quiet, and remember not to give unsolicited advice.

4. Words and gestures can also be affectionate. We obviously feel more loved when complimented rather than criticized. Use pet names like sweetheart or honey, and don’t forget to say the precious words “I love you.”

5. Use voicemail, email or texts to send your love or to check in on how your partner’s day is going. Even little gestures help us feel loved.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Mutant worms stay sober, even on alcohol

U.S. researchers have developed "mutant worms" that do not get drunk by alcohol, a breakthrough that could lead to new treatment for people trying to quit drinking

Local

K-9 nose helps capture $150K in cocaine at…

A furry, four-legged security agent helped authorities stop an illegal cocaine shipment from sneaking past JFK customs.

National

Minnesota man asked to leave Southwest flight after…

A man and his two sons were asked to leave a Southwest Airlines flight after the man sent a tweet complaining about being treated rudely by a gate agent.

National

Man sues hospital after surprise penis amputation

An Alabama man who went in to a hospital last month for a circumcision awoke after surgery to find his penis had been amputated, his lawyer said on Thursday.

Movies

Review: Brett Ratner's big 'Hercules' movie is small…

The latest "Hercules," starring Dwayne Johnson as the half-god beefcake of Greek myth, strips its hero and tale of most of its fantastical elements.

Arts

Scientists recreate world's smallest Monet copy

Scientists have reproduced a famous Impressionist painting using nano-printing, to create what has been described as the world's smallest work of art. Reworked at the…

Television

Jerry Seinfeld is ambidextrous, and other Reddit AMA…

See some of the weirder highlights of Jerry Seinfeld's recent Reddit AMA.

Going Out

Grab a pedestrian and start dancing at What…

As a New Yorker, I’ve mastered the art of focusing my gaze straight ahead. Though it occasionally piques my interest, the absurdities that play out…

NFL

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player…

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player rankings

U.S. Soccer

NYCFC announce signing of Frank Lampard

The tease of a big signing Thursday by new MLS side NYCFC ended up being one rumored for weeks. England midfielder Frank Lampard agreed to…

NBA

NBA great LeBron James sends 800 cupcake apologies…

By Kim PalmerCLEVELAND (Reuters) - NBA star LeBron James, whose recent return to the Cleveland Cavaliers in his home state of Ohio sparked a frenzy…

NFL

Jerry Reese confident with Giants, skipping countdown clocks…

Last year, Giants GM Jerry Reese installed a countdown clock in the locker room to inspire Big Blue to play in their own stadium for Super Bowl XLVIII.

Tech

Forget Wi-Fi: Li-Fi could be the future

Li-Fi technology – developed by Mexican company Sisoft – is wireless internet connectivity using specialized LED light.

Tech

Weather app Climendo might be the most accurate…

The wait for a truly accurate weather forecast could finally be over thanks to a nifty new app called Climendo.

Tech

Napkin Table puts focus off the phone and…

Michael Jan, a design student at Tunghai University in Taiwan, has invented a serviette-picnic blanket hybrid called the Napkin Table.

Style

Essie's new Color Boutique

Essie launches high-tech kiosks at major airports and malls across the country.