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Archive for October, 2011

Arkansas Remarriage Statistics – Leading the Nation in Remarriage

October 31st, 2011 by Ken Clark, LMFT

As reported in Sunday’s Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, we here in Arkansas can add another trophy to our case (we’ve got the only cheese dip festival in the country, lead the nation in mental illness, and finally seem to have a shot at some respect in the college football world). What else could we possibly lead the way in?

Remarriage.

Apparently, we Arkansas like being married so much, that we do it over and over again. In fact, according to the most recent U.S. census, 18% of Arkansans over the age of 15 (yeah, that’s a weird place to cut off the stats), have been married twice. An additional 7.8% have been married three times or more.

While this may sound a little shocking at first glance, I consider this stat good news for Arkansans. It means that for every four adults you meet, at least one has suffered through a marriage that didn’t work. It means that you’re not alone and not the first. Hopefully, knowing that removes some of the shame and stigma from seeking out help, whether it is through marriage counseling or therapy, your church’s pastor, or by simply resolving with your spouse that something needs to change.

If your marriage is struggling, you’re not the only one. Heck, you’re one of the crowd here in Arkansas.

Consider getting help before your marriage becomes a statistic. If we at Chenal Family Therapy PLC don’t seem to be a good fit, there’s plenty of other great therapists and counselors out there. Just pick up the phone… everyone in our field is here to help.

 

About the Author:

Ken Clark is a Licensed Associate Marriage and Family Therapist in Little Rock, AR. He works with couples, families, and individuals dealing with all types of relationship and behavioral issues, especially couples considering a divorce. To schedule an appointment with Ken, you can call 501-786-9970 or email him at Ken@ChenalTherapy.com.

To receive future updates to this blog, click here. To receive a weekly email with Ken’s available session times, click here.

The contents of this post are the copyrighted (2011) insights of Ken Clark and may not be re-used or re-published without his express permission. Linking to this article however, is greatly appreciated and encouraged!

 

 

 

 

Category: Divorce, Remarriage | No Comments »

Marriage and Family Therapist Availability – Week of 10/31/2011

October 30th, 2011 by Ken Clark, LMFT

Here are my available slots for marriage, couples, or individual therapy at my Little Rock office for the coming three weeks. If you’d like one of these time slots, email me or give me a call (501-786-9970). These slots are first-come, first-serve. Please do not just show up!

Additionally, Rachel Pinto (our unlicensed graduate intern, finishing her practicum at John Brown University) has daytime availability for counseling sessions on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at a discounted rate.

 

This Week:

Call 501-786-9970 or email Ken Clark for available session times.

 

Next Week:

Monday (11/7) – Noon, 1 PM, 3 PM, 4 PM, or 6 PM
Tuesday (11/8) – 3 PM or 9 PM
Wednesday (11/9) – 10 AM, 11 AM, or Noon
Thurs (11/10) – 3 PM, 4 PM, 6 PM, 7 PM, or 9 PM
Friday (11/11) – 1 PM, 2 PM, 3 PM or 5 PM

 

Two Weeks:

Monday (11/14) – Noon, 1 PM, 3 PM, 4 PM, 5 PM, or 6 PM
Tuesday (11/15) – 8 AM, 3 PM, 4 PM, 6 PM, 8 PM or 9 PM
Wednesday (11/16) – 10 AM, 11 AM, Noon, 4 PM or 5 PM
Thurs (11/17) – 8 AM, 3 PM, 4 PM, 5 PM, 6 PM, 8 PM or 9 PM
Friday (11/18) – 8 AM, 1 PM, 2 PM, 3 PM, 4 PM or 5 PM

Category: Counseling, therapy | No Comments »

Little Rock Family Night Idea – That 80′s Show @ Wildwood Park

October 28th, 2011 by Ken Clark, LMFT

Here’s another cheap family night idea that pre-teens and teens are sure to enjoy, while also rekindling some fond memories for mom and dad…

That 80′s Show is a professional musical production put on by the Arkansas Rep, featuring a cast of local teens and preteens. As the name implies, the musical takes a tongue and cheek look at some of the best music and worst fashions of the 1980′s, complete with spandex, big hair, and imitations of 1980′s icons like the Church Lady and Bruce Springsteen.

Our family saw it this last summer and absolutely loved it. It was like watching a family-friendly version of MTV and left our kids asking some hilarious questions about how my wife and I actually looked and acted “back then.” All in all, a great night filled with a ton of laughter and mind-boggling conversations with our kids.

If you’ve got time for a meal before the show, be sure to check out the new Big Orange Burger in the Chenal Promenade. They’ve got a great selection of gourmet burgers and their garlic truffle fries are to die for.

That 80′s Show finishes up its run November 3rd and 4th with shows at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., as well as an a 5 p.m. show on November 5th at 5 p.m. You can buy tickets for $15-25 online through the Arkansas Rep’s box office.

Enjoy!

 

About the Author:

Ken Clark is a Licensed Associate Marriage and Family Therapist in Little Rock, AR. He works with couples, families, and individuals dealing with all types of relationship and behavioral issues, especially couples and families hanging on by a thread. To schedule an appointment with Ken, you can call 501-786-9970 or email him at Ken@ChenalTherapy.com.

To receive future updates to this blog, click here. To receive a weekly email with Ken’s available session times, click here.

The contents of this post are the copyrighted (2011) insights of Ken Clark and may not be re-used or re-published without his express permission. Linking to this article however, is greatly appreciated and encouraged!

 

Category: Family Night | No Comments »

Sex Therapy 101 – The Passionate Marriage by David Schnarch

October 25th, 2011 by Ken Clark, LMFT

I’m often asked for book recommendations by the clients and students I work with. In particular, when it comes to sex therapy, many couples who normally feel very comfortable talking about other aspects of their relationships, prefer the anonymity of reading a book in the privacy of their own home.

Few books have impacted what I do as a marriage therapist, especially when it comes to sex therapy, as much as David Schnarch’s classic, The Passionate Marriage. The book provides an incredibly insightful view into the different emotional components of sex and how they meet certain needs for each partner. Best of all, it does so using real life case studies from Schnarch’s own practice, helping to ensure that there is something in the book that almost every reader can relate to.

Fair warning though… Even though the book does not contain any graphic pictures, the language in the book is not for the faint of heart. Since many of the struggles experienced by couples in the bedroom are expressed in their own words, you can expect to read a few things that are going to make you blush.

There’s a good chance you’ll find the book at the Little Rock Barnes and Noble, but if you’re feeling shy about walking through the store with it tucked under your arm, you can always order it off Amazon.com.

 

About the Author:

Ken Clark is a Licensed Associate Marriage and Family Therapist in Little Rock, AR. He works with couples, families, and individuals dealing with all types of relationship and behavioral issues, including sexual intimacy issues. To schedule an appointment with Ken, you can call 501-786-9970 or email him at Ken@ChenalTherapy.com.

To receive future updates to this blog, click here. To receive a weekly email with Ken’s available session times, click here.

The contents of this post are the copyrighted (2011) insights of Ken Clark and may not be re-used or re-published without his express permission. Linking to this article however, is greatly appreciated and encouraged!

 

Category: Couples, Sex | No Comments »

Therapist Availability for the Week of 10-24-2011

October 23rd, 2011 by Ken Clark, LMFT

Here are Ken Clark’s available slots for the coming two weeks. If you’d like one of these time slots, email me at Ken@ChenalTherapy.com or give me a call (501-786-9970). 

Have a great week!

This Week:
Monday (10/24) – No Openings
Tuesday (10/25) – 6 PM
Wednesday (10/26) – 10 AM
Thurs (10/27) -  3 PM
Friday (10/28) – 1 PM, 2 PM, or 3 PM 

Next Week:
Monday (10/31) – 4 PM or 5 PM
Tuesday (11/1) – 3 PM, 4 PM, 6 PM, 8 PM, or 9 PM
Wednesday (11/2) – 11 AM, 4 PM, 5 PM, or 6 PM
Thurs (11/3) -  3 PM, 4 PM, 5 PM, 6 PM, 8 PM, or 9 PM
Friday (11/4) – 1 PM, 2 PM, 3 PM, or 5 PM

Additionally, Rachel Pinto (our new graduate intern, finishing her practicum at John Brown University) has daytime availability on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at a rate of $50 per session.

 

Category: Counseling, therapy | No Comments »

Little Rock Family Night Idea – Shrek the Musical @ Robinson Music Hall

October 21st, 2011 by Ken Clark, LMFT

If it’s been a while since your last “family date,” Shrek the Musical is rolling into Little Rock from October 28-30, 2011. With tickets as cheap as $27 per seat, it’s one of those once a year opportunities in Little Rock that you’ve got to take advantage of.

If it’s your first time taking your family to see a musical theater production and you’re nervous about the experience, don’t be. This isn’t the opera. It’s a musical about an ogre with bad manners and gross habits. I doubt you’ll see too many limos, tuxedos, or plates of caviar. Just a lot of families and a lot of laughter.

If you’re going to be taking younger kids (under 10) who will have a tough time holding still or might be prone to “whispering” during the show, consider going during one of the matinee performances (2 PM on Saturday or Sunday). These shows will inevitably be filled with younger kids who couldn’t stay up late to make the 7:30 PM shows. Make a point of sitting in the balcony, where you can expect those around you to be in the same boat and especially forgiving.

Finish the event with some pizza at Iriana’s or Gusano’s, both of which are in walking distance of the theater, and you’ll have a great memory and expose your kids to the arts for right around $125 (for a family of four).

Tip for dads: If you’ve got a son or sons in the family, turn it into a “date with mom / sisters” where you show him how to take out a lady, open doors for them, make a woman feel special, etc. Not only will it be a teachable moment, but one that will probably score you some major points with the wife. :)

Links:

Robinson Music Center Box Office

Iriana’s Pizza

Gusano’s Pizza

 

About the Author:

Ken Clark is a Licensed Associate Marriage and Family Therapist in Little Rock, AR. He works with couples, families, and individuals dealing with all types of relationship and behavioral issues, especially couples and families hanging on by a thread. To schedule an appointment with Ken, you can call 501-786-9970 or email him at Ken@ChenalTherapy.com.

To receive future updates to this blog, click here. To receive a weekly email with Ken’s available session times, click here.

The contents of this post are the copyrighted (2011) insights of Ken Clark and may not be re-used or re-published without his express permission. Linking to this article however, is greatly appreciated and encouraged!

 

Category: Family Night | No Comments »

Couple’s Therapy Toolbox – Maintenance vs. Surplus Time – Part 1

October 17th, 2011 by Ken Clark, LMFT

I’m sure a lot of other marriage therapists and counselors have their own version of this, but here’s my unique spin on it…

One of the biggest “communication problems” that many couples seem to have, is not a lack of communication about their issues, but rather that they (or at least one spouse) talk about their issues too much.

How could that be possible? How could talking about your issues ever be a bad thing?

When we stop to consider that most couples fall in love in an environment that is filled with positivity, hope, and dreaming about their futures, it’s easy to see how marinating in the day-to-day issues of life can suck the spark right out of a relationship. If you’re in a relationship where all you ever seem to talk about are what details need to be taken care of, or what is going wrong with your family, marriage, or kids, then you know what I’m talking about.

Many good, romantic relationships become mediocre “roommate” relationships because their communication becomes a broken record of discussions about finances, extended family, work issues, etc. In fact, this often goes on so long that many couples forget how to talk about anything else but these issues. Sadly, many attempts at connection through date nights and romantic weekends regularly get overrun by accidental fights over these topics.

For those of you saying “Amen!” as you read this, there’s a fairly easy solution. It starts with mentally identifying and separating what we talk about and when into two unique discussions. I call them maintenance discussions and surplus discussions. Even more importantly, I’ve labeled the times we have these discussions as maintenance times and surplus times.

Maintenance discussions are those that pertain to the details of life I’ve mentioned throughout the post. They’re a necessary part of any relationship, especially for couples juggling kids and extended family members. They help us to maintain the functioning of our lives and households.

On the other hand, surplus discussions are those that add to the depth and richness of our relationships, usually through shared experiences, authentic and spontaneous laughter, and the sharing of deep thoughts. They help us to enjoy and further appreciate the relationships, partners, and families that we have. Additionally, they create a surplus of positive emotion that allows us to better tolerate (and even enjoy) the maintenance discussions of life.

All healthy relationships need both types, but in the right amount and at the right times. At a most basic level, that’s one of the reasons that couples therapy is often so helpful. It forces a couple to do what they often otherwise fail to do – compartmentalize their maintenance discussions to an hour or two a week in their therapist’s office. This naturally frees up some time and energy for more surplus discussions to naturally occur, which helps rebuild the relationship.

In next Monday’s “Toolbox” post, we’ll take a deeper look at the risk many couples face of letting these maintenance discussions take priority over surplus discussions and propose an easy solution to protect designated surplus times (date nights, romantic weekends, family trips, etc.) from being invaded by maintenance discussions.

About the Author:
Ken Clark is a Licensed Associate Marriage and Family Therapist in Little Rock, AR. He works with couples, families, and individuals dealing with all types of relationship and behavioral issues, especially couples and families hanging on by a thread. To schedule an appointment with Ken, you can call 501-786-9970 or email him at Ken@ChenalTherapy.com.

To receive future updates to this blog, click here. To sign up to receive a weekly email with Ken’s available session times, click here.

The contents of this post are the copyrighted (2011) insights of Ken Clark and may not be re-used or re-published without his express permission. Linking to this article however, is greatly appreciated and encouraged!

Category: Communication, Couples | No Comments »

Therapist Availability for Week of 10-17-11

October 16th, 2011 by Ken Clark, LMFT

Here are my available slots for marriage, couples, or individual therapy at my Little Rock office for the coming two weeks. If you’d like one of these time slots, email me or give me a call (501-786-9970). These slots are first-come, first-serve. Please do not just show up!

Additionally, Rachel Pinto (our unlicensed graduate intern, finishing her practicum at John Brown University) has daytime availability for counseling sessions on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at a discounted rate.

This Week:
Monday (10/17) – 12 PM
Tuesday (10/18) – No Openings
Wednesday (10/19) – 8 AM
Thurs (10/20) – 9 PM
Friday (10/21) – 2 PM, 3 PM or 4 PM

Next Week:
Monday (10/24) – 3 PM, 4 PM, or 5 PM
Tuesday (10/25) – 8 AM, 4 PM, or 9 PM
Wednesday (10/26) – 12 PM
Thurs (10/27) – 4 PM, 7 PM, or 9 PM
Friday (10/28) – 1 PM, 2 PM, or 3 PM

Category: therapy | No Comments »

Directory of Little Rock AA Meetings

October 15th, 2011 by Ken Clark, LMFT

While many people feel like attending an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting is too embarrassing or too cliche, it remains one of the most effective tools in helping and alcoholic overcome their addiction.

The power, in my opinion, lies in the concept of universality. In a nutshell, that’s the idea that everyone in the group is bound by not just the same addiction, but by the same struggles, frustrations, setbacks, and successes surrounding that addiction.

I love that, in virtually every AA meeting, an alcoholic can interact with someone ahead of them in their recovery, as well as someone who has just recently made a decision to get sober. In other words, there is always someone to encourage and someone to be encouraged by.

If you or someone you love has an alcohol problem, PLEASE just visit an AA meeting. The meetings are anonymous, free, and plentiful.

To view a list of upcoming Little Rock AA meetings, check out the website for the Arkansas Central Office of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Category: Addiction | No Comments »

Arkansas Ranks in Worst Five States for Mental Illness

October 14th, 2011 by Ken Clark, LMFT

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has just released its state-by-state rankings of mental illness in the United States for 2008 and 2009 (these things always run a few years behind).

Sadly, Arkansas ranks 2nd worst for percentage of the population with a “serious” mental illnesses (6.90%) and 10th worst in the “any mental illness” category (21.3%). On a combined basis (serious mental plus any mental illness), Arkansas ranks in the worst five states along with Idaho, Rhode Island, West Virginia, and Utah.

For those interested, the states with the lowest combined rates of mental illness are Alaska, Maryland, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, and Virginia.

To see the entire report, including a state-by-state listing, visit www.SAMHSA.gov.

Category: Arkansas | No Comments »