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About Don MacMannis, Ph.D & Debra Manchester-MacMannis, MSW

Don MacMannis, Ph.D. and Debra Manchester MacMannis, M.S.W. are a team both at home and at the office. Married for more than thirty years and parents of two sons, they are psychotherapists who have simultaneously served as directors of the Family Therapy Institute of Santa Barbara. In addition to nationwide lectures on families, they have provided postgraduate training to hundreds of therapists.

How to Not be a “Victim”

“You can either be a victim of the world or an adventurer in search of treasure. It all depends on how you view your life.” -Paulo Coelho How often do you say things out loud or to yourself like: "He makes me feel stupid!" "I'm depressed because she’s always criticizing me." "I’d be happy if my [...]

By | 2018-02-25T14:08:21+00:00 February 25th, 2018|Categories: Uncategorized|1 Comment

Facing the Challenges of Screen Time

“Please tell me what to do about my daughter’s constant use of her cell phone!” “My son throws a fit every time I tell him to get off the computer.” “How many hours a day should I let my kid be online?" Everyone working with kids and teens these days is constantly being asked the same [...]

Who’s the Boss? How to Parent Strong-Willed Kids

Do you have to raise your voice, lecture or repeat yourself to get your kids to listen? Do your children ignore everyday requests when they just don’t feel like it? Have you tried to avoid spanking and yelling but nothing else seems to work? Are you exhausted and upset because your kids seem disrespectful, entitled or [...]

Celebrating the Power of Awe

"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. They to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, are as good as dead: their eyes are closed." ~ Albert Einstein Do you often feel like time’s rushing by and you never [...]

By | 2018-01-19T16:41:36+00:00 January 22nd, 2018|Categories: Uncategorized|0 Comments

Should I Medicate My Child?

People have been bombarded in the last few years with news of the dangers of many well-known psychiatric medications. One of the latest health scares of the past few years has been the abuse and misuse of Adderall, commonly prescribed for Attention Deficit Disorder, among college students. Adderall, an amphetamine, is one of several stimulant medications [...]

By | 2018-01-19T16:10:33+00:00 January 19th, 2018|Categories: ADHD, pharmaceuticals|0 Comments

And the Worst Relationship Killer Is…?

Contempt. It can destroy marriages. It can wound a child's self-image, poison the workplace, and push friends away. If you don't know exactly what is meant by contempt, it’s disdain for another person, openly acting patronizing, insulting, and disrespectful. Contempt is criticism with a twist. When you have contempt for another, you put myself above them. [...]

10 Tips for Handling Holiday Stress

"Gift suggestions: To your enemy, forgiveness. To an opponent, tolerance. To a friend, your heart. To a customer, service. To all, charity. To every child, a good example. To yourself, respect." - Oren Arnold Believe it or not, the holidays rank right up there on the stress scales with asking the boss for a raise, moving, [...]

By | 2017-12-19T12:22:56+00:00 December 18th, 2017|Categories: families, Holidays, parenting|0 Comments