Featured In The News

Why Slow Parenting Is Right for My Family

by Sharon Brandwein | August 20, 2019

“When parents allow children the space for trial and error, children become adept at solving problems independently. These children rely on their internal resources to creatively find solutions. They do not expect or anticipate an adult ‘swooping in’ to rescue them,” says Dana Dorfman, Ph.D., a psychotherapist and parenting specialist based in New York. “Independent problem-solving builds confidence, resourcefulness, and a sense of mastery. “

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‘Cocooning’ parents want family to stay the hell away from newborns

by Raquel Laneri | August 20, 2019

It’s called cocooning, and it’s a common practice for adopted children that allows them to bond with their new parents. But it’s gotten more popular in the past decade among other families, says Midtown psychotherapist Dana Dorfman — partly, she thinks, because more generous parental leave policies for dads “amplify the desire or the need to really bond as a family.”

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Parents, stop fighting in front of your kids — or at least take this advice on how to do it better

by Nicole Fabian-Weber | Aug. 6, 2019

“It’s important for children to be exposed to loving people who disagree since it’s an inevitable part of any relationship,” says Dana Dorfman, Ph.D., psychotherapist and co-host of the podcast “2 Moms on the Couch.”

Dorfman notes that when children never see their parents fighting, they can develop unrealistic expectations about adult relationships and may become anxious when they experience disagreements of their own in the future. 

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Summer Depression is Real — How to Deal With Those Not So Sunny Days

by Brianne Hogan | Aug 02, 2019

In the summer, people are out and about, and generally busy, which can cause us to criticize our own social life or lack thereof. “Observing family vacations, couples’ strolling in the park, and groups dining outside serve as unavoidable reminders of what may feel absent in one’s life,” Dr. Dana Dorfman, PhD, psychotherapist and co-host of the podcast “2 Moms on the Couch” tells SheKnows. “Thus, summer exacerbates feelings of aloneness. The romanticization of summer love contributes to feelings of sadness and isolation as well.”

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5 Ways Dads Can Avoid The Loneliness That Comes With Being A New Parent, According to Experts

by Lizzy Francis | July 25, 2019

“The first thing is identifying it and knowing that you are feeling lonely. Once you identify the feeling, then you can understand where the need comes from and then figure out ways to satisfy it. It could very well be something as simple as ‘I need to play basketball on Sundays’ or it could be, like, ‘I’m feeling disconnected from my wife and want more time with her,’ to even just needing to ‘share with her where I am emotionally.’ Some men experience loneliness sexually. Physical intimacy can sometimes satisfy them emotionally. So, understanding what the feeling is, where the need originates, and what it is that would help satisfy that need would be enormous. It could very well be that they need to connect with other dads or to just be with people who are in similar situations or the response to a loss of a parent. It could be that reconnecting with siblings helps satisfy it.” — Dr. Dana Dorfman, psychotherapist, LCSW

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What to Do When You Feel Lonely, According to 5 Therapists

by Lizzy Francis | Jul 16 2019

Some men experience loneliness sexually. Physical intimacy can sometimes satisfy them emotionally. So understanding what the feeling is, where the need originates, and what it is that would help satisfy that need would be enormous. It could very well be that they need to connect with other dads, or to just be with people who are in similar situations, or the response to a loss of a parent. It could be that reconnecting with siblings helps satisfy it.” — Dr. Dana Dorfman, psychotherapist, LCSW

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How To Deal With A Toxic Mother & Not Let Passive-Aggressive Comments Affect You, According To Experts

by Jordan Bissell | July 15, 2019

“Actions speak louder than words,” Dr. Dana Dorfman, PhD, a psychotherapist who specializes in parenting issues and co-hosts the podcast “2 Moms on the Couch,”tells Bustle. “There are many nonverbal and behavioral cues that mom gives to indicate how she’s feeling.” Although “nothing’s wrong” might not seem like an inherently passive-aggressive phrase, if her physical cues don’t match up, it’s probably not harmless. “When a mother behaves in ways that indicate her anger (i.e. withdraws, becomes silent, or sulks) but denies the incongruity between her statement and her behavior, it is passive-aggressive,” Dorfman says.

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Psychologists Answer Harry Met Sally‘s Famous Q: Can Men and Women Really Be Just Friends?

by Molly Longman | July 12, 2019

For example, Dana Dorfman, Ph.D., psychotherapist and co-host of the podcast 2 Moms on the Couch, says it’s possible for men and women who are attracted to the opposite sex to be friends — but they’ll at least consider taking the relationship to the next level.

“I think it’s inevitable it will cross at least one person’s mind,” Dorman says. “Part of friendship is there being an emotional attraction to the other person. Whether it necessarily translates to a sexual relationship is another story, but I think it would be very difficult for it not to at least be a consideration.”

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My Wife Is Set on Having Another Baby. I’m Not. What Do We Do?

by Lizzy Francis | Jul 09 2019

If one partner is completely unwilling to discuss it at one point, but would be open to revisiting it in six months, there is value in setting a time to talk about it in six months, and that’s okay. Couples should be sensitive to when and where they are talking about it. Giving space and room for each partner to be able to express themselves in the conversation is validating. Show understanding of where that partner is coming from. Ask them, “What is it that makes you want what you want or don’t want?” Each partner can glean a deeper understanding of where the other partner is emotionally. This could require a grieving process of the fantasy of what one parent had hoped for. — Dr. Dana Dorfman, MSW, PhD

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When Parenting Sucks: The 12 Worst Parts of the Best Job

by Danielle Simone Brand | June 25, 2019

Though power struggles can rear their ugly heads at literally any point, the two most common times that parents bring up are toddler and teen years. Dr. Dana Dorfman, psychotherapist and co-host of the podcast 2 Moms on the Couch, reassures angry or confused parents that these behaviors are developmentally appropriate at those times of life.

“During toddlerhood and adolescence, children experience strong needs to separate from their parents,” she says. “Due to a series of factors, children and teens are unable to express this separation in a graceful and rational way — the emotions are strong and often directed toward the parents (from whom they are separating).”

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7 Things Relationship Experts Want You To Know If You’ve Cheated On A Partner

by Jordan Bissell | 6/25/19

If you’ve cheated on your partner, you might think that the relationship is over. But this isn’t necessarily the case. “While an affair may be a deal breaker for some relationships, others can work through the crisis and use it as an inflection point where changes can be made,” Dr. Dana Dorfman, PhD, a psychotherapist and co-host of the podcast 2 Moms on the Couch, tells Bustle. “With a lot of emotional work, examination, self-reflection (individually and as a couple) a relationship may withstand this betrayal.” Surprisingly, though, whether you and your partner decide to part ways after infidelity or not, both of you may want to get counseling. “I strongly encourage each member of the dyad to seek individual therapy,” Dorfman says.

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Why Do We Love True Crime As Entertainment? This is interesting.

by Brittany Anas | June 22, 2019

“It is normal, healthy, and often adaptive to be curious and interested in true crime,” Dr. Dana Dorfman, Ph.D., psychotherapist and co-host of the podcast 2 Moms on the Couch told me.

It May Help Us Feel Prepared

True crimes introduce us to “worst-case scenarios,” sharing a variety of ways that people can be victimized. These scenarios, psychologists say, allow us to unconsciously rehearse “What would I do in this situation?” or “How would I feel if I were part of this story?”

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Medicaid Expansion Tied to Lower Rates of Child Neglect, but Not Abuse

by George W. Citroner  | June 19, 2019

Commenting on the findings for Medscape Medical News, Dana Dorfman, PhD, a New York City-based child, adolescent and adult psychotherapist who was not involved with the current study, said there is “no doubt” that Medicaid expansion had a positive effect on children’s welfare. In addition to the obvious advantages of health, medical availability, and accessibility to healthcare for impoverished families, there are other, more nuanced factors that contribute to improvements in mental and physical health, she noted.

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When Toddlers Can Remember Life Before Their Sibling Was Born, According to Experts

by Cat Bowen | June 12, 2019

Dr. Dorfman says that “Memory researchers report that small children can retain memories from around 20 months, though they typically fade between the ages of 4 and 7 years old.” That tracks with my son, who really started losing those early memories in the past few years; now, they’re all but gone. She continues, saying, “Infants and toddlers do have memory systems, but many factors influence whether they are stored in long term memory.” Dorfman notes that one of these factors is “the emotional significance of the event,” such as the birth of a sibling. Also, as memory is developing, so is their grasp of language, and their ability to manipulate that language into coherent conversations surrounding an event.

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What to Do When Your Spouse Is Fighting With Family

by Lizzy Francis | Jun 06 2019

So, you’re out to dinner with the in-laws, presiding over your chicken piccata in relative peace when, because of an ill-said phrase, comment, or opinion, a fight begins to brew. This happens. Families have a lot of history and a level of comfort that allows mild disagreements or old thorns to appear. As the third party in those cases, it’s important, per Dorfman, that you stay quiet and make sure you don’t put your foot in your mouth or embarrass yourself or your partner by jumping in right away. Even if your instinct is to immediately defend your partner, it’s crucial to be patient and wait to see how the conversation unfolds.

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Experts Say If These 9 Things Happen During Intimacy, Your Relationship May Be Toxic

by Jordan Bissell | May 14, 2019

Not everyone likes the same things in bed, and that’s totally OK. But if our partner ever criticizes, mocks, or exposes your healthy sexual desires or preferences, this is toxic behavior, Dr. Dana Dorfman, PhD, psychotherapist and co-host of the podcast 2 Moms on the Couch, tells Bustle. “By virtue of being separate people, partners’ desires and preferences differ and are not always aligned,” she says. “Healthy sexual relationships require emotionally healthy foundations like trust, vulnerability, and safety.” If you are consistently teased about what you want sexually, the relationship is not emotionally healthy. If you still feel safe with your partner, you might consider going to couples therapy, but don’t feel compelled to try to make things work if the relationship is harming you in any way.

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Here’s Exactly Why You Cry During Sex and What You Can Do About It

by Candice Jalili | May 8, 2019

Psychotherapist Dana Dorfman, PhD, co-host of the podcast 2 Moms on the Couch, says there are a few reasons why you might be crying during sex. “Sex is highly intimate and can evoke strong feelings,” explains Dorfman. “A person could be experiencing intense feelings of love and closeness.” These feelings of intense closeness result in an “oxytocin rush,” which she says “can induce the physiological response of crying.”

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