Psychology Today

Articles from Vol. 47, No. 6, November/December

A Death by Design
THERE SHE WAS in her Paris pieda-terre, lounging regally on the arm of a cream tweed sofa, her legs stretching to infinity. There she was around town-London, Paris, New York- at six foot three, towering over boyfriend Mick Jagger, her porcelain finish...
A Man of Many Fathers
SONS LOOK TO their fathers for support and example; they need to be nourished, in structea, and inspired. But when fathers fall short, sons often look for father figures, in life, history, or myth, to supply what their fleshand-blood fathers didn't.Abraham...
Character Assassination
FOR ONE-THIRD OF the year, in any given place in die Englishspeaking world, Brian Little is a man on a mission. That mission, to deliver an inspiring lecture on his lifelong study of personality, frequently concludes with Little huddled in a bathroom...
Employees Must Wash Hands
THEREWASATIME in my early thirties when I used a very old, expired grad student ID card to buy movie tickets at a discount. It was easy: I just peeled off the date sticker. I used it so often and so successfully that I rarely gave it a second thought....
Feedback
A Need for Understanding"A 'NORMAL' DAY" (October) hit close to home for me. I have a son who is on the autism spectrum and also has bipolar disorder, ADHD, and ODD. I can sympathize with everything from having a child who takes four different medications...
Go Your Own Way
RENEGADES TRANSFIX US-raising a hand in objection, standing tall amid the complacent crowd, coolly pronouncing, "I beg to differ.'' Challenging the majority takes guts. The desire to keep in others' good graces makes it tempting to keep quiet.If you...
He's Perfect, but I've Lost Sexual Interest
My boyfriend and I have been dating for a few years. We're perfect for each other in every way. But lately I've been feeling increasingly less sexual attraction to him because of his weight. He isn't anywhere close to being overweight- he eats healthy...
"I Can't Go on, I'll Go On"
IN ONE SENSE we're all stuck. There are inherent constraints on the human condition. We don't choose when and where we are born, or our parents, or the choices they make for us in our first decade of life. Then suddenly we are confronted with the freedom...
Leading Question
AS A CLASS of psychiatric medication, antidepressants! continue to reign supreme: One in 10 Americans took them last year, and among women in their 40s and 50s, the figure was one in four. Yet questions and doubts abound. Are antidepressants overprescribed?...
Let It Go!
Look closely. A long shadow may be clouding your future. It's the shadow cast by the pain in your past-the parent who wasn't there, the ex who betrayed, the boss who humiliated you.Or perhaps you're stuck in place by the unhappy residue of your own bad...
Peak Experience
FOR ALL THE toe-curling, heart-racing, oxytocin-pumping ecstasy that it delivers, the function of female orgasm remains a big question mark. Considered by some the greatest mystery in the evolution of human sexuality, scientists have spent decades trying...
Q & A With. Meghan Daum
IN HER NEW book, The Unspeakable, essayist Meghan Daum takes a clear-eyed look at the gulf between what we're supposed to feel and what we really do, beginning with her own life and her relationship with her mother.-Jennifer BleyerDo you think we prefer...
Searching for the Self, and Other Unicorns
ROAM THE AISLES of a bigchain bookstore and you'll see that the self-help section often looms fer and wide. Many popular books aim to help individuals get over a breakup, a bad relationship, or issues with parents. Books that help us overcome adversity...
Six Ways to Catch a Lie
LYING TAKES MORE cognitive effort than being honest because one has to work harder to remember fabricated details than to recall realones. Psychologist Jacqueline Evans of the University of Texas at Tyler and her colleagues took advantage of this fact...
Sneaking In
Navigating a major metropolis is challenging enough at ground level. What about its subterranean pathways, abandoned factories, and skyscraping apexes? Exploring such places calls for a higher order of curiosity and a willingness to cross lines.In cities...
Superstitious to the Bone
YOU DON'T HAVE to believe In voodoo or sorcery to indulge the urge to knock on wood. Whether we considerthem magical or not, simple physical movements may ha ve an innately reassuring effect.A paper in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General...
The Exchange Artist
TO HER MANY fans^Vmanda Palmer is a rock star, a poet, a houseguest, even a confidante. To her critics, she represents everything that's wrong with an oversharing, Kickstarter-abusing celebrity cultu re. Now, in The Art of Asking: How I Learned to Stop...
The Haul of the Wild
SAY THE PHRASE "weed and feed" and the average American might assume you're referring to a lawn fertilizer and herbicide mix or to the lawn care process itself: the pursuit of suburban perfection, the immaculate, weed-free lawn. But to someone in the...
The Myth of Cool
Coolness is mystifying. As a teenager, you labor to crack the code, attuning yourself to subtle changes in fashion, staying on top of musical trends, and using hip slang. Central to being considered cool, researchers find, is setting oneself apart from...
THE PAST IS WRITTEN ON YOUR FACE: But What Does It Say?
Wayne Winkler """" old and flippi/g through a local newspaper in Hancock County, Tennessee, the first time he learned of a group of people known as tne Melungeons. His parents had moved to Detroit from the South in the 1950s, But each summer when he...
The Truth about Bisexuality
BEING SEXUALLY attracted to both men and women may sound tike a superpower to some, doubling one's romantic options. Others dismiss it as a "phase" or a fantasy. Research confirms that bisexuality is very real, but tends to be misunderstood.-Samantha...
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