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About Dawn Lipthrott, LCSW

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good marriage and relationships

Dawn J. Lipthrott, LCSW
Relationship Learning Ctr.
1177 Louisiana Ave. Ste. 109
Winter Park, FL 32789

(part of Orlando area)

Tel & Fax: 407-740-7763




By Dawn J. Lipthrott, LCSW


1. Every morning make a conscious commitment to eliminate blame, criticism, and invalidation from your side of the relationship. If it leaks out, acknowledge it, and apologize to your partner.

2. Pay attention to and express appreciation for positive things your partner says or does--no matter how small!

3. Ask your partner to write down what makes him/her feel loved and special. Do the same for yourself. Exchange lists. Then, every day, no matter how you feel about him or her, do one loving/caring behavior for your partner!

4. Honestly look at the things YOU do that you know are not helpful to the relationship. If you want something different, you need to do something different!

5. Develop compassion for your partner and for yourself. Reactive, defensive thoughts, words and behavior are ways we protect ourselves from "danger". Watch yourself reacting and ask yourself, "What does this remind me of from my own past?" and, " What can I do differently at this point to become safer for my partner?"

6. Ask very specifically for what you need and say 'why' it is important to you. Your partner cannot read your mind and actually experiences life differently than you do!

7. Learn new skills that make communication safe and effective for both of you.

8. Know that both romantic love and the power struggle are not the destination, but are stages on the road to 'real love'. Frustration and conflict are keys for healing and growth for both of you!

9. Read Getting the Love You Want, by Harville Hendrix, Ph.D., for new understanding of underlying issues that fuel frustration in your relationship and of ways to co-create a better relationship.

10. Most relationships can be 'saved' and transformed, and getting rid of the partner does not get rid of the 'problem'! If you think you need help, call for an appointment or come to one of our workshops or classes. You can create the relationship you want.

Visit Our Relationship Success Bookstore for more practical ideas and tips.

Further help in Intentional Dialogue:

Read the article on Intentional Dialogue on this website.

Read Getting the Love You Want : A Guide for Couples by Harville Hendrix, Ph.D. Through our partnership with, you can order this and his other books that help in understanding yourself and others.

If you are married or in a committed relationship, attend a
Getting the Love You Want Workshop.

Find a Certified Imago Relationship Therapist in your area. Imago Relationships International.

DISCLAIMER  Disclaimer: Information, observations, and opinions are offered for general reference only and should not be misconstrued as counseling advice, diagnosis or psychotherapy. Base your treatment or decisions solely upon the recommendations of your your own psychotherapist, counselor or physician or your own choices. By using this site, you signify full acceptance of our Terms of Use.   


I welcome your constructive comments and suggestions about the material on this website and how we can all be most effective in co-creating the kind of relationships and world that is honoring and respectful for all people.
©Copyright of the Dialogue Process as used in Imago Relationship Therapy belongs to Harville Hendrix, PhD
© Dawn Lipthrott, The Relationship Learning Center, 1995 Renewed 2008

(May be copied and distributed as long as this identifying information is retained on copies. Reproduction for financial gain is prohibited.)