Maintaining Healthy Military and Veteran Relationships

Elizabeth Polinsky Maintaining Healthy Military and Veteran Relationships
Drive On Podcast
Maintaining Healthy Military and Veteran Relationships

Elizabeth Polinsky is a marriage counselor for military and veteran families, and the host of The Communicate & Connect Podcast for Military Relationships. In this episode, we talk about maintaining healthy military families.

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Scott DeLuzio   00:00:00    Thanks for tuning into the Drive On Podcast, where we’re focused on giving hope and strength to the entire military community. Whether you’re a veteran, active duty, guard, reserve, or family member, this podcast will share inspirational stories and resources that are useful to you. I’m your host, Scott DeLuzio, and now let’s get on with the show. Hey, everybody, welcome back to the Drive On Podcast. Today, my guest is Elizabeth Polinsky. Elizabeth is a marriage counselor in the Norfolk Virginia area, and she’s also the host of the communicate and connect podcast for military relationships. In this episode, we’re going to talk about military families and relationships,  and how they are affected by military service and after the military service and once when we become veterans. Welcome to the show, Elizabeth.  

Elizabeth Polinsky   00:00:55    Thank you. I’m excited to be here.  

Scott DeLuzio     00:00:57    Thanks. Why don’t you give us a little bit about yourself, your background, and a little bit about what you do?  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:01:05     Gosh, where to start. I guess I get lots of questions about things like what led me to start focusing really on couples counseling with military couples. And that is pretty much what I do.  I guess that’s the real short of it is that I’m a marriage counselor and I work mostly with military and veteran couples, but both my parents were a dual military couple and they ended up getting divorced and that was part of,  just like the challenges that they faced with military life. My mom got out of the military and then my dad stayed in and he actually retired from the Navy and he struggled a lot in relationships.  That was something that was always on my mind.  Then I started working for the department of veterans affairs.  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:02:03    I used to do a lot of individual and group counseling for the VA. I was one of the only providers who did a type of therapy called cognitive processing therapy for PTSD. also did a lot of work around sexual trauma. One of the things that stood out to me when I was working at the VA was that even though I had a lot of I was working with veterans around mental health. There was depression, anxiety, traumatic events type stuff going on. But a lot of them would tell me stories about things that had happened in their romantic relationships.  They would tell me that was the most painful part of their experience, or that was one of the hardest, that’s not quite how you say that.  Most hard is not the right phrasing, but one of the hardest parts about their experiences with them, with all of their military experiences, was the pain that had happened in their romantic relationships.  

Elizabeth Polinsky   00:03:09     When I moved to Norfolk, my husband is Navy. I’m a military spouse. When we got stationed here, I decided I wanted to switch to doing couples counseling, focusing specifically on military couples, to see if I can hopefully prevent some of that stuff from happening. That is a little bit about me. Like I said, do counseling and then I do have my podcast. I also found after starting to do a lot of counseling with military couples that it’s very hard to do,  scheduling is very hard for military couples, just with the chaotic schedules. then a lot of people were not comfortable with going to counseling.  I made it as a resource just so that people could still learn about how to improve their marriages specifically in regards to military life. Whether even if they didn’t have time or their schedules didn’t allow for it or their partner just wasn’t willing. That is the story.  

Scott DeLuzio   00:04:26    Yeah. that makes a lot of sense too because I could imagine that there in the military, there’s a lot of people who move from time to time and they may even, even if they are comfortable with going and seeing you for a period of time, they may only have a limited amount of time that they’re able to go and see you. Then, eventually, they pack up and move and they may not have somebody that they know or trust in the area that they moved to.  so if they can continue listening to you on your podcast on their own time. That may be a helpful addition as well. I definitely think that the podcast angle makes sense. We’ll talk a little bit more about that in a little bit.  But in your experience, as you’ve worked with various military couples and veteran couples, what are some of the challenges, the unique challenges that they face,  as opposed to just say your typical civilian couple that maybe never served in the military?  

Elizabeth Polinsky  00:05:35     A few different things come to my mind and I’m having thoughts about things that are specific to your active duty military couples, as well as some things that impact veterans. I might talk a little bit about both, but, let’s start with just the active-duty ones. The kind of obvious first ones are deployment and long-distance and the frequent moves and the social isolation, being away from friends and family, the challenges of reintegrating like, if somebody goes on deployment, the kind of rules and the routines of the family shift, and then whenever they come back from deployment the rules and the routines shift again.  I guess we could just say it’s sort of a lack of stability. The constant shifting and changing puts a lot of strain on relationships.  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:06:38    Part of what helps relationships function is actually being in a routine as much as possible. I would kind of lump those all together under the active-duty military couple. But then with my veteran couples, his would go for both active duty and military couples, but when I work with them in couples counseling, I find that I actually have to help, undo some of the training from military life. Service members tend to be very skilled at compartmentalizing, being very logical and most of their spouses want to know where their emotions are. A lot of what we’re doing in couples counseling is helping service members and veterans regain access to their emotions in order to form a deeper emotional connection with their spouses, which then leads to just improved communication, decreased fighting, things like that. 

Scott DeLuzio    00:07:56    Having your emotions in a box in the closet is not the right thing in that case right here.  

Scott DeLuzio     00:08:05   I definitely know what you’re talking about in terms of the different dynamics in the family when someone goes away on deployment. Things change, and then when they come back, things change again.  When I was deployed to Afghanistan, my oldest son, he was born about a month and a half before I was deployed. Before that I wasn’t a dad, I didn’t know anything about being a dad.  Like any first-time parent, there’s no handbook that comes along with the kid, but that tells you what you’re supposed to do and how life is supposed to be different or whatever. And then, throwing a deployment on top of that.  Then when I came back home, he was already obviously a little bit older and my wife had gotten into a routine where she was taking care of the baby on her own and she just kind of had it.  

Scott DeLuzio   00:09:02    I came in sort of feeling like an outsider almost in my own house, not in a bad way. My wife didn’t do anything wrong. It was just like, it seemed like she just had it.  I nailed it down. She just had everything. I was like, okay, well, this is cool. Where do I step in? What do I have? I, I should do something. But I didn’t quite know what. And there was a little bit of that dynamic going on as well. You’re talking about communication. In talking about your emotions and your feelings, what are some of the traps that people fall into? I know compartmentalization of your emotions is probably one big thing. Are there any other traps like that these couples might get into and how do we get out of these traps and how do we not compartmentalize that we are able to open up to our spouse?  

Elizabeth Polinsky   00:10:08     I think the first thing that comes to my mind when you ask that is, some research that’s done at the Gottman Institute, by John and Julie Gottman.  I think they’re psychologists.  But for sure, they are doctors of some kind, and they put couples in a lab and they kind of watch couples live together for a few days and then see how they interact. But anyway, some of their research talks about something called the four horsemen of the apocalypse, which are communication patterns that, if they continue kind of unchecked, tend to lead towards divorce. and the four are criticism, defensiveness, contempt, and stonewalling. Let me just think for a second, how I want to explain this. I’m either not in touch with my emotions, or I am not in a place where it’s comfortable to share my emotions in a relationship, then I tend to be left with those four options for communicating.  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:11:31    If I’m not aware of my emotions, I might get critical or defensive, or if in our relationship, it’s not a safe place for me to share my emotions. I might get critical and defensive because those are my protective ways of trying to communicate my emotions and, and get my needs met.  The problem with that is that if I am critical, then my partner usually responds defensively. And then when my partner spawns a defensive response defensively, I get defensive. And then when I get defensive, they get critical. Then they get kind of critical and I get defensive and it keeps going back and forth until eventually we have contempt and stonewalling.  And that is, I think about the challenges around communication that couples face.   

Scott DeLuzio     00:12:31    What is the best way to break out of a bad cycle? If we’re in that bad criticism and defense back and forth cycle,  and it seems like it’s just going to continue fueling itself without some sort of outside action just stopping it in its tracks and getting it to move away from that. What do we do to solve that problem?  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:13:01    Yes, yes. Well, couples counseling obviously helps, but I think the first step is recognizing that this is the loop. It’s kind of the vicious cycle that you’re stuck in. But even that will go a long way if we because often couples feel kind of like against each other. If they can recognize that they’re both trapped in this communication cycle, then they can usually team up against it. Once they can recognize it and start teaming up against it, then they can work on creating an atmosphere where they can share their emotions. One thing that they can do is turn a blame into a claim. Instead of getting critical or blaming my partner, I can claim what I need. And I can say, this is what I’m feeling, I’m feeling lonely, or I’m feeling frustrated, that you didn’t include me. and talking about what it is that I’m wanting or needing, instead of talking about what my partner isn’t doing or what I don’t like that they’re doing.  

Scott DeLuzio    00:14:31    But I mean that makes a lot of sense. And even thinking about some of just yourself, your own thoughts and stuff, how your thoughts influence your behaviors and your emotions and everything that that could be a vicious cycle to where if you have negative thoughts. That’s going to create negative behaviors and negative emotions and all that sort of stuff as well. Really, it’s just a matter of breaking that cycle and, and cutting it off so that you can continue moving forward in the direction that you want to go. And I think the more complicated thing is in a relationship when there’s two people, because if it’s just something that’s happening in my own head, I can tell myself, okay, well, I need to break the cycle and I need to do this, but if now I’m getting these outside influences where there’s the other person in the relationship and they’re fueling this cycle then it’s something that you have to work on together, I suppose.

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:15:37     Yes and no. Ideally, yes, you want to be able to work on it together, but if, for some reason you’re just in a very stubborn marriage, you’re really the only one working on it by yourself. That’s typically not the case, but if it were, just you working on changing how you communicate will likely have an impact on your partner, there is sort of a reciprocal nature. If it’s a vicious loop. Let’s say my partner is critical or defensive, even if I can change what I’m doing, I can stop the loop. At least maybe not permanently, but maybe it doesn’t change. My partner is going to have criticism or defensiveness, but it can change the escalation of it into a larger situation. 

Scott DeLuzio     00:16:35    Okay. That does make sense because it does take two people in that cycle. And, if one of them can break that cycle, then it could help it. Like you said, it may not, immediately,  can’t cancel it out but it may help get you to that point. That does make sense. 

Elizabeth Polinsky   00:16:56     Can I add, can I go fast? Especially if I can get to the part where I’m sharing my more vulnerable feelings. You had said or had sorta talked about the mental spiral or the cycle that’s happening internally. A lot of times in a couple of relationships, maybe something makes me feel like my partner doesn’t care about me or that they think negatively of me,  whatever I’m doing is not good enough, or that they don’t accept something along these lines. The natural response is to then kind of get angry, but the underlying feelings are usually feelings of some sort of projection or insecurity type thing. If I can get to the point where I can recognize those emotions and then talk about those emotions with my partner, let’s say my partner gets critical.  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:18:04    If I change things, if I don’t get defensive back, that’s a really great step. If I can do that, that’s pretty successful. But then if I can go even further and say, okay, that’s to me that sounded critical. And that bothered me. I didn’t like it. That made me feel like you don’t care about my opinion or something like that that has even more power to change that cycle.  because then my partner hears about their impact on me, and most partners really do care. Then that tends to influence them.  

Scott DeLuzio     00:18:50     That makes sense too. I’m glad you added that in,  I guess maybe before a relationship gets to that point where they’re in that cycle, it’d be great if they all just started off on the right foot and never had gotten to that point and to begin with. But, what are some ways that couples can start their marriage off on the right foot, to get into the right cycle, as opposed to that wrong cycle that leads them down that vicious cycle that you were talking about before?  

Elizabeth Polinsky   00:19:32    I wish I could tell you it’s preventable pretty much. Every couple has a cycle. It’s just how extreme are we talking? But there are things that can help improve the relationship. Keep it kind of strong, to begin with, that can help prevent it from being intense and, I guess I’m thinking where to start. I actually just had a wedding photographer ask me to create this whole checklist of things for getting ready for marriage. What do you do to get started off? I think I came up with 12 things. I don’t know if I can remember them all off the top of my head, but one of the ones that I tell couples if I only had one tip to ever give a couple, it would be to have monthly marriage meetings where we put it on the calendar for doing it.  

Elizabeth Polinsky   00:20:38    And we’re going to talk about everything that is maybe hard to talk about. We’re going to talk about how our quality time is. We both feel we have enough quality time and how’s the quality of quality time. We’ll talk about our finances, and kind of get on the same page with money. We could talk about parenting in that category. My husband and I have done these for years now, pretty much since we started dating. And there are just lots of topics you can cover in them. We’ll cover our health, we’ll cover family updates. Things about couples, sex lives. Those are really important conversations to have because many couples don’t even talk about it. Everything that can get covered in a monthly marriage meeting. And then it’s also a really great way to be on the same page together in general, but also to address any big life changes. If somebody was about to deploy or was about to move with a PCS, then we can be on the same page with our planning for it, and check in with each other about those things during that time. Other things would be, if you’re not married yet, maybe planning the wedding would be something that could get talked about or planning the honeymoon, those types of things could get talked about during a marriage meeting as well.  

Scott DeLuzio     00:22:16    Those Are definitely big topics. You want to make sure you’re both on the same page with all of that stuff because that time can be pretty stressful. You don’t want to miss out on and assume what the other person’s thinking and, and turn out you’re wrong or whatever.  I think a good piece of advice to give to someone is communication. Having that meeting with your spouse and communicating those hard to talk about topics, and knowing that you’re in a safe place to have those conversations. Obviously, if you’ve gotten married, you care enough about each other, that you want good things for each other. Ideally anyways, I can’t say that for necessarily every relationship that’s out there, but hopefully, that’s the case. But when you have these conversations, it’s with the goal in mind of improving and bettering the relationship. If you just keep things boxed away, whether it’s emotional or other problems that might be going on, it’s not gonna help anything. Talking about it and having those open conversations, I think it makes a lot of sense. And if it requires putting it on the calendar to do that, on a regular basis and then, that makes sense too, right?  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:23:50    Can I add something real fast? It does quite a few things. Especially with the hard topics, couples tend to want to avoid the hard ones because they’re hard. It sets aside time to make sure we are talking about the hard ones. It keeps couples on the same page, and it actually helps them enjoy their time together more because they don’t have to have those conversations outside of the marriage meeting. I mean, they could if they need to, but knowing that there’s a dedicated time to have a discussion around a topic like this helps couples just enjoy their date night instead of using date night to catch up about the kids and to catch up about, oh, my mom or your mom is sick. 

Scott DeLuzio    00:24:50. Because that’s the last thing you want to do when you’re sitting there at a nice dinner or something like that is to be bogged down with those hard topics that you maybe don’t really want to discuss. And then you’re thinking when’s the check coming? Let’s wrap this thing up. That’s not exactly the place you want to be in, I wanna switch gears a little bit and talk about some of the challenges that you talked about specific to the military couples. The people who are dealing with deployments or different things. What are some of the things that you can do to stay connected during a deployment, and, and deal with the emotions of some of those harder times, outside of maybe those monthly meetings?  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:25:49    Hmm. I mean, it’s pretty hard to have a monthly meeting while you’re deployed. I suppose there is something that I got from, I used to do these workshops when I worked at the VA called the pairs curriculum but they were called Warrior To Soulmate workshops. And every, every VA has them and they’re usually free for veterans to attempt. And they’re typically on the weekend, two days covering different sorts of communication skills and relationship skills. They’re usually provided by the chaplain service. Wherever the nearest VA hospital is. One of the things that they would teach is something called a daily temperature reading. That’s just what they called it, but basically, it’s a daily check-in, that’s really tiny. Let me see if I can remember it here.  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:27:05    I think it was appreciating new information, puzzles, concerns with recommendations and wishes, hopes, and dreams. That’s sort of the order you go in. And that is something that I would probably recommend, deployed couples for one, one partner is deployed. If you don’t have a lot of time to talk, that is a great strategy for how to have a conversation, or if you’re going to have email chains back and forth, that’s a way to stay up-to-date with the things that are important. The first part is just, what do you appreciate about your day, or about your week we’re about what’s going on in your life? It could be related to the relationship in the family life, or it could just be oh, it snowed, it snowed here over the weekend. And it doesn’t typically snow in Norfolk, but, I did appreciate looking in my backyard and just having like the white snow and my dog running around, that’s fun.  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:28:13    That’s something that I could do if my partner was deployed, I could write about under the appreciation section then there’s new information. Just update information. Our kids got an A in art class, something like that.  Puzzles are things that you’re thinking about,  that you’re just sharing. You’re not sure what you’re going to do. Maybe I’m puzzled about if I’m going to go to my parents or your parents for Thanksgiving since you’re gone. I don’t know what I’m going to do yet. That might be something that I write under puzzles concerning recommendations. If it were me, I’d be like, I’m concerned about your safety. I recommend that you stay alive. That’s probably what I would write if it were me and my husband, but any sort of concerns, I’m concerned about the house/ This thing is going on. What do you think?  Could be in that section and then ending with wishes, hopes, and dreams, which is just how they would phrase. Seeing something positive that I’m hoping for, I’m looking forward to when you get back or I hope you are having a good day, or I hope you enjoy visiting whatever city you’re in.  

Scott DeLuzio     00:29:57    And that framework, especially, like you said, on a deployment, when someone is pressed for time, they may not have a lot of time. If they’re able to make a phone call at all, they may not have more than five or 10 minutes that they can make that call, and if you stick within that framework, you’re not just talking about things that are surface level. If the weather is something that you’re appreciative of like you were with the snow, that’s a different story, but, but you’re not just saying, oh, well it’s sunny, it’s not raining. It’s all that kind of stuff. Let’s get something a little bit more in-depth here. And talk about the things that, that matter,  in that conversation, because you don’t want to get to the end of that 10 minutes then all you really found out was that it was sunny and or that it snowed or whatever you want.  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:30:58    You want to get into a little bit more than just that. Having a framework in mind is a good idea. I think that that does make some sense to, to put that together and, and kind of know that beforehand, before you are deployed and then two or three months into it, all you’ve been doing is talking about the weather and things like that. You want to have something,  upfront, so what to expect when you’re making that phone call or writing that email when you’re communicating back home.  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:31:35   I think because I hear a lot about how we don’t talk and then I finally get to get to talk to them and we get in a fight or it’s just like this venting thing, that happens or worse where you just don’t even know what to talk about because so much has happened. Where do you even start? That gives people a way to start in a way to keep it meaningful and generally pleasant as well.  

Scott DeLuzio     00:32:09    And what about the times when someone does have something that they need to vent about? You may have that limited time frame to talk about things and that does fall out, maybe outside of the framework that you just kind of laid out there but every once in a while someone, someone just needs to vent and they need to get something off their chest. Maybe it’s just something that’s happening at home. It has nothing to do with the relationship, they just need someone to talk to. And here’s an ear and I need to talk. I’m going to just dump all this stuff out on you, but is that the right time and place to do it, when we’re considering deployments when someone’s away or, or is that something that maybe you find another friend closer to home that you can talk to, over coffee or something like that?  

Elizabeth Polinsky  00:33:08    Is it okay to do while your partner is deployed? That’s dependent on, based on your partner’s deployment experience? I think so. I think the best route would be to just ask your partner like I have something I want to vent about is, is that okay if I vent to you right now about what’s going on and let them tell you if they’re in a mental space to be able to handle the venting or even, especially if you only have 10 minutes, do they have something that they want to talk to you about? That’s maybe something you guys could negotiate together and maybe, maybe can I vent for two minutes? Then you use the rest of the time for other topics, but it is helpful to have somebody else to vent to you like a friend.  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:34:07     Another thing that you can do is, and this may sound funny, but you can have kind of an imaginary conversation with your spouse. This is actually a really great coping skill.  It sounds kind of funny. I think sometimes when I mention it to people, I can sort of ask myself, what would my partner tell me if they were here and I could vent to them about this? How, what would they do? How would they be supportive of me? Would they have advice or recommendations? And that, sort of imagining how it would be if they were here with me, is a great way to, to sort of in a way, get support from your partner, even though they’re not there at that moment.  

Scott DeLuzio    00:34:58    That’s true. I hadn’t actually considered something where you just think about what, okay, what would my spouse do, or what would they say whatever the situation is. When I was deployed, my wife actually had a Teddy bear, and it had on the chest of the Teddy bear. There’s this little plastic window just big enough for a picture to go in. And she put a picture of me in the Teddy bear and she just had it sitting on the bed next to her.  Just as a little reminder that I wasn’t there, but, I was still there for her., I can just imagine, and I don’t know if this is true or not, but I could just imagine my wife sitting there and talking to the bear as if that was me and having that kind of conversation. Where it’s okay, well, what would Scott do?  

Scott DeLuzio   00:35:59    What would, what would he say in this situation? There’s a lot of truth in that. 

Elizabeth Polinsky, I think that that could definitely be a useful tactic. 

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:36:11    Yeah, my partner even when it’s rough, just the nature of marriage is that my partner is my biggest support system, even in the hard times, even when the marriage is kind of on the rocks, my partner is still my partner and they’re my support system. And if I can kind of imagine how they would support me through what I’m going through bad is a really wonderful coping skill. That’s still, it is about the relationship.  

Scott DeLuzio     00:36:43    Yeah, exactly. In the beginning of this conversation, you had mentioned the kind of compartmentalization of emotions and how in the military, we get really good at that. And we kind of have to unlearn that over time. What are some ways that you’ve worked with people to unlearn those types of things and bring out those emotions? Is it something that is easy to be unlearned, or is it that’s something that takes a lot of effort?  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:37:25    I suppose everyone is different, on how easy or difficult it is. probably how long they have been doing it. Some families, even when you’re a kid, when you’re growing up, some families, never talk about emotions and, emotions, aren’t something to have or talk about and you just kinda move on if you come from that environment and then you join the military and then you retire from the military and then you do some sort of military contracting something or other. And now we’re talking about maybe 60 years of no emotions it’s going to take a while. but if I had a family where we talked a lot about emotions and them, I did four years in the military and ended something else, it’s probably going to be a lot shorter.  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:38:25   But the thing about how military members and veterans tend to cope with emotions is that they have an emotion and then they move on really quickly, but it’s not that they don’t have emotions. It’s biologically hardwired in the human body to have emotions. You can’t not have them. It’s really just about recognizing them and giving back in touch with the emotions, and that can, that can be done in a variety of ways. I think you could go to therapy, different types of therapies, help in different ways with something like that. But if I was just trying to think of something kind of quick and easy to start working on that it would be, especially, for people who like to compartmentalize, I might want to identify my thoughts first. Every time I have an emotion, I have three parts to my emotion.  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:39:40    I have a physiological response in my body, such as my heart rate, going up, my breathing, changing muscle tension, things like this, the physiological response, I have thoughts about what’s happening and then I have a behavior urge and sometimes it’s more easy to recognize the thought or the behavior urge because those are somehow more acceptable parts of the emotion, 4 million for military guys. I would just start thinking about what I tend to do and what thoughts I have, and that will help you figure out your emotions. If I feel angry, I might want to yell and scream or punch a wall if I’m really angry and I might have thoughts, this person is such a jerk or something more intense than that.  If I feel anxious, I might notice that I’m kind of thinking about how things could go wrong.  

Elizabeth Polinsky   00:41:00     Sort of planning for all the different contingencies that is a sign of anxiety. and someone might notice that first, they might notice that they are planning and thinking through all the possible ways something could go and noticing a thought I need to prepare for the worst. They might be able to get in tune with that part of their emotion before they’re able to label it and recognize it as anxiety. To answer your question in a more direct way, I’m starting to track out what are my physiological sensations, what are my thoughts, and what are my behaviors that all go together with the situation, and that will help somebody start identifying and getting in tune with their emotions.  

Scott DeLuzio     00:41:58    And that helps bring those out of the box that they have them stored away in and shoved under the table or under the bed or wherever they have them stored. Start to pull those things out. When you start to recognize them and, and everything that, that helps to get those out there. Then you can have more open and honest communication with your spouse. I want to give you a chance to talk a little bit about your podcast and where people can go to find out more about your counseling if they’re there in your area and your podcasts so they can follow along and get some help from you, whether they’re close to you or not.  

Elizabeth Polinsky   00:42:50    I’ll start with the podcast. My podcast is called the communicate and connect podcast for military relationships that is very specific to military relationships. It does cover lots of helpful tips and things for a couple of relationships generally, but the focus really is on military relationships and how to strengthen military marriages. and that is of course on any podcast platform that someone wants to listen to it on. And the website for that is I am also a marriage counselor. That is my full-time job. I am currently located in Norfolk, Virginia, but of course, we’ll probably move with the military. At some point, I do online counseling in multiple states. I can provide counseling in South Carolina, Arkansas, Virginia, and Nevada soon. I’ll be able to do that in Nevada. At the moment, my office for in-person therapy is the relationship center in East Beach, Norfolk, Virginia. That’s where I can be found, information about that is at  

Scott DeLuzio    00:44:13    And I will have links to both the podcast and your counseling services in the show notes so that people can, find out more about that if they’re there in your local area, or even in any of those other areas that you mentioned so that they can utilize those services, if, if that makes sense for them.  I do like the remote aspect of it,  for, for some people, because some people just aren’t comfortable going and walking into a place like that and, and having those conversations in person, and if they can do it on the other side of a screen that might take away a little bit of that, anxiety about going into, the office like that. That’s definitely a great service and it’s probably something that, COVID has, has brought up and made, made it a little bit easier, to normalize that type of thing. That’s a great service as well. Thank you again for coming on the show in joining me and, telling us a little bit about, what you do and, and how, military and veteran couples can,, get on the right path if they’re not already and, and stay on that path, to help improve their relationships and, and have a good, good relationship going, going throughout their, their entire marriage. Thank you again, for joining me.  

Elizabeth Polinsky    00:45:43    Thanks for having me.  

Scott DeLuzio    00:45:46    Thanks for listening to the Drive On Podcast. If you want to check out more episodes or learn more about the show, you can visit our website We’re also on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube Drive On Podcast. 

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