This Webinar with Dr. Lisa Firestone will help individuals and therapists make sense of the serious psychological consequences of emotional hunger and will clarify the confusion between what might look like love from real, nurturing love. This distinction helps a person to understand and make sense of the impact of having an emotionally hungry parent on their psychological development and on their relationships, especially with partners and children.

The Webinar will draw on Dr. Robert Firestone’s theoretical understanding of emotional hunger as well as attachment theory to explore the causes and consequences of emotional hunger. It will illuminate how a person can feel for their experience, overcome the impact of emotional hunger, and learn to love themselves.


$15.00Add to cart



The Webinar will explain:

  • How to distinguish between emotional hunger and love, including examples of both
  • The serious psychological impact of emotional hunger
  • How to identify whether a person is experiencing emotional hunger or love
  • The underlying causes of emotional hunger
  • How to develop a more compassionate attitude toward yourself if you have been impacted by emotional hunger
  • Methods for breaking maladaptive patterns that result from having an emotionally hungry parent
  • Ways to develop more inner security
  • How to shift to being more loving, and less emotionally hungry

Emotional hunger can look like love and is often mistaken for love, but it has the opposite effect on the person it is directed toward. Love nurtures, while emotional hunger drains the person and leaves them empty. Understanding the difference between emotional hunger versus love can help explain why some people don’t feel nurtured or secure in parent-child or adult romantic relationships.

Many children grow up in an environment in which they are focused on by a parent, and there are no boundaries. They feel confused, because their parent appears to be “there for them,” but the parent’s focus and intrusion left them insecure and untrusting.  Many adults experience romantic relationships in which they feel nothing they do is enough, and that they continually fail to satisfy the needs of their partner. Many people have a parent or partner who they’d describe as overbearing, intrusive, smothering, overprotective, or possessive. Often, these behaviors are the result of the person expressing or experiencing emotional hunger as opposed to real love.

People often mistake emotional hunger for love, because it involves longing and intensity, and in certain ways, can look the same. A person may seem highly attentive or affectionate to their partner or child, which seems positive. However, emotional hunger differs from love in that the child or other person in the relationship does not feel nurtured as they would by love, but instead, feels drained of vital energy. A child may cling to the parent, because they’re not experiencing a real sense of security or connection. The partner may feel a constant pressure to make their significant other feel good or whole.

When a person feels emotional hunger, they often experience it as a need they’re trying to fill using another person. Their attention or affection doesn’t come as an act of nurturance but instead is an act of taking, a feeling of need.

Love is like food that nourishes and develops a child’s emerging psyche. Emotional hunger, on the contrary, depletes the child and can make it more difficult for a child to differentiate or individuate. A child who has experienced emotional hunger often feels self-focused, self-protective, and withholding from others. This Webinar will shed light on the impact of emotional hunger and methods for breaking maladaptive patterns related to emotional hunger.

Learning Objectives:
1. Recognize the difference between emotional hunger versus love
2. Explain how emotional hunger can contribute to an ambivalent attachment pattern in children or preoccupied attachment pattern in adults
​​​​​​​3. Describe strategies for parents and couples to develop more inner security and come to express  more attuned nurturing emotional responses



Presenter: Lisa Firestone, Ph.D.

Price: $15 (CE’s not included)

90 Minutes


$15.00Add to cart



Optional 1.5 CE Credits sold separately More Info Here




Ordering Information:

Once payment is received, you will be e-mailed a full video recording of this Webinar along with all presentation materials.

Optional CEs (1.5) may be purchased through R. Cassidy Seminars for $10. A link to purchase CE credits will be included in the email containing all your Webinar resources. More Info Here


About Lisa Firestone

Dr. Lisa Firestone Phd, Lisa Firestone, Psychalive, The Glendon AssociationDr. Firestone is the Director of Research and Education at The Glendon Association and a Senior Editor at PsychAlive. An accomplished and much requested lecturer, Dr. Firestone speaks at national and international conferences in the areas of couple relations, parenting, and suicide and violence prevention. Dr. Firestone has published numerous professional articles, and most recently was the co-author of The Self Under Siege: A Therapeutic Model for Differentiation (Routledge, 2013), Sex and Love in Intimate Relationships (APA Books, 2006), Conquer Your Critical Inner Voice (New Harbinger, 2002), and Creating a Life of Meaning and Compassion: The Wisdom of Psychotherapy (APA Books, 2003).


Continuing Education Information:

This event is co-sponsored by R. Cassidy Seminars.  A link to purchase CE credits will be provided to all Webinar registrants.

Satisfactory Completion

Participants must have paid tuition fee, signed in, attended the entire seminar, completed any accompanying reading assignment, completed an evaluation, and signed out in order to receive a certificate. Failure to sign in or out will result in forfeiture of credit for the entire course. No exceptions will be made. Partial credit is not available.


Cassidy Seminars is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to offer continuing education for psychologists. R. Cassidy Seminars maintains responsibility for this program.

Social Workers

Cassidy Seminars, ACE provider #1082 is approved as a provider for social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB), through the Approved Continuing Education (ACE) Program. Approval Period: April 15, 2012-April 15, 2015. R. Cassidy Seminars maintains responsibility for the program. Social workers should contact their regulatory board to determine course approval. Social workers will receive 1.5 live or homestudy continuing education (clinical, social work ethics) clock hours in participating in this course.

Please Note: Licensing Boards change regulations often and while we attempt to stay abreast of their most recent changes, if you have questions or concerns about this course meeting your specific board’s approval, we recommend you contact your board directly to obtain a ruling.

Note: Many state boards accept offerings accredited by national or other state organizations. If your state is not listed, please check with your professional licensing board to determine whether the accreditations listed are accepted.