For more than eighteen years, we, who work with the Collaborative Divorce team model, have often encountered couples who say, “If we understood then what we understand now, we wouldn’t be getting this divorce”. Occasionally these divorcing couples actually do change their minds and utilize the knowledge they gain from this unique model of communication skills and relationship coaching to re-commit to their marriages.
We have come to realize that this is a unique process that can help couples avoid the devastating emotional and financial costs of a divorce—something like a divorce intervention process.
In the collaborative model, each partner has a Personal Coach—a licensed mental health professional who is experienced in working with couples and families, trained in mediation and communication skills. On occasion, as the need arises another member of the team may be the Child Specialist—another licensed mental health professional with a specialty in children’s issues. This professional serves as a voice for the children; a crucial element when parents are too overwhelmed or too hurt and angry with each other to appreciate what their child may be experiencing.
You, the couple, may wish to consult with a neutral Financial Specialist, usually a Certified Financial Planner, and / or Collaborative Lawyers who represent each client, performing much like legal coaches. If a decision is reached to divorce, all the team members work together to support and help the couple avoid a painful and destructive adversarial court process.
Imagine that instead of using this powerful team to guide a couple through a dissolution process, the same team could be used to help couples avoid divorce. For some couples, just working with their personal relationship coach to help them resolve differences and develop a deeper understanding of each other would be enough. Others would benefit by understanding the effect of divorce on their children though feedback from the Child Specialist. A few might need some honest feedback and reality testing on the effects of divorce from a Collaboratively trained Attorney or help in resolving financial differences from a Collaborative Financial Specialist.
Research indicates that many, if not most couples, encounter difficult times in their marriage. If they can weather these times and make the necessary changes to stay together, they often report being very satisfied with their marriages.
Our experience indicates that intensive, short-term coaching, with team involvement when necessary, gives couples a chance to avoid divorce and strengthen their marriage. We’ve enclosed our brochure which explains the model, and we encourage you to call our office for any information about the Collaborative Relationship Process.
If you would like to download our Crisis Intervention brochure, please click here: