Couples considering divorce can benefit from counseling in multiple ways. First and foremost, divorce counseling can assist you in determining whether or not your current relationship can be saved. By taking time to examine the underlying patterns of conflict that led you to this place, alternative options and resources may be identified and utilized to rebuild an emotional connection for you and your spouse.
Maybe you can't decide if you want to end the relationship or remain and commit to making it better. In Discernment Counseling, you don’t have to be sure you want to remain married. You don’t have to be convinced that you want a divorce. There is no pressure to commit to any given path. Many people need the time, space, and an objective, supportive therapist to provide a place to thoughtfully consider all of their options.
Should you decide to proceed with divorce, divorce counseling can help you through the emotionally trying process of separation which includes emotional, financial and legal ramifications. A divorce counselor can support and encourage your personal growth and self-understanding throughout this transition. She can also help you as a couple to move the process forward with more clarity, hope, and resolution.
Is divorce the right decison?
Getting divorced is a deeply personal decision, and shouldn't be made in haste. If you are contemplating ending your marriage, you may be struggling to understand the potential consequences of your actions. You may be wondering if it would be easier to stay married than to deal with the emotional turmoil and financial pressures of divorce. If you have children, you may wonder if staying together for their sake is the better decision. Every situation is different, and ultimately, you and your spouse are the only ones who can decide whether divorce is the right choice for your family.
Discernment Counseling is a short-term process for couples where one or both partners are considering a separation or divorce, or are ambivalent about the future of their relationship. Lasting only up to 5 sessions, this counseling option will assist couples to decide whether or not it will be possible to stay together and live well.
What do I do now?
When the divorce decision is made people can feel afraid, and that life is out of control. You may be feeling overwhelmed by the decisions that need to be made and even unsure of where to begin.
Divorce takes time and an emotional toll on the participants. There are legal and financial decisions to be made during a time of extreme stress. Divorce counseling can help you prepare for what's ahead. The choices you and your spouse make today can help you begin to heal and rebuild the life you want for tomorrow. A divorce counselor can educate you individually and as a couple about the choices that you need to make as you move forward.
How will I get through this?
Divorce is an emotional process as well as a legal one. Divorce counseling can be a valuable way to help you cope with the stresses of divorce. It also gives you a safe place to vent your frustrations, anger, fears and sadness as you try to manage a wide variety of emotions that arise during the process. The goal is to help you manage your emotions so that you can make informed decisions about your life and those of your children.
Divorce counseling can normalize the strain of divorce, helping you better understand the process and providing useful feedback during this difficult time. By getting help to navigate the emotional hurdles encountered, you are better able to move through the process and focus on a tangible action plan.
What about the children?
The most significant factor for the children's emotional health is the way their parents approach their separation and divorce. The way you and your spouse handle conflict directly impacts your children. Well-meaning parents, stressed by the relationship breakdown, all too often put their own feelings of frustration and anger before considering those of their children.
Divorce counseling can help you learn to co-parent in the best interests of your children and to meet their needs as you struggle to separate your adult lives. You can learn what your children need at their particular ages and what they will need from you as they grow.
A divorce counselor can also help spouses with a parenting plan--those logistical decisions that need to be made for your custody agreement. Working with an objective third party who can navigate through the decisions can allow both of you to reach an agreement based on the needs of your family. This can reduce tension and conflict as you prepare for the more formal legal process.
The more you and your spouse can work together in the best interests of your children, the healthier all family members will emerge from this transition to your new, re-formed family.
Rona has worked with individuals, couples and families around the issue of divorce for over 20 years; helping support people through the decision-making process, through the emotional turmoil of the divorce journey and through post-divorce adjustment. She has always been aware of the impact this family change has on all members of the family.