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Why a Divorce Coach?

by Denise Hames and Peter Everts

In what ways can a coach assist us?

  • Provide emotional support—divorce is painful and difficult
  • Help divorcing spouses express and prioritize concerns and needs
  • Teach stress reduction strategies
  • Help parents emotionally support their children through the divorce process
  • Strengthen co-parenting relationship and help develop a parenting plan
  • Teach problem-solving strategies
  • Improve communication patterns

In addition to the two attorneys, the child specialist and the financial specialist, divorce coaches are an important part of your collaborative divorce team. The role of a divorce coach is to assist each person in the divorcing couple to navigate the emotional aspects of their divorce.

Divorce is a frequently painful, confusing, and emotionally challenging time for everyone in the family. We have found it very beneficial to enlist the services of a divorce coach to support a separating couple as they make decisions that will impact the rest of their lives.

How is the divorce coach’s role different from that of a therapist?

While many therapeutic skills will be used by the divorce coach, divorce coaching is time-limited and focused on the separation and divorce process. The primary goal is to assist couples through a facilitated communication process to solve their own problems and craft a vision of their co-parenting relationship and post-divorce family in which all parties will be able to live and thrive.

Do we meet with the coach separately, with our attorneys, or all together?

The answer is yes—all of these scenarios are certainly possibilities with the divorce coach. Some couples find it useful to have the coach present at meetings when both spouses are meeting with both attorneys. Sometimes it is helpful to have a meeting with the divorce coaches and the two spouses in order to assist in negotiating and formulating agreements such as the parenting plan or other aspects of the collaborative divorce. Other situations may call for one spouse to meet with the divorce coach alone for assistance in a particularly emotional aspect of the divorce.

 
By Denise Hames and Peter Everts