Rana Glick, MA, LMFT
Marriage Therapist, Divorce Coach, & Family Mediator
Divorce Process Facilitation and Design – Collaborative and Litigious Divorce
Separation and divorce are emotionally demanding situations requiring the patience of even the healthiest among us. Life altering decisions are made under the trying of circumstances. For this reason, it makes absolute sense and adds considerable value to the expense of divorce, to have a competent, experienced and specifically trained mental health professional at your side from the very beginning of this process. It is fool hardy to think you can save money by not having a divorce coach in from the beginning of your divorce proceedings. Although each of you may arrive at the process with good intentions to settle amicably, finding yourself in the quagmire of legal details sets off a tsunami of unexpected emotional triggers. Trust and confidence in the other person may come into considerable doubt in the middle of this process. For this reason, bringing in a divorce coach to ‘save the day’ is the worse use of your time and money. As an example of a poor investment, you never buy into the stock market when prices are high rather, you’d be wisely advised to consider averaging your monthly contributions.
Whether I am your first contact as you consider divorce options, a referral from an attorney working with your case, or part of an interdisciplinary team of collaborative practitioners, my training and expertise can help to ensure the best possible outcome for you and your family.
As a Collaborative Professional Neutral Divorce Coach or Child Specialist, I work side by side with collaboratively trained family law attorneys. I understand the legal aspects of divorce and the emotional roller coaster of uncoupling. The unique role of the specialist is different from that of therapist. As a divorce coach, I hold steady your feelings, without delving into their root causes, keeping the well-being of the entire family as the primary goal with a neutral stance. Coaches will teach, exhort, direct and model in a way more actively engaged than would a therapist. Although as a coach I will help you to identify and articulate your feelings, they will be connected to current triggers requiring self-control and the ability to think more rationally and less emotionally under trying circumstances.
As a coach and seasoned therapist with mediation skills, it is not uncommon for you to continue your individual work with your therapist as I work with you as your divorce coach or, your children’s specialist. I cannot provide both services to you simultaneously as they are distinct from one another. As a neutral facilitator working with you as a divorce coach or child specialist, my ethical standards and licensing specifics protect you as a consumer, no matter how fond you may be toward me or the work we did together in the past. I will, however, work with you through the divorce process and after with issues related to your divorce transitions. In such cases of ethical conflict, I will be happy to offer you a referral.
Additionally, insurance coverage only applies when a medical diagnosis is assigned. Should we be working together in therapy, insurance coverage may apply. It is your responsibility to confirm your insurance coverage and deal with all insurance matters during and after our work together. Divorce coaching and Child Specialist roles, in the context of divorce, are skills separate from divorce therapy and are not a covered expense.
Although you may choose the litigious divorce, for solid reasons and concerns, my services as a coach would serve you equally as well. Keep in mind that litigious divorce, coupled with parenting issues, have damaging effects for generations to come. Children of divorce as adult survivors of divorce, face their own issues as they transverse relationship waters.
At your convenience visit www.collaborativepractice.com and review Standards for Collaborative Practitioners.
Helping couples through divorce as a Neutral Mental Health Practitioner
Many people who are divorcing choose the collaborative process. For more information on this process, visit the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals website.
The collaborative process assembles a team of professionals to work with the clients. In addition to the lawyer each client retains, the collaborative process uses a financial professional and mental health professional, who participate in the process as neutrals and help the couple craft a divorce decree.
The role of the neutral mental health professional has existed for many years. This role involves attending all the team meetings as a facilitator. I work with parents, if children are involved, to develop an effective parenting plan and a positive co-parenting relationship. My focus is to keep the well-being of the entire family as the primary goal during and even after the divorce.
Serving in a Parenting Facilitator role
Pennsylvania courts often advise separated and divorced parents to seek the assistance and support of a licensed mental health professional to work as a parenting facilitator. The parenting facilitator works with parents who want and need some support to develop a strong parenting relationship that will survive the divorce for the sake of the children. I often continue to work with couples, post-divorce, to strengthen their parenting relationship and improve their communications.
Helping parents develop Parenting Plans
Some couples choose litigation for their divorce process. I am often asked to work with those couples, by their lawyers or therapists, to develop a solid parenting plan. In addition, many parents need some suggestions on how, when and where to tell their children about the divorce. I have found that couples who spend the time developing a plan for these discussions have a stronger chance to develop a positive relationship post-divorce. Experiencing your children thrive and create relationships based on what they’ve learned from the significant role models in their lives, is the best investment you can make. Knowing that you’ve worked hard to create a foundation for their lives, in spite of needing to leave your marriage, is not a small sense of accomplishment.