Divorce Counseling

Losing oneself in depression, and therefore experiencing all its unfortunate repercussions, is oftentimes a misunderstood journey. It’s nearly impossible to explain, even for the individual experiencing it. Below is some helpful information to guide you through your first steps away from depression.

  • Shanti: inner peace

  • Bhāvanā: mental insight

  • Karuṇā: guided healing

What is Divorce Counseling?

A divorce is never something anyone intends on having to experience, which merely amplifies the feelings that follow such an event. Divorce is one of life’s most complicated transitionary periods, oftentimes unwanted by one of the individuals involved. Even if the divorce isn’t conflict-based and remains amicable, several aspects of life change, requiring a readjustment of what both daily life and emotional well-being mean. The multifaceted nature of removing oneself, or being removed from, such an intertwined connection with another being is oftentimes likened to grieving over a loved one that has passed. There are stages to this loss, including but not limited to sadness, denial, depression, anger, guilt, bargaining, and finally, acceptance.

Our divorce counselors act as your guide on this complicated journey, whether that involves discernment, pre-divorce, post-divorce, individual, or couples counseling. No one route towards healing during and after a divorce is the right road to take, and we keep this adaptable perspective throughout all aspects of our therapy. We encourage a safe environment to discuss the divorce process, emotional involvement, coping, and finding a mutually beneficial road towards cooperative decision making.

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“Suffering is not holding you, you are holding suffering” (Buddha)

What Does Divorce Counseling Address?

Divorce counseling can address whatever aspects of your life have been affected, growing with you through the complex changes that arise. We delve into the emotional aspects of divorce, but also assist you in coping with the more logistical parts of this process as well. We discuss the following.

  • Legal options
  • Financial advice
  • Custody
  • Marital property
  • Possible future complications
  • Parenting styles (moving from conflict-based to cooperative)
    strategies for talking about your divorce in your social circles, specifically with children if they are involved

Remember, these are mere possibilities and divorce is multifaceted.

  • Infidelity
  • Communication discrepancies
  • Physical and/or emotional abuse
  • Life changes
  • Finances

This list is not the end all be all and the symptoms of divorce can take many forms.

Cognitive symptoms: stages of grief, anger, sadness, depression, anxiety
Physical symptoms: sleep disturbances, weight fluctuations
Behavioral symptoms: social isolation, reliance on social support as a replacement for the partner, identity crisis

Discernment couples counseling: This type of couples counseling is meant to assist you in making the right decision for your relationship. Although it is not directly linked to divorce counseling, it can lead down this path as we help you determine whether maintaining your relationship is the right choice for you both.

Pre-divorce counseling: Here we delve into communication issues, the well-being of your children, if appropriate, emotions arising as you begin the divorce process, and what methods will help you cope with these stressful, next steps.

Post-divorce counseling: This is where the rebuilding of oneself takes priority, as self-esteem tends to be drastically reduced in one or both individuals. The reality of raising children separately, having to build a new life, and dealing with finances are all massive hurdles we help you overcome and heal from.

The current quarantine context, and increased levels of stress on all fronts, has created a contentious environment for couples who may have already been struggling. There are far fewer outlets and distractions from the problems within your marriage that oftentimes allowed for issues to go unaddressed for extended periods (i.e. work, social engagements, freedom of movement). The additional life stressors of possible unemployment/reduced hours, finances, children being at home, and so much more, can exemplify and highlight already deeply rooted issues, resulting in a high-conflict home environment. We understand the complicated nature of being in lockdown with your partner if you’re in the divorce process and we’re here to provide simple, everyday strategies to get you through this unprecedented time.
Healing is a complicated journey, not an impossible one. Opening your heart and mind to your own well-being will enlighten your path and reveal your destination.
Our clinic approaches divorce counseling, whatever stage you both are in, as simultaneously formed by both your relationship and your individual needs. Although divorce is technically the end of a relationship, it is also the beginning of both a new relationship between you and your ex-partner and a rediscovery of yourself. Finding your own identity is just as important as finding a healthy path for you both, especially if there are children involved.

Due to the complex nature of divorce, involving finances, emotions, and interconnected social relationships, we take a small steps approach to delving into all aspects of this transition and any past relationship conflicts that could potentially transfer over into your individual lives.

Our Therapeutic Approaches

Holistic & Transpersonal

To delve into your divorce journey effectively, a holistic and Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) is helpful. EFT looks at the whole person and their attachment styles in relationships. This transpersonal information is used to address the unhealthy patterns of behavior, defense, and bonding that led to the divorce, and may transfer over into your new lives and family unit.

The term holistic also applies to you as part of a unit, a family system, and as possible co-parents. By recognizing you and your partner’s established roles in this integrative behavioral therapy, it becomes easier to determine what may cause future coping difficulties and individual hurdles.

‘You’-centric & Relational

Our insight-oriented approach allows your own interactions with the divorce process to guide your treatment path. Your therapist will use the information they’re given from your communicative style, past issues, and current raising of issues, to determine the most productive course of action.

Every approach is different, but sometimes a more structured and tangible therapy is beneficial. Utilizing the Gottman Method, in which the core aspects of mutual respect are promoted, helps guide you and your ex-partner through manageable steps and goals, whether that’s the logistics of divorce or the emotional aspects of moving on.

Mindfulness

By remaining in the present moment and acknowledging the current conflict at hand as a source of the relationship termination, but not as who you both are, coping becomes easier. By separating the actual issues, this narrative allows you to recognize each other’s perspectives that were previously drowned during the relationship’s deterioration.

We empathize with you and your partner’s past problematic sources as well and provide you with tools to understand each other more effectively. This makes your healing journey easier, especially when new conflict arises that you both may need to deal with, either as parents or as individuals.

Your Counseling Experience

Each therapeutic experience is different, and each session can unlock helpful and new paths to explore during the healing process. The below are just to give you a general idea, hopefully instilling a bit of confidence and ease any worry associated with seeking therapy.

  • 60-minute sessions generally, once a week
  • Short-term work can last between 3-6 months or whenever you feel you’ve reached the versions of yourselves you were seeking
  • Long-term work also lasts as long as you both need

How We Choose Your Therapist

  • What you both need to reach mental well-being
  • Your personalities and energies
  • Your communication styles
  • Our therapist’s specialties, training, interests, and own lived experiences
  • Our therapist’s approach and communication style

In the Meantime

Extensive research has found that these simplistic and mindful lifestyle changes have a drastic effect on daily life. Give them a shot if you need some immediate peace.

  • Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Reiki
  • Experiencing nature
  • Conscious, deep breathing
  • Maintain an active lifestyle
  • Healthy diet

FAQs About Divorce Counseling

Divorce counseling is more than just its name. We seek to find the most beneficial versions of you both as you form a new relationship and find your identities outside of your past. It’s easy to become wrapped up in a partner and lose yourself, and one of our main therapeutic goals is to assist you in building a well-rounded and healthy life during this new stage.
This is important to think about during our counseling sessions and we do investigate possible past conflicts that lead to the divorce and how they could resurface in this transitionary period. We aim to find the root of your issues as a couple and ensure they don’t hinder you from finding a healthy journey out of your relationship.
Part of our divorce counseling is assisting in creating healthy, cohesive parenting styles that benefit everyone in your family unit. We aim to move away from conflict-based approaches and promote a co-operative style from which your children feel a connection to both parents, even when they are not there.
Yes, this is a common emotional response to divorce. Your life has been intertwined with your partner for an extended period of time and not having them there can feel like an actual loss of life. Our therapy assists you in traveling through these stages of grief and coping with them holistically and appropriately for your life.
Family counseling provides you with tools and strategies for addressing current and future issues. It’s always a good idea to use some forethought, as you have, and prepare for a stressful life change before it happens. We can help you do this and allow this transition to be a smoother, healthier one for all of you.
We can absolutely provide individual guidance, as well as coupled divorce counseling. A major part of healing during this transition is individualized. Oftentimes people need to find who they are again and rebuild a sense of identity outside of the past relationship. Our therapy places this notion at the forefront of our counseling, addressing both intertwined and completely individual complications.