Articles

I’ve authored a number of articles that deal with family matters and divorce. You can read the full text of each one at goodtherapy.org.

May 6, 2013
Forgiveness and Divorce: 14 Considerations
This is a big topic. It may be at the core of why many divorces do not proceed well. The ability to forgive can be quite complex, depending on the events and issues under consideration.

December 5th, 2012
Things Children Want You to Know About Divorce
Children often feel or actually are voiceless when their parents divorce. It is a highly emotional time for parents, and kids sometimes become part of the fabric of the conflict as each parent decides what he or she thinks is in the best interests of the children.

October 10th, 2012
With Divorce, the Only Certainty is Uncertainty
Change is difficult for most people. It is difficult whether we are the ones making the change or if the change is occurring because of someone else’s decision. This is most often true in the case of divorce.

August 27, 2012
Divorce and Social Networking Sites
Welcome to the 21st century, where Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and a host of other social networking sites have made it possible for you to be in touch with your old high school or college friends, long lost relatives, people you worked with 15 years ago, and that best friend you had at summer camp when you were 14.

June 21, 2012
You Can Wait Too Long to Address the Problems in Your Marriage
We often find ourselves in marriages or long-term relationships that become difficult. Part of the reason this could happen may have to do with feeling hurt by the other person, and then feelings of anger soon follow.

April 17, 2012
Children and Divorce
In my work with couples who are learning how to parent their children together after ending their marriage/relationship, we spend a good deal of time talking about how the ending of their relationship affects their children, what the internal experience of a child could be, and how they manage their parents’ conflict.

March 5th, 2012
11 Reasons to Choose a Collaborative Divorce
One of the most difficult times in our lives is when we choose or are faced with changing some of the most basic aspects of how we live.

January 26, 2012
Creating Divorce Rituals With Your Children
The decision has been made. You and your spouse are divorcing. There are a multitude of decisions to be made, and it is often difficult to know where to begin.

divorceDecember 9, 2011
Who Gets Which Friends?
You’re getting a divorce. In addition to the friends you brought into the relationship, you and your ex have made many friends together through your children’s activities, your jobs and the places you have volunteered.

children of divorceNovember 1, 2011
How Parents Make it Difficult for Children to Love Their Other Parent
There are many ways in which one parent can influence how their children perceive their other parent. Often this is a positive experience for the children as they learn to appreciate both of their parents for what they each provide individually as a parent.

September 23rd, 2011
Five Rights Your Children Should Have in Your Divorce
We know that when a marriage ends it is the parents who are divorcing. But do we think about the fact that our children aren’t getting a divorce, they are getting two households in which to continue living with their family. Their parents relationship is changing to something different than they have yet experienced. What do you need to think about so that your children are taken care of as well as possible?

blended familiesAugust 15th, 2011
Dating After Divorce and Blending Families
You’ve been divorced for three years and have been working at moving on in your life, establishing new relationships and feeling so much better about yourself than you have in a very long time. You are grateful for your friends and family and the support they have given you.

July 8th, 2011
The Greek Chorus and Your Divorce
Many of you may remember the role of the Greek Chorus in literature classes from high school or college. They appeared in the works of Sophocles, Aeschylus, Euripidies and Aristophanes, to name just a few. Their role was to explain what they thought was going on and would intentionally or unintentionally “stir the pot”. In modern times, it is often our friends and families who comprise our own personal Greek Choruses as they work so lovingly to protect us from what we have not yet experienced and to help us along in life.

June 3rd, 2011
Can My Child Choose Which Parent to Live With?
On a fairly regular basis I am asked by a parent how old their child must be before they can choose which parent they want to live with. Many parents tell me their child will be 12 years old, 13 years old, 14 years old soon and will be able to make their own decisions. They appear to be uniformly surprised to learn that a minor child does not have the legal right to decide which parent to live with.

May 4th, 2011
To Divorce or Not to Divorce, That is the Question
You’ve been together now for about 14 years. For the past 4-5 years, you’ve wondered if you can stay together any longer. You’re interests have changed, you don’t enjoy doing things together as much. You find you are impatient and want to have the closeness, with someone, you used to have with each other.

April 7th, 2011
Conflict, Co-Parenting, and Communication
You thought that getting divorced was going to make parenting easier. You thought your communications were going to improve because you weren’t living together anymore. You had high hopes that things would settle down and all the hurt, disappointments and anger would melt into the background. If you could just make decisions on your own without having to argue about everything you think is right and your ex thinks is wrong, you could have a much happier life.

communicating divorceMarch 3rd, 2011
Five Considerations When Telling Your Children You Are Getting Divorced
It is difficult enough that you are experiencing a major upheaval in your life. In addition to the feelings you may have of fear, anxiety, anger, or frustration, you also have children. Their lives are changing as well. You hope they haven’t been affected too much by the tension between you and your soon-to-be ex, but you don’t know for sure. What is the best way to tell them?

children of divorceFebruary 2nd, 2011
Children and the Details of Your Divorce
Most divorcing parents believe their children are being protected from the details of their divorce. They make sure they speak quietly into the phone when discussing them with family and friends. They don’t leave court papers or their financial documents around. They only work on them when the children are with the other parent.

January 7th, 2011
Rights of First Refusal
As parents move into co-parenting after divorce, one of the many questions that arise is who will care for the children when the parent with whom they are scheduled to be cared for has to be somewhere else (a business trip, a doctor’s appointment, etc.) The right of first refusal means that the other parent will be the first person on the list to contact to see if they are available to watch the children. The intention is to maximize the time the children have with their parents rather than other caretakers. This can be whether it is on short notice or with advance planning.

December 3rd, 2010
Ten Ingredients to Have in a Parenting Plan
When parents divorce, a series of events unfold that require thoughtful and considered decisions about the future of their children. It soon becomes starkly evident how many decisions are made on a daily basis as a parent. Most people don’t realize how many decisions they make from one minute to the next. Nor do they often realize how much coordination it takes to make the family engine run smoothly.

November 3rd, 2010
Curious about Curiosity?
People who have been in long marriages or relationships get to know each other rather well. They can often anticipate what the other person might say or do or think or want……you get the picture. In loving relationships, partners might sometimes have a reliance on each other to know what each other wants without having to tell or explain….and sometimes they can and do just that. It might help them to feel loved, recognized and appreciated. The “knowing” of the other person is experienced through a positive filter.

September 3rd, 2010
Bird Nesting Custody Option: Advantages and Disadvantages
Parents are often asking me to describe the various options they have for their post-divorce living arrangements. In addition to the many possible choices available to consider for how children go back and forth between two residences, there is also the possibility of having children stay in the home they are currently living in while the parents move in and out. This is sometimes described as “the children get the house” or “bird nesting” or just “nesting”.

August 4th, 2010
Child Custody Mediation with a Mental Health Professional (MHP)
When divorcing, you have a number of options to choose from: You may decide to work with individual attorneys, choose the Collaborative Divorce model, or meet with a mediator. You may also choose to meet with a mediator or an attorney/MHP mediation team.

July 1st, 2010
Separated Parents: Six Ways to Manage Holiday Scheduling
Parent #1: It’s already December. We need to decide about Christmas and you had Johnny last year. Why do you think you should have him again this year?
Parent #2: You know how important Christmas is to me. I’ll take him to my parents and he’ll have all his cousins around. Why should he miss out on the big Christmas celebration my parents always have.

June 4th, 2010
Co-Parenting Scheduling and Organizing Websites
When is Johnny’s baseball game? I need to know the schedule. Does it conflict with some of the other activities he is telling me he wants to sign up for? Susie is consistently late for her piano lesson because we don’t know when Bobby’s soccer game is over. These are common complaints parents have when they are co-parenting and trying to manage the busy schedules of their children.

May 6th, 2010
Divorce is a Family Problem
“And what’s romance? Usually, a nice little tale where you are everything as you like it, where rain never wets your jacket and gnats never bite your nose and it’s always daisy-time.” —D. H. Lawrence
D. H. Lawrence reminds us that “romance” isn’t what we live with day to day. Marriages often end because fantasies do not become realities and attempts to maintain the marriage and challenge the fantasies are not successful.

April 1st, 2010
Parallel Parenting
When two people divorce or end a relationship and they have children, they are faced with the need to continue a relationship that has not worked. For some, this is not a difficult transition. They set up their separate households, work out a parenting plan, communicate efficiently about the needs of the children and move on to whatever comes next in their lives, while co-parenting.

January 25th, 2010
Moving on – Dating – New Partners – What About My Children?
Your relationship with your children’s other parent has ended. It has taken some amount of soul searching after being told that your relationship is over. It may not have been an easy transition. Perhaps you have felt some combination of hurt, anger, depression, relief, guilt, uncertainty or hopefulness.

December 22, 2009
I’m Getting a Divorce… Now What Do I Do? The First Steps
Many of you have been in the position of either deciding to divorce or having been asked for a divorce. Either way, you will be making very important emotional, legal and financial decisions with a person with whom you are most likely in some kind of conflict.

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