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How to know if you should seek therapy before filing for divorce

This is one of those situations where each person in the couple may have a different idea about what is supposed to happen.

If one spouse doesn’t want the divorce, the reason for going to therapy may be to get the other spouse to reconsider. For the spouse who wants the divorce, going to therapy may be a way to help articulate the finality of his or her decision.

The decision to seek therapy before divorce is an important one. And, the type of therapist you choose is essential to whatever outcome is being desired.

It is important for each person to articulate what he or she wants in the therapy session, and it is the responsibility of the therapist to provide clarity to each party

in the potential litigation. Working through some of these things in advance may help avoid protracted divorces costing thousands of dollars and may help the divorcing parents be better able to support the needs of their children through the process. Children often hold out hope that parents will stay together, and a therapist can help the family go through the grief of losing the intact family they
have known by helping parents communicate only the essential aspects of what is happening so that children can continue on with their lives.

It is a good idea to talk with your attorney about possible resources for counseling as you consider this process. A mediated divorce is one option and collaborative family law is another option. A mediated divorce involves both parents meeting to make decisions about the various aspects of the divorce.

Collaborative family law engages counselors to assist parents through the process so that many of the issues brought before attorneys can be settled in advance. Attorneys serve the legal matters of the divorce. Counselors are for familial, psychological, and emotional needs including navigating the transitions. Sometimes, psychiatrists may be involved as an adjunct to therapy.

Ultimately, if you think you may want couples therapy, then you should ask yourself if you really want a divorce at this time.