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Divorce Coaching

What is Collaborative Divorce? - A New and Better Way to Divorce
“Collaborative Divorce is a new way for you to resolve disputes respectfully -- without going to court -- while working with trained professionals who are important to all areas of your life.” International Academy of Collaborative Professionals

Dr. Thorpe’s Approach and Training:
Dr. Thorpe provides Divorce Coaching as a team member in the Collaborative Law process. She will work with either one or both members of the divorcing couple.

“As a therapist I view myself as helping therapy clients rekindle and optimize their primary relationship. I also provide divorce coaching services to those who have decided to move on and embrace the collaborative divorce process. I am pro marriage but not anti-divorce, especially when the couple works collaboratively.”

Dr Thorpe has attended Linda Piff’s, Esq. Basic Interdisciplinary Collaborative Practice Training. She has further related training in the areas of parenting, couple’s counseling, and parent coordination. She has a certificate in Mediation Training: Family Law Cases from the NJ Institute for Continuing Legal Education.

How Can I Find Local Information and Trained Professionals?

What is Divorce Coaching?

Divorce in general and The Divorce Coach
Divorce is typically an emotionally charged time for the partners involved and consequently any children. Emotions such as anger, fear, love, grief, guilt, blame and sadness can often form road blocks to progressing through the divorce process. Divorcing clients can be helped to keep emotions from making the process more lengthy and difficult and thus more costly through a consultative service called divorce coaching.

Divorce coaching aims to help clients construct a satisfactory settlement in an efficient manner with saving money and time being a primary goal. It promotes a context of respect and cooperation in an attempt to reduce harm during the process and ensure the well-being of the adults and children in their new post-divorce lives. Initially a divorce coach, along with the other team members, enlists the client into a collaborative problem solving mode. Your team may consist of collaborative attorneys, financial specialist, child specialist, divorce coach and potentially other professionals.

If children are a focus the clients are primed to think about co-parenting in a manner that is most beneficial for the well-being of their children. This is a stance that may be difficult for a client to take and maintain. Clients are further encouraged to be goal directed and focused, keeping emotional intensity down. Education about the psychological effects of divorce, on adults and children, and models of cooperative parenting are provided. Training in communication, conflict resolution and negotiation is also conducted.

Divorce Coaching is a Consultative Service Not Therapy

  • Some of the same interventions are used but the goals are different.
  • Divorce coaching has a focus on a client during the legal process of divorce.

A brief history of the marriage and its demise may be obtained but not other details of a client’s life. Therapy explores the past and present in great depth typically and seeks to treat symptoms, like anxiety or depression for example. In the collaborative model, a divorce coach may not act as a therapist nor can a therapist switch roles and change into a divorce coaching mode. When and if problems arise in the future for the divorced couple, typically surrounding child issues, the divorce coach can be utilized again in order to reduce disputes and potential legal problems.

Download Article: The Roles of the Mental Health Professional in the Collaborative Divorce Process

Divorce 101: Don't Litigate - Collaborate!
Authors: Jody D’Agostini, CFP, Craig Hyldahl, CFP, Amy Shimalla, Esq., and Amy Wechsler, Esq.
"Mental health professionals can assist in Collaborative Divorce, either as Divorce Coaches or Child Specialists. A Divorce Coach is a licensed mental health professional with specialized training in Collaborative Divorce and divorce coaching, who, with the other team members, guides parties into a collaborative problemsolving mode, and help them stay goal-directed."

Download Article (PDF):

Fee Schedule:
Fees for Divorce Coaching are $250 per hour on a prorated basis. Please see Divorce Coaching Agreement for more details. In divorce coaching, no formal diagnosis is made, which is necessary for insurance reimbursement. Medical insurance reimburses for therapy, while, divorce coaching is an out of pocket expense. Saving money is often on the minds of those divorcing and use of a divorce coach is a potential way to divorce more efficiently; quickly and economically.

Download Divorce Coaching Services Agreement (single coach model) (PDF) Updated 02/2012

Download Therapeutic Mediation Agreement (PDF) - Updated 8-30-18