Marriage & Co-Parenting Tips
MARRIAGE & DIVORCE
Most people enter the marriage relationship with the hope of building a lasting union built on love and respect. But marriages end and only one spouse’s decision is needed for the dissolution. Whatever their reasons for seeking dissolution, the spouse requesting a divorce usually comes to the decision after great difficulty trying to make the marriage work. Feelings such as guilt, hurt, anger, or loss commonly take place within both spouses involved in a divorce. For married couples with children, there is frequently more of a desire to maintain the unifying bonds of matrimony for the sake of the children. At the dissolution of marriage, the welfare and stability of children become paramount. We at Pierre-Louis & Associates, PLLC understand the divorce process is often very difficult for our clients and their children. We provide somes tools here individuals need to go though the difficulty and to help raise healthy kids.
Marriage counselors help couples overcome the stressors in marriage. Most counselors meet in person, and some meet online. Many counseling programs are “pre-marriage” to help couples avoid potential difficulties common in many marriages. In Texas, participation in a premarital program associated with Twogether in Texas will give potential spouses a waiver of the state marriage license fee. Some counseling programs are short-term retreats. Couples retreats exist to help rekindle the spark of romance. Every relationship needs it. However, some retreat programs are more serious and intended for marriages in crisis. These intensive types of retreats have cropped up around the country. Some local to Texans include Marriage Boot Camp, Life Marriage Retreats, The Clearing, and The Hideaway Experience. Some marriages in crisis may need deeper sorts of intervention. Abuse, abandonment, or adultery are traditional deal-breakers in a marriage union. Some marriages containing these things have been salvaged though through life-change, forgiveness, and counseling. Programs exist specifically to help couples recover from the devastation of adultery, usually the top marriage killer. Visit our links page for many different marriage and premarital counseling programs.
Many self-help resources exist to help couples. Many books written by experienced counselors can lead couples to relationship success much the same way traditional counselors can. Some highly recommended marriage books deal with what we like to call “our wiring” -advice that focuses on why men/males are different from women/females in relationships. Such books help each side of a relationship see problems from the perspective or point of view of the other party. Guys and girls are different and consequently may approach a host of subjects differently, such as attention, communication, sex, child-rearing, and money. Some examples of “wiring” books include the marriage mentoring series Love and Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs. Another is Dr. John Gray’s classic Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus. Still yet is Allan and Barbara Pease’s insightful bestseller Why Men Don’t Listen and Women Can’t Read Maps.
Non-married or common-law “spouses” going through a breakup often struggle with the same feelings faced by divorcing spouses. While a legal division of their property might be absent from their split, non-married parents deal with the same emotional custody and support issues faced by divorcing spouses with kids.
CO-PARENTING AFTER SEPARATION
Separated parents, married or not, owe it to their children to help raise them well.. A team of prepared nurturing parents can provide the greatest chance of instilling healthy behaviors and habits in a child to help propel that child into adolescence. When parents are separated, balanced co-parenting will provide their children with the best chance for success in life. Separated parents sometimes need unique strategies to help them co-parent. What follows are some resources to help separated parents co-parent their children well. Family Services of Greater Houston provides parental-skills training for all parents. They note parents will learn 1) Effective ways to discipline; 2) What it takes to build healthy self-esteem in your child; 3) How to talk to your child; 4) The important stages of child development; and 5) How to manage your anger. They also provide classes specifically for divorcing couples. The DePelchin Children’s Center, a children’s services organization with campuses throughout Texas helps kids in many ways, including counseling, adoption, and foster care. They focus on kids’ mental health by offering counseling services for children. But they also provide parenting classes for parents. See additional parenting and counseling websites on our links page.