A separation is a big life change. As we know, with all big life changes, comes an adjustment period. In these circumstances, every member of the family is affected. Whether it be the mother, father or child, every person must become adjusted to the ‘new norm’. What this looks like will differ for every person and no two separations are the same. So, it comes as no surprise that no two people will deal with these changes the same way.
Thus, parenting after separation courses are created. There are various public and private programs that are designed to assist you, your ex, and your children after a breakup. Whether you are looking to improve communication with your ex and develop new co-parenting strategies, want to understand your child’s developmental needs or are seeking personal growth after a difficult transition, there are many reasons these courses are helpful.
People assume that attending these courses is an acknowledgement of their inability to accommodate their child’s needs or co-parent effectively. This is an incorrect preconception, and we recommend all clients with children attend following separation.
These courses may also be Court Ordered to assist parents in their transition from a unit to an effective co-parenting team.
Lots of clients ask ‘Will this impact my Family Law matter?’. Yes it will, but positively!
Parents seeking personal development and improvement are looked on very positively by the Court. These courses are seen as empowering, effective tools.
If you are not in Court, you can also be proactive. As they say, you are never too old to learn something new.
Want to learn more? We will now outline the most commonly Court Ordered and personally utilized after-separation courses in Western Australia.
Parenting After Separation – Putting Children First
Are you in the first stages of your separation or struggling to come to terms with what might be ahead for you and your child? This is a course that aims to support parents as they mull through any ‘teething-problems’ that may arise in a co-parenting relationship after separation.
Some common questions that parents ask themselves at the beginning are;
‘How am I supposed to communicate with my ex?’
‘Is my break-up going to affect my child?’
‘How do I make sure that I am not exposing my child to any conflict between myself and my ex?’
This course is designed to answer all these questions and teach parents how to be child focused, to help them best adjust to their new norms.
This is recommended by us to all clients in any situation involving children. Sessions occur for 5 sessions over 5 weeks, typically run in the evening to best avoid interrupting the busy schedule of a working parent.
If you have any further questions in relation to this course, or are looking to book, please see Relationships WA – Parenting After Separation
Mums and Dad’s Forever Program
Is your co-parenting relationship not working out as you planned? Maybe they aren’t dropping the children off when they said they would, which leads to a heated discussion. You are not alone. Many separations can be highly volatile and result in a high level of conflict.
Not dissimilar to the previous, the Mum’s and Dad’s program is run through Anglicare and is arguably the most common Court Ordered parenting course. It is focused on teaching parents how to avoid leaving their children feeling ‘caught-in-the-middle’ after separation.
Over a period of 8 weeks in two hour sessions, the program covers;
- The separation process;
- Managing your emotions;
- Conflict management and effective tools of communication;
- How your separation and associated conflict might impact your children;
- How you can set boundaries;
- Learning to understand yourself and your own needs.
You are not required to attend with your former partner. If you are required by the Court to attend we encourage you not to feel offended but to see it as an opportunity to hear from a professional about how best you can approach these situations. Sessions are run in East Perth, Gosnells, Joondalup and Mandurah.
For further information, please see Anglicare – Mums and Dads Forever
Family Violence and Men’s Behavioural Change Programs
The prevalence of Family Violence is increasing in Family Law matters. This may not be a bad thing, as it could evidence an increasing willingness for victims to come forward and speak about their suffering.
Whether you or your partner are a victim or perpetrator of family violence, there is a myriad of courses available to assist in your recovery and journey to stability. These courses are designed to help women, men, young people and children.
Relationship’s Australia offers the following courses, all staffed by experienced counsellors with qualifications in psychology, counselling and social work;
- 10-week program for women who have experienced domestic violence;
- 6-week program for children and young people who have seen or experienced abuse in the home;
- 24-week program for men’s behavioural change;
- The Djinda Service to support indigenous women and children that have experienced family violence.
For any further information on Family Violence courses please see Relationships WA – FAIR Workshops
How can we help
We can assist you in finding relevant services to help near you and steer you in the right direction to best suit your matter. If you have any questions about a course you are interested in, Court Ordered to complete or about your Family Law matter in general, we are here to assist.
Author: Kym Barrett-Lennard