Co-Parenting/Divorce

“You don’t really understand human nature unless you know why a child on a merry-go-round will wave at his parents every time around- and why his parents will always wave back.”

— William D. Tammeuson

How well do you and your former spouse or partner share children?

Your child is one of the best things that resulted from your union! It is essential to their well-being that although you are no longer romantically connected, you must come together around their best interests.

Co-parenting therapy and education are necessary when parents do not live together but share the responsibility of raising a child or children together. Your child needs both of you and has the right to maintain an equal relationship with each of their parents. Both of you must come together to ensure the child feels loved by both of you, has a consistent and stable routine and environment, and a good education, without feeling torn between you.

Your child deserves to know they are a priority in both of your lives. They need to be secure in the understanding that you love them more than you dislike or even hate each other, and that you are willing to do whatever it takes to let them know they are safe and will be cared for by both of you.

Successful co-parenting is not an easy task, especially if you are new to the idea, and certainly takes some work and effort. Stress during and after a breakup often runs high, which can lead to high-conflict situations. Having the appropriate skills and a sustainable co-parenting plan in place is the most important part.

Research shows that children with parents who co-parent well following a separation grow up just as well or even better than children with parents who had successful marriages. With your support, they will learn from you how to solve problems, manage adversity, and adapt to change. – Dr. Joan Kelly

How can Dr. Heller be helpful?
As an expert in co-parenting, whether working in the role of a Collaborative Facilitator or Child Specialist, Parenting Coordinator, or Reunification Specialist, Dr Heller will guide you toward the development of a sustainable parenting plan, time-share arrangement, and skill development, in an environment where you will learn to:

  • Share your children and put them first
  • Effectively communicate
  • Solve problems and make decisions in your child(ren)’s best interest
  • Develop consistent routines across households
  • Allow them to love and have access to both of you

Parenting Plans

The State of Florida requires by statute that divorcing parents must develop a plan for sharing time and co-parenting their children. Given her extensive education, background, experience, and training in child development, education, special needs, and family therapy, Dr. Heller will assist you as parents to design a plan that will be sustainable over time and in the best interests of your children.

A parenting plan approved by the court must, at a minimum, describe in adequate detail how the parents will share and be responsible for the daily tasks associated with the upbringing of the child; the time-sharing schedule arrangements that specify the time that the minor child will spend with each parent; a designation of who will be responsible for any and all forms of health care, school-related matters including the address to be used for school-boundary determination and registration, and other activities, as well as developing; the methods and technologies that the parents will use to communicate with the child.

In this process, Dr. Heller will work with you and as needed your team of professionals to:

  • Guide parents to develop an understanding of the impact of their decisions on the children
  • Identify differences in parenting styles and manage the resulting tension and disparity
  • Encourage the participants to remain focused on the needs of the children
  • Identify the changing developmental and emotional needs of the children
  • Develop communication, problem-solving and co-parenting skills
  • Identify the children’s specific risks and concerns
  • Identify common parenting goals