What is divorce counseling and how is it different from “closure” counseling?
Closure counseling is fairly uncommon when it involves two people but technically it would be a couple terminating a relationship coming in to gain closure over the end of that relationship together. Sometimes individuals will call the grief work after a relationship ends “closure counseling” when they are coming in alone as well.
Divorce counseling is generally a way of helping a couple with children move toward a peaceful end to their relationship in the best way possible for their children. Often there are factors to consider such as how, and when, to tell the children the marriage/relationship is ending. Different aged children have different needs and concerns when they learn their parents are splitting up.
It is also very helpful to consider what kinds of things to try to keep top of mind as the couple moves through the legal process whether that means attorneys (collaborative or traditional) or mediators. Sometimes even in the most well -meaning families, people can take sides to support one individual in a way that ultimately doesn’t help the children. Divorce counseling can help both partners keep an eye toward putting the children’s needs first as much as possible.
Most couples engage in just a few sessions of divorce counseling to make sure they are headed down the right path to keep the process amicable and as free from creating “collateral damage” for their children as possible.
Sometimes initial parenting time plans can be set up in divorce counseling, including talking through the pros and cons of “birdnesting”.