What is a Divorce Coach and Why Do I Need One? - Collaborative Family Law Association of St. Louis

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What is a Divorce Coach and Why Do I Need One?

Erika Ottolini

If you and your spouse choose to resolve your divorce through the Collaborative Process, you will have the opportunity to work with a variety of professionals tasked with assisting you with specific parts of the divorce. Your attorneys will help you with the legal nuances of your divorce. The financial specialist will help you with asset division, tax issues, and other monetary aspects of your divorce. And a mental health professional will help you with the socio-emotional elements of your divorce as well as assisting you with the parenting plan. The mental health professional in this situation is called a coach. 

While most Collaborative Divorce coaches are practicing therapists, they are wearing a different hat in the Collaborative Divorce Process:  the hat of coach.  A coach is someone you turn to when you want to do something well, learn a new skill, language, or technique, or a way of relating. The divorce coach fulfills that role by facilitating important conversations, focusing on clients’ mental health, monitoring the collaborative spirit of the endeavor when necessary, and guiding the clients across the finish line of the divorce process.

It can be said that a therapist is someone who helps clients as they unpack their “bags,” look at all the contents, and evaluate what to put back in for the next part of the journey. A divorce coach, on the other hand, helps the clients pick up their repacked bags and carry them across the street to where the next leg of the journey begins. 

Collaborative Divorce is about uncoupling your lives and reforming your relationship so that it works better for your entire family. Collaborative Divorce attempts to do this in an amicable fashion with as little trauma to family members as possible. The divorce coach is there to lean on during this challenging time so that everyone crosses the finish line feeling resolved and ready and on the path to healing.

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