• Parental Alienation

    Everyone, by now, is familiar with the term Parental Alienation. I am not going to write about what is Parental Alienation. The subject has been widely documented as it is. What I want to write about is how to prevent it. Whether it is deemed illegal or categorised as a mental illness is not going to help find a solution. What needs to be taken into consideration is that Parental Alienation happens mostly during and after a divorce/separation. It is fuelled by high and overwhelming emotions and if the parent who is spiralling out of control into these emotions is not given proper emotional support, no amount of court orders,…

  • Who am I?

    These 3 small words hold the key to unlocking your full potential. As a keen Choice Theorist, most of my work is based on Choice Theory, the work of William Glasser, MD, and is the culmination of some 50 years of theory and practice in psychology and counselling. During the process of learning Choice Theory, one is introduced to the “Brain Chart” (see here). To move beyond the intimidation and complexity of the chart, one needs to at least complete a Basic Intensive Training in Choice Theory, Reality Therapy and Lead Management. In order to apply this knowledge in my everyday Family Therapy Practice, I have deconstructed and reconstructed it in a way that I…

  • Mediation: A must for separating parents.

    The end of your relationship has ended, and truth is, no one can really prepare you for the emotional turbulence that is about to be experienced. Sure, every separation is different, and the intensity of emotions will vary from person to person, but the ending of a relationship remains one of the most traumatic experience some people will encounter in their lifetime. As we were growing up, we were most likely raised with certain life principles such as respect, kindness, acceptance, forgiveness … the list goes on, yet when facing a painful separation, all these principles seem to fly out the window. Suddenly, two adults who were seemingly well educated…

  • Divorce/separation & Co-parenting

    Most articles that I read on Co-Parenting refer to co-parents as 2 parents who have gone through a divorce/separation. They refer to co-parents as exes; ex husband/wife; ex lover; ex partner. Either way, the reference is focused on 2 people who are now apart after having been together and have had children together. The focus is then on the many challenges these 2 people encounter when it comes to being separated/divorced parents. Some articles make mention of the ones who have natural friendships which continued after the divorce/separation, others mention the moments which got them to realise how much they were hurting the children and made a choice to change…

  • Right or Wrong?

    I see many parents that are in conflict, and some that can’t even be in the same room as each other. People ask me how I remain neutral in those instances, that there must be one that is right and one that is wrong. Truth is, when in conflict, both are right and both are wrong. I had a parent in tears once, begging me to believe their side of the story. Reality is that it doesn’t matter to me who is right and who is wrong. We all have our own perception and that perception will drive our behaviour. Since I am here to assist resolve a conflict, I…

  • Is Mediation right for us?

    I often hear people tell me that Mediation is not right for them, to what I always answer: “What are you trying to accomplish that cannot be done in Mediation? It is true that there are some exceptions to this rule where mediation may not be appropriate like in cases of domestic violence, for example. The aim of mediation is to assist parties in resolving their disputes amicably through a negotiated settlement, without going to court. One of the motivations behind this is that the courts are over-flowing with cases as numerous disputes are brought before the courts daily and it can be months before your matter can be heard.…

  • Discipline

    I so often hear parents complain of their relationship with their children and the reason being because they are the “disciplinarian” in the family. My first question to them is: What does discipline mean to you? The answers range from being strict, setting up rules, punishing, keeping them on a straight path through rigid means … but reality is, in order to better our relationships with our children and teach them what we believe are good values to hold growing up, we need to re-frame what discipline actually means. The word “discipline” originates from the Latin word disciplina which means “instruction” and derives from the root discere which means “to…

  • Co-Parenting Etiquette

    As per the children’s ACT, BOTH parents have equal rights and responsibilities unless otherwise stated by a Court of Law. When separating/divorcing from your children’s other parent, a lot has to be reconsidered. While living under one roof does not make a family perfect. Living under two roofs certainly will bring its shares of challenges. Many things will have to be re-thought and although the best interest of the children must always come first, parents have to agree on a suitable arrangement which will fit with their new schedule. Co-Parenting as such is a wonderful concept but not everyone is able to dive right into it. Many emotions are at…

  • I’m Stuck

    While a divorce/separation is painful, now and again, I meet someone who is really struggling to move on with their life. The first thing to understand is that healing isn’t a linear process. To experience ups and downs are normal. You have been married/together for a certain period of time and a divorce/separation shakes what you know your life to be. It is new and like many changes, it is scary. But while it is natural for this life changing event to take time to sink in, to accept it, even to regret it, it should not consume you and keep you from moving on. If you are finding yourself…

  • Pointing Finger

    Many people that I meet for counselling or mediation have a finger to point at the other party. I like to begin with establishing that no one is ever blameless. Sure, some people are downright wrong and even bad, but that doesn’t mean that the other person is blameless. Finger Pointing is defined as casting blame or assigning the blame for something to someone else. If a person feels they are the victim of someone else’s behaviour, pointing the finger at that person will not provide a sustainable solution. If you look at the other person, or situation, with a sense of right and wrong according to your value system and perception,…