The key to a healthy relationship is good communication. Often when things get difficult we get angry or upset and feel we are not understood, things escalate and either it ends up as a row, or to keep the peace we shut down and avoid talking about the issue.
The first step is for me to listen and understand your situation from an objective and non-judgemental perspective. I can help you work through difficult emotions and explore your challenges, supporting you to find clarity on how you will deal with them.
I then teach simple tools that help you remain calm, get clear about what you want to say, say it in a way that gets you heard and invites a thoughtful response. This allows you to explore challenges together and get to understand each other better. This opens up the possibility of finding a way forward that truly supports you both.
These tools will be useful in every area of your life. In your intimate relationship they will:
Invest in your future by laying the foundations for a strong and secure relationship.
I offer one off sessions or a course of 5 sessions to get your committed relationship off to the best start, making sure you have addressed any issues that might cause problems later and to giving you tools that you can use to help you through changes and transitions and bring you closer as you share your life together.
I offer a safe space to bring your challenges and concerns, your frustrations and hurt and find a way forward. I can work with you as a couple or with you separately to work on the more sensitive stuff before tackling it as a couple.
This could be an individual session or a course of 5 which will give you a take-away toolkit for helping you work through any challenges and transitions in the future together.
The format of the consultations will vary in pace, approach and focus depending on your needs. The first step for me is to listen and understand your situation from an objective and non-judgemental perspective. You will be able to speak freely without worrying about protecting others from your emotions.
The next step is to clarify the challenges you are facing and to discuss with you what support would best serve you.
I help you with your emotional and interpersonal issues which may help you resolve differences by yourselves. Should you need a lawyer it will free them up to deal with the legalities. This combined support will help you to make decisions that:
I help you work through difficult emotions such as rage, fear, grief, numbness or a feeling of helplessness and come to a place where you can accept the reality of the situation, be cool headed and feel empowered. I teach you tools that you can use to bring yourself back to this state should you become overwhelmed again at any point between sessions.
Some clients are unaware of the negative effect that they have on their relationship with their ex- partner, their children or on other family members. It is sobering but also empowering to recognise this and then learn how to relate in a more positive way. These skills can be invaluable in the long term, for instance when it comes to discussing the care of the children with your ex-partner.
If you have been in an unequal partnership for many years you may be lacking in self- confidence and feel unable to cope with life after divorce, seeing your fate as one of misery and loneliness. This often leads to feelings of resentment towards your ex-partner and a desire to gain revenge which will cloud your judgement. I can help you to explore a healthier view of your circumstances, begin to take control, recognise that you are entitled to a fair settlement and find your voice. A vision of a realistic and worthwhile future will sustain you through the divorce process, informing your decisions and helping you to approach negotiations flexibly and positively.
I work alongside WatsonMorris Solicitors as part of the team offering their clients extra support where this is needed.
‘Family law is 90% emotional and 10% a combination of legal and financial aspects. The emotional component involves “uncoupling” and the divorce itself consists of the legal and financial aspects.’
– Californian family law attorney Mark Baer.
I offer zoom, telephone and face to face sessions so my support can be timely, such as just before and just after a mediation meeting or court; it also helps to keep costs to a minimum.
I can, with agreement from your lawyer, accompany you to mediation, collaborative or four-way meetings or to court. The aim of the coaching is, however, to give you the confidence to express yourself and hold your own.
Mark and Karen were going through a difficult divorce. They could not come to an agreement about how the children’s care should be shared. In divorce coaching sessions they quickly saw the stress they were causing their children and this gave them the incentive to learn how to take the emotion out of their discussions, get their points of view across and negotiate.
‘We sometimes have to remind each other of the techniques we learned from you, but most of the time we can work together now. So much less stressful for the kids and me! I can actually enjoy my time with them now.’
From another client I supported when he was at an all time low:
‘Hi Clare – I don’t believe that I ever said thank you or explained just how much that I appreciate the help and advice that you gave me. Life is still good and the black dogs have gone away – the divorce drags on. I realise just how close I was to putting my own daughters through trauma and how important it is to seek help when in the depths of depression. I really am so very grateful for the help & guidance that you gave. Many, many, thanks, Andy.’
Another man came for help when he was dealing with the end of his relationship:
‘I wanted help with impartial advice on what I was going through and how to deal with it without taking it on board as guilt. For me I feel the in-face sessions were spot on. I find it difficult to talk about my feelings and I think on a zoom call I could have hidden behind the laptop and not fully engaged. During the sessions I did seem to relax and found it much easier to open up as I get a calming presence from Clare. It really did the job for me and I would 100% recommend somebody else to use you!’