By the age of 16, it is estimated that one in three children will have experienced a separation between their parents. This can cause deep unhappiness for a child, especially if Mum and Dad can’t talk to each other.
You are not alone
Approximately half of separating couples in 2010 had at least one child under 16, and one fifth were under 5. The number of children affected by divorce rose to 100,000 in 2009 and this does not include the children of people who were not married.
Despite being common, it doesn’t make it any easier for anyone involved. It affects children and adults, and affects the way that parents interact with their children.
The evidence suggests that the long term effects can be lessened if parents work together. There is no magic formula, but there are some key points that seem to work:-
- Warm and loving parenting from both parents
- Good relations and co-operation between parents
- Support for the children from extended family and friends
How can we help?
Mediation Now offers free support and advice for parents who live separately. After an initial assessment meeting, the Changing Lives Now course is run over four 1.5 hour sessions, where we focus on communication and conflict management skills. You will also learn how children react to separation and how to minimise the long term effects, by gaining useful tools and tips to help them through it.
The sessions will be run by one of our experienced Mediators, who is also a family law specialist. No one else will be there except the course leader, you and the other parent, so you are free to focus on your children.
Our experience in family law also means that we can help you sort out child maintenance, so that you don’t have to use the CSA / CMOptions
Why should I attend the course?
You should use the service if:-
- You would like to know more about how to help your child through separation
- It is difficult to make arrangements for them with your ex
- You sometimes argue in front of the children
- You haven’t yet sorted out child maintenance
We will also look at whether mediation (or other things) might also help you, and we can give you lots of information.
In the past, this has been a government-funded course and Mediation Now is exploring opportunities for further funding in order to offer this course once again free of charge.