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Clarity about the Parenting Consultant Nightmare
I am a little baffled when I reach out to people to make them aware of my book and they vehemently decline to have anything to do with it, thinking that it is promoting the use of Parenting Consultants or Parent Coordinators. That is absolutely the opposite of what my point of publishing this book was all about.
Is everyone missing the word “nightmare” in the title? It is called, “The Parenting Consultant Nightmare” for a reason. I could have called it, “The Parenting Consultant Myth”, or “The Parenting Consultant Lie”, too. The purpose of the book is to try to get to people before they sign on with a pc so that they know the reality of what having a meddling court authority in your life entails. I also made the book a user guide to pcs because one reality is if you have a high conflict divorce situation, then you most likely have had a pc appointed. Pcs are handed out by the family court, judges and promoted by attorneys like candy to a child. Heavily promoted as “help” when they are anything but help!
Anyway, there seems to be a great deal of misunderstanding about my book, so let me clear that up right now.
I have been helping people in regards to the truth about Family Court for 15 years. My own case was fed by family court and its authorities, even though we had little in the way of assets to fight over and very little money to spend in the family court, but because of the relationship between my ex and I, we slipped into the family court quicksand looking for remedies. I learned a little too late that the only real remedy in family court is the equivalent of a prison cell. If you go down the path of third party “neutral” problem solvers, your life is no longer your own and the remedy of a parenting consultant/coordinator appointment means that you lose control of the legal custody of your children. That is what you give up when you sign up with a pc or even a guardian ad litem.
So why the book? When I work with parents who have a pc that they cannot get removed from their case, they learn the realities of what has been imposed on their life and their children’s lives. From someone who has experienced it firsthand, who is not an attorney, they can hear the truth about the trap in terms that you and I can understand, rather than the legal lingo that doesn’t make sense to most of us court outsiders. I cannot help them get rid of a pc, but if I can get to people prior to the appointment of a pc, I do help them avoid signing up for that kind of hell, but if they already have the court order, the most I can do is help them minimize the effects in their life.
Usually, people come to me when they are at their wit’s end. They are emotionally, physically and financially exhausted and they do not know where to turn. Attorneys do not offer anything helpful at this point. They just refer people to the pc or tell them it is what it is, deal with it, and send people away with a nice bill for the advice they gave. They have no idea how overwhelming the whole process is for someone who just wants their right to parent their child back. After some straight talk with me, they feel better and they have some clarity. They might be angry that no one stopped them from signing an agreement appointing a parenting consultant/coordinator, but they finally feel heard and understood. They are also, hopefully, empowered after talking to me, even for just a couple hours. Everyone I have worked with has suggested that I become a pc, a lawyer or that I write a book. I took their advice on two of those suggestions.
The last thing I ever expected in my life was to have the crazy eight year battle I had in the family court. The last thing I ever expected, in any way, was to be a part of this crazy system as a career choice. I set out on this journey knowing that it is my calling. I got the call from God to use this knowledge and not to waste all the truth I had and experience received from the school of hard knocks that is the family court system. This knowledge was given to me so that I would be an active participant in life and appreciate the gifts I had and teach others to choose not to waste their lives or their parenting stuck in the system. There has absolutely been some divine intervention that put me on the right path.
Ten years ago, I never would have put my thoughts on a blog for the world to read. That would have scared me to death. But I knew I had to help people who would come into the system after me. I wanted to avoid like the plague including the role of parenting consultant in my business, but then my clients begged me to reconsider. They felt that because I knew how meddling most pcs were, I could offer the services of a parenting consultant of a different breed. I took it to heart. I am what some would call the reluctant pc, but I do know it is necessary. I am hoping to build my practice so that I can train more pcs to act responsibly in the role. No meddling, just decision making. I am working with the family innocence project to find a new way to lift up our families, rather than tear them apart, even when they must choose divorce. Some relationships are toxic and you should be able to correct the wrong choice in a partner, but you also must be protected from the injustice of the family court system. Now, the person who I am today, can write a book to offer help and hope to those stuck with communication tips and coping strategies. That is what my book is, a guide for you and I have put it out there without fear of the ramifications of doing so.
So, from the beginning, my clients encouraged me to offer pc services. I offer that, but also try to dissuade people from starting down that path. If they already are court ordered to have a pc, then I will take that case on without all the meddling and nonsense that goes with it.
Clients also encouraged, well actually, begged me, to write a book about parenting consultants and I have. I do not understand the comments people give me against the book, thinking it promotes parenting consultants/coordinators. It absolutely does not. Read it and count how many times I suggest that if you do not have a parenting consultant, not to ever agree to have one!
The only thing I have not done that people have begged me to do is to become an attorney. I am happy with where I am at in life and career. As an attorney I would have to “play ball” and respect judges and other attorneys, court authorities when I would not truly have respect for them. I will not do that. I will not support this system that destroys families and children in that way. As a coach though, I can be the one person on your side. The one person to bring sanity to an absolutely insane situation. So that is why I do what I do.
Consider buying the book so that you can learn the truth about my book and why I do the things I do. And stay tuned, more books are on the way, exposing more reality about the family court system. Just in case you are wondering, I am not one of them. If you want to know more about me and why I do what I do, give me a call!
About lifesdoorsmediationI am a mediator, Life and Divorce Coach and an Instructor of a High Conflict Divorce Program.
© 2010-2017 by Susan Carpenter and Life’s Doors Mediation. All rights reserved
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