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Get Back to School with a Parent Advocate
*the following is a re-post from 8/25/11
Summer has sadly come to a close. That must mean that the first day of school has arrived. Most parents look forward to the routine of school and either a break from caring for the kids all day in the summer, or being free of the worry of summer daycare. For some parents, this time becomes very stressful. They may have had a summer of enjoyment with their children with minimal criticisms from the other parent, but the school year just brings new ammunition and new players (teachers, etc.) for court actions.
If you are one of those with an increasing anxiety level about the new school year, I may be able to help you. I understand how the crazy accusations fly in that setting and how players like teachers, principals and school counselors unwittingly become an extension of your ex’s wrath. Your ex may have told them that you suffer from mental illness, when it’s not true. The school professionals may have seen you at a bad moment when you lashed out at your ex. Not knowing how justified you may have been, they now consider you a nut. There may be court orders that are worded in ways that make it seem like you are a bad parent. It may be wreaking havoc on your confidence. You may feel awkward when you go into the school. So what can you do?
On your own, you can work on your confidence and self-esteem. You can use some positive self talk to put in your mind that you are a good parent and will start the school year off with a fresh start to try and put everything in the past. This can work, sometimes. If it doesn’t, if the thought of walking into your child’s school frightens you, or causes a great deal of anxiety and you try to avoid certain school activities because you can’t face the school professionals, or running into your ex, I could be a Parent Advocate on for you.
As a Parent Advocate, my goal is to make life at your child’s school the safe haven that it used to be, pre-divorce. I will help you improve the communication with school professionals and your child’s other parent. If possible, I will facilitate a meeting between you and the necessary school officials. If you’d like me to manage the flow of communication, I will do that. If you’d just like me to attend any meeting involving school matters to be a supportive person in the room, I can do that. If you have any issues with asserting your parental rights, I can make a phone call or send a letter or email on your behalf. I am not as effective as you are when it comes to reviving a relationship with the people involved in your child’s school life, but I can sometimes open a door to a new way of interacting.
As your advocate, I bring credibility back to you if it has been destroyed by your ex or a meddling Parenting Consultant. When someone is willing to stand in your corner, it helps break down any walls that have been built between people. If you’ve been made to look unreasonable or crazy, having the support you will help your image. Sometimes in a divorce battle, the court authorities seem somewhat biased. If you feel like it is an unfair fight, like it’s always the Parenting Consultant and your ex against you, and you feel outnumbered, I can balance the playing field. I can meet with you and your ex, if they are willing, to see how we can get the needs of both parents met so that school can once again become a safe haven and a divorce free zone.
What have you got to lose? It’s a free phone or email consult. Contact me and let’s start the school year off right!
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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