High-conflict custody cases in Wisconsin are some of the most contentious in the family law system. They can involve hundreds or thousands of dollars in lawsuits, restraining orders, or expert testimony. Parents sometimes ruin their relationships with both their former partner and their children to “win” a custody case. Skilled therapists can be of assistance at this time, but it is important for parents to select a mental health professional who has experience and training in divorce and custody matters.
Experience is critical to therapeutic success in a high-conflict custody case. Spouses and families seeking counseling may have years or decades of resentment that are boiling over. There is a good chance that the couple will have to work towards a resolution of their issues in only a handful of sessions. Therapists in these cases must be well-trained and have years of experience with these clients. Experience will give them the confidence they need to tackle potentially difficult clients.
A therapist in a high-conflict custody case must also understand the unique challenges facing children of divorce. They must be comfortable with co-parenting and other issues in custody and parenting time. Therapists must also understand the legal parameters surrounding a therapy case. They are not simply dedicated to working through their clients’ issues on their own timelines. Therapists in these cases sometimes have to follow a strict set of guidelines and issue reports that may become part of litigation.
High-conflict custody cases always require the input of a therapist. The process cannot occur smoothly with yelling and anger from one or both sides. Instead, these divorces need an intermediary who can listen to both sides and come up with a creative solution within the restrictions that a legal case can bring. An experienced therapist can help turn such a solution into a reality.