Parents may seek my help on their own as a Co-Parenting Coach or be referred to me as a Parenting Coordinator or Parenting Facilitator.
- Co-Parenting Coach for one or both co-parents: This position is flexible, not defined by law, and is tailored to meet the parents’ goals.
- Court-appointed Parenting Coordinator: This position is defined by Texas law and serves as a kind of mediator to help resolve disputes between divorcing parents.
- Court-appointed Parenting Facilitator: This position, also defined by Texas law, requires a little more hands-on approach, more like a case worker.
I am also qualified to provide services as a mediator, parenting coordinator, parenting facilitator or counselor in the New Ways for Families Program. Many of our family court judges in the area are referring divorced families to this program. If you need to find a counselor or other professional in the Austin area who is trained in this program, please click here. If you have further questions about this program, please contact me. I am happy to talk with you about it.
The role of Co-Parenting Coach isn’t defined by law and doesn’t require court appointment. As a Co-Parenting Coach, I work with single parents or with both co-parents to improve their co-parenting skills and relationships. Even if your child’s other parent isn’t actively involved in co-parenting, your relationship with that parent matters to your child. We work together to help you develop and meet your goals to co-parent effectively for the benefit of your child or children.
- Identify disputed issues and areas of conflict;
- Clarify communication and reduce misunderstandings;
- Clarify priorities as co-parents;
- Learn how to problem solve;
- Learn to collaborate for their children’s benefit;
- Understand and reach agreements about their co-parenting plan.
- Comply with the court’s order regarding parenting time, rights and responsibilities;
- Implement their parenting plans while minimizing conflict;
- Learn and practice co-parenting skills, problem solving skills, conflict management skills, and communication skills for two-home families
- Prepare a proposed joint agreement regarding parenting issues for attorney review and court approval.
Parenting Coordination is a confidential process. The Parenting Coordinator does not ever report to the court except to state whether the process should continue and does not testify in court. Parenting Coordination empowers parents to develop skills that help them manage their co-parenting responsibilities and relationship for the benefit of their children without court involvement, which helps to minimize legal costs.
Parenting Facilitation is a non-confidential process, because the Parenting Facilitator can testify in court and does make reports to the court periodically about how the process is working and whether both parties are working constructively to improve their co-parenting relationship. The Parenting Facilitator may make recommendations to the court about how disputed issues should be resolved. The Parenting Facilitator’s records of the process are not confidential and may be requested by either party for use in legal proceedings. Parenting Facilitation is effective when accountability to the court is necessary to keep the process on track.
Because of the difference in confidentiality, the same person cannot serve as both Parenting Coordinator and Parenting Facilitator for the same family. So you will need to examine which role best fits your particular family situation. I’d be happy to help you sort that out.