For Professionals

New Ways for Families is an new intervention designed to avert or mitigate high conflict situations during separation or divorce.  It is valuable when a family is restructuring in the midst of the divorce process or at any point post divorce.It has been proven effective in diverting many families from litigation and the court system. New Ways is designed to provide parents and their children with skills for resilience during this time of significant change in the family before making big decisions. The skills developed during the counseling help parents arrive at decisions, resolve their differences, and strengthen their abilities to co-parent.  New Ways is about finding balance and keeping the focus on moving forward.  New Ways involves four basic steps:

New Ways involves four basic steps


The process begins with the signing of a retainer agreement to participate in New Ways by mutual consent of both parents and/or getting a court order to participate in New Ways. Typically the individual parent counseling sessions are confidential, whereas the parent-child sessions are not confidential and feedback may be provided to the attorneys and/or the court.


Each of the parents are assigned to their own individual counselor with whom they will complete three to five (number of sessions determined by counselor) counseling sessions separately during which they will:
(A)   Prepare a behavioral declaration for the other parent consisting of a list of

  • parenting concerns
  • parenting strengths
  • parenting plan requests


(B)   Participate in individual counseling sessions in which specific communication and co-
parenting skills are taught, modeled, and practiced (i.e. work-books, exercises, role-playing,
coaching, etc.) The focus will be on developing

  • flexible thinking
  • managed emotions
  • moderate behaviors


The children will also be seen with the parents by a child counselor for two sessions with each parent individually, and then one session with both parents:



The parents assisted by the child counselor will teach their children the skills to develop better resilience.



The parents assisted by the child counselor will demonstrate their newly acquired skills in listening to their children’s concerns regarding the separation/divorce.



The family will meet with the child counselor to discuss how the parents will more effectively communicate and make decisions regarding the family’s future and the implementation of a parenting plan.


Can assist with the development of appropriate and mutually agreed upon parenting plan

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