speach bubbles

Services

services 002Direct Consultation with Children in the Mediation Process

We provide the facility for children to be included in the mediation process.

Research indicates that at the time of separation children feel as though they no longer have a voice in the future structure of their family. They have anxieties about how the new arrangements are going to work and how it will impact upon their lives in terms of maintaining friendships, schooling, relationships with extended family group members, etc.

The Divorce and Separation Centre offer children an opportunity to express their views and wishes about the issues affecting them post separation. Parents are routinely encouraged to consider inviting their children to participate directly in the mediation process.

We believe that most children appreciate the opportunity to be heard directly.

Parents are assured that:

Children will not be asked to make choices or decisions

Parental authority is respected

Children are seen only with the agreement of both parents

We will discuss fully with them the process and purpose of a “listening meeting” before involving children

When are children involved?

Children can be invited to meet with the mediator

At an early stage, to ensure that their issues are included in the parental agenda

Once options have been identified and explored, in order to hear their views and take them into account

At the end, to communicate and explain proposed future arrangements and to “fine-tune” them in light of children’s response

The stage that parents are at in negotiating their future arrangements is likely to be a key factor in deciding when to involve children. With highly conflicted couples, or couples at very different stages in accepting the end of the marriage or relationship, early consultation with children is unlikely. The mediator’s discussion with the parents about the purpose and process of involving children will guide decisions on timing.

Confidentiality

Children and parents are told that this can be an opportunity for children to talk privately with the mediator. Parents will only be told what children wish them to hear (with the important exception to confidentiality in relation to risk of harm).

Kids in the Middle: http://voicesinthemiddle.org.uk/
The Parenting Plan: https://www.cafcass.gov.uk/grown-ups/parenting-plan.aspx

speech marks 002 66 100

The mediator helped us to get where we needed to be. Thank you!

Divorce and Separation Centre (Head Office)

Bridge House
1 Brighton Road
Redhill
Surrey
RH1 6PW
Phone:  01737 772 333
Fax:  01737 767 090
E-mail:  office@fml.uk.com

Office hours are 09:00 to 17:00 Monday to Friday.