Divorce Coach and Mediator

Signs It’s Time to Engage a Parenting Coordinator


The signs indicating that it’s time to hire an attorney are typically readily apparent: You just learned that your spouse is cheating… again. Your former spouse is withholding child support payments… again. You want a divorce, but your spouse refuses to participate amicably. The list is endless, and the clues are many guiding you to the office door of your local divorce lawyer. But, how will you know when it’s time to engage a parenting coordinator? Will you ever know? Will your attorneys or the judge tell you it’s time? As I discussed in recent previous post, “10 Things Co-Parents Need to Know About Parenting Coordination,” Parenting Coordinators are trail-blazing an alternative path for parents to resolve their co-parenting issues outside of the courtroom. Their tireless efforts and willingness to engage with high-conflict relationships are readily embraced by members of the court system, who are otherwise exhausted by the endless volatile battles that rage on and on, ranging from what foods to permit the children to eat to what movies they are permitted to watch. These disputes don’t require legal decision-makers; they require a professional to help the parents make good decisions for their kids, and even sometimes an umpire to make the final decisive call.

Allyson Tomchin, LCSW, who is a Florida Supreme Court Certified Family Mediator and President of Directive Energy, characterized it best when she said, “You need a parenting coordinator when you are spending more time, money and energy on litigation, than you are spending simply living your life.” Tomchin has the street credentials to support her statement. Her clients’ stories are the ones that we have nightmares about or laugh at like in the movie War of the Roses… until we’re in the same situation fighting over the same stuff. For example:

• When mom and dad spend more money fighting about who is going to pay for school uniforms rather then on the actual uniforms themselves… it’s time to call a parenting coordinator; or
• When parents debate over a shellfish allergy, when a doctor’s report is sitting right in front of them… it’s time to call a parenting coordinator; or
• When parents bicker about which “A” school is better for “my child,”… it’s time to call a parenting coordinator.