Newcastle and Hexham’s leading divorce and children’s specialist lawyer, Anna Hunter, a Director of Major Family Law, top family lawyers in Ponteland, comments in the Accent Magazine marriages break down for a myriad or reasons. Those circumstances are neatly packaged into 4 broad categories by divorce legislation: adultery, unreasonable behaviour, desertion and separation.

Anyone who has ever suffered upset and turmoil within a relationship, whether it proved terminal or not, knows very well that the problem is usually way more complicated than any of those simple labels.

Or is it?

Is it really that the problem is complex or that the emotions behind the problem are the source of the complexity? Of course, in the same way each relationship is different, so is the answer to that question according to the couple involved.

In real terms, divorces are hardly ever defended these days, so if the end of the relationship is inevitable , is there any point to fighting over the process and prolonging the agony?

The ending of a relationship, no matter how civilised, is anchored in waters of failure, abandonment, rejection, deceit, worry, upheaval and reproach. The difference, it seems lies in how the individuals choose to deal with these issues.

Divorce and separation can be one of the hardest things you will have to deal with. If you have children, then supporting them through the process as well as coping yourself can be extremely difficult.

Increasingly, specialist family law practices are offering clients additional emotional and personal support by way of referral to a family and relationship consultant. Family consultants have the therapeutic skills to guide and support individuals, couples and sometimes children through the period of separation.  What they do is not about trying to rescue the relationship, rather it’s about managing the emotional impact of the ending of the marriage.

Depending on the particular consultant and his or her professional skills, traditional therapy type sessions may be offered, or the approach may be more focused on assisting the individual to manage the emotional and psychological issues that are preventing him or her from effectively dealing with the practical and financial issues and from communicating calmly and effectively with the other party.

In some legal jurisdictions (for example Australia), the role of the family consultant is very much as an advisor to not only the parties but to the Court to actively assist in resolving areas of dispute. In this country, the role is a much more personal one to the individual providing emotional support and coping strategies to allow the individual to come to terms with the situation and to move forward and beyond it.

Here at Major Family Law, we were one of the first practices in the North East to offer the services of a such a consultant, having recognised the difficulties many clients face in trying to deal with the aftermath of their marriage ending.

An experienced relationship consultant, working with individuals, couples and families, the core of Graeme’s practice is the passionate belief that, although we all experience great pain and distress in our lives, we all have the ability to heal and grow through this pain and find more enriching, creative and satisfying lives.

Whilst there have been significant moves in recent years to make the family legal forum less confrontational, individuals do not always find themselves able to resolve their differences in this way without additional support. The benefit of working with a family consultant is that agreement on areas of dispute can often be more readily and swiftly reached, saving not only feelings, but time and money.

Family Consultants and the support they can provide are only just beginning to be a recognised part of the divorce and separation procedure. Not everyone needs the assistance, but when it’s all over bar the shouting, The can be of valuable assistance to move you forward and stop you looking back.

Anna Hunter is a Director at Major Family Law, the Divorce and Family Law Specialists, 12 West Road, Ponteland, Newcastle upon Tyne NE20 9SU

T: 01661 82 45 82 Twitter: @majorfamilylaw

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