The Child Assessment and Training Center of Denver is proud to offer training classes for those seeking professional development.
Training topics include:
Play Therapy Techniques, introductory and advanced
Supervision toward obtaining Registered Play Therapist (RPT) status
Therapy in the case of High-Conflict Divorce (See below FAQ):
High-Conflict Divorce FAQ:
Is there a credentialing process or certification to work with high conflict divorce families?
Not that I know of. While anyone can work with a family in a high conflict divorce situation, it is recommended that you have training or work with a supervisor.
I don’t want to work with high conflict families. Can I just say that to parents at the outset of therapy?
Yes, it is possible to tell parents that you don’t work with high conflict situations. However, sometimes the situation changes to be high conflict when it was not before. Seeking supervision on what to do next is essential in this situation.
What is the impact of high conflict divorce on children?
Divorce doesn’t have to be a negative experience for all children. High conflict divorce is damaging to all children who experience this conflict.
What age are the children in a high conflict divorce?
The age of the children can vary from infancy to adult children in high conflict settings. Similarly, high conflict divorce occurs across all socioeconomic status, race, and sexual orientations.
I don’t want to testify in court. Can I just tell the family experiencing the high conflict divorce that I refuse to testify?
Very often therapists are asked to testify in high conflict divorce cases. It is always a good idea to speak with the attorney first to determine what the goal is for your testimony. Seeking supervision prior to court testimony is a good idea.
Does the term “high conflict divorce” only refer to the first marriage between a couple?
A divorce can be considered high conflict regardless of the number of times the person has been married. A couple may start out in a collaborative fashion and find themselves in a high conflict situation following the closure of the divorce or post decree.
What percentage of divorces are considered high conflict?
20% of all divorce cases are considered high conflict, requiring significant court involvement and decision making
What characterizes a high conflict divorce?
Families in a high conflict divorce situation find high degrees of anger and distrust between parties. Additionally, the hostility between parents remains high with frequent court actions. Often restraining orders or no contact orders are in place. One or both parents may have been in jail at some time throughout or after the divorce is finalized. Very often, one or both parents sabotage the child’s relationship with the other parent.
I started working with a family and their child. The parents seem to be civil to one another in the beginning, but now the situation is much different. It seems that the parents might be in a high conflict situation. What should I do?
It can happen that parents work well together for awhile and then something shifts in their dynamic, causing the situation to be more high conflict. Often this happens when one of the parents starts dating or finds a new partner. If the situation becomes high conflict and you find yourself in the middle of a high conflict situation, seek supervision immediately.
Should parents meet together to discuss their children in a high conflict situation?
In most therapeutic settings, it makes sense for parents to meet together with a therapist to discuss their child or children. In high conflict situations, it is very rarely a good idea for parents to be in the same room.
I am in a high conflict situation with a family. The father thinks I am aligned with the mother. What should I do?
When possible, it is ideal to work with high conflict families with another colleague. It is easier to do this when there is more than one child in the family. This way, parents feel like they have an advocate in one of the therapists. It is also easier to agree when two other people are telling you the same thing. If you are in a situation where a parent feels you are aligned with the other, attempt to correct the situation. If you cannot, it be time to refer. Seek supervision prior to taking action.
I have a family in a high conflict divorce situation. They are taking up much more time than any of my other clients. What should I do?
It is important to have a communication plan with families at the commencement of therapy. Things like phone calls, emails, and additional time outside of the session should be outlined with a specific cost associated with each. When parents know this to begin with, they are not surprised to be billed for additional time.
Do you provide supervision?
Yes, the High Conflict Divorce Collaborative provides supervision at the rate of $150/hour. An hour is billed in 30 minute increments. Dr. Kimberly Merendino is an approved supervisor through ACS for Licensed Professional Counselors, AAMFT for Marriage and Family Therapists and APT for Registered Play Therapists. Suvi Miller provides supervision for Clinical Social Workers.
Is training available on high conflict divorce?
Yes, we are currently working on a series of trainings that will be provided online. For more information on in person trainings, please contact us here.