The secret of change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old, but on building the new.
New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings.
Along with death, divorce is one of the most traumatic experiences a person can go through. It is accompanied by major losses: dreams go up in smoke, you lose your partner and his/her friends and family members, you may have to change your lifestyle because you have fewer resources, being a parent suddenly becomes more complicated, etc. For children too, divorce is a major event that leaves a lasting mark on their lives.
However, as opposed to a death, someone going through a divorce does not necessarily experience the same kind of social support. It is important, though, that each person is given the space to process this trauma at their own pace and with the best possible support. I would like to be of such support and have therefore specialised in divorce counseling for children and adults. With my book "One Heart, Two Houses" I have created a guide to support parents who are separating. Currently, the book is available only in Dutch but I'm working on an English version.
You can also come and see me (in person or online) with all your questions and concerns before, during and after the divorce. Family or partner meetings in my practice are also an option. In this way, for example, a divorce notification can take place on neutral ground and with professional support.
from me, to you:
a video and all of my publications, free to download
Above you will find the video 'from ex-partners to co-parents, relay races for the advanced'.
- The video is currently only available in Dutch and with Dutch subtitles. I'm working on English subtitles.-
The many responses and feedback have helped me make some improvements to the video: the final result is a little shorter than the original version, gender neutral and the tips have been given extra attention. One comment in particular has really stuck with me: that of a rejected parent who wondered what difference a video like this could make.... That's a legitimate question.
I hope from the bottom of my heart that it can at least contribute to separating and separated parents (and all the professionals who come into contact with them) better comprehending how important it is for a child to (be allowed to) have a meaningful relationship with both parents. That this understanding becomes second nature to each and everyone of us and that all noses are pointed in the same direction. That parents who find it difficult to separate ex-partnership from co-parenting, or for whom it is not easy to pass on or take on the baton, find the necessary support and understanding and that together we can prevent that children, out of necessity but against their nature, choose to reject a parent to make their lives more bearable...
Please feel free to share with people who you think might benefit. I realise it takes some time to watch the video, but maybe the happiness of a child (and their parents) is worth it?
Below you can find all my publications related to divorce.
- The book and publications are currently only available in Dutch. I'm working on English translations. -
My main work is the book 'One Heart, Two Houses'. From the start I have chosen to make this book available to everyone free of charge so that as many parents and children as possible could make use of it. That's why you won't find the book in bookstores, but you can read it online through Issuu's free services. You have to deal with the advertising though ;-) Initially it was possible to order the book from me but that's no longer practically feasible. For those who still like to have a paper version, there is the download version that you can print yourself. You can also find (and download) the complete content of the book in the other publications.
In the series 'researched' you will find out what we can learn from scientific research with regard to the different aspects of divorce. In the series 'Separation Identity Kits' you get to know your child's world and learn how he/she can experience a divorce at his/her age. You'll get age-tailored tips to make this profound event easier on your child. Finally, in the series of 'divorce tips', you'll find tips for parents to promote the well-being of their children during and after divorce.
I would like to encourage you to read, download, print, share, etc. as much of the information in the book and in the sheets as possible so that as many parents and children as possible can benefit!
You can't go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending.