Regarding Parenting Discussions

I strongly subscribe to the statement on parenting discussions made by my own mentor, Robert Kirkman Collins, J.D., in his marvelous book, Divorce Mediation: Common Sense and the Crisis of Divorce, and quote it in full here:

The single most important issue in divorce negotiations is working out the arrangements by which children can maintain meaningful and significant contact with both parents after the adults start to reside in separate households.

There are four basic principles that should be honored during these negotiations:

1. Mother and Father know best. More than any licensed professional or academic study, the two people in the room are the best experts on their particular child.

2. Every child and every parent is different, and have a right to have their needs addressed.

3. Every child changes, and should have parental arrangements that have age-appropriate modifications, rather than one fixed at the stage they happen to be on the day of their parents’ divorce.

4. The level of detail needed in the parenting arrangements is a function of the friction that has occurred, or is expected.


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