Preparing oneself for divorce is not easy. There are many matters to consider, from how they will divide their property to whether they must establish a support agreement. However, most parents would agree that determining child custody and figuring out how to co-parent is one of the most difficult challenges in a divorce.
Thankfully, in certain situations, parents can take classes that can help prepare them.
Do parents have to attend parent education in divorce?
The answer depends on the details of each family’s situation. These courses are not usually an automatic requirement when parents seek a divorce. For example, if parents agree on a custody arrangement, they will probably not have to participate in the parent education program.
However, North Carolina family courts do have the power to order parents to attend parent education seminars in certain circumstances. Courts will likely order parenting education if divorcing parents are stuck in a serious dispute over visitation or custody of their child. And parents could potentially be held in contempt of court if they do not attend these seminars as the court ordered.
What do these seminars cover?
The parent education seminars will mainly address:
- How divorce affects children
- The child’s needs during a divorce
- How parents can handle and mitigate those effects
- How to handle and divide parenting responsibilities
- How co-parents can approach conflict-resolution without involving children
Parents know how to raise their children but separating and divorcing is new territory for families. It can be difficult for parents to know how to move forward.
And co-parenting is not without challenges. Parents’ emotions often still run high, whether they feel anger, guilt or grief. It is unfortunately common that these negative emotions, tensions and conflicts between parents can distract them from their co-parenting efforts.
The goal of the parent education program is to prevent this. The seminar helps parents prepare for the reality of co-parenting after the divorce and helps them understand how they can work together to do what is best for their children.