"Graine Mediation brings couples and families together to resolve tough issues... before things get out of hand."
What is Marital Coaching?
At Graine Mediation, Marital Coaching is based on similar methods and principles as our Mediation practice:
- Couples and families must come to sessions with a true desire to plan for and implement real change in their lives and relationships.
- Problems are assessed by the clients and the coach.
- Goals are identified.
- Concrete action plans for resolution of disputes and issues are discussed and created.
- Plans are implemented by the clients with guidance from the coach.
3 Guiding Principles of Marital Coaching
- Your power lies in working on your relationships in the present and for the future. Whatever happened in the past between the couple cannot be undone. However, your past experiences do not need to absolutely rule the present. Are you ready for a fresh start?
- A marriage or partnership is an entity unto itself. In order to save a faltering relationship, each party must do what is best for the relationship as a whole even when that is not what is most comfortable for the individual parties. This is sometimes in the form of a compromise; sometimes in the form of giving up certain freedoms; and, sometimes in the form of maintaining the status quo.
- The only behavior that you can change is your own. If your spouse or partner chooses to change, it is not because you made him or her change. It is because his or her desire to have a good relationship with you is so strong that it overrides other interests and behaviors. This is the goal.
- Marital Coaching is goal-oriented and action-based. Marital Coaches help couples and families focus on concrete problems and the creation and implementation of the best plans to support and build healthy and satisfying relationships. Coaching clients must be free from serious psychopathology.
- Marriage & Family Therapy is a healing profession which includes mental health diagnoses and treatment. Therapists are trained to diagnose and treat mental, emotional and psychological disorders, as well as help couples and families move through difficult situations. Therapists focus on the problems of individual family members as the key to solving marriage and family problems.
- Marital Coaching views the failure of human relationships as the cause of most human suffering. Marital Coaches focus on what it is will take to heal the relationship itself and less on what is “wrong” with the individual parties. Marital coaches believe that much of life’s sadness, disappointments, and frustrations are the result of relationship troubles, not individual problems.
- Marriage & Family Therapy views the individual’s happiness as just as important as the health of the relationship. The therapist works on finding ways to both diagnose and treat the individuals’ mental health issues as well as support the family/couple’s well being as a unit.
- Marital Coaching is a collaborative, problem-solving process between coach and clients. A Marital Coach provides clients with support, information and guidance that complement the clients’ own motivation to succeed in their relationship goals going forward. The clients’ desire to be happy within the relationship is a key to success in Marital Coaching.
- Marriage & Family Therapists are expected to figure out what is “wrong” with the clients and then come up with solutions to “fix” the problems. In particular, therapists encourage clients’ to be aware of past injuries and to understand the relationship between those events and traumas and the clients’ emotional processing of the past as it relates to their present situation.
- Marital Coaching helps clients find and implement behavior choices that support and enhance their relationships, not focus on feelings and past traumas.
- Marriage & Family Therapists encourage introspection and work on the individuals’ mental health and feelings as well as building bridges from the past to the present and future.
Much of life’s sadness, disappointments, and frustrations are the result of relationship troubles, not individual problems.
"Marital Coaching assumes that the couple desires to stay together and that they are seeking a better way of working out their differences. Marital Coaching involves planning for a couple's long-term success in communicating needs, resolving current issues, and avoiding future conflict."
- "Divorce Mediation assumes that a couple is headed for divorce. Divorce mediation involves planning for the spouses’ individual lives in terms of parenting their children, financially supporting two separate households, and the division and distribution of their assets and debts."
- Married Couples who want to stay married. Marital Coaching is an excellent choice when there are bumps (and serious bumps) in the road, but neither party considers divorce to be a good option.
- Unmarried Committed Couples. Marital Coaching is helpful for umarried couples who are having problems navigating through tough situations, but want to stay together for the long term.
- Families. Marital Coaching is a great alternative to therapy or counseling when spouses wish to focus on tackling the problems at hand and not spending time and energy on what “went wrong” in the past.
- Financial Decision-Making. Marital Coaching’s emphasis on goal-oriented problem-solving is a good fit for relationship problems involving money. Also, Robin Graine, JD, CDFA, your coach, has years of experience helping clients with their financial matters as a divorce lawyer, divorce mediator and Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA).
- Step And Blended Family. With all of the many personalities and past “baggage” inherent in step and blended family situations, Marital Coaching’s “fresh start” approach cuts through painful past episodes and helps families focus on getting along better today.
- Different Parenting Styles. When battles over child-rearing techniques are causing stress in the household, Marital Coaches help parents reach compromises that work well for both the parents and their children.
Certain individual and family situations are not appropriate for Marital Coaching. If any of the following personal and family situations exist, Graine Mediation will not be able to accept your case for coaching (or mediation), but can help with referrals if needed:
- High levels of anger/aggression;
- A history of domestic violence;
- A history of child abuse/neglect;
- Inability/unwillingness to tell the truth;
- Any form of mental illness, personality disorder or substance abuse that renders a client unable to work within the realities of the present-day situation and participate in planning for the future;
- Self destructive impulses/behaviors; and
- Extreme dependency on others
Your past experiences do not need to rule the present.