Pasadena Family Attorney Recommends Divorce Process that Reduces Drama

Published on Nov 27, 2019

A divorce process that includes professional co-parenting advice and reunification therapy sessions are preferable to the typical divorce and the jarring change it brings, according to Certified Family Law Specialist, Donald P. Schweitzer.

In a podcast on the topic of co-parenting and reunification, the Pasadena-based attorney opined that run-of-the-mill divorces can result in “very tough” circumstances with damaging impacts, especially when there are children in the fracturing photo.
The podcast was one of the recent episodes of the regular “Exhibit A” that Schweitzer hosts. His guest was Ria Severance, a licensed marriage and family therapist in Pasadena.

In the podcast, Severance said people going through a divorce suffer major stress coming from their lives being undone from what they knew themselves to be, sometimes having to sell their homes and relocating, their standard of living dropping, and the kids needing to change schools. It’s like suddenly learning to swim right when the ship is already sinking, she says.

“And ironically or paradoxically, it’s a prime moment to learn to swim and to develop the skills needed to create that life from the ground up in ways that you may never have,” Severance explained in the podcast.

For kids, the prospect of their parents divorcing already causes so much anxiety than many children could ever cope with on their own. And if the couple wasn’t the best parents before, it gets worse during the divorce process and afterwards, Severance says.

She advises to consult with experts who have had experience dealing with different situations and various cases, and especially those who have had enough mediation training, or have been advising people on co-parenting and reunification.

In some cases, parents may have to go through reunification therapy, which focuses on the individual parent making adjustments, with expert guidance, in order to make it easier for the child to adapt to the divorce environment, or to connect properly with the parent who the child is expected to spend most of his or her time with.

Reunification therapy is usually resorted to when a child has a favorite between the father and mother, and somehow is alienated with one of them – the “target” parent. Even with this kind of therapy, everyone going through the process – father, mother, or child – has to be guided and prepared emotionally for the therapy to be effective, Severance said.

Schweitzer and Severance also talked about the other programs that are available for former couples and their children so they could eventually turn things around and “become their best selves” after a divorce.

Schweitzer is a Certified Family Law Specialist with over 20 years of trial experience, specializing in all manner of family law, including divorce, child custody, and domestic violence.

Schweitzer’s “Exhibit A” podcast has been on for several episodes and has discussed a variety of topics related to the firm’s core expertise – family law, divorce and estate planning – where he exchanges ideas with and elicits advice from other experts in those areas.

Some of the past episodes of the podcast can be accessed through the firm’s website,

The Law Offices of Donald P. Schweitzer are located at 201 South Lake Ave Suite. 800, in Pasadena. For more information, call (626) 683-8113.

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