In an attempt to improve my relationship with my teenage children, I have contacted a counselor to attend with my kids.
However, my ex is very against counseling. She has contacted a lawyer and is now threatening to take away my visitation rights if I move forward with the counseling.
What can I do here?
Typically, the laws of the states want to promote a health relationship with both parents, and at least in Pennsylvania, we see the courts encourage family counseling when it can help repair relationships or assist with transitions like divorce.
Often the courts in Pennsylvania like to see the parent proposing counseling first suggest the idea to opposing party and seek agreement in moving forward with therapy rather than just starting the children in counseling with no notice to the other parent.
This assumes the parents share in decision-making, which is referred to as legal custody in Pennsylvania.
Assuming decision-making is shared, the decision to enroll the children in therapy should be mutual.
You should consult with one of our local attorneys to see what remedies there may be through the court, as it may be necessary if your ex will not agree to the therapy.
If the opposing party unreasonably withholds agreement to enroll the children, it may be necessary to file a motion or petition with the court requesting the judge order counseling.
Remember, I am unable to provide you with anything more than divorce tips for men, so please consult a domestic litigation attorney in your area to obtain specific advice as to the laws in your state and how they impact your potential case.
Mat Camp is a former Lexicon Services Online Editor, who focused on providing a comprehensive look into all aspects of the divorce experience. On MensDivorce.com, he concentrated on issues, such as parenting time, custodial rights, mediation, the division of assets, and so much more.
Mr. Camp used the wealth of experience of Cordell & Cordell attorneys to bring tangible answers to reader questions in Ask a Lawyer articles, as well as offer a step by step process through the divorce experience with Cordell & Cordell Co-Founder and Principal Partner Joseph E. Cordell in Divorce 101: A Guide for Men.
Mr. Camp used thorough research to highlight the challenging reality that those who go through divorce or child custody issues face. He helped foster the continued success of the Men’s Divorce Survival Guide, the Men’s Divorce Podcast, and the Men’s Divorce YouTube series “Attorney Bites.”