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‘Are You Listening?’ Conversations with children during parental separation and divorce

Date:25 NOV 2021
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Lisa Parkinson Family Mediation Trainer

Many children and young people want their concerns and suggestions taken into account during parental separation and divorce but do not know who will listen to them. Children need supportive conversations in language that is free from jargon age-appropriate and in no way patronising. Adults' doubts and concerns should not deter us from talking with children who are going through difficult experiences. A recent study1 found that having someone to talk to without being judged is crucial for a child’s mental health and well-being. The Family Solutions Group2 has called for a holistic framework of services for children and separated parents including services to provide children and young people with information consultation support and representation. Child-inclusive mediation (CiM) offers children and young people opportunities to talk and at their request share their concerns and suggestions with their parents. When children feel free to talk and parents become more attuned to their children's needs there are significant benefits for the family as a whole. 


1. Office for National Statistics Children’s Views on Well-being and What Makes...

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