The transition that comes along with divorce often feels minimized and invalidated by our court system.  The emotional, financial, and spiritual costs of divorce are significant, and many times decisions are made in the process that are difficult to live with afterward.  The outcome can be very disappointing, often leaving families disempowered. After the legal divorce is completed, people often are left with an emotional "residue" of anger, betrayal, and sadness.  

Ann Cerney has training and experience helping individuals and families create sustainable parenting agreements during divorce, and following a divorce, come to peace with the agreements that have been made in the legal system.  There are times when parents must renegotiate parenting plans to meet the needs of growing children, and Ann works as a mediator and advisor for co-parents who are struggling with changing needs of children and families post-decree.

Ann is a trained mediator, collaborative divorce coach, parenting coordinator,and psychotherapist.  She understands child development, family dynamics, and high conflict personalities. As a mediator and parenting coordinator, Ann works with families pre-, during, and post-divorce to help parents develop and work with existing parenting plans to refocus on the well-being of the children. Ann has been involved with parents who have significant difficulty communicating and making agreements with each other with regards to parenting issues. 

Ann is often a referral source for Dupage County Domestic Relations court when parents are unable to make decisions on behalf of their child(ren) or follow their parenting plans consistently, including court-ordered counseling and parenting coordination.  Ann coordinates with other involved professionals, including attorneys, GAL's for the children, teachers, therapists, and extended family as needed and appropriate.  

As a psychotherapist, Ann has experience working with couples to form healthier attachments, teaches communication skills to help with problem-solving and management of historical feelings and patterns of behavior. She also works with parents to help strengthen relationships with children post-divorce, and whose children are estranged from them during and after divorce.  Ann has been involved in reunification therapy with parents and children, when allegations of child alienation exist. Ann is experienced in helping individuals who are grieving during and after divorce, to rebuild a healthier family and new relationships.

As a collaborative practice divorce coach, Ann helps individuals and families maintain focus, dignity, and integrity through the collaborative process.  In this role, Ann supports her clients as well as the collaborative professional team in helping couples make their own sustainable decisions about the issues involved in marital dissolution.Ann has been a collaborative practice trainer since 2011 (Trainers for the Advancement of Collaborative Practice TACP).

There is also a benefit to having a coach involved when a litigated divorce is in process. Ann helps individuals who are in litigation understand and take accountability for their part in the process, develop realistic expectations, and communicate more effectively with their attorneys. In this process, legal issues of marital dissolution are the focus, and emotional needs often are seen as deterrents to be put aside. It is important to have an objective mental health professional who can provide support and guidance. Families and friends are often well-meaning, but may have an adverse effect on the resolution of marital settlement issues. Attorneys are able to focus on the legal issues when their clients' emotional needs are not driving their behavior during the divorce. 

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