Separation and divorce is a difficult experience. Dr. Blakely Mulder’s goal is to make this transition as smooth and positive as possible. She specializes in processing emotions around the divorce, helping family members utilize coping strategies and grow as individuals, and developing action plans to improve the quality of life going forward. Dr. Mulder works with both adults and children. With children, she helps them process their feelings and make sense of their new family structure. She helps provide parents with strategies for effective communication and co-parenting.
Dr. Mina Ratkalkar recognizes divorce can bring up strong and sometimes contradictory feelings for separating couples and their children. She supports clients wherever they are in the separation and divorce process. Dr. Ratkalkar helps clients individually navigate the significant mental, emotional, and legal transitions involved in divorce. She also provides couples therapy for separating partners as they work toward reducing conflict and establishing themselves as individuals. In addition, Dr. Ratkalkar provides guidance and recommendations to parents on co-parenting, discussing divorce and separation with their children, and setting boundaries and expectations as families co-create the next chapter in their lives.
Throughout her career, Ms. Bridges has worked with families in crisis and has extensive experience in managing relationship difficulties that arise during separation and divorce. Ms. Bridges understands that separation and divorce can be an uncertain, even upsetting transition for all family members – particularly children. By focusing on individual/family strengths, Ms. Bridges encourages her clients to seek common ground and solutions when and where possible with an emphasis on healthy outcomes. To accomplish this goal, she utilizes psychoeducation about family break-ups and positive communication skill-building. Ms. Bridges utilizes an eclectic therapy model based on individual, couple or family needs. She is rostered and certified in Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) which promotes improved self-regulation in times of discomfort, frustration, and crisis. By teaching mindfulness and positive coping skills along with other strategic interventions, Ms. Bridges assists the family in transitioning through the challenges faced during separation and divorce.
Separation and divorce is a difficult time for both partners as well as children. Dr. Parker provides therapy to assist in the transition. Trained as both a psychologist for adults and as a child psychologist, she has education and experience working with all ages and thus can assist any family members needing help. Whether adults decide to be seen together or individually, she provides support to each partner, assists in establishing goals and provides therapy or co-parenting sessions to achieve those goals.
Dr. Lindsey Ohler works with children, families and couples who are transitioning through the separation and divorce process. Providing supportive therapy, she works with children and adolescents to process their emotions in relation to the break-up of their family. Dr. Ohler provides a warm and safe environment for children and teens to share their fear, anger and sadness. Furthermore, with adults she helps individuals
Dr. Colleen Hamilton provides assistance to individuals transitioning following divorce or separation. Her individual work focuses on life-restructuring issues often seen during that time, such as identifying support systems, changing one’s peer groups, and effective co-parenting. As one of our resident child psychologists, she is well versed in helping parents understand, help, and guide their children through the divorce process. Dr. Hamilton also works with parents to develop an effective co-parenting relationship or parallel parenting system.
From the very beginning of her career with a B.S. in Child Development & Family Relationships, Dr. Lepage has been focusing on families, and she has extensive experience working with individuals, couples, parents, and children going through divorce. Dr. Lepage completed both her master’s thesis and doctoral dissertation in Clinical Psychology in the area of developing parenting plans, and is an expert in cooperative co-parenting and parallel parenting. Her combined experience in divorce transitions, child development, parenting plans, and conflict resolution make her highly sought out by people going through separation. She is skilled at helping within the traditional divorce model
Just as every relationship is unique, every separation comes with its own challenges and grief. In the life of a family, separation or divorce is invariably a major event, affecting not only the couple but also their relatives and any children they may have. Seeking therapy around a separation or divorce can help all people involved process the experience and navigate the future. Dr. Varley has experience working individuals, couples, children and families undergoing separation and divorce. He is especially interested in helping children understand and cope with divorce in age-appropriate ways and supporting separating couples in their communications around co-parenting and other important decisions.
Divorce can be a stressful process for the entire family. Dr. Bailey Cole strives to help make the transition as smooth as possible by creating a non-judgmental and empathic environment. He works with the couple together or individually, as well as children as needed, to help process emotions and thoughts associated with the change of the family dynamic. Dr. Cole also works with parents to help them develop co-parenting skills to minimize distress for themselves and their children. Additionally, Dr. Cole focuses on teaching coping skills to ensure self-care throughout the separation and divorce process.
Chapel Hill Office
Dr. Kevin Metz assists couples, families, and children to make the often stressful process of divorce as smooth and manageable as possible. He has significant experience working with children and teenagers who are going through or who have experienced divorce in their family in processing this event and moving through it with a healthy and intact sense of self. Dr. Metz is particularly interested in working with parents through the divorce process to provide parent guidance in creating healthy households after divorce takes place.