What Conscious Uncoupling Really Means

You’ve probably heard the term “conscious uncoupling” before...perhaps you’ve stumbled on this article because you’re up late on a random Tuesday night, googling this popular term.

You know your marriage is over, but now you need to know if you can “break up” with your spouse peacefully. Can you leave your marriage without your children becoming part of the collateral damage? Can you ask for a divorce without igniting an all-out war?

We’re here to tell you that you absolutely can, and there are professionals out there who are trained to help you and your partner end your marriage without doing emotional harm to yourself, your spouse, or your children. It doesn’t mean that your divorce won’t still cause you and your spouse and even your children pain, but it does mean that trauma and damage can be mitigated during the process.

The Characteristics of a Conscious Family Divorce Process

  1. Prioritizes the social, emotional, developmental, and physical needs of the children

  2. Supports the family as a system

  3. Creates financial and parenting plans that are workable and fair for the whole family

  4. Empowers both partners to articulate their needs and desires in way that supports open and honest communication

  5. Gives spouses the tools and support they need to negotiate, compromise, and advocate

What a Conscious Family Divorce is Not

  1. A battle

  2. Vengeful

  3. Hurtful

  4. Spiteful

  5. Mudslinging

We are frequently moved by the courage of clients who come to us looking to divorce with integrity despite very challenging circumstances. David* and his wife, Maria*, have 2 children together, the youngest of whom is 3. Maria called our office first, in search of information on Conscious Family Divorce Mediation. It turns out, she’s been having an affair for the last year and wants a divorce. David would forgive her if she’d just stay in the marriage and keep their family together, but Maria is done. David is so hurt and angry, and right now, there’s a big part of him that wants Maria to suffer as much as he’s suffering. Even though he’s a good man, he has his limits. He is human, after all.

David and Maria are at a crossroads. They can choose to act from places of hurt, pain, and failure, or, they can choose to rise above the content of what could easily be a messy divorce and focus on how they want to show up in the process and as co-parents together.

This is where conscious divorce professionals step in. Even in the face of the above circumstance, the likes of which we see frequently in our law office, David and Maria can still choose a conscious divorce. They have years of raising their children together ahead of them. David does want what’s best for his children, and he actually wants what’s best for himself too. He and Maria may need help in working around the hurt and blame that can be present under their circumstances. But they also want to look back in 10 years and feel good about how they did their divorce and how they raised their children together as co-parents..

The advantage to choosing a supported conscious divorce process is that we have professionals who are equipped to guide you as you embark on what could be a painful growth process. A conscious attorney mediator can help you set intentions for how you want to show up in your own process, hold space for you when the process gets difficult, and continually guide you back to your intentions when things feel murky. Furthermore, our attorney mediators help families navigate the complicated legal terrain of divorce, such that your lives become as disentangled as possible. This leaves you feeling free to expand as you are meant to during and after your divorce.

Here at Conscious Family, we've put a lot of thought and work into creating a mediation process that supports you in having a low-cost, low-harm divorce that sets you up for a strong co-parenting relationship and a better life going forward. Even if your spouse is not prepared to mediate, our lawyers work hard to achieve that same outcome through negotiation or a court process.

Let us know how we can help.

*David and Maria are fictional characters

Conscious uncoupling was first coined by Katherine Woodward Thomas as a five step process to completing an intimate relationship--she wrote a book about it. Then, when Gwyneth Paltrow split from Chris Martin in 2014, she made the term even more popular.

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Conscious Family Law & Mediation LLC

3775 Iris Avenue, Suite 4

Boulder, Colorado 80301

1+ (303) 415-2040



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Conscious Family Law & Mediation LLC serves Colorado residents (including same-sex and other alternative families) statewide with mediation, and with representation in Boulder County, Denver County, Broomfield County, Larimer County, Adams County, Weld County, and Jefferson County.