EP: 001



As humans, we are wired to connect. So, if you are beginning to question your partner’s support, you are likely to feel a ‘primal panic’ that sets up a fight-or-flight response. Taking steps to repair the relationship early on can heal that disconnect, but many couples wait too long and find themselves trapped in a heightened conflict dynamic. How do you know when the bonds are too fractured to be fixed? What should you consider in making the difficult decision to divorce?

Ann Jackler is a psychotherapist specializing in individual and couples treatment. Her expertise is focused on issues related to premarital, marital, separation and divorce therapy, and she has led several separation and divorce psychotherapy support groups through the years. Ann has a master’s degree in social work and post-master’s training from the Ackerman Institute as well as the Family Institute of Westchester. She serves as an adjunct lecturer at the NYU School of Social Work and the Fordham School of Social Service. Ann has 30-plus years of experience in private practice, and her office is located in Scarsdale, New York.

Today, Ann sits down with Katherine to discuss the factors couples should consider in making the decision to divorce. She offers insight on the foundational issues that lead to disconnect in a relationship and explains why she invites couples to slow down before choosing divorce. Ann walks us through the components of a successful marriage and describes how a therapist can help you repair the fractured bonds or navigate the loss if you do make the decision to divorce. Listen in to understand the significance of exploring your relationship story and learn how the collaborative divorce option incorporates mental health professionals who provide support during this vulnerable time.


What leads couples to make the decision to divorce

How a breakdown in communication leads to conflict

Ann’s insight on the disconnect between couples

  1. Are you there for me?
  2. Do my feelings matter to you?
  3. Do you make me feel safe?

Why Ann invites couples to slow down before choosing divorce

How our ‘primal panic’ sets up a fight-or-flight response

The protective measures of blame, contempt, defensiveness and withdrawal

The components of a successful marriage

  • Ability to negotiate differences
  • Foundation of friendship, humor

The significance of seeking counseling as soon as the bonds begin to fracture

How the decision to divorce heightens a couple’s conflict dynamic

Examining your own participation in the breakdown of a relationship

How mental health professionals can support you in the divorce process

  • Work through renegotiation of roles, new family structure
  • Help grieve separation and loss


Call (914) 725-7985


The Center for Understanding Conflict

Miller Law Group

Katherine on LinkedIn

The New Yorker’s Guide to Collaborative Divorce by Katherine Miller

Email katherine@westchesterfamilylaw.com

Call (914) 738-7765