Seminar Detail

Healing Children of High Conflict Families: Family-Based Strategies to Improve Emotional & Mental Health

Tuesday, April 11, 2017 at 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM

This event is not currently available for purchase.

For more information: Call (800) 844-8260
Course Description:

High conflict co-parents destroy their children. Torn between both parents and being forced to lie – or take sides – these children become depressed, anxious, stressed and get in trouble. They suffer from grief, fear of abandonment, anger, resentment and are afraid to love one parent while with the other parent. As clinicians, we are seeing more and more of these cases.

Join high-conflict family expert Monica Johns, LPC, NCC, and learn how to firmly, yet positively, push co-parents out of their enmeshed, negative relationship and move into a new, healthier type of structure. You will leave the day with specific tools to guide co-parents past their hostility, anger, revenge, manipulation, resentment, guilt, and grief, which will have a direct, positive and immediate impact on the children.

Attend with an open mind and a willingness to challenge old techniques in working with high-conflict families. Leave with a deeper insight into the psychology of high-conflict families and how they attempt to manipulate you and other professionals. Your new knowledge will open doors for your clients as well as new doors for other professionals seeking your expertise.

Walk away with explicit strategies and tools to:
  • Detect Parental Alienation Behaviors and Hostile Aggressive Parenting
  • Assess the high-conflict family and conduct a thorough home visit
  • Teach non-hostile communication, conflict resolution and relationship-building skills
  • Confront hostility, anger, revenge, manipulation, resentment, guilt and grief
  • Stay out of the “co-parenting quicksand”
  • Teach self-care, resilience and coping strategies
  • Proactively work with attorneys, Guardian Ad Litems and Social Services
  • Illustrate the ethical pros and cons of parental behaviors relating to emotional abuse and neglect

  1. Illustrate the psychology of a high-conflict family and how they attempt to manipulate others.
  2. Identify Hostile Aggressive Parenting and Parental Alienation Behaviors.
  3. Demonstrate techniques to motivate and challenge co-parents in making child-focused decisions.
  4. Construct a safe environment giving children permission to love both parents.
  5. Employ effective strategies to navigate and defuse family grief, anger, revenge and conflict addiction.
  6. State the ethical necessity to reduce high conflict for the emotional and mental health of the children.
  7. Design and inspire a supportive, family friendly team of professionals.

Illustration of a High Conflict Family (HCF)
  • What does a HCF look like?
  • Hostile Aggressive Parenting
  • Parental Alienation Behaviors
  • Alienation vs. estrangement vs. justified resistance
Assessment Tools to Measure:
  • Strength of the perceived alliance between parents
  • Parents’ ability to cooperate and negotiate with each other
  • Willingness vs. ability
  • Parental personality disorder

Family System Approach: A Step by Step Process
  • Conduct a home visit
  • Clean up the boundaries
  • Establish the rules
  • Create safe place
  • Manage family meetings
  • Access needed support systems
  • Eye opening family strategies
Sessions with Child/Children
  • The child’s voice
  • Confront grief, anger, fears and embarrassment
  • Address child manipulation
  • Conquer resistance to parental contact
  • Relationship-building skills
  • Self-care and resiliency strategies
  • Coping strategies
  • Overcome strong alliance and internalized false beliefs
Sessions with Co-Parents
  • Steps to resolve entrenched parental conflict
  • Confront family grief, anger, revenge, conflict addiction
  • Address parental manipulation
  • Overcome strong alliance and internalized false beliefs
  • Navigate co-parent agendas
  • Manage parental personality disorders
  • Self-care and resilience strategies
  • Non-hostile communication skills
  • Conflict resolution skills
  • Healthy co-parenting skills
Alternative Dispute Resolution Options
  • Parent Coordinator
  • Parenting plans
  • Collaborate with outside systems, such as attorneys, schools, Social Services, Guardian Ad Litems
Ethical Obligations
  • Confidentiality
  • Emotional abuse and neglect
  • Reporting/involving Child Protective Services (CPS)
  • Ethical violations
  • Dual relationships and impartiality


Monica Johns, LPC, NCC, is a high-conflict family expert who has been working with children and families for over 23 years. In her private practice, she works primarily with high conflict families, pre and post separation and divorce, where the co-parenting relationship is destructive and the children are suffering. Her practice includes child, individual, marital, and family therapy with a specialty on high conflict, reunification interventions, parental alienation, and other parent-child contact problems.

Monica’s career began in working with foster care, adoption, and being trained as a forensic interviewer for child abuse, neglect, and sexual assault. She continued her career providing intensive in-home services, drug and alcohol counseling, and mental health crisis counseling for at-risk children and their families. Monica is EAGALA trained and certified to provide equine therapy. She developed an equine therapy program for high conflict families to work with the entire family system to address co-parenting, communication, grief and the newly restructured family. Additionally, she designed a program. For the Children, for co-parents who are overly reliant on the court system to solve their parenting issues.

Monica is an active member of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC) an international organization designed specifically for judges, attorneys, and mental health professionals dedicated to improving the lives of children and families experiencing family conflict. She is a Virginia State Qualified Clinical Supervisor, has been trained with the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals, and has been trained by the Supreme Court of Virginia to provide a court ordered co-parenting class.

Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: Monica Johns has an employment relationship with Life Enrichment Services, LLC. She receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.

Nonfinancial: Monica Johns has no relevant nonfinancial relationship to disclose.
Credits listed below are for full attendance at the live event only. After attendance has been verified, pre-registered attendees will receive an email from PESI Customer Service with the subject line, “Evaluation and Certificate” within one week. This email will contain a link to complete the seminar evaluation and allow attendees to print, email or download a certificate of completion if in full attendance. For those in partial attendance (arrived late or left early), a letter of attendance is available through that link and an adjusted certificate of completion reflecting partial credit will be issued within 30 days (if your board allows). Please see “live seminar schedule” for full attendance start and end times. NOTE: Boards do not allow credit for breaks or lunch.

If your profession is not listed, please contact your licensing board to determine your continuing education requirements and check for reciprocal approval. For other credit inquiries not specified below, or questions on home study credit availability, please contact or 800-844-8260 before the event.

Materials that are included in this course may include interventions and modalities that are beyond the authorized practice of mental health professionals. As a licensed professional, you are responsible for reviewing the scope of practice, including activities that are defined in law as beyond the boundaries of practice in accordance with and in compliance with your professions standards.

The planning committee and staff who controlled the content of this activity have no relevant financial relationships to disclose. For speaker disclosures, please see speaker bios.

PESI, Inc. offers continuing education programs and products under the brand names PESI, PESI Healthcare, PESI Rehab and Psychotherapy Networker.

This seminar includes 1.0 hours of general ethics instruction. If ethics is not specified within your licensing board’s approval statement below, please contact your board to determine the applicability and amount of ethics allowed.

Addiction Counselors
This course has been approved by PESI, Inc., as a NAADAC Approved Education Provider, for 6.0 CE in the Legal, Ethical and Professional Development skill group. NAADAC Provider #77553. PESI, Inc. is responsible for all aspects of their programming. Full attendance is required; no partial credit will be awarded for partial attendance.

This activity is designed to qualify for 6.25 continuing education hours.

This intermediate activity consists of 6.25 clock hours of continuing education instruction. Credit requirements and approvals vary per state board regulations. Please save the course outline, the certificate of completion you receive from the activity and contact your state board or organization to determine specific filing requirements.

Massachusetts Counselors: CE credit is available. This program has been approved for 6.25 Category I MaMHCA/MMCEP hours for re-licensure, in accordance with 262 CMR. Expires: 04/10/18. Full attendance is required; no partial credits will be offered for partial attendance.

Rhode Island Counselors: CE credit is available. This activity has been approved by the Rhode Island Mental Health Counselor's Association. Full attendance at this activity qualifies for 6.25 CEUs.

This course is designed to qualify toward your professional development requirement. The program is 6.25 clock hours in length.

Massachusetts School Personnel: This course may be applicable for 6.25 Professional Development Points toward your Professional Development Plan per the Massachusetts Department of Education recertification guidelines; check with your licensing authority for more information.

Marriage & Family Therapists
This activity consists of 380 minutes of continuing education instruction. Credit requirements and approvals vary per state board regulations. You should save this course outline, the certificate of completion you receive from the activity and contact your state board or organization to determine specific filing requirements.

Social Workers
PESI, Inc., #1062, is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved as ACE providers. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. PESI, Inc. maintains responsibility for this course. ACE provider approval period: January 27, 2017 - January 27, 2020. Social Workers completing this course receive 5.25 Clinical Practice and 1.0 Ethics continuing education credits. No more than 6.25 total CE hours may be awarded for this activity. Course Level: Intermediate. Full attendance is required; no partial credits will be offered for partial attendance. A certificate of attendance will be awarded at the end of the program to social workers who complete the program evaluation.

Other Professions
This activity qualifies for 380 minutes of instructional content as required by many national, state and local licensing boards and professional organizations. Save your course outline and certificate of completion, and contact your own board or organization for specific requirements.

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