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Here we’ve listed some of the most impactful books that we’ve read and commonly recommend to our clients.

Getting to Yes – Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In

Roger Fisher and William Ury, with Bruce Patton

Family Law disputes begin with a relationship between two people. And while that relationship is coming to end, it also needs to remain amicable enough for the two of you to make the decisions required. Going to war with your partner over the division of assets or parenting arrangements can do irreparable damage to a relationship that has already been fractured – and will often fail to achieve an outcome. Getting to Yes illustrates how to negotiate amicably without giving in – so that you can achieve an outcome that is fair to you and that will work moving forward, whilst not destroying the relationship. This book moves negotiations beyond hard and soft positional bargaining; beyond egos – and espouses the virtues of principled negotiation directed at resolving issues on their merits. Worthwhile reading for both you and your ex before embarking on your Family Law journey.

The Verbally Abusive Relationship: How to Recognize It and How to Respond

Patricia Evans

Verbally abusive partners can be men or women, and they can be hard to spot, not least of all by the one on the receiving end. Because, when you’ve been told over and over, in both overt and covert ways, that your perception of reality is wrong; that your feelings are wrong – you doubt your own experience. That’s why this text is fantastic – it’s the original guide on what this type of abuse – this type of control – looks like, and how it operates. It gives the reader the tools to recognise what is happening right in front of them.

Charmed and Dangerous: A Woman’s Guide to Reclaiming a Healthy Relationship

Tweed Shire Women’s Services

Abusive, controlling or violent relationships are all too common, and statistically, women and children are the most likely victims of domestic and family violence. Legal Aid NSW has provided this booklet as a guide for women, so they can reclaim their safety and move towards a better life for themselves and their children. The goal is to help women recognise the signs of an abusive relationship and help them reclaim their independence and the decision-making powers they hold. The text also covers the importance of staying safe after leaving a partner, an essential step in breaking the cycle of abuse. Every woman has the legal and human right to live in a safe and peaceful home with her children, and this booklet outlines, in a practical and careful way, how women can continue on that journey.

The Book of Forgiving: The Fourfold path for Healing Ourselves and our World

Desmond & Mpho Tutu

When people first look to find a lawyer, they are often stuck in an oppositional and tense relationship with someone – and trapped in a past they cannot reconcile or manage. The challenge when engaging in a legal process can be to not let anger or revenge lead you to a place that is worse than where you started. This book by Nobel Peace Prize recipient Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter, Rev Mpho Tutu, is a roadmap to acceptance of a past that cannot be changed. It is an informational, inspirational, and therapeutic resource for anyone wanting to exit a legal dispute and actually leave it behind them.

Why Does He Do That? Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men

Lundy Bancroft

We have been recommending this book to clients for years and have received excellent feedback. Put simply, it’s our go-to recommendation when post-separation women present with low self-esteem and confusion about the nature of their relationship. Using clear and unpretentious language, with real-life and relatable examples that mirror the experiences of many of our clients, this book gives women the tools they need to recognise and articulate the way they have been treated. In this way, it empowers them to know they are not alone; to see that they are not crazy, and to identify conduct in the future and know how to respond.

Adult Children of Parental Alienation Syndrome – Breaking the Ties that Bind

Amy J. L. Baker

It doesn’t happen often, but when it does, it’s heartbreaking. Amy Baker has authored this book based on her interviews with adults who, in their childhood, were successfully manipulated by one parent/caregiver to turn against their other parent. Children who fall victim to Parental Alienation Syndrome report unjustified loathing of their targeted parent and can refuse to have any contact with them at all. For targeted parents, there’s a real sense of helplessness. Dr Baker has asked her interviewees what their targeted parent could have done better to minimise or counteract the effects of the manipulation. In so doing, she has created a resource for parents who fear their child’s other parent is an alienator.