Divorce is never easy, that goes without saying, but there are ways to make it a little less painful for everyone involved. One of these is undertaking the mediation process. Mediation can be a great way to ease both partners through the difficult journey that signals the end of a once loving marriage.
Of course, the divorce process is not always a smooth one. Unfortunately, many times divorce can be acrimonious, with bad feelings on both sides, and that can lead to fighting and harsh behavior which affects more than just the couple themselves. Everyone around them, including friends and loved ones, can find themselves dealing with fall out and it is particularly difficult on the children of divorcing couples.
That’s why it is always recommended that you consider every option and do whatever you can to keep your divorce from becoming difficult and ugly. The actual conditions surrounding a divorce can do a lot to dictate the path that the proceedings take, but whether you opt for a traditional divorce with specific reasons stated or go the “no fault” route, you’ll need to work out your differences somehow and the mediation process can be the answer.
No matter what the specific causes, all divorces have one thing in common: a breakdown of communication. Sometimes those communication issues are on the surface level, with simple things like failing to take the other person’s needs into consideration, and other times they go far deeper, like serious trust issues stemming from an incident of adultery. The more serious the issues, the more difficult the divorce process is bound to be, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still work through them.
Mediation is designed to help bring the two parties together and allow them to work through their issues and hopefully re-establish the lines of communication. The mediation process can take various forms, from facilitative to evaluative to transformative, but the end goal is always to get both parties talking to each other and listening to each other and, ultimately, coming to some form of mutual agreement.
When handled properly, mediation can make the entire divorce process easier. Instead of just screaming and yelling at each other or not communicating at all, it is far more productive and healthy when both parties feel like their side is being stated and heard. A trained mediator can help to facilitate this and make suggestions for ways that issues can be resolved in a positive manner.
In some instances, the mediator can give legal advice, letting each side know how their case would likely be handled in court. In other cases it is just a matter of asking the right questions and getting the issues out on the table so that they can be addressed. In every form of the mediation process, however, the ultimate responsibility for making decisions and ironing out an agreement remains with the couple. This can be empowering and healing for both sides.
The important thing to remember is that divorce does not have to be a battle; it can be a conversation between two rational adults. In fact, this is the most productive way to go about it and if you can manage it, you should be able to make the whole process a lot less difficult and pain free.
The author of this blog is not an attorney and the information contained in these blogs should not be considered legal advice. The information provided here is based on the experience of the author and some of her clients whose actual names are not mentioned. Do not hesitate to seek the advice of an attorney if you have any legal questions.