Divorce Mediation

The healthy choice emotionally, financially and spiritually

by Laurence Mitchell

Unfortunately when we think of divorce, we immediately script out a plan which includes hiring an attorney and digging our claws in for a ruthless, bloody confrontation. Mediation isnít even a small, faint beep on our radar screen. Weíve mutated into a society that predominantly wants litigation. We want to hurt our opponent. Our desire to fight totally blinds us to the cost factors involved in divorce and the undo and unnecessary pain we blanket our children with. Divorce is not pretty. The ripple effect from divorce lives forever, touching and haunting every part of our daily lives, from living arrangements, social  life, birthdays, graduations, holidays, school events, and finances. The list goes on. While we cannot design a mask to hide all the warts of divorce, we can make the acceptance of and the participation during and after easier and more dignified. While we have no magic potion to protect our children from all the pains of the reality of their parents parting, we can help our children slowly accept and share two new families.

When we decide to use litigation to divorce, we are signing a blank check for hundreds and usually thousands of dollars. The process usually drags on for months. Itís not uncommon for a divorce process to last 10 to 16 months. Litigation fuels aggression and conflict, and how healthy is that for us? How healthy is it for children to see their parents in war-like fashion with open hostility?

Here are facts that are undisputable regarding Divorce Mediation:

  • Counselors, spiritual leaders and good divorce attorneys always recommend Divorce and Custody Mediation.
  • Divorce Mediation keeps the decision making process in the hands of the divorcing or separating couple. No winners, no losers.
  • Divorce Mediation helps us understand and accept our new role because the choices we make are our own. Conversation away from an antagonizing environment helps us see that we still have expectations to meet because we are parents.
  • Divorce Mediation helps us maintain dignity. We forget that life is not a dress rehearsal. We have to live with our actions and consequences, and so do our children.
  • Divorce or Custody Mediation shows us how to see the problem and that we do have the ability to create solutions for our betterment and the betterment of our children.
  • We can greatly reduce the ugly impact of divorce through mediation.
  • Mediation saves a great deal of money and crystallizes a settlement in a very reasonable period of time.

Recently I was part of an interesting survey about divorce. Our direct mail approach failed so approximately 380 people were called personally by our survey team. Of the 380 people, only 32 people knew about mediation as an option. Of the 32 people, 11 used mediation. The 11 plus 5 were the only ones that claim to have a non-confrontational relationship with their ex-spouse. We have a responsibility to ourselves. We need to latch on to things that are healthy for us. Mediation is the healthy alternative to litigation.

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