Even in the best of circumstances, divorce is an emotional and difficult process. For many people, it can be a lonely process, as well as a source of pain and anger. All of those emotions can lead to poor decision making and unnecessary fighting. If you and your former spouse agree on most of the big issues in your divorce, you may want to consider divorce mediation instead of a protracted court battle. Mediation is a facilitated process where you and your former spouse, along with your personal attorneys, sit down with a neutral third party to examine various issues regarding your divorce.
With the help of your attorneys to ensure everything is fair, you and your former spouse will discuss what you want from the child custody and asset division processes. Then you can examine each point of disagreement and find mutually beneficial compromises. Sometimes it takes hours to discuss one issue you both feel strongly about. Other times, the whole process can be incredibly quick. As long as you and your former spouse are eventually able to reach an agreement, however, mediation can be beneficial for all members of your family.
Mediation is an empowering process
Going through divorce court can be disheartening. You may have to listen to your former spouse testify about his or her opinion of you. You’ll miss work. Most importantly, you will have very little control over the outcome of the proceedings. The courts will have the ultimate say as to custody and asset division. No matter how confident you feel, you can never really predict the outcome of a court-based divorce. Mediation, on the other hand, allows you and your former spouse to set the terms of your divorce on your own, which gives you complete, if shared, control over the final divorce terms.
In addition to having more control over what happens in your divorce, mediation can help you and your former spouse rebuild a friendship or at least a neutral social relationship. The ability to calmly interact with one another is critical if you share children. Mediation offers a host of benefits for your children. Not only does it set a positive example for your children about compromise and working together, it protects them from the potential emotional damage that witnessing angry fights can cause. Divorce court can be traumatizing for children. Mediation doesn’t need to involve the children directly at all.
A good mediator and your own attorney are both important
In order for mediation to be successful, you need a mediator who can control the flow of conversation and maintain focus. You also need your own attorney to ensure your rights and your future are being protected. With an attorney you trust and a mediator who can help you and your former spouse discuss your disagreements, mediation can be an easier and less frustrating process than contentious divorce.