You and your spouse have decided to end your marriage, and you have to admit that this hasn’t been an easy process for either of you. Unfortunately, if you share young children, this difficult decision can be confusing and upsetting for them as well. The question is, how can you minimize the negative impacts of the divorce on their young lives?
One of the best moves you can make to ease the trauma of divorce is to avoid divorce litigation, if possible. The reason for this is that litigation tends to be acrimonious and thus stressful. Rather than going to trial, you and your future ex-spouse may want to consider going through mediation.
Mediation is an out-of-court process that allows you and the other party to discuss various aspects of your divorce and generate an agreement that reflects both of your wishes. Here’s a rundown on how mediation works and how it can make divorce easier on the entire family.
Decrease Conflict with Mediation
During divorce, it is not uncommon for parents to argue and refuse to listen to each other. Their breakdown in communication—one of the top unhappy relationship signs—can not only affect them but also impact their children.
In fact, research shows that when divorcing parents fight, this can cause their children to suffer both short term and long term. That’s because witnessing high levels of conflict in the home can lead to feelings of anxiety, distress, tension, and helplessness.
Fortunately, mediation can actually improve your communication and lower your chances of engaging in destructive conflict.
Here’s how the mediation process works: A mediator will represent both you and the other party in a fair manner during your divorce. This trained individual will work with you both to pinpoint areas where you may experience conflict. For instance, perhaps you and your partner might not agree on who will keep the marital home. Or, you might not see eye to eye on how to deal with matters such as child custody and spousal support. You may also be at odds regarding who will keep certain high-value items, such as your favorite collectible artworks.
Next, the mediator will work to create wins for you both before you embark on the bargaining step. The mediator may even encourage your family to seek the guidance of mental health experts to help you to deal effectively with the loss associated with divorce.
The above process ultimately helps reduce the hostility inherently created by having lawyers fight on opposing sides at trial, which means a less stressful divorce process for everyone.
Keep in mind that mediation isn’t the perfect fit for all families and divorce situations. However, it does have the potential to help you experience a more amicable divorce. Plus, it will give you and your future ex a chance to show your children how to reconcile differences with others in a mature and healthy way.
Expedite the Divorce Process with Mediation
Mediation can also make the divorce process go faster than it would with litigation. That’s because with litigation, you have to involve numerous paralegals, attorneys, judges, and clerks. In addition, weeks are often scheduled between hearings in court, which makes litigation a considerably longer process. Depending on how many divorce issues you have to resolve in court, you might not finalize your divorce for several months, maybe years.
On the contrary, with mediation, you work with a single mediator. That means fewer schedules to deal with and a lot less time waiting for the next step. As a result, you can reach a divorce decision more quickly—in only a handful of sessions.
This benefits the entire family because it’ll give you the opportunity to spend much more time with the kids rather than in a courtroom. In addition, you can all move on from the painful divorce process and enter your new stage of life sooner.
Help Your Family Through Divorce with Confidence Today
Divorce can understandably be a tough process for all parties involved—especially for younger children. After all, this major life event can massively disrupt the family’s home situation, school situation, socioeconomic status, and even support systems all at once.
Fortunately, a reputable mediator can help you and your future ex-spouse to make this complex life event a bit easier on everyone. Consider tapping into the above benefits of mediation as you move forward with your divorce proceeding.