Using Couples Mediation to Resolve Conflicts

Marriage is a long and difficult road at times. Every couple faces trials at some point that will test their relationship. The reason almost 50% of marriages end in divorce is that, at some point, the couple cannot come to an understanding with each other. In fact, in America, there is one divorce approximately every 36 seconds. That’s nearly 2,400 divorces per day, 16,800 divorces per week and 876,000 divorces a year. That is a lot of cases that can often be resolved using couples mediation.

Also known as divorce mediation, couples mediation is when you hire a neutral third party, called a mediator, to meet with you in an effort to discuss and resolve the issues in your marriage. The process sees the mediator serve as a facilitator to help you and your spouse figure out what’s best.

There are quite a few incentives to mediate your divorce rather than settle it in the courts. Mediation is much less expensive than a court trial or a series of hearings and most cases end in a settlement of all of the issues in your divorce. It is strictly confidential and allows you to arrive at a resolution based on your own ideas of what is fair in your situation, not what the courts decide is fair. Deciding the divorce separation and property agreements in couples mediation give both parties an equal amount of player.

The best way to ensure mediating a divorce goes successfully, both sides need to come in with open minds and a willingness to listen to each other. Do not let any bad feelings you might have towards your spouse get in the way of coming to terms on your divorce.

When a couples mediation case is started, it often begins with a conversation with the mediator or an assistant to provide background information about your marriage and any issues lying between the two of you. During this time is also a good time for the mediator to decide if the meetings should be held all in the same room as each other or separately to get your views or positions in private. The goal of the mediator is to make the situation as comfortable for both parties as possible.

Next, both sides need to establish where they agree and where some work needs to be done to get to an agreement on your couples mediation. When you have a sense of what needs to be accomplished, you, your spouse, and the mediator will plan how you’re going to accomplish it.

When it is time to begin negotiations, it might be best to solve the easier disputes before getting into the tougher issues. If you and your spouse can start out the mediation process making progress on issues the two of you can easily compromise on, it will lay the groundwork for more civil conversation towards the more heated topics. During this time, the mediator will help you to stay on track and brainstorm options, express your opinions, positions, and what’s important to you, and will help you listen to each other in ways that will make a resolution more likely.

Once all the negotiations have been finalized and a solution set in place, one of your attorneys will write an agreement, a parenting schedule, or parenting plan. The agreement will be included with your divorce papers and the courts can enforce them if one of you doesn’t go through what was agreed on.

Couples mediation can be a much better way to solve your divorce settlements than with the courts. If both sides can decide to be civil and open-minded to communicating, it will make the process much easier and less stressful on both parties.