Traditionally, divorce has been viewed as a battle. To “win” at divorce, both spouses thought they had to fight it out until the winner takes all. However, the reality is that there are no winners in an adversarial divorce. Thus, more collaborative approaches have become popular.
Mediation is one of these approaches. It involves spouses gathering round the negotiating table and finding equitable solutions. Rather than the courtroom, mediation takes place in a less formal environment with communication and compromise taking priority.
But meditation only works if both spouses approach it with the appropriate mindset. Here are a few things to consider:
It’s not about winning
For mediation to work, it’s vital that both spouses let go of the need to win. In any divorce, nobody is going to walk away with absolutely everything they want. Spouses must be willing to compromise in key areas. One thing that can help with this, for divorcing parents, is putting the needs of the children at the forefront.
It’s not about the past
Divorce mediation is not a place for couples to reconcile. Spouses should be sure that divorce is what they want before entering the process. Dragging up disputes about the past will seriously hinder negotiations. Mediation is all about the future of both parties, which is something they can look forward to rather than dread.
If you and your spouse are amicable, but focussed on settling the divorce and getting on with the future, mediation could be for you. Throughout the process you are still entitled to legal representation. Seek further guidance to assess your divorce options in more detail.