Divorce mediation may sound familiar to some and like a foreign concept to others, but the fact of the matter is that it is something many couples decide to do to make their divorce as easy as possible. Of course, divorce is never easy; even when the decision is mutual and the relationship is one that is not working for either party. The loss of marriage, the breaking of vows and the knowledge that the future is forever changed is always difficult to handle. Fortunately, divorce does not have to be the awful, hurtful experience that so many books, movies and television programs portray. With divorce mediation, couples can make the transition from marriage to divorce as painless as possible.
There are a number of benefits associated with divorce mediation; however, the biggest benefit is quite possibly the fact that it helps divorcing parents to create a parenting plan of action that is acceptable to everyone. This is beneficial particularly to the children involved in the divorce, though it is beneficial to the couple as well. Statistics indicate that children of divorcing parents do poorly in school, suffer depression and often have to grow up too fast. Additionally, the roles of parent and child are often reversed in difficult divorces. Mediators explain this to parents in mediation and help them to focus on the needs of their children, which are so often forgotten during divorce or worst yet, maybe used as leverage.
Mediation for divorcing couples also helps to make the aftermath of the divorce much easier. Parents can come up with a decision regarding the care of their children that is acceptable to both parties. Mediation will help parents to decide how to co-parent despite being a divorced couple, and how to continue raising children in an appropriate manner. Parents who go through mediation are also less likely to say negative things about the other parent to their children. Additionally, parents who undergo divorce mediation are more likely to make decisions together regarding parenting concerns, rather than override the other parent.
Another benefit of divorce mediation is cost. The average divorce can take months, hours of court time and exorbitant legal fees, and it can cost thousands of dollars. The average divorce mediation lasts approximately 8 sessions, two hours each. The cost of a mediator is approximately $2,000. The mediator does not tell the couple what to do; he or she merely guides them in the direction of mutual decisions and assists negotiation by empowering both sides.
Mediation may not be for everyone going through a divorce. Those who are ending an abusive marriage should first think of their safety and then the proper divorce procedures. Furthermore, those who do decide to have their divorce mediated will end up on better terms and they will teach their children the valuable lesson that conflict resolution should be handled with dignity, fairness and equality. Handling your divorce with mediation can make the difference between a bitter, angry divorce and an amicable, agreeable one. Just because the marriage is ending does not mean that both parties should suffer.