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Mediation helps children weather a divorce

Divorce mediation is an excellent choice for many reasons, not the least of which is the positive effects it can have on children who are stuck in the middle of a divorce. It is no secret that children whose parents divorce are often stuck in the middle of tensions that they are forced to carry while their parents work out how to move on with their respective lives while still finding a way to be a part of the children's lives. This can lead to many children of divorcing parents internalizing a sense of responsibility for the divorce, which is not something that any parent wants.

In truth, a divorce mediator is not a psychiatrist qualified to provide mental care for your child. However, mediating a divorce instead of litigating it can have some very positive effects on how the whole process is perceived by the children caught in the middle of the split. A mediator's job is to be a neutral party whose primary goal is to give both parties in a divorce the tools and opportunities to be their best selves. By removing the adversarial nature of litigating the dissolution of the marriage, both parents can demonstrate a willingness to work together for the best outcome for everyone.

A mediator does not have the legal power to make decisions about a divorce agreement; he or she is only there to give the divorcing parties the tools they need to agree on terms of a divorce without having terms dictated by a court. Working together to decide on the terms of a divorce agreement and a custody arrangement usually entails a more cooperative approach to parenting in the long run, which reassures children that both parents will continue to be an important part of their upbringing.

Children are, of course, not the only ones who benefit from divorce mediation. Mediation is an excellent tool for reaching fair agreements about all aspects of a divorce, and allows each spouse to retain his or her dignity in the process. If you believe that divorce mediation may be for you, consider reaching out to a qualified divorce mediator. This can be the first step in keeping your divorce civil and dignified as you venture into a new season of life.

Source: American Bar, "Benefits of Mediation in Divorce Cases," Holly Clemente, accessed Oct. 25, 2016

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