Getting divorced does not necessarily mean that you have to go to court. One popular alternative is to work with a mediator, instead. You still need to get the agreement that you eventually settle on cleared by the court, but you don’t need the judge to tell you what that agreement will be.
For instance, you and your ex could decide that you’ll both share custody of the children in a 50/50 split and you will trade back and forth every other week. The court would likely approve that, as they want both parents to stay involved.
Wondering why people choose mediation over a traditional divorce? That example helps to illustrate the reason, but the main issue is just that couples want to control their own lives. They want to focus on their future and make good choices for their family. They do not want to leave that future up to a judge.
After all, the court order is binding. If you want to split custody 50/50 but the judge said you could only have the kids 25% of the time, you’re stuck. You have to follow the order. The judge tries to understand your case and make a fair ruling, but he or she simply cannot know your case as well as you do. With mediation, the control stays with you and your spouse.
Why doesn’t everyone do it this way? Well, you and your spouse have to cooperate and work as a team. Not everyone is in that position as they get divorced.
Mediation is just one option. Be sure you look into all of yours carefully.