When a couple hires a real estate broker, their goal is the same: they both want to buy or sell their house. When a couple hires a babysitter, their goal is the same: they both want to ensure the safety and well-being of their child. Likewise, when a couple goes to the courthouse to obtain a marriage license, their goal is the same: they want to get married. However, when the subject is divorce, both spouses are not always on the same page. What happens in that situation? How does the couple proceed? Is mediation still possible?
One of the biggest challenges I face as a Mediator is not during the actual mediation sessions. That may sound odd since divorce mediation often involves disagreements about important subjects such as alimony, child-support, time-sharing, asset division, etc. The truth is that my role as Mediator begins when I am first contacted by either the husband or the wife. It is during that conversation that I first learn where both parties stand in the divorce process and, ultimately, in the desire to use mediation to resolve their issues.
Sometimes a spouse may call and tell me: “We both want a divorce and we both want to Peacefully Split and mediate our divorce so that we can save time and money.” Other times I am told: “We both want a divorce, but I want to Peacefully Split and mediate our divorce, but my spouse is unsure. How do I get him/her to agree?”
Unlike buying/selling a house, or hiring a baby-sitter, or deciding to get married, a decision about divorce is an emotionally overwhelming and life-changing decision that not only affect the husband and wife, but their children and larger family systems as well. It is a decision that couples invariably do not celebrate or view as a great and happy event.
That is why it is important to recognize the normalcy of both spouses not being on the same page about divorce and mediation. It is also important to recognize that it is okay and acceptable for that situation to exist. When I mediate with couples, often times the biggest cause of their divorce is poor and ineffective communication. Therefore, it is logical that couples deciding upon a divorce and if mediation is the best choice for them is affected by their poor communication skills with one another.
My role is not just to mediate the divorce settlement, but to mediate the party’s decision-making process about the initial decision whether or not mediation is the best option for the couple. I am able to call upon my 22 years of experience as an attorney having represented hundreds of clients over the years to respectfully and in a non-pressuring manner speak with both spouses and explain the mediation process and how, I believe, it is in their best interests to try mediation before heading-off to court.
Mediation is not for every couple seeking divorce. If you want to hurt your spouse, mediation is not for you. If you want to use mediation to cause parental alienation, then mediation is not for you. If you want to seek revenge, mediation is not for you. However, if you and your spouse want to quickly, economically and in good-faith try mediation with the goal of reaching a settlement of your divorce issues (and issues related to raising your child after divorce), then mediation via a Peaceful Split may be right for you
If you and your spouse are ready for a Peaceful Split, or if your or spouse is unsure about the process, I can be of assistance. I am more than happy to have separate conversation with each of you, or, as is my preference, a conference-call during which I can explain to the both of you the benefits of a Peaceful Split mediation. Sometimes both parties are on the same page, and often they are not. I am available to help you under either scenario.
If you are ready to divorce, want to avoid a financially and emotionally draining legal battle, and desire an economical “Peaceful Split,” or just want more information about the divorce mediation process, then Attorney and Florida Supreme Court Certified Family Mediator, Eric B. Epstein, Esq., and Florida Supreme Court Certified Family Mediator, Erica H. Epstein, are ready to assist you. We can be reached at 954-272-8292.