It’s no secret that divorces bring out the worst in people. Perhaps it is the sense of betrayal or the sense of entitlement that people develop, but there appears to be an inherent need to take emotional digs and mark territory as the legal relationship is dissolved.

The emotional turmoil can leave long-lasting impressions and physical ailments, and even jeopardize other relationships stemming from the breakup (i.e. relationships with children, friends and extended family). Nevertheless, there are ways that these emotional issues can be avoided. This why more family courts are requiring parties to take part in mediation.

Mediation is an alternative dispute resolution process where a third-party neutral helps the litigants reach a resolution. The process is not like the traditional adversarial process, where parties are attempting to prove right or wrong, valid or invalid, or legal or illegal. Instead, mutually beneficial goals are sought.

In the context of a divorce, win-win situations are important because ultimately parties want a say in how their post divorce lives will begin, especially when children are involved. As such, a party who believes that they are not being respected (or heard) will fight tenaciously to preserve their rights, which is where some unnecessary litigation may arise. To that end, mediation is a helpful way to make sure both goals are attained.

Mediation can be used to resolve sticky issues in a divorce, such as parenting schedules during holidays and payment of school costs not covered by child support. By coming to the table and discussing these issues, many of the emotional battles can be avoided.

Source: HuffingtonPost.com, Using mediation to keep your cool during divorce and beyond, August 27, 2013