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Mediation Before Separation

  • DrDaddy
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23 May 12 #332537 by DrDaddy
Topic started by DrDaddy
So, I am going through a slow and protracted relationship breakdown. The causes are my partner''s controlling, and what I consider to be, constant abusive behaviour over many years.

I want to end the relationship now, and I will therefore have to leave our home - however, I want to discuss care arrangements for our son before I actually move out (we share care, but I infact look after him much more than her).

I know that she won''t want to discuss this, as she is extremely uncommunicative, and has consistently refused to discuss any aspect if our relationship, or attend counselling, etc. She basically will just want me to go away.

I feel that if I try to initiate mediation before actually leaving, then I might be able to get her to talk, and discuss future care arrangements. Maybe the involvement of a third party might help. What does anyone think about this - will a mediator be prepared to get involved at this point?

  • LittleMrMike
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24 May 12 #332554 by LittleMrMike
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I don''t normally advise on child custody issues and therefore should probably keep my big trap shut.

But in general terms, mediation will work only if both parties want it to work. If she will not even consider mediation, you may be throwing good money after bad.

LMM

  • Fiona
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24 May 12 #332587 by Fiona
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Good contact for children relies on parents working together and going the court route tends to make that difficult or impossible. So mediation is always worth a shot and there is no reason why you can''t try mediation at this stage. Someone who resists mediation suggested by a spouse/partner may change their mind if they are invited by a mediator and attend a preliminary meeting on their own to find out what is involved.

Initially separated parents can be angry but the anger is a secondary emotion to fear and uncertainties. In my practical experience a good mediator can help address the fear and uncertainties so that the anger dissipates over a few sessions and constructive progress can often then be made.

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24 May 12 #332616 by DrDaddy
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Fiona wrote:

Good contact for children relies on parents working together and going the court route tends to make that difficult or impossible. So mediation is always worth a shot and there is no reason why you can''t try mediation at this stage. Someone who resists mediation suggested by a spouse/partner may change their mind if they are invited by a mediator and attend a preliminary meeting on their own to find out what is involved.

Initially separated parents can be angry but the anger is a secondary emotion to fear and uncertainties. In my practical experience a good mediator can help address the fear and uncertainties so that the anger dissipates over a few sessions and constructive progress can often then be made.


Thanks both for your thoughts.
I do of course realise that you can''t force someone to talk - communication has been a massive problem in our relationship for a long time.
However, I am thinking along the same lines as Fiona: I will have to try to initiate mediation at some point, anyway. I guess that I am hoping that involving a third party might help. On the other hand it might not, but it can''t make things any worse....

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24 May 12 #332663 by Fiona
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