Considering separation? 3 reasons to call a family mediator before you call your lawyer.
When people are in crisis, they do a lot of different things to react to it.
Sometimes people call a close friend.
Some people like to be alone.
Others turn to distractions to deal with their feelings.
So the question is: what should people do when they’re going through a relationship crisis like separation or divorce? Who do they talk to? Who do they call? When do they run away to get away? Should they be alone? What are the resources out there?
One of the things I’ve learned through this work is that getting divorced can be a total nightmare: trying to pull together all of the details that they need to pull together, getting support and help, making decisions, knowing what to do next… it can be overwhelming.
Often, our first response when we’re looking at separation is to call the lawyer. That seems to be the way we’re wired. There’s something about popular culture, like what we see in TV shows or movies, that makes this seem like the first move.
I want to paint a different picture for you.
If you’ve decided you’re going to separate, or even if you’ve just been given the news that separation is coming, I’m suggesting that your first call be to a family mediator.
Here are three reasons why:
- A family mediator will listen and understand what’s going on for you, asking good questions to get good information. Family mediators are trained and skilled to find out what’s important to you, and to dig into that to help you find solutions and ways forward.
- Family mediators understand what the law says and they understand what the process looks like so they’re able to talk to you about what’s ahead so you can get an idea of the “roadmap”.
- Family mediators are more than happy to spend the time to give you the relevant information. What I’ve noticed about people who do this kind of work is that we feel like we’re on a bit of a mission. We want to help.
We want families to do well in this situation, and stay healthy.
We want kids to do well in this.
We want your wealth to be preserved.
We want you to be in control of the outcomes.
And we want this thing to go at your speed.
We want to reduce your stress.
So regardless of what you’ve seen on TV, or maybe what you’ve heard from friends that’ve been involved in that difficult process, I suggest that the best thing to do first, when faced with a family breakup of some sort, is to call a family mediator and get some information about your situation so you have a bit of a roadmap forward.
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