The short answer – NO.
I hear this all of the time, “we aren’t on the same page so mediation won’t work” or”my lawyer told me I shouldn’t mediate because we are so far apart”. I guess we as mediators haven’t done a good job of educating the public and the industry about what mediation can do.
If you look into mediation you will find it is also referred to as dispute resolution. If you were on the same page you probably wouldn’t need a dispute resolution process, would you?
Here’s the thing about mediation, it’s here to help guide you through your separation, ensure you make informed decisions, help resolve conflicts and perhaps even provide the added value of a different perspective. It let’s you make the decisions vs giving up that right to someone else.
YES, you have to be on the same page about participating in mediation and it’s fine if that’s the only thing you are in agreement to.
If you are not on the same page as to how to share parenting of your children, that’s ok.
If you are not on the same page as to how to divide your assets, or sadly your debt, that’s ok.
If you have no idea whether to keep the house or sell it, that’s ok.
If you don’t know where to start or what to do, that’s ok.
Mediators are experts in helping you have these difficult conversations. And yes, they are often difficult.
As mediators we have a wealth of knowledge about the separation process and what needs to be done. We have seen many creative solutions and may just be able to help you get past some sticking points.
We make sure that you are making informed decisions and understand those decisions. If we can’t help, we probably know who can – lawyers, therapists, accountants and financial specialists to name few.
Mediation is here to help you get on the same page. We can even help you find the book if you don’t have one!