To help you better understand how divorce mediation & the collaborative divorce processes work, here are some case studies:
The Mother of a preteen and teenager wanted to divorce and the Husband was devastated. The children were aware that their father did not want divorce and were angry at mother. Wife was angry that Father put children in the middle. The Wife felt guilty about her decision to divorce but her unhappiness in the marriage left her no choice. She wanted a process that would support her to make good decisions and to not cave into the guilt she felt for seeking the divorce. Wife did not want the tension to escalate and wanted to find a way to honor everyone’s needs, including her own. She was concerned about how she would support herself as her income was significantly lower than her Husband’s. She also could not imagine spending days without seeing her Children as raising them has become a big part of her identity.
The Husband intended to move out of the marital home but not until he had a Parenting Plan in place. He wanted to make sure that he had enough time with them so he didn’t feel like he was losing them. With the support of the Collaborative Divorce Process, the Parents came to understand how their conflict impacted the children and began to separate out their needs from the children’s needs. The Collaborative Team helped the couple define what was important to each of them and to talk through a financial and parenting plan that felt fair to them both. The entire process took six months.
Husband and Wife, childhood sweethearts, have two children, ages 6 and 8. Neither parent has ever worked and the family lived off of the Husband’s independent wealth. When the stock market crashed, the family’s assets no longer could sustain their lifestyle and their savings dwindled to almost zero by the time they came to mediation.
The wife needed support and wanted to keep the House, their only asset of value.
The Husband did not have a steady job yet he agreed to all.
After reality testing his agreement, it became clear that he agreed to whatever his wife said in order to avoid her wrath. After encouragement from me, the Mediator, he set forth what he thought was necessary – that they had to sell the House.
The Wife felt the Husband wanted to sell the House as a way of punishing her. The Mediator did not hear that. The Husband, with the support of the Mediator, said what he really was thinking for the first time. The Wife was blown away and wished he had spoken like that during their marriage. She had never seen how hard the financial situation and her wrath had hit her Husband. The couple came to understand and felt a need to change how they interacted with each other. The mediation took a turn and each tried to listen to the other and see the other’s perspective, even if they did not agree with it. This shift in their communication gave them a new peace and integrity which carried them to an Agreement they both could live with.
To speak with Andrea Hirshman about the divorce mediation or collaborative divorce processes, call 917-969-6416 or click here.