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Mediation Blog

Topic: Hope | 19 post(s).

June 24, 2022 -   This video is about hope and the support that my friend Julie received from the group Support Connection, prior to her death from ovarian cancer. Like anyone given this diagnosis, she felt alone and scared and had no idea where to turn for help. But then, she found Support Connection, a lifeline for women who have breast or ovarian cancer. Julie not only found hope but was able to give support and inspiration to others. So much so, that in 2018 she was given th [...]

January 15, 2021 - {2 minutes to read} Like everyone else in the world, I looked forward to 2021 and the opportunity to put 2020 behind me. While we all hoped that the new year would bring something better — in health, in politics, and in regaining in-person connections to friends and family — of course, nothing changed at the stroke of midnight. And then I thought about expectations. The meditation teacher, Joseph Goldstein, speaks about “the next pleasant thing.&rdquo [...]

June 5, 2019 - {3:30 minutes to read} In a previous post, I wrote about the enormous impact that a sincere apology could have on another person. There is, though, a very significant step that must come first. Taking Responsibility for Our Actions Sometimes, the intentions behind the words said or the actions taken are crystal clear, and it is impossible to say with any semblance of credibility — “I didn’t mean to do that.”   More often, though, it&rsquo [...]

December 19, 2018 - {3:30 minutes to read} I had a meeting recently with a couple, and when they left, I felt sure they would not be returning for another meeting. The husband didn’t want to separate, didn’t want to leave their home, and couldn’t imagine not having the children with him at least half of the time. The wife was insistent on separating, be it through mediation or through attorneys, wanted to be the primary custodial parent, and insisted on the sale of the h [...]

May 23, 2018 - {2:42 minutes to read}  As a divorce mediator, I certainly expect to have clients express strong emotions, including anger. But I’ve encountered a few clients recently who made me recall my earlier post on the difference between anger and bitterness. The definitions of anger and bitterness are similar: Anger: a strong feeling of annoyance, displeasure, or hostility. Bitterness: anger and disappointment at being treated unfairly; resentment. The definit [...]

February 27, 2018 - {3:48 minutes to read} In New York, we refer to “joint legal custody” as joint decision making in which neither parent has a superior right to make decisions for the children. It sounds reasonable, and most parents agree to joint decision making without much thought. But then I ask “What do you think will happen if you can’t agree upon a major decision?” A large percentage of my clients believe that they will not have any substantial confl [...]

January 16, 2018 - {3:06 minutes to read} The concept of hope has been on my mind since a good friend recently told me that she will be awarded the Spirit of Hope award from her cancer support group. Throughout the many fears, disappointment, and pain that living with cancer inflicts, she has remained remarkably hopeful these past several years. She is the embodiment of hope to me, and she is truly deserving of this honor. It’s human to feel fear when confronted with the risks and c [...]

December 6, 2016 - {3:18 minutes to read} After my initial mediation training, I developed a sense of why I thought clients would choose to mediate their divorce. Since I was so invigorated by the knowledge of this amazing process, I assumed they would choose to mediate because they wanted to engage in a process in which they could learn how to communicate their interests to each other and then brainstorm creative resolutions to meet those interests in a collaborative and non-adversarial s [...]

August 30, 2016 - {2:36 minutes to read} I am one of those people who enjoys the changing of the seasons, even when it means that summer is over. However, I’m not one of those people who feel that summer is over on the 5th of July. Even if we measure summer as Memorial Day to Labor Day, there are still two full months of summer to enjoy after the 4th of July. Why not savor these two months when it’s still 90 degrees in the shade instead of focusing on winter coming? Converse [...]

August 16, 2016 - {3:30 minutes to read} When I began practicing family law, one of the first lessons I learned was that clients do not consider all assets the same. The one asset that consistently holds a very special place in the heart of a client is a pension. Clients express feeling a different sense of entitlement to their pension because: They performed at a job where their lives, health and safety were placed in jeopardy; They may have taken less in salary for the assurance of [...]

March 29, 2016 - A departure from my other posts, and one that I hope will resonate with you. Most people wanting to adopt a pet will typically look for a puppy or at least one under a year of age. But since we adopted Max, a miniature dachshund who was then between 10 and 12 years old, I consistently try to persuade anyone who is adopting a pet to consider adopting an older, or as they say in the world of pet adoption, a senior pet. Admittedly, I was reluctant to adopt Max. But when w [...]

February 16, 2016 - {2:48 minutes to read} Budgets are not fun – composing them, living on them and even just having to think about them. So, I understand the look in clients’ eyes when I first talk to them about completing their budgets. Here are 4 reasons why I think it’s vital to have accurate and complete budgets for each party in mediation. Budgets are a reality checkNo matter the level of income, a good percentage of my clients are living above their means. Seeing [...]

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