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Mediation Blog

Topic: Parenting | 39 post(s).

September 24, 2021 - You're going through a separation and your communication with your co-parent is awful. You fight about everything. You're wondering: ''How are we ever going to be able to agree upon major decisions about our children, and what are we going to do if we can't make any decisions?'' Your answer to that might be: ''Well, maybe I should just say I'll be the sole decision-maker and I'll ask for sole custody.'' While that sounds rational to you, it's not going to have the same [...]

August 12, 2021 -   There are many special occasions to share in your life and the lives of your children. When divorcing, however, those occasions can become mini-battlegrounds, causing discomfort to visitors and your children. If you have children, you will be co-parenting for life. In mediation, we can build in ways to handle conflicts as the lives of you and your children move forward. [...]

March 24, 2021 - My previous two videos on Child Inclusive Mediation discussed the child interview and the parent meeting. In this video, we look at the parenting plan that can be created as a result of the issues and concerns raised by the child consultant’s interview of the children. This plan is not a legal document, but an agreement between the parents in their own language which they can start to use immediately.   [...]

February 19, 2021 -   In this video, we discuss the step when the child consultant comes into the mediation and speaks to the parents about their interview with the child. Parents don't have to be afraid that they are going to be judged in the meeting, or that anybody is going to be accusing them of being bad parents because they are having a conflict with their co-parent. The mediator and the child consultant will work together to make sure that the parents feel comfortable in the [...]

February 2, 2021 -   You probably haven't heard about Child Inclusive Mediation because it's not that prevalent in the United States. In Australia, where the process was developed, it is used in both mediations and high-conflict litigated cases and has proven to be very successful.  [...]

October 14, 2020 - {4 minutes to read} When I’m working with parents and we are discussing what each proposes for a parenting plan, I ask them to phrase their proposal in terms of what is in the child’s best interests, and not necessarily what’s best for them. What does “best interests of the child” actually mean though? If we use the standard of what a judge would consider when making a custody determination in an adversarial proceeding, these are some of th [...]

August 26, 2020 -   When divorcing, some couples become somewhat obsessed about splitting everything evenly. When it comes to the kids, a 50/50 parenting plan without some flexibility can potentially do more harm than good. Focusing on how much time your kids are spending with the other parent can be self-defeating when it comes to your relationship with the children.  [...]

August 12, 2020 - {3 minutes to read} Now that you have decided on the access schedule you will use in your equal parenting plan, there are some other terms that you might want to include in your agreement. Tweaks to the On-Duty Parent Responsibilities Typically, the on-duty parent is responsible for everything having to do with the children during their access time. But, you may want to modify that in some circumstances:  If you have children with different extracurricular acti [...]

July 30, 2020 - {3 minutes to read} Reaching the agreement that you both want to share substantially equal time with your children is clearly a very meaningful decision, but it isn’t the only decision you will need to agree upon in terms of your parenting plan. There are many options in terms of parenting schedules that you will need to consider, and that can be a source of conflict. There is no “right” schedule, as it all depends on your children, their developmental [...]

June 30, 2020 -   Though the end of year holidays may be long over when this video is published, those holidays prompted my discussion of this topic for divorced couples. Sharing the kids during all of the holidays throughout the year is often a difficult subject to tackle, but there are some practical ways to work out the logistics so that your kids will have good memories of spending holiday time with their parents.  [...]

May 20, 2020 - {3 minutes to read} As a divorce mediator, it’s not surprising that I work with many couples who experience a lack of communication. Since that lack of communication is now being coupled with spending an inordinate amount of time with your spouse during the pandemic, you may consider this an opportunity to improve your communication. In Listening During a Pandemic, Kate Murphy writes that while a pandemic has the likelihood of causing an increase in divorce, it ca [...]

April 21, 2020 - {4 minutes to read} As I’m writing this on March 30, 2020, the Courts in New York State are open only for emergency relief, such as family offenses/orders of protection and child protective matters. Parents who are having non-emergency custody disputes are unable to access courts at this time to resolve their dispute. In an article in the New York Law Journal, Judge Jeffrey Sunshine, the Statewide Coordinating Judge for Matrimonial Cases, was praised on two divers [...]

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