For the Children

Emotions. We are all human, we all have them.

But the problem is that so often in relationships, past unresolved mistakes and injuries inflicted by words or conduct can lead to a sad, repetitive cycle of acrimony and resentment.

In time without a pathway leading to an end to the conflict, greater harm naturally follows leading  in many cases to overwhelming unhappiness. In those instances where such conflict causes one or both of the parties to feel that the relationship is irreparable, the couple inevitably ends up in drawn out, contentious Court proceedings.

The depletion of Court staff and resources over the past several years, combined with the ever growing volume of new cases filed in our Courts, has led to a judicial system that has become designed to implement Court efficiency, rather than the important personal needs of the individuals who come before our Courts. 

This reality has led to the inescapable recognition that Mediation offers a better way to deal with Family conflicts.

Mediation allows the cooperative exchange of information necessary for both parties to make well informed decisions in a non-confrontational setting. The process, when conducted properly, facilitates dialogue between the parties in a guided effort to assist them in determining both their individual and mutual interests, and to consider all reasonable options to reach a better outcome. 

Mediation offers the parties an opportunity to take a time out from the argument and to focus on the future.

As highlighted within my last post, these ideals embrace the fundamental principle underlying the Mediation process referred to by the term ,"Self Determination". Simply the recognition by Mediation professionals that the parties themselves should have the freedom to work cooperatively together to find an acceptable resolution of the issues between them which best satisfies their needs and individual interests, and that the parties have authority over the process, as well as ownership of the results. 

In cases involving conflicts concerning minor Children, decisions made by our Courts are made based upon reference to the phrase "Best Interests of the Child", an ill defined, and completely subjective standard. 

Who better to make such decisions?

A third party stranger, a Judge ?  Or, the child's parents ?

Importantly in Divorce, Parenting, or Separation cases involving children, our Courts recognize that parents should continue to be empowered to make the important decisions regarding their children's care and future upbringing.  

With these very important considerations in mind, I have included a number of articles on our Resources page which I believe offer invaluable information and insights with respect to the children who innocently become participants in the family dynamics triggered by the Divorce, or Separation, of their parents. 

I would especially recommend the following articles, which address these important issues: 

 - Using Child Development Research to Draft Parenting Plans

Insightful Article on Co-Parenting

-   Developing a Mutual Story of the Divorce

-   A Child's View of Long Distance Parenting

                                                                    Francis F Lane JD, CFM




Hanna Lane