Divorce Mediation and Shortening the Process

Divorce Mediation or Separation Mediation can be a longer process if you have a lot of possessions to divide or have a lot of children, especially with a large age range. It helps you a great deal if you can figure a few things out before you come in to see me. It is fastest to write down anything you have decided and hand the paper to me when you meet me the first time (I have a free consultation). That way, I can look it over quickly and tell you the pros and cons of your proposed Divorce Mediation settlement.

I can tell you whether a judge is likely to accept your proposals. The easier it is for a judge to accept a proposal means the faster your divorce. I can also tell you what are the problems and pitfalls of doing things the way you propose. For example, if you have a baby and plan on exchanging parenting time month by month, that is probably not going to be approved by the judge nor is it healthy for the baby. Babies need time with each parent every day or every other day to bond properly. Don’t laugh too much at this example- it is an actual case I had of two folks who lived 500 miles apart!

If it is not possible for you to meet and discuss face-to-face without a mediator, you can come up with a written list of things you want in a settlement. that way, when we meet we can talk about how well your ideas will work for the court, your children, and each other. Often it’s a combination of several proposals that work the best. Divorce mediation is straightforward at times, and more difficult at other times. My aim at Bickford Mediation is to make Divorce Mediation as easy and rewarding as possible.

Divorce Mediation 2019

This is my first blog post of 2019, so I wish you a happy new year.

Snow is on the ground, it’s cold and there is only a little more light than there was in December. For most people that means hunkering down, doing only what you have to do to get through the winter. For people who are contemplating divorce this is especially true. Most people simply put up with a bad marriage until spring, when they have more energy and it’s easier to move.

I encourage you to be different. Divorce can happen any time of year. This time of year it may be easier, because so few others are getting divorced. That means you can take your time, get things right and use the winter down time to recover from your divorce.

It’s counter-intuitive, I know. but think forward. In the spring, when you really feel like starting afresh, you can, instead of having 3 months of divorce proceedings hanging over your spring and summer. You will have the time to enjoy the warm weather, and work on those plans for the future.

You can’t garden in the winter, but you can plan, and planning makes all the difference. With divoce, you can do more than plan; you can start and finish your divorce now, so that the beauty of the spring can speak to your soul. You can plan now, so that the spring, divorce free, can be free of the pain and struggles you have dealt with in 2018. Seize the day, and be gentle with yourself and your kids. Divorce mediation instead of court is a big help at a tough time.

Heading for a Christmas Divorce? Try Divorce Mediation

Divorce is heart-breaking at any time of year, but especially at Christmas, that most family-oriented of holidays (the same can be said of Hanukkah). What other holiday celebrates the chance to give presents to everyone, and have special holiday meals and parties. Cookies, fudge, popcorn balls and ethnic delights abound. Families have traditions for Christmas that may go back a century or more.

Into the midst of this family celebration comes divorce. At its worst, divorce rears its ugly head and proclaims that all ideas of family are null and void. Family gathering are not only not joyful, but rather intensely painful, as you realize what you’ve lost, and perhaps haven’t had for years.

Is there such a thing as a “family-oriented” divorce? Divorce seems to be the opposite of family oriented, and yet if the essence of family is providing a safe and healthy atmosphere for children, then in some circumstances divorce is the best option for children’s health and safety.

If divorce is sometimes needed, then how best to divorce? Here Divorce Mediation is the best option. Parents figure out together what is best for the children, and not judges (who may be sympathetic but who don’t know your kids). Parents model for kids that even when grown-ups disagree, it doesn’t have to turn into an all-out war. Divorce mediation can teach your children an important lesson as well as preserving a working relationship for successful co-parenting.

Divorce mediation works. You decide what is best, and what works the best for the kids. You start out a divorce with cooperation, not confrontation. Divorce mediation means you know exactly what the divorce agreement means, because you wrote them. Everyone knows what to expect so there are fewer arguments.

Divorce mediation makes the best out of divorce. Parents and children can recover more quickly, and with much, much less emotional damage and baggage. If you must divorce, then divorce mediation is “win-win!”

Summer is Here And So Is Mediation for Kids’ School Schedules. try Divorce Mediation

When is the best time to mediate out divorced kids’ fall schedule? Summer, of course. Both parents are more relaxed and that makes working out differences much easier. Plus, you have a few months for divorce mediation before you need the schedule to kick in.

I have been helping parents work out custody schedules for many years. Divorce and divorce mediation are much easier with a seasoned professional like me. I know what works for most people and what doesn’t (hint: don’t exchange babies once a month as one couple I helped did). I also can help smooth out communication problems so the two of you can co-parent successfully. If you can’t work out your differences, your kids suffer, and You suffer, too. Not only do you want the best for your kids after a divorce, but kid problems mean even more time together having to work out what is best.

If you don’t want to see your ex on a regular basis, get a professional to help you work things out the right way, first. That way, even though you are divorced you can co-parent successfully. And when you do meet your ex, you can congratulate each other on how well your kids are turning out rather than trying to blame your kids’ problems on the other parent in a shouting match. Divorce mediation (without attorneys, if you can) is the way to go. Not only is it better for you and better for your kids, it’s also cheaper than paying $3000 retainers for each of you. Divorce mediation is simple, and, most often, faster than two attorneys duking it out in court.

When you use me you me for divorce mediation you get to decide what is best for your kids, not a judge who doesn’t know then. Divorce mediation is the way to go.

Spring is Here. Time For a Fresh Start. Divorce Mediation Can Help!

Hello Again!

This is the time of year many people decide to move on after a hard winter, including an April blizzard! If you’re thinking about divorce, or separating from your significant other, divorce mediation or separation mediation can help.

You can mediate with attorneys, but mediation without attorneys is much cheaper. Here’s how it goes:

Meet with me for a free consultation
Sign an agreement to mediate with me.
Solve your problems
Move on.

Now things are not quite that simple, but I can help you if you have worked most of your separation out, or if you haven’t a clue how to start. I can help you with techniques for separating money, possessions, and how to work out schedules for children and even pets. I know what works and what doesn’t work.

If you can’t even talk without arguing, I can help you establish ground rules, meet in separate rooms temporarily and in difficult cases I can shuttle back and forth; you can even meet at different times.

I am available to meet with you at a location near where you are, and I generally meet in easier 1-2 hour sessions, not marathon “do-it-or die” sessions. You get a chance to review what you decided before you agree to anything. I will make certain you understand what you agreed to, and how it may affect you and your relationship with you ex and with the kids if you have any.

I am here to serve. Make things easier on yourself and your kids! Call me! 612 670-7980 or
507-269-9079.

Glen

Anger, Divorce Mediation, Conflict Mediation and Parenting Consulting

Hello!
This post is about anger and the fight or flight response in particular we often get when we get upset. I was at a mediation class recently, and the presenter was Michael Gregory of Michael Gregory Consulting LLC. Mr. Gregory is a former IRS agent. Mr. Gregory said that there is lots of neuroscience research these days and one of the most interesting findings is how long a fight-or-flight response can affect a person, even after you calm down. I you get the response, you have about 9 seconds to calm down before your body gets flooded with chemicals that help you fight or flee, but are not terribly helpful for people trying to have a discussion. These chemicals stay in your system for 24 hours or until the next time you go to sleep. Not helpful for divorce mediation or parenting consulting!

The upshot of the research for mediation is that once you get this response, you are going to make mediation much harder for at least the rest of the day. We all should think about this in our interactions with others, but it is especially important for those who are in mediation. If you start to get upset for more than a few seconds, often it is better to take a break and calm down than to try to stick it out in session. If it reaches 10 seconds, then break for the day, however inconvenient that might be, or at least separate the parties in different rooms for divorce mediation or parenting consulting.

Tension Level, Divorce Mediation and Church Mediation

When people are trying to work out a particularly difficult problem in mediation, whether church mediation or divorce mediation, a couple things happen. Tempers begin to flair, of course, and often cutting and/or sarcastic remarks are exchanged. What else happens?

Often the fight or flight response comes on in your brain.When that happens, people have about 7 seconds to calm down, so experts tell me, before the brain is flooded with biochemicals. Now that isn’t bad when you’re a primitive person trying to deal with a tiger or a fire that might be coming your way. But it’s not very helpful when it comes to civil discussions. After 7 seconds, even if people do calm down, those chemicals stay in your system for 12 hours or until you sleep next. So in a sense, even if you do calm down after being upset, you’ve still lost, because those biochemicals are going to hang out in your brain, making arguments or emotional withdrawal much easier.

Sometimes the best thing you can do is to call it a day for the mediation session. Sometimes you can continue to work if you are in separate rooms, but it’s slower. If you do manage to calm people folks down in those first 7 seconds, then it is still best to take a break or at least work with just one party or group.

This can make divorce mediation or church mediation slow, tenuous and spread over many days. But often doing it this way is the only real opportunity for change in a challenging situation. The only other alternative is court, sad, but true

Spring is Almost Here. It’s Mediation Season!

It’s been a long, snowy winter here in Minnesota and many couples are feeling a bit testy. Or more than a bit. Every couple has issues, and issues don’t always have to lead to divorce and divorce mediation. Many issues can be resolved on your own without a mediator, if you are willing and able to communicate.
Many people in troubled marriages can’t communicate, or at least, not without help. That’s where I come in. I can help couples work things out so they don’t divorce. In cases where folks are simply not compatible any more (if you ever were), I can help you divorce amicably, affordably and relatively painlessly. For you folks who have never married, I can help, too. I can help you work out a child custody agreement that you can get signed into law by a judge or referee.

Conflict in relationships is almost never easy. I can help. Marriage mediation, divorce mediation and child custody issues I have lots of experience with. Do you need a parenting time expediter (PTE) or a parenting consultant, or even a custody evaluator and a full custody evaluation? I can do that too.
I can simply be someone to help you reach decisions with no other help from
me, or I can put my years of drafting agreements to use for you, with dozens of suggestions of what might work well for you, and what won’t work well for you or your children (do not exchange a baby month-by-month and expect him or her to have a good relationship with both parents). I know what works for you, and more importantly, I know what can work for your kids. Call me!612-670-7980 or 507-269-9079.

I can come to you for mediation. And you will get things done!

A Hint of Spring and Divorce Mediation

We human beings are creatures with moods that can be affected by so many things. One of the things that people seldom think of, but which can affect one’s mood dramatically is the weather. This is especially true of people who are considering separation and divorce. When we’re stressed by losing one of the most important relationships we have, we are often less aware of the things which affect us.

Today there is a hint of spring in the air in Minnesota. When things get spring-like, it is common that I get calls for divorce mediation or parenting consultant work. Now this time of year, people are not willing to make a big move. It’s still quite cold and snowy-covered. But they are thinking ahead to when they might have the energy to move on. I can help them to do that.

It is not easy for anyone involved with a divorce or separation, even though you both may believe it is in yours, and especially your children’s best interests. Mediation with me can make such a process as simple and comfortable as it can be (it never is really comfortable).

There are other ways to separate that are much more explosive and expensive. But those ways most often just make the pain and hardship even worse.

To make it through a divorce you need to handle one step at a time. I can help you take those steps. Call me for a free consultation. I am happy to help!

Co-Parenting During the Holidays (mediation can help)

The holidays are coming, and they present a unique challenge for couples who are divorced and separated. The patterns that were established when you were together are still there, and now whose house to go to has even more challenges. That’s why mediation can help. Divorce mediation or post-divorce mediation can make things a lot easier. I have worked with hundreds of couples, so I have a few ideas about child custody that you may not have thought of:

How important is celebrating on the exact day of the holiday?

If you celebrate before or after, it is easier to schedule family time, easier to get food and presents at stores or online because you’re not fighting other people trying to do the same thing. You can breeze through stores in nothing flat. Your young children will not even know when the holiday is. Older kids will generally not care, especially if the holiday is celebrated earlier. They may even get more presents and special meals that way.

How important is it to have ALL the family together?

Celebrating in smaller groups can be less hectic, and enable your loved ones to spend more time with their family one-on-one. games are possible in groups of 4-6 that may not be possible with larger groups. You may even be able to avoid difficult Uncle Ernie the drunk or Great Aunt Susie the cheek-pincher. It is often less expensive, and perhaps more meaningful.

What is the most important holiday for you and your children?

You can often trade holidays that are important to an ex who wants them (Christmas for 4th of July) so you both win.

With these and many other questions I can ask, you can make co- parenting work, even during the holidays. Schedule a free appointment and you’ll see what I mean.

Glen