When a couple chooses to divorce, the process can take a number of paths. Some of them are more desirable than others. A poorly handled divorce can leave both spouses with years of emotional baggage and financial burdens, while a successful divorce may resolve in a matter of months and set both spouses up well to build a new life.

If you hope to achieve a respectful, dignified divorce, you’re in luck — it is possible. However, like a garden you might grow in your yard, no successful divorce happens accidentally. There are simply too many opportunities for either side to give in to their worst instincts during this difficult season. Without making civil divorce an intentional priority, it is unlikely that you and your spouse will wake up one day divorced and satisfied with the process and the results.

Instead, it is more effective to seek out legal counsel from an attorney who understands the value of calm, respectful divorce and who can create strategies to prioritize civility and dignity.

You may also find that divorce mediation allows you and your spouse to reach fair, respectful agreements instead of dragging each other through endless court dates or fighting for months over the issues.

Financial advantages of mediation

One of the primary advantages of mediation is that it intends to facilitate respectful divorce agreements. Unlike a courtroom, a mediation venue is both neutral and private, but like a courtroom, you and your spouse can reach legally binding agreements.

On a practical level, many couples consider mediation for financial reasons. Typically, mediation resolves issues in a divorce more quickly than a series of court dates. This usually means that both parties can reach an agreement without draining as much of their resources as they might otherwise.

Privacy and mediation

In general, documentation of divorce court appearances become public records, which anyone can access. For many families, divorce is best when it is calm and private. This is especially true in island communities like ours, where communities tend to overlap and interweave, making privacy more difficult and important.

Mediation sessions are generally private, which means that you can work on your divorce in mediation and leave it there. In most cases, mediation sessions are confidential.

Emotional advantages of meditation

Mediation also creates a good environment for spouses to work through their issues in a less combative way than traditionally litigated divorce. A neutral mediator works with each side to reach fair compromises.

Especially if you have children, this process can serve as an opportunity to be the healthy, respectful person that you are at your best, rather than the combative, petty person you might exhibit at your worst. Mediation can create opportunities for both parties to express their good qualities and work with each other to dissolve the marriage fairly.

If mediation fits your divorce needs, don’t hesitate to consult with an experienced attorney to build a strategy for achieving the respectful divorce you want.