How Child-Centered Divorce Mediation Can Help Your Family

How Child-Centered Divorce Mediation Can Help Your Family


Divorce is hard, no matter the circumstances. While your divorce could be relatively amicable, it still requires an adjustment and uprooting from the life that you once had together in marriage. Divorce often gets messier when children are involved as your family struggles to find a new normal between households and custody battles.

January is International Child-Centered Divorce Month in an effort to help those families going through divorce focus more on the needs and wants of the children involved. It is reported that many divorces are initiated in January since couples wait until after the holiday season. Divorce is the ending of a marriage and the end of a lifestyle that can significantly affect the children involved.

When a divorce occurs in a family with younger children, it almost always leaves a mark. Sometimes that mark is minimal, while other times, the divorce follows these children into adulthood and greatly affects their overall lives. Often, the level of conflict between parents is the number one predictor in how the child adjusts.

That’s why child-centered divorce mediation is the best way to walk through a divorce as a parent. Not only is mediation a less combative way to part ways with a spouse, but it also helps give your children a voice to the decision that will affect them for the rest of their lives. Learn more about how child-centered divorce mediation can help your family jumpstart the healing process.

Children Are the Focus, Not the Pawn

When parents get divorced, children are often caught up in the middle of the fight. Either purposely or subconsciously, children are often used as pawns to help justify a parent’s plans. In child-centered divorce mediation, children are put in the center of the divorce, and the parents have to work their way around their children.

Instead of a tug-of-war battle where kids are being pulled from one parent to the other, children are placed in the proverbial eye of the storm while parents work around them. In short, children are the priority in child-centered divorce mediation. If both parents still feel that their child has special needs to address, a collaborative divorce that includes a child specialist may be a good fit as well.

Parents Work Together

One of the best parts of child-centered divorce mediation is that the parents come together to solve the problem. Mediation is powerful in its ability to find solutions with a certified divorce mediator. Both parents come to the table with the willingness to put their kids first in the process.

Parents understand that divorce is not the children’s choice but that it greatly affects the rest of their lives. When parents choose a child-centered divorce mediation approach, they make their children’s welfare the priority while they work out the details of the divorce amicably.

Less Fighting, More Collaboration

Research shows that children who experience divorce have an increased risk of issues in the future. Oftentimes, it is the way that parents handle the divorce that can cause the most damage. Child-centered divorce mediation allows parents the opportunity to work together rather than engage in arguments and fighting.

Knowing that you can talk about an issue at an upcoming mediation often allows parents to hold off on fighting for the sake of the children involved. Mediation helps parents talk about issues in a neutral environment, where a mediator helps move along the conversation. Less fighting and more collaboration in divorce help everyone involved, not only the children.

Find Solutions on Your Schedule

When you work with a divorce mediator, there is no strict timeline or scheduling process like there is in litigation. As long as both parents and the mediator are available, you can schedule mediation sessions that meet your own needs. This can be helpful in a child-centered divorce mediation as parents can quickly find a solution and the family can move on instead of being caught in a long and lengthy court process.

When facing a divorce as a parent, it is crucial to consider the feelings and impact that the divorce will have on the children. Choosing a child-centered divorce allows you to put your child’s needs first while figuring out the rest of the logistics. Not only is a child-centered divorce necessary for the future of your child, but it also helps initiate and grow the connection between you and the child as well.

Learn more about child-centered divorce mediation by contacting Donita King Law Offices today. Call for a free consultation about both in-person and online mediations. Take the first step in learning more about how child-centered divorce mediation can help your family moving forward.

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Donita King

Ms. King is a member of the Virginia, Pennsylvania, and D.C. State Bars. She also serves as a University of Richmond School of Law Adjunct Professor of Mediation. She previously served on the Virginia Bar Association Joint ADR Council (2015 Chair), and served for several years on the Governor of Virginia’s Interagency Dispute Resolution Council. Ms. King currently serves as a board member of the Virginia State Bar Disciplinary Board by appointment of the Virginia Supreme Court and has been active with the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Hispanic Women in Business as well. Se habla espanol.

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