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Behavior matters during divorce mediation

In a Texas marriage, control can be either a positive or a negative element. If one's partner is controlling, for instance, that can signal problems down the road. On the other hand, if both partners seek shared control over the direction of their union, good things can result. These options can exist in a divorce as well. If both partners vie for control over property division, for example, a drawn-out battle can ensue. However, if both parties commit to cooperation, mutually beneficial solutions can be bred.

In Texas, a helpful option for spouses taking the second path can be found in mediation. An alternative to more traditional forms of dispute resolution, mediation focuses on problem-solving and combined effort. Some people believe, though, that willingness to negotiate is a sign of weakness and that mediation will not work when the strong emotions of a divorce are at work.

It is true that feelings often dictate behavior during divorce, and demeanor can influence the outcome of mediation. If one partner is attempting to seize control of certain things, such as child custody, in order to exact revenge upon the other party, the lines of communication can become damaged. Fortunately, attorneys experienced in the mediation process know how to keep those lines open and working amidst strong emotions.

Still, the efforts of a mediation-trained professional can be complemented by the efforts of each party to a divorce. Spouses can increase their chances for a positive mediation outcome by dealing with disputes individually, rather than all together. Spouses can also address each other in a civil tone, acknowledge areas of agreement, show a willingness to engage in give-and-take, and make it clear from the start that dispute resolution is in the interest of all.

Source: The Huffington Post, "Your demeanor can affect your divorce mediation," Diane L. Danois, July 23, 2013.

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Attorney Christine K. Lincoln

Christine K. Lincoln offers sound counsel and legal services to protect clients and their families facing divorce and other family disputes.

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