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Keep communication running smoothly during divorce

You want to get divorced, but you're also interested in mediation. You think that you and your spouse can sit down together, with a mediator, and work things out.

Moreover, that's what you want to do. You dread having a judge make decisions for you. You know that mediation allows you to make those decisions yourself, settling on the things that are best for the family, as long as you can work together and get along.

And that's the trick, isn't it? Because divorce is not always easy. You may feel at odds with each other. It may be hard to talk. How can you communicate well during this process so that you can make mediation a reality? After all, the key is communication, and you need to know how to make it work.

Keep emotions out of it

First of all, think about how you feel when you have important conversations with your ex. Never do so when you feel angry, sad or frustrated. Don't let emotions take over. Know when you need to step back and cool off before continuing the process.

Think about getting off of social media

It may feel like an easy way to communicate, but the opposite is often true. You may see status updates you don't really want to read. You may be all too ready to send an angry online message. Stick to face-to-face communication or talk on the phone if you must. It's wise to have a conversation with your spouse about the types of communication you'd like to use.

Pick your topics

One way to streamline the process is to pick a topic for the meeting. It could be alimony, asset division, child custody, etc. Trying to do it all at once may prove to be too much. Picking a topic keeps you focused and gets results. Then move on to the next.

Do not think of it as a contest

A trial case may feel like a contest, but the goal of mediation is to work together. Don't make this about winning. Don't make it about you or your spouse. Focus on what you can do together to find a solution that works for both of you.

Put the kids first in everything

The above is even more true when you have children. Then, the goal shifts a bit: What can you do to make their lives the best they can possibly be? When you have that mindset, communication is easy. You both have the same goal.

Getting started

As you can see, you have a lot to consider with divorce mediation. Make sure you know exactly what steps you need to take as you get started.

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