In a recent post, I discussed team building as essential to carrying out many mediated agreements. But sometimes it’s not in the cards. Simply, the parties haven’t reached the point (or may never reach the point) where they can sit down at the same table physically or via Skype or Facetime and hammer out an agreement.
The toxicity may be too high. Distrust astronomical. Positions entrenched. Or one party may be so certain of a favorable judicial ruling that she outright dismisses any interest in mediation. What to do?
Mediators can’t perform magic. Nor produce miracles. Or predict the future. What we can do in divorce and custody cases is encourage the parents’ to shift focus from what they want to what their children need. Or, in elder and adult family matters, we can encourage the adult children to downplay unresolved jealousies and long-standing distrust to the pressing concerns of their aging parents. [Read more…]