Mediation Part 3 – After the Day

You survived the day of mediation, we knew you would! It wasn’t easy and it was always going to be challenging. Irrespective of the actual outcome you have participated in a process where you now have a better understanding of all perspectives and hopefully a clarity about the issues in dispute. The mediation will have demonstrated that communication about disputed issues is possible even if agreements were not reached.

Possible Outcomes: You may have been able to reach agreements in:

  • a) Full or
  • b) In part or
  • c) you may not have been able to reach agreement at all. 

If you have managed to reach agreements about all or part of the disputed issues the details of that agreement will usually be recorded and signed by all parties either at the end of the mediation or as soon as possible after. Your Lawyer will guide you through what form the agreements take, they can be formal or informal, it may be a Parenting Plan. Depending on your case the court may need to be informed of your agreements/plan with your consent, to determine the future involvement of the court. It may be that that the Mediator issues a Certificate (sect 60I) to indicate to identify the issue for an unsuccessful mediation.

Emerging emotions: After mediation it is normal for you to experience a range of emotions from elation to anger. You may feel emotional burdens lifted or depending on your desired outcome, heavier. It is important to acknowledge your emotions and regulate them. Take some time to process them. Stay positive, congratulate yourself for participating wholly in the Mediation. Engage in professional support, start with your GP, if you feel overwhelmed or impacted negatively by your emotions. It is important to keep your mental health in check during stressful times.

Talk it through:  Mediation was a big day. You had your supporters backing you from a distance and willing you success in the process. Post Mediation your support network is keen to know the outcomes and you naturally want to talk it through with them. Remember that whilst it is important to process the outcome with people, the opinion and input of others who were not present at the mediation may be unhelpful. Talk it through with a trusted ally or professional who understands how important resolution is. Remember that mediation is private and confidential. Don’t let other’s undermine all the hard work you have done to get this far.

Commitment: If you were able to reach agreements, it is important to maintain the commitment to those agreements that you made at Mediation even if they were not your ideal. It might be that you made compromises that you now need to adjust to. These agreements were part of negotiations and it is your responsibility to implement the arrangements as agreed. You now have the parameters in which to focus on your and your children’s future. If after a period of implementation or unanticipated change, there is always potential to renegotiate the agreements.

Child Focus: Your agreements will have considered what is in the best interest and wellbeing of the child. It will always be important to maintain that strong child focus post mediation. Now is the time to focus on support, predictability, security and consistency for your child. It might be a time for new adaptations and adjustments that you will need to champion with your children.

At NLS Law we are committed to you achieving strong, realistic outcomes from Mediation. Our Lawyers are both skilled and compassionate in supporting clients to participate in Mediation.

“Commitment is what transforms a promise into a reality”.

 Abraham Lincoln

Chanel Hughes, Child and Family Case Consultant, NLS LAW