If you are separating or divorcing there are issues that you need to sort out like the division of your assets and the continued parenting of your children.
My self-help e-book “Parenting Your Way Through Divorce” can help you write a formal Parenting Plan. Why bother? Well,if you actually sit down and answer the questions and write up the answers it gives you a thought through approach and ideally you each do this and then discuss it together. If you are not at the stage of being able to talk reasonably alone then mediation as part of the process may work for you.
Mediation is about meeting with an independent professional who is trained to facilitate the two of you negotiating an equitable settlement – financially and over the access and care of the children.
In an ideal world the parents put the needs of the children first. If there is emotional immaturity or bitterness or depression on either side this may not be possible without intervention by an outsider. Frequently people are hurt by the other person and can want revenge or simply want to not speak to that person ever again. This is where the solicitor becomes useful as it is a matter of trying to reach an agreement that the court will accept…preferably before you get before a judge.
When getting married people tend not to think of it as a legal process – it is romantic and can be religious. It is a legal contract which is why you need legal advice about your rights and responsibilities when you want to leave a marriage. You cannot simply walk away.
If there is a power imbalance as in domestic violence or emotional abuse, you may find that mediation is not appropriate. See my blog about that at www.Goodreads.com