Patience Pays Off

Oct 1, 2021

For almost everyone, divorce is very difficult, even when both spouses know the marriage needs to end and think they can agree on how to move forward. There is often a sense of loss, maybe even failure, and self-examination—what went wrong?

When there is not a shared sense that the marriage is over, one of you may feel ready while the other may not feel prepared or equipped to engage in the serious process of determining what separate futures will look like. It may also be that, as the mediation process unfolds, one is wishing it would end (with an agreement and closure) while the other is still processing. What seems to one of you as a delay is a cry by the other for more time to make important decisions.

As the mediator who will guide the process, I aim to acknowledge the goal of the spouse who is motivated to finish, while at the same time recognizing the other’s need for time to process information and become emotionally ready to make acceptable decisions.

This situation calls for abundant patience—to allow time so that both of you feel involved, engaged, informed and heard. As the mediator who will guide the process, I aim to acknowledge the goal of the spouse who is motivated to finish, while at the same time recognizing the other’s need for time to process information and become emotionally ready to make acceptable decisions.

I also remind everyone that the alternative to a possibly slow mediation process is bringing the case to court, a choice that is almost always guaranteed to cause an even longer delay in concluding the marriage. You may well be stressed, worried and wishing the process would end, but a switch to litigation is not likely to result in the outcome you wished for.