Family Co-Mediation Dispute Resolution
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Co-Mediation Areas
At Family Co-Mediation, we work with many kinds of family relationships, beyond the marital arena.  For example, we work with:
  • Parents and their children – An obvious arena for conflict is between parents and teenagers, but conflicts that arise with younger children can also benefit from mediation.

  • Adult children and their older parents – Even when children become adults and move away from home, important conflicts can happen, especially around major life stage transitions such as parents' retirement, the arrival of grandchildren, estate planning, assisted living arrangements, etc.

  • Adult siblings – Sometimes adult siblings struggle over plans they must make for aging and ailing parents, or over plans following the death of a parent.

  • Blended families – The remarriage of adults with children can create a host of conflicts between parents and stepchildren, and among step-siblings that could benefit from mediation.

  • Divorced parents – Co-parenting from separate households can be especially challenging for divorced couples.

  • Couples – Even couples who want to maintain their relationship can turn to mediation to assist in seemingly insurmountable conflict.

  • Family businesses – Conflicts between relatives who are also trying to run a successful business together can carry great risk on many levels.

Here are some possible scenarios in which families might turn to mediation:

Steve and Sally
Steve and Sally are trying to stay calm as the passing minutes turn into hours. It is 2:00 a.m., well past their 15 year old daughter's curfew.  And this is not the first time. They don't know how things got so out of hand.

Their emotions alternate between panic and rage. Becky has threatened to run away if they keep "trying to control her life."  She has stopped doing her homework, and lately she has even skipped school.  She has come home drunk a few times, and grounding her hasn't worked. She just screams "you can't make me stay home" and storms out.

Anna
Anna stares blankly out her kitchen window. Today is her 70th birthday, but she doesn't feel like celebrating. For 50 years she worked to build a business she could leave to her children.

She had assumed that by now she would be retired and able to do the traveling and relaxing she had denied herself for years. But her sons, both of whom have joined the business, are fighting, and she's afraid to leave.

Their arguments over business decisions have turned personal, each accusing the other of being her favorite son.

Connor Family

When Bill died 4 years ago, he selected Maggie, the second of his four children, to manage the family trusts and investments and to take care of their mother, who was in failing health.

The two youngest children, John and Martha, were relieved to avoid this burden, but Andy, the eldest, was furious. Even though Maggie was a professional in the field of finance, he didn't trust her. 

Recently, their mother died, and it is time to divide the estate. But Andy is threatening to sue Maggie in court. And now John and Martha are furious, because it will take years for them to finally take possession of their inheritance.


Mediator's Role


In all of these situations, the role of the mediators is to:

  • Facilitate communication
  • Promote mutual understanding
  • Focus the parties on their interests
  • Seek creative problem solving
  • Enable to parties to move beyond their blocks and reach their own agreements


Mediation at Family Co-Mediation often leads to a win/win outcome in which relationships that were stressed and fragile can rebuild and transform.