When you are going through a divorce that involves child custody, your emotions may be running high throughout the process. If you and your spouse are involved in mediation to discuss child custody arrangements, this will offer you numerous advantages. Along with having your lawyer present to help guide you through each session, you will also have far more freedom to make various decisions than you would if you were inside a courtroom. However, this does not mean discussions may not get heated at times and concern topics that may be difficult to discuss. If you let your emotions get the best of you, it is possible you may say things that could be keep you from getting the agreement you are seeking. Should you be involved in mediation, here are some things you should never say while in negotiations.
Don’t Always Say “My” Children
When creating a child custody agreement with your spouse, do not always say “my” children. If you do, this fails to acknowledge your spouse as the other parent, and will without a doubt hinder your mediation sessions. Since both of you will still be heavily involved in the lives of your children, it is best to always say “our” children instead. By doing so, you are much more likely to get the results you seek.
Don’t Use the Mediation Session for Accusations
Even if you are not pleased with your spouse about various matters concerning finances or other matters, your mediation session about child custody is not the time to start making various accusations about certain topics. Should you let your emotions get the best of you, the mediation session will not only veer off-topic in a hurry, but the mediator may actually end the session.
Don’t Say “Yes” to Everything
In some mediation sessions concerning child custody, one parent who may be afraid of not getting a favorable agreement may tend to say “yes” to everything demanded from the other spouse. If you make this mistake, you will undoubtedly walk away with a custody agreement that is far less than what you wanted. While you want to have a good working relationship with your soon-to-be ex-spouse moving forward, you also want to make sure the final custody agreement works to your advantage as well.
Don’t Say You Don’t Need Your Lawyer Present
Even though you are not in a courtroom, this does not mean you should enter a mediation session without your lawyer by your side. Therefore, never tell your spouse that you don’t need a lawyer to assist you in this matter. If you do, your spouse will know from the beginning they have a decided advantage against you, and will no doubt use it to get as much as possible that benefits them in the final agreement.
Don’t Make Unreasonable Demands
If you go into your child custody mediation session making unreasonable demands, such as wanting the kids to spend all holidays with you, chances are you won’t get very far with your spouse or the mediator. Therefore, don’t think you can use your sessions to make one demand after another in an effort to pressure or intimidate your spouse. Instead, maintain your composure, come to the sessions prepared, and work with your attorney, your spouse, and the mediator to reach an agreement that will benefit the two of you as well as your kids.As with most situations in life, knowing how to choose your words carefully while using common sense and good judgment will help you obtain a child custody agreement that works well for everyone involved, especially your children.