Divorce With Dignity

The Two MulesLancaster Law Office helps separating partners complete their transition to independent lives with expertise and compassion, while minimizing financial injury to the partners and emotional injury to the partners, their children, and their extended families.
Why should you mediate or collaborate your divorce?  People tell themselves stories about life's big events.  Americans like this story about divorce:  Divorce is hell, your spouse will take you to the cleaners financially and abuse your kids to boot; you need a pitbull attorney to defend your interests.  Americans spin this yarn in coffee-klatches, on basket ball courts, around kitchen tables, wherever friends and family share.  For some, this story is true.  For many, this story comes true because it is the only story they tell themselves.  Mediation and collaboration tell a different story about divorce:  You and your spouse are at one of life's inevitable transitions.  Your relationship has changed, and now your circumstances must follow suit.  Partners who fundamentally respect one another can be fair and transparent in disagreements, and with some hard work, they can reach agreements that protect both spouse's interests and keep children safer.  Divorce is a moment of meaningful, well-directed, adult change.  Try the mediation and collaboration story on for size.  Most people like the fit.

Traditional litigated divorces often shred relationships irreparably.  People do and say things about which they later feel shame.  Fear drives people.  Fearful people behave imprudently.  The adversarial court system exacerbates these tendencies, requiring parties to emphasize their spouse’s worst moments.  Frequently, after litigated divorces, former partners never again speak a civil word to one another.  The biggest losers in this American debacle are the partners' children.  For children, how partners divorce matters more than that they divorce.

You may minimize conflict in divorce.  You can separate respectfully.  With adequate support and safety, partners can express their highest values and purposes.  They can let go unreasonable positions and long-held injuries.  They can examine their fears and gather information.  Partners can listen to one another and create solutions tailored to their particular family.  Partners can negotiate fairly, and conduct themselves well.  In choosing a less adversarial approach to divorce, partners protect their children.  When they complete their collaborative divorce, partners can feel they divorced with dignity.  Their children will thank them, when they reach an age to recognize courageous acts of love.

You may want to review some answers to frequently asked questions concerning divorce.