Acceptance: The Key to Family Mediation

ACCEPTANCE can be a key to successful mediation, not just as an acronym, but as a valuable goal.

  • All parents and children experience loss during and after divorce. It is normal to experience grief for those losses.

  • The grief process* which binds parents and children together begins in the stage of DENIAL and ends in the stage of ACCEPTANCE.

  • Parents are seldom in the same stage at the same time. This can add to the chaos.

  • We are expected to make some very important decisions when the chaos is greatest.

  • Understanding that these stages of recovery and healing are built into us as human beings and a part of the normal grief process can help us reduce the chaos and move toward the stage of ACCEPTANCE.

  • Remember the word ACCEPTANCE. It can be a guide as you make those important decisions for yourselves and for your children.

* See Elizabeth Kübler-Ross, On Death and Dying

Agree that it's OK to disagree.
Check the written agreement.
Center on Common Ground.
Eliminate communication barriers.
Pursue the problem, not the person.
Talk when the children are not around.
Accept the other parent as part of your support.
Negotiate in good faith with self-respect and respect for the other parent.
Call a time out if emotions escalate.
Encourage each other.

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Glenna O. Auxier


Robert J. Perchalski, Ph.D.
Curriculum Coordinator

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