Are you and your spouse considering mediation to resolve family disputes? If you have a teenage child, it’s important to understand how including them in the process can affect the outcome. In this guide, we will discuss what you need to know about including your teenager in mediation sessions.
Why involve your teenager in mediation?
- Voice and input
Including your teenager in mediation gives them the opportunity to voice their opinions and concerns. They can provide valuable insights into how they are feeling and what they want to see happen moving forward.
- Better understanding
Mediation can be a confusing process, especially for teenagers who may not understand the legal jargon or the complexities of the situation. By including them in the mediation sessions, they can gain a better understanding of what’s happening and why certain decisions are being made.
When teenagers feel like they have a say in the outcome, it can help them feel more empowered and in control. This can be particularly important during divorce or separation when so much feels out of their control.
How to prepare your teenager for mediation
- Explain the process
Before the mediation sessions begin, take the time to explain the process to your teenager. Let them know what to expect and answer any questions they may have. You can also provide them with resources such as books or articles about mediation to help them understand further.
- Offer support
Going through family conflict can be stressful and emotional for everyone involved, including your teenager. Make sure they know that they have your support and that they can come to you with any concerns or questions they may have.
- Consider counseling
If your teenager is struggling with the conflict, consider counseling to help them cope. A mental health professional can provide them with the tools they need to manage their emotions and navigate the process.
What to expect during mediation
- Neutral third-party
Mediation involves a neutral third-party mediator who is trained to facilitate discussions and help parties come to an agreement. The mediator is not there to take sides but rather to ensure that everyone’s voice is heard and that decisions are made in the best interest of all parties involved.
- Open discussions
During the sessions, everyone involved will have the opportunity to share their thoughts and feelings. The mediator will encourage open discussions and help guide the conversation towards resolution.
Mediation sessions are confidential, which means that what is discussed during the sessions cannot be used in court. This can help everyone involved feel more comfortable sharing their thoughts and concerns.
Overview: Why including your teenager in mediation is important
Including your teenager in mediation can provide them with a sense of control and empowerment during family conflict. By giving them a voice and involving them in the process, they can gain a better understanding of what’s happening and feel more connected to the outcome. If you’re considering mediation, don’t hesitate to reach out to Family Mediation Choice for support and guidance throughout the process.