Twenty-first century institutions are in a time of transition. Workplaces can be anywhere there’s a computer and an internet connection; education can take place at home, online, or in buildings, families are created by people who love each other, regardless of gender or roles. As our culture adapts to the diverse ways and means of working, learning and, loving, we are experiencing new ways of perceiving marriage and divorce.
The astronomical divorce rate can lead one to speculate that our society is going to hell in a hand basket. What’s wrong with us that we can’t get it right the first or second or even the third time around? Are we so selfish, immature, and impulsive that either we don’t choose the right mate or have the ability to stick with our spouse through thick and thin? Or are we immoral, insatiable and self-indulgent? And if so, why do we marry again and perhaps even a third time or more?
It seems we humans long for a mate. But it’s not that the spirit is willing and the flesh is weak. Rather the flesh is getting stronger all the time. The average life span in the United States in the 19th century was 35.1 years, 70.8 years in the 20th century and thus far in the 21st century estimated to be 78.8 years. Our ancestors didn’t live long enough to grow apart from their spouses. And isn’t that often what we say – “We grew apart”? And when we acknowledge there is no path back, what are our choices for dissolving the relationship? While not minimizing the pain and distress of parting, isn’t it possible that a thoughtful, respectful, equitable divorce could be perceived as an accomplishment, rather than a failure?
We have professionals we can call upon to help us in our quest for personal growth, career and college planning, spiritual enlightenment, weight loss. Why not for divorce?
Divorce mediation offers a sensible alternative to the traditional adversarial litigated divorce usually accompanied by a high level of stress and a high financial cost. A qualified, experienced divorce mediator can effectively guide a couple through the decisions about parenting, finances and property in a program that reduces stress, protects the children and save money & time. Mediation helps couples navigate the obstacles to creating an agreement that will achieve the best possible outcome for themselves and their families.
At the Alpha Center for Divorce Mediation, one client summed it up this way: “Mediation is absolutely the right way to go and the continued support has helped make a life changing event turn into an opportunity to begin a new chapter.”
That’s what divorce can look like in the 21st century – a new chapter, instead of a closed book.
©2016 Alpha Center for Divorce Mediation