Mediation is a helpful place to discuss and resolve separation matters but sometimes it may not be suitable.
Our mediators would consider with you whether or not mediation is right for you and if it is safe for you at this time. Together you would want to come to the right decision.
It would be important that the parties in mediation do not feel fearful or intimidated as we need to ensure that balanced discussions can take place. Mediation would not go ahead if there is any domestic violence happening between you now. Certainly our mediators would not force you or your partner to come to mediation.
Our mediators do not provide counselling about your past relationship but they can help you find others that will help with this and signpost you to the right place.
Our mediators want to create a safe environment to enable you to talk about things and to help you and your partner think through the situation and make the right decisions. We have to ensure that mediation is safe and a sensible option. We do want you to feel free to be able to negotiate and talk openly. If necessary mediation can take place with you both in separate rooms.
Quite simply, in a lot of situations where there has been domestic violence, mediation would not be appropriate but this would be discussed carefully between you and the mediator at your mediation information assessment meeting. A careful decision between yourself and the mediator would need to be made as to whether or not this is the right and safe process for you. This is one of the reasons why we always ensure that the first meeting between you and the mediator at your mediation information assessment meeting is an individual meeting where you can talk openly about issues. You will be asked about your present situation so that you can then make an informed choice about mediation.