In any successful relationship, trust is the foundation. When you can trust someone, you are more likely to be open and more willingly vulnerable in that person’s presence.
In many broken marriages, the trust between spouses has diminished—a little or even to the point of being missing entirely. For example, trust evaporates when there has been infidelity or a lack of honesty.
In divorce mediation cases, the absence of trust can be quite challenging. An underlying principle of mediation is that you both make a good faith effort to work toward an agreement that will satisfy both of you. Even when trust is at a low, protocols that include full financial disclosure (and possibly sworn financial affidavits) can provide the fuel for agreements in spite of loss of trust.
While it can be difficult or in some cases nearly impossible to rebuild trust, there are elements of trust, which I describe as pillars, that you can consider employing during the mediation process.
While it can be difficult or in some cases nearly impossible to rebuild trust, there are elements of trust, which I describe as pillars, that you can consider employing during the mediation process. The goal does not have to be rebuilding trust (although when that does happen, the chances of a better future relationship are greatly improved). The goal can simply be to prevent your mediation discussions from stalling or going backwards.
Here is a list of those pillars that help to form a foundation of trust. Recognizing and addressing these can lead to a better mediation process.
Keeping these pillars in mind as you navigate the difficult conversations of mediation may create a positive vibe—or at least prevent a negative one—and may even help the process go faster, which is what most clients seek.