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(16 Posts)
becausewecan Sat 20-Aug-11 13:39:20

Hi can anyone give me advice on mediation please and how to get started?
I cannot communicate with my ex any longer. He talks over me, won't listen and refuses to be reasonable. I want him to keep seeing DD but he is making it so difficult. He can't communicate on an adult level and I end up so frustrated. Anyone know how I get the ball rolling?

piellabakewell Sat 20-Aug-11 14:10:57

I haven't been through it myself but there's more info here. Good luck.

Newbabynewmum Sat 20-Aug-11 14:50:34

Do you have a solicitor? They can advise u of firms that offer the service in the area. Or u can find out online. I had my first one this week but ex won't do anymore. Depends on the circumstance how useful it will be. I found it useful as I could talk to my ex honestly without worrying about his temper. Beyond that we agreed on nothing. But he's a very difficult man. Give it a go. I hope it goes well xx

Meglet Sat 20-Aug-11 14:55:01

I tried it with XP.

He was thrown out for getting angry (after being told to calm down several times)!

The lady in charge of the session was really fair but after a while even she could see he wasn't willing to behave like an adult. She told him to get help / therapy with his anger. TBH it was a relief another person had seen how he behaved and gave me confidence in not taking any more crap from him.

So we tried a contact centre, and he refused to turn up. Case closed.

Newbabynewmum Sat 20-Aug-11 15:29:14

The best part of mine was the mediator telling EX to read some self help books and do some counselling to help him re: his abusive behaviour. He didn't listen. Obviously.

keepmefromcourt Sat 20-Aug-11 16:15:57

i thought mediators weren't supposed to take sides?

both meglet and newbabynewmum's experiences suggest otherwise to me.

i'm about to start mediation too, so will watch this thread carefully. but i'd be less willing to try it if i thought a complete stranger would pass that kind of judgement on me (not that i plan to be angry and lose my temper btw)

Meglet Sat 20-Aug-11 16:24:29

They pass judgement when people start yelling and won't calm down.

Otherwise she didn't take sides. She tried really hard to help but XP wasn't having any of it.

After XP had left the office she just gave me a 'OMFG <<eye rolling>>' look.

Newbabynewmum Sat 20-Aug-11 16:28:41

He didn't take sides. It was just a suggestion as something my EX could do to show me that he's dealing with his issues. He also suggested I have counselling which I have already done and have moved on, accepted it, and am over it.

It's a very hard thing to do so good luck. I did find it quite liberating being able to talk freely and air all of my grievances.

keepmefromcourt Sat 20-Aug-11 16:58:32

ok, well that's some reassurance, thanks newbaby and meg.

I'm really dreading it tbh. Ex and I don't have a bad relationship (at least I didn't think we did). He's suggested it because he feels disenfranchised from parenting our dd. But that's because he moved hundreds of miles away and only visits once a month (and doesn't ever call to find out how she is inbetween times)

He thinks i am overly cautious bc i do not want her (2.7) to go abroad for a week without me and that i am over-protective. I will not take kindly to a stranger passing judgement on my parenting, though. Is that something that is likely to happen?

sorry for hijack, OP!blush

Meglet Sat 20-Aug-11 17:41:09

Just to give you an idea of what can be discussed;

At the time (well until a few weeks before mediation when he really kicked off) XP was seeing the DC's a couple of times a week - when it suited him (ie; no weekend mornings, finished by 7pm so he could go to the pub). He was pissed off that I said sometimes if they had a friends party to go to he would have to see them another time that weekend - he thought that was unreasonable and they should miss friends parties if it was his time with them, he wasn't prepared to be flexible at all. TBH I wasn't sure if I was BU asking him to let them go to parties. The meditiation officer said he must be flexible when things like parties / visiting relatives cropped up. He argued about it, quite a lot (then was kicked out), but the mediation officer wasn't budging - she was very much pro-the children's best interests.

Personally I wouldn't be comfortable with someone who only see's a young child once a month taking them abroad. He should rack up more frequent visits first IMHO.

keepmefromcourt Sat 20-Aug-11 18:22:54

thanks meg that's what i think. hope my mediator is as pro-child as yours.

may i ask (sorry again OP!) how many sessions you had before XP kicked off?

becausewecan Sat 20-Aug-11 19:59:51

Thanks for the info everyone. Really interesting to hear about other people's experiences.
We have had a pretty good relationship for the last year and I have never stopped him seeing DD but communications have broken down in the last few weeks.
I doubt he will agree to mediation but I think it sounds a really good idea.
He thinks I'm being unreasonable as I won't take DD out of nursery to accommodate his new mid week days off.
Its only 8 weeks since I had to rearrange everything to fit his last new job and I can't keep chopping and changing my own job or nursery.
All I've said is that I need him to be in a job more than 6 months before I start relying on him for childcare. Is that unfair?

He's never had her overnight and is now demanding he has her Sunday to Tuesday even though he works Sundays. Apparently his girlfriend of 2 weeks will watch her till he gets back. She's only 1 and I think he's misunderstanding the point of contact is for him to see DD sad
I haven't got a solicitor at the moment so might get some legal advice too.
All I want to do is come to a reasonable agreement regarding contact but he won't discuss any arrangements that don't work entirely round him.

good luck keepmefromcourt, how did you get the mediation process started?

keepmefromcourt Sat 20-Aug-11 20:51:24

Bloody hell because, your ex sounds like a loon. A one year old can't be left with a complete stranger, he's BU. But I guess he would argue that it's daft to have a child in childcare when a parent is available. Could he not have her Monday through Tuesday? Are you ok with your LO going overnight?

I didn't start the mediation process, it was his initiative. He has also offered to pay for it. We only have a very small window for an appointment, as he's only in the UK once a month. So i don't know if you can get free sessions via a waiting list. The google search i came up with showed places that cost £90 per person!!

becausewecan Sat 20-Aug-11 21:32:11

I wouldn't mind paying that if we got this sorted out, it's stressing me out so much. He is now playing the jealousy card, apparently I am stopping contact because he has a new girlfriend. (I'm actually glad he has a new GF to keep him from continually stalking me)
This is despite me offering him contact next week which he has refused as it doesn't fit in with his plans even though it is on his new day off!
I thought Monday to Tuesday would be a good alternative too. Picking her up from nursery about 2/3pm, having her overnight then dropping her back at nursery on the Tuesday. That way I can keep DD's place in nursery and then after 6 months if he still has the same job (highly unlikely given his track record) I can give notice and take her out for his days. But he won't listen to me, he just rants over me.
He doesn't pay a penny towards her so I need to make sure I have reliable childcare for my job as I can't afford to lose it.

It's good your ex is willing to try mediation and pay for it!

notsorted Sat 20-Aug-11 21:59:07

Hi, really glad this thread got started. I posted elsewhere cos I was scared witless of mediation. Ex initiated it, then threatened court so I felt I was being pushed towards mediation before I was ready
Anyway, I finally went to assessment session on my own last week. I found it really helpful to be able to talk quite a lot on my own about the past and to try to explain why given that I was worried about the future (it was supposed to be half an hour but I was there for more than an hour). Tbh my ex had done plenty of rubbish and abusive things before regarding DCs. I felt the mediator was listening to what I was saying.
Her pov was definitely about looking to the future. I think they usually start from premise that you have to agree on something ie wanting the best for you DCs. Next question is how to do that ... And you can express reasons why certain things aren't an option at present.
Bad news is that he cried off joint session so we are back in limboland.
But to answer question. You can have individual assessment meetings and they should give you 10mins alone each at least at start - it's for abuse screening among other things. You can ask for more time on your own or to do shuttle mediation where s/he goes from one room to another telling you what each has said.
And remember it's voluntary. If you don't want to continue you don't have to, if you want a break you can ask for one.

becausewecan Tue 23-Aug-11 12:26:30

Well it seems we are definitley heading down the legal route as he his demanding to have dd 3 days a week every week. Hopefully mediation will be suggested to keep us from court. It seems much more reasonable although I'm not sure my ex will ever compromise sad

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