One of the many things I like about divorce mediation is that a couple can view what it would be like to be divorced without “burning their bridges.” As you know, I like to use homilies! The couple has some idea of their current financial circumstances but if they are not living in the same circumstances they plan to live in when they get divorced, they have not idea of what their future circumstances will be like. I urge the couple to compare current and future finances and parenting and to decide if the “grass will be greener.” With computer programs like FinPlan by Thomson West Publishing and created by Dennis Casty, we can do financial modeling which shows a couple the financial consequences of being divorced. I tell the couple that research shows that it will cost them at least 30% more to live separately than it will cost them to live together. There are more fixed costs for things like the telephone, cable, and insurance to name a few items. The couple can also experiment with a parenting plan, child support, and alimony. Although couples think they will be happier divorced, after doing some of these exercises, they often decide to try harder to save their marriage. If they don’t save their marriage, at least they go into the divorce with a more realistic picture of what it will be like.
As always, you can post a comment about this blog, Divorce Mediation, or Tucson Arizona by following the directions at the right in the green column or at the bottom of this website or participate in our Presidential poll located below the directions. WM 4/28/08