Divorce mediation can be an empowering process for couples who want to resolve their issues amicably without having to go through the traumatic experience of litigation. However, divorcing couples often have to deal with emotional abuse, which can make the mediation process difficult and even seem impossible. Emotional abuse can come in many forms, such as verbal, psychological, and emotional manipulation, and can leave the victim feeling helpless, powerless, and overwhelmed. If you are experiencing emotional abuse in your marriage and are considering mediation, here are some tips to help you empower yourself and overcome emotional abuse during the mediation process.
1. Acknowledge Your Feelings
The first step in dealing with emotional abuse during mediation is to acknowledge your feelings. Emotional abuse can make you doubt yourself, your worth, and your ability to stand up for yourself. It can make you feel like you deserve to be treated badly, and therefore create a sense of guilt for wanting to separate from your partner. It’s essential to recognize that emotional abuse is not your fault, and you deserve to be treated with respect and dignity.
2. Seek Professional Help
Emotional abuse can leave deep scars that may take time to heal. Seeking professional help from a counselor or therapist can help you process your emotions and provide you with the tools you need to overcome negative feelings and thoughts. A therapist can also help you build your self-confidence and self-esteem so that you can be more assertive and confident during mediation.
3. Set Boundaries
Setting boundaries is crucial when dealing with emotional abuse during mediation. Boundaries help you establish clear expectations for how you want to be treated and can prevent your partner from crossing your emotional boundaries. Setting boundaries can be challenging, especially when dealing with emotional abuse, as your partner may try to manipulate or control you. However, it’s essential to stay firm in your boundaries and stick to them.
4. Stay Focused on Your Goals
When going through divorce mediation, it’s essential to stay focused on your goals. Emotional abuse can be distracting and can make you lose sight of what’s important to you. You should have a clear sense of what you want to accomplish during mediation, such as a fair settlement or custody arrangement, and work towards achieving those goals. Focusing on your goals can help you stay motivated during the mediation process and can give you a sense of purpose.
5. Speak Up
One of the most challenging aspects of dealing with emotional abuse during mediation is speaking up. Your partner may try to silence you or make you feel like your feelings don’t matter. It’s important to speak up when you feel uncomfortable, disrespected, or unheard. Try to use “I” statements when communicating your feelings, rather than accusing or blaming your partner. Speaking up can help you establish control in the situation and prevent your partner from continuing to emotionally abuse you.
In conclusion, dealing with emotional abuse during mediation can be challenging, but it’s important to empower yourself and overcome feelings of helplessness and powerlessness. Acknowledging your feelings, seeking professional help, setting boundaries, staying focused on your goals, and speaking up can all help you navigate the mediation process and move towards a positive outcome. Always remember that you deserve to be treated with respect and dignity, and emotional abuse is never acceptable.