A couple was having problems in their marriage, and went to a family court nearby. However, since the couple fought a lot, and both the parties were finding it extremely hard to get through such a rough patch in their lives, the situation was taking an ugly turn.

The wife, was quite close to one of her neighbors, and was often found confiding in her. The neighbor was familiar with the technique of mediation and suggested the same to the wife.

Following is one of the conversations that took place between the wife and her friend:

Wife: I’m really upset, and I feel helpless. I don’t know what to do. The fights are increasing by the day, and now it’s out in the open. It makes me extremely uncomfortable and the court process is a slow one. I feel like these disputes will keep stretching and we’ll never be able to arrive at an arrangement where we can peacefully separate from each other.

Neighbor: I understand your predicament, and I suggest you seek relief in the technique of mediation. I am in touch with a mediator. I know that it is an out of court method of settlement of issues. I suggest you get in touch with her, she will explain you what mediation is all about.

The neighbor gave the wife the mediator’s contact details and the wife got in touch with the mediator.

The mediator welcomed the wife and told her she did good by referring her matter to mediation, since there are a number of pros and ups to it. The mediator explained to the wife the essence of mediation, as the following,

Mediation is a technique of dispute resolution, which forms a part of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). It operates with the help of a mediator, who is akin to a third party. The mediator works in the capacity of a neutral person and helps resolve issues between the parties that seek relief.

Mediation is a cheaper and a much more informal method of solving conflicts between people, than settling the matter at court. It is very different from how issues are taken up in court, as there is no advocate or judge, but only an external party. This party, often called the Mediator, is really helpful as they provide a platform to the parties, where they can communicate to each other to their heart’s content and can either make peace or choose to part ways, arrive at a suitable arrangement that pleases the interests of both the parties.

Since it involves only the disputing parties and the mediator, it is a closed affair and the parties need not worry about it not being confidential. Thus, it is especially helpful in matters of divorce or separation, where the parties do not want it to be a public issue. Mediation also ensures that the conflict does not take a serious and harmful state, as both the parties are given ample opportunity to talk it out among themselves. The mediator is always available to listen, and provides useful advice when necessary.

The wife was surprised as she had no idea that such a process existed, and that it was this simple to solve something that seemed to ruin her life.

Months later, the neighbor ran into the wife, who already looked slightly better, and happier in spirit. The wife thanked the neighbor for her guidance. Turned out that the husband and wife were successful in actually reconciling their differences, because of mediation, when the wife had sought mediation to get divorced. All they needed was to talk it out, and not keep it in. The wife was extremely grateful, and could now be found spreading awareness about the art of mediation.

Mediation is an absolutely necessary practice in today’s day and age, as it has the potential to change people’s lives, and reduce their misery. We, at Out of Court, intend to bring about a positive change in people’s lives and thus want to spread awareness about the same.

Mediate, don’t litigate!

Sanjana Hooda