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Why Family Mediation is like Climbing a Mountain

Most of my family mediation clients need a separation agreement and they understand this. They do not always understand all of the decisions and considerations that should be made in order for both spouses to come to an agreement. This is to be expected as most people in this circumstance find themselves in unfamiliar territory.

I often use the analogy of climbing a mountain. The separation agreement that they both need is at the top of the mountain and they both have to reach the summit to get one. My role as a mediator is to be your guide as we all hike up the mountain. Keep in mind some mountains are smaller than others and some are big and steep. Either way the fastest and safest way to the top is to work with a guide that knows all of the trails on the mountain, what route to take depending on the weather and to make sure you have enough food, water and the proper equipment.

Sometimes there is a fire road to the top. This is really the best case scenario. As your guide, if this option is available to you we will use it. Even with no major obstacles to get over it is still uphill the entire way. You may get a blister and feel winded at times and yet with some breaks, food and water I will get you both to the top pretty quick.

Other times there are no fire roads or even “green” trails to the top. When possible we will stick with the “blue” trails but we may have to cross over some “black diamond” trails and this is when your guide is essential. We may need a bigger team or to pause to do some conditioning training before we set out but we can still get to the top. It just might take longer and being strategic with time and effort is important.

I have guided hundreds of families to the top of a mountain and feel better and stronger for it. Please reach out if you could use some guidance and support during your separation. Ironically, should you need actual help on a mountain I have a pretty terrible sense of direction and yet in the mediation room I have you!


Amy Robertson

Amy Robertson is a sought-after and experienced mediator who has designed and delivered mediation training for mediators and lawyers across Canada on her client-centered approach to family mediation. Amy has successfully mediated over 900 mediations and her approach was developed to minimize the cost and time it takes for her… MORE

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