The Family Mediation Mattress - Support and Bouncing back


I sometimes think of family mediation as a mattress supporting parents through the difficult challenges of bringing up children when they no longer live together.  The great thing about a mattress is it supports you when you’re down but it can also help you bounce back up again.

The Family Justice system now places family mediation centre stage.  Parents are encouraged to try and resolve their difficulties through mediation rather than apply to the Court.  

The two systems are very different.  Our traditional adversarial Court system sets parents on opposing sides, and demands that they argue their respective positions.  This frequently leads to them making damaging allegations and blaming each other for things that have gone wrong at the very time their children need their parents to work together to support them.

Family mediation is quite different.  It approaches the situation as a problem to be solved.  How the problem arose is only important if it throws light on the ways things can be improved in the future. Both parents need to work out how they can do things better in the future and avoid the damaging mistakes of the past.  Family Mediation is there to help parents do just that, to offer support and a spring board for a better future.

By Nicholas von Benzon

Cheltenham Mediation Services work with families from all parts of Gloucestershire offering a service which supports families through the difficulties associated with separation and divorce.

Call us on 01242 220601 or email