Family Mediation Helps Parenting Teenagers

There are two main types of Family Mediation. One focuses on negotiations when there has been a relationship break down and family split. This type focuses on the financial aspects, living agreements, child access and visitation rights, working towards negotiations that are fair to all parties. It is implimented as an aspect of divorce proceedings before finalisation.

The second type of Family Mediation focuses on reuniting the family when there are conflicts with children, teenagers and parents. The focus is on reducing the tension around issues there are within the family to prevent breakdown. This type is used  as a way of preventing children and teenagers being removed from the family home or becoming homeless. Parenting teenagers is difficult and this type of Family Mediation can also offer alternative skills that enhance parenting.

This article focuses on the second form of Family Mediation discussed.

What is Family Mediation?

Family Mediation is the process where an independent, impartial qualified person acts as a negotiator during discussions held about the issues and concerns. The Mediator will highlight common grounds between everyone, so there is a win/win outcome. The role of the Mediator is to communicate effectively with all parties individually, allowing each person to express difficulties that they are experiencing within the family unit. It is the role of the  Mediator to bring all parties together in joint sessions once the common grounds have been highlighted.  During the joint sessions discussions around the common grounds  are held. The Mediator facilitates the process keeping all parties focused on the topics of identified common ground to produce agreements. These agreements have no legal implications for the parties involved. It acts as prevention of family breakdown before legal Mediation that can occur after there has been a family breakdown.

Family Mediation is a confidential service that works within the boundaries of child protection and the Law.

What can Engaging in Family Mediation achieve?

  • Help improve the communication between parents and teenagers
  • Highlight the importance of praise and giving positive feedback
  • Challenge personal behaviours and attitudes which may contribute to the conflict between parents and teenagers.
  • Provide a better understanding of how teenagers develop
  • Help to cut the challenging behaviours from all parties
  • Improve stress levels within the family home
  • Develop confidence as parenting skills improve
  • Enhance problem solving abilities
  • Produce more co-operative teenagers because they can see the different changes in the way parents communicate
  • Reduce the use of criticism and unrealistic demands
  • Assist with setting effective rules and boundaries that are suitable to the family structure
  • Improve relationships with other family members
  • Give experiences that are inplace for the next flow of teenagers within the family home
  • Reduce the risk of possible offending behaviour from the teenager because there are clear consequences to bad behaviour
  • Help the teenager develop new social and emotional skills that are transmitted socially  to freinds and other peopele

Living with teenagers is a trying testing time for families. Family Mediation can help by providing new communication techniques that are applied during sessions. Therefore the learning is practical and effective because the skills are developed during sessions for all parties.