The mediator must remain strictly impartial in every sense. After the initial assessment meeting, the mediators will want to communicate with you jointly. Emails will always be sent to both people, unless one or both want to keep their email addresses private. It is usually not a good idea to write to the mediators privately (except about safety concerns). Any admin issues can be dealt with by our administrator. This is because private communications by emails can seriously undermine everyone’s sense of impartiality. This is true even if you have both agreed that there might be separate sessions with each of you within the mediation. Separate sessions are different, because they will only ever happen when both of you have given your consent and you will always both know when they are happening and how long they went on for.
The mediator must also remain neutral, and may not favour either of you over the other. The mediator cannot advise either of you what would be ‘best’, although she may, if both of you want to know what she thinks, suggest that there is a possibility that the solution being proposed is outside the parameters that a court might approve or order.
The mediator is not there to tell you what the ‘right’ solution is; she can provide information about possible solutions, and explore with you the implications of those solutions, but must be very careful not to give advice or to make recommendations, because you are the people who must make the decisions.
The mediator will be keen to maintain the focus on what is good for the children, and will also ask both of you to work towards a fair solution, testing suggestions to find out if they are practical, but while doing this, she should make sure that both your views, aims, needs and concerns are given equal weight.