Separating couples who face a miserable Valentine’s Day will not be troubling the High Street florist this year … but neither do they need the High Street solicitor to settle their differences, says a leading national family charity.
“Heart-shaped chocolate boxes turn the stomach when you’ve just split up,” says Jane Robey, CEO of National Family Mediation. 
“For separating couples, February 14th isn’t hearts and roses. Instead it can be a bitter reminder of how you feel towards your ex.
“Whilst Valentine’s Day has its traditions, people coming to terms with a break-up won’t be troubling the local florist this year. Neither do they need to beat the ‘traditional’ path to the High Street solicitor to settle money, property and parenting issues after the big split. There are more effective ways to get things sorted and help you quickly move on to the next stage of your lives.”
In family mediation, separating couples work with a trained, professional third party mediator to agree post-separation arrangements. The process does not try to keep couples together but helps them agree settlements that are in the best interests of all involved, especially children.
“Family mediation can help you make long-term plans for the future that take everyone’s interests into account, especially the children, and it’s usually cheaper, quicker and less stressful, ” she adds.
“The traditional solicitor-court room route is likely to see couples still battling it out NEXT Valentines’ Day. Much better to move things on as quickly as you can.
“Many couples think their only option once they’ve decided to separate is to head off to solicitor to prepare for a very expensive court room confrontation in which they can achieve a ‘victory’ over their ex. But families who try mediation usually find it a breath of fresh air. They keep more control of their own destinies, instead of handing it over to courts, having been empowered to chart the way ahead. It’s their future after all."
Anyone wanting to know more about family mediation, or to discuss the options, can call 0300 4000 636. You can find your local non-profit mediator here

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