Voice of the Children in the Mediation Process


In the US the voice of the children has been absent in most divorce cases. Studies show that a majority of children reported that they had no input at all into any of the arrangements directly affecting them that were made by their parents during the separation process. These children expressed a desire to have more opportunity for their ideas and wishes to be heard. The research shows that in cases where children have provided input both the children and their parents are reportedly more likely to be satisfied with the levels of parent contact and parenting schedules.

I am a trained mediator as well as a San Jose child custody and visitation attorney with more than 20 years of experience. Please call the California Law Office of Tammara S. Bloom at 408-412-1430 to schedule an appointment.

Should Your Child Be a Part of the Divorce Mediation?

Children in the Mediation ProcessAs a family law mediator, I am deeply committed to helping the parents and children of separating families. My goal is to increase the ability of children to cope successfully with the stress and disruption of their parents' separation. I provide education and support for parents so that they can effectively communicate with their children about their separation/divorce. To read an article that provides direct, clear advice for parents on how to do this, click here " How to Protect Your Kids." I am experienced in conducting structured child interviews to obtain direct input from children so that the voice of the children can be taken into account when parents are creating or modifying parenting plans.

What do children of separating parents want their parents to know? They want:

  • Parents to know how important each parent is to them
  • To be able to love each parent without parental disapproval or interference
  • Their parents to understand how painful and stressful it is when parents argue in their presence and when a parent's reactions communicate that parent's anger, hatred or disapproval of the other parent
  • To be involved and heard in some way regarding matters that affect them such as parenting schedules or living arrangements that are being developed by their parents or the court
  • More flexibility and they wish that their important adolescent activities would be accommodated by both parents
  • To be able to talk more freely about how the arrangements are working for them, and to make suggestions for change when necessary

Children understand the difference between providing input (having a voice) and making a decision. Children overwhelmingly want their parents or others in authority to make the decisions about custody and schedules, but they want to be able to voluntarily express their views and needs and know that their voices have been heard. Children's whose voices are heard have reported improved contact and better communication with both parents.

San Jose, California, Divorce Mediation Law Firm

Should your child be a part of the divorce mediation? To discuss, make an appointment with an experienced Santa Clara County child custody lawyer. Please call 408-412-1430 or contact me online.