During this uncertain time, you may be finding it difficult to communicate with the people who matter most.
If you are going through a separation, divorce or currently co-parent with an ex-partner, you might be finding it extremely difficult to communicate in a productive way.
Many services you might have used to help you communicate or reach agreements might not be available to you now. Finding a new way to handle disagreements will be necessary for your sanity.
Here are some suggestions that might help to patch you through your conflict during the COVID-19 pandemic:
1. Online Mediation
Many Mediators have taken their practices online and can now offer their services to you from a distance. If you have a Mediator you already work with, contacting them to see if there are options for continued service during this time might be a great place to start. You may also want to Google search for Online Dispute Resolution Practitioners. The Alternative Dispute Resolution Institute of Canada might also be able to provide a list of Mediators who offer online services.
2. Online Counselling
Just as many Mediators have taken their practices online, there are many Counsellors who are now providing services online. If you have a Counsellor you are familiar with, contact them to see if they have moved their practice online. You may also want to ask friends and family if they have a recommendation for a Counsellor. Even if you are separated, divorced and/or in a co-parenting situation, Counselling can be extremely helpful for getting on "the same page" as the other person. If the person you are in conflict with is not willing to attend Counselling with you, taking advantage of Counselling for yourself can be a great first step toward resolving the conflict you are experiencing.
3. Online Arbitration or Adjudication
In some situations you might be past wanting to talk through the conflict you are going through. If that's your situation, you might want someone else to make the decision for you to resolve the conflict you are experiencing. There are Arbitrators and Adjudicators who are still providing services through this pandemic and they might be able to help you. Look to your local Alternative Dispute Resolution Regional Affiliate to receive a list of available Arbitrators.
4. Consider an App
If you are co-parenting with someone you are in conflict with, consider alternative means of communication and scheduling, such as an App. There are free options available as well as more robust subscriptions. Our Family Wizard and WeParent are great options.
5. Conflict Coaching
If you simply cannot get the other person on board with any of these suggestions, just as with Counselling, you could hire a Conflict Coach. A Conflict Coach could work with yourself and the other person or just with you. A Conflict Coach can help you figure out how best to manage the conflict you are experiencing and can work with you to strategize on next steps. Many Conflict Coaches provide online services. If you already know a Conflict Coach, contact them to see if they can help you from a distance. If not, Google Conflict Coaches. Many Mediators also offer Conflict Coaching services, so if you find a Mediator you would like to work with ask them if they also offer this complementary service.
We hope this list helps you consider new ways that you can find a resolution to your dispute. We are offering all of our services online and are happy to schedule a consultation with you using video conferencing. Contact us for rates, availability, and to book your appointment.