Jennifer Safian. Divorce and family mediator

{4:24 minutes to read} Many couples going through divorce have to make huge efforts to protect their children from their conflict. Unfortunately, once in awhile, the stress is so high that their emotions get the better part of them, and the child gets pulled into their drama.
I worked with a family who unfortunately continued to have financial issues after their divorce. They shared with me a letter that their son sent to them from college, begging them to stop their bitter arguments against each other. As you will see, he was willing to sacrifice his education for a cheaper alternative, just to end their conflict.
Here is the letter:
“Since my education and well-being are the central theme of your bitter back and forth emails I think it is fair and necessary that my voice is heard and respected.
1. These undeniably long emails that cite sections from the divorce agreement are at this point ridiculous. If parent A wants to press legal action against parent B, then both sides lose, the reverse is true as well. Nothing will be solved from this. These matters can be solved in house because as you both know lawyer involvement creates unnecessary stress and will not help pay for my college.
2. I would rather attend a State school and pay for it all myself than to have to be the messenger/ mediator between you two. School is very expensive and I understand how difficult it will be to pay tuition once the money that was put aside for me is out. It is because of this that i am willing to A. Change schools B. Take loans C. Earn money through a Work Study program that will help pay for tuition. I would rather do any of those three options than to read another email in which you chastise each other about ME. I can handle things myself. Both of your inabilities to find a reasonable solution creates nothing but stress and anger for everyone involved especially me because I am left with two parents arguing about MY education and I am left helpless except to try and mediate. This is why i am offering to sacrifice the school where I am now (despite loving it here), my time, and my future income because it is annoying and frustrating to be utterly dependent about matters that pertain to me.
I am a genuinely very happy kid, largely because I have a great family and a great group of friends who would take a bullet for me. Because of that, the arguments regarding my finances need to stop. My family is the thing I am most proud of and it is unneeded to have contentious disagreements within it. I do not know of any reasonable solution but there is no need to chastise each other. A solution could be found in a more civil manner. I am not complaining that I have it tough because i know i do not. Many kids would die to be in my position. Yet, because we are all smart and well-rounded people I see no need for childish hostility.”
The letter says it all! Suddenly the child finds himself trying to be a parent and scolding the quarreling people who are supposed to be parents!

Jennifer Safian. Divorce and family mediator
Divorce and Family Mediation
Upper East Side of Manhattan (NYC)
New York, NY
(212) 472-8626

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