Mediation for Solving Problems
When the families don’t know how to cope with the problems and the demonstrated behaviour of their adolescent, very stressful situations can occur, including domestic violence. In those cases the parents decide very often to look for help from the medical centres so that their children can visit a therapist. The objective is that in this way they will change their attitude and behaviour, but in some cases it leads to the opposite effect and medical treatment is established with the expectation that the conflicts will be stopped. To expect that a conflict will be satisfactory solved via medicines and without the needed therapies is like to cast a broken leg without treating it and to expect that it will recover well. In fact, conflicts are not avoidable and they are a part of a person’s life and development. In such cases mediation becomes a process of learning and empowerment which not only facilitates the solving of the existing conflicts but also can help people acquire the needed capabilities to solve their future conflicts in an independent way. Through mediation the breaking of the family connections in critical situations could be prevented as well as the overcoming and the sustaining of a new harmony in the family connections could be facilitated. The mere fact that the family as a whole (and not a single member of the family) is defined as an object of intervention could strengthen these connections.
Mediation is a very effective method not only for treating the connections within the family but also in society and in schools. It is incredible how much violence has increased over the last years and the cruelty and lack of empathy is astonishing, also among small children. As a society we should stop blaming each other and let everyone take his part of the responsibility. It is clear that as parents, educators, and professionals we sometimes make mistakes, some of which are unforgivable. Unfortunately the law doesn’t always act adequately and it leaves the most vulnerable without protection.
The task of the mediator is not to give advice. During the process of mediation his personal opinion doesn’t play any role. His position should always be neutral and impartial. The participants need to express, feel, and define their own thoughts and emotions. They have to reach their own conclusions. Therefore, the task of the specialist is to guide the process.
The mind interprets and judges very easily. When people feel themselves trapped they often make some mistakes. Firstly, they think that they are objective and that the truth is on their side. Secondly, they act with frustration, denial, and anger, looking for solutions outside of themselves. Last but not least, they include unnecessary third parties which take a side without offering a solution.
When we are trying to be objective, impartial, and neutral we should be in a state of peace and calm. It is proved that the body and the brain get into action mode easier than in a relaxed state. What is the reason behind? Every stimuli evokes an automatic and immediate reaction through the already developed reflexes, while to become relaxed we need time, techniques, and a certain level of consciousness. A tormented and poisoned with stress and frustration brain starts to produce catastrophic images, evokes blockages, and doesn’t lead to positive solutions of the situations. During the childhood and the teenage hood at home and at school we receive information which is mostly based on what we shouldn’t do rather than what we are capable of. As a result, we lack techniques, we have an enormous amount of limitations, and we are completely lost in the moments when we look for solutions.
ONE OF THE OBJECTIVES OF THE MEDIATION IS TO CHANGE THE PERSPECTIVE, TO TRANSFORM THE STORIES INTO POSITIVE ONES, TO MODIFY THE MEANING OF THE EXPERIENCES, TO HELP THE PARTICIPANTS TO REALISE THE CONSEQUENCES OF THEIR OWN BEHAVIOUR AND DECISIONS, AND TO GIVE THEM THE CHANCE TO CHOOSE.
It is very important to draw a line between the person and the problem. Neither you, nor I am the conflict, we are part of it. It is not the same to say “I am bad.” and “What I did is bad.”. When a person realizes the consequences from his own thoughts and actions, he has the power to make changes. In this case, an attitude of defence, justification, or attack, where everyone feels a victim and takes the other one for the aggressor, will transform into a conscious choice through which everyone creates the circumstances. While we try to find a solution, each of us grows through the other one and his own findings.
The mediator is an example of a dialogue, respect, neutrality, and humanity. He teaches the participants to be more open and positive in their relationships and to respect the differences between them. The conflict is an opportunity for personal growth and learning.
When we talk about seeing the reality we should take into account that there are as many realities as the number of parties in the conflict. There is no absolute truth, only versions of it.