Courage to Surrender Control

August 21, 2017

As a Collaborative family law attorney, I believe parties in the Collaborative Process must have the courage to surrender control to the process and let things unfold as they will. It is a specific process where the parties do the following: Sign on to the process. Gather information about finances, about children, about shared assets. […]

Cooperation as Litigation Strategy

August 7, 2017

As a litigator preparing for trial, I learned to put myself in the other party’s shoes and imagine their position or arguments in order to be prepared to respond. To know the best angle or see the potential weakness in my own case, I have to be able to see the other side. What happens […]

Conflict with an Open Heart

July 24, 2017

Why do we fight? Conflict frequently occurs when there are unspoken needs hidden behind confrontational attitudes or aggressive behavior. To resolve conflict, no matter how exasperating the disagreement may be, we should approach our opponent with an open heart, filled with compassion. Abandon judgments and blame in exchange for mutual respect. This is in line […]

Age Differences: Emmanuel & Brigitte Macron

July 10, 2017

With France’s election of 39-year-old Emmanuel Macron as its new president, the light shone on relationships between younger men and much older women. President Macron is married to Brigitte, who is 64 and was his teacher when he was younger.  (Check out the New York Times story here.) Relationships between older men and much younger […]

Friends Caught in the Middle

June 26, 2017

A woman called the other day to ask if she handled a situation correctly. A couple she and her husband are friends with are divorcing, and the husband was lying to the wife about being out of town when really, he was hanging out at the bar with this woman’s husband. When the friend found […]

Nonattachment to Outcomes

June 12, 2017

As attorneys in Collaborative practice, our outcome is the clients’. They are in control. Yes, we mind the process, facilitate negotiations, and provide information so clients can make informed decisions. In a court case, the aim is to win, emerge victorious. Not in Collaborative. Collaborative divorce law hinges on achieving a win-win for both parties, […]

Pomp & Circumstance

May 29, 2017

I read many things on a daily basis for inspiration – legal precedents and news, spiritual texts, daily emails with yogic wisdom. A recent email from OM Times about “Letting yourself be seen” inspired me to think about the ceremonies we engage in to mark times of passage in our lives. Why not create a […]

Neuroscience and Negotiation

May 15, 2017

I attended a recent workshop for family law attorneys in collaborative practice about how our brains work as attorneys and how our clients’ brains are in divorce. It turns out, the science shows that when a person is going through a divorce, their brain goes into the fight or flight reptilian mode. Thus, they’re not […]

Diversity Is Our Strength

May 1, 2017

We are, always, stronger together. The other day, a friend’s teenage son remarked that gender and race are societal constructs. “Pigment is real; race is a classification we developed to categorize people,” he said. Out of the mouths of babes, right? The truth is, people are people, with the same beating heart and blood coursing […]

All the Information

April 17, 2017

We can only negotiate well on behalf of our clients when we know all the facts. (And don’t get me started on “alternative facts.”) In divorce proceedings, settlements and judgments depend on information. What assets to the divorcing partners share? What are those assets worth? How many children? What are the ages of the children? […]