Bryony and Tom

Things came to a head when 37 year-old Tom Jarvis moved out of the family home and into his new girlfriend’s flat.  Tom and his wife Bryony, 35, both acknowledged that their relationship was over but arguments about contact with the children escalated to a point where both 7 year-old Declan and Luci-Anne, 5, were clearly being affected by the conflict. 
 
Declan’s teacher had noticed he was being unusually disruptive and sullen at school, whilst Luci-Anne was having difficulty sleeping at night. 
 
As part of his bid to ensure continuing contact with the children, Tom had approached a solicitor and it was she who had suggested mediation at their local NFM service as a possible way ahead.
 
Although Bryony admitted that she had been sceptical about the idea of mediation at first, she and Tom agreed to try it as a means of breaking the deadlock. 
 
Their mediator, Elaine, helped them to understand each other’s position and their children’s needs, and after three meetings they managed to arrive at an amicable solution, which meant Declan and Luci-Anne were able to spend time with both mum and dad. Tom and Bryony also agreed to schedule a review of arrangements for six months later to see how things were going.  
 
“The kids are definitely happier and more settled now that Tom and I aren’t at each other’s throats every time he rings” said Bryony.  “Elaine helped us to get on with making things work on a practical level. To some extent we had to put aside the angry feelings we had towards each other. This wasn’t easy, but we both felt that doing so would be best for the children.”
 
“We are confident that mediation helped us move things on in a way that wouldn’t have really been possible if we had just carried on slugging it out.”  
 
This is a real case study from our trained mediators, though names have been changed to protect identities
 
Next case study: Read about Maria and Levi
 
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