Home Violence and Dispute Decision

Our Seattle attorney explains how to communicate with an abusive spouse or partner

Domestic violence plays a role in far too many marriages. It can take many forms, from outright physical violence to control and intimidation to psychological control and abuse. It also ranges from angry outbursts due to poor self-control to coldly calculated control methods.

Time Magazine recently published an article detailing how domestic violence will continue to increase when Covid lingers. Seattle Divorce Services urges you to stay safe and seek help from everyone you trust.

Communicating with a perpetrator is often difficult and sometimes inevitable

When it comes to cooperative dispute resolution, our Seattle law firm leverages Collaboration and Mediation. In these approaches, it is important that there is a fair balance of power so that both parties feel heard and can negotiate in good faith. Domestic violence is an attempt to upset the balance of power between the couple. It is therefore necessary to determine in advance whether the couple will be successful with a cooperative dispute settlement procedure.

Is it possible to have a peaceful conversation related to domestic violence?

The first question that should be asked is whether the person or persons who commit domestic violence really want to stop. Some people act violently when they get angry or frustrated and then hate each other for doing it. In this case, counseling on addressing the underlying issues, as well as training in anger management and self-control techniques, can help. The key is to want to change. A strong team of staff, including a family therapist, can also help the couple rebalance the power in the sessions together so that both can speak confidently.

On the other hand, when domestic violence is part of a long-term deliberate control tool that is unlikely to be effectively managed in a collaborative process. The offender can pay lip service to the switch while continuing to exercise power behind the scenes to try to control the outcome. In these cases, going to court may be the best and only realistic option.

In cases of domestic violence, the court has a number of instruments at its disposal. It can make injunctions to keep the perpetrator away from the other party, making it harder for him to intimidate and control them. If necessary, any contact about the case can be limited to the lawyers. It can set up a child exchange that takes place in public places and, if necessary, in the presence of approved observers. It can even restrict visits from children to supervised settings.

Protect yourself and your children by meeting with a Seattle family lawyer

When meeting with a Seattle family lawyer, it is a good idea to talk about any form of domestic violence that may be going on. Your lawyer can advise you on the steps to take so that you can regain control of your own life and move forward more safely.

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