Saturday, April 30, 2011

Dr. Strangelove and Mediation

Believe it or not I often refer to a scene in Stanley Kubrick’s 1964 movie “Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb” when I am mediating. It is the scene where Dr. Strangelove’s left fist slams down and his black-gloved mechanical right arm reflexes into an unintentional Nazi salute ('Sieg Heil'). He pulls his right arm back into his lap, fighting off his own, spring-loaded gloved hand with his good arm. I use it to show clients how sometimes people can’t control what they are doing. As always, you can post any comment about this blog or Divorce Mediation, or just Mediation by following the directions at the right in the green column or at the bottom of this website. Learn more about mediation at WM (217) 4/30/11

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Judaism As a Civilization and Mediation

I have been trying to read “Judaism As a Civilization: Toward a Reconstruction of American-Jewish Life” by Mordecai Menahem Kaplan. It is very slow going and I don’t understand a lot but one of the lines in the book captured my imagination. “Obedience to God’s law can give the firmest stability and the most permanent security to human existence.(page 148) It seems to me that in most mediations the parties are seeking stability and security. They are also often seeking superiority. Problem solving which that develops solutions which give the parties stability and security will probably work. As always, you can post any comment about this blog or Divorce Mediation, or just Mediation by following the directions at the right in the green column or at the bottom of this website. Learn more about mediation at WM (212) 3/26/11

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Avoid S.T.E.A.T.s during your divorce

The way you handle the aftermath of divorce is very important, as this story illustrates.

Imagine a child comes home from preschool with her feelings hurt by an interaction with a teacher. Mom asks: ‘What happened?’ The child responds tearfully that the teacher was mean to her.
Mom says: ‘Don’t cry. Here, have a cookie, you’ll feel better.’
For many of us, from an early age we’re taught, often by important figureheads in our lives that feelings can be fixed with food.
Eating the cookie, the child is distracted and forgets about the incident. However there is no completion of the emotional pain caused by the event.
The event and all feelings attached to it have been buried.

One thing to guard against is to ensure you are not avoiding dealing with your emotions by burying yourself in things which either numb the pain or distract you ongoingly. These are called: 

Short Term Emotion Avoidance Tactics

Don’t get me wrong, in the early days of your divorce, the S.T.E.A.T.s are probably the things which help you feel better in each moment. BUT the thing to be aware of is that it’s not feeling better for real – it’s a false sense of security – a false feeling of recovering. It fits into the false healing category.
Short Term Emotion Avoidance Tactics are things you do to avoid feeling the pain or to numb the pain or to take the pain away in the short term. They are often ‘escapism’ type activities where you keep SO focused and ‘busy’ that there is not time to think about how you are feeling or doing. If you fill your life up with lots of S.T.E.A.T.s, your healing will not progress.
The sad thing is that for most people who struggle to get over their divorce, they are engaging in a cycle of feeling the pain – applying a S.T.E.A.T. – feeling the pain – applying a S.T.E.A.T. etc. until over time they feel numb and they think this ‘numbness’ if them healed from their divorce.

 Other S.T.E.A.T.s include:

>>  Food
>>  Alcohol and drugs
>>  Excessive anger towards others
>>  Clubbing or partying
>>  Over-exercising
>>  Fantasy or escapism activities (books, TV, movies)
>>  Isolation
>>  Sex
>>  Shopping/retail therapy
>>  Work and becoming a workaholic
>>  Spending countless hours with your children under the guise of being a good parent but the actual agenda is using your children to help you feel better

The problem with Short Term Emotion Avoidance Tactics is that they are short term. They do not last, and they do not deal with the true emotional issue. S.T.E.A.T.s are distractions that either damage or delay the recovery process.


>> Try to identify at least two examples of short-term relief you have used to displace your feelings. This is not as easy as it appears. It could be your first chance to demonstrate your commitment to total honesty in this recovery process.

Sending you a big hug!

Monday, April 18, 2011

The Rise of Facebook and Divorces / Dissolution of Marriage

Facebook has often been cited in the media for the cause of divorces. A recent article says that Facebook is cited in many divorce proceedings. Social networking sites help us to keep in touch with friends and family, plan social events, and share photos. But there is a downside to all of this connectivity. It could be that the ability to reconnect or flirt with other people causes the breakup, or that it is a sign of the trouble already in the relationship. Because divorce can be costly and emotional, there is a lot of interest in finding ways to reduce the divorce rate. According to the article, not too long ago, the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers issued a press release saying that two thirds of America's divorce lawyers reported that Facebook was the country's top source of online divorce evidence. This doesn’t mean that Facebook is the cause of divorce; instead it means that it’s a good source of evidence. According to the article, it cited that Loyola researchers have found that Facebook can make it much easier for people to reconnect with old flames and find potential new ones. It's easy to find ex-boyfriends or ex-girlfriends on and reconnect with an old flame. If there are any legal questions you may have, I encourage you to, please contact my San Jose Divorce Lawyers office. My San Jose Family Lawyer offices assists many people who are going through family law related issues. We have many Affordable San Jose Divorce Lawyer solutions for many different budgets. We help many individuals through this very chaotic period in their life. Proudly serving the following cities, Fremont, Milpitas, Los Gatos, Cupertino, Mountain View, and Santa Clara.

Helpful Steps When Considering a Divorce / Dissolution

I found a helpful article with the steps to take before divorce. These are tips that are provided by the author of the article. 1. Knowledge is power. Know where you and your spouse has bank accounts, insurance policies, CD accounts, etc., and important documents such as social security cards, passports, birth and stock certificates, pension details, and any other employee benefits. 2. Become a financial sleuth. The article reccomends, obtaining statements and balances for bank accounts. Make duplicate copies of computer files with financial data. Collect as many of your spouse’s pay stubs as possible. 3. Safeguard heirlooms and liquid assets. Make sure your name is recorded on the house deed or apartment lease. Do not stash cash in a safe deposit box. Make sure you revoke any powers of attorney your spouse may have. 4. Open a bank account in your name. Open up a new bank account in your name only with which you can deposit your separate earnings into. 5. Establish credit in your own name. As soon as separation takes place, cancel or report missing jointly held credit cards. Then, set up new accounts in your name only. 6. Pay as many bills as possible. This step is helpful according to the article, so that the couple is not stuck with a large debt burden going into the divorce. 7. Take care of household or car repairs. 8. Attend to your health-care needs. Visit your doctor for a routine checkup and other annual exams while you still have health care coverage through your spouse. 9. Invest in a better work wardrobe. Buy some basics to for job interviews. 10. Stock the pantry. This might sound silly, but if you’re short on money you won't need to spend as much on groceries if you’ve already stocked up. If there are any legal questions you may have, I encourage you to, please contact my San Jose Divorce Lawyers office. My San Jose Family Lawyer offices assists many people who are going through family law related issues. We have many Affordable San Jose Divorce Lawyer solutions for many different budgets. We help many individuals through this very chaotic period in their life. Proudly serving the following cities, Fremont, Milpitas, Los Gatos, Cupertino, Mountain View, and Santa Clara.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Alimony Ale

I love beer and what could be better than mixing my love of beer and mediation. I was shopping for some beer to bring to a friend, spotted the bottle and could not resist buying it. I have not tried it yet but will do a follow up blog when I do. There are lots of beer web sites and iPhone apps. Two had the following to say: say, “Buffalo Bill’s Alimony Ale was originally brewed for a customer going through a divorce. It has gained a reputation as one of the most eccentric brews, from reports in the Wall Street Journal and Newsweek. No longer one of the bitterest beers in America, just one of the best. “
Review from Beer Advocate say, “Here comes an American IPA that has a cool name and label, but a less than over the top aroma, taste, etc. That's not necessarily a bad thing. It is very drinkable, deceivingly so. You might not think you are drinking something as strong as it is, thus getting yourself in trouble with the spouse.

It is pretty well balanced, with a bit of a dark, almost Scottish taste. I would drink it again, but won't go out of my way to get more.
As always, you can post any comment about this blog or Divorce Mediation, or just Mediation by following the directions at the right in the green column or at the bottom of this website. Learn more about mediation at WM(215) 4/16/11

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Boise Divorce Attorney - Boise Family Law Lawyers - Boise Custody Attorneys - Uniform Child Custody

If you have a divorce or custody issue and need to speak to a Boise Divorce Attorney or Custody Attorney or have other Family Law issues, please call (208) 472-2383.

As a Boise Divorce Attorney I often get calls from parents who live out of state and whose children have been moved to Idaho by the other parent.  What if anything can they do to have their custody case heard in the jurisdiction where the child originally resided?  Alternatively, I get calls about people who have an existing child custody order from another jurisdiction who now live in Idaho and want to know what, if anything, they can do to enforce the order in Idaho.

The Idaho Code deals with these two situations with something known as the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act.  Unlike the divorce situation, where you can get a divorce after being in Idaho for 6 weeks, for a custody action the state of Idaho must be the child's home state for at least six months in order to bring a custody action here.  So the way that this applies to the first question is this:  if parent A moves to Idaho and resides here for six months, that parent can bring a custody action in the state of Idaho that will be binding on parent B, unless parent B has already, brought a custody action in the state where they resided as a family.  If there is an emergency situation, such as immediate harm to the child or the child has been abandoned, an Idaho Court can intercede and hear the case prior to 6 months.  If there is no other state that has issued a custody order, the Idaho Court order will stay in effect until a court with more appropriate jurisdiction hears the case.

The second situation deals with modification of an existing order.  If state 1 has issued a custody order and both parent A and parent B no longer live in state 1 and it no longer is the appropriate jurisdiction to bring a custody action, if the child has lived in Idaho for 6 months or longer, an Idaho Court can modify an existing decree from the original state that will be binding on both parents.

The Uniform Child Custody Act can cause some minor complications when it comes to getting a divorce in Idaho if you have just moved here from out of state and you have children.  As mentioned above, you can get a divorce after being here for only 6 weeks.  If you have children in this situation, you can still file for divorce in Idaho, but the custody issues will not be heard.  They will either be heard in the child's home state or you will have to wait 6 months to have them addressed in Idaho.

If you have a divorce or a custody issue, or any other family law issue and need to speak to a Boise Divorce Attorney, please call, (208) 472-2383.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Boise Criminal Lawyers - Boise DUI Attorneys - DUI Stops, Traffic Stops Around Boise

To speak with one of our Boise Criminal Lawyers or Boise DUI Attorneys, please call (208) 472-2383.  We always offer a free consultation.

I don't know if you have noticed, but driving around Boise in the past few weeks I have seen several motorcycle police and patrol cars setting up shop with their speed detectors, pulling people over right and left.

Today's paper explained the plethora of Idaho Law Enforcement on the roads.  Between 6 a.m. Friday morning and 6 a.m. Monday morning Boise Police, Idaho State Police and Ada County Sheriff's Deputies made 34 DUI arrests.  The Statesman makes a rhetorical statement when it says that the Boise Police don't really know why there were so many DUI arrests over the weekend.  Can you say police presence in a police DUI sting?

For the past two weeks there have been so many Boise Police roaming the streets that it isn't hard to believe that there were that many DUI arrests.  Though the paper doesn't say, as a Boise Criminal Lawyer, I wonder how many people were ticketed for speeding or ticketed for other traffic violations during that same period.

People often ask Boise DUI Attorneys or Boise Criminal Lawyers if the Boise Police have a quota to meet for issuing traffic violations.  While the police department denies that a quota system exists, one has to ask why at the end of each quarter there is so much police presence if it isn't for quota purposes.  Another question that both Boise Criminal Lawyers and Boise DUI Attorneys frequently get in conjunction with the question of quotas is, "isn't that entrapment?"

While I don't necessarily think it is fair to lay in wait, it isn't entrapment.  The crime of entrapment has to include getting you to do something that you weren't inclined to do and then catch you doing it.  If no one made you speed or suggested that driving under the influence was a good idea, you have not been entrapped. 

If you were one of the unfortunate 34 who were arrested for DUI or one of the countless others who were sabotaged by police hiding in the grass, or behind corners or buildings, and you need to speak to a Boise DUI Attorney or a Boise Criminal Lawyer, please call (208) 472-2383.

Top tips for how to behave at work whilst you are getting divorced

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Just one of those weeks

Every have one of those moments, days, weeks? You know the kind I’m talking about, one of those times in your life when it seems as though things just aren’t going your way and you can’t stop it. Everyone has felt like this. For me, the most frustrating part is the lack of control I feel in this situation. None of us like to feel like we aren’t the “master of our own destinies”, but in actuality, we cannot control the myriad nuances that occur in our daily lives. Things change and how we feel today won’t be how we feel tomorrow. I guess I take solace in this awareness.

The Freeze, Spring, and Mediation

We had an unusual low temperature of 19 degrees this winter in Tucson. As a result of the freezing temperature pipes burst and many plants may not survive. Even though many plants don’t look healthy, it is hard to tell which will survive. Now it is spring and many of the plants have dead limbs but also peaking out in new places is new growth. It may take a while for the plants to get back to where they were but they survived. This reminds me of people we help with divorce mediation. They have often suffered a severe emotional experience like the freezing temperatures. With our help there is spring, new growth and not only do they survive but they are even better. As always, you can post any comment about this blog or Divorce Mediation, or just Mediation by following the directions at the right in the green column or at the bottom of this website. Learn more about mediation at WM(214) 4/9/11

Are you out of touch with your emotions??

I notice with many of my clients that they are out of touch with their emotions – almost like the divorce has NUMBED them…

To remedy this, BUY A JOURNAL – CALL IT SOMETHING SPECIAL REPRESENTING THE NEW YOU – the you who has healed from the betrayal and who feels positive and amazing about her life…

With all your survival, you have stopped paying attention to how you are feeling and what you are feeling. My sense is you are a bit numb to how you are feeling. I want you to focus on how you are feeling and journal how you are feeling EVERY DAY for 14 days – you will be surprised by the results you will achieve by simply becoming aware of how you feel…

I feel…  (Circle the emotions which are most appropriate – at the end of the day, update the chart to see what other emotions you experienced during the day)


People spend a great deal of time talking about their feelings and about their emotions vs. actually processing them and feeling them. They attend workshops, they visit therapists, and they describe how they feel about it.  They talk and talk about their feelings but they don’t feel their feelings.  They intellectualize and analyze their feelings without feeling them.

To avoid this, ACKNOWLEDGE your emotions and your right to them. This is the beginning… The Naked Divorce program also has a solid structure for how to handle your emotions – watch this space!

Sending you a big hug!

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Boise Criminal Lawyer - Idaho Underage Drinking, Possession and Providing Alcohol to a Minor

Boise Criminal Lawyer, call (208) 472-2383 for a free consultation - Idaho Criminal Defense.

Recently the Boise Police set up a sting to catch businesses and individuals selling alcohol to minors.  The Boise Police were fairly successful in the attempts to stop the provision of alcohol to under age individuals.

After the sting, I got lots of calls asking what the penalty was for this type of crime.  Criminal attorneys see these types of crime all the time and they know that there are actually different charges involved and different penalties depending upon who is charged.

Firstly, if an individual provides or sells alcohol to a minor the penalty for a first time charge is between $500-$1000 fine and up to 1 year in jail.  For a second time offense the individual charged will be fined between $1000-$2000 and can receive up to a year in jail.

The next type of crime that I often see as a Boise Criminal Lawyer is the penalty that is placed upon a business.  This is an administrative crime.  The penalty as to the business, whether it is a small business or a large business is a $1,000 fine and a 10 day liquor license suspension.  If there is another charge within three years there is either a 15 day liquor license suspension and a $1,500 fine or a 30 day license suspension.  If the business is charged a third time within 3 years they will receive a 180 day liquor license suspension.

These fines can be and are intended to be harsh.  It is a means to deter the sale of alcohol to minors.  The penalty, however, does not seem to be fair in regard to size of the company.  If a large grocer sells alcohol to a minor, a $1,000 fine and a 10 day liquor license suspension may not cause great harm in regard to their revenue.  If, however, a small business, like a Mom and Pop store has the misfortune to have an employee who fails to ID a customer, that type of license suspension may have a huge impact on their revenue.

Perhaps Idaho should rethink its laws regarding selling alcohol to a minor.  I am not suggesting that it be allowed but perhaps they should adopt a law such as the one that exists in Florida.  Florida requires that the sale of any alcohol be accompanied by proof of age with a valid ID.  If you cannot produce a valid ID then you don't get any alcohol.  If the minor has a fake ID, then it is the minor who is charged and penalized for having a fake ID.

If you need to speak with a Boise Criminal Lawyer, please call (208) 472-2383.  We always offer a free initial consultation.

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Boise Divorce Attorney - Idaho Family Law Lawyers - Custody Issues in Idaho

To speak to Boise Divorce Attorney or to one of our Idaho Family Law Lawyers, please call (208) 472-2383 for a free consultation.

As a Boise Divorce Attorney one of the biggest issues I get calls about, aside from divorce is custody.  People are very concerned about getting custody of their children, and rightly so.  There is no magic formula but there are very specific criteria that judges in Idaho look at to determine what is in the best interest of the children.

The Idaho Domestic relations statute outlines how custody should be determined.    These include the wishes of the parents and the children, the stability and character of the parents, continuity as to school and neighborhood and the status quo.  By status quo I mean who has historically been the primary care taker of the child and who has historically been the one providing the day to day care for the child.

It used to be in Ada County that the Idaho judges would order a home study before any custody determination was made.  The lawyers would agree on who would do the study and the parties would split the cost equally.  It is rare that judges in Ada County do that any more.  Now they rely more on the factors outlined in the Idaho Code and upon evidence and testimony presented by the Boise Custody Attorneys.  That is not to say that home studies no longer exist.  Other counties, such as Canyon County still rely on them to help judges make a custody decision.

If you have a divorce or custody issue and need to speak to a Boise Divorce Attorney, please call (208) 472-2383

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Boise Divorce Attorney - Boise Family Law Lawyers - Divorce, Custody, Boise, Idaho

Boise Divorce Attorney, Custody Lawyer, Idaho Family Law Lawyers, Attorneys, divorce, custody, visitation, child support and modification call (208) 472-2383.

Having practiced law as a Boise Divorce Attorney for nearly 18 years, I have often marveled at the twists and turns divorce and custody battles take.  You just never know.  Occasionally, a Boise divorce attorney can peg which cases will settle or a custody lawyer will nail the custody and visitation schedule on the head making everyone happy, but that generally is not the case.

Every divorce or custody dispute has a life of its own.  In some divorce cases, the parties, through their divorce attorneys, fight over every last piece of property, categorizing and re-categorizing, off-setting and balancing.  In some custody cases, the custody lawyers struggle to find the balance that each party is looking for.

As a Boise Divorce Attorney I have had cases where in the beginning they looked like a stipulation would work for the parties, saving each side money, only to rapidly deteriorate into a full on custody or divorce battle.  Likewise, as a Boise Divorce Attorney I have had cases where in the beginning I thought that we were in for the long haul, that no one would agree and that no one would settle on what was in the best interest of the child, only to have these cases negotiated and settled in record time.

My point in telling you this is that every Boise Divorce Attorney is asked at the beginning of a divorce or custody modification how long it will take to get the divorce or the modification.  And, you know what?  You just never know.  You can guess and speculate, but you just never know. Statistics give a a glimpse at how long.  The average time to complete a divorce in Ada County is nearly 230 days.  In Canyon County the average time is 58 days.

If you need to speak to a Boise Divorce Attorney or an
Idaho Custody Lawyer, please call (208) 472-2383

Boise Criminal Lawyers - Idaho DUI Charge Against Out of State Residents - What Can You Do

As a Boise Criminal Lawyer I get calls with the following scenario.  Joe Q. Public happened to be in Boise or in Idaho for the weekend to visit friends.  He had a great time but ended up drinking too much and got pulled over for a DUI.  The calls are often similar.  They need to talk to a Boise Criminal Attorney because they have no plans on ever returning to Boise and they can't take time off from work to fly back and forth for a DUI trial.  What can Boise Criminal Lawyers do for them?

Rule 43  of the Idaho Criminal Rules allows a defendant charged with a misdemeanor to motion the court, through a criminal attorney and ask to be excused from personally appearing for any stage of the proceedings against them.  The defendant must sign an affidavit explaining the situation and fully authorize their criminal lawyer to make all decisions for them, including a guilty plea.

The Rule 43 exception only works if the case is a misdemeanor.  If you are being charged with a third time DUI or an excessive DUI or any other felony you must be present in Idaho for all court appearances.

If you need to speak to a Boise Criminal Lawyer concerning a DUI or any other crime in Idaho, please call (208) 472-2383

Saturday, April 02, 2011

Try these Simple Reframes on your Ex-relationship…

Think about your relationship from different points of view:
  1. What are the generalisations you have made about yourself and your husband?
  2. Now think of someone you admire (friend, mentor, character from history). Imagine he/ she is watching a movie of this part of your life and step into their shoes to watch it instead. What would their comments be?
  3. Now imagine a completely neutral observer is watching the movie of your life. Step into their shoes and watch it from there – what do you notice about the interaction from this neutral perspective?
  4. Notice the differences  seen from each point of view  – what do you notice?
Do this exercise with another person as well and message me to see what you have noticed…
For more tips and techniques/ exercises and cool stuff, please visit
Sending you a big hug

Expectations in Divorce and Marriage

When mediating I often find that the expectations of each party makes a big difference. Expectations for the marriage and expectations for the divorce. I thought it would be interesting to research it a little more. As always my first step was to google expectation. I found many interesting article but want to share two of them. The first was at The entire article is at
It is easier to quote three significant paragraph.

“The most important factor in determining the outcome in divorce situations is expectations. If expectations are realistic the divorce experience will be less traumatic. On the other hand, fantastic expectations will likely result in great trauma for the entire family unit. To help keep the expectations in a more realistic range, the following concepts should be considered.
Many people tend to forget that the spouse they are divorcing is the same person with whom they wanted to spend the rest of their life. The person they chose was a decent human being then, and that person is still a decent human being even though divorce is imminent.
When a couple get married they are usually in similar emotional states dreaming the same dream. By the time a divorce happens they have taken the same emotional journey, and both have experienced similar amounts of pain. There is a difference, however, in that one very often has felt some pain day after day for a very long period of time, while the other felt the pain in a shortened period of time at the end of the marriage. Both of these people have seen the dream vanish....
To obtain the best outcome of your divorce, it is essential to make decisions based on law and logic, and emphatically not based on emotion. Judges are not primarily concerned with the emotions of the parties. They are not concerned at all with the parties' ideas of fairness. Making decisions about the divorce should be undertaken just as you would make rational decisions about investments. Instead of choosing which stocks or bonds to invest in, you are choosing to invest in legal fees and appraisal fees or to make concessions. Decisions should be based on the amount of return, as well as considerations of the children, and not on the need for revenge or to "win."”
The other article entitled Coping with Client Expectations in Divorce was in by James Kochalka in the February, 1998 Volume LXXII, No.2 Florida Bar Journal at
As always, you can post any comment about this blog or Divorce Mediation, or just Mediation by following the directions at the right in the green column or at the bottom of this website. Learn more about mediation at WM (213) 4/2/11