This matrimonial lawyer, who is himself divorced, was duly impressed with the article about “conscious uncoupling” (“Is ‘Conscious Uncoupling’ a Better Way to Divorce?” March 30). The insight into and reasoning behind Gwyneth Paltrow’s decision to separate from Chris Martin was extremely encouraging. I wish that my own past could have included such an enlightened method of separation. If a breakup is inevitable, then reasonable parties should seemingly want to follow the lead of Robin and Marsha Williams, who used a growing method of alternative dispute resolution to minimize the trauma in and reclaim the power over their lives.
To that end, in 2006, two other Pittsburgh lawyers and I created CLASP, the Collaborative Law Association of Southwestern Pennsylvania, to enable unhappily married couples to “divorce with dignity.” Collaborative divorce is a hybrid means between mediation and litigation to have a very humane way to get your decree while also furthering the likelihood of being successful co-parents and maintaining civilized interactions.
Former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor presciently said, “Courts should be the places where the disputes end after alternative methods of resolving disputes have been considered and tried.” Those people out there looking to emulate Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin and resolve their dispute respectfully should research clasplaw.org and collaborativepractice.org. Collaborative law is an ideal way to avoid the stress, expense, animosity and unpredictability of court, especially when the future of your children is at stake.
JEFFREY L. POLLOCK