DivorceDivorce

Mediation

Written by Patricia Breen
Directed by Ben Taylor

Robert wakes up in his renovation property and goes to his first mediation appointment with Frances. Their mediator hands them each a binder, and instructs them to fill out financial disclosure forms to divide their assets. When she asks how the kids are taking the news, they admit they haven?t told them.

After a meeting, Frances pulls a coworker aside and asks him to retrieve her financial history with the firm. He asks why, noting payroll will want to know, and she snaps, ?because I?m getting divorced, OK, Brian, OK?? Roping him into an uncomfortably personal conversation, Frances learns her colleague is actually named Ryan.

?I can?t track these numbers, the way you have this laid out, it?s like I?m hemorrhaging money.? - Robert

Robert meets with his accountant, Don, who explains Robert is worth less than nothing because he spent too much money on houses nobody is buying.

That night, Frances and Robert take the kids out to dinner to break the news, and Frances suggests they get ice cream sundaes so they can talk. Robert, anxious about his finances, proposes making dessert at home, befuddling Frances who believes he is avoiding the conversation. As she tries to tell the kids, Robert yammers on about the bill and furiously checks the prices on the menu. Robert goes to throw up in the bathroom and as they leave the restaurant, Frances berates Robert for not holding up his end of the deal.

Frances reads in bed, trying to ignore Julian?s incessant attempts to get in touch with her. He calls the house and leaves a message.

Returning the fitness equipment he impulsively bought when he moved out, Robert is infuriated to learn he cannot get a cash refund and must settle for store credit. He buys an entire display of power bars.

?It ended because it needed to end.? - Frances

Frances meets with Julian the next day, thinking he wants to get back together. She asks him to let her go, but Julian explains he only wants Robert to stop harassing him. He shows her texts and plays her Robert?s angry voicemails.

Driving home, Robert sees a large commercial property for sale which piques his interest. He calls the agent and tours the property, a barren warehouse. Visiting Nick at home, Robert pitches his idea, a ?Fun Space? for kids. Nick tells him he is not interested in investing and Diane affirms the idea is not worthwhile. Robert pulls her aside, but she does not waver. He gets in the car and calls the agent to make an offer.

Still pumped by his decision, Robert goes to the house for the family meeting. Frances tries to ease into the conversation, but Robert steals her thunder and tells the kids frankly, ?Your mother and I are getting a divorce. It?s awful.? The kids tell them they already knew and exit the room.

At a quiet bar, Robert meets with the agent to tell him he?s close to acquiring the funds. As he talks, he questions if the idea is worthwhile, aware he?ll soon owe Frances alimony. The agent tells Robert that's only if he?s the primary breadwinner, which Robert admits, he?s not. The agent laughs when Robert tells him they?re not using lawyers and the next day, Robert fails to show at their mediation appointment. He meets with an attorney instead, categorizing the divorce as possibly ?contentious.?