I had a conversation recently with some friends about the old question of whether people are by nature good or evil or somewhere in between. One friend tended to fall into the group of people that think that humans are either good or evil. The other views humankind as somewhere in between.
There are certainly very evil people among us. It’s hard to think or imagine any good wholesome qualities being possessed by a Charles Manson or Ted Bundy. There are certainly very good people who walk this earth. But even the most pure, sinless, selfless among us aren’t infallible.
I tend to view humans as basically good, but capable of making mistakes, capable of lying, and capable of hurting the people closest to them. Practicing family law has given me insight into the deepest secrets that people keep (or try to). I have watched good people lie on the stand, I’ve known good people to commit adultery, and I’ve seen good people reach their limits and boil over.
How I view our humanity guides how I approach my practice. If we focus solely on the mistake, it can certainly be used to define that person. I find that overly simplistic. And certainly, the mistake, the lie, the wrongdoing has some repercussions. But litigation doesn’t need to perpetuate the harm that was created as a result.
We, as family law attorneys at The Manely Firm have a choice about how to approach, view, direct our clients’ family law cases. We choose the high road, the dignified road as long as the opposing party will let us. You, as a party to a family lawsuit, have a choice. Do you act to make matters worse or do you already start down the road toward your brighter day?