Mediation is about settlement, but settlement is about communication, and that is often based in friction.  Conflict is part of our nature.  Conflict arises when two people have differing opinions, and can be illuminating in the relationship.  As mediators we should be looking to define the conflict, let it be spoken out loud in the room, so it can be addressed.  Often times, it is not as bad once you let the sun shine on it.  People tend to avoid conflict and get averse to talking about a problem when often the problem is the same for both people, just seen differently.