That is one potential advantage of mediation, particularly when both spouses can share the costs.
No. Every case is different and someone with no legal training who has experienced one (or more) divorces is not qualified to give legal advice, no matter how helpful the intent.
In every case property distribution and spousal support (alimony) are potential issues. In cases with minor children custody, visitation and child support are also issues.
The law will not force anyone to stay married. The only question is what the terms of the divorce will be.
No. Although you have a perfect right to try, it is impossible for a non-lawyer to navigate the system in a way that optimizes their best interests.