The Good Divorce: Keeping Your Family Together When Your Marriage Comes Apart
by Constance Anrons
An early champion of collaborative divorce, Dr. Ahrons offers a hopeful book that takes on the stigma that divorce is always bad for families. Chapters include transcending the myths of divorce, letting go while holding on, forming a limited partnership, aftermath of divorce and pathways to a good divorce. The author writes, “The good divorce is not an oxymoron. A good divorce is one in which both the adults and children emerge at least as emotionally well as they were before the divorce. Because we have been so inundated with negative stories, divorce immediately carries with it a negative association. Even though we have difficulty conjuring up positive images of divorce, the reality is that most people feel their lives improved after their divorces.”
Helping Your Kids Cope with Divorce the Sandcastles Way
by M. Gary Neuman, LMHC
In this practical, 460-page book, Neuman comprehensively covers the many situations parents will encounter: how children experience divorce, understanding the different age groups, when parents fight, when a parent moves away and introducing a significant other. Moreover, the author offers innumerable activities for parent and child that deal with the divorce in an indirect way (often the best way to reach a child): from building a time machine together about the past and future to creating “connecting” conversational cards for the dinner table. Both parents should own this book so they can work together to help their children move forward in a consistent and structured way.
Neuman offers 13 Ways Parents Can Help Children At Every Age:
• Never assume your child knows how much she means to you.
• Spend quality time and quantity time. Kids need both.
• Always speak of the other parent in positive terms.
• Mediate your differences with your ex. Do whatever you can not to fight it out in court.
• Maintain structure
• Invite spirituality into your life.
• Maintain family traditions.
• Become involved in your child’s life. Show interest.
• Find and focus on your child’s wonderful qualities.
• Allow your child to express herself freely.
• Encourage your child’s individuality and social development.
• Take care of yourself.Wake up every morning and ask yourself, What can I do for my child today that will make her smile? Then do it.
Mom’s House, Dad’s House for Kids
by Isolina Riccia, Ph.D
Riccia’s books is a great one to read together as a family. Although the book is geared toward middle school children, all ages can benefit from the book’s caring message and learn simple approaches to deal with complex questions and situations. The book offers a map of what is to come, ideas that encourage structure during the big change and ways for parents to help teach kids about bouncing back and having hope for their future. Dr. Riccia writes, “Separation and divorce are a little like a long road trip. The destination is a new version of normal family life—one that is different from what you knew before but is still right for your family….Eventually things will settle down and you will arrive at your destination. There may be moments when it feels as if your world is coming to an end, but it won’t. However, it is changing.”