Divorce is traumatic for anyone involved; it is a decision to turn away from hope, cut ties with a life being built, and a clear choice to walk in a manner different than a family had been accustomed to for years. In the early stages of divorce, children are often just expected to cope and they usually don’t have much choice in how everything plays out: parenting plans, new girlfriends and boyfriends, step parents, new bedrooms, new schools, new routines- this is just a short list of the changes children are exposed to.
Anger is a natural reaction to this trauma for everyone involved. With the changes everyone is experiencing, mom and dad have no space or sometimes e even desire to grieve the trauma which they have just experienced. When anger and grief is not addressed by each parental figure, it offers a poor model for children to replicate in their own emotional lives. A parent’s anger or grief is often either masked or comes out in the form of what this book calls “divorce poison.” The divorce poison affects children in varying degrees. This book offers insight into how to protect your children from divorce poison, bad mouthing or brainwashing that inadvertently comes out of a parent’s mouth following a separation from the one whom they had hoped to be their life partner.
Parent’s bring their children into my office often when a child begins to communicate a great need with their behaviors, often in many forms of acting out. Amidst these negative behaviors conflict between parent and child arises, if a child has experienced divorce between their parents, there is an additional complexity. Sometimes there has been so much bad-mouthing or brainwashing that parental alienation occurs, a child has difficulty holding on to their own opinion and feelings about their alienated mom or dad.
If you have gone through a divorce or separation from your spouse, there have been children involved and you wonder how they are affected, this is an important book to read. Early intervention into these dynamics is helpful. Parents benefit from their own therapeutic work as well as children and families in counseling, the negative effects can be reversed and a child will continue to grow up well-adjusted and emotionally mature, with increased self-confidence and success in their future relationships.