Children & Divorce

Caught in the Crossfire: Children of Divorce by Debbie Barr. This book helps parents, counselors, and teachers understand what the emotional earthquake of divorce is like. Through careful research and the mouths of children themselves, the author provides a compassionate and searching look at what divorce really means to children and how we can help them through the trauma. 
     This book contains 21 chapters which are divided into the following five parts: When the Bough Breaks, How Children Respond to Divorce, Tell Me Where It Hurts, Family Ties, and Healing Propositions. It concludes with a read-aloud story section containing four short stories, designed to be read aloud to young children, that communicate questions that can be used as teaching aids and also as a means for discovering how a child is feeling. 
    From Zondervan, this 342 page book was published in 1986 and sold for $9.95 (trade).
Child Custody by Janice & Kenneth Dimick. This book, written by a husband-wife set of marriage and family therapists, is subtitled, Achieving a Parenting Partnership. As the preface says, the book "was written as a guide to both fathers and mothers involved in the divorcing process in hope of ensuring a happier and healthier life for all members of the divorcing family."  It offers many positive and practical thoughts and suggestions for all the major issues surrounding divorce. 
    Ten chapter titles are: A Wake-up Call to Fathers and Mothers of Divorce, The News about Divorce, Divorce American Style, A Better Way, "Letting Go," Communication, Balancing the Power, The Parenting Partner Contract, Making Your House Your Children's Other Home and The Road Ahead. 
    From Resource Publications (San Jose, CA 888-273-7782) in 2002, this 136-page book sells for $21.95 (trade).
Children & Divorce by Archibald D. Hart. The purpose of this book, according to the preface, is "to provide help for parents (and other concerned adults...) in minimizing the damaging effects of divorce on children." Hart has written this book to give divorcing parents an idea of what reactions they can expect their children to have and how they can help such children cope with the disruption divorce almost inevitably brings to their lives.
    The author offers insights and authoritative guidance on subjects such as: What it's like to be a "divorced" child, how to recognize and handle depression in a child whose parents are divorced, how to nurture a healthy sense of self-esteem, how to handle relations with an ex-spouse, how to deal with the special problems and questions the children of Christian divorced parents may have. 
     From Word in 1982, this 157 page book sold for $8.95 (hard).

Children, Divorce and the Church by Douglas Adams. This book describes the needs of adolescents and children who are the victims of traumatic divorce and shows pastoral counselors how they can better identify the needs of these children. It tells clergy, parents, and friends ways they can use their positions to make a difference in the lives of these young people by offering them support and giving them hope for the future. 
    Published in 1992 by Thomas Nelson, this 119-page book sold for $10.95 (trade). 

Children of Divorce by Debbie Barr. Re-released in 1992. See review under it's former title: Caught in the Crossfire
Divorce and the Children by H. S. Vigenveno and Anne Claire. The authors provide a practical blend of biblical truth and practical help. It is the result of over 100 interviews with children ages 6 to 20, of divorced parents. They share with you some of their hurts, frustrations, wisdom, and wry humor. It also lets you hear from parents who are keeping their families going after the divorce.
    From Regal books in 1979, this 179 pages sold for $3.25 (trade).
The Divorce Helpbook for Kids by Cynthia MacGregor. In this book the author steers youngsters through what can seem like a minefield of changes triggered by their parent's divorce. She draws upon here own experience as a divorced mom to champion the power of a family not just to survive a divorce, but to thrive after it. This is not just a book about divorce but it's a book about life after divorce, too…dealing with visitation and custody and straddling two households…making it all work. 
    Some of the ten chapter titles include: Things are Different at Home Now, Why Can't My Parents Stay Married?, What's Going to Happen Now?, Visiting Your Dad or Mom, Staying "Close" to Far-Away Parents, Parents Are Human, Too, and Important Stuff to Remember.  Plus, the book contains some additional sections dealing with Bill of Rights for Children Whose Parents Are Divorced, A Note to Parents, and a Glossary to explain what all those big words mean. 
    From Impact Publishers (Atascadero, CA) in 2001, this 133-page book sells for $12.95 (trade).

The Divorce Helpbook for Teens 
by Cynthia MacGregor. The author speaks to teens on a candid, personal level, offering warmth and solid advice. The book is filled with realistic vignettes, straight answers, and practical strategies for adjusting to life changes after the divorce of one’s parents. This book provides tools for coping with stress, anger, depression, and learning to relate to Mom and Dad in their new, separate lives. 

Some of the ten chapter titles include: It’s Not About You---It Just Feels Like It Is, How Did We Get Into this Mess, Your Comfort Zone, A Life Full of Changes, Parent Time: Custody & Visits, Parents at a Distance, Unfair Tactics, and A Time of Turmoil. Each chapter ends with Points to Remember, a summary.

Published in 2004 by Impact Publishers (Atascadero, CA), this 134-page book sells for $13.95 (trade cover).

Divorce Is...A Kid's Coloring Book
 by Dr. Ken Magid and Walt Schreibman. Written by two psychologists, this book was prepared for the one million children per year whose parents divorce. The authors have taken the top 25 problem questions for children of divorce and paired them with 25 answers. The illustrations and the content of the book, which is also helpful for adults, are designed to help bring out what a child is feeling about their parent's divorce. The workbook aspect encourages dialogue and stimulates communication which is a key in helping children adjust to divorce.
     Published by Pelican Publishing Co., it sold for $4.95, (1980). 

Divorce Recovery for Teenagers by Stephen Murray and Randy Smith. Murray, a youth worker, and Smith, a family therapist, have been doing divorce recovery workshops for teenagers for almost a decade. They have developed a means to help kids recover, heal, and grow through the dissolution of their families. This book has been born out of the experiences of those workshops. The book is a complete step-by-step Divorce Recovery Workshop that can be put into use by all churches. It offers complete outlines for every session; guidelines on recruiting, training, and keeping staff; tips on how to attract the kids you really want to come; even instructions on what snacks to have on hand. It is even arranged in four different formats to meet different time-frames: as three weekly sessions, as a one-day workshop, as a Friday night-Saturday seminar, and as a full weekend retreat. 
     Section One provides five chapters that deal with The Impact of Divorce on Teenagers. These chapters offer lots of helpful background information on how divorce impacts teenagers. Section Two gives the nuts and bolts of doing the workshop: the lecture outlines, the forms and letters, the different formats, and even appropriate mixers to break the ice. 
     From Zondervan in 1990, this 155 page workbook sold for $11.95 (trade). 

God Can Heal My Owies/Hurts by Barbara Dycus. The author has written a series of workbooks designed to help children recover from divorce. The first was entitled, God Can Heal My Hurts and is for those aged 7-12. Each has an accompanying teacher's manual to help the parent or leader. 
     In these books the author helps children turn negative feelings into positive ones, stressing the love of their parents and the Lord. The following emotions are dealt with: grief, guilt, rejections, anger, and depression. 
     The easy, activity--oriented lessons are beautifully illustrated with the Bible stories centering on the lives of single parents and their children. 
     The student's manuals sold for $5.95 and the teacher's manual $11.95. For more information, contact Calvary Church, Jim and Barbara Dycus, 1199 Clay St., Winter Park, FL 32739. 

Healing the Hurt: Help for Teenagers Whose Parents Are Divorced by Mildred Tickfer. This book is for teenagers whose parents are divorced. The author, a nurse and experienced youth worker, addresses all the painful kinds of things that can happen when mom and dad decide to "split." Teenagers will be helped to turn their hurt into understanding, and understanding into coping. They will see divorce as something their parents decided, not something their children caused. "Divorce hurts, and you know it," says Tickfer, "but there is healing because there is God." 
     Some of the chapter titles include: Confusion: I Don't Know What to Do, Betrayal: How Could They...?, Doubt and Fear: Could They Stop Loving Me?, Grief: Mourning the Loss, and Living: Let's Get On With It. 
     This 93 page book is another 1984 release from Baker and sold for $4.50 (pb). 

Helping Children of Divorce by Neal C. Buchanan and Eugene Chamberlain. This book was born out of the experiences the authors had and the material they developed as they were invited to give a seminar for elementary-age children whose parents were in the process of divorcing. This book is for any adult concerned about what is happening in American families where a divorce is involved and for persons who care deeply about the children who are caught in the resulting trauma. The authors deliberately avoided the moral, doctrinal and theological aspects of divorce. Their concern was with the fact of divorce and with the children whose lives are thereby affected. 
     The book gives solid data about the divorce picture in American today. It also offers some insights into the problems of divorce, provides a sounding board for ideas, and will probably stimulate the reader to deeper insights and fresh ideas about how you personally can help children of divorce. 
     The chapter titles are: The Child of a Broken Home, Parents of the Child from a Broken Home, Significant Others, Understanding Children's Behavior, Managing Children's Behavior, and Professional Children's Workers in Church Settings. The book concludes with a valuable appendix of resources including material for use in your own seminar presentations. 
     This book was a 1981 release from Broadman Press and sold for $6.95 (hard), 154 pages. 

Helping Your Kids Survive Your Divorce by Thomas A. Whiteman, Ph. D. This book offers hope, help and understanding into the way children think and feel during the most difficult time in a families life. The book deals with issues like anger and denial, while carrying a message of hope for brighter futures. Counselors will find new ways to reach their young clients and parents of newly blended families will learn how to help their children accept the changes.
Some of the 10 chapter titles include: Through the Eyes of a Child, Typical Response, The Initial Phase, The Acceptance Phase, Long-Term Effects, Breaking the News, Restructuring the Family, and Single Parenting. Each chapter ends with a summary to wrap up the main points of the author.
Spire Edition published in 2006 by Fleming H Revell (div. of Baker Publishing Group, Grand Rapids, MI), this 205-page pocket book sold for $5.99 (trade cover).

If My Parents are Getting a Divorce, Why Am I the One Who Hurts? by Jeenie Gordon. The pain of a divorce is compounded when children and teenagers are involved. Despite the deep wounds that divorce leaves behind, the author says that there is hope and healing for its young and battered victims. She shows how teenagers can survive divorce and have meaningful relationships with both separated parents. 
     From Zondervan in 1993, this 140-page book sold for $7.99 (trade). 

Mike's Lonely Summer: A Child's Guide Through Divorce by Carolyn Nystrom. This book is for kids who are living through the divorce of their own parents, or of someone they know. They need answers to their questions: "Is the divorce my fault?" " Will I have to move?" "Will mom and dad stop loving me, too?" The story-form narrative is complemented by 16 boxes of questions and comments to help children--and also parents, teachers, and counselors. 
    Primarily for children 7 to 11 years old, this book was published in 1986 by Lion Publishing. It has 48 pages and sold for $6.95 (cloth). 

My Parent's Got a Divorce compiled by Gary Sprague. This is a book by kids primarily for kids, but it is also a great help to any adult who is a parent of or knows kids from a divorced family. The kids tell how it felt when their parents got a divorce. The common message is that healing does happen. 
     Each of the first five chapters covers a different part of the divorce experience. Each chapter contains actual stories of kids who spoke from their heart. The chapter titles are: How I Felt, My New Life, My New Family, Where Is God?, and My Story. The book also contains a chapter entitled, Letters to God, and an Epilogue entitled, My Three Dads. 
     Published in 1992 by Chariot Books (David C. Cook Co.), this 125-page book sold for $7.99 (trade). 

Now What Do I Do? By Lynn Cassella-Kapusinski. As the subtitle says, this book is “AGuide to Help Teenagers with Their Parents’ Separation and Divorce.” This book helps teens confront and define their losses, guiding them through their parents’ separation or divorce, whether the breakup is recent or years in the past. It helps teens remove feelings of guilt, know the steps to emotional recovery, improve communication with parents, reexamine family ties, avoid the parental war zone, deal with anger, find comfort in faith and friends, and learn to forgive.
    Some of the ten chapter titles are: Blame: Whose Fault Is It Anyway?, If I Ignore the Problem, Will it Go Away?, Will I Ever Have One Again? and, God: Where Are You When I Need You? Most chapters have work charts, checklists and/or fill in the blanks to prompt further reflection.
    From ACTA Publications (
Skokie, IL) in 2006, this 174-page book sold for $9.95 (trade cover.)

Our Family Got a Divorce by Carolyn Phillips, is based on the experiences shared by Carolyn and her two children as they worked their way through the shock and grief of the divorce to become stronger and better people. This book is written for children (ages 7-11) whose parents are divorced, and for parents, teachers, counselors, relatives, pastors and anyone else touched by divorce. 
     Published in 1979 by Regal Book, this 179 page book sold for $3.50 (trade). 

Our Family is Divorcing by Patricia Polin Johnson and Donna Reilly Williams. This book is part of the Helping Children Who Hurt series by the publisher and is a "Read-aloud book for families experiencing divorce." 
    The major section helps young people to talk about their experience of divorce between their parents. The caregiver section offers guidance to adults for helping children through loss, including discussion questions as well as tips for being a caring presence, respecting the child's boundaries, and allowing the child to grieve. 
    This 74-page book was published in 1996 by Resource Publications (1-888-273-7782) and sold for $11.95 (softcover).
What You Should Know About LIVING WITH ONE PARENT (see under Single Parenting).

When Your Child's Marriage Ends by Mildred Tengbom. This little booklet shows parents how they can help a son or daughter who is divorcing, how they can take of themselves, and how to have a good relationship with their grandchildren. 
    The six chapter titles are: What to Expect, Why Has Our Child's Divorce Hit Us So Hard?, Taking Care of Ourselves, Ways Parents Can Help, Grandparents and Their Grandchildren, and Can Any Good Come out of Divorce? 
    From Augsburg Fortress in 2002, this little 53-page booklet, part of the Difficult Times Series, sells for $4.99 (trade cover).

Will I Ever Feel Good Again by Karen Dockrey. This book is for teenagers who have experienced an overwhelming grief or loss. This book helps them walk through those difficult times and encourages them to respond to their pain using various forms of expression, like journaling. 
     Published by Revell in 1993, this 203-page book sold for $7.99 (trade).

Your Child’s Divorce: What to Expect – What You Can Do by Marsha Temlock. This book takes parents through the emotional, legal and familial process of their children’s divorce. Instead of offering advice on how to repair a son’s or daughter’s marriage, the author provides parents with a friendly guidebook packed with helpful suggestions on how they can be supportive to their divorcing children. Of particular help is the five-stage model of the divorce process for parents: Accepting the News, Rescuing Your Child, Responding to Changes, Stabilizing the Family, and Refocusing and Rebuilding.
The ten chapters are divided into the following three parts: Accepting the Decision, Dealing with Change, and Strengthening Family Bonds. Each chapter concludes with Parental Guideposts or helpful suggestions based on that chapter’s content. Plus, each chapter contains some workbook exercises to further help in understanding the material in that chapter.
   From Impact Publishers (Atascadero, CA) in 2006, this 259-page book sells for $17.95 (trade cover).

Your Kids and Divorce by Thomas A. Whiteman, Ph. D. This book will help you understand the way children think and feel during one of the most difficult times in a family's life. It offers insights into the grieving and recovery process, insights that speak not only to parents but to all who want to help a child devastated by divorce. 
    The book is divided into three sections. Part 1 is designed to help you understand how children of divorce are different from adults who are going through divorce. Part 2 is how children of divorce are different from intact families. And Part 3 provides specific guidelines as to how you can minimize these differences and help your children recover by developing a new and healthy lifestyle. Some of the ten chapter titles include: Through the Eyes of a Child, Why Don't We Think Alike?, Typical Reactions, Long-Term Benefits, Breaking the News, Restructuring the Family and Single Parenting. Each chapter ends with a chapter summary. 
    Originally published in 1992 as Innocent Victims (by Thomas Nelson Publ.), this updated version of 205-pages was published in 2001 by Revell (Division of Baker Book House). It sells for $12.95 (trade).

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