ABOUT THE BOOK – Why Do Families Change? : Our First Talk About Separation and Divorce *
From the Publisher:
Separation and divorce are difficult on the entire family. Often young children blame themselves or are unsure of their place in the family if these events occur. Child psychologist Dr. Jillian Roberts designed the Just Enough series to empower parents/caregivers to start conversations with young ones about difficult or challenging subject matter.
This book is a wonderful resource to help parents and caregivers approach the difficult subjects of separation and divorce (and their impact on the entire family) with young children in a gentle and accessible manner. Children typically blame themselves or are unsure of their place in the family when family troubles arise, and this book helps reassure them that separation/divorce are not their fault. Reassurance is provided that parents will not stop loving the child(ren) throughout the process. Additionally, explanations are provided to help kids understand some of the potential upcoming changes in their family unit may look like. Dr. Roberts encourages children to talk and honestly share their feelings with their parents and extended family It would be a perfect “just in time” book to use with a young child to help explain the confusion of separation and divorce. The difference between the terms ‘separation’ and ‘divorce’ are explained, as are phrases such as ‘common law’, ‘custody’, ‘blended family’, etc. At the back of the book, there is a helpful section that further explores additional questions that children may ask. The beautiful and engaging colour illustrations by Cindy Revell create a picture book quality to the resource that helps with its accessibility for younger kids.
- intended audience is kids – rare to find something like this!
- author is a child psychologist, so points are developmentally and cognitively appropriate
- illustrations are eye-catching and support the text – especially helpful for younger kids
- love the “just a few more questions” section at the end for help with further questions kids may have
- definition of confusing terms extremely helpful
- not much! If I am being picky, the awkward beginning – introducing the concept of animals who mate (without defining ‘mate’) for life – is briefly mentioned and then dropped – makes it potentially confusing for little kids
Why/How Use it with kids:
- use it to help discuss an upsetting event or news event that involves diversity or racism
- extend the book by asking children to relate their own experiences – good and bad
- draw a picture of what acceptance looks like