Putting Children First A Handbook for Separated Parents by Karen and Nick Woodall
Sadly, many of us have relationships that fail. Even sadder, we may not realise that failure is possible before we have taken the greatest step any two people can take together – producing a child.
This book, subtitled A handbook for separated parents is designed to take what is a potentially harmful situation for such children and make it into a positive and enriching one.
The authors have been involved in counselling broken families over many years and run the Centre for Separated Families, which supports parents in developing co-parenting skills and raising healthy and happy children. They have many case histories in the book which have been chosen carefully to illustrate topics and these make very interesting reading.
Each chapter looks at issues from the point of view of different people in separated families and their interrelationships. There are some excellent sections which help to dissect emotions and clarify where problems might lie. At every stage, the authors are keen to stress the importance of the children and their thoughts and feelings.
The book is clearly set out and the chapters logically and thoroughly explore all the issues that might arise before reaching a conclusion with sound advice on each topic. Some of the advice seems a little heavy-handed for my taste – I would never be able to keep and update a Parenting Information Exchange Form, but I suppose it is an idea that might work for some!
I have been a separated parent for many years and thus have arrived at strategies that work for my family and me. This book is really aimed at those in earlier stages of separation and I think it would have been very helpful had I seen it when my daughter’s father and I first split up. There is an extensive index which allows you to cherry pick the parts you
Overall, a helpful book for parents who have just separated and their children – at the end of reading Putting Children First I was pleased I had got quite a lot right! The tone of the book is that separated parenting can be a really positive experience and I am sure it would be for those who follow the advice in these pages.
Putting Children First is published by Piatkus Books, to order a copy from Amazon please click below
Putting Children First: A Handbook for Separated Parents