Monday, November 07, 2005

the lonely task of reconciling two worlds

When I was in college, I lived with seven other women in various housing arrangements through the years. Of the eight of us, three had divorced parents and the others' parents remain married to this day. (I attribute the fact that we were statistically below the national divorce average to our attendance at a Jesuit university.) Flash forward to the present day: the three women with divorced parents are not married, while all the rest have been espoused for years. Coincidence? I think not. And neither does Elizabeth Marquardt:

Even in a "good divorce," in which parents amicably minimize their conflicts, children of divorce inhabit a more difficult emotional landscape than those in intact families, according to a new survey of 1,500 people ages 18 t0 35.

"All the happy talk about divorce is designed to reassure parents," Elizabeth Marquardt, author of the study, described in her new book, "Between Two Worlds." "But it's not the truth for children. Even a good divorce restructures children's childhoods and leaves them traveling between two distinct worlds. It becomes their job, not their parents', to make sense of those two worlds."

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