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Second Chances: Men, Women and Children a Decade After Divorce [Paperback]

Judith Wallerstein , Sandra Blakeslee
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)

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Second Chances: Men, Women and Children a Decade After Divorce Second Chances: Men, Women and Children a Decade After Divorce 5.0 out of 5 stars (9)
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Book Description

June 12 1996
A ten-year study of sixty middle-class families served as the basis for this book. Twenty-five years after the original breakup, Wallerstein discovers unexpected changes in the children, now mostly adults.

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From Publishers Weekly

This study of 60 white, middle-class families that were tracked since 1971 is the largest such research project ever undertaken. PW called it "a constructive, deeply moving report that offers a unique psychological roadmap of the long-term aftereffects of marital collapse."
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Having worked extensively with families in the midst of divorce, psychoanalyst Wallerstein is uniquely qualified to deal with the impact of divorce on the contemporary family. Basing her book on an authoritative and well-documented study of these families that she conducted over a ten-year period, she focuses on the heavy toll divorce takes on the children of divorcing families. She does an excellent job of giving the reader an inside look at the child's perspective on the loss of the intact family unit, though her title does promise a more positive outcome than she finally delivers. In fact, very few success stories are presented here--and that is the book's greatest weakness. Recommended for public, academic, and research libraries.
- Kim Banks, Columbia Univ. Libs.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A MUST read for all parents considering divorce Sept. 9 2000
By A Customer
I found this book in a second hand shop during the time that my husband and I were considering seperating after an 18 year marriage. I found the book amazenly insightful. I saw the truth in what really happens to children after a divorce and not what the public portrays and "something they will get over." This book made me cry on nearly ever page. I was able to identify with many things, myself as a child of divorce. I did go ahead and get a divorce but this book absolutely changed my life and my actions. My ex husband read the book and we attended classes on how to behave and raise children in THEIR best interests. It has been three years now and even through there have been struggles, I feel I have done the best that a parent can in this situation. My exhusband and I are very amicable and cordial to each other. His child support is never a day late. He calls several times a week because we live in another state. He flies to see the children on spring break and they spend Christmas vacation and summers with him. We never bicker or fight or ever use the children. This book helped us see how parents can fall into patterns of destruction. We are both parents of our two children, and we feel that even though we are divorced we still need to co-parent. We discuss their future and make plans together for them. We owe this to our children. Our children have the right to two loving parents. Because of this book, we have been able to see better ways to raise our children with as little trauma as possible and give them a brighter future. I HIGHLY recommend this book to any couple considering divorce. You OWE it to your children.
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5.0 out of 5 stars I devoured this book!! Oct. 31 1998
By A Customer
The case studies presented are poignantly eye-opening and powerful. Unlike many books which attempt to "sugar coat" divorce as a life transition that one works through (and with time, "gets over and moves on"), this one focuses on the realities--both good and bad.
Reading this book, I rode the emotional roller coaster between hope and despair, anger and compassion, guilt and indignation.
Anyone who truly loves their children needs to read this book and contemplate the possible impact of divorce on THEIR lives before severing a marriage bond--for too long we've dined on rationalizations fed to us by friends, therapists, attorneys, and the media that parents who are unfulfilled in their marriages actually help their kids by divorcing.
This book leaves enough room for readers to draw their own conclusions as it relates to their circumstances, but at the same time, it certainly debunks some of the myths!!!
I would certainly recommend this book as "preventive maintenance" for any marriage--sadly, I didn't find it soon enough to save my own.
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I first read this book in a Sociology class when I was a senior in college. I was particularly interested because my parents had divorced a couple of years earlier. The ten year look at the effect of divorce on all persons involved is very insightful and rigorously researched. Second Chances presented several scenarios of what can occur after divorce. I found one of those scenarios for how children cope after divorce to be true for me. This book will open your eyes about the effects of divorce on both parents and children. If you are or have been involved in a divorce, this book supplies worthwhile and meaningful information that makes the process of divorce and its effects clearer. Kudos to Judith Wallerstein et al for bringing all the data together to present this information.
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5.0 out of 5 stars God Send May 27 2003
By A Customer
I first found this book as part of a Psychology research project.
The research that founded this book has influenced the way that government systems deal with divorcing families across America. It is one of the best resources I can think of for families that are going through divorce. Though the title states a decade after divorce the follow up has gone well beyond this. I have been divorced for 15 years - today I am purchasing a copy for my sister who is getting divorced after 18 years of marraige - This is one of those books that I have loned out and lost and loned out and lost repeatedly - they keep getting passed forward. Well worth the little investment of money and time.
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By A Customer
When I divorced ten years ago,I knew I wanted some advice on the subject of divorce and my daughter. This book was recommended and has made a difference in my life. After reading about the numerous couples and their children,it took away the element of surprise when my daughter began asking questions. The questions about "mommy and daddy being in different houses" and "were you and mommy ever happy." The book also helped when I saw personality changes in my daughter.This book is a must read book for any man who thinks his absence will not have an affect on his chidren,after a divorce or for any woman who contemplates keeping the children away from their father.
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