- Hardcover: 1 pages
- Publisher: Tarcher (Feb. 7 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 087477862X
- ISBN-13: 978-0874778625
- Product Dimensions: 16.1 x 2.8 x 23.7 cm
- Shipping Weight: 476 g
- Average Customer Review: 14 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #959,021 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Divorced Dads Hardcover – Feb 7 2002
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From Publishers Weekly
Men who bridle at the stereotype of the "deadbeat dad" with "zipper" problems who vanishes from his children's lives will find consolation in this provocative look at fatherhood in the age of divorce. In an effort to rehabilitate the image of divorced dads and to present them as overwhelmingly responsible and caring parents, Braver, a professor of psychology at Arizona State University, explains how the negative stereotypes have taken hold. Basing his theories on a study he conducted over eight years with 1000 divorcing couples, he argues that faulty research and the need for a villain in divorce cases has fueled a "jeering chorus" of politicians, journalists and sociologists that has transformed bad fatherhood into "an obvious and defenseless scapegoat for the ills of society." Although the U.S. Census Bureau reports that only half of all women receive the child support awarded by the courts, the author contends that this figure is suspect because it doesn't distinguish between divorced fathers and those who've never been married; the latter group, he argues, is less likely to comply with child support. He also contends that many women give erroneous responses when questioned about the money they've received. Braver supports joint custody as being in the child's best interest, but his conviction that children without active fathers join gangs, commit crimes, become pregnant or fail in school?an idea that Braver traces to Patrick Moynihan's now famous 1968 treatise on broken families?is highly debatable. Braver's argument for encouraging dads to get more involved in their families is refreshingly free of chest-thumping rhetoric, but readers with more fluid, less patriarchal notions of family life will find much here to question. Editor, Irene Prokop; agent, Janet Spencer King.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Kirkus Reviews
funded study showing that some divorced fathers really do care about their children. In 1985, Braver (Psychology/Arizona State Univ.) began following more than 1,000 families in Maricopa County, Ariz. (which includes Phoenix), who had filed for divorce but whose marriages were not yet dissolved. His purpose was to put some meat on the bones of the numbers that pointed to divorced dads as abandoning their children financially and emotionally, and to find out why this was happening, if it was. He and his colleagues discovered the numbers were wrong. The Census Bureau figures that had fueled tough new laws (and expensive bureaucracies) to enforce child support were based on interviews only with custodial parents (usually mothers). Then, too, census researchers combined statistics concerning families of divorce with those of never-married single parents to create what Braver calls the myth of deadbeat dads. The author's research demonstrates that the divorced father's unemployment is the most important factor in nonpayment of child support. Myths under attack: the ``disappearing dad,'' who initiates the divorce and then deserts his children; and the widely cited 73 percent drop in standard of living that divorced mothers and children suffer (an alleged error in arithmetic by Harvard researcher Lenore Weitzman). Braver's calculations indicate that post-divorce mothers and fathers share about the same standard of living, at least in the beginning. Although hes not above citing outmoded figures and attitudes himself, Braver does demonstrate that much of the negative view of divorced fathers is dated. The book concludes with suggestions for reform of custody policies and for programs, including extensive counseling and mediation, to either prevent divorce or help both parents minimize its impact on their children. Male martyrdom may be overstated here, but new material suggests that everyone, including fathers, suffers in divorce. -- Copyright ©1998, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
Top customer reviews
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Children need and want both parents EQUALLY. Mom and Dad. Whether they are together or not. Simple & Basic.
Children's "Best Interest" is not served by sole physical custody being "awarded" to the mother and removing the father from the day to day picture of their children's lives. Time for the Adults to stop exploiting Children as a cash-cow "prize to be won" in a "winner-take-all" battle that drains and strains all involved; emotionally, physically, spiritually and financially. In case anyone hasn't noticed - this is a major INDU$TRY in our society these days, (separating fathers from their children and extorting exhorbitant $ from the Dad, providing it tax free to the Mom - who is not held accountable on how it is spent - and oh - BTW - The State gets Federal kickbacks based on how much $ they can extort), that is soley GREED & CONTROL based. It is a poison that needs to be addressed and resolved NOW all across our country. This whole current process is in and of itself ABUSIVE and wrong. Public Policy needs realistic common sense CHANGES to be made quickly & deeply into Public Reality if indeed we want a healthy & happy society moving forward. ABUSE of process and basic common sense for financial gain has got to go!
Parenting ones' children, regardless of your gender, is a basic human fundamental need/right supported by numerous, credible studies and reports, not to mention basic common sense. The Best Parent is BOTH Parents.
If you don't agree, after reading this book, then you must be part of the problem.
"Divorced Dads" misses the mark only once when it concludes that "no real remedies" are available to a court to prevent a custodial parent from wrongfully preventing children from obtaining access to their other parent. A right without a remedy is no right at all. Before looking the other way at this kind of unlawful conduct by a custodial parent the courts had better think harder about remedies that can be effective. The U.S. Government for the first time is starting to spend a tiny amount of "seed" money to explore the question, and individuals like Professor Richard Gardner have offered a host of suggestions to this problem, some of which are being tested by courageous judges. There is no shortage of possible solutions - only an absence of will to buck the prevailing political tide.
If the "Jim Crow" mentality of the Deep South could be overcome despite the determination to maintain "segregation forever", surely our children should not continue to be kept from maintaining relationships with decent fathers because of vindictive and hateful mothers. "Divorced Dads" can help lead the way to change that is long overdue.
"You know, I've heard about your (Dr. Braver's) findings. Our panel was discussing this very issue, of differences between mother's and father's answers, over lunch. And what we concluded was if the mother tells you one thing and the father tells you something else, then the father is a g--damned liar."
Dr. Braver's book should be in the hands of every legislator who purports to conduct an equitable review of the Divorce Industry.
Gerald L. Rowles, Ph.D.
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