Top positive review
197 people found this helpful
Not As Relevant for "Younger" 40-something Moms
on March 12, 2010
I bought this book with a lot of excitement - I am 40 and recently divorced and was excited to find a book geared towards me.
First, the good things - the book is thorough. It is well written and easy to read. The author is a good writer and the book is entertaining. It includes chapters on many different aspects of divorce that women need to consider. Over all, I think it is very good.
But, I did not find the book relevant to my own situation for several reasons.
1. This book is geared specifically towards women who have older or grown children. If you have young children, this book is not really as relevant to your situation. Since many women delay childbearing these days, there are many women in their 40s who still have young children [me included]. They won't find the help they need in this book. This book just really emphasized to me how very different the two situations are - a mother of older children who is abandoned vs a mother of very young children who is abandoned.
2. The author seemed to have had a TON of support from endless patient, loving, devoted friends. She lists a whole bunch of different kinds of "friends" that you are supposed to have to help you through all the different aspects of the divorce. If you are like me and found most of your friends jumping ship the moment your husband ran off, [not out of malice necessarily, but just because they were uncomfortable or did not feel a kinship with you any longer], then you may find this advice as depressing as I did. I think there are a lot of women out there like me who do not have much support at all in coping with their divorce. Those women aren't going to find the support they need in this book either.
3. The author went through a really bad divorce and she was still pretty angry at her Ex, or so it seems from what she wrote. It is completely understandable of course. On the one hand, it makes her someone you can definitely relate to. But on the other hand, I thought the book would have had more value and would have been more helpful if she had been a little farther along in her own recovery process and more beyond her own bitterness. I hope, personally, that one day I will be able to think of my Ex husband without extreme anger and that feeling of sickness at what he's done [I'm not there yet, at all]. I would have appreciated more mentoring on how to get there. The last chapter in the book is called "forgiving the bastard and moving on", but I did not find it helpful. The author admits in that chapter that she herself hasn't managed to forgive her Ex and the chapter falls flat - you can't get good advice on how to do something from someone who has never done it themselves, unfortunately.
4. There was also a subtle "class division" in this book, I felt. As a mother who is flat broke and truly struggling every day just to keep an actual roof over my children's heads, I did not get the sense that the author had really had to deal with any "real" financial hardship at this level - I think she was very well off and while the divorce certainly left her less well off [it always does, doesn't it?], I don't get the sense that she could really relate to what a lot of single mothers go through as far as real poverty and the fear that comes from not knowing how you will provide for your babies. Again, that is no flaw in the author [I'm glad she hasn't been there], but the book does not cover the sort of advice mothers in a less financially stable situation really need.
So, I think if you are an older woman with older children [or no children] and lots of support, this book will most likely be helpful to you. If you are a younger woman with young children, this is probably not the best book for you [check out "Raising Great Kids On Your Own" and "Moving Forward After Divorce" by Frisbie].
I think, honestly, that this book would have been more appropriately titled "Surviving Divorce After 50" because it really is geared over all more towards that age group and beyond.
And I do want to emphasize - this is NOT a bad book by any means. Over all it is a very good book. It is just more relevant to certain women and less relevant to others.