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Smart, Carol, Bren Neale, and Amanda Wade. 2005. “‘Doing’ PostDivorce Childhood.”
-authors did not find any children who could be said to move quietly between their
parents' new relationships or households. They moved noisily, or sadly, or angrily or
joyfully, but not exactly quietly. Moreover, they did not embody the meaning of family.
-children play an active part in restructuring relationships after divorce and in reding the meaning
of family after separation.
Orienteering for children
-With regard to the family, the transformation of traditional family forms gives rise to
pioneering a new social territory and constructing innovative forms of intimate
-'orienteering' without a compass in which individuals find themselves in a new cultural and moral
space and need to devise a new etiquette of kinship.
Dealing with Separation
-At the core of children's and young people's renegotiation of their relationships with
parents after divorce or separation is the experience of absence.
-For other children parental absence was not necessarily absolute even if contact was rare, and this
could give rise to the opportunity of transforming a fairly minimal relationship into something more
children who had two unambiguously loving parents whom they saw regularly had to manage the emotional
and physical transitions between households which can be demanded of children parents. While some grew
accustomed to living in this way and be came used to parting from one or other parent routinely, others
experienced it as a series of separations whose repetition did little to diminish their upsetting impact
Dealing with Parents
-caring is to do with thought, feeling and interpersonal connection as well as with activity (labour),
and arises less from the structural position and kin relationship of the individuals concerned than the
quality of the bond between them and the feelings of commitment which this engenders.
-as a result of the divorce or separation, they no longer took their parents for granted or saw them simply
as an accustomed backdrop to more immediate concerns of their daily lives. Instead, they had become more
consciously aware of their attachment to their parents, perceiving the intimacy that they shared with
them as potentially vulnerable, and therefore as something to which they wanted to give time and commitment
-Most of the strategies for dealing with parents are 'positive' in nature. But sometimes children resorted to
anger and confrontation when they felt that their parents were behaving poorly or without sufficient
sensitivity to their own feelings.
Monitoring and managing the relationship between parents more, others were less enchanted
-Children were very interested in how their parents regarded each other after their separation because
they could feel implicated in or worried by the dislike or hatred one parent might feel towards the other.
They might also experience conflicts of loyalty.
-The children developed a strong sense of diplomacy but also became skilful in managing difficult situations
and their parents' moods. These examples reveal very clearly the emotional complexity of post-divorce
childhood and the extent to which children become fluentnarratives of tact and sensibility.
Dealing with new partners
-re-partnering js a majorevent that prompts children to think about their families in new ways and that
gives rise to a variety of strategies of management and negotiation.
-divorce can alter children’s relationships -seperation distances children from their parents, and they felt they’re more independent of their parents; more autnomy
-The post-divorce family is clearly very much a new terrain for children in which they can actively
negotiate new norms and/or new styles'of relationships with both parents and new partners. They are
facedwith new opportunities (whether welcomed or not) and in process can change themselves and
can challenge previous assumptions about how children and adults should relate. Some children
began to ques tion their parents' attitudes, values and expectations-perhaps before they might
otherwise have done so as a normal part of growing up
-Jn this sense they are clearly engaged in a form of 'orienteering' through a landscape of intimate
-Divorce confronts children with experiences which make them think differently about their family
practices and re-evaluate their relationships. This process gives them the opportunity to take an active,
independent stance and to experience themselves as autonomous persons. Some times reassessing their
families in this way led them to the conclusion that they did not like one parent very much, or it encouraged
them to try to sustain contact with a parent. In these cases children exercised the choice which they felt they had
about their family ties and could increase, reduce or even sever contact. Other children came to place
more value on their parents than they once did. They became attentive to the feelings and circumstances
of other family members and were responsive to opportunities for contributing to the well-being of those
for whom they cared.
-for many, divorce can be said to open up new areas of social experience which can offer (or demand of)
children enhanced independence and autonomy. They may have to manage emotional transitions
between two separate households, get used to travelling long distances to maintain contact with a
parent, adapt to living intimately alongside new adults and children, or adapt to not seeing one parent
-It does not require a divorce for children to become active practitioners of family life who negotiate
individualized relationships with different family members, value their parents or balance caring for
others with their own self-interests. Doing family life in the context of divorce, for some children at least,
will not be substantially different from doing family life in co-residential families. Indeed most
contemporary children may be growing up a little faster in a context where both parents may work
outside the home and where attitudes towards children and parenting are beginning to change.
Sev’er, Aysan. 2011. “Chapter 8: Divorce and Remarriage in Canada
-in Canada, finalization of divorce requires the formal sanction of a legal authority to dissolve the marital
-marriage can be dissolved by divorce or death of the one of the partners
-divorce is different than annulment, in divorce, a legally existing marital union is dissolved, whereas in an
annulment, the marriage is declared null and void (as if it never happened)
History of Divorce in Canada
-divorce process is usually gendered, where men have more rights than women
-high industrialized societies have high divorce rates
-until the late 1960’s, Canada had the lowest rates of divorce among all industrialized nations due the difficulty