Help a child in a divorce by reading him or her a story to alleviate fears and show the potential positive side of the separation while addressing the subconscious guilt of being responsible for the parents decision to break up the home.
The Divided Island is a picture book for children aged 4 to 7, an allegory of parental separation designed to address the underlying anxieties of children in the midst of a divorce.
As no families are mentioned in the book, discussing the misadventures of Jonathan enables the child to process his fears without causing the parent to speak directly about the upcoming or recent separation. thus, the child is able to talk about what preoccupies him without risking hurting any parent sensibilities. Yes, children are sensitive to their parents sensitivities and, especially at times of trial, they will either thread lightly or provoke, but will be unable to discuss delicate topics taking only their own side into account, which they should be able to do.
Furthermore, the rupture of Jonathan’s island is due to an earthquake, and earthquake are natural disasters for which no single individual can ever be blamed. That message is ideal to reassure the child, as most children will blame themselves for their parent’s separation, though they are completely innocent.
Picturing Jonathan recreating his own corner in the parted part of the island sends the child the message that no matter what happens, the parent who leaves will ensure continuity of contact and that having two places to live in can be viewed as a bonus, thus providing a comforting view of the separation.
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