• Lesley Friedland and the FamilyKind Team

June 12, 2017



This week’s family-related news included how one divorced couple helped to make their child feel comfortable, thoughts on the importance of aunt’s and uncle’s in a child’s life, a personal account of one couple’s journey of understanding one another, a father’s account of his struggle of separating his feelings about his son’s participation in sports and understanding what his son needs, a touching look at lesbian parents and their child, who does not want to be labeled, trying to understand and support each other, research confirming that interracial marriage goes a long way in helping whites to empathize and value minorities, experts’ advice on the importance of talking to children about pornography, a look at a new paradigm — do we need a third person in our marriage?, and finally, a poignant account of a Saudi Arabian divorced mother coping with her circumstances.

These Divorced Parents Who Took Their Daughter To Disneyland Are #Goals Kasandra Brabaw, Refinery, May 4, 2017 Divorce is never an easy thing, but it can be especially hard when the couple has a child. While not all parents are able to get over whatever it was that broke them up in order to parent their kid(s) together, it is always nice to see couples who have split being able to come together for their child — especially when the family also includes new stepparents.

The Important Role of Aunts and Uncles in Children’s Lives Monica Leftwich, The Washington Post, May 26, 2017 The role of a loving aunt or uncle in a child’s life should be a cherished one and, more important, a necessary one.…Playing the role of the authoritative but cool, fun-loving aunt or uncle can install more liberated and inventive inspirations in a child alongside the more expected structured and habituated genes from their actual parents.

Making a Marriage Magically Tidy Helen Ellis, The New York Times, June 2, 2017 A year into our marriage, my husband said: “Would you mind keeping the dining room table clean? It’s the first thing I see when I come home.” What I heard was, “I want a divorce.” What I said was, “Do you want a divorce?” “No,” he said. “I just want a clean table.”

Knowing When to Quit David Mc Glynn, The New York Times, June 2, 2017 For a while I thought I was the problem. I was failing my son by not loving his sport enough for the both of us — until the Saturday I took a seat on the bleachers beside another dad… Did youth sports really impart discipline and determination in ways that other activities — like learning Greek, say, or taking long hikes in the backcountry, or painting a fence — could not? How often does a childhood sacrificed on the altar of sports really confer advantages in adult life?

A Mother Tries to Understand Her Daughter’s Gender Identity Denis Guerra & Michel Martin, NPR, June 2, 2017 Molly worried that others would think her parents were unfit, or blame them for who she was. She thought society would have the point of view held by some that “gay parents made gay kids.” Molly wasn’t the only one worried about society’s perception of her family. Her parents worried that despite Molly’s sexual orientation as a lesbian, she did not quite fit into the gender role of “boy” or “girl.”

How Interracial Love Is Saving America Sheryl Cashin, The New York Times, June 3, 2017 Through intimacy across racial lines, a growing class of whites has come to value and empathize with African-Americans and other minorities. They are not dismantling white supremacy so much as chipping away at it…About 17 percent of new marriages and 20 percent of cohabiting relationships are interracial or interethnic. About one-quarter of Americans have a close relative in an interracial marriage. In the most recent Pew Research Center survey, 91 percent of respondents said that interracial marriage was a change for the better or made no difference at all.

The Other Talk Parents Avoid: Pornography Perri Klass, The New York Times, June 5, 2017 Many of us find internet pornography an awkward topic to discuss at all, let alone with our children. But pretty much every expert thinks that it’s an essential conversation parents should have with their children… And it helps to start having these conversations early, so that your children know they can come to you if something upsets them, and you have to make it clear that you won’t be shocked or angry at them.

A Husband for Home; a Wife for Away Claire Dederer, The New York Times, June 9, 2017 The world is divided into two places: home and away. At home, I’m married to my husband, Bruce. Away, I am married to Victoria. She’s my travel wife… There’s a lot of talk about open marriage and polyamory lately, but marriage can be customizable and nontraditional in ways that have nothing whatsoever to do with sex. Marriages can include other spouses who provide other functions. Maybe they need to.

I Left My Son in a Kingdom of Men Manila Al-Sharif, The New York Times, June 9, 2017 Divorce is common in Saudi Arabia… In a divorce, Saudi fathers retain all legal custody of children and all rights for the marital home. They’re granted full custody for girls at age 7 and often for boys at age 9.

To suggest articles for inclusion in the FamilyKind Weekly News Roundup please email us at info@familykind.org.


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