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May 11, 2022 Roundup

Recent family related news included post divorce advice to help people cope and to help people understand why their marriage might have ended. Also in the news was a deep dive into the new role many grandparents have taken on in the wake of Covid; the devastating reality of Surrogacy in light of the Ukrainian War and a look at the world of “fictosexuals.”

The Marriage Lesson That I Learned Too Late Matthew Fray, The Atlantic, April 11, 2022 “The existence of love, trust, respect, and safety in a relationship is often dependent on moments you might write off as petty disagreements…If I had to distill the problems in failed relationships down to one idea, it would be our colossal failure to make the invisible visible, our failure to invest time and effort into developing awareness of what we otherwise might not notice in the busyness of daily life."

As Families Grieve, Grandparents Step Up Paula Span, Photographs by Todd Heisler, The New York Times, April 12, 2022 As many as 200,000 children have lost a parent to Covid-19 in the United States….But with support from surviving family members like grandparents, buttressed as needed by grief counseling or support groups, “most kids will come through OK,” said Deborah Jacobvitz, a child psychologist at the University of Texas at Austin. “They can become healthy adults and thrive.”

Can We Fall Out of Love? Allison Hope, The New York Times, Updated April 22, 2022 It took Mr. Ruiz, the marriage therapist, more than a year to successfully fall out of love. He said it took a combination of a divorce mediator to help detach from his wife more wholly, as well as immersing himself in activities with friends and family. And the help of a therapist. “I thank my individual counselor for reminding me that the breakup of a marriage is a two-way street,” he said. “Both my ex-wife and I are held responsible for what happened.”

This Man Married a Fictional Character. He’d Like You to Hear Him Out. Ben Dooley and Hisako Ueno, The New York Times, Updated April 29, 2022 Akihiko Kondo is one of thousands of people in Japan who have entered into unofficial marriages with fictional characters in recent decades, served by a vast industry aimed at satisfying the every whim of a fervent fan culture. Tens of thousands more around the globe have joined online groups where they discuss their commitment to characters from anime, manga and video games. Mr. Kondo sees himself as part of a growing movement of people who identify as “fictosexuals.” 'It’s a Terrible Thing When a Grown Person Does Not Belong to Herself’ Susan Dominus, The New York Times. Updated May 4, 2022 Ukraine, Russia and Georgia are among the few countries that allow for legal, international surrogacy…Even under the best of circumstances, the arrangement can be fraught. Now, Ukraine’s surrogates are working under the worst of circumstances, forcing everyone involved — agencies, intended parents and surrogates — to make decisions based on imperfect information regarding matters of life and death.

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