Divorce Ministry 4 Kids is now Hope 4 Hurting Kids. To find the article explaining all the details Click Here.
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Do you minister to children of divorce? Are you a DC4K Safekeeper? Do you run a Big “D” Divorce Group for Teens? Are you a children’s minister who works frequently with children of divorce? If you have a heart for children of divorce and separated parents, we have an opportunity for you.
Due to some changes here at Divorce Ministry 4 Kids, we are actively seeking people to write articles for the website. Whether you have a practical tip or theological insights into ministering to children of divorce, we believe you have something to offer the church and to offer children of divorce.
If you are interested in contributing we would love to hear from you. Whether you would like to contribute one article a week, two a month, once a month, the occasional guest post or even less frequently, we would love to talk to you about how you can be a blessing to children of divorce and the community of people who love working with God’s kids and follow this website.
NOTE FROM THE EDITOR: In the area of children of divorce, there are few people who have been as influential as Judith Wallerstein. Her groundbreaking study and work has paved the way for those of us who work with children of divorce. Ms. Wallerstein passed away last week at the age of 90. Though she is now gone, her work and her influence will live on – hopefully sparking others to carry the mantle for children of divorce. One of our regular contributors – Linda Ranson Jacobs – was fortunate enough to interact with Ms. Wallerstein when she was developing the Divorce Care 4 Kids program. In this article she recounts those interactions and reflects on the contribution and legacy of Ms. Wallerstein.
The Work and Influence of Judith Wallerstein
Through her research, reporting and personal understanding and care, Judith Wallerstein probably changed the face of the child of divorce more than anyone in this generation. As many of you know, she began talking to and following 131 children whose parents were all going through a divorce. From her research and communication with those 131 children she wrote three important books.
After the first five years she wrote, “Surviving The Breakup: How Children And Parents Cope With Divorce”. “Second Chances: Men, Women and Children a Decade After Divorce” came after fifteen years and “The Unexpected Legacy of Divorce: A 25 Year Landmark Study” came after her study with the original 131 children after twenty-five years. After those books she complied all of her information from her research and wrote what was to me the most dynamic book of all, “What About the Kids?”
A Poorly Timed Phone Call
When I was developing DC4K (DivorceCare for Kids), I had the privilege of talking to her on the phone. I had wanted to visit with her, but I had been hesitating calling such an important person. My boss at Church Initiative, Steve Grissom, encouraged me to go ahead and give her a call. So, during my research phase in 2002, I finally worked up the nerve to do just that. I had read her books, and I wanted to find out what else I needed to know to develop DC4K and make it an effective program.
I remember I was so nervous dialing her number. Her son answered the phone, and he was very short with me. I asked to speak with Judith Wallerstein. I’m sure my voice was shaky as I said her name. And that’s when I realized my big blunder…it was only seven o’clock on the West coast. YIKES! In my excitement, I had neglected to realize I was in the Eastern Standard time zone and there was a three-hour difference. I apologized profusely and offered to call back later in the day. Evidently by this time Judith had come into the room and asked what was going on. After a brief discussion between her son and her, she came to the phone.
Our First Conversation
What a charming and personable woman she was. I’m sure she probably got dozens of calls from people studying the child of divorce, but probably not at 7:00 in the morning. She was an encourager though and made me promise when I got our program developed I would send her the materials. At that time, she also told me about another book she was writing called “What About the Kids?: Raising Your Children Before, During, and After Divorce” and made me promise to read it as soon as it came out. After that call, and after I got DC4K developed we exchanged emails several times. Continue Reading…