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16 A Gift in Wartime

The Arbiner Institute Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

“So, how was everyone’s evening?” Avi asked with a big smile once the group had seated themselves in the room.

Lou looked around at them and was surprised to discover that he felt at home in the room, as if among friends. Yes, that is what they have become, he thought. Pettis, the fellow vet and clear-minded student. Elizabeth, the high-minded Brit with subtle humor and surprising self-honesty. Ria and Miguel, the oddly matched couple with an ongoing battle over the dishes. Jenny’s quiet and timid parents, Carl and Teri. Even Gwyn, Lou’s blustery counterpart, who had accused Lou of being racist. Lou started chuckling at the realization that he was even glad to see Gwyn.

“Lou, what’s so funny?” Avi asked.

“Oh nothing,” he smiled. “It’s just good to see everyone this morning, that’s all.”

“Even me?” Gwyn asked with a wry smile.

Especially you, Gwyn,” Lou laughed.

In the comfort of the moment it was easy to forget how much had changed since the morning before.

“So how do we get out of the box?” Avi asked rhetorically. “How can our hearts turn from war to peace? That is the question for today.”

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CHAPTER FOURTEEN. Parenthood and HIV/AIDS. An investigation of the INPer based on psychoanalytic and gender theory

Alcira Mariam Alizade Karnac Books ePub

Teresa Lartigue

“ … [C]hildren who are received in a harsh and disagreeable way die easily and willingly. Either they use one of the many proffered organic possibilities for a quick exit, or if they escape this fate, they keep a streak of pessimism and of aversion to life.”

(Ferenczi, 1929, p. 127)

Introduction

The global epidemic of HIV/AIDS has caused the death of some 21.8 million persons, of whom 17.5 million were adults (9 million of them women) and 4.3 million children. A cumulative total of 13.2 million minors throughout the world have been orphaned by AIDS, of whom 10 million are in Latin America (Magis, Bravo, & Rivera, 2000). UNICEF estimates that there are 100,000 infected persons in Mexico. An idea of the importance of this epidemic can be conveyed by the fact that for every minute that passes, ten persons are infected by the human immunodeficiency virus.

Of a sample of 392 pregnant women,2 forty formed the group labelled “HIV/AIDS” since either they or their partner were infected with HIV. In our study using the Life Histories Method (Martinez, 1996), 3 we were able to look into the representational life of these patients.

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CHAPTER SEVEN. Methods of intervention

Margaret Robinson Karnac Books ePub

My clinical and mediation experience seems to indicate that if couples can be persuaded to seek appropriate help early enough during marital or partnership breakdown, then there is more likelihood that they will be able to work on improving their relationship either so that they can stay together, or so that they can separate in the least destructive way for all concerned. One of my concerns about many counselling services is that they focus primarily on the couple, and, unless such services are trained to take a family systemic view, the children’s perspective may be minimized or even ignored at crucial times in the process.

The estimate that 51% of divorced men subsequently regret their divorce (Davis & Murch, 1988) may be significant in that research also indicates that being married is an important factor in the mental health of men, while this is not necessarily so for women. The evidence that many couples do not seem to know where to turn for help for their relationship appears to be borne out by research by the organization One Plus One (MacAllister, 1995). This has led to the appointment of trainers for a scheme called Brief Encounters for informing health service staff about services available for supporting marriage. At present, it is often too late to save the relationship by the time couples seek or are referred for therapeutic help, and too often it appears that it is a matter of chance which family is referred to which agency during the divorce process.

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CHAPTER SIX. Post-divorce parenting

Margaret Robinson Karnac Books ePub

During my years as a mediator, like many others I have become increasingly concerned about the large numbers of children and their fathers who lose touch with one another. As already indicated, approximately half the children whose parents divorce lose touch with their non-residential parent within two years, and these are by no means only those where there has been violence in the family prior to separation. Recent research from the University of Newcastle (Simpson, McCarthy, & Walker, 1995) followed up 91 of the fathers in their original divorce study and found that this loss of contact is more related to social class and income than to the grounds for divorce. Those non-residential fathers who had little or no contact fell into two groups: those who were angry, and those who seemed to be more or less resigned to no contact. For most of the latter, it seemed that a point had been reached where the costs of continuing to try to pursue contact in a hostile climate led them to abandon such claims, perceiving their decision as one that eases suffering for everyone. They experienced a deep and ongoing sense of loss in many areas—loss of control both overtly in terms of power and authority, but also of being unable to pass on their identity to their children. Simpson et al. found that fathers were three times as likely to have lost contact with their daughters as with their sons. A recent comparative study of 99 young men from inner-city families, where in half the cases the father was absent, demonstrated that the unreliability of fathers—rather than their absence—is more damaging to their sons than a failure to maintain any contact (Catherine Hepworth, reported in the Independent, 16 December 1995), although this finding has yet to be confirmed.

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4. Favorite Foods

Peggy Heinkel-Wolfe University of North Texas Press PDF

at the University of Rochester. Even on winter days, the roads and bikeways were often clear and dry enough to ride the three-mile path along the Genesee River all the way to my graduate classes downtown. When the roads were wet or covered with snow, I rode the university’s big blue shuttle bus.

Each day when I got home from school, I opened the door and wheeled the bicycle inside to park it at the bottom of the stairwell. Sam leaned out over the safety gate and looked down at me with a beaming smile. “Mom’s home!” he would exclaim.

“Mom’s home!” Mark would always echo from somewhere else upstairs.

The first time Sam did that, I realized that I had waited a long time for such an expression of love from him. Then I realized I didn’t even know I was waiting for it. The details of the moment flooded my senses: the glow of sunlight oozing from behind him on the landing, the reverberation of his voice in the stairwell, the sparkle of his toothy smile. His affection tumbled down the stairs and welled up in my eyes.

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