Item description for Generation Ex: Adult Children of Divorce and the Healing of Our Pain by Jen Abbas & Sandra Burr...
One of the hardest truths about divorce is that every split - no matter when it occurs - will have lifelong effects on the children caught in the crossfire. While most people acknowledge our pain during our parents' parting, few of us realize that our most significant insecurities, questions, and doubts may not show up for years, when we seek our own intimate relationships as adults. In fact, millions of adult children of divorce feel lost, displaced, or unwanted years after the ink has dried on their parents' divorce decree. Like them, you may fear abandonment, betrayal, or failure in your own marriage. Despite outward successes, you may doubt your emotional abilities. You may notice that your parents' divorce affects you more each year, not less. You are not alone. Through research, interviews, and personal stories, Generation Ex will help you understand the effect of your parents' divorce on your identity, faith, and relationships, and will give you the tools you need to create a dramatically different legacy.
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Format: Abridged, Audiobook, CD
Studio: Brilliance Audio on CD Lib Ed
Running Time: 180.00 minutes
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 6.02" Width: 6.98" Height: 1.03" Weight: 0.41 lbs.
Release Date Apr 20, 2004
Publisher Brilliance Audio on CD Lib Ed
ISBN 1593558201 ISBN13 9781593558208
Reviews - What do customers think about Generation Ex: Adult Children of Divorce and the Healing of Our Pain?
Great Book! Jul 13, 2007
"Think about it. If you glue two pieces of wood together and then pull them apart, it is impossible to make a clean break. As children, we were the glue that bonded our parents together. When they divorced, they may have thought they made a clean break, but we are the splintered remains of their parting."
Remember the line from a popular Tom Cruise movie, "You had me at hello"? Well Jen Abbas grabbed my attention on the first page with her direct, yet friendly style. She makes no apologies for her topic, the pain it may cause to take a deep look inward, or her Biblical frame of reference.
The quote above is the framework for her thoughts. Whether your experience is one of an amicable parting or one that was very tumultuous, as children we were affected. Now, as adults, how do we process the pain, understand how it has shaped us, collect the "splintered remains" and move forward as healthy, whole people? This is the journey Jen Abbas takes us on.
Writing from her own experience and that of hundreds of other adult children of divorce, Miss Abbas presents concrete areas of dysfunction that can manifest in us as adult children of divorce. But, she doesn't leave us there. Each chapter exposes a new piece of baggage with its "effect" and the "hope" of moving forward without it. The chapters present testimonies of the ways the unhealthy piece of luggage has affected others, the components that make up the general dysfunction, and ultimately the hope we find in realizing that as adults, we can choose how we move forward.
Many books dealing with emotional trials present the issues, illustrate the struggles, offer polite advise, and still leave us feeling somehow immobilized. At the end of each chapter Jen Abbas offers practical tools to help us get unstuck and move forward -- word, reflect, challenge, read.
Word: this is a Bible verse that addresses the struggle outlined in the chapter and that gives hope and Godly counsel.
Reflect: these are a series of questions that, if taken seriously, are tools to help you dig deeper into your own situation and understand your own tendencies.
Challenge: this is an action you can take to promote your forward momentum.
Read: this is a list of other resources dealing with the chapter's topic.
If you've prayed, forgiven and tried to forget and move on but you still feel lonely in a crowd, unsure of yourself, unable to make long-term commitments, Abbas brings the good news that these are probably not character flaws but manifestations of coping behaviors learned through the trauma of your parents divorce/s, and once you understand their origin, you can begin to overcome and move on.
Even if your parents never divorced this book offers keen insights to the dynamics every family experiences and the effects those dynamics can have on each of us as adults.
Anyone who has parents can benefit from the wisdom Jen Abbas presents in this great book. I highly recommend it. (Review as it appeared in the Spring 2007 edition of Christian Family magazine.)
A gift of healing! Oct 19, 2005
A poem, written when the author was 18, starts the book by describing her parents' divorce as resembling an earthquake, rumbling with rage, anger and guilt that have been festering for a long time.
This powerful poem tells you Generation Ex will be a painful ride toward much-needed healing for adult children of divorce.
The author said: When it came to love and my own adult relationships, what I wanted so desperately (love) was what I feared the most. I didn't want to repeat what my parents did.
Abbas wrote the book not to revisit "the divorce," but to give other adult children of divorce permission to admit it hurt and to give us hope so we can choose to begin to heal that hurt.
Written from the Christian perspective, the author tells the lesson God has whispered to her was that she was no longer the victim of her parents' past. She is God's precious child with a future full of promise in her relationships. And so are you! We don't always know why our God allows us to experience pain, but we can be confident that He has a plan.
This message is about deep pain that led to her healing--and by following in her guided footsteps, your healing can begin too. Some of her chapters are: Make Peace; Redefine Our Family Relationships; Find Home for Ourselves; Seek Wholeness; Learn to Trust; Anticipate Our Triggers; Create Our Own Marriage Model; and Choose to Love. The book has four appendixes of "things to do."
Armchair Interviews says: If you have felt any hurt from a parents' divorce, this book is for you. It is a gift waiting for you to open and explore, learn from and work toward healing. Her advice, resources and message are invaluable.
Wonderful!! May 16, 2005
Jen just spoke at my church this morning. I have not read the book yet, though and intend on doing so shortly. Jen spoke about how she dealt with the pain and how her it is important for parents to understand that divorce is not a closed subject. It effects children for years and decades to come. She touched on the subject about how important it is for those children to see healthy marriage models as their own view may be broken and distorted. Jen was a wonderful speaker and her growth as a christian showed as she spoke about her parents divorce at the age of 6 and her parents remarriages. Definently recomended
heartfelt, thorough, easy to read - and impractical Sep 11, 2004
I have specialized in providing professional education and therapy to divorced, courting, and re/wedded couples since 1981. I am (a) 66, (b) a stepgrandson, stepson, and ex-stepfather and stepbrother, (c) an invited Board member of the Stepfamily Association of America, (d) a contributing editor to 'Your Stepfamily Online,' and (e) the author of six personal-growth and family-relations books.
I recommend this book to readers who want to increase their surface awareness of the typical personal impacts of parental divorce in a Christian context. I do not recommend the book for readers who want to reduce the wounds from the low-nurturance childhood that usually precedes legal or psychological parental divorce.
Like most authors focusing on divorce-prevention, recovery, and (re)marriage, Jen Abbas seems unaware of the effects of four vital factors:
1) the origin and impacts of six psychological wounds from childhood (vs. divorce). Most divorced parents and children appear to be significantly wounded - and don't (want to) know it;
2) the origin and impacts of blocked grief in adults and kids, and how to spot and reduce it;
3) typical adults' unawareness of, and/or indifference to, (a) normal personality formation, composition, and function; (b) keys to high-nurturance families and relationships, (c) effective communication skills, and (d) healthy 3-level grief.
In my clinical experience, these factors will combine to ptrrevent most people from following heartfelt advice such as Abbas offers her readers. For example, "learn how to trust" is a legitimate suggestion - and most children of divorce will be unable to *do* that, unless they work at harmonizing the combative, reactive parts of their personality.
For more perspective, these these articles:
Heart-Wrenching And Hopeful Aug 17, 2004
I found that the most powerful parts of this book are about the author's life, including the poem about divorce Jen Abbas wrote at age 18, a letter from her father when she was six, and her heart-breaking memories of her parents' divorce and her mother's and stepdad's breakup. I read this book as a divorced parent--rather than as a child of divorce--and was touched by the author's emotional honesty. I didn't agree with some of the author's all-encompassing generalizations about how children of divorce have trouble forming relationships. However, I think this is an important book for divorced parents as well as children of divorce. Not only does Abbas provide children of divorce with a positive message about the need to move beyond past hurts and embrace the possibility of a happy future. She gives divorced parents great advice about how to treat their children: Don't lean on them emotionally, don't bad-mouth the "other" parent and don't insist your kids spend every vacation visiting all their "houses." Thanks to the author for her bravery and honesty!