Review Policy

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Book Review: My Mom's Wedding


Author: Eve Bunting
Illustrated by Lisa Papp
Interest Level: Ages 5-8

From the Book Jacket: A child of divorce, seven-year-old Pinky is torn by feelings of loyalty to her father and affection for the man her mom is about to marry. As she prepares to be the ring bearer for the upcoming wedding. Pinky is both excited and reluctant, but mostly she feels guilty. It's not until she accepts that her parents will never get back together that Pinky understands it's okay to love both her dads. As non-traditional families increasingly become the norm, this positive story will continue to grow in relevance. My Mom's Wedding offers a comforting message and helps children to work out their conflicted emotions about divorce. Parents, too, have something to learn from the amicable kindness that Pinky's mother, father and stepfather show each other.

Why It's On My Bookshelf: "Do you have any books on divorce?" This is a question I get a lot from parents. When I first became an elementary school counselor I had maybe one on my shelf. I did have a book list with lots of recommendations listing divorce bibliotherapy. Did I actually read any of them at the time to see if they were any good? Um no. Eventually, I went and checked out some of the books on my list. I realized I was recommending books I did not like and wouldn't put my counselor stamp of approval on. So over the years, I've accumulated a lot of good books on divorce. And I'm happy to not just hand out my list, but allow parents and children to actually check them out or read them in my office. My Mom's Wedding is a new addition to the list and my shelf. 

A lot of kids at my school will relate to Pinky's story and her feelings. Students often want to talk about and let me know the changes or additions happening to their family. Some of them are excited about the changes but also have a hard time figuring out where their feelings fit between their parents. There is a lot of validation in this story. It ends with Pinky's father attending her mom's wedding and being supportive. Now, not all situations end this happily. However, from a counseling perspective I see it as an opening to talk about optimism, positive perspective, and that it's okay to wish for such peace. Not every child's book on divorce has to mirror the current situation in their life. Look for and use the nuggets of wisdom you find on certain pages.....that's how bibliotherapy should be used. I've put a lot of books back on the shelf because I felt they didn't hit the mark exactly. That's a mistake I don't make anymore. My Mom's Wedding may not be every child's exact story, but lots of good nuggets in it for kids. Very thankful it's in my collection.

Below are a few really good workbooks I use to help kids cope with separation, family changes, and divorce. Art therapy is SO healing. These workbooks give kids a much needed outlet. If you are a counselor, make sure you have these on your shelf. They are so awesome as a communication tool for feelings. (I used to use the Helping Kids Deal With Divorce - The Sandcastles Way Workbooks, but I don't think they publish them anymore. Darn!)

When Mom and Dad Separate
Children Can Learn to Cope With Grief From Divorce
written by Marge Heegaard
to be illustrated by Children



When a Parent Marries Again
Children Can Learn to Cope with Family Change
written by Marge Heegaard
to be illustrated by Children

The Divorce Workbook
A Guide for Kids and Families
written by Sally B Ives
(no image)

A Link to This Book and Others You Might Find Helpful:

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