You are currently browsing the monthly archive for October 2008.

Along with several others, I will be appearing in a short, eight minute mini documentary about mothers living apart from their children tonight, 22 October –  BBC 1 TV “Inside Out”, Wednesday,7.30pm. It may be viewed on the internet if you live outside London, for a week.  http://www.bbc.co.uk/insideout/london/

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Last week, The Centre for Separated Families hosted a conference, “Putting Children First”.  About 200 organisations, policy makers and charities who work in the field of supporting separated families, attended.  The conference was opened by two high profile speakers – Stephen Geraghty, Commissioner for Child Maintenance and Anthony Douglas CBE, CEO of Cafcass.  I was very pleased to be there and take part by running a workshop on non resident mothers called ‘Secrets, lies and the loss of lullabies: Exploring the stereotype of mothers living apart from their children’, as well as being part of the panel during a Q & A session.

 

Having done a lot of awareness raising lately, I was struck by the difference in people’s interest in non resident mothers at the conference.  They really wanted to understand what makes the experience of living apart from a child different for women.  Perhaps it’s because many of the delegates work with separating parents and know that there are increasing numbers of women living apart from children.  Whatever the reason, this open curiosity and willingness to understand instead of judge or sensationalise was refreshing.  It gave me hope.  It was heartening to be in an environment where the welfare of children, women and men was of importance – as a co-parenting family unit and as individuals within a family.  It was promising to hear others calling for the normalisation of the status of non resident mothers too, for us to be gender aware.  As separated parents we are very importantly but quite simply mothers and fathers to our children, working together in the ebb and flow of co-parenting, as the needs of our children change.

Sarah’s new self-help book: A Mother Apart

Support for women

Sarah specialises in counselling and training women. She helps non-resident mothers find inner peace by dealing with guilt, distress and other difficult feelings which can be experienced when living apart from their child. Her self-help book, 'A Mother Apart', published by Crown House, is available now. She also supports business women grow in confidence whilst growing their businesses. To find out more, please visit Sarah Hart's website

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