Hi 👋 from ‘Uncle Sarah’

Sep 03, 2022

I’ve been spending some time with my family this Labor Day weekend, and it’s bringing back memories from when I got divorced. My nieces were ages 3 and 7 at the time, and very curious about my situation.

Why would I be moving out from my house? Why won’t they be seeing their uncle? Why is Aunt Sarah so sad? How did this happen?

Dang those are great questions.


I did my best to explain what I knew - that their uncle and I weren’t happy together anymore. We’d be living apart. We wouldn’t be married anymore. They wouldn’t get to see him much. This was hard, but was going to get better. I loved the two of them, and that would never change.

By the time I was done, my 3-year-old niece had already returned to her coloring book, but I could see the 7-year-old deep in thought. My sister, brother-in-law, and I exchanged looks. We sat in silence for a while.

My niece finally looked up and inhaled deeply. “Well,” she sighed, “I guess you’ll have to be Aunt Sarah and Uncle Sarah.”



Divorce affects everyone in some way, even extended family.  And life goes on. Hearts heal and are capable of giving and receiving love again.

And the kids grow up! Now I also have a nephew, and they are shining lights in my life. These three sticky, marker-covered, small humans have been part of my healing process. Someday I will tell them just how much that has meant to me.


Until then, I’ll just keep being their Uncle Sarah.



PS: If you’re a parent facing a divorce, there’s good news. Child psychologist Paul Foxman explained to me when I developed my course Fresh Start, that a child’s health after divorce is predicted not by “the acute stress of conflict at the time of separation, but rather by the ongoing co-parent relationship after the divorce.” The children will be so much more resilient if the parents can put their child at the center - rather than in the middle - of their divorce.



So much more wisdom from the divorce pros in my course Fresh Start ▶️.



🎨 Music Lesson, by Frederic Leighton, 1877, Guildhall Art Gallery.

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