One day, as I flipped the TV on, I saw a psychologist addressing a large studio audience and a TV audience of unknown proportions. She was telling them that their children wanted them to be happy, and that if they were not happy with their spouses they should get a divorce... that their children would want them to get a divorce.

As the fun story goes, I am sure this woman told lies about other things too, but none of them, repeat, none of them, could have done as much damage as that one massive lie.

Divorce is one of the things which is most responsible for the monumental destruction of American society as we have always known it. Worse yet, it is very often a precursor to the other destructive factors. A divorced, therefore single, mother or father of a family is very like a football player with a well-made artificial leg; he looks great, but he is so handicapped that he will never play great. It takes two legs to play good football, and it takes two parents to play good family. Does this mean that single parents can never succeed? No, it just means that the job will be difficult beyond comprehension and that our modern societal structure will make it even harder.

Widows and widowers have, in past centuries, usually had an intact family structure as a support system. Many a family has opened home and hearth to a widowed daughter and orphaned grandchildren. Two sets of grandparents and numerous aunts and uncles and cousins have provided love, care, companionship and, especially, identity to orphaned children.

Divorce puts a new and destructive ingredient in this healthy mix. Each parent tends to become the target of great animosity from the family of the other parent. The children are dragged into this venomous mixture and are, too often, deprived of the family of the non-custodial parent.

This brings to mind a couple who have not, throughout the years of their marriage, particularly liked each other. You couldn't say that they hated each other, but there was very little liking there. Now that their children are all grown, the virtue of their staying together has manifested itself in no uncertain terms. The children, raised by two devoted and effective parents, are healthy, happy people. The grandchildren are healthy, happy young people having so obviously benefited from the solid structure of two sets of grandparents and cousins beyond number.

No, children do n0t want their parents to destroy their family. Yes, divorce does harm both children and parents.

No, divorce cannot always be avoided, especially with some TV psychologists promoting it, but should never be implemented until all else has failed, not a pretended failure, a real one.

Healthy, intact families are good and are worth fighting for. In fact, since playing good family is so important, let's work just as hard at it as a football player works at playing good ball.

Until next time,

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