POSTDIVORCE PATERNAL DISENGAGEMENT: FAILED MOURNING AND ROLE FUSION

Authors


  • Nehami Baum, PhD, School of Social Work, Bar Ilan University, Israel

concerning this article should be sent to Nehami Baum, PhD, School of Social Work, Bar Ilan University, Ramat Gan 52900, Israel; E-mail:nehami@hotmail.com

Abstract

In this article, I suggest that postdivorce paternal disengagement may be rooted in the father's tendency to link his children and ex-wife as a single entity in consequence of his failure to adequately mourn the loss of his ex-wife and to redefine his paternal role and identity in distinction from his spousal role and identity. I also suggest that the ex-spousal conflict that disengaged fathers often blame for their disengagement is the product of these failures and shows the progress from conflict through disengagement. These claims are developed on the basis of findings of other authors and illustrated though a case analysis of an absent father.

Ancillary