|| The Good Mother
|| Sue Miller
|| Dell Publishing © 1986
666 Fifth Avenue
New York, New York 10103
This is a fictional account of a divorced women's adjustment and a custody
hearing that resulted in the loss of her four-year-old daughter. The mother
falls in love
with a artist who allows the child to touch his penis after a shower. The child
also climbs into the bed while the mother and the lover are having sexual
intercourse. The father (now remarried) of the child files for custody and wins
it on the sexual allegations. The book is well written and has good insight into
the post-divorce adjustments of a single women with a young child.
This is a horrible story of the state of custody in this
country. No court has been able to successfully deal with the problem and
best-interests-of-child criteria are seldom sufficiently helpful to guide our courts.
details the hiring of lawyers and physicians and their expense and Solomon-like
burdens. It also describes the battle of the experts with play-by-play
The book remains a sad commentary on the custody problems
that face all courts as single parenthood increases in our country. It also
illustrates the fact that our society has so broadly defined sexual abuse that
normal family sexual expression may result in allegations of sexual abuse.
book has been made into a movie
Reviewed by LeRoy Schultz, Professor, School of
Social Work, West Virginia University.