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Second Thoughts by Lynn Berger is a literary and scientific insight into having and being a second child. Translated from Dutch, it is part memoir and part discussion about birth order, sibling rivalry and sibling relationships. By the time the author wrote this book, she already had two children. But here she recaps on her decision-making process to have a second child after her daughter was born. Second Thoughts is a balanced look at second-time parenthood. There’s a lot packed into its 200 or so pages – it’s written in a balanced, non-judgemental way and isn’t intended to sway readers in one direction or another. Lynn Berger explores psychological research and speaks to experts to see whether (or how) birth order may influence personality and development. She brings the science to life with personal anecdotes about growing up with a young sister and the interactions between her son and daughter as they discover each other and the world around them. Having a second child tends to be a heart-led decision, rather than a scientific one. But this will be helpful background to anyone with an interest in psychology.
A beautifully written account of a quest, both personal and scientific, to better understand the impact and experience of the second child.
There are entire shelves filled with books on parenthood from fairy tales, novels and memoirs to polemics and collections of essays. But while I was expecting our second child, I realised that we have surprisingly few words for this particular new experience.
While every parent knows more of what to expect the next time round, the birth of a second child is no less momentous. Family relationships multiply, birth-order myths hover and sibling rivalry and parental exhaustion threaten. Yet the potential for joy and love within the family also expands, as if by magic.
This new literary talent shines a tender insight on a forgotten subject: what it is to parent for the second time and what it is to forever be a younger child.
'Beautifully written, deeply humane, a gem of a book.' Rutger Bregman, author of Humankind: A Hopeful History and Utopia for Realists
'Fresh, intricate, daring and often wise.' Susie Boyt, author of Love and Fame
'A subtle and captivating tour of a topic we've strangely overlooked.' Sarah Knott, author of Mother: An Unconventional History
'Gorgeous ... Berger's thoughtful inquiry eloquently illuminates the complexities of second-time parenthood.' Publishers Weekly
Publication date: 15/04/2021
Publisher: September Publishing
|Publication date:||15th April 2021|
|Genres:||Mind & Body, Parenting,|
|Categories:||Family & relationships, Sociology: family & relationships, Family psychology,|
Lynn Berger (born 1984) is a writer for De Correspondent, the acclaimed Dutch unbreaking news platform where she covers care. She received her PhD in Communications from Columbia University in 2016. She now lives in Amsterdam.More About Lynn Berger