Author: Vikki Stark, M.S.W.

Reviewed By: Anne Holmes

In this book, Vikki Stark shares her painful story and provides plenty of stories from others, as well as, help and support as she writes of “Wife Abandonment Syndrome.” She explains that WAS is a pattern of behavior in which the husband leaves his wife out of the blue, without ever having previously told her he was unhappy with the marriage. And worse, as soon as he leaves – which he may do very publicly – he usually immediately moves in with a girlfriend, and replaces his former caring demeanor with one of anger and aggression.

In Stark’s case, her husband abandons her just as she returns home from her book tour for an earlier book, “My Sister, My Self,” which had culminated gloriously, with an appearance on NBC’s “Today” show. While on tour, she had received daily supportive calls from him. Now, instead of sharing in her glory, he simply tells her, “I can’t take this any longer,” and walks out.

As a coping mechanism, Stark put up a web site featuring a survey to be filled out by other women who had been similarly abruptly abandoned by their husbands despite the fact that they’d thought they were in successful relationships. Four hundred women responded. You can find their stories at

This book is the result of her study. In it, Stark provides a gold mine of practical counsel for getting through the emotional train wreck that inevitably follows.

If you find yourself similarly abandoned, you will especially love the chapter called the “Big Fridge,” which is chock full of recovery strategies and coping tricks all designed to help you make it through your emotional trauma, and successfully come out on the other side – a new and even better you.

The song list in the appendix is a goldmine too! It’s a great list of songs that have helped others make it through this experience.

Stark tells us that no matter how long ago it happened, recovery from Wife Abandonment Syndrome isn’t easy. But it can be done.

You need to grieve the loss of your life as you knew it. Once your initial grieving is done, your next step is to turn your focus from the past and your thoughts of what could have been, to the future and taking steps to making it meaningful.

This book will help you do just that.

Originally Published on

Anne Holmes Boomer-in-Chief of NABBW
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