Apathy is not a cause of marital breakdown: it is a symptom. Marital breakdown occurs when the minimum emotional or physical needs of one or both partners are no longer being met.
This was one of a number of precise and lucid answers Dr Jack Dominian gave to questions at a Press conference in London last week to launch his new book. "Proposals For a New Sexual Ethic," published by Darton, Longman and Todd at £1.50.
It is the latest of several books by this distinguished Catholic psychiatrist on marriage and sexuality. What Dr Dominian endeavours to do is to throw the light of the social and psychological insights of this century on the commandments man received in the Old Testament. though mentioned, was not. apparently, available in time to cor
rect one or two very minor inaccuracies in Dr Heron's references to the position in Ireland.
After reading the book, some people may be left wondering what kind of two-Church allegiance is possible in practice. It is necessary ' to realise that this area is a new and developing One where there can be no simple recipe for every different situation..
What the author does is point the way forward in general theological terms, open up the possibilities, and help inter-church families and their Church advisers to think about them in the light of their own Churches' discipline.
To my mind, this book goes as far as one could go at present, striking a good balance between optimistic ecumenism and practical down-toearth advice.
Patrick Devine Catholic Adviser to the Irish Association of Inter-church Families