Child to parent violence: round the world in a week

A lot more bits and pieces from around the world in the last weeks…..

Good to see the Daphne RCPV website is now up and running. You will find it here, with information about the project and research as  a whole, conferences and training events linked to the programme, ways to get involved and a link to the RCPV blog. Recent posts cover the progress of the research in the different participating countries: Sweden, Spain, Bulgaria and Ireland.

From the Netherlands, you can now read, in English, the report of the recent investigation into prevalence and characteristics of parent abuse from Movisie (the Netherlands Centre for Social Development) and TNO Innovation for life. As well as presenting the findings, the report makes a number of recommendations for improvements in reporting and response, including agreeing terminology and definitions, early work to build prevention of violence, and the increased use of proven therapeutic techniques. The English version is available here.

I am grateful to Amanda Holt for bringing an Australian publication to my attention a week or so ago. Published online in March in the International Journal of Law and Psychiatry, the article examines the characteristics of parent abuse in the context of applications for intervention orders made in a children’s court.

In England there is still time to make arrangements to attend the public seminar at Leeds University on Monday April 28th at 5pm. Rachel Condry will be presenting a paper, The Problem of Adolescent to Parent Violence: A criminological study. Full details here.

Following up on the report on adoption disruption in my last post, I want to draw attention to the preferred definition used by the research team. They used Paterson’s definition, which they chose specifically because it mentions not only the violence and intimidation, but also the changes in parental behaviour as a result, for instance, parents who needed locks on cupboards, bedrooms and who had to split their parenting between children.

Behaviour considered to be violent if others in the family feel threatened, intimidated or controlled by it and if they believe that they must adjust their own behaviour to accommodate threats or anticipation of violence (Paterson et al, 2002).

A number of other points are also worthy of further comment. The extreme use of knives by adolescents to intimidate family members was unexpected by the research team and they wondered whether other investigations had found the same. Of the families experiencing violence from children, 80% reported a gradual build-upover many years, while 20% noted a sudden onset at puberty. Can all of this be explained by attachment disorders? It remains clear that there are no straight forward answers, even within groups of children sharing a traumatic past history.

Finally, the long-awaited Student page has now materialised. I will be posting information about student projects, requests, dissertations, etc etc. Please let me know how I can help YOU!

1 Comment

Filed under Discussion, projects, publications, Research, Training opportunities

One response to “Child to parent violence: round the world in a week

  1. I was very interested to read the article in the International Journal of Law and Psychiatry on Intervention Orders involving juveniles. The research is based in Melbourne, where I work. There are similarities and differences between their samples and mine (a few of them are probably the same families). Since only a few (I’d guess about 10%) of my families go as far as applying for I.O.s I’d expect quite large differences in demographics but their descriptions seem quite similar, with slightly more serious physical violence as would be expected. By coincidence, for example, they have exactly the same percentage of boys and girls (31%) as in my clinical sample of 430 young people.

    I would like to emphasise that the authors have confirmed that the reference to my work towards the end of the paper is to do with a general belief and perception at that time that violence to parents is not serious, and that children grow out of it. Not that this is what I have said myself.

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