If you’ve not come across child to parent violence before; if you don’t know anyone affected; it’s easy to misread the signs. Sadly, we have come to accept that adults can experience intimate partner violence. Folk may not all fully understand what is going on and why, but they get that it happens. So when you hear shouting and screaming noises through the wall from the neighbours, or when you see bruises, it would be natural to draw that conclusion.
In my last post I referred to the emergence of a number of themes through the day as we met last week in Nottingham. I want to return to one of these now, namely the issues around conceptualising child to parent violence as domestic violence.
This is something that has been covered by a number of people in the past (e.g. Holt or Hunter, Nixon and Parr), but it keeps re-emerging for a number of reasons. Firstly, much of the work being developed in Britain at the moment is taking place within agencies also dealing with adult intimate partner violence, forcing the issue as adjustments are made to approaches or expectations. Secondly, the change in definition of domestic violence within Britain to include perpetrators aged 16 upwards, has been hailed by some as a positive move, allowing the open discussion of the topic in a new way, and the recognition within policy of the reality of parent abuse. Continue reading