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Political Issues This forum is for discussing the political aspects of divorce: reform to divorce laws, men's rights, women's rights, injustices in the divorce system, etc.

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Old 12-18-2014, 07:05 PM
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Default Divorced Related Malicious Mother Syndrome

This is a topic worth getting in to albeit I want to say upfront that I feel the syndrome would be better off named" Divorce Related Malicious Parent Syndrome". The following are some information found from the "Journal Of Family Violence".

A mother who unjustifiably punishes her divorcing or divorced husband by Attempting to alienate their mutual child(ren) from the father.

1. Involving others in malicious actions against the father
2. Engaging in excessive litigation

The mother specifically attempts to deny her child(ren):

3. Regular uninterrupted visitation with the father
4. Uninhibited telephone access to the father
5. Paternal participation in the child(ren)'s school life and extra-curricular activities

3. The pattern is pervasive and includes malicious acts towards the husband including:

1. Lying to the children
2. Lying to others
3. Violations of law
4. The disorder is not specifically due to another mental disorder although a separate mental disorder may co-exist.

Some quotes from an established psychologist involved in over 60 books and articles.

Quote:
A divorced man gains custody of his children and his ex-wife burns down his home.
A woman in a custody battle buys a cat for her offspring because her divorcing husband is highly allergic to cats.
A mother forces her children to sleep in a car to "prove" their father has bankrupted them.
I'm certain that the above could be imagined as some of the more drastic occurrences. It's petrifying to me that putrid acts like this actually occur.

Quote:
The media has spent considerable effort raising public awareness about the problem posed by divorced fathers who do not provide court ordered child support payments. Hedges (1991) has noted that less than 20% of divorced fathers provide child support payments three years after their divorce. Research on the decline of women's economic status following divorce (e.g., Hernandez, 1988; Laosa, 1988) has contributed to recent legislation to address the "Deadbeat Dad" problem.
Very interesting take.


Quote:
The range of actions taken by a mother to attempt to alienate her children from their father is impressive. For example:

One mother lied to her children that she could no longer buy food because their father had spent all of their money on women at topless bars.

A doctor's wife forced her 10 year old son to apply for federally funded free school lunches to delude the boy that his "daddy has made us poor."

A woman who for years was very close to the children in a custody battle, was asked by their mother to give up neutrality and join her campaign against the father to "dance on his grave." When the friend refused to give up her neutrality, the mother falsely informed her children that their father was having an affair with this woman.

These behaviors, if successful, could lead a child to not only hate the father but perhaps go years without seeing him. As Cartwright (1993) has noted: "The goal of the alienator is crystalline: to deprive the lost parent, not only of the child's time, but of the time of childhood" (p. 210).
The recruitment of others to lie and torment the other parent is another variable

Quote:
Experts are in relative agreement that regular and uninterrupted visitation with the non-residential parent is desirable and beneficial for children, except in extreme circumstances (Hedges, 1991). In fact, some states, such as Florida, have laws written to reflect this view (Keane, 1990). Unfortunately, even when the father and children have legal rights to visitation, individuals with Divorce Related Malicious Mother Syndrome continue to interfere with it.

A mother who previously attacked her ex-husband physically during visitation transfers of the children, refused to provide the children when the ex-husband had the police attend to monitor exchanges.

When one divorced father arrived to pick up his children for visitation, the mother arranged for her and the children to be elsewhere so that the father could not visit with the children.

One mother had her physically intimidating boyfriend assault her ex-husband when he came to pick up his children for visitation.

The President of The Council for Children's Rights (Washington, D.C.) notes that such alienation is considered a form of child abuse (Levy, 1992). Unfortunately, the police typically avoid involving themselves in such situations. Furthermore, unless a victimized father is financially capable of returning to court on an ongoing basis, there is little that can be done to prevent such mothers' behavior. Finally, even when such cases are brought to trial, the courts are often inadequate in supporting fathers' visitation rights (Commission on Gender Bias in the Judicial System, 1992).
Denying regular visitation? Yet another variable. One I know all too well.

Quote:
An additional difficulty is that many therapists are unaware of this pattern of malicious behavior (Heinz and Heinz, 1993). As such, there are therapists who are "fooled" by such cases and, as noted earlier, will come to court testifying that there is nothing wrong with the mother involved.
This is why one needs to be cautious and document "patterns of malicious behavior". As seen above, malicious behavior isn't malicious if the professional is not cognizant of it. It's been repeated and repeated .. document everything. Although I don't encourage any form of surreptitious recording, if you're confident that there will be some antics that will affect your livelihood, custody, "freedom" .. record everything.

"Scummy" lawyer's (as Mr. T. would correctly put it) tend to eat this up for supper and completely take full advantage of the malicious behavior and tend to pour gasoline on an already blazing fire pit. As mentioned here:

Quote:
From a legal perspective, there are some attorneys who may unintentionally encourage this type of behavior (Gardner, 1989). On the other hand, there are some attorneys who deliberately encourage such behavior, as the financial rewards for them are time dependent. In other words, the more involved the litigation process, the greater the profits for the attorney (Grotman and Thomas, 1990). However, even for the subset of attorneys for whom this may be true, there is a point of diminishing returns. Furthermore, independent of economic considerations, many who become involved with family law courtrooms find that these types of cases are not handled well (Greif, 1985; Levy, 1992).
Take on the "sex distribution":

Quote:
The issue of sex distribution of the disorder certainly needs to be addressed. The overwhelming majority of custodial parents are female (Commission on Gender Bias in the Judicial System, 1992). Gardner (1989) has noted that Parental Alienation Syndrome appears most commonly in females, although it is possible for a male who has custody of the children to engage in the same type of alienating behaviors. The author's experience with Divorce Related Malicious Mother Syndrome is similar to Gardner's. However, the present writer has yet to see a case of a father engaging in all of the criteria listed. This does not mean that it is not possible for there to be a "Malicious Father" Syndrome. In fact, Shepard (1992) reports that there is significant abuse of some custodial mothers by non-residential fathers. On the other hand, it should be noted that there are females who are required to pay child support, but we have yet to hear about "Deadbeat Moms." Given at the present time that a case in which the father met all of the criteria for Divorce Related Malicious Mother Syndrome has yet to be documented, it appears advisable to await scientific evidence to guide issues of nosologic labeling.
I just felt it was an interesting discussion.

I'm also familiar with Dr. Turkat's work. His work is found in a multitude of peer-reviewed, popular journal's, which as we know are the scientific backbone of the DSM. Dr. Turkat works in many custody cases also and remains a highly sought psychologist.
http://maliciousparentingindivorce.com/

Last edited by LovingFather32; 12-18-2014 at 07:28 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 12-18-2014, 09:29 PM
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I printed off an article on this for my partner to read. It was enlightening. A good read is the book A Familys Heartbreak by Mike Jeffries. It goes into some of the thoughts/motivations behind alienation.
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Old 12-19-2014, 11:55 PM
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Another interesting divorce-related theory:

Implacable Hostility Theory:
Implacable hostility arises after separation or divorce and denotes the attitude shown by one parent to another in denying access to, or contact with, their child(ren). What differentiates implacable hostility from the typical hostility that may arise after separation/divorce is that the deep-rooted nature of the hostility cannot be justified on rational grounds and measures taken by third parties including mediators and the family courts are to no avail.


Psychological theory of Implacable hostilty:
One version of this holds that the powerful maternal instinct overrides even the claims of the father especially in circumstances where the mother feels threatened that she may lose control of the child, or is concerned lest the child become attached to the man whom she now doesn't love.

Also, the control and financial components.
Implacable hostility - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
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Old 12-20-2014, 12:46 PM
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I'd be pretty suspicious about any article purporting to discover a new "syndrome" or "disorder". These are scientific terms with precise meanings having to do with the distinction between symptoms, underlying causes, and normal functioning. They don't mean "people being a$$holes". This sloppy usage is why a lot of legal, medical and psychological experts have trouble taking seriously claims of things like Parental Alienation Syndrome or Hostile Parenting Syndrome - these are not real diagnostic terms, they're just ways of saying that one party thinks the other party is behaving like an a$$hole.

I don't know Dr Turkat's work, but I do know the DSM and there is no way something like Divorce Related Malicious Mother Syndrome would ever make it in.

First, the word "malicious" speaks to motivation or intent, which is not observable, and science is based on what is observable.

Second, "divorce" is not related to the symptoms of this alleged disorder - the psychological sequelae of divorce (anxiety, hostility) are. This is why we have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, not Post Being In A War Disorder. It's the consequences of the event, not the event itself, that are clinically significant.

And third, "Mother": this is either an attempt to fan the flames of the endless and pointless bickering about which gender has more a$$holes, or an example of bro-science - me and my bros seen some women doing that, so it must be a woman thing to do.

So the takeaway is - take what is useful or helpful from what has been written, but don't assume that because someone calls something a "syndrome" that it is scientifically valid or plausible.
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Old 12-20-2014, 04:56 PM
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If you know the DSM than you are aware that on axis I there are v codes that deal with "relational problems". (partner relational problems, partner abuse, child maltreatment).

Divorce is highly correlated with increases in anxiety and hostility. This is a well-known fact. Just as the war vet's panic attack when a plane flies above him downtown is due to experiences in the war. Thus, there are many antecedents to PTSD which cause the same physiological reaction based on symptom cluster's.

However, divorce brings out a whole new set of behavioral responses that are being studied now. Not panic attacks, phobias and such.

You can call it "bro science" if you want. Ive already agreed that it should be titled "parent" instead of "mother". Although in his articles he does provide a soli case for his title.

I work among psychologists and I also know the DSM VERY well. Believe me when I say PAS will be included in the near future as will others similar.

National Institute Of Health also agrees that the DSM requires reform.
Relationship problems and the DSM:needed improvements and suggested solutions

They are working on diagnostic criteria as we speak for many different disorders/syndromes which occur "between or among us". This has been what's lacking n the DSM. The "between/among us" variable.

Every psychologist I speak with agrees. We will see these in the DSM. Perhaps with different titles, perhaps with a new set of diagnostic criteria. But nasty divorce (along with other potential predisposing factors) does indeed alter the brain chemistry of some and there are specific behaviors noted due to this imbalance.

Many disorders required time to soak in the scientific community before DSM entered them. These divorce-related relational problems are no exception. Its almost their time.

I'm not having a gender war here. I fully expected the "bro science" thing to come up and for it to completely get in to gender. This is about the emotional/cognitive consequences of divorce and what needs to be done about it to help those affected. When these are implemented in to the DSM proper therapeutic resources will become available for the specific symptom clusters.

Here is the Dr's explanation of sex distribution and choice of the word "mother". Keep in mind this isn't a magazine entry. It's a peer -reviewed scholarly journal.

Quote:
The issue of sex distribution of the disorder certainly needs to be addressed. The overwhelming majority of custodial parents are female (Commission on Gender Bias in the Judicial System, 1992). Gardner (1989) has noted that Parental Alienation Syndrome appears most commonly in females, although it is possible for a male who has custody of the children to engage in the same type of alienating behaviors.

The author's experience with Divorce Related Malicious Mother Syndrome is similar to Gardner's. However, the present writer has yet to see a case of a father engaging in all of the criteria listed. This does not mean that it is not possible for there to be a "Malicious Father" Syndrome. In fact, Shepard (1992) reports that there is significant abuse of some custodial mothers by non-residential fathers.

On the other hand, it should be noted that there are females who are required to pay child support, but we have yet to hear about "Deadbeat Moms." Given at the present time that a case in which the father met all of the criteria for Divorce Related Malicious Mother Syndrome has yet to be documented, it appears advisable to await scientific evidence to guide issues of nosologic labeling.

Last edited by LovingFather32; 12-20-2014 at 05:39 PM.
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Old 12-20-2014, 05:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stripes View Post
This sloppy usage is why a lot of legal, medical and psychological experts have trouble taking seriously claims of things like Parental Alienation Syndrome or Hostile Parenting Syndrome - these are not real diagnostic terms, they're just ways of saying that one party thinks the other party is behaving like an a$$hole.
Voodoo science, and not recognized.

Quote:
Originally Posted by stripes View Post

I don't know Dr Turkat's work, but I do know the DSM and there is no way something like Divorce Related Malicious Mother Syndrome would ever make it in.
........

And third, "Mother": this is either an attempt to fan the flames of the endless and pointless bickering about which gender has more a$$holes, or an example of bro-science - me and my bros seen some women doing that, so it must be a woman thing to do.
Funny enough, Turkat re-published in 1999 and did in fact re-label his voodoo syndrome as Divorce Related Malicious Parent Syndrome.

So, in fact Stripes you are quite correct - a$$hole-ishness is gender neutral. No surprise there.
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Old 12-20-2014, 05:59 PM
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The earlier terms for PTSD used to be include "shell shock", "soldier's heart" and "war neurosis".

Too much focus is being made on "titles". I get it, he included the word "mother". Must mean it's a voodoo science. And some of the great psychiatrists of ODF have made the decision that it's not recognized. lol

Quote:
Though debate swirls as to whether the occurrence should be termed a syndrome, a disorder, or simply 'parental alienation,' Canadian and American judges, lawyers, and psychologists are increasingly buying into a view that sees programming a child to despise a non-custodial parent as grounds for removing the "brainwashed" child from the alienating parent's custody - or what is known in the extreme as a court-ordered "parentectomy."
Quote:
Between 1987 and January 31, 2009, there have been roughly 74 cases in which Canada's courts acknowledged parental alienation in its decision, according to research presented at the conference by Gene Colman, a Toronto lawyer.

Significantly, 53 of those cases occurred in the past eight years and 28 of them occurred in Ontario. Out of the total 74 cases, the mother was determined to be the alienator about two-thirds of the time.
A$$holishness gender neutral all the time? Stats disagree with your theory. (see above). Since we want to remain on the gender thing. I can bring in the statistics.

http://cspas.ca/article_national_post.shtml

Last edited by LovingFather32; 12-20-2014 at 06:56 PM.
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Old 12-20-2014, 07:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LovingFather32 View Post
Quote:
Between 1987 and January 31, 2009, there have been roughly 74 cases in which Canada's courts acknowledged parental alienation in its decision, according to research presented at the conference by Gene Colman, a Toronto lawyer.

Significantly, 53 of those cases occurred in the past eight years and 28 of them occurred in Ontario. Out of the total 74 cases, the mother was determined to be the alienator about two-thirds of the time.
A$$holishness gender neutral all the time? Stats disagree with your theory. (see above). Since we want to remain on the gender thing. I can bring in the statistics.

Canadian Symposium for Parental Alienation Syndrome
53 cases in EIGHT years in all of Canada is statistically significant?? Huh.

I wonder how many divorce/custody cases actually made it to court during that same time period. Thousands and thousands in Canada??

And, if the mother gets the majority of parental time in those 74 cases, the mother being the alienator about 2/3 of the time is likely statistically the same as 1/3 of the time it being the father (who may have less time with their children overall).

Last edited by SadAndTired; 12-20-2014 at 07:17 PM.
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Old 12-20-2014, 08:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SadAndTired View Post
53 cases in EIGHT years in all of Canada is statistically significant?? Huh.

I wonder how many divorce/custody cases actually made it to court during that same time period. Thousands and thousands in Canada??

And, if the mother gets the majority of parental time in those 74 cases, the mother being the alienator about 2/3 of the time is likely statistically the same as 1/3 of the time it being the father (who may have less time with their children overall).
Oh crap... the squad. When one shows they all show....interestingly. Later ... happy holidays.
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Old 12-20-2014, 08:41 PM
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