Protect children block the discredited parental alienation theory

Help us protect children and families and make our communities safer to live in

parental alienation who invented it ? Help us protect children Send this to elected officials may education end this.

Help us protect children and families and make our communities safer to live in

must see this 321 pages of citations to legal and evidence "2018 the year victorious children exposes the pervert phds? Phds across the Globe are using a discredited pro-pedophile theory to say child sexual abuse is pleasurable or silly if liking or fingering for profit ?
No matter the reason they are gateway legalizing sex with children? Some even work for health and human services in rural Wisconsin imagine that? But worse yet are the lawyers, district attorneys, and judges who appear to be allowing these pervert phds to run there courts? Rather than protect children they appear to be profiting off these pervert phds gateway legalizing abuse of all forms while aiding abusers in gaining
full custody of the victim? The most commonly used term pervert phds use to give abusers custody is parental alienation and most are smart enough not to use the term in a report because they know it is a discredited pro-pedophile fraud ? So instead they write reports that discredit abuse allegations and call it
pleasurable or silly like that pervert phd in central Wisconsin who's license appears to be protected by the afcc and health and human services? 2018 the year Victorious children exposes the pervert phds and the pro-pedophile fraud parental alienation while demanding these pervert phds be criminally charged. For they know what there doing, they know it is not legal, and they know child sexual abuse of any form to a child is by no
means pleasurable or silly. Only a pervert child molester would say pleasurable or silly and they to can get a phd?"

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I care about the safety of children, Family's, and communities across the United States. The current out dated policy's in place in family courts are bankrupting family's placing children in abusers homes and making our communities dangerous to live in.

It is time to address the family court crisis and stop ignoring parents pleas for help and retaliating against them for standing up for the protection of children and instead stand with them and against the family court corporation harming children and families.

I hereby request the immediate removal of judges from the afcc and the aaml which could be in violation of cannon laws(if it is not legislation drafted stating it is) see link

I request immediate enactment of legislation that States child safety is the paramount concern in all child custody proceedings

I request the immediate investigation into the Wisconsin afcc International headquarters in Madison Wis. operating with out a current ein number see link

I request the removal of Therapeutic Jurisprudence in family courts bankrupting families and placing children in abusers homes for profit see link

I request the removal of the friendly parent provision punishing parents for protecting their children from reported abusers see link

I request an immediate public integrity investigation into every case involving afcc members who may have been case rigging, violating parents constitutional rights , and dragging out cases for the benefit of the afcc and it's members see link

Note this is an National/ international organization and i care about all children's safety see link Wisconsin holds international head quarters for the Afcc?

See also Victims and critics of the afcc ?

Sign petition here

Parental Alienation Syndrome Leading

December 1, 2006

An unsafe and unsound theory of human behaviour which is leading to Perverse Reversal of Child Custody placing children at serious risk of harm Richard Ducote an attorney at law in New Orleans stated in 2003 of Gardner and his PAS theory that “PAS is a bogus, pro-paedophiliac fraud concocted by Richard Gardner. I was the last attorney to cross-examine Gardner in Patterson New Jersey. …He has not been Court appointed to do anything for decades. The only two appellate Courts in the country who have considered the question of whether PAS meets the Frye test, i.e. whether it is generally accepted in the scientific community, said it does not. Gardner and his theory have done untold damage to sexually and physically abused children and their protective parents. PAS has been rejected by every reputable organisation considering it. In a Florida case in which I was recently involved, when the Judge insisted oee more at:   

Update on Parental Alienation Syndrome

Paul L. Feinstein, Illinois divorce attorney, explains the findings in a study of Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) and the differences between the terms PAS and just parental alienation.

By Paul L. Feinstein
Updated: January 14, 2015

Link Excerpts Section “Tort Liability”  Another issue is whether or not PAS, or parental alienation, should lead to tort liability. One court that allowed such a claim is Raftery v. Scott, 756 F.2d 335 (4th Cir. 1985). Virginia law applied in an emotional distress suit when the wife hid the child and alienated him from the father. Wisconsin law is to the contrary. Gleiss v. Newman, 415 N.W.2d 845 (Wis. Ct. App. 1987) (cause of action not allowed; to do so could encourage claims for petty infractions). See also Larson v. Dunn, 460 N.W.2d 39 (Minnesota 1990) (intentional interference with custody rights tort not recognized; to do so would create new weapon in custody cases).

"The widespread acceptance of a specific cause of action for parental alienation seems unlikely to occur in the near future." Kathleen Niggemyer: "Parental Alienation Is Open Heart Surgery: It Needs More Than a Band-Aid to Fix It". California Western Law Review, Spring 1998. 34 Cal. W.L.Rev. 567, 576.

Jennifer Hault concludes, "As a legal matter, PAS's inadmissibility is appropriate given its lack of scientific validity and reliability... PAS's 20-year run in American courts is an embarrassing chapter in the history of evidentiary law. It reflects the wholesale failure of legal professionals entrusted with evidentiary gate-keeping intended to guard legal processes from the taint of pseudo-science." Hault, supra, page 22.

Although Dr. Gardner's 2003 death should help put an end to PAS testimony, matrimonial practitioners will continue to be compelled to address accusations of parental alienation. - See more at:   Hard copy

THE “FRIENDLY PARENT” CONCEPT: A FLAWED FACTOR FOR CHILD CUSTODY Margaret K. Dore∗ 2004 Link Excerpts page 11 Last paragraph “Parental Alienation Syndrome contains three features of a friendly parent analysis. First, the alleged disorder is caused by one parent’s “indoctrination” of the child against the other parent.70 As with a friendly parent analysis, one parent fails to support the child’s relationship with the other parent.71 Second, the outcomes can be the same. Where there is a problem with visitation, a solution is to transfer custody to the other parent.72 Third and perhaps most importantly, Parental Alienation Syndrome, like the friendly parent concept, presents a paradox. Richard Ducote states: “One irony of . . . ‘PAS’ is that the increased existence of valid evidence of true sexual abuse leads Gardner and his devotees to more fervently diagnose ‘PAS.’ Thus, ‘PAS’ is the criminal defense attorney’s dream, since the greater the proof of the crime, the greater the proof of the defense.”73 Hard copy

Book :”Prosecuted but Not Silenced Courtroom Reform for Sexually Abused Children” by Maralee Mclean Excerpts “Prosecuted but Not Silenced  “

Courtroom Reform for Sexually Abused Children

by Maralee Mclean

"A powerful documentary about a mother and daughter's tragic involvement with the judicial system when there were allegations of child sexual abuse. This riveting book is a must read for all those working in the fields of domestic violence, child abuse, or child trauma so they can realize what does occur even today. It is important to ensure that all judges, attorneys, mental health professionals, medical personnel, child custody evaluators, and social workers are trained in the dynamics of such maltreatment so that there are no more situations like what happened to Maralee and her daughter."

---Robert Geffner, Ph.D., ABPP, ABN

Founding President, Family Violence & Sexual Assault Institute

Co-Chair, National Partnership to End Interpersonal Violence Across the Lifespan

Former President, Trauma Psychology Division, American Psychological Association

"Most sexually abused children are victimized in their own homes. The family court is the gatekeeper of their safety. May Ms. McLean's painful story energize its readers and spark a tsunami of accountability and scrutiny for those judges, custody evaluators, guardians ad litem, and lawyers whose misguided, and often misogynistic, nonsense jeopardizes generations of children and compounds their misery." ---Richard Ducote, Esq. Pennsylvania and Louisiana Bars 404 pages - $27.99 (paperback)    

Courts Must Open Eyes and Ears to Abused Children By: Maralee McLean January 9, 2014 Link Excerpts “But after raising sexual abuse allegations against her father, and spending three years in the family court trying to protect my daughter, I was reduced to one-hour-a-week supervised visits for eight years and treated as if I were a hardened criminal. This was all due to a custody evaluator's opinion through an "ex-parte" (a hearing without all the parties present). That evaluator cited Dr. Richard Gardner's debunked "parental alienation syndrome" and left out all medical reports, police reports and pre-school teacher reports”.  Hard copy

The Kafkaesque nightmare of family court by Michael Volpe - Oct 30, 2015


Link “ Excerpts In many cases, family court becomes an evil, surreal nightmare rather than a system to protect children”


Excerpts “Once Kelley was deemed a parental alienator, her nightmare hit overdrive.  She was told she couldn’t sit next to her son, couldn’t drive if he was in the car, couldn’t take him for medical care, couldn’t see his medical records, couldn’t whisper to him, had to take away his video games if he acted out sexually, and must repeat verbiage provided by the judge whenever he hit her.

Susan Skipp experienced a similar situation. When Susan Skipp’s divorce ended, she was given physical custody of her children. When Skipp went back to court to try and to enforce child support, the guardian ad litem, Mary Brigham, entered an appearance. Brigham made the appearance despite no invitation from the court for her to re-enter the case.

Skipp, who was the victim of domestic violence during her marriage, was soon deemed a parental alienator. Read more at               Hard copy

Dear Custody Court Judge: EXTREME CUSTODY DECISIONS THAT RISK LIVES - By Barry Goldstein Wednesday, July 20, 2011 Link Excerpts page 5  Section “Sexual Abuse Cases “ Many of the extreme decisions come in cases involving allegations of sexual abuse. By the time children reach the age of eighteen, one-third of the girls and one-sixth of the boys have been sexually abused. The stereotypical rapist or sexual abuser is a stranger, but 83% of rape and sexual abuse is committed by someone the victim knows. For young children, this is often their father, but when allegations are made by mothers in custody cases, the alleged abuser receives custody 85% of the time and the mother is often denied any meaningful relationship with the children she tried to protect. A large majority of these decisions are wrong and it is extremely difficult for judges to get these cases right with the deeply flawed practices that are standard in these cases.  Excerpts second paragraph “Many years ago, three brave children complained their father was physically and sexually abusing them. The mother obtained a protective order limiting the father to supervised visitation and sought custody. The children told the CPS caseworker, their attorney, the judge and the court-appointed evaluator what their father did to them. As is common in these cases, these professionals decided the mother was brainwashing the children and they threatened to take custody away from her unless she stopped. The judge ordered a resumption of unsupervised visitation that weekend. Before the first visitation could start, the father was confronted by the baby sitter in the presence of the children’s law guardian and admitted kissing his daughters on their privates. The law guardian immediately made a motion to stop the visitation which I supported. The judge consulted the evaluator who said the father used bad judgment, but there was no reason to stop the visitation. During the first visit the four-year-old was penetrated for the first time”. see link for rest Hard Copy

Parental Alienation Not A Mental Disorder, American Psychiatric Association Says  09/21/2012 03:18 pm ET DAVID CRARY

Link Excerpts "5th paragraph “The bottom line – it is not a disorder within one individual," said Dr. Darrel Regier, vice chair of the task force drafting the manual. "It's a relationship problem – parent-child or parent-parent. Relationship problems per se are not mental disorders."  

Excerpts 18th paragraph see link “"The truth is that parental alienation really is a dangerous and cleverly marketed legal strategy that has caused much harm to victims of abuse," said the National Organization for Women amid the controversy.

Bernet, in his proposal to the DSM-5 task force, said he agreed that "in some instances the concept of parental alienation has been misused by abusive parents to hide their behavior."                hard copy

The Parental Alienation Debate Belongs in the Courtroom, Not in DSM-5

Timothy M. Houchin, MD, John Ranseen, PhD, Phillip A. K. Hash, DO, PhD and Daniel J. Bartnicki, JD jaapl January 1, 2012 vol. 40 no. 1 127-131 Link  Excerpts section "Economics of PAS"

"As with any heated controversy, one must examine the possible financial motivations that may influence the positions of those engaged in debate. Unfortunately, to get a good sense of PAS's support, one has only to follow the money trail. Litigation stemming from the dissolution of marriage is estimated to be a $28 billion industry.16 It is no secret that the cost of divorce and custody litigation can add yet another facet of stress to all involved. Adding any further complexity to the problems involved in child custody only serves to compound the financial burden borne by the affected families. A formal diagnosis of PAS, with the obligatory dueling experts testifying at a custody hearing, can become a prime source of fee generation for everyone but the divorcing family." "The Associated Press article cited above2 went on to speak about how the diagnosis of PAS might garner more business for those involved in the evaluation of child custody. The article highlighted the view of Elizabeth Kates, an attorney who litigates child custody cases. “It's monetary,” Kates said. “These psychologists and therapists make huge money doing the evaluations and therapies.”

"As Kates suggested, additional assessments would be a financial boon to evaluators who already oversee a complicated process with multiple variables that affect cost. In 2001, psychologist Dr. Ira Turkat wrote an article in which he, too, shed light on the economics of child custody evaluations: Custody evaluations can be pricey…. In 2003, the Florida Court of Appeal noted that one psychologist charged $20,000—an amount equal to the parties' entire net worth, and questioned how it could be in a child's best interest for the family's resources to be depleted by fees of this magnitude [Ref. 17, p 8]."               Hard copy

UNDERSTANDING DOMESTIC VIOLENCE DYNAMICS: A PREREQUISITE FOR COURT PROFESSIONALS TO WORK ON DV CUSTODY CASES     Tuesday, February 26, 2013 by Barry Goldstein Link Excerpts 12 paragraph section What Happens When Court Professionals Do Not Understand DV Dynamics?”  “The Saunders’ study found that evaluators and other court professionals without the necessary training in specific topics like risk assessment, screening for domestic violence, post-separation violence and the impact of domestic violence on children tended to focus on harmful beliefs like the myth women frequently make false allegations, unscientific alienation theories and beliefs that attempts to protect children from abusers are harmful to the children. Significantly these mistaken notions are also more common in professionals who do not understand domestic violence dynamics. Saunders found that these beliefs are associated with recommendations and decisions that are harmful to children”. Hard copy

CUSTODY AWARDED TO ALLEDGEDLY ABUSIVE PARENTS Proposed “Damon’s Law” seeks to protect abused children in California By Jordan Schaffner  April 11, 2014  Link Excerpts Section “. Why allegedly abusive parents  are awarded custody”                                                                                              The reason why courts award custody to accused abusive parents are varied.  The main reason found is a version of a psychological theory called parental alienation syndrome ( invented by a psychiatrist in the 1980’s named Richard Gardner (

Some lawyers and judges seem to have used the theory in a misguided manner for their own malevolent political gain.  They say that the theory states that both parents need to be involved in the child’s life, even if one of the parents is accused of being abusive, while that accusation of the other parent is sometimes construed as alienating to the child. Complicating the problem, judges, attorneys, and psychologists have been accused of accepting bribes or favors for awarding custody to sexually abusive but wealthy parents. Cindy Dumas claimed the attorney on her ex-husband’s side was promoted after winning the case against her.  hard copy

Prosecuted, But Not Silenced: Courtroom Reform for Sexually Abused Children Maralee McLean, Child Advocate and Marissa Perrone, BA Link  Excerpts “Many custody/parenting time cases include allegations of “parental alienation” or “parental alienation syndrome” (PAS), a term coined by Richard Gardner, M.D. that is unsubstantiated in the research literature (Fink, 2010). This discredited and debunked “syndrome” by the American Psychological and American Psychiatric Associations, continues to be used to remove children from custody/parenting time with their protective parent (primarily mothers). The end result is children are abuse emotionally, physically, and sexually by their custodial parent (Stark, 2010). These cases span decades in the family court as bias by judges, uninformed custody evaluators (Saunders, et. al., 2011), and other court-related personnel continue to put children in harm’s way with their abusive parent (Chesler, 2011). The protective parent does everything possible to rescue the children from this situation while being mistreated and misrepresented by the players in family court (Goldstein & Hannah, 2010; Goldstein & Liu, 2013). The outcome for these children is an adult life filled with psychotherapy to overcome the trauma of their childhood (Perry, 2005; Shonkoff,, 2012), and the physical impacts that haunt them throughout their lifetime (Felitti & Anda, 1998). The trauma for the protective parent includes lifelong impacts as well (Rivera, Sullivan, Cris, & Zeoli, 2012).  Hard copy

Thursday, March 3, 2011   PAS as a Religion By Barry Goldstein Link  Excerpts “They take advantage of the rare exceptions when women make false allegations or children have a bad relationship with their father because of what the mother said or did. Children tend to love their parents even when they are seriously flawed. Most times if a parent bad mouths the other parent in ways that are false the result will be to undermine the relationship with the parent making the false charges. More commonly children dislike a parent because of child abuse, neglect or domestic violence. Relationships are often strained for normal child development reasons as anyone with a teen would know. It is easy for an abusive parent like Alec Baldwin to blame others for the results of his abusive behavior. It takes honesty and maturity for someone to accept responsibility for the harm they have caused. Obviously it is far easier to blame others and concoct a magic theory to support their lack of responsibility.  

Mental health professionals who have sought to profit from PAS are instead starting to lose their licenses because they are in affect diagnosing something that does not exist and is not part of the DSM. I hope professional associations will work to improve their reputations by disciplining unqualified members who profit by using unscientific theories. The last thing these professions need are members who are pathological. Hard copy

Lay, Rebecca. (2009). The Alienating Courtroom: PAS in Child Custody Battles. Defining the best interest of the child in custody battles becomes further complicated with PAS.

Link Excerpts In her parent’s seven-year-long custody battle over her and her sister, Ilana Goldberg was branded by family court as yet another victim of Parental Alienation Syndrome. Goldberg, however, insists that she was never a victim of the controversial syndrome, which in her case concludes that Goldberg’s mother alienated her from her father through unwarranted denigration. Goldberg claims that the negative view she had of her father did not stem from anything her mother may have said, but instead because her father was an abusive alcoholic. Unable to testify, at age 15 she explained this in a letter to her family court judge, begging for her mother to be assigned full custody. The judge ignored the letter, scolding Goldberg’s mother for allowing her daughter to become “too empowered.” The judge ruled for joint custody. “Parental Alienation Syndrome underestimates the intelligence of minors,” says Goldberg, now 19 years old. “If somebody had listened, my case would have had different results.” Custody rulings in the family court system are to be based on the best interest of the child. However, this conclusion is ultimately decided by the judge and can become further complicated by claims of Parental Alienation Syndrome, which is already itself fueling an ongoing controversy within the scientific community.  Hard copy

Tuesday, June 25, 2013        Why the Official Rejection of PAS Matters by Barry Goldstein  see LInk here Link Excerpts Section “Conclusion There was never any valid justification to permit the use of PAS by any name in the custody courts. The fraudulent use of PAS has been responsible for destroying the lives of hundreds of thousands of children. This never should have been permitted by the courts, but at the same time the courts are extremely defensive to criticism of their errors and are unlikely to acknowledge past mistakes”.

“Accordingly, the publication of the DSM-V should be treated as a great opportunity to ask courts to reconsider the misuse of alienation theories. The other side will not make judges aware that their favorite toy has been completely discredited. The attorneys for protective mothers must make the courts aware of this decision and start a discussion of what this means to standard court practices. Courts are not permitted to accept evidence about scientific theories that are not based on authoritative and accepted scientific research. The decision on the DSM is fundamentally incompatible with the continued use of alienation theories. This is particularly true when the theories are used to deny the primary attachment figure a normal relationship with the child or to prevent a full investigation of abuse complaints. We need to tell the courts about this and file complaints against any professionals who continue to support PAS by any name now that it has been officially discredited”   Hard copy

Opinion Child abuse: when family courts get it wrong States must reform a system that too often awards custody to the abusive parent. By Kathleen Russell OCTOBER 14, 2009 Link Excerpts “Meanwhile, the child's other parent, commonly referred to as the "protective parent," is typically demonized by court professionals as an "alienator" for bringing evidence of child abuse to the court's attention.

This happens because the reigning paradigm in family courts across the country is an unscientific, discredited theory known as "Parental Alienation Syndrome," or PAS.

PAS and its many derivatives suggest that the parent who asks the court to protect his or her child by limiting the alleged abuser's access to that child is "alienating" the child from the other parent. Hard copy

Parental Alienation Syndrome: Child Abuse or Child Abuser Scapegoat?             Lay, Rebecca. (2009) link Excerpts “I think PAS Awareness Day is a step back for the safety of children in this country,” says Dr. Joyanna Silberg, executive vice president of the Leadership Council on Child Abuse and Interpersonal Violence. “It’s 100 percent clear to me that this theory is being used by child abusers.” She notes that the use of Parental Alienation Syndrome in child custody court cases often puts children into the custody of their abusers. When a child is deemed to have PAS, the testimony of that child is often discounted as a symptom of PAS, rather than proof of the abuse that the child actually may be suffering from.

“There are times when kids are caught in the middle. There are a lot of judges who are sympathetic to that,” says John Hrabe, a volunteer spokesman for Justice for Children. In these cases, Hrabe says that parents become desperate in their custody cases and “latch on to a pseudo-scientific theory.

” Parental Alienation Syndrome is often used as a defense in the courtroom despite its absence from the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. It is also not recognized by the American Medical Association or the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges.  Hard copy

Mom termed 'parental alienator' wins rare vindication in courts

By TROY ANDERSON, Staff Writer POSTED: 06/18/06, 12:01 AM PDT Link Excerpts “Former San Fernando resident Irene Jensen battled the family court and child protective systems for 13 years to save her daughter from an allegedly abusive father.

But the system turned the tables on her: Jensen found herself accused of making up the allegations and in the glare of the national spotlight when she was labeled a "parental alienator."

Her daughter, Tiffany-Ann Carver, now 17, spent years in the custody of her father, a Hawthorne city employee who denies Jensen's claims.

Tiffany eventually ran away and sought the assistance of the Alliance for Children's Rights, which helped place her in a foster home. Late last year, a Los Angeles judge returned Tiffany to the custody of her mother, court records show.

Experts said Jensen is believed to be the only mother accused of "parental alienation syndrome" who has regained custody of her child before age 18.               Hard copy

Vincent, L. (Feb. 8, 2003). Little girls lost? WORLD magazine.            (Volume 18; Number 5) Link Excerpts  Page 2 In Ms. Faller's 1995 study, 40 parents who raised sexual-abuse allegations-none of which were judged knowingly false-experienced negative sanctions, including losing custody to the alleged offender, limitation or loss of visitation, and court admonitions not to report alleged abuse again to the court, child protective services, or police.

Such cases often turn on Dr. Gardner's "parental alienation syndrome." WORLD reviewed histories on 13 PAS cases-in California, Texas, New York, North Carolina, Georgia, Utah, and other states. These cases had something in common: documentation. In all 13 cases, court records show the mother had already been found a fit parent, and was in most cases already the primary custodial parent. In all 13, court-appointed psychologists ignored children's testimony of sexual abuse, and in some cases, medical findings of abuse, and even previous sex-offender violations. And in all 13 cases, court-appointed mediators concluded that the mothers had inculcated PAS in their children and recommended Dr. Gardner's standard prescription: to strip custody from the mother and place the child with the father for "deprogramming."  Hard copy

Custody fight: Documentary sheds light on system that lets children suffer at the hands of abusive fathers

By BOB PORT October 16, 2005 Albany Times Union

Link Excerpts “Custody case law in New York , as in many states, enshrines one of the most ridiculous legal principles ever to evolve, called "parental alienation."

“Conceived by the late Columbia University psychiatrist Richard Gardner, "parental alienation syndrome" was a proposed name for a mental illness in which a mother, to punish her ex-mate, alienates kids against dad by coaching them to allege abuse.”

“The antidote for this alleged insanity, Gardner theorized, is to give the kids to dad, thereby counteracting mom's alienation by removing the kids from her control. It's the ultimate mind game in custody battles. We can almost never prove what's really true in an abuse allegation, and a bald abuse allegation, even if false or exaggerated itself, can be symptomatic of a deeper, less severe pattern that is true. The victim of abuse thus becomes the perpetrator and a villain can win. Gardner 's ideas became a playbook for fathers using litigation to punish ex-lovers”.

“Gardner 's colleagues rejected the addition of his theory to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, the peer-reviewed handbook of mental illnesses. His work has been debunked by the American Psychological Association and others. Parental alienation syndrome is junk science”.

“Yet in a monument to ignorance, New York courts continue to recognize "parental alienation" as if it were some psycho-law of medicine and continue to give kids to oppressive, if not abusive fathers simply when mothers make accusations. It's as if judges are years behind in reading social science literature”.   Hard copy

Girl, Interrupted  Alanna Krause believes that much of her hellish childhood could have been avoided. Now she's suing her father, her therapist, and her lawyer in an effort to prove it. How did it come to this?   By Bernice Yeung                               Wednesday, Dec 18 2002

Link Excerpts “But Alanna's attorney, Richard Ducote, believes Alanna's case shines a spotlight on how some family courts fail to listen to children. "What we're doing with this case is we're holding [the defendants] to the same standards as everyone else," Ducote says. "If we forgot Alanna was a child, and we put her in this situation as an adult, she would be suing someone who beat her up and who denied her a relationship with her mother, and an attorney and a therapist who sold her out. The same [legal] standards should be applied to kids. There is this illusion that we are protecting kids, while we're actually doing so much damage to them."

It is an expensive form of therapy, but Alanna says the lawsuit will help her heal. "I had no rights," Alanna has written of her experience in Marin family court. "I felt like I was witnessing the proceedings from the wrong side of soundproof glass. Children are not parties in divorce proceedings -- we are property to be divided. Yet children are people, too. As citizens, we must be afforded our human and legal rights. And when those adults who are supposed to speak for us fail, we need some recourse." Hard copy

CUSTODY SWITCH BY JILL KRAMER Pacific Sun, October 24-3 Link Excerpts “If you suspect that your ex-spouse is molesting your child, don’t report it to authorities. If you do, you risk losing custody to your child’s molester. Law professor John Myers has seen it happen time and again. “Abuse may have occurred, but the allegations can’t be substantiated,” says Myers, who teaches at the McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento. “The reaction often is, ‘Ooh, an allegation of abuse that comes up in family court? That must be a lie.’” When family court judges hear unproven accusations, they often assume that the accusing parent is lying in order to smear the other parent. That’s a crime punishable by loss of custody. And, when it comes to child molestation, there rarely is any proof. The horrific consequence is that sometimes children are placed in the custody of their abusers. There is a theory behind this madness. Dubbed “parental alienation syndrome,” it supposedly occurs during custody disputes when an angry parent brainwashes the child into believing that the other parent is malevolent -- often by making false allegations of sexual abuse. The theory, which almost always is applied to mothers, was formulated by Dr. Richard Gardner, a highly controversial New Jersey child psychiatrist. Gardner has shocked many of his professional colleagues with the tolerant views of pedophilia and incest he expressed in his early writings . See link for rest of article ”  Hard copy

Biased Family Court System Hurts Mothers By: Garland Waller                                   September 5, 2001

Link Excerpts “In fact, a pilot study in the early 1990s by the California Protective Parent Association and Mothers of Lost Children found that 91 percent of fathers who were identified by their children as perpetrators of sexual abuse received full or partial unsupervised custody of the children and that in 54 percent of cases the non-abusing mother was placed on supervised visitation”.

“One primary reason for what many consider a disastrous outcome, Ducote and other experts say, is the popularity of the theories of Dr. Richard Gardner, whose ideas are apparently more persuasive to judges than the testimony of battered women and victimized children”.

“Gardner's brainchild is Parental Alienation Syndrome. This is the name given for the practice of one parent saying disparaging things about the other parent in an attempt to alienate the child from the ex-spouse. This so-called syndrome is based on anecdotal evidence. Gardner's books on the subject are self-published, something that should give judges and experts pause, even though he does look good on paper”. Hard copy

F a m i l y L a w : Disorder  i n  t h e Courts Edited by : Helen Grieco Rachel Allen and Jennifer Friedlin 2006 © California National Organization for Women     95 pages Link Excerpts Section “Introduction By Helen Grieco, Rachel Allen and Jennifer Friedlin” Page 9    “ These groups have helped propagate bunk psychological syndromes like Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS), which is based on the unfounded “theory” that mothers regularly brainwash their children to say that they have been abused by their fathers. PAS is then used as a legal strategy to justify taking children from their mothers, while subverting evidence of abuse by fathers. Fathers’ Rights groups claim that fathers are discriminated against in family courts, receiving custody of children only a small percentage of the time. The truth is, however, that when fathers fight for custody, they get it 50 to 70 percent of the time. Sadly, all too often they get custody even when it is not in the best interest of the child”.  Hard Copy


BY SARAH CHILDRESS ON 8/21/07 AT 1:51 PM  NEWSWEEK Link ExcerptsGenia is one of many parents nationwide who have lost custody due to a controversial concept known as parental alienation. Under the theory, children fear or reject one parent because they have been corrupted or coached to lie by the other. Parental alienation is now the leading defense for parents accused of abuse in custody cases, according to domestic-violence advocates. And it's working. The few current studies done on the subject consider only small samples. But according to one 2004 survey in Massachusetts by Harvard's Jay Silverman, 54 percent of custody cases involving documented spousal abuse were decided in favor of the alleged batterers. Parental alienation was used as an argument in nearly every case. Link

Friday, May 4, 2012  Department of Justice Report Demands Custody Court Reforms Part II by Barry Goldstein Read Part I:  CLICK HERE Link Excerpts Section “Challenging Evaluators”  Last paragraph “ If the evaluator issues a report based on PAS or even alienation, there is strong research in the Saunders’ study to challenge it.  We can start by asking the evaluator if he agrees that sex between adults and children is improper.  Then ask if there is any research not based on the belief that sex between adults and children can be appropriate (this is what PAS is based on), that “alienating” behavior creates a safety risk.  Are you aware the DOJ study found that PAS, including by any other name has no scientific basis?  Are you aware PAS was rejected for inclusion in the DSM-V because it has no scientific basis?  Are you aware that the Saunders’ study found that evaluators with inadequate training tended to believe the myth that women frequently make false allegations but alienation theories, particularly those used to separate children from their primary attachment figure are based on a belief that most dv and child abuse allegations by mothers are false?  Are you aware that evaluators are starting to lose their licenses for using PAS?  Do you know if that is because they are in affect creating a diagnosis that does not exist?  You can also ask questions comparing the harm of separating a child from their primary attachment figure with the harm of negative statements about the other parent.  Ask for any research findings because there is no scientific support for these standard biased practices”.  Hard Copy

Mother Seeks Courtroom Reform for Sexually Abused Children and Protective Parents This interview appeared in the June 2013 issue of ABA Child Law Practice, published by the ABA Center on Children and the Law. © 2013 American Bar Association. All rights reserved. Visit for more information. National Partnership to End Interpersonal Violence Across The Lifespan NPEIV Newsletter | November/ December 2015 Childhood Sexual Abuse

Link Excerpts section “You faced challenges while seeking justice for your daughter. What did you learn?””When the child resists going with the abuser and the mother asks for protection from family (divorce) court, the mother is labeled dangerous and considered to be alienating the child from the father. The “Parental Alienation Syndrome” is relied on heavily although it isn’t approved by the American Medical Association or the American Psychological Association, and is considered “junk science” that should not be allowed in courts. In my experience, judges ignore or minimize evidence of sexual abuse and do not allow abuse findings in court”.

Excerpts section What policy and legislative changes are needed to better protect child sexual abuse victims? ■ Recognize parents who are acting in good faith to protect their children and do not punish them.” “■ Discontinue use of alienation theories. Parental Alienation Syndrome is discredited by the scientific and legal communities.” see link for rest Hard copy here

Implications of the Kinsey Reports on Child Custody Cases How Junk Sex Science Created a Paradigm Shift in Society, Legislation and the Judiciary By Judith A. Reisman, Ph.D. Posted: August 15, 2005 Link Excerpts page 7 3rd paragraph section “Texas: A Case Study” “Many women have testified under oath regarding the forced removal of their children based on the scientifically inept theory of Parental Alienation Syndrome promulgated by Kinseyan-adherent Richard Gardner and his disciples. This suggests that few judges have read the following excerpt from the report of the Attorney General's Task Force on Family Violence”. “Judges should treat incest and molestation as serious criminal offenses.... Incarceration, whether in hospitals, treatment centers or prisons, is absolutely essential to the protection of the nation's children. The only true protection for children from a pedophile is incapacitation of the offender.25 “

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Family Courts Behind an Epidemic of Pedophilia & Judicial Abuse keith harmon snow First publication: 01 May 2012

Edits & Revision: 03 May 2012  Edits & Revision: 17 May 2012

Link Excerpts “ section “ PARENTAL ALIENATION SYNDROME JUNK SCIENCE “ “Further, many of these professionals openly adhere to the now discredited theories of Columbia University affiliated child psychiatrist Dr. Richard Gardner.  Amongst his many elaborate theories supporting pedophilia, Gardner developed a theory of a non-existent psychiatric disorder -- almost universally applied to silence protective mothers complaining about domestic or child sexual abuse -- called Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS)”."Once upon a time a handful of judges and other evil doers figured they could make a ton of money by selling children to their parents," says protective mother Anne D'Angelo, who a few years ago suffered the very same horrors that Sunny Kelley is suffering now.  "Some children would be kidnapped.  In the event of divorce the children would be held hostage, a carrot so to speak, for the parents to fight over.  Unfortunately, it was mainly abusive men who were willing to fight the mother for custody, and even they would not fight and spend if they weren't pretty sure they would win.  So in order to justify giving an abuser custody they came up with a theory call parental alienation syndrome, PAS.  Much like its predecessor false memory syndrome, which blames the therapist for implanting memories of abuse in their adult clients minds, parental alienation blames the mother for implanting false memories of abuse in her child's mind."  The PAS advocates found that not only could they clean both parents out financially, they could rake in millions in grant money to solve the problems they created.  This scheme was so lucrative they decided to franchise.  They formed an association known as the Association of Family Conciliation Councils (AFCC) to train other evil legal and psychological professionals to use their methods and PAS.  Then they founded a father's rights group known today as Children's Rights Council to teach the abusive litigants to use PAS and win custody.  Like most cancer given time, this has metastasized to the point where no child in America is safe.  Hard copy

Our Children Are At Risk and Their Health Is Endangered: What Are Their Legal Rights, How Do We Hold the Courts Accountable to Protect Them, and What Can Psychologists Do?                        Toby Kleinman, JD,

Link  Excerpts page "7 5th paragraph " Made-up syndromes and other theories of conjecture such as PAS and estrangement are often used as though they were relevant to determining whether or not a child has been abused. These self-identified experts fail to testify that the best way to determine abuse is through an interview with the child; neither do they testify that accepted practice does not require an interview with the accused parent. Despite the fact that there is no scientific evidence for PAS, these experts present alienation and/or estrangement as though they were alternative hypotheses to the actual occurrence of abuse. There is no science to show that either alienation of a child from a parent or estrangement between the two is even relevant to the issue of abuse. It is well settled that interview and examination of children themselves are the best determinants for whether or not abuse has occurred—indeed, it is not even necessary to evaluate the named offending parent. But psychologists who raise these alternatives often disparage the child’s own voice and the accuracy of a child’s report of abuse. In the process, community scientific standards for determining abuse get pushed aside. As a policy matter, psychologists can influence the courts to prevent accusations that divorcing parents who raise questions of abuse are alienating or causing estrangement. Such accusations are conjectural. They become attacks against the protective parent’s character and have no bearing, for example, on whether the accused parent has harmed the children. Research shows that most children do not lie about being abused by a parent. Yet frequently, psychologists who do not know this literature give opinions in court on these matters. "   Hard copy

Debating Richard Gardner This new program from Garland Waller, Excerpts see link Debating Richard Gardner

This new program from Garland Waller, the producer of the award-winning Small Justice: Little Justice in America's Family Courts,is designed to stimulate discussion and to help experts understand the controversy surrounding "Parental Alienation Syndrome," a theory invented by Dr. Richard Gardner that is misleading at best, and dangerous and damaging at worst. The video features an interview with Dr. Gardner, completed a few years before he committed suicide and clips from a television interview program, featuring Waller and Dr. Joy Silberg of The Leadership Council. Cutting back a forth between Gardner and the studio , viewers can see for themselves that Gardner's arguments are not only flawed, but extremely harmful to children and the protective parent, whether mother or father, who has raised the issue of possible sexual abuse.  Small Justice helped to raise awareness of alarming injustices in the family courts that seem ill prepared to handle matters that touch on criminal sexual conduct. This new program will add an important dimension to this on-going problem and hopefully lead to helpful solutions.  Hard copy

Obituaries Dr Richard A. Gardner Child psychiatrist who developed the theory of  Parental Alienation Syndrome Friday 30 May 2003 Andrew Gumbel Friday 30 May 2003

Link Excerpts “Gardner insisted the boys were lying as a result of brainwashing by their mother and recommended something he called "threat therapy". Essentially, the Grieco boys were told they should be respectful and obedient on visits to their father and, if they were not, their mother would go to jail. Shortly afterwards, 16-year-old Nathan Grieco, the eldest of the brothers, hanged himself in his bedroom, leaving behind a diary in which he wrote that life had become an "endless torment". Both Gardner and the court were unrepentant even after the suicide, and it was only after an exposé in the local newspaper that custody arrangements for the two surviving boys were changed”. “This "threat therapy" was part of a much broader theory of Gardner's known in family courts across the United States as "Parental Alienation Syndrome". The theory - one of the most insidious pieces of junk science to be given credence by US courts in recent years - holds that any mother who accuses her spouse of abusing the children is lying more or less by definition. She tells these lies to "alienate" the children from their father, a shocking abrogation of parental responsibility for which she deserves to lose all custody rights in favour of the alleged abuser”. Hard Copy

Can we bury this PAS thing already? May 27, 2015 by M Barnett  Dr Richard A. Gardner leaves a legacy of abuse- 58,000 Children a year are taken from safe loving mothers in the US each year and we have Richard Gardner to thank. Excerpts see link Child psychiatrist who developed the theory of Parental Alienation Syndrome is gone and so should this threat therapy…PAS we should consider a fraud upon the court. The purpose of hiring Richard Gardner to address these issues was to create a legal justification to sever maternal ties and create trauma bonding, insuring that the young witness will never disclose abuse again. While this theory was created as a criminal defense for fathers accused of sexual assault it is now widely used as the ‘go to’ defense by abusive and dangerous men in Domestic Violence Divorces to exert power and control over the family.  Such men make up the new ‘Dead Beat Dads’, who punish the mother by legally kidnapping the child through family court proceedings.   Their true intent is to forgo child support eventually collecting support from the outgoing primary attached mother who is victimized by a court system that rewards the bully and collects funds from fatherhood entitlement programs.  This fraud has been considered Junk Science by the American Psychological Association. This is why mothers should stop the proliferation of this term which has taken on international appeal in the Father Rights Movement.  PAS is intended to separate a mother and child. This term is used against mothers trying to protect their children. Every time we add our voices to the tools used against us we dig the sword in deeper. Hard copy

Statement Regarding Divorce Corp. from Judge Sol Gothard Judge Sol Gothard, JD, MSW, ACSW Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal State of Louisiana (ret) Link Excerpts “It is inconceivable that I am portrayed as agreeing with those in this film advocating “Mandatory Equal Parenting”!! Contrary to their assertions that false allegations of abuse are common, one of the main problems in the Family Courts, with regard to custody, is that when a parent reports suspected abuse, as they are mandated by law to do, the courts, all too often, shift the paradigm by accusing the reporting parent of “parental alienation syndrome.” Although this has been thoroughly discredited, the same dynamics occur in the courts, and those using the concept simply drop the “syndrome” part. Thus, the focus shifts from the possible abuse of a child to the parent alleging abuse”.

“Common sense dictates that, first and foremost, the alleged abuse be investigated. If proven to be made by up by a vindictive parent (and this does, of course happen, but in a small percentage of contested custody cases), let the courts then decide which parent is more capable. Any other approach endangers abused children”. Hard copy

Child Custody (1) after sexual revolution judith reisman.pdf 2009 Link

Excerpts page 3 "This seemingly irate faction has used "experts" like Drs. Richard Gardner, Ralph Underwager, and Warren Farrell, all three pedophile and incest advocates. Kinsey disciple Gardner

said incest was an unsexy mom's fault, Underwager praised pedophiles in the Dutch Paidika, Journal of Paedophila, and Farrell touted "Incest ….The Last Taboo," in Penthouse December 1977.

Gardner, (deceased) created the "Parental Alienation Syndrome," rejected by the Family Research Council along with the National Organization of Women, the American Psychiatric Association, the National Association for the Prosecution of Child Abuse, and the American Judges Association. Unfortunately the PAS claim that mothers who report incest are frigid and jealous is still cited by courts and social services in granting child custody to certified abusers"           Link

The Power to Protect By SafeKids Sunday Jul 13, 2014 · 2:40 AM CST By Cindy Dumas, M.A., Director Safe Kids International

Link Excerpts First paragraph““Court licensed abuse” is fundamentally about power. The epidemic of Family Court judges granting custody to, i.e. licensing, violent or sexually abusive fathers, while severely punishing “protective mothers” with loss of custody, visitation, jail, sanctions, etc., is principally about power—the power that the Power Elite confers upon fathers through judges. Any activism not focused on correcting this disparity of power cannot ultimately result in any significant numbers of children protected, as it is overwhelmingly mothers who are powerless to protect them.

Excerpts 13th paragraph “Dr. Richard Gardner introduced a scientific-sounding theory to deflect blame onto mothers: "parental alienation syndrome". This theory posits that vindictive mothers coach children to lie about sexual abuse in order to alienate them from the father. Fathers’ Rights activists, the right hand men of the Old Boys, came onto the scene and pushed this theory heavily as well as legislation which makes it even easier for them to wrest custody away from primary caregiving moms. They have successfully employed both overt and covert strategies to achieve their goal of keeping power and control with the father”. hard copy

Courts vs Kids- part 3  Stop Abuse Campaign A look at the good research that protects kids at court, and why it's rarely usedBy Barry Goldstein Link  Excerpts “In contrast, Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) was concocted by Richard Gardner, based on no research, only his personal experience, beliefs and biases. Among his beliefs are several public statements to the effect that sex between adults and children can be acceptable. PAS was rejected for inclusion in the DSM-V despite aggressive lobbying by abusers and the cottage industry of professionals that support them. The DSM is the compendium of all valid mental health diagnoses.  PAS was not included because there is no scientific basis to support it. PAS has been rejected by every legitimate professional organization including the American Psychiatric Association, American Psychological Association and the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges. Nevertheless, PAS (often by other names) has been permitted in many courts and its poison has undermined the entire court system while destroying the lives of thousands of children”.  “Some of the good judges interviewed for the Bartlow chapter said they didn’t think any court would use PAS anymore, but we continue to learn about dangerous outcomes where other judges use it, sometimes by another name”.  Hard copy

Malpractice & Licensing Pitfalls for Therapists: A Defense Attorney's List Brandt Caudill, Jr., Esq. section  Use of Inappropriate Syndrome Testimony Malpractice & Licensing Pitfalls for Therapists: A Defense Attorney's List Brandt Caudill, Jr., Esq.

Excerpts section

Use of Inappropriate Syndrome Testimony

As early as September of 1989 Dr. Gary Melton and Susan Limber in an article entitled "Psychologists' Involvement in Cases of Child Maltreatment" [American Psychologist Vol. 44, No. 9, pp. 1225-1233] commented on the inappropriate use by therapists of syndromes that are not found in the various versions of Diagnosis and Statistical Manual. There have been a proliferation of such syndromes over the last several years. At this point using syndromes which are not appropriately researched or acknowledged by the profession is below the standard of care. Among the syndromes which are controversial and which should not be represented as accepted in the therapist community are Child Sexual Abuse Accommodation Syndrome, Parental Alienation Syndrome, [Wiederholt v. Fischer 169 WIS 2d 524, 45 N.W. 2d 442 (1992)], False Memory Syndrome, and Malicious Mother Syndrome.        Hard copy

Criminal Rewards: The Impact of Parent Alienation Syndrome on Families Andraé L. Brown Excerpts section "Call to Advocacy page 395 “If you are not familiar with families who are involved in PAS cases, you may not believe

that these types of egregious acts occur. While listening to the stories of women and children, I have felt overwhelmed and dumbfounded because the deck seems to be stacked against truth and justice. Ironically, the horrific abuses that occur in the marital relationship are comparable to the systematic oppression that is sanctioned by the state through the family courts after divorce. The legal system and its officers create kangaroo courts in which civil liberties and human rights are arbitrarily violated (Waller, Waller, & Shin, 2001). There is no oversight and accountability for judges, lawyers, and mental health professionals who collude with the batterers and abusers. The need for a nationwide policy that bans PAS from family courts is long overdue. In 2006, the National Organization of Women moved toward this goal by denouncing PAS and resolving that any professional whose mission involves the protection of the rights of women and children denounce its use as unethical, unconstitutional, and dangerous. Social workers and other social justice advocates who are compelled to take action should, therefore, educate themselves about the perils of PAS and validate the experiences of, and create safe spaces, for victims of this oppression to speak their truth. Furthermore, there must

be a concerted effort to challenge the agents of the family courts and mental health professionals to stop perpetuating the abuse and violence against women and children. This is a call for advocacy and social change.      Hard copy


Volume 16, Number 6, 2003 Parental Alienation Syndrome: What Professionals Need to Know Part 1 of 2                            By Erika Rivera Ragland 1 & Hope Fields2 Excerpts section" Other Weaknesses: Lack of Peer Review and Recognition by DSM-IV"

Dr. Gardner mostly self-published and thus did not generally subject his theory to the peer review process.17 Moreover, PAS is not recognized by any professional associations,18 including the American Psychiatric Association. PAS is also not included within the DSM-IV.

It is also worth noting that Dr. Gardner often expressed disdain for child abuse professionals, labeling them “validators,” theorizing that greed and desire for increased business prompted some sexual abuse allegations, and speculating that parents and professionals alike made some false allegations because “all of us have some pedophilia within us.”19           Hard copy

National District Attorneys Association NATIONAL CENTER FOR PROSECUTION OF CHILD ABUSE Volume 16, Number 7, 2003 Parental Alienation Syndrome: What Professionals Need to Know Part 2 of 2 By Hope Fields1 & Erika Rivera Ragland2

Excerpts see section Conclusion

"PAS is an unproven theory that can threaten the integrity of the criminal justice system and the safety of abused children. Prosecutors should educate themselves about PAS and be prepared to argue against its admission in court. In cases where PAS testimony is admitted, it is a prosecutor’s responsibility to educate the judge and jury about the shortfalls of this theory. As more criminal courts refuse to admit PAS evidence, more protection will be afforded to victims of sexual abuse in our court system."     Hard copy

Overview of Dr. Richard Gardner's Opinions on Pedophilia and Child Sexual Abuse Richard A. Gardner, M.D., is the creator of the creator and main proponent for Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) theory. Prior to his suicide, Gardner was an unpaid part-time clinical professor of child psychiatry at the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia University . He made his money mainly as a forensic expert.

PAS was developed by Dr Richard Gardner in 1985 based on his personal observations and work as an expert witness, often on behalf of fathers accused of molesting their children. Gardner asserted that PAS is very common and he saw manifestations of this syndrome in over 90% of the custody conflicts he evaluated--even when abuse allegations are not raised (Gardner, 1987, p. 67).1 Gardner (September 6, 1993) claimed that PAS is "a disorder of children, arising almost exclusively in child-custody disputes, in which one parent (usually the mother) programs the child to hate the other parent (usually the father)."2

Gardner 's theory of PAS has had a profound effect on how the court systems in our country handle allegations of child sexual abuse, especially during divorce. Gardner has authored more than 250 books and articles with advice directed towards mental health professionals, the legal community, divorcing adults and their children. Gardner 's private publishing company, Creative Therapeutics, published his many books, cassettes, and videotapes.3 Information available on Gardner 's website indicates that he has been certified to testify as an expert in approximately 400 cases, both criminal and civil, in more than 25 states.4 Gardner 's work continues to serve as a basis for decisions affecting the welfare of children in courtrooms across the nation. He is considered a leading authority in family courts and has even been described as the "guru" of child custody evaluations.4

Because Gardner 's PAS theory is based on his clinical observations--not scientific data--it must be understood in the context of his extreme views concerning women, pedophilia and child sexual abuse. see link  warning extreme views                                                                           Hard copy

National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges Family Violence Department A Judicial Guide to Child Safety in Custody Cases Link Excerpts page 12-13 "C. [§3.3]” A Word of Caution about Parental Alienation 34 Under relevant evidentiary standards, the court should not accept testimony regarding parental alienation syndrome, or “PAS.” The theory positing the existence of PAS has been discredited by the scientific community. 35 In Kumho Tire v. Carmichael, 526 U.S. 137 (1999), the Supreme Court ruled that even expert testimony based in the “soft sciences” must meet the standard set in the Daubert case. 36 Daubert, in which the court re-examined the standard it had earlier articulated in the Frye 37 case, requires application of a multi-factor test, including peer review, publication, testability, rate of error, and general acceptance. PAS does not pass this test. Any testimony that a party to a custody case suffers from the syndrome or “parental alienation” should therefore be ruled inadmissible and stricken from the evaluation report under both the standard established in Daubert and the earlier Frye standard. 38 The discredited “diagnosis” of PAS (or an allegation of “parental alienation”), quite apart from its scientific invalidity, inappropriately asks the court to assume that the child’s behaviors and attitudes toward the parent who claims to be “alienated” have no grounding in reality. It also diverts attention away from the behaviors of the abusive parent, who may have directly influenced the child’s responses by acting in violent, disrespectful, intimidating, humiliating, or discrediting ways toward the child or the other parent”. see link for rest Link              Hard copy

Dr. Richard Gardner: A Review of His Theories and Opinions  on Atypical Sexuality, Pedophilia, and Treatment Issues

by Stephanie J. Dallam, RN, MSN, FNP Reference: Dallam, S. J. (1998). Dr. Richard Gardner: A review of his theories and opinions on atypical sexuality, pedophilia, and treatment issues. Treating Abuse Today, 8(1), 15-23 Link Excerpts “Introduction”

“Richard A. Gardner, M.D., is a prominent forensic expert with an extensive career of evaluating children, especially during custody disputes between parents. He is considered a leading authority in the field and has even been described as the "guru" of child custody evaluations (Quinn, 1991). Gardner has developed numerous theories and instruments on issues related to children and his work continues to serve as a basis for decisions affecting the welfare of children in courtrooms across the nation. In 1992, an article in The National Law Journal described Gardner "as one of the most prominent--some say dangerous--voices espousing the 'backlash' theory that there is an epidemic of vindictive women falsely accusing fathers of child sex abuse to gain leverage in child-custody disputes" (Sherman, 1993, p. 1). While Gardner 's theories about mass sexual abuse hysteria have been widely criticized, his views on bona fide child sexual abuse and his treatment recommendations for working with incestuous families have largely been ignored. This article provides an in-depth exploration of Gardner 's views on pedophilia and his therapeutic approach to working with families in which a child has been molested by a parent.” see link for rest of paper Link                                       Hard copy

Human Rights Council Twenty-ninth session  Agenda item 3 Promotion and protection of all human rights, civil,political, economic, social and cultural rights, including the right to development   Report of the Working Group on the issue of discrimination against women in law and in practice   Mission to Spain* ** United NationsA/HRC/29/40/Add.3

Link Excerpts see “74. Additionally, according to numerous stakeholders, the so-called “parental alienation syndrome” continues to be used to withdraw child custody from the mother and to grant it to a father accused of domestic violence claiming custody on this basis, in many cases with the support of a fathers’ rights organization. According to the stakeholders, “parental alienation syndrome” is still a recognized condition, despite the ruling issued in 2013 by the General Council of the Judiciary, which in its guide clearly rejected the validity of this pseudo-scientific theory and firmly opposed its use in cases of gender-based violence.   Hard copy

Source checking " concocted Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) -- a legal defense of child molesters -- as the means to conceal a pedophile "ring" operating through family courts" Excerpts from COMMENTARY ABOUT THE FEDERALLY FUNDED STUDY TO MEASURE PORN AROUSAL by Cindy Ross © December 31, 2002 Link Excerpts from COMMENTARY ABOUT THE FEDERALLY FUNDED STUDY TO MEASURE PORN AROUSAL by Cindy Ross © December 31, 2002 Link  Excerpts “Another key link between the NIH female sexual arousal study and the 'closet' pedophile agenda, is Michael Lamb of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. Lamb, who heads the Section on Social and Emotional Development, is closely affiliated with the pro-pedophilia "experts" whose materials are used by fathers' group members in their own court cases. Lamb writing's may give the appearance of neutrality, but they are carefully crafted to provide justification for disqualifying evidence of pedophilia”. “Lamb is associated with Ralph Underwager, one of the "psychologists" identified in the Robert Knight report, who -- in an interview in Paidika (a Dutch pedophile publication), with his wife Hollida Wakefield -- stated”:

"Pedophiles can boldly and courageously affirm what they choose. They can say that what they want is to find the best way to love...Pedophiles can make the assertion that the pursuit of intimacy and love is what they choose. With boldness they can say, "I believe this is in fact part of God's will." See Paidika Interview: Hollida Wakefield and Ralph Underwager. .”

“Lamb's connection to Underwager comes primarily through the Children's Rights Council (CRC), the "umbrella" organization of the fathers' rights movement. CRC, formerly called National Council for Children's Rights, is also affiliated with other pedophiles and incest advocates, including Richard Gardner -- who coined the term PAS -- and Warren Farrell”.

“Richard Gardner's bizarre writings include discussions of sexually inhibited wives being the cause of 'false child abuse allegations', because mothers are envious of fathers' ability to relate sexually to others, including their children. Gardner believes that both women and children should be taught to use vibrators to make them less "up tight" about sex” .    Hard copy             source checked here Link

Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS)—Pseudoscientific Theory Used Against Survivors in Court—Is Rejected from the DSM-V Joan Meier, Professor of Clinical Law, George Washington University Law School y Winter/Spring 2013 Posted on March 27, 2013 by jpadmin National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma & Mental Health  Link Excerpts page 8 ” In the last year, it was decided that Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) and its offspring (Parental Alienation Disorder) will not be included in the Fifth Edition of the Physicians’ Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-V). This is very good news for victims of abuse. PAS or parental alienation (PA) was invented as a quasi-scientific theory to refute allegations of abuse by one parent against another in the context of a custody battle. The theory starts from the obvious premise that separating parents are often derogatory about each other to the children. But the theory spins into ideology when it suggests that where children are reluctant to spend time with their noncustodial father, they have been essentially brainwashed by an “alienating” mother. PAS/PA labeling of the mother is routinely used in court to reverse the focus from whether the abuse claims are true, to the assumption that a mother’s abuse claims are themselves a kind of emotional abuse (i.e., “alienation”). PAS/PA thinking thus is used to not only silence a parent who accuses the other of domestic violence or child sexual or physical abuse but also the children’s own feelings and reports, all of which are attributed to the mother’s nefarious or pathological efforts. Sadly, PAS/PA (and similar) labeling has been implicated in the majority of cases where a court has ordered that an abusive parent be given unsupervised access to children.

Had the DSM-V included PAS or PAD it would have added enormous financial incentives to the already existing financial remuneration for the many mental health professionals who evaluate and testify about parental alienation in custody litigation”. see link  for rest            hard copy   

Breaking her silence: Protective Parent Systemic Abuse  Rev. Dr. Alice L. Belcher 11th September 2013 Link  Excerpts “ Under the State of Wisconsin mandatory arrest law, abusers are manipulating police contacts so that the victim is being arrested when she calls the police for help or if she tries to defend herself or her children from abuse.  By their own numbers, the State of Wisconsin bureaus of child welfare are finding overwhelmingly non-substantiation of child abuse cases reported to them (historically over some 40,000 cases annually.)  Using these “un-substantiated” findings by the bureaus of child welfare, abusers are then going into our family courts, pleading the unrecognized psychological phenomenon of parental alienation (PAS) against the victim in family court, as factual evidence against her to gain custody of her children away from her; all which continues the abusers power and control and abuse of the victim and her children.

As a Survivor, I sought the protection of the family court for myself and family, only to go from the skillet into the fire. Instead of receiving protection when I spoke out against the abuse, the court with the assistance of GAL’s and psychologist (who found no evidence of my ever harming my child), took away my custody and placement of my child. It would be several years before I had any “real-time” with my child; for all intent and purpose, my parental rights and access to my pre-school age child was “quasi” taken away for no reason, which I and my child enjoyed since his birth.  As a Survivor, I dared to speak out about the domestic violence in court, seeking its help to protect me and my child.  I represent just one of countless women who are losing or have lost their children this way in family court in Wisconsin and across this country, when seeking protection for themselves or for their children through the manipulative and abusive legal, psychological and economically abusive tactics, employed by abusers inside of the protective systems, designed to protect victims and their children.  These very systems which were designed to protect women and children are being used against women and children and are rewarding abusers in Wisconsin and across this country and it must be exposed, addressed and corrected.  Women and their children are being re-victimized through this systemic abuse and it must stop. Hard copy

CONVENTION AGAINST TORTURE AND OTHER CRUEL, INHUMAN, OR OTHER DEGRADING TREATMENT OR PUNISHMENT SHADOW REPORT ON INTIMATE PARTNER ABUSE AND SEXUAL ASSAULT IN THE UNITED STATES* Primary author: Associate Professor Margaret Drew, University of Massachusetts School of Law.Contributors: Darakshan Raja, Washington Peace Center and Falling Walls Initiative Prof. Joan Meier, Domestic Violence Legal  Empowerment and Appellate Project; Attorney Lynn Hecht Schafran. National Judicial Education Program,Legal Momentum Link Excerpts page 8  “Abusive fathers obtain access to the children in several ways. One is to litigate against the mother until she is financially and otherwise exhausted. Another widely utilized strategy is to argue that the mother is alleging abuse because she wishes to “alienate” the children from the abusive father, usually out of pathology or vengeance. This so-called “parental alienation syndrome”, is an argument that preys on the double stereotype of women as liars and women as mentally ill. The “syndrome” has been debunked and deemed “invalid science” by the American Psychological Association. None the less, the label “alienation” continues to be purveyed widely by custody evaluators and guardians ad litem appointed by the family courts. These individuals are expected to be “neutrals” advocating for the best interests of the children. However, they are generally untrained and lacking experience in domestic violence or child abuse. Federally funded research has confirmed extensive anecdotal reports that such “neutrals” regularly misinterpret what they observe. They incorrectly view the mother’s concerns for safety as efforts to interfere with the father’s rights of access to the children. To many evaluators and judges, the “rights” of the father trump the safety of the mother and the children even where there is reason to fear that the father’s intentions toward the children are dangerous.”                     Hard copy

Mental health custody evaluators need to be removed from the family court system

Link Excerpts” Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) PAS is an alleged (and thoroughly discredited) “mental disorder” applied to one parent in a divorce-custody matter by the opposing party’s psychological expert in the following manner: “The child(ren) are fearful of or angry at Parent B (my client).  It appears that Parent A has been telling the child(ren) negative things about my client in an effort to make the child(ren) fear my client, refuse visitation with him, etc.  These efforts are proof that Parent A has PAS and so should not have custody of the child(ren).”  

“Use of this “diagnosis” sometimes obscures the fact that there may be documented reasons or logical foundations for the child(ren)’s fears or the parent’s concern, such as actual sexual abuse, domestic violence or the opposing parent’s criminal record”.  

“PAS has never been validated by any official body and, on the contrary, has been invalidated by numerous authorities, including the American Psychological Association, which stated: “Custody and visitation disputes appear to occur more frequently when there is a history of domestic violence. Family courts often do not consider the history of violence between the parents in making custody and visitation decisions.  In this context, the non-violent parent may be at a disadvantage and behavior that would seem reasonable as a protection from abuse may be misinterpreted as a sign of instability.  Terms such as ‘parental alienation’ may be used to blame the women for the children’s reasonable fear or anger toward their violent father.”[xxii]

“Dr. Paul Fink of Temple University's School of Medicine, called the theory dangerous:  "It was made up by one guy who spread it around.  No investigation was done, there was no research, and it's hurt a lot of women and children."[xxiii]CASES  see link  see page 8 hard copy

H. CON. RES. 182 Expressing the sense of Congress with respect to child custody, child abuse, and victims of domestic and family violence. IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES October 30, 1997 Link  Excerpts "Whereas the American Psychological Association's Presidential Task Force on Violence and the Family has found in a 1996 Presidential Report that Congress views as authoritative on questions of domestic violence, child abuse, and custody determination that--" "(1) fathers who abuse their children's mothers are more likely to dispute custody and visitation than are fathers who are not violent;" "(2) there is no reliable data to support the phenomenon of `parental alienation' syndrome, although courts and custody evaluators frequently use that term and other inappropriate terms to discount the children's fear in hostile and psychologically abusive situations; and" "(3) psychological evaluators not trained in domestic violence ignore or minimize the violence and give inappropriate pathological labels to women's responses to chronic victimization, including `parental alienation' to blame mothers for their children's reasonable fear or anger toward their violent fathers." "Whereas many courts and professionals use the baseless parental alienation syndrome to force mothers into joint or shared parenting arrangements or to give custody to fathers, especially when mothers try to protect themselves or their children from men who abuse them or their children;" see comment section for link to resolution  Link

Wolferts Sisters Face Possible Return to Alleged Abuser01/27/2016 02:26 pm ET  Hope LoudonActivist and writer Link Excerpts “Brittany Wolferts, now age 20, has been attempting to advocate for her sisters and corroborate their abuse allegations. In spite of her age, her opinions are still attributed by some to alleged brainwashing and Parental Alienation (the subject of the "Dr. Phil" episode).

Parental Alienation Syndrome is a controversial theory predicated on the belief that children can be "brainwashed" by one parent to hate an otherwise stand-up parent. The American Psychological Association has not accepted Parental Alienation, but judges are still using it to make custody decisions and order forced "reunification" with parents against whom children allege abuse. Critics believe that Parental Alienation claims are frequently made by one parent to discredit abuse allegations made by the child or the other parent.

The American Bar Association, the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, and The National District Attorneys Association have advised against giving credence to "parental alienation" claims in court because of the danger they pose to victims of domestic violence and child abuse. One conservative estimate suggests that courts place 58,000 children in the custody of abusers annually.  Hard copy

Child Custody Evaluations and Domestic Violence: New Research and Implications for Practice Daniel Saunders, Ph.D., Professor, University of Michigan School of Social Work, USA & Fulbright U.S. Scholar, Te Awatea Violence Research Centre, University of Canterbury, NZ  Presentation for the Research Presentation Series, Violence Research and Prevention Program, Griffith University, Mount Gravatt QLD, 20th April 2015   Link Link Excerpts section “The Many Systems-Level Traps for Survivors (Saunders, 2007)” Page 6  

C.2) If I leave and am reluctant to co-parent out of fear of past, present or future harm to myself or my child [e.g., if I want or need to relocate, keep my contact info confidential, insist on supervised visitation, am traumatized by the sight or voice of my ex] AND/OR  

C.3) If I report his threats or violence toward myself or my children, then:  

a) I will be called an “unfriendly, uncooperative parent" with increased odds I will lose my children to my abuser AND/OR

b) I will be accused of making “false allegations” of abuse and be punished AND/OR  

c) I will be labeled with “parent alienation syndrome”, and increase the odds I will lose my children to my abuser.  

Hard copy  


Child Custody Evaluators’ Beliefs About Domestic Abuse Allegations: Their Relationship to Evaluator Demographics, Background, Domestic Violence Knowledge and Custody Visitation Recommendations Daniel G. Saunders, Ph.D., Kathleen C. Faller, Ph.D., Richard M. Tolman, Ph.D. June 2012  Award Number: 2007-WG-BX-0013  Document No.: 238891

Link Excerpts page 23-24 section “Labeling Survivors as “Alienating Parents” “ Similar to the emphasis on cooperative parenting, use of the label “parent-alienation syndrome” (Gardner, 1998) or, more recently, “parental-alienation disorder” (Bernet, 2008; Bernet, von Boch-Galhau, Baker, & Morrison, 2010) can also place battered women in a no-win situation. Battered mothers are vulnerable to these labels when they make formal child abuse allegations or raise concerns about the possible abuse of the children by an ex-partner. Many child abuse professionals believe that mothers coach their children to make false allegations in contested custody disputes (Faller, 2007). As noted earlier, they may even face court sanctions and lose custody as a result of raising such concerns (Faller & DeVoe, 1995). However, research indicates that although false allegations may occur more frequently in divorce-access disputes, the non-custodial parent (usually the father), not the custodial parent (usually the mother) tends to make more false reports (Trocme & Bala, 2005). Practitioners who apply parent-alienation syndrome (PAS) or parent-alienation disorder formulations tend to automatically label a parent as an “alienator” without a thorough investigation of the allegations (Brown, Frederico, Hewitt, & Sheehan, 2000; Brown, Frederico, Hewitt, & Sheehan, 2001; Meier, 2009). As a result, battered mothers may be viewed as both pathological and abusive.

“Although reviews of court decisions and legal reviews generally find that “parent alienation syndrome” is not admissible in court testimony (Bruch, 2001; Dalton, Drozd, & Wong, 2006; Meier, 2009), there are notable exceptions. Bernet and colleagues documented 22 court cases in which parental alienation syndrome or disorder was permitted in court testimony (Bernet, von Boch-Galhau, Kenan, Kinlan, Lorandos, Sauber, Sood, & Walker, 2008). Recently, there have also been attempts to include parental alienation disorder in the DSM V (Bernet, et al.), and rebuttals of those attempts have appeared (Walker & Shapiro, 2010)”.     see link for rest Link                                                                                                  Hard copyChild

Anne Grant: Courts encourage protection of sex abusers                          By Anne GrantPosted May. 3, 2014 @ 12:01 am ExcerptsOur courts must close this loophole. When children allege sexual abuse by one parent, who retaliates by accusing the other parent of “alienation,” family court should recognize this as the equivalent of a SLAPP suit — “strategic litigation against public participation” — and refer that case to superior court for a full examination of the evidence.

Those who call the DCYF hotline when their children disclose abuse, as the law requires, deserve due process for their children and themselves. The state should gather evidence and discreetly make video recordings of children’s “excited utterances” in order to avoid the interminable questioning — such as Cheit describes — that traumatizes children and wrecks their credibility.

Legislators should use their oversight powers to examine abuses in DCYF’s administrative appeal process. Financial penalties, like those imposed for filing SLAPP-suits, could discourage this retaliation in custody cases and help to protect children, as originally intended in Pettinato.                                                                                 Hard Copy

How States Endanger Sexually Abused Children

Author:  Rev. Anne  Grant, M.A., M.Div.. Source: Volume 04, Number 01, Summer 2011 , pp.71-74(4) Link  Abstract:   When a child is abused within the family, the nonabusive parent may assume that state agencies will look after the best interest of the child. In many cases, they do. However, in some cases, agency caseworkers, guardians, and attorneys can do a great deal of damage. The author of this article, a retired minister, describes one case where state officials removed two sisters from the care of their non-abusive mother, put them in foster care, and eventually gave the abusive father custody of the younger child, despite allegations of sexual abuse.

Keywords: family court; parental alienation

Affiliations:  1: The Parenting Project.                                                                   

How States Endanger Sexually Abused Children    Author:  Rev. Anne  Grant, M.A., M.Div.. Source: Volume 04, Number 01, Summer 2011 , pp.71-74(4)


Tsimhoni Children Placed in Father's Custody After Controversial Court-Ordered "Therapy" 09/17/2015 12:52 pm ET  Hope LoudonActivist and writerLink Excerpts “According to an article in USA Today, the Tsimhoni children who were recently incarcerated for refusing to see their father who they claim is abusive have "successfully reunited" with him. The children--ages 9, 10, and 14--chose juvenile detention over parenting time with their father and spent more than two weeks in Children's Village before Judge Gorcyca removed them to camp in response to public outcry. She placed a gag order on the parties involved and ordered the children to "reunification therapy" designed to combat Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS). After the "therapy," often termed "deprogramming" because it assumes that the children's memories are the result of brainwashing not their actual experience, the children were ordered into their father's sole custody.                           

Parental Alienation Syndrome is a controversial diagnosis introduced by Richard Gardener in 1985. It is predicated on the belief that children can be "brainwashed" by one parent to hate an otherwise stand-up parent. It is frequently alleged by one parent to discredit abuse allegations made by the child or the other parent. The child's fear and rejection of the alienated parent is taken as evidence not of the abuse allegation, but of brainwashing by the favored parent.

The Tsimhoni children were court-ordered to the "therapy" program referred to as "The High Road to Reunification": one of several such programs in the country. On this page of the provider Dorcy Pruter's website, she describes her program as "NOT THERAPY" but "an educational and skill building workshop." Her credentials include a high-school diploma, personal experience, and her claim to being a "certified Conscious Co-Parenting, Custody and Reunification Coach" (whatever that means, but ostensibly she is "certified" by the Conscious Co-parenting Institute of which she isFounder and CEO).  See link for rest of story                                                                                        Hard copy of entire article here

Dr. Gardner's ghost still haunts Rhode Island By Anne Grant (about the author) OpEdNews Op Eds 12/25/2010 at 06:21:22 Link Excerpts “Psychiatrist Richard A. Gardner designed a stealth weapon in 1985 that he called "Parental Alienation Syndrome." A domestic-violence-denier, Gardner testified for hundreds of fathers and argued that mothers had "alienated" their children against them. Gardner also wrote that sexual relations between parents and children were natural. He told filmmaker Garland Waller that children who report abuse by their fathers should be threatened with a beating. He committed suicide in 2003, but his ghost still haunts our courtrooms. Here are three examples from cases I have been following:

In 2004, Warwick police charged a Family Court deputy sheriff with felony domestic violence when they found his girlfriend handcuffed in their kitchen with a broken jaw and eye socket. Already entrenched in litigation, the deputy sheriff was an often-unruly defendant in the same courtroom where he once kept order. He demanded custody of his ten-year-old daughter, who was terrified of him.

In the corridor during a break, David M. Tassoni, assistant to Chief Judge Jeremiah S. Jeremiah, Jr., told me he was searching for a psychologist who "understood parental alienation." Tassoni found Lori Meyerson, PhD, in a cramped country office and invited her to serve at Family Court, where she testified that the deputy sheriff was a "happy, calm and level person." She had never visited either parent's home when she recommended giving the father sole custody. General Magistrate John J. O'Brien, Jr., praised Meyerson's work and declared this case to be "as close as you can get to parental alienation." Link                     Hard copy

My name is Anne Stevenson and I am a policy consultant and journalist for the  mainstream national media offering testimony relevant to the Family Court Task Force Public Hearing on Child Custody on Thursday, January 9, 2014, before the State of Connecticut General Assembly.  Link Excerpts page 5“KEY ISSUES Court appointed professionals provide valuable services to the State and litigants in crisis which cost the State millions of dollars in tax revenues to provide on their behalf. ISSUES: Excerpts page 6 “• Using bogus, discredited theories like Parental Alienation Syndrome to facilitate dangerous custody switches. • Deliberately placing children in dangerous homes to facilitate unnecessary professional referrals, evaluations, treatment, misdiagnosis/lack of diagnosis. “


2. Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) Claims

• Coined the “Child molester’s legal defense of choice” the American Psychological Association has discredited and refused to include PAS in the DSMV because it is not a mental disorder.

• PAS was first “discovered” by pedophile apologist Dr. Richard Gardner, then promoted by prolific pedophile advocates and fathers rights advocates affiliated with the AFCC.

• Primarily used by pedophiles, violent offenders, abusers to falsely discredit, shift blame to victims who report their violent crimes.

• The American District Attorney’s Association has deemed use of PAS strategy in family courts “a real danger to the safety of America’s children. FOR MORE INFORMATION: see link pages 13-16  Link                                                                                       Hard copy click here

LawTeacher, UK. (November 2013). Supervised Visitation And Court Orders Law Essay. Retrieved from   Link Excerpts “Literature Review second paragraph”  Parental Alienation Syndrome is unproven theory that can threaten the safety of the abused child. Parental Alienation Syndrome is a theory that can threaten the criminal justice system’s integrity and that of the abused children. It is incapable of leading itself to hard data, this theory is untested and if unchallenged can have far-reaching consequences for the children that are seeking protection in the court of law. There should be self-education on the parts of the prosecutors and professionals, etc when parental alienation syndrome is confronted in the legal system.

3rd paragraph “Parental Alienation Syndrome has been used nationwide by batterers as a courtroom tactics to silence the abused children, and it is done by attempting to discredit these disclosures of abuse. The American Psychological Association does not recognize this theory as valid, also the American Medical Association don’t acknowledge it, Parental Alienation Syndrome is not accepted as a means of diagnosis in psychiatric cases and the mainstream psychological community rejects it. Parental Alienation Syndrome is a complete junk science, no valid research or empirical evidence to support this unproven theory. Parental Alienation Syndrome can be used unjustly by violent parents against the legal system. Custody and visitation disputes happens frequently when there is a history of violence in the home, the one factor that family prosecutors don’t consider is the history of violence between the parents in making custody and visitation decisions, the issue here is that the parent who is not violent may be at a disadvantage and behavior that would seem reasonable as a protection from abuse may be misinterpreted as a sign of instability”. Read more at Law Teacher:  Link                                                                             Hard copy


TEN WAYS TO KNOW THE CUSTODY COURT SYSTEM IS BROKEN Barry Goldstein Link Excerpts “Reason 6.      “Parental Alienation Syndrome:  PAS is a bogus theory created based on the personal biases of Dr. Richard Gardner.  His books were self-published and never peer reviewed.  It is used only in domestic violence custody cases to prevent or shorten investigations of the father’s abuse.  PAS assumes that if a child expresses negative feelings about the father or doesn’t want visitation, the only possible explanation is that the mother alienated the child and the solution is to force the child to live with the abuser and have at most supervised visitation with the protective mother who has been the primary attachment figure for the child.  PAS is not recognized by any reputable professional organization and does not appear in DSM IV, which contains recognized diagnosis.  Dr. Paul Fink, past president of the American Psychiatric Association wrote a chapter for the book in which he demonstrates the invalidity of PAS.  Dr. Fink points out that Richard Gardner made numerous statements complaining that society takes child sexual abuse too seriously and that sex between adults and children can be appropriate.  This explains why PAS is so often used to give custody to fathers who have sexually abused their children.  Dr. Fink points out that psychologists are starting to lose their licenses for using PAS in evaluations.  They are, in effect diagnosing something that does not exist.  Thousands of the cases in which alleged abusers won custody was based upon the discredited PAS or PAS by a different name.  Any case in which “evidence” of PAS was allowed was likely wrongly decided”.Link                              Hard copy

Can 'Good Enough' Mothers Lose Custody of their Children to Violent and Abusive Men?

by Phyllis Chesler Argument & Critique   December 23, 2013 Link  Excerpts section “Has anything changed in regards to gender and custody?”

What has changed since I first started researching and writing about custody battles? Documented domestic violence does get factored in somewhat more than before. Where real assets exist, judges have the power to award more of them to mothers and children. Fewer mothers and fathers automatically lose custody or visitation because they are gay or because they have high-powered careers. However, a stronger pattern of evidence is emerging of battered women losing custody to their batterers. Children are being successfully brainwashed by fathers—but mothers are being accused of brainwashing. Worse: Children whom mandated reporters (a physician, a school nurse or teacher) report as having been sexually abused by their fathers, are usually given to those very fathers. As Goldstein (2010) has shown- Custody Courts are sending children to live with their abusers. The mothers of these children are viewed as having "coached" or "alienated" the children and, on this basis alone, are seen as "unfit" mothers.

The mothers of raped children, who are also described as "protective" mothers, are seen as guilty of "Parental Alienation Syndrome." The fact that this theory, first pioneered by Dr. Richard Gardner has been dismissed as "junk science," on multiple fronts for example by Wood (1994) Brown (2008) and Bruch (2001), does not seem to have brought about an end to the use of the theory. Many guardian ad litems, parenting counsellors, mediators, lawyers, mental health professionals, and judges still act as if this is a real syndrome and that mothers, not fathers, are mainly guilty in this regard. Yet use of Gardner's work has been linked to serious adverse consequences as for example in the suicide of sixteen-year old Nathan Grieco. (Morrison, 2009:49). Increasingly, the children themselves are now coming forward to tell their stories through organisations such as The Courageous Kids Network and Children Underground.” Link                                                                                                          Hard copy

JUDGE SAYS MOM LIED, SO SHE'LL LOSE CUSTODY PARENTAL ALIENATION LAW RIPPED FOR COSTING WOMAN HER TWINS BY BOB PORT NEW YORK DAILY NEWS    Sunday, May 30, 2004, 12:00 AM Link Excerpts “" see link For more than a decade, New York's higher courts have been embracing as gospel a concept psychologists still debate - that when one parent wrongly bad-mouths the other by alleging sexual abuse, children are better served if custody goes to the accused. The accused, the reasoning goes, can then counteract an accuser's damaging behavior. First termed "parental alienation" in 1985 by the late Columbia University psychiatrist Richard Gardner, who tried to define the behavior as a mental illness, the theory quickly became standard offense or defense in custody cases. Many New York judges bought it. Meanwhile, some researchers dismissed Gardner's theories as junk science while others moderated his ideas and refined them. Today, parental alienation has new names and more subtle definitions. Some states treat it as "generally accepted" science while some judges reject it as quackery. But in New York, many parents are stunned to learn parental alienation, as Gardner conceived it, is the law. The official remedy in one New York appeals ruling after another: Hand over the kids to the parent wrongly accused of perversion. Goldberg cited this line of cases in ruling against Marks. Abuse accusations are, as Mayerson puts it, "the atom bomb in custody cases” See link for rest of article. Link                                                                                        Hard copy

CUSTODY OUTCOMES FOR PROTECTIVE PARENTS IN CASES WITH CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE A Thesis Presented to the Faculty of California State University, San Bernardino  In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Arts in Psychology: General-Experimental by Nancy Marie Stuebner September 2011

Link Excerpts page 26-27“ Use of PAS in the courtroom has created considerable obstacles for those attempting to protect children from child sexual abuse. The harder a parent tries to protect their child from abuse, the more their efforts are taken as evidence against them as having PAS. As Attorney Richard Ducote (2002) opines, “. . . „PAS‟ is the criminal defense attorney’s dream, since the greater the proof of the crime, the greater the proof of the defense” (p. 141). Case in point for this statement can be found in the results from a study by Faller & Devoe (1995) which found parents attempting to protect their children from child sexual abuse more likely to suffer sanctions from the court. Furthermore, both the existence of medical evidence of abuse and frequency and severity of sexual abuse were significantly positively related to court sanctions against the protective parent”. Link                                                 Hard copy

What I Have Learned At The Courthouse” Richard Ducote, PC    05-01-2010

A Law Firm Dedicated To Protecting the Rights of Victims of Domestic Violence and Sexual Abuse Link Excerpts 1st paragraph After twenty years in family law courtrooms throughout the country, I confidently say that no woman, despite very abundant evidence that her child has been sexually molested by her ex-husband or that she has been repeatedly pummeled by the violent father of her child, can safely walk into any family court in the country and not face a grave risk of losing custody to the abuser for the sole reason that she dared to present the evidence to the judge and ask that the child be protected. Why is that? The fault does not lie with the “law’ except to the extent that judges are granted discretion under the law. No statute, codal provision, or court rule was ever designed for the purpose of hurting kids. If the law fails kids, the judges are failing kids”.

Excerpts  8th paragraph ““The handiest aspect of molesting children and beating women is that these crimes come with their own defense. The vindictive women made it up to get back at their men. In virtually every court allegation of these crimes, the defense is the same. In that regard, Richard Gardner’s foolish Parental Alienation Syndrome’ simply calls evidence that abuse did indeed occur evidence that the child was programmed by the ever-evil mother. And unfortunately for the victims, the abusers find willing accessories on the bench who will find those motivations lurking in the accuser's despite a total lack of any evidence to support those notions. Criminal court juries usually see through the bogus wall of desperation. Family court judges-the supposed gatekeepers of protection-instead typically help lay  the bricks”.    Link                                     Hard copy

Controversial disorder at center of bitter custody cases Friday, May 21, 2010 12:35pm

Susan Taylor Martin, Times Senior Correspondent  HARPER, Texas Link Excerpts “ Excerpts “Though the Hochs say they have successfully reconciled many kids and parents, it is impossible to verify their claims because the Rachel House is not regulated by any state or federal agency. And its approach is rooted in the controversial notion that the kids they see have a mental disorder: parental alienation syndrome.

The term was coined in 1985 by New York psychiatrist Richard Gardner. He described it as a disorder that causes a child to vilify a parent without reason. It often arises, he said, in bitter custody cases in which one parent brainwashes a child against the other parent by making false accusations of sexual abuse.

Proponents of the theory are pushing to have PAS included in the 2012 edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the "bible'' of the psychiatric field. So common is parental alienation, they say, that it could afflict 1 percent of American children. That means 750,000 children could potentially be deemed to have a mental disorder — more than are considered autistic. "We don't want to label kids unnecessarily, but these kids are not reacting in a normal way,'' says William Bernet, a Vanderbilt University psychiatrist. "We're talking about kids who have a false belief, a little like a delusion, that the other parent is an evil, dangerous person. To  me that looks and sounds like a mental disorder.''  But PAS is fiercely rejected by many child advocates. They call it "junk science'' and a tool used to help parents accused of sexual abuse — usually fathers — win custody of their kids. PAS "is not geared toward helping the diagnosed individual, but assisting a third party — an estranged parent — with a legal or personal goal, and thus appears more to reflect a political agenda than a bona fide mental health disorder,'' says psychologist Joyanna Silberg, executive vice president of the Leadership Council on Child Abuse and Interpersonal Violence. See link For rest of article                                                      Hard copy

10 Custody Myths and How to Counter Them Volume 4 July 2006   ABA Commission on Domestic Violence Excerpts see link MYTH 5: Abusive fathers don’t get custody. ¾ Abusive parents are more likely to seek sole custody than nonviolent ones… American Psychological Association, Violence And The Family: Report Of The American Psychological Association Presidential Task Force On Violence And The Family, (1996), and they are successful about 70% of the time. American Judges Foundation, Domestic Violence and the Court House: Understanding the Problem…Knowing the Victim, available at

“MYTH 7: Parental Alienation Syndrome (“PAS”) is a scientifically sound phenomenon. ¾ The American Psychological Association has noted the lack of data to support so-called "parental alienation syndrome," and raised concern about the term's use. American Psychological Association, Violence And The Family: Report Of The American Psychological Association Presidential Task Force On Violence And The Family, (1996), “

“MYTH 10: If a child demonstrates no fear or aversion to a parent, then there is no reason not to award unsupervised contact or custody. ¾ Children can experience “traumatic bonding” with a parent who abuses the child or their other parent, forming unusually strong but unhealthy ties to a batterer as a survival technique (often referred to as “Stockholm Syndrome”). Lundy Bancroft & Jay Silverman, The Batterer as Parent: Addressing the Impact of Domestic Violence on Family Dynamics, 39-40 (2002); Herman, Trauma and Recovery (1992).”   Excerpts see link                                Hard copy

Reproductive Rights, Parental Rights, and Family Violence: A Dangerous Intersection by Joan Dawson March 17, 2010 - 12:27 pm Link Excerpts “Parental alienation (PA) or parental alienation syndrome (PAS), the idea that a parent poisons the mind of the child(ren), is another idea introduced within the last two decades by fathers rights groups. Developed by Dr. Richard Gardner, PAS is highly controversial. Proponents claim parents (mostly mothers) turn their children against the other parent. Opponents claim PAS can mask child abuse. Indeed, research by Jay Silverman found 54 percent of cases with documented abuse were in favor of abusers. PAS was used in nearly every case.

In many of the cases I’ve cited, had the women tried to deny the father's access to the children, they could’ve been countered with “alienation” or the judge could’ve immediately transferred custody over to the more “friendly” parent.

In a case stemming from November, for example, Danielle Horvat fled with her three-and-a-half-year-old boy, Garrett Aguilar on a day that she had a dispute with the boy’s father, David Aguilar. She stopped at one domestic violence shelter. Despite the fact that police did not investigate her claims of abuse, the court immediately transferred custody over to the father, as they often do when parents flee. Excerpts see link for rest of article                                                                          Hard copy

NEWSWEEK September 25, 2006  Fighting Over the Kids – Battered Spouses Take Aim at a Controversial Custody Strategy  Losing Battle: A Judge Denied Shockome Custody of Her Kids By Sarah Childress Link 2nd paragraph Excerpts “Genia is one of many parents nationwide who have lost custody due to a controversial concept known as parental alienation. Under the theory, children fear or reject one parent because they have been corrupted or coached to lie by the other. Parental alienation is now the leading defense for parents accused of abuse in custody cases, according to domestic-violence advocates. And it’s working. The few current studies done on the subject consider only small samples. But according to one 2004 survey in Massachusetts by Harvard’s Jay Silverman, 54 percent of custody cases involving documented spousal abuse were decided in favor of the alleged batterers. Parental alienation was used as an argument in nearly every case. This year the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges denounced the theory as “junk science,” and at least four states have passed legislation to curtail its use in custody cases involving allegations of domestic violence. “It’s really been a cancer in the family courts,” says Richard Ducote, an attorney in Pittsburgh who has represented abuse victims in custody cases for 22 years. “It’s made it really difficult for parents to protect their kids. If you ask for protection, you’re deemed a vindictive, alienating parent.” Link                                               hard copy

Diane Wetendorf, Inc. Section ‘ Custody and Visitation” “Custody Disputes” Link Excerpts “Section “Parental Alienation” An abuser who claims that the mother is alienating the children from him can gain a huge legal advantage in a custody dispute. Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) was created as a defense tactic by fathers' rights attorneys to attack the credibility of mothers and undermine the testimony of children who accuse their fathers of sexual abuse. They claim a child's allegations of abuse are the result of a psychiatric disorder caused by the mother. They portray the protective parent — usually the mother — as an evil "alienator" who turns a vulnerable child against the other parent — usually the father. The "cure" is for the child to have greater contact with the abusive parent and little or no contact with the protective parent. PAS has been widely discredited as junk science by both mental health professionals and the courts. It has no scientific foundation. Some courts accept it anyway because it fits well with the "friendly parent" preference.

Many people believe mothers commonly use child sexual abuse allegations to gain an advantage in custody disputes and divorces. But in fact, sexual abuse allegations are not common during custody litigation. In those cases where the abuse was not substantiated, the allegations were made in good faith and based on genuine suspicions. When false allegations are raised, fathers are more likely to make false, unfounded or unsubstantiated allegations than mothers. Link                                      Hard copy

CHILD CUSTODY CASES, INCEST ALLEGATIONS AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE: Expert Insights and Practical Wisdom  By Joan Zorza, J.D.  Volume 4  July 2006 Quarterly E-Newsletter   ABA Commission on Domestic Violence Link Excerpts Last paragraph page 6 “It is always helpful to plan to refute parental alienation charges that most often follow incest allegations. (These often arise using other language, e.g., estrangement, parental alienation syndrome, unfriendly behavior.) The reality is that there is no scientific basis for parental alienation syndrome,16 and calling it by other names does not legitimate it.”

Excerpts page 7 First paragraph “Various court orders are always inappropriate in families where there is high conflict, domestic violence, incest or child abuse, and these include: mediation, couples counseling, parent education programs, and joint or shared custody (whether physical or legal custody). When courts fail to protect women and children, they encourage abusers to escalate their abuse, and this often leaves victims with no option but to flee or protect themselves, further risking an increase in the violence and the bias that the courts feel against women and child victims. If judges really want to help children, and even save lives of women and children, they could insure that: “ “1. they do not rely on unproven, gender biased theories like Parental Alienation “ see link for rest of article                  Hard copy

Scientific and Professional Rejections of Parental Alienation Syndrome  Domestic Violence Legal Empowerment and Appeals Project (DV LEAP) 2000 G St., NW Washington, DC 20052 Updated August 2013 DV LEAP Link Excerpts “Scientific and Professional Rejections of Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) Although long rejected by numerous experts, the concept of a "parental alienation syndrome" (PAS) continues to be invoked in custody or visitation litigation. Indeed, "alienation" claims are ubiquitous in custody cases where domestic violence or child abuse is alleged. PAS and/or alienation labels are often used successfully to re-cast parents alleging the other parent is abusive as "alienators" or bad parents themselves. The following summary shows that PAS has been rejected by numerous scientific and legal authorities. While "alienation" is often used in identical manners to PAS, some courts and evaluators treat the two labels as distinct. This document contains explicit rejections of PAS only, but it appears that much of the critique of PAS could also be applied to the way the label "alienation" is improperly used to deny abuse claims”. see link for rest of article                    Hard copy

Giardino, Angelo P. (2011) "Review: The Batterer as Parent: Addressing the Impact of Domestic Violence on Family Dynamics," Journal of Family Strengths: Vol. 11: Iss. 1, Article 29. Available at:

link Excerpts page three  “Again, in the author's words: “As we explain in this edition, we have grave concerns about the implications of this research trend for children. This period has also seen an exponential growth in the use of “parent alienation” theories and charges against battered mothers; modern society has come to a stage where it accuses battered mothers of parental unfitness for exposing their children to batterers and then, post separation, does an abrupt about-face to accuse them of unfitness for their efforts to limit their children’s exposure. In this context, we have felt it urgent to expand considerably our discussion of parental alienation theories” (page xv)”.

Link                                         hard copy

Full Brief - California Partnership to End Domestic Violence Full Brief - California Partnership to End Domestic Violence

Nov 22, 2011 - THE LEADERSHIP COUNCIL ON CHILD ABUSE AND ..... Syndromeand Parental Alienation, J. Child Custody, 6:232 ..... I Paul Fink, MD.

Hard copy

Book From Madness to Mutiny: Why Mothers are Running from the Family Courts--and what Can be Done about itAmy Neustein, Michael Lesher UPNE, 2005 - Social Science - 284 pages Link In this astonishing book, sociologist Amy Neustein and attorney Michael Lesher examine the serious dysfunction of the nation's family courts -- a dysfunction that too often results in the court's' failure to protect the people they were designed to help. Specifically, the authors chronicle cases in which mothers who believe their children have been sexually abused by their fathers are disbelieved, ridiculed or punished for trying to protect them. All too often the mother, in such a case, is deemed the unstable parent, and her children are removed from her care, to be placed in foster care or even with the father credibly accused of abusing them.

Employing a special form of sociological inquiry known as ethnomethodology, they show how judges, private attorneys, law guardians, child protective service caseworkers and court-appointed mental health experts on a day-to-day basis collaboratively produce a closed and claustrophobic family court setting that makes practical sense to the system's practitioners -- but looks like madness to everyone else. They also describe the social interactive work of mothers trapped inside the system. Faced with judicial rulings that seem to violate their most basic parental values, these mothers litigate furiously, take their stories to the press, go on hunger strikes, or turn fugitive with their children through a modern-day "underground railroad."

From Madness to Mutiny offers an overview of family court malfunction and the parental mutiny that results from it. The authors outline the new legal landscape that makes the madness possible and show how the system has failed to react to severe criticism from media and legislators. And they discuss ways to reform the family courts, with the goal of transforming them from instruments of punishment to true institutions of justice. Link

CONFIRMED: PROTECTIVE MOTHERS WERE RIGHT May 09 2010.A special Mother's Day Article By Barry Goldstein Link  Excerpts page 5 “There is no scientific basis to PAS and it is not recognized by any reputable professional organization. It is based on the myth that most allegations of abuse are false. Psychologists are starting to lose their licenses for using PAS because they are in effect diagnosing something that does not exist. As PAS has become more discredited, abusers and the professionals they pay to support them have started using PAS by other names such as parental alienation or just alienation. It the idea is to assume allegations of abuse must be wrong or to justify giving custody to the alleged abuser and supervised or no visitation to the protective mothers they are using the discredited PAS by another name”.

“Professor Garland Waller wrote a chapter about the failure of the media to cover the crisis in the custody court system. She writes about the tipping point when enough information reaches the public so that they will no longer tolerate frequent court mistakes that place children in jeopardy. It is believed this book can move us towards the tipping point and hope those committed to ending the injustice in the custody court system will consider some of the following actions to help us reach the tipping point”.  Link                                         Hard copy

Human Rights, Inhumanly Denied

A Battered Mother's Story The family court system, with its phalanx of abuser-identified court personnel, is the ultimate abuser in the life of already abused mothers and children. By Sonata mmo : june 2005

Link Excerpts “Those who purport to care about the safety and rights of battered mothers and children, must make the family court system their very first priority -- both in terms of preparing women effectively for the grueling abuses of the courtroom, and by lobbying for substantive changes in the court system.  As I write, children are suffering in the custody of abusers, and women across the country are living the nightmare of losing their children to their abusers. Meanwhile, in two weeks, I will be facing my own personal batterer, thousands of miles from home, and handing over my beloved child to him, unprotected, for a month. It is crucial that we transform our legal system into a justice system, and we can begin, right here, right now, by educating ourselves, and by making reform of the family court system an issue which our congressmen and women must make a priority. Right here, right now, and without exception -- because the alternative, for millions of women and children, is a nightmare beyond bearing.

If you are ready to learn more, please get a copy of the powerful "Small Justice' video, available at, or of the Wellesley Centers for Women stunning human rights reports and video documentary, which can be ordered through their website, Read Lundy Bancroft and Jay Silverman's "The Batterer as Parent", as well as Lundy Bancroft's "When Dad Hurts Mom". Read as widely and as well as you possibly can, then act.

Woman by woman, we can, and must, transform this brutal and cruel system.  mmo : june 2005       Link                                                                                                                                                                                              Hard copy

Book :The Batterer as Parent Addressing the Impact of Domestic Violence on Family Dynamics

SECOND EDITION Lundy Bancroft - Independent Jay G. Silverman - Harvard School of Public Health Daniel Ritchie © 2011 | 352 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

Link New to this Edition:

  • Increased focus on diversity with updates on race and culture infused throughout and on the child's perspective.

  • Expanded discussion of parental alienation theories.

Features and Benefits:

  • Detailed descriptions of the family dynamics engendered by domestic violence.

  • Analysis provided of the well-established overlap between battering and incest perpetration.

  • Grounded in very extensive clinical experience with authors who have been involved as counselors, supervisor of other counselors, custody evaluators, and researchers in the cases of over 2,000 men who batter.

  • Detailed and specific recommendations included for a wide range of practitioners, including domestic violence professionals, therapists, custody evaluators, family court personnel, juvenile court personnel, child protective personnel, parent educators, and visitation supervisors Link

Psychobabble or a legitimate, legal basis for child custody [2011-03-27] By Charles Keeshan Daily Herald Staff Writer Posted Sunday, November 14, 2004  Link Excerpts “The first time Norma Perez learned she was being accused of “parental alienation syndrome,” she shrugged it off. “The idea that one parent could turn a child against the other might be true, the Elgin resident figured, but it certainly did not apply to her.  “A year later, a DuPage County judge ruled otherwise.

“Declaring that the mental, emotional and physical health of her 10-year-old daughter was endangered by her mother’s behavior, Judge James J. Konetski “stripped Perez of custody and handed the girl over to her father without giving her a chance to say goodbye to mom. “I’m not a perfect person, but I know I didn’t do the things they said I did,” Perez said. “I fought for my daughter,” she said. “If we don’t, we risk losing our children, and if we do, we’re called alienators.” Robert G. Black, the attorney for Perez’s former husband, R. Edward Bates, said the label fits in this case. “The evidence showed she did not foster a close loving relationship between the child and father,” Black said. “In fact, she totally alienated the child from her father.”“Perez is just one of many mothers across the suburbs, and hundreds nationwide, to lose custody of their children based on parental alienation syndrome, a theory that stirs passionate debate in the mental health and legal communities almost two decades after its advent”. Link                                                                              Hard copy


Family courts in Ohio and around the country are increasingly being criticized for depriving children in custody disputes of their right to be heard and to be safe, by misapplying the controversial label of “parental alienation” (“PA”) or “parental alienation syndrome,”  (“PAS”) to presumptively discredit children’s reports of paternal abuse.  Although the scientific community has roundly rejected PAS as a viable theory and the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges has repeatedly cautioned against the misuse of PA to deny abuse allegations in custody litigation, abusive parents continue to use, and courts continue to apply, alienation labels to reject evidence of abuse and remove children from their mothers.  Here, the trial court abused its discretion by using the paternally-oriented theory of alienation to the profound detriment of the parties’ children: In the Domestic Relations matter,[1] the court violated the Children’s[2] Fourteenth Amendment and Ohio Constitutional right to due process by refusing to allow the Children their own counsel who would advocate for their wishes, as opposed to the Guardian Ad Litem (“GAL”), who did not represent their wishes;

  • In the Juvenile matter, where the Children did have counsel, the court violated their due process rights by denying their lawyer access to them during the legal proceedings, thereby depriving them of their right to participate in the proceedings;

  • The court shockingly treated as legally irrelevant Mr. O’Malley’s conviction for possession of obscene photographs and text stories of sexual relations between children and adults and animals[3]; and

  • The court disregarded the evidence of Mr. O’Malley’s child abuse, the Children’s terror toward their father, and at least Patrick’s psychological trauma from exposure to Mr. O’Malley.               See link                Hard copy

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Child Abuse Experts Applaud Legal Community for Rejecting Parental Alienation Syndrome Link Excerpts Joyanna Silberg, PhD, a Clinical Psychologist and Executive Vice President of the Council [see bio], has also seen first hand the long-term emotional damage this so-called syndrome has caused. "How do you explain to young children forced to live with abusers why the courts have considered them liars and ignored their cries for help?" Silberg has found that it can take years for these children to get past their feelings of betrayal by the system that was supposed to protect them. [see article about Tiffany; more children's stories]

Dr. Silberg views PAS allegations as part of a larger strategy in which abusive parents try to fool the courts, attorneys, child custody evaluators, and mental health professionals into believing that their children and ex-spouses are crazy when they raise concerns about safety. She notes the recent case of Darren Mack, accused of shooting his custody judge and stabbing his wife to death.  Mack successfully convinced a custody evaluator that he was a loving parent with no violent tendencies, notes Silberg”. Link

CHILD ABUSE SOLUTIONS, INC. FACT SHEET CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE IN CUSTODY DISPUTES Excerpts Link page 7 “21. Is it common for children in child custody disputes to be successfully alienated from one parent by the other parent?

Fact: No. The most comprehensive study to date found that although 50% of the parents in that study engaged in behaviors which might have sabotaged the child’s relationship with the other parent (“by telling negative stories and blaming the other parent, modeling hostile, demeaning behavior in the child’s presence, using the child to convey these messages, and responding with anger if the child was inclined to express positive feelings about the other parent”)

• despite these problematic behaviors by parents, only about 6% of children were extremely rejecting of the other parent (i.e., expressing “anger, dislike, scorn, denigration and complaints about the parent that were at times backed up by the child citing…allegations of maltreatment, often accompanied by refusal to visit”).

• “The study’s findings also show support for the idea that some of the children who were rejecting of a parent may have had their own good reasons for doing so.” Researchers found substantiation of child sexual abuse in 8.9% of the cases, overall child maltreatment in 36.8% of the cases, and domestic violence in 44.2% of the cases, with fathers 3 times more likely than mothers to be perpetrators. 42    Hard copy

Custody collaborations Lawyers and psychologists work together to keep children's best interests in mind . By Amy Novotney Monitor Staff July/August 2008, Vol 39, No. 7 Print version: page 48 Excerpts Link High-conflict custody cases are frequently complex and can involve disputes over alimony and child-support payments, visitation schedules and allegations of abuse, among other thorny issues. Experts say that it should be recognized that during many high-conflict divorces, both parents can engage in alienating behaviors at one time or another. There is also concern that the charge of parental alienation is sometimes used as a shield by abusers.

"Before you do anything, you start with evaluating the possibility that there is abuse of some kind," Olesen said. "It should not be called alienating behaviors in the context where they have good reason to do it." Instead, psychologists must work to identify abuse and educate victim parents on how to safeguard children against it.

She also advised evaluators to avoid the broad, overly simplistic label of parental alienation syndrome. This so-called syndrome was popularized by psychiatrist Richard A. Gardner, MD, but there is no evidence within the psychological literature of a diagnosable parental alienation syndrome. The multifaceted nature of family and custody issues can cause angry, hurt children in the throes of a high-conflict divorce to resist visitations and develop affinities for a certain parent, and this behavior, she said, does not necessarily mean the child has been alienated from the other parent.  Hard copy

How Family Courts Punish Abused Women May 17, 2010 by R. Dianne Bartlow Excerpts LinkHannah and Goldstein hope to also expose two particularly harmful court practices that have evolved over the last several decades: Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS), and “friendly parent” statutes. PAS provides a handy–and utterly without basis–refutation to incest and abuse claims by blaming mothers for any hostility that the children feel towards their fathers, maintaining that children love and respect their fathers unless a “poisonous” mother has convinced them otherwise. Even alleged incest and violence are not deemed reason enough for children to independently turn against their fathers”.

Since PAS has been deemed by the American Psychological Association to have no scientific backing, at least 32 states have incorporated the milder sounding “friendly parent” concept into their custody laws. This gives custody to the parent who will encourage the child to have more contact and a better relationship with the other parent. Often mothers are hurt by the friendly parent concept, since they can be deemed “unfriendly” for saying anything against the father, including alleging abuse. Zorza says that, ironically enough:

The unfriendly behavior of noncustodial parents (usually the father), such as not paying child support, physically or verbally abusing the mother, or stalking her, is not considered as meeting the definition of unfriendly.

With such an approach, Zorza says, family violence is discounted, and abusers are empowered while battered women are disempowered. Ultimately, children are harmed.  Hard copy

“Freedom investigative report:Heads i win, tails you lose” via freedom or the Citizens Commission on Human Rights. Excerpts Link Nevertheless, a growing trail of ruined lives has followed the use of “parental alienation syndrome” and other psychiatric labels, which at best add only heat and confusion to custody situations that are already emotionally supercharged. All too often, they add further injustice and victimize those who have already been wronged.    According to National Center for Protective Parents director Joan H. Pennington, “A pattern has emerged in thousands of cases across the country, revealing flagrant gender bias against mothers in incest cases and leaving parental child abduction, suicide and murder in its wake.”     Other cases are under scrutiny by Freedom and by the Church of Scientology’s Citizens Commission on Human Rights (CCHR), established in 1969 to investigate and expose psychiatric violations of human rights.                         “Parental alienation syndrome is another fraudulent diagnosis from the psychiatric industry, which is looking to garner as much money as possible despite the devastating consequences to children,” said Peter Dockx of CCHR. “The results from the increasing use of this diagnosis in family courts in California and elsewhere is causing untold harm to children and robbing mothers of their sons and daughters.”       CCHR has documented that whenever psychiatry enters the scene, whether it be in schools, courts or some other sphere, suffering and violations of human rights ensue. Since psychiatry insinuated itself into the criminal courts, Dockx noted, the quality of justice has declined and society has become more dangerous. Today, family courts are being perverted and undermined.

  “The way to curb the further erosion of the justice system and to prevent destruction of children’s lives,” Dockx said, “is to demand an end to the fraudulent use of psychiatric labels and to get rid of psychiatry in the court's.”   Hard copy

ALBERTA COUNCIL of WOMEN’S SHELTERS  DOMESTIC VIOLENCE: CHILD CUSTODY, ACCESS AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR REFORM Submission to the Ministry of Children’s Services January 2003 Excerpts Link page 18 section “INTEGRATION OF CHILD WELFARE LEGISLATION “Women are encouraged to disclose allegations of child abuse in custody and access proceedings. If women do, they may be accused of “parental alienation syndrome” and run the risk of losing custody to the abusive partner. If women don’t say anything and the abuse continues, child welfare may apprehend the children and accuse the women of failing to protect the children. “ Hard copy


A Critical Assessment of Child Custody Evaluations Limited Science and a Flawed System Robert E. Emery,1 Randy K. Otto,2 William T. O’Donohue3 1 University of Virginia, 2 University of South Florida, and 3 University of Nevada–Reno Excerpts page 10 right side Link “PAS: Asserting Science Where There Is None”

‘‘Parental alienation’’ is a construct ranked high on the list of factors evaluators consider to be directly relevant to custody decision making. There is no test instrument designed to measure parent alienation. Rather, it is a ‘‘diagnosis’’ reached through clinical interviews. Some experts have testified to making the diagnosis of parental alienation syndrome, and their testimony is claimed to be an important influence on judicial decision making (Gardner, 2004).

‘‘Parental Alienation Syndrome’’ is a term created by psychiatrist Richard Gardner (2001) based on his clinical experience with custody disputes. Gardner asserts that PAS, which he says develops almost exclusively in the context of custody disputes, is characterized by one parent ‘‘programming’’ a child against the other parent (Gardner, 2001). The assumption is that a child’s disdain for one parent is generally unjustified and solely attributable to denigration on the part of the other, alienating parent. Gardner (2004) also claims that PAS can be ‘‘diagnosed’’ reliably and validly by expert evaluators, although he offers no explicit criteria for doing so or objective evidence to support his claim (Emery, 2005).” Hard copy

2014 Toward a Child-Centered Approach to Evaluating Claims of Alienation in High-Conflict Custody Disputes Allison M. Nichols University of Michigan Law School  Link Excerpts Section Conclusion page 27

“Conclusion Evidence regarding a diagnosable “Parental Alienation Syndrome” or a “Parental Alienation Disorder” distracts a court from the urgent task of identifying and protecting a child’s best interests. Expert testimony on this subject fails both the Frye and Daubert standards for admissibility, and the parental rights framework that it promotes is at odds with the court’s assessment of the best interests of the child. By excluding expert testimony on PAS and appointing an independent representative of the child’s interests, courts will enhance their ability to make custody determinations that properly address the child’s safety, stability, and happiness”.

Hard copyMichigan

Domestic Violence, Abuse and Child Custody Presented by Mo Therese Hannah, PHD       

December 2, 2010 Law Review Volume 11 Excerpts  slide 13 LinkParental Alienation Syndrome (PAS)

  • What it is

  • Pseudo-scientific:  Lacks any scientific basis

  • Dr. Paul Fink chapter and pro-pedophile basis of PAS

  • Used as tactic by abusers to maintain power and control

  • Widespread harm to children

  • Still used frequently although not always by that name

ARTICLE: Parental Alienation Analysis, Domestic Violence, and Gender Bias in Minnesota Courts Winter, 2011  Law and Inequality  29 Law & Ineq. 5   Author   Rita Berg+    Copyright (c) 2011 Law and Inequality: A Journal of Theory and Practice Law and Inequality Link  Excerpt

Richard Gardner, a child psychiatrist, coined the term "parental alienation syndrome" (PAS) in the 1980s. 1PAS directs that where one parent coaches the child to alienate the other parent, custody, in severe cases, should be transferred to the alienated parent. 2 The court's use of PAS is not innocuous. In child custody cases, a child's upbringing and, in some instances, physical safety rest on the court's decision. 3

Despite wide criticism of PAS among Gardner's peers in the psychology field, 4 this theory has permeated the legal system, appearing primarily in custody judgments. 5 However, legal and psychology experts have identified numerous hazards of using this theory. 6 These dangers have come to fruition in Minnesota's legal system: PAS has been used effectively by fathers to gain favorable custody judgments, while mothers have consistently been cast as alienating parents and deprived of custody of their children. 7

Further complicating the issue is the domestic abuse context. Even Gardner noted that this theory should not be applied in domestic violence situations. 8 Abuse would be a sufficient reason for the child to reject the abusive parent. 9 Courts have not always abided by this caveat. 10 However, strictly adhering to Gardner's domestic violence exception also poses problems because it is too narrow. 11 His exemption does not cover mothers in domestic violence situations who have difficulty proving the abuse in court, yet wish to protect their children from the abusive parent. 12 This Article traces …      Link

NASHVILLE, Tenn -Coalition Calls Attention to the Fake Courtroom Diagnosis of Parental Alienation Syndrome by Refuting Alec Baldwin’s Book October 02, 2008 09:40 AM Eastern Daylight Time Contacts Tennessee Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence Kathy Walsh, Executive Director, 615-386-9406 Link Excerpts ““The fact that women in Tennessee are being advised to not bring up domestic violence or child abuse strongly suggests that Parental Alienation Syndrome is being used to silence women and children into submission and continued abuse”

Excerpts first paragraph “NASHVILLE, Tenn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Tennessee Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence (Coalition) has seen a growing trend in victims of domestic and sexual violence losing custody of their children to batterers due to a misperception called Parental Alienation Syndrome. This has gain heightened interest in the media due to the release of Alec Baldwin’s book entitled, A Promise to Ourselves.”   Link

Hard copy

Truth Commission Findings and Solutions Fourth Battered Mothers Custody Conference (BMCC IV) January 13, 2007 Albany, New York Testimony to the Truth Commission Truth Commission Members: Richard Ducote, Esq, Chair; Nancy Erickson, Esq.;Barry Goldstein, Esq.; Eileen King; Patti Jo Newell; Connie Valentine, M.S.; Gwen Wright; and Joan Zorza, Esq. Special Thanks to Mo Hannah, Ph.D., Truth Commission Coordinator Link  Sixteen women testified before the Truth Commission at the Fourth Battered Mothers Custody Conference about their family law cases, which covered eleven states. The common theme that emerged from the testimony is that there is a widespread problem of abusive parents being granted custody of children and protective parents having their custody limited or denied, and/or being otherwise punished. There is a crisis in the custody court system, which has resulted in thousands of children being sent to live with abusers while safe, protective parents, primarily mothers, are denied any meaningful relationship with their children. The court system has failed to respond appropriately to domestic violence and child abuse cases involving custody. The Commission found many common errors made by the courts and the professionals they rely upon which contribute to these tragedies. These same mistakes have negatively impacted battered women and children in other cases, with less extreme results. From these and other case histories, and issues raised by concerned professionals throughout the country, the Commission made the following findings and proposals recommended for further study. Not all members of the Truth Commission agree with every proposed solution, but all members are in agreement that solutions need to be developed to address these findings.  Hard copy

2CIVIL LIBERTIES Custody Disputes Often Ignore Evidence of Child Abuse Research indicates that abusers seek sole custody more often than nonviolent parents, and they succeed about 70 percent of the time. By Marie Tessier / Women's eNews  July 10, 2007  Link Among the perils facing protective mothers seeking custody is the widely discredited -- yet widely used -- theory called the "parental alienation syndrome."

It is heralded by some fathers' rights groups and used by alleged abusers, as well as some custody evaluators and judges, to cast battered women and protective parents as having "brainwashed" or "alienated" a child from the parent accused of abuse. The concept received a new public airing in April when actor Alec Baldwin accused his ex-wife, Kim Basinger, of alienating him from his 11-year-old daughter. The remark came to light after a taped phone call in which he berated the girl as a "thoughtless little pig" was posted on the Internet. Baldwin and Basinger have been involved in a contentious custody dispute since 2002.

However, research published in several psychology journals indicates that divorce or custody disputes do not give rise to an increased number of false allegations and untrue claims most often come from fathers, not mothers. The proposed syndrome is not a recognized diagnosis by the American Psychological Association, which says the theory lacks clinical data to support it and cautions against using the term.                                                    Hard copy

Advocating for Battered Mothers: The Least You Need to Know Stephanie Avalon February 2013 The Battered Women’s Justice Project 1801 Nicollet Ave S. Suite 102 Minneapolis, MN 55403 Link Excerpts page 6

“While these factors are common in cases where batterers are seeking custody, it’s easy to assume they have no bearing on whether a mother may lose custody.  In the case of allegations of abuse where the children do not want contact with the father, batterers often charge the mother with alienating behavior using Richard Gardner’s Parental Alienation Syndrome 8.” Hard copy

Read an Excerpt From Phyllis Chesler's Book -- 'Mothers On Trial'

By Phyllis Chesler   Published August 05, 2011 Link Excerpts “The 2011 Update” 3rd paragraph

“I understand that this sounds unbelievable. But it is still true. The mothers of raped children, who are also described as “protective” mothers, are seen as guilty of “parental alienation syndrome.” The fact that this concept, first pioneered by Dr. Richard Gardner and widely endorsed by fathers’ rights groups, has been dismissed as junk science does not seem to matter. Most guardians ad litem, parenting counselors, mediators, lawyers, mental health professionals, and judges still act as if this syndrome were real and mainly find mothers, not fathers, guilty in this regard. In 2010 the American Psychiatric Association was still fighting to include a new disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders: the parental alienation disorder, to replace the debunked parental alienation syndrome”.

“In 2009 and 2010 more than fifty mothers from twenty-one U.S. states and a number of foreign countries all shared their stories with me. Their cases took place between the late 1980s and 2010. Some cases are still ongoing”.    Hard copy

Karen A – DV/Sex Abuse Counselor – 14 Years in Family Court Amador County, CA Link  Excerpts “Karen is holding her son Jeff’s blanket that he used to cling to for security as a child before leaving to go on unwanted and upsetting court-ordered visits with his father. Karen lost custody of her three children three years after her divorce when a custody evaluator claimed that Karen suffered from ‘Parental Alienation Syndrome,’

or PAS, when she tried to bring up evidence of sexual abuse perpetrated by her ex-husband towards her daughters — evidence in one child of internal scarring from old healed genital wounds and a recent injury. When asked under oath in a deposition if he molested his daughters, Karen’s ex-husband refused to answer and invoked a Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination”.

See link  for rest of article                                                          Hard copy

Rethinking Custody Evaluation in Cases Involving Domestic Violence 2009 Evan Stark, Ph.D, MSW Professor, School of Public Affairs and Administration, Rutgers University-Newark, MLK Blvd, Hill Hall, 7th Floor, Newark, NJ 07102 Excerpts “Introduction No current issue divides the professionals who work in and around family courts more sharply than the appropriate response in divorce cases that involve domestic violence. Litigants are also deeply divided about the court response. List-serves of “protective mothers” and their supporters are filled with horrific stories of women who have lost custody to abusive husbands or been punished, even jailed, for disobeying court orders to provide these men with unsupervised access to their children. Almost as common are accounts from Fathers’ Rights groups claiming that men are as often the victims as the perpetrators of abuse and that scores of husbands have been denied access to their children after being unjustly accused of domestic violence by their wives. Nor are these plaints confined to cyber-space. When PBS aired “Breaking the Silence” in 2006, a documentary focused on the plight of protective mothers in family court and featuring experts who criticized Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS)as “junk” science, a letterwriting campaign spearheaded by Fathers’ Rights publicist Glen Sacks forced the Public Broadcasting Corporation to quickly produce a more “balanced” show.   Hard copy

REPORTER'S NOTEBOOK: JENNIFER COLLINS SPEAKS ABOUT HER FAMILY'S CASE BY BETH WALTON TUESDAY, JULY 29, 2008 | 8 YEARS AGO Link Excerpts “More often than not, a battered woman is not going to want let the children go to the home of the man who abused her, and she ends up looking hysterical and frantic as she pleads for their safety, at times defying ordered visitation upon the advice medical practitioners. Lawyers for the abuser will then capitalize on that behavior and make the battered parent look unstable—using labels such asMunchausen Syndrome by Proxy (MSbP) or Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS), a disease not substantiated by the American Psychological Association with little scholastic or empirical evidence. Here's a great Newsweek story on the subject”.

“Slowly some states are starting to introduce legislation to improve the system, says Silberg, who is working on federal reform to better protect children from abuse. In Tennessee, for example, a bill was passed making it illegal to use PAS as a custody reversal basis if abuse is alleged. In other places lawmakers are trying to do the same thing with MSbP”.

“The system changes slower than the cases cycle through. A little while ago Silberg worked with a client whose father was implicated for physical abuse and had punched his child in the face. He got full custody. Years later the mother was finally allowed weekend visitation”.

"But that's not uncommon. That's a very common story," Silberg says. "If you spent a day in my shoes you would not believe you are in America. It's like the Middle Ages, a Third World County. It's truly a veil over reality. It's so sad."  see link                             Hard copy

December 9, 2012

Documentary targets family courts and custody evaluators Link  Excerpts “No Way Out highlights the internationally known case of Holly Collins, who fled with her son Zachary and daughter Jennifer in 1994 after her husband was granted sole custody by a court in Minnesota. According to the film, the judge ignored evidence of domestic violence and child abuse, including a skull fracture to the boy. After a circuitous flight through Canada and Guatemala, Collins eventually won asylum in the Netherlands. By the time the FBI caught up with the family, the children were adults. In the film, they convincingly describe chronic abuse at the hands of their father. Holly's dynamic daughter, Jennifer, the inspiration for the film, is executive director of Courageous Kids, which empowers children to go public about family court abuse (her blog is HERE)”.

“The Collins's long-running custody battle featured allegations of Parental Alienation Syndrome, a controversial syndrome in which one parent (most often the mother) is accused of alienating the children from the other parent. Collins was also labeled with another highly contentious diagnosis, Munchausen by Proxy, after she sought medical treatment for her children, whom she says were being injured by their father’s abuse and neglect”.   Link                                                    Hard copy

No Way Out But One: Custody, Abuse and the Family Courts  10/26/2012 07:10 pm ET | Updated Dec 26, 2012   Nancy Doyle PalmerJournalist and screenwriter Link Excerpts “One of the things Holly was accused of in court is being "an alienating parent." What is that?”

There is a bit of junk science called the Parental Alienation Syndrome. Even though it has been rejected by the American Psychiatric Association and the American Psychiatric Association and the American Medical Association, it is used all the time. It was used in Holly's case and it is used every day in America's family courts to separate loving parents from the children they are trying to protect. PAS says that if a child makes allegations of physical or sexual abuse in the course of a high-conflict custody dispute, it is probably not true and it's just the child trying to ally himself with one of the parents -- usually the mom. And if the protective parent believes their child and says something bad about the other parent, then that parent is bad and is guilty of Parental Alienation Syndrome. And the only way to fix the problem is to take the child away from the protective parent and give custody to the accused abuser”.             See link for rest of article                              Hard copy

Reform Needed in the Court System Regarding Child Custody By Alastair Bland • November 19, 2009 Link Excerpts “Meanwhile, “parental alienation syndrome,” or PAS, has become extremely popular and very effective as a weapon in custody battles. Court-appointed evaluators and psychologists regularly diagnose parents with this “condition,” which is supposedly characterized by one parent seeking to “alienate” the child from the other parent. Although PAS is not a scientifically proven theory, the syndrome is admitted frequently as evidence in custody battles, and parents marred with the PAS label often lose custody to the alleged abuser, explains Russell”. Link                       Hard copy

The Broken Custody Court System: Is there Reason for Hope?  By Barry Goldstein

Link Excerpts “Section “The Rejection of PAS”

Parental Alienation Syndrome is a bogus theory concocted by Richard Gardner to help him and other professionals who are part of the cottage industry supporting abusive fathers to obtain large incomes at the expense of the well-being of children. There continues to be ever more research that debunks the theory and demonstrates the enormous harm it has caused.

PAS was never approved by any recognized professional organization. It was never included in the DSM which is the book that includes all the valid and recognized mental health conditions. Despite intense lobbying by abuser groups and the cottage industry, it was again rejected by the American Psychiatric Association which refused to include PAS in the DSM-V because there is no valid research supporting it. I realize that not many court professionals follow current research and decisions like this, but attorneys for protective mothers can bring this to the courts’ attention which can only serve to further undermine its reputation.  Link                                                     Hard copy

FAMILY COURTS IN CRISIS NEWSLETTER May 2013 BMCC - Battered Women, Abused Children & Child Custody: A National Crisis  Link  Excerpts page 5 “NATIONAL SAFE CHILD COALTION - CAPITOL HILL LOBBYING Mothers and advocates from all over the USA met to lobby Senators and Congressional members on Capitol Hill soliciting a Congressional Oversight Hearing on the failure of family courts in the 50 States to protect victims of domestic abuse during divorce and custodial hearings. The failure of the US governments and United State judicial systems to protect victims of domestic abuse and violence under the principle of due diligence is documented in the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, Gonzales vs. USA, 2011. Senators from all 50 States were presented with the information about the crisis in family courts all over the United States, and activist met with staff members from the offices of Congressmen Ted Poe, Jim Costa, John Conyers, and Tony Cardenas. The National Safe Child Coalition works with national, state and local governmental agencies as well as private organizations. NSCC’s goal is to bring together enough organizations, individuals and leaders to address the epidemic of child abuse in the USA. Our focus is prevention through educating, training and bringing an awareness to the public. – | Contact: (Tammi Stefano, Executive Director of Public Relations) Link

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Is World War Needed to Protect Our Children? by Phyllis Chesler Link Excerpts This past weekend I delivered a keynote speech at the tenth annual Battered Mothers Custody Conference. This conference was founded by Dr. Maureen (“Mo”) Hannah and has functioned as a life line forbattered and “protective” mothers. The program included keynote speeches by Terry O’Neill, NOW’s national President and Toby Kleinman, prominent family law attorney and champion for women’s rights. More than 15 sessions took place, led by the most dedicated and fearless lawyers, mental health professionals, and mothers. More than 150 people attended this conference. Forty people delivered lectures; 10 of them were custodially challenged mothers”.

“Some mothers lost custody of their children to their batterers.  Many battered mothers lost their children when they alleged that their violent husbands had also been sexually abusing their child. Often such mothers are seen as “crazy,” and as “alienating” the child from their perfectly nice father. I first broke this scandal 27 years ago when I published my book Mothers on Trial. The Battle for Children and Custody. There have been some improvements. Documented domestic violence is often factored in a bit more often; where there are assets, judges may award mothers a greater percentage of them; gay parents and mothers with demanding careers do not lose custody as they once did for these reasons”. link                                                               hard copy


10 Ways Anti-sexist Men Can Help Reform the Broken Custody Court System By Barry Goldstein, NOMAS Child Custody Task Group Link Excerpts “8.  Seek legislative reforms:  Although the courts could do a good job protecting children with the present laws, there are changes to the law that would provide additional safety to protective mothers and their children.  Laws supporting “friendly parent” provisions or shared parenting should be repealed because they are routinely used to support abusers and even when there is an exception for domestic violence, the exception is regularly ignored or minimized.  These laws have been applied in a gender biased manner and there is no research to support a belief the laws benefit children.  Research regarding the harm of domestic violence to children has resulted in laws requiring courts to consider domestic violence or create a presumption favoring custody for the non-abusive parent.  The problem is that most of the laws apply only to the more severe forms of abuse and require a high level of proof.  Legislatures should pass laws supporting the best practices found in up-to-date research which is the victim or less aggressive parent should have custody and the abuser should at least initially be limited to supervised visitation.  Professionals without substantial domestic violence training and experience should not be permitted to work on domestic violence custody cases or should at least be required to consult with a genuine expert.  Courts should be required to keep records for each judge of how often they make findings supporting allegations of domestic violence and how frequently they create Custody-Visitation Scandal Cases.  Courts should be specifically barred from permitting evidence of unscientific theories such as Parental Alienation Syndrome.  Judges should be required to put their reasons in writing when they rule against domestic violence allegations. Laws should be passed encouraging courts to award legal fees and other support to the parent having fewer assets when this is required to level the playing field.  Evidence of gender bias should be grounds for appeal and when a judge engages in gender bias an appeals court should not be permitted to defer to his judgment based on his familiarity with the parties and their demeanor in court.  States should establish effective disciplinary protocols for judges and create whistle blower protections for attorneys or others who expose improper behavior of professionals in the court system.     Link                                                                                            Hard copy

Mothers Push Reforms in Family Courts’ Handling of Custody Cases by  Jennifer Friedlin December 17, 2004

Read more:

Link Excerpts Another problem, Geffner said, is that family court judges do not receive enough training to understand the intricacies of domestic violence and sexual abuse. Meanwhile, over the last decade, the father’s rights movement has grown stronger, successfully touting an unproven theory known as Parental Alienation Syndrome that has gained acceptance in many courtrooms. According to this theory, women who claim that their former spouses or partners are abusive are simply using the allegations to try and alienate their children from their fathers.

“PAS is a variant on a theme to undermine the credibility of the mother by showing that she is conniving or obsessed or mean-spirited,” said Randy Burton, founder of Justice for Children, a Houston-based nonprofit advocacy organization”.

Read more:

2000 Evidence Issues in Domestic Violence Civil Cases Jane H. Aiken Georgetown University Law Center, Jane C. Murphy University of Baltimore School of Law,

Link Excerpts page 51 “Presently, approximately 70 percent of contested custody cases that involve a history of domestic violence result in an award of sole or joint custody to the abuser.38 Such awards may result from the recent trend in which more and more states adopt "friendly parent" provisions as a factor in assessing which parent should receive custody of the children. A mother may find herself in a "Catch 22." If she fails to report the abuse, the court labels her an ineffective or neglectful mother failing to protect her child. If she reports the abuse, the court may label her an "unfriendly parent" with parental alienation syndrome, and she may lose custody of her child. This trend necessitates a critical distinction between an "unfriendly parent" and a mother attempting to protect herself and her child from the abuser, particularly when a victim minimizes her abuse or engages in maladaptive self-help behaviors?9 Again, in such a situation, expert opinion critically educates the factfinder”.4o link                                                    hard copy

Florida petition: STOP COURT ORDERED CHILD ABUSE N A Hollywood, FL Excerpts  link The Florida Family Courts are abusing children in alarming numbers. Children that have been abused and or neglected by a parent, are being forced to continue to have unmonitored visitation, or worse, live with the abusive parent. Family Courts are battering protective parents to such an alarming rate, with allowing the trendy catchphrase “Parental Alienation” or other sugar coated wording that means the same, as a defense for the abusive parent and their attorney’s. Parental Alienation is not a real syndrome, and has never been recognized as one, however the courts are allowing abusive parent s to use this as a defense in a custody case, where a child has been abused or made allegations of abuse. The protective parent has sought help within the court, to protect their children from further abuses, yet are met with a horrifying outcome. Protective parents are turned into the abusers of parental alienation, with no chance to prove they are innocent, while the abuse or neglect allegations are forgotten”.

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Video :Domestic Violence Continued: Contested Child Custody  from CLAS Multimedia Dr. Sharon K. Araji, Professor of Sociology Domestic Violence Continued: Contested Child Custody


Excerpts see link  “Hello, my name is Jennifer Collins. I am the adult child in a highly publicized "Parental Alienation," child abuse, custody case. Many "professionals" from the therapeutic and legal fields resort to the term “parental alienation” to try to explain why children say that they do not want to spend time with a particular parent post divorce. They have no idea how that label can be destructive and even deadly to children who are being abused and then turned against their protective parent who is desperately trying to protect them and secure their safety”.

“In actuality “Parental Alienation” excuses a perpetrator of child abuse, strips a domestic violence survivor of any support she might have while demonizing her, leaving the children victimized again and wondering why no one will help them. Parental Alienation was lodged against my mother to supposedly explain my brother’s and my fear of our father and pining for our mom. Not only is "parental alienation" heavily relied on to explain away reports of child abuse, it is an easy, simple and convenient rationale when these professionals get confused between the "he said/she said" factors in child custody cases. In my case, it resulted with the court ignoring my brother’s and my accounts of horrible abuse, severing the most important bond we had in our young lives (with our mommy) and forcing us to live with the person we identified as abusing us (our own father.) I have been on both sides of the "Parental Alienation" argument and what happened to me and my brother fell well beyond what this fictitious phenomenon contends”.  Excerpts see link                                                        Hard copy

T The Truth Behind Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) DEBORAHMOM ♦         

             MARCH 28, 2014Link Excerpts Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) is a theory developed by Richard Gardner, MD, who claimed that PAS is “a disorder of children, arising almost exclusively in child-custody disputes, in which one parent (usually the mother) programs the child to hate the other parent (usually the father).” The theory was developed in 1985 and was based on Gardner’s own clinical experience, and not on scientific research of any kind. Even still, Gardner’s theory has had a profound and damaging effect on the family court systems since he introduced it. Gardner has managed to convince the media and many court systems of the existence of PAS and ever since, protective mothers have been losing custody of their children, to abusive fathers, at an alarming rate. This is especially true in cases where sexual abuse has occurred and has been brought to light by the protective mother, during the custody part of the divorce process. Because of the popularization of this unfounded theory, children are now being given into the hands of their abusers for unsupervised visitation, joint and even sole custody, with orders for the protective mothers to have, at best, supervised and limited visitation rights. Why? Because the courts now believe that in order to “cure” PAS, the children must be placed with the parent who is accused of the abuse, and have little to no contact from the other parent, because it is assumed that the accusation of abuse is almost always false and a tactic, used mainly by women, to gain custody.  Link

One More Battleground: Domestic Violence, Child Custody, and the Batterers’ Relentless Pursuit of their Victims Through the Courts  VOLUME 9 • ISSUE 2 • 2011  Mary Przekop Link Excerpts page 16 “Some batterers also make false allegations that undermine a woman’s credibility.86 These may include baseless accusations of the woman “abusing, neglecting, or kidnapping the children, or denying [the batterer’s] visitation rights.”87 In addition, the use of discredited psychological “syndromes” such as Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) is not uncommon. According to the doctor that established PAS, Dr. Richard A.  Excerpts page 17 “Gardner, PAS is supposedly applicable almost solely to women88 and is a condition in which a psychologically overwhelmed parent, either knowingly or unknowingly, creates misrepresentations of the other parent in the child’s head in the hopes that the child will alienate that other parent.89 Despite being “untested, unproven, and unreliable,” PAS can and has been used in custody cases to malign the reputation of mothers, portraying them as malicious, hostile, and mentally unstable.90 Allowing evidence of PAS in custody disputes, unfortunately, might mislead the court when real abuse is present.91

Although Gardner repeatedly insists that PAS is never present when there is ‘real’ abuse, he offers no useful guidance in differentiating these cases. Clearly, children who have witnessed one parent battering the other, or experienced abuse themselves, will have negative feelings about the abuser. PAS provides a convenient explanation for behaviors that legitimately might occur in abuse cases . . . [and] appeal[s] to an understandable desire to minimize the realities of domestic violence and sexual abuse of children. No one wants to think of a child in pain, especially if that pain is caused by a parent. However, the courts must recognize that by taking [this syndrome] seriously, they send a clear message to abused women and children: Do not come to us because we will not believe you.92 Such defensive tactics not only misdirect the court in particular instances but also risk placing the children in these cases with an abusive parent. Regardless of which spurious claim is made by the batterer, the court should remain skeptical of them whenever claims of domestic violence are involved”. Link  hard copy

Video :Domestic Violence Continued: Contested Child Custody  from CLAS Multimedia Dr. Sharon K. Araji, Professor of Sociology

Domestic Violence Continued: Contested Child Custody

Alec Baldwin and PAS (Parental Alienation Syndrome): Shifting the Paradigm On Abuse Sponsor Mandel School for Applied Social Sciences and The Law-Medicine Center, Case Western Reserve University School of Law -sponsored by The Law-Medicine Center Link Excerpts “On April 11, 2007, actor Alec Baldwin was taped using highly derogatory language toward his then 11- year- old daughter. After much nationwide publicity about the incident, mostly negative, he published a co-authored book, “ A Promise to Ourselves: A Journey through Fatherhood and Divorce,” in which he alleges he was driven to speak to his daughter this way by his ex-wife, Kim Basinger, because she had “alienated” his daughter from him. He devotes 20 pages to the now discredited “Parental Alienation Syndrome” (PAS).  

In this presentation, Judge Gothard will first give a brief history of the Baldwin/Basinger case, leading up to the now infamous remarks. Judge Gothard will show how child abuse perpetrators often use the media, politicians, and particularly the courts to shift the paradigm so that they are now perceived as the victims, and the focus becomes the “alienating” parent, all too often causing the original complaint(s) of child abuse or neglect, to be ignored.  

This is often done by “High Conflict People,” especially in contested cases of custody and/or visitation. Contributing to this misuse of the court system is the discredited “Parental Alienation Syndrome,” problems with the Guardian Ad Litem system; “punishment” for reporting abuse; problems with Judges, unwarranted psychological and/or social work evaluations, court appointed “experts” and other issues.  Link                Hard copy

The Cover Up UnCovered Link   Saving Damon Excerpts  “THERE IS A MASSIVE COVER UP OF SEXUAL ABUSE IN FAMILY COURTS THAT MAKES THE CATHOLIC CHURCH AND FLDS SCANDALS PALE IN COMPARISON. MILLIONS OF CHILDREN HAVE BEEN VICTIMIZED DUE TO BIAS AND CORRUPTION. "It is not a matter of ignorance or incredulity.   They know, and they systematically cover it up.  And those who are covering it up know exactly who they are." Dr. Amy Neustein From Madness to Mutiny:  Why Mothers Are Running from Family Courts

I. The first step in Ending the COVER UP is to expose the problem and educate the public.

II. The second step is to hold all those accountable who participate in the COVER UP.

III. The third step is to create a system that does not COVER UP child abuse, but protects children.  see link for rest     Hard copy

Safe Child Act  by Barry Goldstein Link Excerpts section Mandating Practices Supported by Current Scientific Research “

Parental Alienation Syndrome is not mentioned by name, but the law would bar theories like PAS that have no scientific basis. Furthermore professionals who seek to use such bogus theories would be barred from participating in domestic violence cases. The recent rejection of the campaign to include PAS in the DSM IV because it has no scientific basis should make it easy for PAS to be rejected including when it is used by other names such as parental alienation or just alienation.”  link

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A Mother's Nightmare - Incest A Practical Legal Guide for Parents and Professionals John E. B. Myers    1999  264 pages Link Excerpts about “When parents - usually mothers - try to protect their children from sexual abuse, they can be devastated to find that support from the legal system is not always there. Suspecting their husbands or partners of the abuse, mothers may seek a divorce and custody or, if already divorced, request withdrawal of visitation rights. However, if unable to prove abuse, a mother can be labelled `hysterical' and her desperate efforts to secure her child's safety may jeopardize her case - and even result in the suspected perpetrator being granted custody of the child.

Addressesing this troubling issue, this book provides parents and professionals with the necessary information to protect themselves against a legal system backfire. John E B Myers advises parents not to act too quickly, stresses the importance of documenting evidence and supplies a step-by-step strategy for attaining victory in the current United States court system. Topics discussed include: psychosocial evaluations; legal options; consequences of false allegations; and maintaining emotional balance. Link

PARENTAL ALIENATION SYNDROME: FRYE V GARDNER IN THE FAMILY COURTS (PART 1 OF 2) by Jerome H. Poliacoff, Ph.D., P.A., Cynthia L. Greene, Esq., and Laura Smith, Esq Link Excerpts section Marriage and Divorce “ 7th paragraph “Notable among the allegations made by counsel in representing their client’s claim for "sole ownership" of the "prize" is that of "parental alienation syndrome". The popularity of such a claim has been enhanced by the prolific writing and public appearances of Richard Gardner, M.D. as originator of this "syndrome" (FN2).

In this article we will challenge both the scientific and legal legitimacy of this syndrome. After first defining "parental alienation syndrome" (PAS) we will review the criteria by which expert testimony may be accepted into evidence and explore the shortcomings of PAS under Frye and Daubert. We will then delineate the mental health expert’s ethical obligation when serving as an expert before the court as it relates to PAS. We will review the relevant case law as it pertains to the admissibility of PAS before the courts. Finally we will offer alternative areas for inquiry into the source of impaired parent child relationships occurring in the context of child custody litigation”. Link                               hard copy

PARENTAL ALIENATION SYNDROME: FRYE V GARDNER IN THE FAMILY COURTS (PART 2 OF 2) by Jerome H. Poliacoff, Ph.D., P.A., Cynthia L. Greene, Esq., and Laura Smith, Esq Link Excerpts Section The Expert’s Obligation” As has been noted in the section above, PAS does not meet the court's’ threshold requirement to qualify as scientific. Clearly then, the offering of PAS to the courts as an explanatory construct, let alone a basis for making recommendation about the future of children’s lives, does not meet the minimal set of ethical standards incumbent on experts appearing before the court”. Link             

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Via stop it now “Custody Cases Involving Child Sexual Abuse” Link Excerpts see section “So-called “parental alienation syndrome “

“Parental alienation” refers to a process by which one parent consciously or unconsciously seeks to alienate a child’s affection from the other parent. Although there is no credible scientific evidence that supports the existence of a parental alienation syndrome, it continues to be used in custody cases to attack the credibility of parents (usually mothers), and to “disprove” testimony of children who have disclosed their father’s acts of abuse. For example, a parent may get a child to feel negatively toward the other parent by speaking negatively about that parent. Unfortunately, some psychologists have popularized parental alienation as a “syndrome” that, they say, often appears in the context of court custody cases. In many cases in which parental alienation syndrome is claimed, a father states that the mother’s charge that he is sexually abusing their child is not only false, but that it is merely a strategy to gain custody of the child. Sadly, in the name of parental alienation syndrome, courts may not consider real reasons that justify charges of sexual abuse, and will conclude that the mother is making up evidence. Link                                                         Hard copy

Custody Evaluations When There Are Allegations of Domestic Violence: Practices, Beliefs, and Recommendations of Professional Evaluators Author: Michael S. Davis, Ph.D.; Chris S. O’Sullivan, Ph.D.; Kim Susser, JD; Hon. Marjory D. Fields, JD  Date R November 29, 2010 link excerpts section Executive Summary Project Overview 4th paragraph page 9 “Some evaluators apply the construct of Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS), despite the rejection of PAS by professional organizations such as the American Psychological Association and the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges and by domestic violence experts (American Psychological Association, 1996; Dalton, Drozd & Wong, 2006; Bancroft & Silverman, 2002). Furthermore, PAS is inadmissible as a psychological diagnosis in most family courts across the US (Hoult, 2006). Nonetheless, its influence survives in the form of a similar construct, referred to as “parental alienation,” which is frequently applied by custody evaluators and judges (Bruch, 2002). “ Link                                                    Hard copy

Pedophiles use 'junk' theory to win custody

By Peter Ellingsen October 3, 2004 Link Excerpts “Pedophiles around Australia may be escaping punishment and retaining custody of their young children by evoking a questionable psychological condition.

The condition, Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS), undermines a child's complaint of sexual abuse by claiming it is the result of one parent's influence.

It is cited in Family Court custody battles, and can play a part in a parent accused of sexual abuse, usually a father, getting custody”. Link

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HEADLINE: Use of legal tool in custody battles debated BYLINE: By Meghan Gordon, St. Tammany bureau May 2, 2004  Link  Excerpts “The last time Clarence Brown saw his three teenagers, they stormed away from his table at a Covington cafe before a waiter could deliver their omelets. In the parking lot outside, he stood behind his daughter's car thinking he would rather get run over than let his children leave without explaining why they didn't want him in their lives anymore. But his 19-year-old daughter edged out of the parking space and fishtailed across the gravel lot. The divorced father didn't see or hear from them for two months. With guidance from a Lafayette man who founded an advocacy group this year for non-custodial parents, Brown is now convinced he is a victim of "parental alienation syndrome." The controversial theory holds that divorced parents poison their children with bitter remarks and false accusations of abuse about their ex-spouses, who are then squeezed out of their children's lives”. Link                    Hard copy

Custody Disputes Often Bypass Abuse Assessments By: Marie Tessier Link Excerpts “Among the perils facing protective mothers seeking custody is the widely discredited--yet widely used--theory called the "parental alienation syndrome."

“It is heralded by some fathers' rights groups and used by alleged abusers, as well as some custody evaluators and judges, to cast battered women and protective parents as having "brainwashed" or "alienated" a child from the parent accused of abuse. The concept received a new public airing in April when actor Alec Baldwin accused his ex-wife, Kim Basinger, of alienating him from his 11-year-old daughter. The remark came to light after a taped phone call in which he berated the girl as a "thoughtless little pig" was posted on the Internet. Baldwin and Basinger have been involved in a contentious custody dispute since 2002”.

“However, research published in several psychology journals indicates that divorce or custody disputes do not give rise to an increased number of false allegations and untrue claims most often come from fathers, not mothers. The proposed syndrome is not a recognized diagnosis by the American Psychological Association, which says the theory lacks clinical data to support it and cautions against using the term”. Link                                                                                  HArd copy

Audio : Domestic Violence: My Freedom from Abuse

Written by: Beth Praed Narrated by: Beth PraeLength: 2 hrs and 44 mins Excerpts Also included is discussion of a current hot topic in the courts - "Parental Alienation Syndrome" - and how your abuser might try to use it against you.”

Parental Alienation Syndrome: family law's paradigm for child abuse By Elspeth McInnes  Posted Monday, 19 May 2003 Link Excerpts The controversy over Peter Hollingworth's response to allegations of Child abuse within his diocese provides an opportunity for reflection on the way we respond, as a nation, to allegations of child abuse. In recent times, evidence of systemic abuse and inappropriate handling of them has come to light in a number of institutions in Australia and overseas. In most cases, this has led to the development or refinement of policies and procedures for handling such allegations in ways that try to protect the alleged victim while allowing the alleged perpetrator a presumption of innocence - a difficult balancing act.

However, I would argue that one of the highest institutions in the land, which deals with child abuse on a daily basis, is ill equipped for such a role. The absence of a publicly funded investigative capacity in the Family Court of Australia when there are allegations of child abuse by a parent gives defacto support to the operation of the Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) paradigm in the courts.

PAS - invented by American psychologist Richard Gardner - begins from the premise that children who allege serious abuse by a parent are lying and that they are made to lie by an apparently protective parent. Without a publicly funded professional child protection investigative service available to inform the family court, the private adversarial system of family law commonly fails to substantiate allegations of child abuse, thereby systematically producing the outcome that child abuse allegations will be deemed to be false. PAS thus offers violent controlling ex-partners a pseudo-scientific set of "symptoms" to deny allegations of child abuse and pathologise the alleging child and protective parent. Link                      Hard copy


Via Saving Damon Link Excerpts “But the ole boys aren't giving up their entitlement to sexually assault their children without a major fight: Now that they cannot so easily blame the children for imagining or desiring the sex,

their BACKLASH involves shifting the blame to the mother with a new bogus theory:

Parental Alienation Theory

The valid research which shows sexual abuse by fathers is common and extremely damaging is being dismissed, and valid investigative protocols are not being followed by Family Court officials who continue to enable predatory fathers.

Same ol' dirty tactics o cover up the same ol' dirty secret.

But we're not giving up, shutting up or going away this time!

For the first time in history we will unite, hold our ground and WE WILL WIN.  Link                  hard copy

Kids sent to Deprogramming Camps  

(AKA Boarding Schools, Wilderness Camps, Boot Camps, Residential Treatment Centers via Saving Damon

Link Excerpts "Reunification Therapy" is often tried before children are sent to a camp.  A handful of known local psychologists use the stealth method of "deprogramming" kids, which is often very effective, as the kids don't realize their heads are slowly being filled with lies and distortions, i.e. brainwashed.  There is much father exalting and mother blaming and denigrating.  They are encouraged to distance themselves from mom, forget about the abuse, and accept living with the abuser.  Bribery often seals the deal.  They are sucked into the cover up and many won't have a relationship with mom unless she agrees to stay quiet about the abuse and go along with them living with the abuser.  This is what happened to Damon's brothers, Evan and Ryan.  It did not work on Damon, who is amazingly strong, so if he is caught, he is likely to be sent to a camp to finish off the job.  See:  Brainwashing Damon, in his own Words     Link                                 Hard copy

Experts Warn About Dangers of Deprogramming Treatment Via The Leadership Council  treatment for parental alienation Link Excerpts “Experts Warn About Dangers of Deprogramming Treatment February 10, 2009: Specialists in childhood trauma and therapy from the Leadership Council have grave concerns about the ethics of deprogramming treatment described in a recent article published in the Globe and Mail (see:Judge Blocks Sending Teen for Deprogramming Treatment, Feb 7, 2009).We support the decision of the judge who refused to court-order deprogramming treatment (sometime called Reunification Therapy) overturning a 2008 arbitrator's order that the 14-year-old boy be coercively treated. The controversial treatment is designed to “deprogram” children who are “alienated” from one of their parents during divorce”. see link    Hard copy

Judge blocks sending teen for deprogramming treatment KIRK MAKIN Published Saturday, Feb. 07, 2009 12:00AM EST Last updated Friday, Apr. 10, 2009 8:10AM EDT


An Ontario judge yesterday blocked an attempt to forcibly send a Toronto child for deprogramming treatment in a controversial parental-alienation program in California.

Madam Justice Thea Herman of the Superior Court became the first judge to rule against the controversial treatment orders, overturning a 2008 arbitrator's order that the 14-year-old boy be coercively treated.

"The remedy of the Family Workshop, as acknowledged by the arbitrator and the parties, is an extreme one," Judge Herman said in her ruling. "That means that caution should be exercised in awarding such a remedy."   Link      Hard copy

Experts Warn About Dangers of Deprogramming Treatment via Link Excerpts “We support the decision of the judge who refused to court-order deprogramming treatment (sometime called Reunification Therapy) overturning a 2008 arbitrator's order that the 14-year-old boy be coercively treated. The controversial treatment is designed to “deprogram” children who are “alienated” from one of their parents during divorce.

Various forms of this type of “treatment” have sprung up over the last decade. The therapy usually involves confining the child in a location away from home, and isolating the child from the parent to whom the child is most attached. The attachment to the favored parent is challenged, while encouraging the child with intensive sessions to re-accept the rejected parent.

Some children have reported receiving treatment involving threats and coercion. The child may be told that he or she may not return home until they have accepted a more favorable view of the denigrated parent. One child the LC has interviewed described recurrent nightmares of the de-programming episodes that were used on him. In addition, there have been several lawsuits related to this type of approach. (see:  Link            HArd copy


Link    Excerpts “One of the concrete dangers of this type of therapy is that it has been used to force children into reunification with adults that have committed violent crimes against them, thus putting the children at risk of further victimization.  

The Leadership Council has spoken with several victims of this type of therapy who were traumatized by the treatment. One young man says he continues to have flashbacks from his forced isolation from his mother and from continually being confronted by a therapist who told him his beliefs were wrong. After reunification with the parent he had been coerced to accept (in this case his father), he discovered that this parent was indeed abusive, his previous beliefs had been correct, and he felt betrayed and maltreated by the courts that had ordered this therapy. This case clearly illustrates that therapy that stems from the agenda of an interested legal party may be detrimental to the autonomy and welfare of the child for whom it is ordered. Link                                               Hard copy

Failure to Protect: The Crisis in America’s Family Courts by Cara Tabachnick Thursday, May 6th, 2010 2:00 am Link Excerpts page 4-5 “Moreover, courts are now often swayed by a concept called “parental alienation syndrome” (PAS), coined by the late psychiatrist and psychoanalyst Dr. Richard A. Gardner in the 1980s to describe situations in which one parent is trying to turn the children against the parent during a divorce process. Dr. Gardner, a former professor of child psychiatry at the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia University, testified in more than 400 child custody cases about its effect on children.

“PAS has been seized by the Fathers Rights movement as a way to defend husbands and other male partners from what they consider unjust accusations, and it has received support from other psychologists, who deny that it allows genuine child abuse to go unpunished. “If attorneys, child care evaluators, and judges were all doing their job, protective mothers wouldn‟t have anything to fear,” says psychologist Amy J. Baker, author of Adult Children of Parental Alienation Syndrome: Breaking the Ties that Bind.”

“The concept has made little documented headway in the professional and legal field, and the syndrome has been used very rarely in legal precedent. PAS is not included in the most recent American Psychiatric Association‟s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, although the association is currently weighing whether to include it in the 2013 issue of the manual”. Link                                                                                                                                                                                    

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Michigan Supreme Court JANUARY 25, 2016 JANET K. ADKINS, Petitioner, –v– JAMES S. ADKINS, Respondent.

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WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 19, 2015 Craig Childress Tries to Drag Attachment Theory Into the Parental Alienation Swamp POSTED BY JEAN MERCER Link Excerpts “Let’s look at Childress’ claims about treatment of PA effects on children. He rejects the idea that reunification can be facilitated by work with the child and both parents. Instead, he proposes that help can be given only by “protective separation” of the child from the accepted parent. During this period of separation, the child experiences treatment as described by Childress on his web site, with the goal of coming to enjoy and seek to be with the formerly rejected parent. If the child is successful in meeting this goal for 10 weeks, two one-hour Skype or phone sessions per week with the formerly-accepted parent will be allowed. According to Childress, this method empowers the child: “It is in the child’s power to extend or shorten the Treatment period. If the child continues to remain symptomatic [i.e., express rejection of the parent], then the Treatment period can be continued to six months or longer. However, if the child chooses [sic, N.B.] to become non-symptomatic, then the Treatment period can be ended in as little as 8 weeks or less, based on the child’s behavior. “ Childress argues that a study design can be used to demonstrate the effectiveness of this method, but he does not appear to have done this, nor does he take into account the effect of maturational change”.   link       Hard copy

December 9, 2012

Documentary targets family courts and custody evaluators Link Excerpts”” The Collins's long-running custody battle featured allegations of Parental Alienation Syndrome, a controversial syndrome in which one parent (most often the mother) is accused of alienating the children from the other parent. Collins was also labeled with another highly contentious diagnosis, Munchausen by Proxy, after she sought medical treatment for her children, whom she says were being injured by their father’s abuse and neglect”.

“Due in part to Collins's supposed attempts to alienate the children, the father was granted full custody in 1993, and Collins was initially denied even phone or mail contact. Eventually, she was granted supervised visitation, but neither she nor her children were allowed to talk about the father’s abuse. In the film, Collins describes how she and the children secretly exchanged notes by placing them in the refrigerator; in the notes, the children begged for help and she finally promised to rescue them”. Link                                       Hard copy

Court of appeal California Nov. 2011 Los angeles county

Excerpts See table of contents page 4 “A. Pas is a theory created to negate abuse claims “    

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Review: Sexual Assault Report

Review by Eileen King, in Sexual Assault Report, May/June 2005 Link Excerpts “The authors trace the misery wrought by pseudo-scientific theories like “Parental Alienation Syndrome” and “Malicious Mother Syndrome” created respectively by Richard Gardner, M.D. (deceased) and Ira Turkat, Ph.D. as well as the misuse of Munchausen's by Proxy, none of which are in the DSMIV, the “bible” of mental health diagnosis. In case after case, judges have ignored or minimized solid evidence of abuse in favor of these unsupported theories. It is not unusual that single allegation of “coaching” or “parental alienation” against a mother is enough to trigger a change in custody to the alleged abuser.

Judges and the auxiliary personnel -- law guardians, social services, mental health experts -- each have their own chapter. Brief quotes from these chapters will give the thrust of Neustein and Lesher's trenchant observations:

Judges: “Generally, … an abuse case is transformed, unofficially, into an inquisition into the complaining mother's character, with a judge apparently finding so many reasons to criticize the mother that he has no time to investigate whether her charges are justified.” see link                                                                 Hard copy

‘It Should Not Hurt to Be a Child’ April 29, 2011 08:07:08 am By Eileen King Link Excerpts “Who wants to hear that no amount of money can assure justice in systems that disbelieve children and distrust protective parents? “It is, however, a grim reality.  Parents who act appropriately and lawfully to protect their children may be punished by family court judges for reporting abuse or for refusing to force their terrified child to visit an abusive parent.”  

“In the worst cases, custody is reversed and the protective parent may be denied any contact with his or her child.  The message: failure to be a “friendly parent” is worse than child physical or sexual abuse”.

“The non-profit agency I work for, Justice for Children, often finds itself on the front lines of complex cases of child abuse, arising during separation and divorce,  that may be litigated for years. Although Child Protective Services (CPS) investigates abuse reports, these cases are generally treated with suspicion and ruled out as “custody battles” despite urgent, compelling evidence”.  Link                                     Hard copy

Child Abuse Professionals Rally Around American Fugitive Returning to the US After 14 Years in Hiding Released: 24-Sep-2008 2:00 PM EDT  Source Newsroom: Leadership Council Link Excerpts “The court acknowledged abuse had taken place but was swayed by the bogus legal argument that the children's fears were a result of "Parental Alienation Syndrome," a legal strategy of accused abusers which claims mothers brainwash children into false abuse disclosures. Holly Ann was allowed only limited, supervised visitations in which the children where forbidden to talk to their mother about the abuse or show her their bruises. When they were 9 and 11, Jennifer and Zachary passed her secret notes during supervised visits begging to be rescued from their father's home.

“Jennifer Collins, now a 23 year old psychology student, clearly remembers the abuse and wants to help other children forced to live with abusive parents. Jennifer was invited to tell her story to an audience of mental health professionals working in the field of family violence at the 13th International Conference on Violence, Abuse and Trauma in San Diego on September 17, 2008. Over a thousand attendees were riveted by her account of her escape from child abuse and gave her a standing ovation as she received a medal of courage from the California Protective Parents Association and the Leadership Council on Child Abuse and Interpersonal Violence”.   Link                                                   Hard copy

Disciplining Divorcing Parents: The Social Construction of Parental Alienation Syndrome by FRANCOISE T. BESSETTE Queen’s University Kingston, Ontario, Canada September, 2008 Link Excerpts see section “PAS as the “Sexist Diagnosis”page 86-96 Excerpts page 96 last paragraph “A new twist to the rhetoric of parental alienation syndrome is the goal of realigning its sexist flavour with a more gender-neutral definition. After years of pathologizing women, before this death, Richard Gardner reversed his sexist position and included fathers as equally capable of alienating. However, since he did not rescind his writings, this last ditch effort carried little weight, and for feminists, the misogynistic nature of his work is still inescapable.” see link                                                                                    Hard copy

CA NOW FAMILY COURT REPORT 2002 SUMMARY REPORT SUMMARY Link  Excerpts “B . C A S E  S I M I L A R I T I E S Review of the questionnaires revealed the following similarities: “

“2. Use of sexist false syndromes: In virtually all of the cases involving allegations of abuse, and in many not involving abuse issues, the “experts” labeled the mother as “overprotective” or “alienating” and on such basis recommended changing custody to the father, regardless of evidence proving sexual or physical abuse, criminal history, domestic violence or substance abuse against the father.CA NOW’s research into these syndromes indicates that they have been invented for the sole purpose of targeting women in custody disputes, and that they are never used against men under reversed conditions.

3. Suppression of evidence: In virtually all of the cases involving abuse, the evidence of abuse is suppressed and no standard rules of evidence are followed. Since both the mother’s testimony and the relevant evidence have been withheld from the record, there is nothing in the file to suggest that a mistake has been made in judging the case.A judge is free to reject, for example, evidence of abuse of the child in a medical report. Link                                                                             Hard copy

IMPACT LITIGATION By Wendy Murphy Oct. 27, 2014 Link Excerpts “Wendy has filed numerous briefs in state and federal court and with federal agencies on many topics, including:  autonomy theory in rape law; repeal of the “Fresh Complaint” doctrine; reform of rape-shield statutes; jury selection and jury instructions to prevent gender-bias in rape trials; “prior false complaint” evidence; drug and alcohol-facilitated sexual assault; constitutional privacy rights in mental health and medical treatment files; women’s civil rights; military rape trials; admissibility of “grooming” evidence in child sex abuse cases; standing doctrine as applied to victims of violence in criminal cases; due process and equal protection for third-parties in criminal trials; the scientific reliability of traumatic and recovered memories; “Parental Alienation” evidence and biases against protective mothers in family court; the constitutional rights of children as victims in child abuse trials; the withdrawal of consent in rape law; parental rights when rape causes the birth of a child; the rights of disabled crime victims to reasonable accommodations during criminal trials; free speech rights of crime victims; federal jurisdiction over state court proceedings including abstention, preemption, mootness and ripeness; Title IX and Title VIIl; The Clery Act; HIPAA; the “vulnerable victim” standard in federal sentencing law; retroactivity doctrine; voluntary intoxication and diminished capacity; competency and capacity to testify; mistake defenses in rape law; corroboration rules and the definition of consent in rape law; grandparents visitation rights; judicial bias and linguistics and burdens of proof; anti-SLAPP laws on behalf of crime victims; the right of crime victims to a speedy trial, and other provisions of “Victims’ Rights” statutes; testimonial privileges and confidentiality statutes. Read the rest of this article »                  

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THE INCREASED IMPORTANCE OF THE VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN ACT IN A TIME OF ECONOMIC CRISIS HEARING before the COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY UNITED STATES SENATE MAY 5, 2010 Printed for the use of the Committee on the Judiciary Sunday Links Excerpts page 27 3rd paragraph “STATEMENT OF RICHARD J. GELLES, PH.D., DEAN, SCHOOL OF SOCIAL  POLICY & PRACTICE, UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA, PHILADELPHIA,  PENNSYLVANIA Excerpts “Going back to your question about divorce, a divorce that goes on for 12 years, no matter how much violence is in it,  robs the children of that stable caregiving, and there is  absolutely--divorce proceedings where there are allegations of  abuse and counter-allegations, one of the problems besides  resources is that is the epicenter of junk science. People are  allowed to provide expert testimony about whether someone is  abused or someone is not abused or the fictitious parental alienation syndrome. Much of that should be barred from any courtroom and judges should be making decisions based on what
is truly in the best interests of this child so this child does not grow up and be part of the 30 percent and is directed to the 70 percent. Links                                              Hard copy

Family judge orders “reunification therapy” despite children’s fears by Michael Volpe - Sep 23, 2015 Link Excerpts “Yet in August, Judge Gorcyca ruled that the three children must go through reunification therapy, which is followed up with a period of 90 days during which they are forced to live with their father. CDN exclusively reported in August that the father has a history of domestic abuse incidents, including threatening to kill the children and grabbing one of them by the arm and pinning him against a wall. This new revelation clearly shows that Maya Tsimhoni, the mother, was prepared to move forward with parenting time which flies in the face of the allegation that Maya Tsimhoni has been alienating her children from her ex-husband. Allegations that the mother has alienated the children hav been made by the father, Judge Gorcyca, and Lansat, but have not been proven.     Read more at

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Corrupt justice: what happens when judges' bias taints a case? By Peter S. Green and John Mazor Sunday 18 October 201508.00 EDT  East Northport, Long Island link Excerpts “Margaret and Stuart accused one another of mistreating their children. Police and child protection service workers became involved. Kent ordered her to undergo a psychological evaluation, which slammed Margaret as a danger to her children as she was allegedly alienating them from their father. No abuse by either parent was substantiated. Margaret won a court order of protection barring Stuart from contact with her children for a year. But when Kent issued his final decree less than six weeks later, he awarded Stuart full custody, while Margaret was allowed only supervised visits. And he ordered Margaret to pay back half the cost of her nursing degree and to sell her diamond engagement ring and split the proceeds with Stuart. The judge also reversed the support arrangements. While Stuart would pay $1,500 a month in maintenance to Margaret, she now owed Stuart $153.90 a week for the children, even though she was earning about $13,000 a year as a part-time aide in an assisted-living facility”.Link

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Emergency efforts to release teen from group home fail Anna Wolfe, The Clarion-Ledger7:47 p.m. CST December 10, 2015 Link Excerpts “In response to Houff’s emergency motion, the guardian attorney for Blake Cleveland, Monti Bishop, claims that the teenager suffers from parental alienation at the hand of Houff, especially as it relates to the parental kidnapping. Houff defended her decision in court, arguing that she was justified in fleeing. She claims to have received death threats prior to leaving. “There has to be a reason that I’m not in federal prison and that my son has a fear of his father,” Houff said. Bishop writes that it would be in Blake Cleveland’s best interest to develop a relationship with his father “If it wasn’t there in the past, I don’t know if it ever will be,” Blake Cleveland said. Blake Cleveland explained to the court that he was given an option to either live with his father’s side of his family or stay in the group home. He also said that his father inflicted physical and emotional pain when he was younger.

“I just don’t ever want to be back in that situation again,” Blake Cleveland said.   See link                                Hard copy

Australia FEB 6, 2016 The men hijacking family law reforms NIJOLE CORK Link Excerpts “It appears that the overall aims and language of this current motion, supporting papers and proposed changes are tactical and unsubstantiated. They rely on emotive men’s rights rhetoric – “parental alienation”, “false allegations” and “gender inequality” towards men.

This is the language of a virulent lobby group, blindly focused on the rights of fathers. It takes serious concerns, then inflates and distorts them, putting at risk women and children. This is the language of the people who now have family law in their hands”Link

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Abuse and Control When Abusers Become Victims in Court, In Community and at Home by Dr. Jeanne King, Ph.D.

Link Excerpts “Or, you could be in the thralls of long drawn out divorce and custody dispute, and you find yourself accused of parental alienation. Your soon-to-be ex campaigns the court to recognize that you are interfering with his relationship with “his” children when the children fear his company and resist visitation.

You could even be labeled as a parental alienator if your kids do not resist visitation or telephone contact. Being a parental alienator serves to establish your partner’s victimization and your guilt as an abuser.

Domestic abuse survivors are so puzzled by this perpetrator flip. They cannot believe what’s happening especially when they have suffered blatant obvious forms of domestic abuse by their partner”. Link

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A Cluster B Disordered Court

Posted on October 7, 2015 by admin by Lorrie Eubanks Link Excerpts “Using A Debunked and Controversial Theory To Remove The Children From A Protective Mother And Giving Them To An Abusive Father.

Father alleges that mother (the custodial parent) has alienated the children from him (innocent victim), citing Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS). Gorcyca, Middleditch, and GAL agree. PAS is a controversial topic that reputable scholars believe should not be used in a court of law as it does not meet the Frye test. Even proponents of PAS theoretically argue that it can’t be diagnosed if the “alienated” parent is abusive. In this case, there is a history of documented abuse by father and fear on the part of the children that has been repeatedly suppressed. Gorcyca ordered the father and children into intensive “reunification therapy” last month (PAS protocol), in itself a controversial procedure akin to cult “deprogramming.” Where the children underwent this therapy and who conducted it are unknown as this information was sealed.  Most mental health professionals agree that PAS shouldn’t be allowed in the courtroom. It is not included in the DSM-5, the newest edition of the American Psychological Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the “bible” of psychologists, despite a vocal attempt by supporters to have it included.

Rebecca Davis Merritt had this to say, “Life is very simple when one person or an entire judicial system adopts a confirmation bias. In this instance if an objective is not met, it must be Maya’s fault, no need to examine any other hypothesis. Oakland County Circuit Judge Lisa Gorcyca, Lansat, Omer’s supporters including Middleditch all adopt the confirmation bias.  Link                                                                             Hard copy

BOOK : Home Truths about Child Sexual Abuse: A Reader By Catherine Itzin See pages 42-44 history of parental alienation theory a must read See pages 42-44 history of parental alienation theory a must read Link


Pdf Parental Alienation Syndrome:Not in the best interest of the child by Stephanie Dallam, RN, PhD Link Excerpts Section “Historical Context”

page 42 ““Parental alienation” only began to receive significant attention after presented as reason to disbelieve abuse allegations”


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Maya Tsimhoni Seeks To Hire Lawyer Who Links Parental Alienation with NAMBLA 2015-07-11 by Richard D. Pace

and nambla and richard gardner info. via parentalalienationinventor

Link Excerpts “Even after the children have been released from detention, it has emerged that Maya Tsimhoni desires to hire a lawyer for the children, Jennifer Hoult who “…links those who assert the validity of Parental Alienation with the North American Man-Boy Love Association (NAMBLA).”  While the father has joint custody of the children, the mother is attempting to hire a lawyer for the kids without his permission. Meanwhile, the three separate and independent kids’ lawyers in Michigan all believe the mother should not be with the children.” Link                                  Hard copy

Did n.a.m.b.l.a cite Richard Gardner parental alienation inventor in their reading list? I think yes


Joan S. Meier


  • LACK OF EXPERTISE IN ABUSE including child abuse



Link                                                                   Hard copy

September 24, 2008 Florida National Organization for Women Denounces Parental Alienation Syndrome Link Excerpts “Despite the lack of data to support PAS, the trend to use PAS to undermine women in divorce has grown. Specifically, accusations that one parent has alienated a child against them is used to undermine the rights of women seeking to protect their children from actual domestic violence and abuse. The trend is complicated further when attorneys, judges, court ordered psychologists, and other courtroom officials deny due process to litigants. Statistics have shown that those women fare much worse when accusations of PAS are made against them, even when there is evidence of abuse by the other parent.

"The National Organization for Women has found that the Parental Alienation argument is actually Protective Parenting, turned upside down, giving abusers custody and control" adds Adele Guadalupe, with Florida NOW Child Custody Committee and a founder of Families Against Court Travesties.  Link                 Hard copy

Discredited Junk Science Justifies Custody for Fathers

From Off Our Backs, 1/1/04 by Wilson, Trish via the medical dictionary Link Excerpts “An unfounded psychological theory has been used to unfairly wrest child custody from mothers, threatens to influence more custody cases, even after these theories were discredited.

In some of the worst cases many mothers have been forced to file for bankruptcy as a result of the exorbitant fees paid to court-ordered psychological evaluators, and their contact with the children is severely curtailed.

Parental Alienation Syndrome

The most notorious junk science theory used in custody cases is Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS). Child psychologist Richard Gardner coined PAS in 1985 to describe what he believed to be a high number of false allegations of child sexual abuse in his personal caseload. According to Gardner's theory, "the child viciously vilifies one of the parents and idealizes the other" and in 80 to 90 percent of the cases the father is the vilified one”. See link for rest of article               Hard copy


A Self-Made Man by Judith M. Simon

Copyright 1998 Swans;

Excerpts See link The second category of Dr. Gardner's peer reviewed work consists of articles published in a little-known journal called Issues in Child Abuse Accusations.  I call it "little known" because it hasn't appeared in any of my sessions on MEDLINE, the world's most heavily searched biomedical database.  Issues in Child Abuse Accusations is published by the Institute for Psychological Therapies, which is run by Dr. Ralph Underwager.  Dr. Underwager gained considerable notoriety some years ago when statements he made in an interview for the Dutch journal Paidika: The Journal of Paedophilia were publicized:

  • Paedophiles need to become more positive and make the claim that paedophilia is an acceptable expression of God's will for love and unity among human beings.

Reading through one of Dr. Gardner's articles ('"A Theory About the Variety of Human Sexual Behavior"), it's not hard to understand why his work finds favor with Dr. Underwager. . .

  • . . . Basically, the definition of a pedophile for a psychiatrist is what the nomenclature committee of the American Psychiatric Association considers to be a pedophile for that particular edition of the DSM . . . Pertinent to my theory here is that pedophilia also serves procreative purposes. . .

  • . . . Many societies, however, have been unjustifiably punitive to those who exhibit these paraphilic variations and have not given proper respect to the genetic factors that may very well be operative.  Such considerations might result in greater tolerance for those who exhibit these atypical sexual proclivities.  My hope is that this theory will play a role (admittedly small) in bringing about greater sympathy and respect for individuals who exhibit these variations of sexual behavior. . .  See link  for rest of article         Hard copy

Battered Mothers’ Testimony Project: A Human Rights Approach to Child Custody and Domestic Violence Jill Zuccardy, attorney in Nicholson v. Williams. Arizona Coalition Against Domestic Violence, June 2003 Link Excerpts page 22-23 “Parental Alienation Syndrome Often in custody battles, if a child alleges that the father sexually abused him/her, the father will claim that not only did the child fabricate the complaint but also that the mother coerced the child to make these allegations against the father and thus “trained” the child to fear him.80 Such is the basis of the Parental Alienation Syndrome, a condition arguably identified by Dr. Richard Gardner.81 Instead of focusing on determining whether the accused parent is the untruthful party, PAS assumes that the mother and child are the guilty parties.82 The crux of it is that the mother is so vengeful against the husband that she will do anything to “get back at” him in court. Thus, she “coerces” her child(ren) to invent sexual abuse allegations against their “innocent” father. According to Wood, experts who support PAS argue that any time a child acts ambivalently toward the father, the mothers’ manipulation, and consequently PAS, are present.83”

“In effect, when the accused employs an expert who will testify as to whether PAS has occurred (which usually happens), the expert is testifying as to whether the child has truthfully alleged that the father has sexually abused him/her. Such testimony goes to the credibility of a witness. The Arizona Supreme Court expressly has forbidden such testimony. This is an area that is solely the jury’s concern. In State v. Lindsey, 84 the defendant was convicted of sexual exploitation of a minor. The issue on appeal was the admissibility of the State’s expert witness.85 The Court held that “trial courts should not admit direct expert testimony that quantifies the probabilities of the credibility of another witness.”86 It reasoned that expert testimony is only permissible when the facts of the case are such that comprehension of them is out of the realm of the ordinary juror’s common knowledge.87 “

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Domestic Violence Advocates Sign on to Amicus Brief Questioning Validity of "Parental Alienation" Defense Published on Nov 30, 2011 - 12:20:36 PM By: California Partnership to End Domestic Violence Link SACRAMENTO, Nov. 30, 2011 - The California Partnership to End Domestic Violence (the Partnership), the statewide domestic violence coalition, has signed on to an amicus brief filed last week concerning the case McRoberts v. Superior Court of Los Angeles County. The brief concerns a case in which custody of three children was transferred from their mother, Segalit McRoberts, to their father, despite evidence of his sexual abuse of two of the children.

During the thirty days in which Mr. McRoberts had sole custody, the children were not allowed to see their mother. The children were turned over to their father based on a defense of "Parental Alienation Syndrome" (PAS). PAS is a widely discredited phenomenon commonly invoked in family court proceedings, in which a parent who has been accused of abusing either the children or their spouse, claims that the abuse victim is intentionally "alienating" the children from him or her. The American Psychological Association does not include PAS in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, because there is no scientific evidence of its existence. PAS is often used by abuse perpetrators in court as a way of exerting control over their victims, and manipulating divorce and custody proceedings. The Partnership's Executive Director Tara Shabazz said that her organization joined the amicus brief because of the history of bogus PAS defenses being used to undermine domestic violence victims in court.  "Parental Alienation Syndrome does not exist," she said. "It's a travesty to see children taken from their mother and turned over to an abusive parent, as happened in the McRoberts case. It's time for the family court system to recognize that PAS testimony can't withstand scientific or legal scrutiny."

To read the full amicus brief, click here. Link                                                Hard copy

Alec Baldwin uses excuse of scientifically discredited Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) on 20/20 interview with Diane Sawyer NOVEMBER 17, 2008 BY HOFHEIMERFAMILYLAW   Link Excerpts “On Friday, September 19, 2008, Alec Baldwin appeared on a 20/20 interview with Diane Sawyer to promote his book. Blaming his outrageous voice mail message to his daughter and his multi-million dollar divorce litigation on the scientifically discredited theory of "Parental Alienation Syndrome," Baldwin attempted to portray himself as a victim of former wife Kim Basinger, and as a victim of his daughter. Interviewer Diane Sawyer did not fall for Baldwin's self-portrayal as a victim, and asked Baldwin difficult questions, to which he attempted to object off-camera. Sawyer turned the cameras back on and confronted Baldwin about his off-camera accusations that Sawyer was being biased against him. Both Baldwin and Sawyer alluded to Baldwin storming off several times during the interview. Baldwin was visibly agitated and sweating during the interview, and did not have a good answer for Sawyer's question to him about the impact on his daughter of Baldwin's book, and his vilification of Basinger in the book. Professor Joan Meier did an excellent job addressing the fact that Parental Alienation Syndrome is not accepted as a valid syndrome within the scientific community.” Link                       Hard copy

Child Custody Case Study - Part 4  Tuesday, 13 January 2015 Marrison Family Law 225 E Cheyenne Mountain Blvd Colorado Springs, CO 80906 Excerpts see link The problem was that Dr. Holmes relied on the theory of “Parental Alienation Syndrome” to explain Maggie Bright’s actions, a controversial idea originated by Richard A. Gardner in the mid 1980s which later had been almost universally discredited. "...a controversial idea that had been almost universally discredited." Gardner’s Parental Alienation Syndrome suggested that many cases where a child is alienated from the father are instigated by an “indoctrinating” mother and cooperating child. One way to remedy the problem, according to Gardner, is to place the child with the father, significantly remove the mother’s access to the child, and require the child to be “deprogrammed” through therapy.The Doctor Said One Thing, but his Recommendations Said Something Entirely Different In his own defense, Dr. Holmes claimed that he didn’t really believe in Gardner’s original “Parental Alienation Syndrome,” but a derivative theory of “Parental Alienation” by Joan B. Kelly and Janet R. Johnston which placed a much greater emphasis on a “family system” and shared responsibility approach to alienation problems. But Dr. Holmes’ pre-trial report contradicted his own words. He may have testified in court that he was now a believer in the “reformulated” Parental Alienation theory of Kelly and Johnston. LInk                                                                                                                                  Hard Copy

Dealing with a Custody Evaluator Lundy Bancroft Link Excerpts “In recent years, both custody evaluators and abusive men themselves have developed increasingly distorted reasoning for blaming abused mothers for their children’s reactions. Mothers who take appropriate protective steps — such as reporting to the court what their children have told them about incidents during visitation — can get labeled as guilty of “parental alienation”. Children’s detailed and explicit disclosures of sexual abuse are sometimes dismissed with a quick wave of the hand by an evaluator or judge who declares, “The child is just trying to please the mother by joining her in her campaign against the father.”

I do encounter cases where the custody evaluator has caught on to the abuser’s mentality and tactics, and has taken seriously the risk to the children of being drawn in by him as pawns, but this outcome appears to be more the exception than the rule. So I recommend that you cautiously follow the steps below when dealing with a custody evaluation:

Don’t request or voluntarily accept the appointment of a custody evaluator unless you know who the evaluator will be, and know how that person has dealt with other abuse cases. Abused mothers often feel, understandably, that as soon as a trained professional looks carefully at the facts and sees the effects on the children, he or she will of course stop letting the abuser get away with what he’s been doing, and will allow the mother to protect her children. But the reality is often otherwise. More often than not, custody evaluators are committed to the belief that children must have extensive involvement with both parents, and often refuse to look carefully at evidence of abuse.  Link                                                   Hard copy

We were sent to juvenile detention for refusing to live with our father Stop locking kids up to enforce bad parental custody agreements By Hope Loudon and Elizabeth Loudon August 3, 2015 link Excerpts “Like the judge in Omer Tsimhoni’s case, our father invoked the concept of “parental alienation syndrome” to discredit our charges of mistreatment. It’s a claim parents in custody battles often exploit to accuse their ex-spouses of brainwashing their children to turn against them, convincing mediators that the children have been coached to lie. As a result, bad parenting and abuse go uninvestigated and children are returned to violent and emotionally damaging homes. In extreme cases, the child or the protective parent is incarcerated for refusing to obey the court’s custody or visitation order”. link                       Hard copy

Representing Protective Mothers in Custody and Visitation Litigation By Lundy Bancroft September 2011 Michigan Bar Journal link Excerpts page 2 “Abusers employ an array of tactics to discredit abuse allegations, usually involving counter-accusations against the mother. Among the most common is the charge of “parental alienation.” This charge is without scientific validity as a purported cause of abuse allegations.8 Attorneys should challenge the admissibility of evidence of alienation; admittance of this evidence is potential grounds for appeal”.  Link

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M.C. Moewe and the Story That Got Away -- Rogers Cadenhead 2014/07/14 03:35 PM Link Excerpts “You know how on cop shows there's often a veteran detective who can't let go of an unsolved case for years? My wife M.C. Moewe has been like that because of a story she reported that no publication will touch.

She's a former investigative reporter who worked at the Daytona Beach News-Journal, Fort Worth Star-Telegram and other newspapers.

Around a decade ago a big assignment was dropped on her desk: Family courts were giving custody of kids to a parent accused of sexual abuse and denying custody to the parent who alleged abuse -- even when credible evidence and experts raised alarms. Judges were delegating their responsibility to investigate to custody evaluators, experts shielded from legal liability who claimed that the concerned parent suffered from Parental Alienation Syndrome, a discredited psychiatric theory employed to completely dismiss allegations a child is being abused by a parent.  Link                                                  Hard copy  

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