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Keeping Kids Out Of The Middle,

Keeping Families Out Of Court:
A child-centered view of
co-parental conflict and family transition


(c) Benjamin D. Garber, Ph.D.
31 March, 2017

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Better Options Initiative, Inc.
Lafayette, Louisiana
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Keeping Kids Out of the Middle



Developmental Psychology For Family Law
                          Professionals



Holding Tight/Letting Go

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These materials are provided for educational purposes only.
Please do not distribute or allow persons not enrolled in the seminar to access this page.


Resources and citations  in order of appearance
(use CNTRL + F to search this page for keywords)


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Dr. Garber's select publications:
Garber, Benjamin D. (2015). Cognitive-behavioral methods in high conflict divorce: Systematic desensitization adapted to parent-child reunification interventions. Family Court Review, 53(1), 96-112. Access here

Garber, Benjamin D. (2014). The chameleon child: Children as actors in the high conflict divorce drama. Journal of Child Custody, 11, 1-16.
Access here
Garber, Benjamin D. (2012) Security by association? Mapping attachment theory onto family law practice. Family Court Review, 50(3), 467-470.
Access here
Garber, Benjamin D. (2011). Parental alienation and the dynamics of the enmeshed dyad: Adultification, parentification and infantilization. Family Court Review, 49(2), 322-335.
Access here
Garber, B. (2007). Conceptualizing visitation resistance and refusal in the context of parental conflict, separation and divorce. Family Court Review, (4)1, 588-599.
Access here
Garber, Benjamin D. (2007). Developing a structured interview tool for children embroiled in family litigation and forensic mental health services: The Query Grid. Journal of Forensic Psychology Practice, 7(1), 1-18.
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Garber, B. (2004). Therapist alienation: Foreseeing and forestalling third party dynamics undermining psychotherapy with children of conflicted caregivers. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 35(4).
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Garber, Benjamin D. (February, 2001). ADHD or not ADHD: Custody and visitation considerations. New Hampshire Bar News, New Hampshire Bar Assn.
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Gould , J. W. Martindale , D. A. (2007). The art and science of child custody evaluations. New York: Wiley.

Pickar, D. B. (2007). On being a child custody evaluator: Professional and personal challenges, risks, and rewards. Family Court Review, 45(1), 103-115.

Jean Clinton, M.D. AFCC 2012  Annual Convention (Quote from keynote, Third Plenary)
Chicago, Illinois

Harry F. Harlow, “Love in Infant Monkeys,” Scientific American 200 (June 1959):68, 70, 72-73, 74
See related YouTube video
Kaslow, F. W., & Schwartz, L. L. (1987). Frontiers in couples and family therapy. The dynamics of divorce: A life cycle perspective. Philadelphia: Brunner/Mazel.

Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (2006). Custody Evaluation Practice Standards.
Access here
A.C. v. Manitoba (Director of Child and Family Services), 2009 SCC 30
Access here
Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Prosser in Dane County v. Sheila W., 2013 WI 63 (July 10, 2013)
Access here
Yates, Susanne & Pliner, Anita (1988). Judging Maturity in the Courts:
The Massachusetts Consent Statute.  American Journal of Public Health, 78(6), 646-649.

Schlam, L., & Wood, J. P. (2000). Informed consent to the medical treatment of minors: Law and practice. Health Matrix: Journal of Law-Medicine, 10, 141-174.

Cauffman, E., & Steinberg, L. (2000b). Researching adolescent's decision making relevant to culpability, In T. Grisso & R. Schwartz (Eds.), Youth on Trial, Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Access here

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Grisso et al., (2003). Juveniles’ Competence to Stand Trial: A Comparison of Adolescents’ and Adults’ Capacities as Trial Defendants. Law and Human Behavior,  p. 357
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Elisabeth Bach-Van Horn, (2008). Virtual Visitation: Are Webcams Being Used as an Excuse to Allow Relocation?, 21 Journal of American Academy of Matrimonial Law, 171, 172.

Main, M., & Solomon, J. (1986). Discovery of an insecure-disorganized/disoriented attachment pattern. In T. B. Brazelton & M. W. Yogman (Eds.), Affective development in infancy (pp. 95-124). Westport, CT: Ablex Publishing.

George, C., & Solomon, J. (1999). Attachment and caregiving: The caregiving behavioral system. In J. Cassidy & P. R. Shaver (Eds.), Handbook of attachment: Theory, research, and clinical applications (pp. 649-670). New York: Guilford Press.
Crosby-Currie, Catherine A. (1996). Children's Involvement in Contested Custody Cases: Practices and Experiences of Legal and Mental Health Professionals. Law and Human Behavior, 20(3),p. 291

Perkins J., in S.P. v. P.B.D., 2007, Ontario, Canada, Supreme Court
Access here
Drapak v. Drapak, 1986 688, Saskatchewan Queen’s Bench
Access here
Jordana v. Corley, 220 N.W.2d 515, North Dakota, 1974
Access here
Luecken, Linda J.; Hagan, Melissa J.; Wolchik, Sharlene A.; Sandler, Irwin N.; Tein, Jenn-Yun (2016). A longitudinal study of the effects of child-reported maternal warmth on cortisol stress response 15 years after parental divorce. Psychosomatic Medicine, Vol 78(2), Feb-Mar 2016, 163-170. Access here
Hagan, Melissa J.; Luecken, Linda J.; Modecki, Kathryn L.; Sandler, Irwin N.; Wolchik, Sharlene A. (2016). Childhood negative emotionality predicts biobehavioral dysregulation fifteen years later. Emotion, 877-885.
Access here

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Kandel, R. F. (1994). Just Ask the Kid: Towards a Rule of Children's Choice in Custody Determinations. University of Miami Law School Institutional Repository>
Access resource here
Garber, Benjamin D. (2011). Parental alienation and the dynamics of the enmeshed dyad: Adultification, parentification and infantilization. Family Court Review, 49(2), 322-335.
Access resource here
Burton, Linda (2007). Childhood adultification in economically disadvantaged families: A conceptual model. Family Relations, 56, 329-345
Access here
Stephens, D. L. (1999). Battered women's views of their children. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 14, 731-746.

Puig, M. E. (2002). The adultification of refugee children: Implications for cross-cultural social work practice. Journal of Human Behavior in the Social Environment, 5, 85-95.

Walsh, S., Shulman, S., Bar-On, Z., & Tsur, A. (2006). The role of parentification and family climate in adaptation among immigrant adolescents in Israel. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 16, 321–350.

Burnett, G., Jones, R. A., Bliwise, N. G., & Ross, L. T. (2006). Family unpredictability, parental alcoholism, and the development of parentification. American Journal of Family Therapy, 34, 181-189

Garber, Benjamin D. (2009). Developmental psychology for family law professionals. New York: Springer.

Jacobvitz, D., Riggs, S., & Johnson, E. (1999). Cross-sex and same-sex family alliances: Immediate and long-term effects on sons and daughters. In N. D. Chase (Ed.), Burdened children: Theory, research, and treatment of parentification  (pp. 34–55). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Peris, T. S., & Emery, R. E. (2005). Redefining the parent-child relationship following divorce: Examining the risk for boundary dissolution. Journal of Emotional Abuse, 5(4), 169-189.

Peris, T.S.; Goeke-Morey, M.C.; Cummings, E.M. & Emery, R.E. (2008). Marital conflict and support seeking by parents in adolescence: Empirical support for the parentification construct. Journal of Family Psychology, 22(4), 633-642.
Access here

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Wells, M., Glickauf-Hughes, C., & Jones, R. 1999. Codependency: A grass roots construct's relationship to shame-proneness, low self-esteem, and childhood parentification. American Journal of Family Therapy, 27: 63-71.

Boyd-Franklin, N. (1989). Black families in therapy: A multisystems approach.New York: Guilford Press

Oznobishin, Olga and Kurman, Jenny (2009). Parent–child role reversal and psychological adjustment among immigrant youth in Israel. Journal of Family Psychology, 23(3), 405-415.
Access here
McMahon, T. J., & Luthar, S. S. (2007). Defining characteristics and potential consequences of caretaking burden among children living in poverty. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 77, 267-281.

Grollman, E.A. & Sweder, G. (1986). The working parent dilemma. Boston: Beacon.

Duryea, M. M. (2007). Mothers with chronic physical illness and the parentification of their children. Retrieved 12.21.2009 from https://repository.unm.edu/dspace/bitstream/1928/3608/1/Duryea_Dissertation.pdf
Access here
Tompkins, T. L. (2007). Parentification and maternal HIV infection: Beneficial role or pathological burden? Journal of Child and Family Studies, 16, 113-125

Wells, M., Glickauf-Hughes, C., & Jones, R. 1999. Codependency: A grass roots construct's relationship to shame-proneness, low self-esteem, and childhood parentification. American Journal of Family Therapy, 27: 63-71.

Fitzgerald, Monica M.; Schneider, Renee A.; Salstrom, Seoka; Zinzow, Heidi M.; Jackson, Joan & Fossel, Rebecca V. (2008). Child sexual abuse, early family risk, and childhood parentification: Pathways to current psychosocial adjustment. Journal of Family Psychology, 22(2), 320-324.

Jurkovic, G. (1997). Lost childhood: The plight of the parentified child. New York: Brunner/Mazel

Bogolub, Ellen (1984). Symbiotic mothers and infantilized only children: A subtype of single-parent family. Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal, 1(2), 89-101

Kinscherff, R., & Ayoub, C. C. (2000). Legal aspects of Munchausen by proxy. In R. M. Reece (ed.), Treatment of child abuse. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.


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A.A. v. S.N.A., 2007 British Columbia Supreme Court 594
Access here
Lindahl, Mary W. (2009). Beyond Munchausen by Proxy: A Proposed Conceptualization for Cases of Recurring, Unsubstantiated Sexual Abuse Allegations. Journal of Child Sexual Abuse, 18(2), 206-220
Naegele, Thomas & Clark, Alan (2001). Forensics Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy: An Emerging Subspecies of Child Sexual Abuse. Forensic Examiner,  10(3/4), 21-23
Smart, C. (2002). From children’s shoes to children’s voices. Family Court Review, 40, 297-306
Access here
Johnston, J. R., Walters, M. G., & Olesen, N. W. (2005). Is it alienating parenting, role reversal, or child abuse? A study of children's rejection of a parent in child custody disputes.  Journal of Emotional Abuse, 5(4), p. 191.
Access here
Friedlander, S., & Walters, M. (2010). When a child rejects a parent: Tailoring the intervention to fit the problem. Family Court Review, 48, p. 100.
Access here
Sigal, A., Sandler, I., Wolchik, S. and Braver, S. (2011), Do parent education programs promote healthy post-divorce parenting? Critical distinctions and a  review of the evidence. Family Court Review, 49: p. 135.

Fackrell, T. A., Hawkins, A. J. and Kay, N. M. (2011), How effective are court-affiliated divorcing parents education programs? A meta-analytic study. Family Court Review, 49: p. 114.

Schramm, D. G., & Calix, S. (2011). Focus on Kids: Evaluation of a research-based divorce education program. Journal of Divorce & Remarriage, 52(7), p. 529.

Association for Family and Conciliation Courts (2010). Guidelines for Court-Involved Therapy.
Access here
Association for Family and Conciliation Courts (2005). Guidelines for Parenting Coordination.
Access here

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Sample Service Agreement:
Conducting psychotherapy with a child whose parents are
conflicted, separated and/or divorced




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Family Portrait

P!nk

Uh, uh, some deep shit, uh, uh

Momma please stop cryin, I can't stand the sound
Your pain is painful and its tearin' me down
I hear glasses breakin as I sit up in my bed
I told dad you didn't mean those nasty things you
said

You fight about money, bout me and my brother
And this I come home to, this is my shelter
It ain't easy growin up in World War III
Never knowin what love could be, you'll see
I don't want love to destroy me like it has done
my family

Can we work it out? Can we be a family?
I promise I'll be better, Mommy I'll do anything
Can we work it out? Can we be a family?
I promise I'll be better, Daddy please don't
leave

Daddy please stop yellin, I can't stand the sound

Make mama stop cryin, cuz I need you around
My mama she loves you, no matter what she says
its true
I know that she hurts you, but remember I love
you, too

I ran away today, ran from the noise, ran away
Don't wanna go back to that place, but don't have
no choice, no way
It ain't easy growin up in World War III
Never knowin what love could be, well I've seen
I don't want love to destroy me like it did my
family

Can we work it out? Can we be a family?
I promise I'll be better, Mommy I'll do anything
Can we work it out? Can we be a family?
I promise I'll be better, Daddy please don't
leave

In our family portrait, we look pretty happy
Let's play pretend, let's act like it comes
naturally
I don't wanna have to split the holidays
I don't want two addresses
I don't want a step-brother anyways
And I don't want my mom to have to change her
last name

In our family portrait we look pretty happy
We look pretty normal, let's go back to that
In our family portrait we look pretty happy
Let's play pretend, act like it goes naturally

In our family portrait we look pretty happy
(Can we work it out? Can we be a family?)
We look pretty normal, let's go back to that
(I promise I'll be better, Mommy I'll do
anything)
In our family portrait we look pretty happy
(Can we work it out? Can we be a family?)
Let's play pretend act and like it comes so
naturally
(I promise I'll be better, Daddy please don't
leave)
In our family portrait we look pretty happy
(Can we work it out? Can we be a family?)
We look pretty normal, let's go back to that
(I promise I'll be better, Daddy please don't
leave)

Daddy don't leave
Daddy don't leave
Daddy don't leave
Turn around please
Remember that the night you left you took my
shining star?
Daddy don't leave
Daddy don't leave
Daddy don't leave
Don't leave us here alone

Mom will be nicer
I'll be so much better, I'll tell my brother
Oh, I won't spill the milk at dinner
I'll be so much better, I'll do everything right
I'll be your little girl forever
I'll go to sleep at night

Songwriters: Alecia Moore / Alecia B Moore / Scott Storch / Scott Spencer Storch

Family Portrait lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC


Access the SIMS video created by MusicMAAD here: Access here


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