Key findings from the survey were:
- Almost half of respondents have not seen their child for more than six months.
- 1 in 10 have not seen their child for more than 5 years.
- 58% have had their child arrangement orders breached, most multiple times.
- 80% have experienced adverse health impacts.
- 55% have suffered serious financial impact.
- 16 respondents had contemplated or attempted suicide.
Jan James, CEO of Good Egg Safety CIC, said:
“We challenge anyone to read this report and not feel deeply moved by it. It is the worst social issue we have ever encountered. The harmful parental behaviours identified exposed a clear pattern of psychological abuse and coercive control.
“It is imperative this brutal form of family violence – where children are effectively used as weapons against one of their parents – be included within our new Domestic Abuse Bill.”
Examples of abuse included:
- Repeated denigration and devaluing of the victim mothers and fathers.
- Isolating children from their mothers or fathers and their wider family.
- Causing financial hardship – where victim parents were forced to attend court to get to see their own children.
- Interfering with parental responsibility.
- Making false allegations of abuse, fitness to parent, substance abuse, or mental health difficulties.
- Interfering constantly with child-parent time.
- Destroying or disposing of gifts, mementos, photographs, and letters from the co-parent.
- Burdening their child with angry or emotional outbursts to discourage visits.
After more than a year’s research into this issue, Good Egg Safety found that children are losing safe mothers, fathers, grandparents, and wider family members without justification. It denies children their basic human right (UNCRC Article 9) to be loved, supported, and nurtured by both their parents and, inevitably, destroys their victim parent in the process. Research shows that any child who experiences the sudden or cumulative disruption of a previously strong parent-child attachment suffers grievously.
Parental separation is the most prevalent adverse childhood experience (ACE), and according to the latest report from our Children’s Commissioner, one in eight children have now been diagnosed with at least one mental health disorder. The separation of their parents was the most common adverse life event identified.
It is a scientifically proven fact that children’s neurological and social development is optimized by growing up with a secure attachment to both their parents and wider family. Yet, in the tragic cases contained within the study, the entire half of children’s familial heritage had been wiped out, to the extreme detriment of the children and parents involved.
Jan James added:
“This is a legislative, mental health, and public health issue of incomprehensible magnitude. But most urgently of all, and why Good Egg Safety is involved, it is a serious child protection issue. We need to protect children from the most damaging form of psychological abuse: manipulation into rejecting their safe parents and wider family.
“If we take no action, we become complicit in the wholesale destruction of safe families and children’s future mental health and well-being.”
LINK TO SURVEY STUDY: https://www.canva.com/design/DAEAF75oOd0/view
Victim and expert statements:
Notes for Editors:
The survey, which remains live, ran from May to December 2019, when it was evaluated. It has generated over 2,000 self-completions with more than 1,500 from the UK. It is the largest survey ever undertaken in the UK on the issue of parental alienation.
Good Egg Safety CIC is a leading campaigner on child safety and has worked on a wide range of social justice and community safety programmes on behalf of Local Authorities, UK, and Scottish Governments since 2001.
Good Egg Safety CIC is a gender-inclusive organization with no vested financial interests in this area.
We would like to express our gratitude to the many experts in the UK and across the world who freely gave us their time to assist in this research. They represent multi-disciplines including Expert Witnesses in Child Psychiatry, Forensic Clinical Psychology, and Specialist Family Therapy, the legal profession, social work, educational institutions, and leading Charities.
We especially want to express our gratitude and admiration for the thousands of victim mothers, fathers, grandparents, and wider family members who inspired us with their courage and compassion, while facing the biggest challenge of their lives: To protect, love and spend precious time with their children.
This report is dedicated to them.
Facebook and Twitter: @PAlienationUK
SOURCE Good Egg Safety CIC