1. Most of the research to date has shown that the mother is
significantly more likely to be the alienating parent and the father the target
parent. However, we note that there is a fair amount of controversy in the field
regarding the conclusion that more mothers alienate than fathers, and wish to
emphasize that in many cases we personally have seen, it is the father who alienates and
the mother who is the target.
2. See, Lamb, M.E.(ed.) In Non-Traditional Families,
"Effects of Divorce on Parents & Children" by Hetherington, E.M.; Cox, M.;
Cox, R. (1982). See also, Wallerstein, J. & Kelly, J.S., Surviving the Breakup:
How children and Parents Cope with Divorce, (1980); J. Wallerstein & S. Blakeslee,
Second Chances: Men, Women and Children a Decade after Divorce: Who Wins, Loses and Why
3. Johnston, J.R. & Campbell, L.E.G., Impasses of Divorce
"Forward" by J. Wallerstein, p.ix (1988)
4. Hodges, William F. Interventions for Children of Divorce at 151
5. Gardner, Richard, The Parental Alienation Syndrome (1992).
6. Johnston, Impasses of Divorce see Endnote #2.
7. "Families First" is a program currently mandated in
several cities/counties in Georgia, Florida, Indiana, Texas, Illinois, Michigan, and
Louisiana, among other states.
8. California (The Family Act, Sec. 4607, The Civil Code), Maine (19
Maine Revised Statutes 214.4), North Carolina (7A North Carolina Revised Statutes 494) and
Wisconsin (767.001 Wisconsin Revised Statutes) require mediation for custody cases.
9. Zirps, Fotena A., Ph.D. Children Cope with Divorce -- Follow-up
Study, Cobb County, Families First, Atlanta, Georgia, (1992).
10. Code of Professional Conduct Rule 2.1.
11. Code of Professional Conduct Rule 3.1.
12. American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, Standards of Conduct Rule
2.25 An attorney should not contest child custody or visitation for either financial
leverage or vindictiveness. Comment: ..."Proper consideration of the welfare of the
children requires that they not be used as pawns in the adversary process. If
despite the attorney's advice the client persists, the attorney should seek to
Rule 2.27 An attorney should refuse to assist in vindictive conduct
toward a spouse or third party and should not do anything to increase the emotional level
of the dispute. Comment: ..."If...the client...asks the attorney to engage in conduct
the attorney believes to be imprudent or repugnant, the attorney should attempt to
convince the client to work toward family harmony or in the interests of the
children. Conduct in the interests of the children or the family will almost always
be in the client's long term interests."
13. American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, Standards of Conduct Rule
2.24: When issues in a representation affect the welfare of a child, an attorney
should not initiate communication with the child, except in the presence of the child's
lawyer or guardian ad litem. with court permission, or as necessary to verify facts in
motions and pleadings.
14. Ross v. Gadwah, 131 N.H. 391 (1988).
15. Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20 U.S.C. S 1400 et
16. See N.H. Standards for the Education of Handicap Students, Chapt.
Ed. S 1109 (1988)
17. Hodges, see Endnote #4. There is not enough research on mother
absence to reach conclusions at this point in time as the frequency of mother absence is
so low that obtaining generalizable samples is virtually impossible.
18. Wallerstein, Second Chances, see Endnote #2.
19. Buchanan, C. & Maccoby, E., "Variation in Adjustment to
Divorce: The role of feeling caught between Parents" April 1991, Paper presented at
the Biennial Meeting for the Society for Research in Child Development, Seattle
Washington, April 18-20, 1991.
20. Perreault v. Cook, 114 N.H. 440 (1974); Howard v. Howard, 124 N.H.
21. There is substantial research on adequate or
"good-enough" parenting: Hodges, see Endnote #3; Shutz, B.M., Dixon, E.B.,
Lindenbergen, J.C., Ruther, N.J., Solomon's Sword (1989)
22. Clawar & Rivlin, Page 142.
23. Webb v. Knudson, 133 NH 665, 673 (1990). "Children are not
chargeable with the misconduct of their parents and should not be uprooted from their home
in order to discipline a recalcitrant parent." See also, Houde v. Beckmeyer, 116 NH
24. Code of Professional Conduct Rule 3.3 A lawyer shall not knowingly
mislead the court or use illegal or false evidence.
25. Domestic Violence Training for District Court Judges, January,
1990, personal conversation.
26. This suggestion has been made by Judge Linda Dalianis of the New
Hampshire Superior Court. See, Bonser v. Courtney, 124 N.H. 796 (1984) Only a Judge, not a
Marital Master, could empanel an advisory jury.
Peggie Ward, Ph.D.
J. Campbell Harvey, J.D.
Slatoff & Ward Psychological
280 Main Street #310
Nashua, NH 03060
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Furlong, PA 18925
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