Sunday, November 07, 2010

A Message from Dr. Richard Warshak on Parental Alienation

We've posted several times over recent years on the approaches of various Ontario courts to Dr. Richard A. Warshak's controversial "deprogramming" techniques for treatment of children who have experienced parental alienation.

By way of background, here's an excerpt from my February 9, 2009 post, More on Dr. Richard Warshak and "Deprogramming" Parental Alienation:

Family Workshop, Dr. Richard Warshak's counter-parental alientation programme, was at the centre of last month's controversial Ontario Superior Court decision on parental alienation in A.G.L. v. K.B.D. (our previous reports are here and here).

The Dallas-based clinical psychologist, continues to attract the attention of Ontario's media and courts.

The Globe and Mail reported yesterday on a February 6 decision of the Ontario Superior Court, overturning an arbitrator's order that would have sent a Toronto teen to the Warshak programme. See Judge blocks sending teen for deprogramming treatment:

I've previously written to Dr. Warshak to request his comments. I heard from him by email this morning, indicating he has an article upcoming in tomorrow's Huffington Post. Dr. Warshak's new blog, Building Family Bridges, similarly advises.

Also noteworthy, his website's Publications section lists his articles, all of which may be purchased online. For example:

Family Bridges: Using Insights From Social Science To Reconnect Parents and Alienated Children

This article is the first in a refereed journal on the program for severely alienated children that has captured world-wide attention. The article passed a rigorous peer review process and provides the first detailed account of Family Bridges: A Workshop for Troubled and Alienated Parent-Child Relationships. We received more than 100 requests throughout the world for advanced copies of this article before it was even published! This groundbreaking article became the centerpiece of an entire issue of a professional journal.

...The article reports on Dr. Warshak’s study of the outcomes of the first 12 families in which he was involved with Family Bridges. The sample was composed of 23 children, 8 of whom were 14 or older. The children had been alienated an average of 28 months. Seven of the rejected parents were mothers, five were fathers. At the workshop’s conclusion, 22 of 23 children, all of whom had failed experiences with counseling prior to enrollment, restored a positive relationship with the rejected parent. At follow-up, 18 of the 22 children maintained their gains; those who relapsed had premature contact with the alienating parent. 34 journal pages with 99 endnotes and citations to 79 social science and legal references.

We'll check out tomorrow's HuffPo article and report further.
- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

Update: November 8, 2010

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