Partnered with a Survivor: David Mandel and Ruth Reymundo Mandel

Season 2 Episode 19: Using the concepts of collaborative co-parenting to hold perpetrators more accountable in family court

October 30, 2021 Season 2 Episode 19
Partnered with a Survivor: David Mandel and Ruth Reymundo Mandel
Season 2 Episode 19: Using the concepts of collaborative co-parenting to hold perpetrators more accountable in family court
Show Notes Transcript

Many professionals mistakenly believe that concerns related to domestic violence evaporate once a relationship is over.  Survivors know differently.  Their experiences help us understand the ways that domestic violence perpetrators’ patterns of behaviors extend beyond the relationship. 

 In this episode, Ruth and David explore the nature of post separation coercive control and related topics. Ruth and David discuss:  

·      How post separation coercive control distinguishes through a heavy focus on “remote control’ abuse, abuse from a distance, using proxies to maintain and extend control; targeting and use of children; efforts to control the survivors’ parenting, and the use and targeting of finances. 

·      How post separation coercive control often involves new avenues and targets for manipulation, often centered around family court and child protection systems.  

·      How the risk assessment frameworks used by many professionals fails to capture harm to children and the omnipresent influence of coercive control in the post separation period-regardless of whether there have been recent acts of violence or not.

·      How one of the main factors used by courts for assessing the fitness of a parent-their willingness and ability to co parent-can be used to increase accountability for perpetrators as parents: when post separation coercive controlling patterns of behaviors are taken into consideration and mapped as parenting choices & are considered an impediment to healthy & safe co parenting.

Toward the end of the episode, Ruth passionately describes how systems take survivors’ disclosures and “hurt us with them”, and how this can be more harmful than the abuse itself.  David asks professionals to reflect on the ways that survivors are vulnerable to post separation coercive control by virtue of our collective lack of awareness & appropriate responses to this form of abuse. 

 Listen to related episodes of Partnered with A Survivor

Season 2 Episode 14: How to perpetrator proof custody & access processes

Season 2 Episode 12: How coercive control harms child safety & wellbeing: An interview with researcher Dr. Emma Katz

Now available! Mapping the Perpetrator’s Pattern: A Practitioner’s Tool for Improving Assessment, Intervention, and Outcomes The web-based Perpetrator Pattern Mapping Tool is a virtual practice tool for improving assessment, intervention, and outcomes through a perpetrator pattern-based approach. The tool allows practitioners to apply the Model’s critical concepts and principles to their current case load in real

Speaker 1: [00:00:16] And we're back and we're back.  [00:00:17][1.2]

Speaker 2: [00:00:18] Here we go. Here we go again for another episode of Partner with Survivor. Yeah.  [00:00:22][3.7]

Speaker 3: [00:00:23] You're David Mendell  [00:00:23][0.5]

Speaker 1: [00:00:24] and you're safely together institute.  [00:00:26][1.2]

Speaker 2: [00:00:26] Have you ever started out by this, David? Either you're the e-learning, strategic relationship and communications manager. I guess you. I'm really good at that in us anyway. We've taken a few weeks hiatus from recording. We're actually on the road and we had planned many, many days to actually record a podcast and we did it.  [00:00:45][19.2]

Speaker 3: [00:00:46] And weather and travel chaos.  [00:00:48][1.8]

Speaker 1: [00:00:48] Yes. Usurped that plan. Yes.  [00:00:50][1.8]

Speaker 2: [00:00:51] And so we're back home. We're in the office. Tiberius, the dog is here.  [00:00:54][3.2]

Speaker 1: [00:00:54] It's a very rainy day and  [00:00:56][1.4]

Speaker 3: [00:00:56] the leaves in New England have gone through their peak. There was a lot of red. Now there's a lot of yellow and and red undertones, and it's foggy in the Farmington River is lots of full,  [00:01:12][15.3]

Speaker 2: [00:01:12] lots of lots of fuel and we are as we we are always when we're recording from home, we're on Texas land and then Texas people with, you know, stolen a traditional custodians of land. Here are the Texas people are tied to the larger Algonquin nation, and I was just reading something recently. I don't know if you remember this came across our internal messaging system about people talking about that acknowledgment of country not being tokenism. You know, it really needs to talk about need to take action, need to recognize the live cultures of, you know, I'm talking this way. That's that's well, you know, these are people of the past and these are, you know, the Algonquin people are live and and are present, and there are active tribes here in Connecticut. And and also just the harm that that's done  [00:02:03][50.5]

Speaker 1: [00:02:05] has been done right by thinking that that's in the past right, but also that the real present moment of reality not  [00:02:09][4.8]

Speaker 2: [00:02:10] working to repair that. And so part of our commitment is really that working to repair the heal, to challenge structural inequalities and far from perfect and never enough is always learning and always learning. You know, and I had, you know, just been doing some work with some First Nation organizations and practitioners who are wonderful in Australia recently and and learning so much. And I just I was listening and we talk about trying to deeply listen, which is it's a skill and a practice. I was listening and and they shared with me about how there was a man in their community. This is an Aboriginal community where they, you know, where he had been severely violent, you know, and that the women of that community surrounded him to protect him from the harm that was going to come at him from the wider society. And I really want to emphasize the and and also hold them accountable for the violence he committed. Right. And and I and I really I really felt and heard that, you know, that that both things were were were real and true and important for them. And I think a lot of times that kind of circling that man who's been violent to protect him from the colonization, you know, structural racism, the violence of the wider society is is dismissed as collusion, right? Either when it happens on a group level or on an individual level of of a partner. And I really I hearing that really deep in my commitment even to just say we need to hold both things. Well, I think at the same time, I  [00:03:51][101.3]

Speaker 3: [00:03:51] think there's so much anger and and energy in the reality that people who have been violent to us have often been given quite the benefit of the doubt about their behaviors. And and, you know, excuse of excuses have been made for their choices. And that's super offensive, obviously to survivors, and it doesn't create safety for survivors and their kids. And at the same time, this reductionistic practice, which is the domestic violence field and the child protection field, doesn't really work holistically with humans. It doesn't take into account that children want to have contact with their parents. It doesn't take into account that we want people to change and that we haven't even scratched the surface of doing holistic practice and behavior change and accountability on a mass cultural scale that would show us who's capable of change and who's not who's dangerous and who and who can change.  [00:05:00][69.0]

Speaker 1: [00:05:01] We're not doing it.  [00:05:02][0.9]

Speaker 2: [00:05:02] We're still far from that. And for me, the call to action as as a as a person who is connected to the dominant culture in many places and to and is perceived and seen as white and connected to that culture and a lot of ways. Is a really call to action, and I want to share this with with people who are in a similar position that is not to minimize and to, in fact listen to and support the goal of community healing and community led solutions, community and solutions and the legitimacy needs to be legitimized by white people of that need desire to protect the whole community and to heal and address structural racism colonization in the solutions that come with ending domestic violence. And so, you know, for me, it's a both end thing and really hearing that. And there was a follow on conversation that was, you know, was really poignant for me. And the person was saying, Well, you know, I'm not sure it worked in all the ways. And I said, Well, I don't dismiss it because mainstream solutions don't work. No, all the time, either, you know, so I think we really have to be really,  [00:06:04][62.6]

Speaker 1: [00:06:05] really a lot of more rigorous in a lot of money. And Main Street and I referenced  [00:06:09][3.5]

Speaker 2: [00:06:09] I referenced officer-involved domestic violence and the response of police and its limitations. And so I really, you know, I want to say this because I want I want to invite other white practitioners of the mainstream practitioners to really think about, how do you hold this? The need for for reparations. The need for justice around cultural inequalities and and ending domestic violence perpetrators behaviors like how do we hold all those things at once? Because that's that's where I want to be and I want to get other people to be be there with, with me or with us.  [00:06:44][34.6]

Speaker 1: [00:06:45] So, yeah, it's not even Typekit. I know it's it's going to be a long podcast.  [00:06:49][4.0]

Speaker 2: [00:06:49] So we just I I've been coached to try to start thinking about Minnesota, but I never heard of till the other day by our viral media people.  [00:06:57][7.9]

Speaker 1: [00:06:57] So we can get we can get, yeah,  [00:06:59][1.1]

Speaker 3: [00:06:59] 15, 20 half an hour a minute podcast  [00:07:02][2.9]

Speaker 1: [00:07:02] and they're saying, wait a second.  [00:07:03][0.7]

Speaker 2: [00:07:04] I've heard this five minute podcast just so  [00:07:06][2.2]

Speaker 1: [00:07:06] I don't know that that's possible,  [00:07:07][0.8]

Speaker 2: [00:07:08] but that's not today.  [00:07:09][0.6]

Speaker 1: [00:07:09] That's nuts. And that's not what it's going to be an hour long.  [00:07:11][2.0]

Speaker 2: [00:07:12] That wasn't the intent of today, either, right? Ted did. Today wasn't to do it. OK. We both  [00:07:17][5.1]

Speaker 1: [00:07:17] came. But let's introduce the topic, Milo, because because we're rambling big. So we have we have three  [00:07:22][5.2]

Speaker 2: [00:07:23] interlocking subjects today. One is post-separation coercive control. Right? The other is, is this idea of risk assessment, particularly in the context of post separation coercive control? Mm hmm. But it has implications for other places where people are doing risk assessments, and I'll just to preview this idea of what to do to think about risk versus harm. Mm hmm. And then the last thing is, is in some sense, the most forward thinking part of this in my mind, is the concept of collaborative co-parenting. So a lot of these things are fitting in the context of custody and access parenting time decisions. Family Court is is the dominant paradigm that what's best for the kids is this collaborative co-parenting. And how do you bend that concept? How do you employ that concept  [00:08:17][53.8]

Speaker 1: [00:08:18] when you have somebody who is a criminal? Well, I teach and collaborative co-parenting around the criminal, right, and that's what's happening.  [00:08:26][8.5]

Speaker 2: [00:08:27] I think that that what I wanted when I talk about is how do you actually use that to increase the ability of systems to articulate accountability for that person as a parent? Right. And use that as a measure of measuring actually failure of compliance with this document. Right. The court and the dominant child centered paradigm, you know, if we and I'll just kind of say this, then we can jump back to the beginning if we truly believe which I do that when when parents who are divorcing and separating can actually work together, keeping the kids interests at the center of it. Right. And the research is consistent with this, by the way, that those kids can do really well even in a divorcing environment. Right? In fact, it's not.  [00:09:09][42.7]

Speaker 1: [00:09:10] It's not that the divorce itself is just a divorce or stay together, that it's it's it's the animosity that's fighting between the two parents.  [00:09:17][7.2]

Speaker 2: [00:09:17] In fact, I remember seeing research years ago that said that kids who grow up in households where there's abuse and violence, when the couple stays together and there's abuse of minors when the couple separates that those outcomes look similar more summer than kids who got or parents who got divorced and they work together and and parents who work together when they stay together had those kids outcomes look similar. And so part of it is is this idea that it's not whether you're together or not, it's about the the the parent quality of the fire and the quality of co-parenting, right? So so I think that we can bend this powerful concept of quality cooperative co-parenting. I am sorry this is the joys of working with Tiberius as a as a as a as a as a co-host. And he just got up and said turned himself around a million times a million times before he sat down. But that ben this this concept of collaborative co-parenting to. Our ability to hold perpetrators accountable. Right? You're right. I'm using a lot of words today.  [00:10:19][61.5]

Speaker 1: [00:10:19] OK, so let's get back to it.  [00:10:21][1.7]

Speaker 2: [00:10:21] So I coerce post-separation coercive control,  [00:10:24][3.1]

Speaker 3: [00:10:25] which a lot of a lot of professionals don't recognize and don't even understand as a concept at this point. So, you know, we do have to frame that educating yourself as a professional around post to a separation coercive control. It's harms its risk factors, and it's danger to children needs to become a standard part of our domestic violence practice.  [00:10:50][25.0]

Speaker 2: [00:10:51] Right. And so it means that at the foundation drop the idea that when the couple separates,  [00:10:56][5.3]

Speaker 3: [00:10:57] that safety increases  [00:10:58][0.7]

Speaker 2: [00:10:59] that automatically automatic. Sometimes it does.  [00:11:01][2.2]

Speaker 1: [00:11:01] Sometimes it doesn't really want to be clear about that.  [00:11:03][1.7]

Speaker 3: [00:11:03] And defining defining safety thus far has only been a physical definition of safety. And we know that post-separation coercive control comes with high risks for fatality for children. That's right. Adult survivors, but also at the same time, people need to land in the reality that it is in and of itself, harmful. And it is illegal for somebody to remove the personal liberties of another person, continue to threaten and harass them, even if they're using legal means to do so, which is the Family Court or other court systems or the police or child protection. Right. And that our cultural shift has to become the professionals recognize post-separation coercive control and manipulation of systems. And they stand as a barrier between that perpetrator and the victim by engaging in practice behaviors which draw boundaries around that behavior. Right. And say this is unacceptable. We see what you're doing. That's the world I want.  [00:12:10][67.1]

Speaker 2: [00:12:10] That's what you want. And that's the world we're trying to create. That's what we're trying. We're trying to create. They were so, so making the connection back to the severe examples that you reference about death. Yeah. Murder of adult survivors and children. One of the most basic things I know I'm saying things that a lot of our listeners understand, but it's worth repeating when a lot of people mistake that the ending of the relationship equals child safety automatically or is an automatic improvement of the safety of the adult survivor. They're not thinking through a course of control once, because once you think about this issue of domestic violence, the issue of entrapment control, it's so easy to see that the leaving is such a threat to that person's right control. Right? And so one is you just need to start there in my mind. The second thing is, once you see that and you assume everything else staying equal. Don't assume that that person who was left or the person who was abusive doing the relationship, they automatically have become a different person in their thinking, in their hand and their behaviors. So so if you just sort of go at this and go say, OK. De de de wine couples together data and abuse. This person was choosing to use their partner and day to the partner leaves. These are the kids. And there's no reason to think that that abusive parent or part of this change has changed. In fact, you can easily see how they could be more agitated, ramped up, ramped up, scared, controlling, wanting to scare, losing their control and wanting to find other means to continue to control or punish.  [00:13:49][98.1]

Speaker 3: [00:13:49] And so one of the things that we have to talk about is is control, because when people here control, they don't think of, well, the person who's choosing to be violent thinks that they're disciplining their children. Right? And therefore, they have the right to reach past their the barrier. Now that the survivor has created and saying, I am my own autonomous person, I am parenting in a different way because the parenting that you've been engaging in is harming our children. Right, right. But that person choosing violence feels entitled to that, or they feel entitled to maintain that relationship with the survivor because of deeply held beliefs, other other beliefs. So let's just be clear, there's a lot of people that don't understand what control means.  [00:14:35][46.4]

Speaker 2: [00:14:36] And I think part of it is is when people focus on and listen to the the justifications, the rationale or the like. I parent this way I want my kids to do this. I want and and she's depriving me of my, my, my legitimate relationship with my kids that they're that the one is that they're that they're looking for yelling and screaming and threats. And and really, obviously so the stereotype that somebody who is abusive or controlling is always going to look out of control as one of the things at play, right? One two is there that a position ality about wanting my kids to share my tradition or culture isn't automatically wrong? Right? And so what people miss is that as well, then they also miss. I think this idea that I'm what I'm actually doing is is part of a pattern of of control. Mm-Hmm. And and they're missing the method that that is only really visible in some cases when you look at the entire pattern of things, right? And in that because that person who is saying, well, I've got these, you know, deeply held beliefs, they come across as so convincing in their commitment. They don't look violent. They look sincere in their commitment to their kids mental health well-being. And I think when you combine that anger at and one more bed, you know, and you're right, this can be a day of me kind of adding a panic button, which is that when you you combine that with low expectations, you and I were just talking about this today for men as parents, when when the man is that  [00:16:19][102.5]

Speaker 1: [00:16:19] looks like  [00:16:19][0.3]

Speaker 3: [00:16:20] a desire to be a good  [00:16:21][1.7]

Speaker 1: [00:16:22] parent or looks so.  [00:16:23][1.1]

Speaker 3: [00:16:23] So when when this person then engages in endless litigation in the courts, then judges say, Oh, look, he wants to be a good parent. He wants contact with his children so much. Instead of saying,  [00:16:37][14.0]

Speaker 1: [00:16:37] I love you, judges. It's great that  [00:16:40][2.3]

Speaker 2: [00:16:41] judges are court void  [00:16:42][0.8]

Speaker 1: [00:16:43] today, but  [00:16:43][0.5]

Speaker 3: [00:16:44] really it's just it's it's such a disconnect. If if, if you know somebody is engaging in financial abuse via the courts, confusing that as good parenting to me is I don't understand how people have gotten there and they're thinking,  [00:17:01][17.6]

Speaker 1: [00:17:03] Well, this is very difficult.  [00:17:03][0.7]

Speaker 2: [00:17:04] I think it's I mean, I think it's it's and we have a whole we have a bunch of white papers on this one is about perpetrators manipulate systems. This is one of the ways that the family courts are vulnerable to manipulation, right? We have to name both pieces because it means the person who's actually doing this actually has to choose to do those behaviors, right? And we'll talk about that related to the collaborative parenting. And just a few minutes. But then the other system, the professionals have to really be reflect or are that or choose to be vulnerable to this cultural expectation of low standards for men and say, wait a second, just because somebody shows up is relentless is really committed. Let me reflect on whether this is a deep, child centered focus, right?  [00:17:49][45.2]

Speaker 1: [00:17:49] Or if this is part tipsters,  [00:17:50][1.1]

Speaker 2: [00:17:51] part or part of exercise litigation or part of a pattern of of of coercive control.  [00:17:57][5.2]

Speaker 3: [00:17:57] Has this person manipulated other systems in order to maintain their power and control? That's me. And. And with a history of domestic abuse or domestic violence or coercive control, it is logical that if that person is continuing to engage in those behaviors via our systems, that means that they are trying to maintain their power and control they they are very much trying to me. They retain their power and control.  [00:18:22][25.2]

Speaker 2: [00:18:23] And I was thinking about this, which is, you know, post-separation coercive control can include. Physical violence can include sexual assault, they can include stalking, it can include everything that that might have been happening when the couples. And in fact, there are certain ways it can be scary because if we're not living together, the  [00:18:41][18.1]

Speaker 3: [00:18:41] separation coercive control can include harming the children to punish the survivor.  [00:18:45][4.2]

Speaker 2: [00:18:46] Well, this is right, and this is why I want to get mentally,  [00:18:48][2.0]

Speaker 3: [00:18:48] emotionally, physically harming the children to punish, right?  [00:18:51][2.9]

Speaker 2: [00:18:52] So I want to get to about some of the things that could have been happening when the couples together. Yeah, but but I think often what gets pushed to the forefront in the behavior patterns of perpetrators post-separation is the targeting in the use of kids, right? The targeting, the use of money and property, the targeting and the use of proxies and other people to harass and to harass and control. But and the manipulation of systems like child protection and and and and criminal far right family court and the leveraging of prior involvement with those systems. So now I'm going to take the fact the family that child protection came and investigated my violence, but open up the case in your  [00:19:36][43.4]

Speaker 1: [00:19:36] name and the mom's name.  [00:19:37][1.0]

Speaker 2: [00:19:37] That's right. And I'm going to now take because  [00:19:38][1.3]

Speaker 1: [00:19:39] most child protection opens up the case and the mother's name, right? Even the the father is the one who's causing the. That's right. That's right. Gender double standard.  [00:19:47][8.3]

Speaker 2: [00:19:47] And it looks like it's like a little price tag, hashtagged and double standards. And then the last thing I want to add is also carries. It's a place where what we call tier two systems issues around mental health addiction, you know, so those service providers and those issues take up can really get supercharged in the family court environment as tools of manipulation threats. And and and, you know, things that get brought to the Family Court arena, sometimes with zero substance behind them. I was looking at some data from us to take our sorry recently, and I think they said, and I really don't want to kind of point to too much. But I think like one quarter of this, this particularly contested domestic abuse, family court matters where were had. Fictional, yes, allegations of mental health. There was no clinical back. There's no clinical basis  [00:20:48][60.3]

Speaker 1: [00:20:48] or it was just it was it was a typical she's crazy, right? Well, again, I  [00:20:52][4.2]

Speaker 2: [00:20:52] can't, you know, I can't, I can't. We can't disconnect this stuff from cultural stereotypes about women being crazy when being abused. Women lying about this again. Why? Why and why? This is why. Again, we have to really for professionals, we need to be really rigorous about how we're letting cultural biases and stereotypes and attitudes that are unfair have no basis. Influence and make us more vulnerable to perpetrators manipulation. I mean, I want to know that right? I don't want to be manipulated by a perpetrator. Yeah. And so I have to look and reflect and say, wait a second. Am I vulnerable to being, you know, to when somebody says she's crazy, she's emotional. Yeah.  [00:21:38][45.4]

Speaker 1: [00:21:39] You know, maybe I there. I want to get to a world  [00:21:42][3.3]

Speaker 3: [00:21:43] where, where, where somebody says that and everybody around them, including their friends and family and professionals say, we, we were told that you were going to say that. Well, so let's talk about some concerns we have about your patterns of behaviors of coercive control, domestic violence.  [00:22:01][17.9]

Speaker 1: [00:22:01] That's right.  [00:22:01][0.2]

Speaker 3: [00:22:02] But we were told you were going to say she was crazy.  [00:22:04][1.9]

Speaker 1: [00:22:04] And we we've  [00:22:05][1.0]

Speaker 2: [00:22:06] seen actually we've seen, you know, we get back stories of success where where once I'm talking about one particular case where we are post-separation, there was a number of years. The initial impression of the practitioner was that that while there had been violence when there were together, that there was no longer an issue. And but because they used our mapping tool, they were able to identify the patterns of post-separation coercive control and actually advocate successfully for changes in the way the system responded. That made that mother and particularly those kids safer. But she said the practitioner said, well, without the mapping tool, without your way of of approaching this, we wouldn't have named that. I wouldn't have named that and we wouldn't have and I wouldn't have advocate. And she was amazing. She championed that that kind of perspective against other professionals lack of understanding. And and so I think you know that we know that this can make a difference. And so your vision is not. Necessarily wrong or impossible. It's just we need more of it, we need a lot of it. So I wanted to kind of take that backdrop of the post-separation course of control to talk about risk versus harm, right? I I remember. Sitting in a bunch of meetings years ago, over a period of time where there were these discussions around risk assessments or risk assessment, it's been a big part of the domestic violence feel. People talk about risk assessments and systems like risk assessments to try to quantify. In a way that they can understand there may not be in alignment, by the way,  [00:23:50][104.6]

Speaker 1: [00:23:51] with a survivor, I understand. Well, I mean,  [00:23:52][1.6]

Speaker 3: [00:23:52] is it in a combination of factors having worked in the medical field? It's usually a combination of, yes, we want to be able to predict with some form of accuracy our risk, but also we want to protect ourselves from  [00:24:05][12.3]

Speaker 1: [00:24:05] being accused of being a threat to practice.  [00:24:08][2.9]

Speaker 2: [00:24:08] We did this approved risk assessment. I think you're right. And it's also a way to triage and manage resources because it systems. I mean, and these are all understandable kind of things.  [00:24:16][8.0]

Speaker 3: [00:24:17] This system has to do that. But at the same time, it's not doing it in a way that's working for survivors and kids  [00:24:22][4.8]

Speaker 1: [00:24:22] where there are gaps and it's not  [00:24:24][1.8]

Speaker 3: [00:24:24] even working for four professionals. The drift in the domestic violence and child protection field is huge because of professional dissatisfaction, because of how the systems themselves are responding to survivors, which is not why most workers got into the into the industry. They got into the industry to help kids right and help survivors. And when they see that that's not happening and that the very practices that are imposed upon them and mandated upon them are actually harming and limiting their ability to help those people, then why would they want to continue to work in this industry at a low rate of pay?  [00:25:02][37.1]

Speaker 1: [00:25:02] It's very thankless jobs.  [00:25:03][1.3]

Speaker 3: [00:25:05] I do. I see. Look, I'm acknowledging professionals.  [00:25:06][1.8]

Speaker 1: [00:25:08] I totally am acknowledging you do.  [00:25:09][1.5]

Speaker 2: [00:25:10] You do acknowledge professional sometimes. I don't  [00:25:12][2.2]

Speaker 1: [00:25:12] want them to feel beat  [00:25:13][0.7]

Speaker 2: [00:25:13] upon you, actually. You know, I don't think it always comes through on this project, but I know you and I know that you deeply care about professional and their well-being. And yes, and I think you're talking about this attrition that happens when people feel like that their practice is out of alignment with their values. And yeah, and all those things. And so, so so when we talk about risk factors, you know, people will talk about things like, has there been? And we don't I don't want to get into dynamic versus static risk factors because that's right. That's a that's a that's a bigger conversation. But but you know, when you think about static risk factors, this is where people are often talking about, you know, has this as the abuser strangled this person, did they use a weapon? You know where they are. They are they, you know, have they been violent with them during pregnancy? Have they sexually assaulted all of these things? You know, our risk markers for the future potential of severe, potentially lethal. But what is  [00:26:06][52.7]

Speaker 1: [00:26:06] against the odds of something  [00:26:07][1.0]

Speaker 3: [00:26:07] done with that right? What's functionally and practically being done?  [00:26:11][3.5]

Speaker 1: [00:26:11] Well, I think in the context of children, nothing OK.  [00:26:14][3.3]

Speaker 2: [00:26:15] Well, you know, again, this is where zero. So we don't lose everybody who's involved the risk assessment framework that risk assessment frameworks serve a purpose and they can be useful in terms of identifying scenarios where somebody generally may be at greater risk of lethality. Right. Targeting resources. I mean, I think there's a lot of teams out there to do a lot of really good work around this. And you're pointing to this idea that risk assessment frameworks set the catalog or kind of score or look at behaviors of the perpetrator or scenarios like leaving or increasing depression or substance abuse of the perpetrator. That's dynamics. I said I was I did you know that those are really valuable, but they are not the same thing as describing the harm that that perpetrator's behavior has done to the children in their functioning right  [00:27:10][55.4]

Speaker 1: [00:27:11] to this parenting choice.  [00:27:11][0.8]

Speaker 2: [00:27:12] It doesn't connect it up to a parenting choice framework, usually at all, and doesn't. And it doesn't. It doesn't, really. So it doesn't help you articulate how this person's harmed the kids, harm their functioning, harm the functioning of the person as a parent, harm the functioning of the family. It just it's usually not at all on the radar of people who are doing risk assessment frameworks. In this way, that's very traditional. And and so what means is when you get to the Child Protection Arena or the Family Court Arena, where child safety is supposed to be front and center right. The Risk Assessment Assessment Framework doesn't give people the language. Yeah. And the assessment framework that lets them say this is how the person who is, of course of the control has harmed the kids. Therefore, this is what we think they're likely to do in the future. Yeah. In the post-separation  [00:28:00][47.5]

Speaker 1: [00:28:01] for  [00:28:01][0.0]

Speaker 3: [00:28:01] this, for behavior change is recommended that actually changes behaviors and assesses behavioral change and just attendance. Therefore, X, Y and Z intervention is necessary. You know, the parole officer, whatever, whatever, however, mechanism you can pull on to create that accountability. But currently, that's not happening. And and I get what you're saying where the risk risk assessments have a functionality. But in the most common scenario of post-separation coercive control, risk assessments can actually inhibit inhibit survivors because of the lack of understanding of the danger of post-separation control in the professional community and in the judicial community can actually endanger survivors. Is because it labels domestic abuse as historic.  [00:28:50][48.3]

Speaker 1: [00:28:50] Right, right, right.  [00:28:52][1.4]

Speaker 3: [00:28:52] It's got a timeline around it. So. Oh well, he strangled. He attempted to strangle you three years ago, right? But he he hasn't done that most recently. So obviously he's not a danger to you.  [00:29:03][11.3]

Speaker 1: [00:29:04] Yeah.  [00:29:04][0.0]

Speaker 2: [00:29:04] Well, this way, this is the way I started thinking about it. It looks back that part of it looks it back to behavior. Like I said, I want to do justice to my colleagues. Yeah, where they're with, they're often doing dynamic and static sort of looking at. They are looking at the potential of escalating risk. In some cases, I don't think that really happens in a lot of family court environments, to be honest. Right. But I think it happens more in criminal court settings, right? But what I what I do want to add to what you were just saying is that that. I think of it now as it looks backwards to the pattern. It looks forward, but it doesn't look at right now. And and that's so important in the family environment because I'm showing up as a survivor knowing my partner's history, obviously having experienced it. I'm worried about what they might do in the future, including if I asked for everything I want and deserve right? And the court gives it to me. So what if I asked for full custody?  [00:30:05][61.0]

Speaker 1: [00:30:06] What if I ask for full alimony, alimony or half of half of the assets?  [00:30:10][4.6]

Speaker 3: [00:30:11] Which is what legally I you know,  [00:30:13][1.8]

Speaker 2: [00:30:13] so what risk factor frameworks don't really allow professionals to think about? Is that person sitting in front of you who, like you said, may not have been physically assaulted in the last six months or a year or two years, but now is taking this very big step to leave and the relationship is worried about what he's going to do with the kid's worried about what he's going to do to her, worried about the financial stuff, worried about all these things, and so walks into your office as a family court professional and says, I don't want  [00:30:39][25.7]

Speaker 1: [00:30:39] alimony, right? Oh, so can I.  [00:30:41][1.9]

Speaker 3: [00:30:42] Women leave behind assets because they don't want to have  [00:30:44][2.0]

Speaker 1: [00:30:44] to fight with them.  [00:30:45][0.5]

Speaker 2: [00:30:45] They don't want and they don't want him to feel justified in being involved in her life because he'll use the money as his emotional justification. So, so we're dealing with we're not dealing with risk factors. Just I mean, I want us to be forward thinking and look for danger and escalation, but I want us to be able to talk about it and operationalize it in that moment where we can do things like, Well, can I want to understand this, you know, as the person working with you, whether I'm your attorney, right? I'm a psychologist doing an evaluation, a court lawyer or anybody, I would like to understand how his prior violence is shaping your your way. You're approaching family court and the dangers you feel like you're trying navigate, including not just the dangers from him, but what your assessment is of our ability to help you. Because you may actually, if you actually trusted us better to understand, you might ask for more. You might actually try to navigate the system.  [00:31:40][55.4]

Speaker 1: [00:31:41] You know what? I don't know. I don't know about that, David. That's a bit of a  [00:31:44][3.8]

Speaker 3: [00:31:45] stretch in my mind, you know? There is no cultural understanding of how to navigate post-separation coercive control. And there's a lot of entitlement, we believe still culturally that people are entitled to become aggressive and abusive via systems and retributive because a partner has left them.  [00:32:14][29.1]

Speaker 1: [00:32:14] You know, that's still a cultural and people don't practice people.  [00:32:18][4.1]

Speaker 3: [00:32:19] They don't blame the person doing that. They say, Oh, well, they're upset that you laugh.  [00:32:23][3.9]

Speaker 1: [00:32:23] If you if you leave me, I'm not going give you a penny for not going to  [00:32:26][2.3]

Speaker 3: [00:32:26] give you a pen. And people accept that as being OK. Right. And the courts accept that as being OK. Right. And so I think that it's a bit of a stretch to say that if survivors trusted the system more, I don't think survivors should.  [00:32:40][13.8]

Speaker 1: [00:32:40] No, no, no. I'm actually not giving them. I'm not giving. They should be highly suspicious of the system, and  [00:32:46][6.0]

Speaker 3: [00:32:46] they should have concrete strategies to engage professionals, to force them to do the right thing. That's what I want. I want educated survivors who push professionals into better practice because that's what happened in the medical right?  [00:32:59][13.3]

Speaker 2: [00:33:00] Ask your doctor, ask your doctor, ask your doctor. And it's it's it's a campaign we're talking about. You know, we're referencing the horrible ads in the U.S.,  [00:33:09][8.5]

Speaker 1: [00:33:10] you know,  [00:33:10][0.3]

Speaker 2: [00:33:11] where they hate the market to to to to individuals about sort the medical interventions. And then they go and ask your doctor and they and  [00:33:19][8.3]

Speaker 1: [00:33:19] they get worse 20 minute disclaimer about death in  [00:33:22][2.4]

Speaker 2: [00:33:23] the conversation. But where we really want educated survivors and I I agree with you, we're not there yet. But I wanted to name that when when survivors come into Family Court, for instance, they're not only safety plan, you're assessing the perpetrators response, but the  [00:33:36][13.0]

Speaker 1: [00:33:37] the profession itself. That's right, I wonder to know themselves.  [00:33:39][1.9]

Speaker 3: [00:33:39] And there are definitely professionals that I never engage, right? Because I didn't believe that they were capable, right? And that I would be blamed that it would trigger a series of interventions and focus on me and my children, right? Rather than focusing on the  [00:33:53][14.0]

Speaker 1: [00:33:53] person who is choosing to do  [00:33:55][1.8]

Speaker 2: [00:33:55] with the onus. I think we put too much onus on and then blame on survivors to trust systems that don't understand the realities, particularly if they're black or brown or indigenous, you know, or, you know, transgendered or any group that experiencing, you know, sort of,  [00:34:12][17.0]

Speaker 1: [00:34:13] well, just think about how all marginalization.  [00:34:15][1.9]

Speaker 3: [00:34:15] How often does a woman going to refuge, which is what everybody says to do? And in fact, punishes Survivor if they don't do that. How often does go into refuge trigger a child protection and investigation, right? And how does that focus? Does that focus around the person who is being violent? Or does that focus on the person who left to try to save their lives and save their children's lives?  [00:34:38][22.8]

Speaker 2: [00:34:39] So when you were talking before I was thinking about this, about you talk about the culture, entitlement and and and it's going to be a nice segue to this. This collaborative parenting thing was that I hear a lot that parents are entitled to a meaningful relationship with their kids. You know, that's one of the jobs of family courts is often to to foster meaningful  [00:34:59][20.6]

Speaker 1: [00:35:00] relationships, and  [00:35:00][0.6]

Speaker 3: [00:35:01] thus far meaningful relationship has only meant contact. Right. It hasn't assessed the quality of the parenting. Based off of domestic violence and coercive control.  [00:35:11][10.1]

Speaker 1: [00:35:11] So that's what it's meant.  [00:35:13][1.3]

Speaker 2: [00:35:13] So so let's let's kind of move to and I think we're moving along pretty well. I know rapid clip. I think it's the caffeine I had this morning. OK. Yeah. Just in case anybody's wondering that that. So I got. Thinking about collaborative co-parenting and the concept, and it's it's a dominant framework in family courts and a lot of countries. Right.  [00:35:41][27.7]

Speaker 1: [00:35:41] And and I wanted a lot of organizations that,  [00:35:44][2.6]

Speaker 2: [00:35:44] oh my god, I just and I'm going  [00:35:46][1.7]

Speaker 1: [00:35:46] to read into collaborative. That's right. And they do the training workshop parents and mandated  [00:35:51][5.1]

Speaker 3: [00:35:52] workshops, right? Doesn't the court mandate  [00:35:53][1.3]

Speaker 1: [00:35:54] in conflict and  [00:35:55][0.8]

Speaker 2: [00:35:55] in some places, absolutely, because they see it as in the best interest of the kids? Right. And and I really want to be clear again, you know, we're we're I'm always walking a fine line. We want to we want people to think critically want people to reflect, but we also want to throw out. I'm sorry to use the baby with the bathwater kind of thing, which is just that. I think collaborative co-parenting is is a good overall. It's a good framework. The question is, how does it apply to situations of domestic violence? Right? But more importantly, for me right now is how is it used by systems as a lens to look at the parenting behavior and the attitude of the person with a history, of course, control to the court proceedings to their the other parent, to their kids?  [00:36:43][48.1]

Speaker 3: [00:36:44] Not quite sure how the court landed in thinking that there would be good collaborative co-parenting if you had one parent who is constantly threatening to take custody of the children constantly threatening and family court constantly filing motions, constantly draining the assets of the other co-parent. I'm not quite sure how they landed in believing that those behaviors were collaborative co-parenting and wouldn't harm collaborative co-parenting. Well, fundamentally, you are not a safe person. If the response of your co-parent to every conflict is that they engage the courts in order to harass you into complying with what they want.  [00:37:23][39.0]

Speaker 2: [00:37:24] So I think I may. I think there's lots of things that that go into that and I don't know all the answers to it by far, but I think about this idea that some of these conversations are very siloed. Although you look at the collaborative co-parenting literature or the the conversations, and I don't see anything, almost any and then doing random searches and totally unscientific random searches of the thousands of collaborative co-parenting websites. And they very few of them mentioned domestic violence. And if they do mention them, it's using the context of this doesn't fit with that, which is which is one answer. You know what you mean?  [00:38:05][40.9]

Speaker 3: [00:38:05] Domestic abuse and domestic  [00:38:07][1.3]

Speaker 1: [00:38:07] violence don't feel if you're a  [00:38:08][1.1]

Speaker 2: [00:38:08] married and they're often directed to the victim. And if you're a victim of a domestic violence, you know that you should be looking for alternative methods. You know, there's you know, whether it's go to supervised visitation, have no contact, right? I mean, there's lots of things that are really about managing safety contact again, and that can be very useful. But I don't see how I haven't seen a lot around this. And if I'm missing, some people should write in. We're always trying to get people to write and then don't go on and engage in a dialog with us. But that but that I often find like I've found with like, so on the child protection side, you'll have these parenting programs of these family preservation programs or you'll have infinite maternal health and part of the way they relate to the issue of domestic violence, saying we don't accept those cases into our programs. And so it becomes an issue.  [00:38:59][50.5]

Speaker 1: [00:38:59] There's no point  [00:38:59][0.4]

Speaker 3: [00:39:00] in that from the lens of physical violence. They're not doing that from the lens of coercive control. They have no framework around that. And you know, it's a blind, it's a blind spot and they're in their in their practice.  [00:39:12][11.6]

Speaker 2: [00:39:12] Well, I think there's often of the people who kind of and the funders and the policy people who look at those things, there's a naivety, to be honest. And I can't tell kind of where it falls on the spectrum, but I think there's there's sort of this idea that those programs will never have that issue in them present. And so actually, I heard and it's a little bit digression. You know, I was working with.  [00:39:35][22.5]

Speaker 1: [00:39:35] But are they screening well? Well, actively.  [00:39:37][2.3]

Speaker 2: [00:39:38] Well, they're screening. Well, I'll tell you a story. And this has stirred up more than once.  [00:39:42][4.2]

Speaker 3: [00:39:43] Or are they just stating it and accepting the goodwill of people?  [00:39:47][3.7]

Speaker 2: [00:39:47] Well, what I heard back from a practitioner was and this was in a nurse practitioner, infant and maternal health program, and they were looking to support high risk families and vulnerable kids. She said, I don't look for it even though I'm supposed to, because if I find out I'm supposed to kick this family out of the program and I don't think it's in the interest of the mom and the kids, and for me to do that. And so what she does, and I've seen that in child protection agencies where they set up what are supposed to be parallel processes or screening out of domestic violence for programs are situations they shouldn't be in. You get people who ignore the. Screening, like you're saying, right? Or use these very narrow definitions, domestic rounds like an incident, physical violence, like you're saying and and then they end up with a film with intense coercive control and violence, but they don't have the skills, the supervision, the support to look at it. So so what I did was I pulled. What I pulled was a random, totally unscientific, collaborative co-parenting web site. And I want to talk about the six things that they highlight co-parenting after divorce. Six Guiding principles for success. You see  [00:41:02][75.2]

Speaker 3: [00:41:02] these everywhere.  [00:41:03][0.3]

Speaker 1: [00:41:03] You're giving these pamphlets everywhere.  [00:41:05][2.2]

Speaker 2: [00:41:06] And so and in that end, and I want you to think about if this framework was actively applied by professionals in the family court environments, it could be judges. It could be evaluators around the behavior of the perpetrator. Right. And it was connected to a good assessment of that pattern of behavior and harm. And it was brought into that kind of family court process what it would be like. So how well do we think I'm going to? I'm going to go through that. I'm going to ask you this like a quiz?  [00:41:41][34.9]

Speaker 1: [00:41:41] OK, how old  [00:41:43][1.7]

Speaker 2: [00:41:43] do you think domestic violence perpetrators do in accepting what is? Oh, my god, is that is that that's the phrase accept what is  [00:41:51][7.8]

Speaker 1: [00:41:52] what is that? Not very well.  [00:41:53][1.7]

Speaker 2: [00:41:54] OK, right? And and and would we be able to see  [00:41:56][2.3]

Speaker 1: [00:41:57] they know what they want, they know what they want to know when they're uncomfortable, they know how to, and they don't have demand point fingers and blame. They know how to  [00:42:04][7.0]

Speaker 3: [00:42:04] throw a pitch, a pitch, a very adult fit,  [00:42:06][2.0]

Speaker 1: [00:42:07] right?  [00:42:07][0.0]

Speaker 2: [00:42:08] But if we went looking for the absence of that or the opposite of that, which is trying to force things, control things, you, you would see  [00:42:14][6.8]

Speaker 1: [00:42:15] those behavior moving liberties of people and so on and so forth. Yes.  [00:42:17][2.8]

Speaker 2: [00:42:18] So just again, I want people to be thinking in their mind about of, but this was actively put in there, put the children first every day. Wow. How well is that average domestic violence purpose? You're doing it, putting their children first every day.  [00:42:30][12.4]

Speaker 3: [00:42:30] Well, they couldn't see them abusing their partner was harming their children.  [00:42:34][3.7]

Speaker 2: [00:42:35] So what? You know, it's you know what, what you're actually bringing in. It's actually fun. I'm going to jump around. Is it? It says these are two of the things I'm going to cover for and I'm ready. Say, sorry.  [00:42:46][11.1]

Speaker 1: [00:42:47] OK.  [00:42:47][0.0]

Speaker 2: [00:42:48] And learn from your mistakes. So we put together. Put your kids first, right? Say you're sorry. Learn to mistakes. How would it in court? And really kind of basic ways would a domestic violence perpetrator show up? And what I would translate it to is, has he admitted to what he did? Yeah. Has he acknowledged the harm it's caused his partners kids? Yeah. Has he apologized? And is he is there a plan for reparation?  [00:43:11][23.4]

Speaker 3: [00:43:12] OK, so here's here's. As it stands right now. As a collaborative co-parenting lens with the first one was accept what is yeah, they're looking at the mom and saying, accept that you married an abusive human accepted who did it, you married him, you broke, created with him. You need to accept that, sister. OK, what's  [00:43:32][19.6]

Speaker 1: [00:43:32] the second one?  [00:43:32][0.3]

Speaker 2: [00:43:33] The second one was, I'm  [00:43:34][1.6]

Speaker 1: [00:43:34] doing the survivor.  [00:43:35][0.2]

Speaker 2: [00:43:35] You did put children first every day,  [00:43:37][1.7]

Speaker 3: [00:43:37] don't have conflict or don't be perceived to be standing in opposition to your co-parenting and their parenting. Or else we're going to blame you.  [00:43:46][8.7]

Speaker 2: [00:43:46] So this is where the parental alienation turns parental alienation,  [00:43:48][2.0]

Speaker 1: [00:43:49] but it's tells  [00:43:49][0.3]

Speaker 2: [00:43:49] how right so you're speaking  [00:43:51][1.3]

Speaker 1: [00:43:51] to keep going. OK, having fun with this?  [00:43:53][1.8]

Speaker 2: [00:43:53] Say sorry and learn from your mistakes.  [00:43:55][1.9]

Speaker 3: [00:43:55] You're sorry for resisting your abusers abuse and for disclosing it, because that's uncomfortable to us. We don't know how to deal with it and apologize.  [00:44:08][12.6]

Speaker 1: [00:44:10] Next, what's the next one?  [00:44:11][0.8]

Speaker 2: [00:44:11] I'm sorry. All of a sudden I'm like, I'm thinking about groups of people the United States are saying, Don't bring up our history of racism because of our feelings. Our feelings hurt their feelings.  [00:44:19][8.1]

Speaker 1: [00:44:20] It's the it's don't tell us about our historical genocide.  [00:44:22][2.2]

Speaker 2: [00:44:23] There is a lot of lot of parallels here.  [00:44:25][2.2]

Speaker 1: [00:44:25] You're a horrible person, right? OK, I'm happy to  [00:44:28][2.9]

Speaker 2: [00:44:29] learn from your mistakes.  [00:44:30][0.7]

Speaker 1: [00:44:31] Just be quiet. OK. Just be quiet and comply  [00:44:35][4.6]

Speaker 2: [00:44:38] the next one. And let's not lose the focus on the perpetrator. I know you do. This is a compliment. Your ex. I love this one. This is so this is so Mike. When you said to me one about that's not on this particular site. If you don't look your ex in the eye,  [00:44:55][17.2]

Speaker 1: [00:44:56] then they're going to tell you that  [00:44:57][1.8]

Speaker 2: [00:44:58] you are not be a  [00:44:59][1.2]

Speaker 1: [00:44:59] collaborative parent  [00:45:00][0.6]

Speaker 3: [00:45:00] meeting. If I don't look my perpetrator in the eye, I'm impeding co-parenting, right?  [00:45:06][5.7]

Speaker 1: [00:45:06] What? Who made these  [00:45:08][1.2]

Speaker 2: [00:45:08] things? That's right. And so and so I want, you know, so I want you to think about because it what it says here is underneath that when your children stare or share a story with you about you.  [00:45:18][10.2]

Speaker 1: [00:45:18] And not only that, sorry, guys, because culturally.  [00:45:20][2.1]

Speaker 3: [00:45:21] Yes, not all cultures look people in the night. Because it's a it's a feeling of offense and violence and intrusion. So professionals need to right.  [00:45:32][10.2]

Speaker 2: [00:45:32] So underneath the compliment your ex again, I want to. I want to operationalize this a little bit in terms of holding perpetrating parents accountable when your children stare a story with you about your ex. Challenge yourself to compliment your ex parenting. So I want you to think about that meeting.  [00:45:47][15.0]

Speaker 3: [00:45:48] Oops, sorry. Oh, that means that if a child comes back from an abusers house and they tell you that they weren't fed the whole time, or that all of their clothing and their belongings were taken away because they didn't go to church with the perpetrator, I'm supposed to complement mine.  [00:46:06][17.8]

Speaker 2: [00:46:07] And I hope it's not that bad. I mean, while I think they would say in that case, I think you're right, I think it is is that he bought, took them out to ice cream and did all the things that you wouldn't do with them to make you look bad. Then you're supposed to compliment them so that right? I hope they're not as bad, but I want I want to keep the focus on this. If we held perpetrators to this standard. You know what we see a lot of purpose is undermining is my behavior, criticizing pointing fingers, right? And so I think so many perpetrators would just fail this woman, this very basic test, which it says there are so many opportunities to show your kid that you see good in their other parent, right? So if we just said to a perpetrator, go to the Family Court, describe all the ways in the last month that you have told your kids the other person, your act is a good parent and described it to me that if we start using those things as as as as a measure and these things together, I don't want to say one thing by itself that that we would be shifting one the focus around the victim's decision making and how they're presenting and putting the onus on the perpetrator of the violence and on the court to focus on the purpose.  [00:47:18][71.7]

Speaker 1: [00:47:19] I just think that  [00:47:19][0.6]

Speaker 3: [00:47:19] it's ridiculous that the court is mandating that we that we have to compliment our ex. Listen, if I'm co-parenting with somebody who has a history of abusing me and a history of abusing children, you know the best I can say to them when they come home is, I'm really glad that you had a good experience with  [00:47:36][16.8]

Speaker 1: [00:47:36] your with your other parents, right?  [00:47:38][1.3]

Speaker 3: [00:47:39] You know that I'm not going to sit there and praise their parenting, especially when I know that the children are are navigating somebody who still, do you understand what I'm saying? Like, it's unreasonable  [00:47:50][11.6]

Speaker 1: [00:47:52] and an unreasonable.  [00:47:52][0.3]

Speaker 2: [00:47:53] But I so this is this back and forth between you and I. It's really interesting because that experience for you or other survivors, this is  [00:48:01][7.9]

Speaker 3: [00:48:02] I'm really just speaking to the experiences of survivors that I know. I'm directly speaking to my experience. Just to be clear. Yeah, that that, you know, sometimes the best you can do when you know that somebody's still. Not, you know, head or they're still coercive, controlling and and they are prioritizing their needs above child needs or child development or their anxiety or controlling their environments and also trying to control the children because they can't manage, then you the best you can do is say, I'm really happy you had good contact with your parent, right? And your other parent. I support that. I support good contacts with your other parent. I support safe contact. I support connected contact. But when that's not happening, why should we lie?  [00:48:51][49.4]

Speaker 2: [00:48:52] Right? And so so I think,  [00:48:53][1.4]

Speaker 3: [00:48:53] what should we make things up?  [00:48:54][1.0]

Speaker 2: [00:48:55] So I. Yours.  [00:48:55][0.7]

Speaker 3: [00:48:56] Because that's harmful to children, right? That's harmful to children. People lying to your children and telling them that their experience of harm isn't real is damaging to children.  [00:49:10][13.7]

Speaker 2: [00:49:11] So what I want to do with that, with what you just said, because I think that that experience of survivors who are in that situation is so important to be listened to. And it's often so often disregarded and misunderstood and misinterpreted as parental resistance or parental alienation.  [00:49:33][22.5]

Speaker 3: [00:49:35] One of the worst things about being with the coercive control right is that they make reality, right? They tell you what reality is, and it's extremely violent and it's extremely gaslighting and you feel crazy, right? And once you extricate yourself from that situation, you will not lie to your children about their experience of other people because that is damaging and sets them up to be abused in the future.  [00:49:59][24.9]

Speaker 2: [00:50:01] So, so  [00:50:01][0.5]

Speaker 1: [00:50:03] super passionate about  [00:50:03][0.8]

Speaker 2: [00:50:04] who you are and for good reason, because I think what you're saying is that we need to put those behaviors in the context of the behavior of the course of controller and to see the protective nature, because I think we need to  [00:50:17][13.1]

Speaker 3: [00:50:17] be able to tell our children certain behaviors are damaging, unacceptable and that it's not good behavior, right? If we don't do that right, our children grow up and we adopt those behaviors and relationship and they believe that it's OK. And and, you know, really, if you think about abuse as a tactic of control rather than as a tactic of losing control and abuser who continues their behavior is just constantly trying to get control and what they want over the world. And they're really good at it. And everybody around them sort of scuttlebutt around them and gives them what they want because they don't want to deal with it. And this is true in just in general life. If you think about the trajectory of a be an abuser through real life abusing wait staff, abusing bank people because they'll get what they want, right?  [00:51:07][50.3]

Speaker 2: [00:51:08] Because everybody folds and you're you're talking about the fact that people don't have a great roadmap in my mind for holding people who do bad things accountable for owning it, owning the harm, claiming the harm, repairing it.  [00:51:30][22.7]

Speaker 1: [00:51:31] Mm-Hmm.  [00:51:31][0.0]

Speaker 2: [00:51:32] And that tied to that, they don't have a good sense of that. The person who received it has every right not to trust, to be angry, to speak to the truth of those behaviors and to not be in danger of being accused of being a troublemaker, of being difficult about being a resisting parent,  [00:51:50][18.5]

Speaker 1: [00:51:51] revenge or wanting revenge.  [00:51:52][1.0]

Speaker 2: [00:51:53] There's this very tight. And again, I can't separate out for gender gender standards and expectations of men and women in my head that that that what ends up become the dominant narrative in Family Court is play nice. And that means what we're saying to survivors is don't talk your truth.  [00:52:09][15.9]

Speaker 1: [00:52:10] And if you talk the truth, I don't like it. I don't like  [00:52:12][2.1]

Speaker 3: [00:52:13] saying talk your truth because it makes it sound very, very subjective. No, I don't. Maybe these are behaviors are incredibly concrete and they have  [00:52:20][7.8]

Speaker 2: [00:52:21] particular, OK, so don't speak the truth. Don't speak the truth. Maybe I may appreciate it.  [00:52:26][4.9]

Speaker 1: [00:52:26] Thank you. I appreciate it because that behavior  [00:52:27][1.3]

Speaker 3: [00:52:28] happened and that behavior had consequences and caused trauma.  [00:52:31][3.7]

Speaker 2: [00:52:32] Right? And you're speaking to this idea that within the course of control, what people throw around the term gaslighting that you know, that that manipulation of reality and perception, what's wrong and right? And I think that systems, I'm always the one who's, you know, saying this thing about to my colleagues, you know, to really think about where you're vulnerable to buying into the narrative that a survivor who is protecting their kids wants to help them navigate the emotional challenges of relating to the parent who is violent,  [00:53:01][28.7]

Speaker 3: [00:53:01] not just the emotional challenges of relating to another violent parent. It's a really deep desire to raise healthy, good children. Right? And frame reality for them and say this behavior has this result. If you. You want to be connected to people if you want to collaborate with other people and you want to be a good human, then you cannot engage in these behaviors. It will destroy your relationships, it will harm your families who will harm your relationship with yourself.  [00:53:34][33.0]

Speaker 1: [00:53:35] So you really feel tremendous shame and guilt.  [00:53:38][2.9]

Speaker 2: [00:53:39] So I want to I want to put that next to what you're saying because you're talking about us having space in our culture, in our professional assessment to really value the healing and parenting world and the truth, telling all that a survivor around the abuse and the violence and about what it means for kids at a very deep level for their relationship to the future.  [00:54:01][22.4]

Speaker 3: [00:54:02] I'm just like, I have to say, I'm feeling a tremendous amount of emotion, right? Yeah, because the most damage that's done to both adult and child survivors is to tell us that we cannot speak about what happened to us. And if we do, we're the party that is doing the right thing. We are unforgiving. We are the problem. And that cultural that experience is culturally supported in many different ways. By the way, the court systems, the family, courts and professionals respond to our disclosures and they take our disclosures and they hurt us with them. They hurt us again and again and again with our disclosure of harm. They use our disclosures to blame us to create accountability for us and our, you know, and we stayed. It was our choice. We didn't call the police. We didn't do this. And it's incredibly traumatic. It is more traumatic to experience that form of gaslighting from professionals and agencies and the culture around us. Then often it was the initial perpetration. And that that is a that's a that's a crisis that we experience daily as survivors, as survivors of child abuse, as survivors of coercive control and domestic violence. And we have to we have to change that. It is. It is so damaging and it causes us to go silent. It causes us to not engage your services. It is a primary impediment to efficiency and effectiveness of our services. So it is a very simple thing in my mind to say that we need to learn how to stop doing that and it will increase engagement, it will increase efficiency, it will increase people reaching out and into the systems and asking for help. But if our disclosures fundamentally are used to harm us, why would we step into that space with you? Why? Why would we want to be hurt over and again and again and again? You know, and I see survivors who stepped into the systems believing that the systems were on their side and they had integrity and they were going to help them, only to discover that there's tremendous confusion, poor practice and that the system is incredibly victim blaming. And it becomes it becomes terribly harmful.  [00:56:44][162.1]

Speaker 2: [00:56:47] I love so much what you just said, and, you know, I hope people who are listening can can hear and feel the emotion I can't sitting across from you. And I don't think I have anything to add to it.  [00:57:03][15.8]

Speaker 3: [00:57:03] It's creating a barrier. It's so simple, right? It's creating a barrier right  [00:57:09][6.3]

Speaker 2: [00:57:11] to the shared goal of  [00:57:12][1.1]

Speaker 1: [00:57:12] absolutely common goals and  [00:57:14][1.6]

Speaker 3: [00:57:14] values, keeping our kids safe and keeping survivors safe. Art is completely impeded by that. Yeah, yeah.  [00:57:20][6.7]

Speaker 2: [00:57:22] So I invite professionals who are listening to to to really pause and hear and deeply listen to what you're saying and to think that and be aware that part of the solution is what we say over and over again is this pivot to the perpetrator and start talking about, don't put the survivors. Feelings, choices under the microscope, put the put the perpetrators.  [00:57:51][29.2]

Speaker 3: [00:57:53] And it's a very active step in stepping forward and and making a disclosure and becomes a danger to us. And it is a danger to us right now. It is a huge danger to us. Then why would we step into your  [00:58:09][16.7]

Speaker 1: [00:58:10] space, right?  [00:58:10][0.5]

Speaker 2: [00:58:11] And I remember I remember when we talked to Ashley Donahue a few months ago about her as an Aboriginal women, other Aboriginal them saying, We don't disclose. We don't engage mainstream services. We don't do this because not only, you know, it's just so much danger to us in so many different ways in our kids. And so I think we need to see the logic of that justification. Yeah. So to wrap this up and this is I've enjoyed, decimated and covered, so much ground and so much when you share that to me, it just is.  [00:58:44][33.7]

Speaker 3: [00:58:45] It's such a deep wound. Yeah, it really hurts. I mean, it really it really keeps so many people in danger, right? And once you've experienced it over and over and over again in various ways and you've had that bio feedback loop where, OK, you put yourself in counseling while the counselor, you know, engages in similar behaviors and you say, Wait, wait a second, you really start to believe that you're the problem, not the person who is violent to you, but your disclosure feels like the problem.  [00:59:14][29.5]

Speaker 2: [00:59:15] Right? And my I was writing about this this morning. I want people to to to listen to this and understand and have empathy for survivors, experience of being afraid that disclosure is going to be used against them and the harm that happens to them when they are. And I understand that part of the solution is, again, this pivot to the perpetrator. Because it's again, it's not. We keep pathologizing a prominent problem enticing, is that a word?  [00:59:48][33.5]

Speaker 1: [00:59:48] I don't know how many times right now  [00:59:50][1.7]

Speaker 2: [00:59:51] survivors and the and there's a really just like, you know, even when we think we're helping them, we're spending all this time talking about them versus turning that lens onto that.  [00:59:59][8.4]

Speaker 3: [00:59:59] Well, I think I think that that's very deeply linked to our evidentiary procedures again, which came about at a time when women were property and that the loss of that, that relationship or the loss of that custody was viewed as loss of property. Family Court is supposed to divide property they're not very good at,  [01:00:19][19.3]

Speaker 2: [01:00:19] including kids is  [01:00:20][0.7]

Speaker 1: [01:00:20] property include kids, it's property,  [01:00:21][1.3]

Speaker 3: [01:00:23] you know, so. So I think that that's part of it. Yeah. You know, I really think that the other piece of that that's super important is that systems haven't had a efficient and effective strategy in behaviorally assessing both people's behaviors. In the case of false allegations, and they're so confused as to what is real and what is not because they're not doing the right assessment tactics, right? They're not diagnosing the problem correctly. Are you saying that?  [01:00:56][33.5]

Speaker 2: [01:00:57] All right. So not going there today because I could go to talking about how we map both people with cross allegations, mapping both people's patterns of behavior, of course, control. That's a whole other topic.  [01:01:07][10.2]

Speaker 1: [01:01:08] Well, that's the next topic where  [01:01:09][1.5]

Speaker 2: [01:01:09] we can talk about that. But to wrap this up, you know, my plea is is, is empathy is not enough. Understanding is not enough. Changing practice is what we need to do. And and to look the next time you look at a collaborative parenting website, are you thinking about the concept of collaborative parenting and this idea, it's in the best interest of the kids. Think about how well the perpetrator in front of you is doing on those standing. Start operationalizing it, you know, to wait. What? What exactly is this person doing to put the best interest of kids ahead of their own? How have they done historically with that? How will they complement and supported their kids relationship with the other parent, you know, and but operationalize it and think about gender double standards in here, because that's that's so critical, because if you don't, then it's easy to turn these things again against survivors and and think about, you know, what they're doing to acknowledge their mistakes. And so again, you've got somebody don't just think about risk going forward, think about the harm they've already done and have they owned it? And have they apologized and they've made behavioral changes? And what are they doing to become more trustworthy? Do not look at this as as the violence ended, when the danger ended, when the couple separated. Think about that post-separation coercive control. Yeah. And what that means for the kids. And please, you know, write us about this episode. We know the Family Court stuff on our Twitter feeds and and and and our our trainings. They get so much attention and so wondering, you know, if this is gets a lot of attention, please respond. Comment. And I hope you enjoyed this episode.  [01:02:48][98.3]

Speaker 1: [01:02:48] It's I think we were. It's raining quite a bit here. And you probably hear a in the background because we have a metal roof. So, um,  [01:02:56][7.6]

Speaker 3: [01:02:57] so you know, from very, very soggy autumnal Connecticut. Yes, this is partnered with the survivor and I'm restraints. Mandel from the Safe and Together Institute  [01:03:09][12.5]

Speaker 2: [01:03:10] and I am David Mandel from the Safety Institute. And if you want to follow us on our personal Twitter feeds, we never talked about this. Yeah, I think mine is that David Mandel?  [01:03:23][13.4]

Speaker 1: [01:03:24] You may know me. I think so.  [01:03:26][2.0]

Speaker 2: [01:03:27] I got to check that.  [01:03:27][0.6]

Speaker 1: [01:03:28] Yeah, mine is  [01:03:28][0.7]

Speaker 3: [01:03:29] at Survivor Strong three.  [01:03:30][1.1]

Speaker 2: [01:03:31] And our Our Safety Institute website is saved. The other intercom  [01:03:34][3.0]

Speaker 3: [01:03:35] academy that safe and together institute for our  [01:03:37][2.2]

Speaker 2: [01:03:37] training. There's a 15 percent discount  [01:03:39][1.9]

Speaker 3: [01:03:40] with the code partnered all lower case,  [01:03:42][2.4]

Speaker 2: [01:03:43] and we have events coming up. A European North American conference January 13th and 14th. We are. We'll be doing our webinar series in January and February 2022. And I think  [01:03:56][12.9]

Speaker 1: [01:03:57] we are  [01:03:57][0.7]

Speaker 2: [01:03:58] out.  [01:03:58][0.0]

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