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Child to adult abuse

Child to parent/carer violence is an abuse of power whereby the child or young person attempts to use coercive control or violence to dominate others in the family.

This is a form of abuse that is more common than people realise but shouldn’t be confused with childhood testing of boundaries, which is perfectly normal as children start to become more independent.

How we can help

Where younger children are beginning to display abusive or controlling behaviour, this can often be addressed through parenting techniques and other forms of behaviour modification, but if it has developed into a pattern of a pattern of abusive or violent behaviour, the parent/carer may feel too frightened and unsure of what to do and the family may benefit from more specific intervention.

Child / adolescent to parent abuse is often (although not always) contextualised within existing family problems and some young people displaying abusive behaviours towards their parent/carer are, or have been, victims or witness to domestic abuse or child abuse. Our specialist workers help families to navigate services to find the right support for them.

Respect

The Respect programme has been specially developed for families across North Yorkshire where there is child or adolescent to parent violence and abuse from children who are between 8 and 18 years. It is a voluntary programme for families who would like to work to gain positive change within the family.

As part of the programme, IDAS children and young people’s practitioners work with the parents and children in structured sessions to offer support, insight, and some simple targeted solutions to help improve the family relationships and dynamics. The sessions focus on parenting styles and anger management techniques that the whole family can employ.

The programme is typically provided over three months and during that time children and young people’s practitioners use a variety of tools and techniques to help identify the behaviours that are causing concerns and look at ways to create positive outcomes. Our team recognises that every member of the family is a part of the solution and that by working together they can develop a more harmonious home.

Some of the sessions will be with the whole family, some with the parent/carer and others with the child or young person. The programme reaches its full potential if both young person and parent/carer are willing to engage. Within the sessions the practitioner will also help with safety planning, developing a family agreement and will look at assertiveness techniques and how to deal with conflict and anger management.

“My initial contact with IDAS was in early February 2021 when I received a phone call which was followed up by email a short while later. I was provided with a booklet (useful reference) and arrangements were made for weekly zoom meetings with other parents experiencing similar issues. This was very useful and much of what was said resonated with me. I would like to say thank you for the support I have received and for the contact should it be needed in the future.”

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