Understanding and Managing Parental Alienation: A Guide to Assessment and Intervention, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Understanding and Managing Parental Alienation

A Guide to Assessment and Intervention, 1st Edition

By Janet Haines, Mandy Matthewson, Marcus Turnbull


376 pages

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Paperback: 9780367312947
pub: 2019-10-11
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Hardback: 9780367312909
pub: 2019-10-11
Available for pre-order

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In Understanding and Managing Parental Alienation: A Guide to Assessment and Intervention, Janet Haines, Mandy Matthewson and Marcus Turnbulloffer a comprehensive analysis of contemporary understanding of parental alienation. Grounded in recent scientific advances, this is the first book of its kind providing resources on how to identify parental alienation and a guide to evidence-based intervention.

Parental alienation is a process in which one parent manipulates their child to negatively perceive and reject the other parent. Recognising this phenomenon and knowing when to intervene is often the biggest challenge faced by practitioners and this book provides a guide to this process. Divided into six parts, it examines what parental alienation is and how it is caused, how it affects each family member as a mental health concern and form of violence, and how to assess, identify and intervene successfully from a legal and therapy standpoint. Taking on a gender-neutral approach, the book is filled with contemporary case examples from male and female perspectives, cutting-edge research, practitioner-client dialogues, and practitioners’ reflections to show the difficult realities of parental alienation.

Practical and accessible, this is an essential resource for mental health professionals working with families experiencing parental alienation, as well as postgraduate students of clinical psychology, counselling, family therapy, social work, and child and family psychology. This bookwill also be of immense interest to family lawyers and mediators due to its multidisciplinary approach.


"Matthewson, Haines and Turnbull have authored a deeply researched and compassionately written work on a pernicious form of family violence - Parental Alienation. Calling on their decades of experience in clinical psychology and family law, these experts give us a comprehensive look at how Parental Alienation begins, develops and resists attempts at intervention. Using the literature of family and clinical psychology, the authors provide a methodology for assessment and intervention. Drawing on their experience in forensic psychology and law, the authors provide immediately practical guidance to help legal professionals craft lasting remedies." - Demosthenes Lorandos, Ph.D, J.D, Licensed Psychologist and Attorney at Law, PsychLaw, USA

Table of Contents

Preface; Part One: The nature of parental alienation; Chapter One: What is parental alienation?; Chapter Two: The great syndrome debate; Chapter Three: Processes underlying parental alienation; Chapter Four: Parental alienation as a mental disorder; Chapter Five: Parental alienation as a form of family violence; Part Two: The alienated family; Chapter Six: Alienating parents; Chapter Seven: Targeted parents; Chapter Eight: Alienated children; Chapter Nine: Other family members; Chapter Ten: Outside forces; Part Three: Assessment of parental alienation; Chapter Eleven: Assessing alienating parents; Chapter Twelve: Assessing targeted parents; Chapter Thirteen: Assessing alienated children; Chapter Fourteen: Assessing dysfunctional family interaction patterns; Part Four: The alienated family: A legal perspective; Chapter Fifteen: Parental alienation in the courts; Chapter Sixteen: Parental alienation and parenting dispute evaluations; Part Five: Intervention with alienated families; Chapter Seventeen: The need for intervention; Chapter Eighteen: Family therapy and beyond; Chapter Nineteen: Individual therapy with each family member; Part Six: Identifying parental alienation; Chapter Twenty: A decision making process; Chapter Twenty-one: Where to from here?; Index

About the Authors

Dr Janet Haines is a psychologist with over twenty years’ experience in private clinical practice. She has extensive experience in matters involving psychology and family law, including acting as a single expert for the Family Law Court of Australia and Federal Circuit Court.

Dr Mandy Matthewson is a senior lecturer in psychology at the University of Tasmania (UTAS) and a clinical psychologist in private practice. She is the lead researcher in the Family and Interpersonal Relationship Research Lab at UTAS and Chair of the Parental Alienation Study Group’s Research Committee.

Marcus Turnbull is a senior partner specialising in Family Law, including child support and de facto relationship matters. Marcus is a Child Representative in the child protection jurisdiction and an Independent Children’s Lawyer in the Family Court and Federal Circuit Court of Australia. Currently, Marcus is the Tasmanian representative of the Family Law Section of the Law Council of Australia, the Chair of the Family Law Practitioners’ Association of Tasmania, and on the Executive of the Australian Institute of Family Lawyers and Mediators.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Mental Health