Social Work - Research Publications
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ItemWhat’s in a name? Reflections on the term 'non-abusing parent'Hooper, Carol-Ann ; Humphreys, Catherine (John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., 1997)For some time we have been concerned that the use of the term ’non-abusing parent’ in recent years may have had some negative consequences for policy and practice. This term has been widely adopted to refer to one parent, usually the woman, where a child has been sexually abused by the other, or to both mother and father where a child has been sexually abused by a non-parent. Our concern is that it may enable the needs for professional help of both parents and children in these circumstances to be overlooked.
ItemChild sexual abuse allegations in the context of divorce: issues for mothersHumphreys, Catherine (British Association of Social Workers, 1997)The investigation and assessment of allegations of child sexual abuse constitute a difficult and contentious area for practitioners involved in this process. When these allegations emerge in the context of divorce, the problems of assessment appear to be compounded. This paper argues that when mothers raise concerns about child sexual abuse during divorce proceedings these are often construed as vindictive or misguided. Such constructions of mothers have significant implications for the protection,or lack of protection of children in these circumstances. The way in which this ’knowledge’ about mothers has developed is explored and held up against the results of empirical studies which show that there is little basis for this construction of mothers. Possible explanations for this incongruity are suggested with a view to progressing child protection in this area.
ItemWomen whose children have been sexually abused: reflections on a debateHooper, Carol-Ann ; Humphreys, Catherine (British Association of Social Workers, 1998)Women whose children have been sexually abused have been the subject of a polarized debate between feminist practitioners/writers and family therapists. This paper explores the development of that debate, outlining the key characteristics of work which was informed by family systems perspectives and the contrasting understandings which feminist perspectives brought to analysis and practice. Both feminist perspectives and family therapy have changed since the original debate erupted. This article explores issues which may have been obscured within feminist perspectives. These are, first, the difficulties in the mother-child relationship and, second, the contribution which aspects of family therapy can make to progressing the interests of women and children in the aftermath of child sexual abuse.