The DSM is an exhaustive bible used by psychiatrists, psychologists, family practitioners and other health professionals, to classify mental disorders. Now that its publishers are working on its fifth edition, or DSM-V, there is a movement to include Parental Alienation in it, a movement that includes among its members hundreds of mental health professionals, doctors, educators, family law professionals, and prominent citizens from 10 different countries. A team integrated by psychiatrist William Bernet, M.D., Wilfrid v. Boch-Galhau, M.D., Joseph Kenan, M.D., Joan Kinlan, M.D., Demosthenes Lorandos, Ph.D., J.D., Richard Sauber, Ph.D., Bela Sood, M.D., and James S. Walker, PhD, wrote a text titled “Parental Alienation Disorder and DSM-V”, in which they make the case for including Parental Alienation Disorder in DSM-V. Their proposal was submitted to the Disorders in Childhood and Adolescence Work Group in August of 2008.
If Parental Alienation is included in the DSM-V, it will have radical effects in the way this disorder is treated by insurance companies, the pharmaceutical industry, government, and academia. It will increase Parental Alienation’s recognition and legitimacy in the eyes of family court judges, mediators, custody evaluators, family law attorneys, and the legal and mental health community in general. According to the above mentioned William Bernet, adding Parental Alienation “would (…) lend credence to a charge of parental alienation in court, and raise the odds that children would get timely treatment.”
Fathers & Families is asking everyone to write the DSM-V Task Force to urge them to consider including Parental Alienation Disorder. Thanks to this effort, the Task Force has now listed Parental Alienation Disorder among the “Conditions Proposed by Outside Sources” that are under consideration to be included.
The Task Force welcomes comments that could provide evidence indicating that Parental Alienation should be included in DSM-V. People can send letters to the DSM-5 Task Force until the middle of 2010. In 2011 the issue will be considered; the DSM-5 will be written in 2012 and published in 2013. Fathers & Families advises that when you write your letters you should:
1)Keep the focus on your children and how the Parental Alienation has harmed them.
2)Stick to the facts related to the Parental Alienation.
4)Fill in all fields on our form.
5)Be civil and credible, and avoid any profanity or use of insulting language.
6)Emphasize that Parental Alienation Disorder is a large-scale problem.
To send your letters through the Fathers & Families initiative, please click here.
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PRO-JOINT CUSTODY ORGANIZATIONS
- Asociación Española Multidisciplinar de Investigación sobre Interferencias Parentales (ASEMIP)
- Canadian Equal Parenting Council
- Center for Parental Responsibility
- Children's Rights Council
- Grandparents Rights Organization
- Joint Custody Association of Norway
- Kids Need 2 Parents
- National Parents Organization
- Padres y Madres en Acción
- Parental Alienation Awareness Organization
- Plataforma por la Custodia Compartida
FATHER'S RIGHTS ORGANIZATIONS
- American Coalition for Fathers and Children
- Amor de Papá
- Asociación Catalana de Padres Separados
- Dads America
- Dads4Kids: Fatherhood Foundation
- Fathers 4 Justice
- Glenn Sacks
- Great Dad
- Illinois Fathers
- Louisiana Dads
- Padres de la Guarda
- The Fatherhood Educational Institute
- The National Fathers Resource Center