by Hedy Cleaver - £8.95 CoramBAAF (2015)
paperback ISBN 13: 9781910039311 | ISBN 10: 1910039314
Domestic violence is linked strongly to child abuse and neglect and is present in over half of all child protection cases coming to the attention of the NSPCC and identified in a similar proportion of cases that result in care proceedings. Consequently, many foster carers and adoptive parents will be confronted with children whose challenging behaviour has its roots in domestic violence.
An understanding of the impact of domestic violence on children’s health, education, emotional and behavioural development, and family relationships will enable carers and adoptive parents to understand and parent their children more effectively. Here is a book that presents much needed information on these areas.
It explains the effects of domestic violence on the abused (in most cases the mother) and the consequent effects on her ability and capacity to parent, resulting in failure to meet children’s developmental needs and possible abuse and neglect. The author then tracks the effects of domestic violence on children at various developmental stages – infants, children between the ages of five and 12, and adolescents – describing how these may manifest in children’s behaviour, educational attainment, emotional development and relationships. She then considers the challenges that adopter and foster families face and what they can do to help children recover.
All this is vividly illustrated in two moving accounts. The first, by single adoptive parent Helen Dunning, describes her adoption of Lee, now a teenager, and how she has helped him overcome the legacy of domestic violence. In the second, Melinda Rigopoulo describes how she and her husband adopted Luca, a few years after they had their birth children, and how they helped him to manage change and allay his fears of the unknown.
(Price & availability last checked: February 2017)
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In booklists: Adoption and Fostering: Guides for Parents and Families, Domestic Violence & Children, In categories: Children & Young People, Violence & Abuse,