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(#45801) – By Frenzy

As a mother, I'd have to say evenings & night times with my babies/toddlers provided some unique bonding moments that didn't happen through the day, like when bathing them, laying in bed with them, tending to them through the night ect ect. I believe these things were critical in cementing my relationship with my babies (especially my Autistic son) and in helping developing trust.There is alot of evidence regarding the postive benefits of these types of experiences for both parents and their infants/toddlers.

I really can't see how AAMIH can advocate that 3 short daytime visits until at least 2 years of age (2 yo for non conflict situations, 3 years for high conflict cases) could really make up for a father and bub (once non breastfeed) totally missing out on having these experience together as well.


(#45784) – By Kip


Professor Sir Michael Rutter always makes the point that child development is not an 'exact science'.



(#45780) – By Frenzy

Kip said

I do not know if you are already aware that much of the research on Romanian orphans is by Professor Sir Michael Rutter, author of 'Maternal Deprivation Reassessed'.
It may have been his studies I was reading. The studies on orphans I read showed that the % that develop into healthy teens is pretty much the same % as typical western raised infants. From reading up on the criticisms and counter examples of the theory (done by qualified people lol) it's very apparent that the whole theory is not an exact science like April is trying to imply.


(#45778) – By Kip

Fairgo and Frenzy,

Really interesting dialogue.

I have posted a new thread called, The Attachment Theory and 'Maternal Deprivation' - Sexism and Guidelines for Infants and Overnight Care.

I do not know if you are already aware that much of the research on Romanian orphans is by Professor Sir Michael Rutter, author of 'Maternal Deprivation Reassessed'.

He is also concerned about the value of observing so-called attachment behaviour and the gist of his paper from 2009 called 'Emanuel Miller Lecture: Attachment insecurity, disinhibited attachment, and attachment disorders: where do research findings leave the concepts?' was that it is 'seriously misleading to view all of these patterns through the lens of security/insecurity'.

Professor Sir Michael Rutter was also kind enough to describe my work 'even Toddlers Need Fathers', a critique of the principle of maternal deprivation, as an 'interesting and informative guide'.



(#45619) – By Frenzy

Fairgo - I think they have gone way too far. Even if Mcintoshes study and her conclusions are taken on face value to be correct. There is no research that shows Australian infants/toddlers in lesser then one night per week (many parents share over nights on a fortnightly basis) arrangements are or will suffer attachment related issues.

By AAIMH own admission their guidelines are aimed at ALL separated parents and those that work with them, not just high conflict cases or parents going through court. The guidelines could easily be misinterpreted (even deliberately so) by parents, lawyers, mediators, judicial officers ect.   


(#45597) – By Fairgo

So Frenzy where does that leave you regarding the policy of the AAIMH?


(#45569) – By Frenzy

The trouble with any theories (no matter how much research supports them) is they generalize. This leave very little space for individuality and variation.
I studied 20 years years ago when Erikson was still alive. I had a female lecturer telling me it doesn't matter who the person is, as long as bub has a connection with someone then bub will be OK.
Only have to read up on some of the more recent longitudinal studies done on orphans adopted out from places like Romania to question that statement. Although I do agree it important infants have a person to bond with, it is certainly not a given that those that don't end up dysfunctional. 3/4 of orphans in one study from Romania that had no primary carer as infants, turned out to be perfectly adjusted teenagers after they were adopted out as toddlers/young children.

Also studies on Autism and attachment are another area that has researchers who held on to the standard beliefs about attachment scratching their heads. Anyone who has followed the work going on in that area, should realize how attachment research based on observation or parental questioning could very well be so wrong.

The are alot of pieces to the 'attachment' puzzle missing..more and more work in various areas is showing that.


(#45563) – By Fairgo

As far as I am aware the various theories on attachment provide a pretty good balance of perspectives on human behaviour which can provide much insight into how we should view the early years.

I studied 20 years years ago when Erikson was still alive. I had a female lecturer telling me it doesn't matter who the person is, as long as bub has a connection with someone then bub will be OK.

I've also spent the last 8 years raising two babies. One with an ex and the other with my wife.

My ex felt that she was treated like a milking machine by bub (despite mostly bottle feeding - breat feeding was virtually non existent) and was jealous with my relationship with bub.

Second bub is very attached to both my wife and I and despite being breast fed for 2 years on demand (we never used formula or dummies) she would also sometimes feel like a milking machine as bub goes to either of us when attention is required from as early as I can remember, although was very disappointed in the size of my nipples and that they did not have milk!

Both bubs are 5yrs apart and now have a very close relationship thanks to shared care.

Given my experiences I don't agree with what AAIMH is saying. Those guidelines are written to protect the interests of the mother and not necessarily those of the child or the child's relationship with the father.


(#45547) – By Kip


Whether a theory is accepted or not depends on the level of evidence. The first three principles of the AAIMH guidelines are;-

1.If parental separation occurs before birth or in the first years of a childs life, special consideration is
needed to ensure the continuity of a healthy primary attachment, together, where possible, with the
safe building or maintenance of a warm, available relationship with the second parent.

2. As this may be a very difficult time for all concerned, separated parents may need extra help to
understand that frequent, fixed overnight shared-time parenting schedules during the first years, while
well intentioned, may severely disrupt important developmental gains for their young child.

3. Under the age of two years, overnight separations from the primary parent create unique stresses
for the infant. In the majority of circumstances, non-essential overnight separations during these
critical months of development are not advisable. Thus, in general, but always guided by the unique
needs of each infant, prior to the age of two years, overnight time away from the primary care-giver
should be avoided, unless necessary. Day times away from the primary parent should be kept to
manageable periods of time, which can gradually increase as the infant matures.
These are based on the discredited theory of 'maternal deprivation' ie that if children are separated from their mother they will suffer.

Professor Sir Michael Rutter showed that children do not suffer as a result of separation in his seminal work 'Maternal Deprivation Reassessed';

i. Investigations have demonstrated the importance of a child's relationship with people other than his mother.
ii. Most important of all there has been repeated findings that many children are not damaged by deprivation.
iii. The old issue of critical periods of development and the crucial importance of early years has been re-opened and re-examined. The evidence is unequivocal that experiences at all ages have an impact.
iv. It may be the first few years do have a special importance for bond formation and social development. ('Maternal Deprivation; Reassessed, Second Edition, 1981, pp.217)
The guidelines seek to repackage Bowlby's earlier work and in her justification Dr McIntosh relies on the marginal work of Dr Allan Schore, nick-named the 'American Bowlby', and Dr Alan Sroufe who states in the main article cited that 'Men can't nurse'. I would argue this is the crux of the case.

I was asked on to the 'Dads on the Air' radio show to talk about these guidelines because I have written a book called, 'even Toddlers Need Fathers' which Professor Sir Michael Rutter described as an 'interesting and informative guide'.

In the first part of the interview I discuss the research background to these guidelines with reference to the theory of 'maternal deprivation' which you can hear on YouTUBE, "Men Can't Nurse" say Australian Guidelines on contact for fathers from Dr Jennifer McIntosh - PART ONE


In the second part of the interview I specifically mention the guidelines and refer to Dr McIntoshes justification and go on to describe the present research which you can hear on YouTUBE at, "Men Can't Nurse" say Australian Guidelines on contact for fathers from Dr Jennifer McIntosh - PART TWO


There is no 'empirical' evidence to justify these guidelines and instead they are based on a discredited and sexist theory of child development.

Many thanks,



(#45544) – By Frenzy

The whole document is open to interpretation.

According to an article published in the manning river times in Dec last year, it appears AAIMH are advocating for non court parents to not have over night contact under 2 yo & those involved in court cases not until 3 yo. I am guessing that the year difference is because they assume court cases are always the high conflict cases, not always true as the Darcy Freeman case sadly high lighted.
The guidelines recommend non-custodial parents, nine out of 10 of whom are fathers, should instead see children under two during the day, up to three times a week, gradually phasing in overnight visits after the second birthday. Families fighting custody battles in the Family Court should not share custody until the child is three.


(#45536) – By Fairgo

But what does this actually mean - " no overnights unless absolutely necessary"

Does it mean instead of letting friends look after bub whilst mum is out partying she let's dad look after bub?

The statement is a bit open ended.


(#45523) – By Frenzy

The results showed, that infants who were in shared care (i.e. one or more nights per week away from primary carer) demonstrated significantly more irritability (this does not mean just a few extra minutes of crying each day) and they were more vigilant about monitoring the whereabouts of their primary carer (instead of exploring their environment and playing which is what they should be doing).  These results showed that the shared care arrangement made a unique and significant contribution to negative outcomes for the infant
And yet the 'one or more nights per week' has been interpreted by the AAIMHI to mean no over nights unless absolutely necessary. There are NO studies based on modern society, mentioned in the back ground paper to the guidelines, that support the no over night unless necessary stance they have taken.

 Unfortunately for those non primary carers that ask for less then one night per week (fortnightly for example), the AAIMHI guidelines could very well be damming.

There is alot of research going on in various psycho-physiological & psychological areas, that is indicating that alterations in various aspects of attachment theory may not be that far off.


(#45515) – By Frenzy

Again, this is not theory, it is demonstrated via empirical research and observations
Attachment theory is actually a group of theories, that come under the banner of developmental theories which provide a frame work for thinking about human growth, development, and learning. Just because something is 'demonstrated by research' does NOT mean it is no longer considered a theory, at least not in the realm of psychology. In psychology theories, even when backed by research evidence come and go, some hold up for a long time, others not so long.  Anyone who has studied 1st year psych would be aware of this. 

If this well read TAFEer must spruik her product here then she should disclose her self-interest - Ms Nichola Coombs, of Australian Association for Infant Mental Health - and pay for advertising.


(#45507) – By srldad101

Remember folks there is no valid evidence for these AAIMI guidelines. They are as scientifically valid as guidelines to mine cheese from the moon. Follow them and you are guaranteed to lose your kids and money - which is their real purpose.

April can you please explain how Dr McIntosh used "linear regression modelling" to supplement her data sample size of 68 persons in "High Conflict" for her "Cautionary Tale"? Is this valid?

And why Dr McIntosh, who provides the empirical basis and observations for your guidelines, contraindications against shared care also prohibits shared parenting in the marriage relationship?

Do we see a pattern here?


(#45504) – By Frenzy

Why would any one want to do that to their own child? We are only talking about a small part of the infants life, where it organises itself to face the world as a young child. Why are there so many people prepared to mess this up?
I don't think anyone is advocating for anything like that. Personally I believe it is not necessary to actually restrict ALL overnight care from a father (once an infant stops being breastfeed). I am not suggesting 50/50 equal care (even with older children that is often unsuitable) but I don't see any harm in non breast feed infants /toddlers spending 1 or 2 nights every month/fortnight with the father. If non breast feed infants/toddlers can spend one or two night with grandparents ect with out affecting the primary care relationship then why not fathers?

Does less then equal care affect infant/ toddlers?, what is the exact frequency of time away from a primary carers that would cause the child to grow up with emotional issues later in life? Has differing frequencies of contact actually been looked into?. You say prolonged absences what exactly is prolonged?


(#45500) – By Frenzy

There are those involved in psychology, ethology research ect that do support the idea that infants can become attached to a number of adults equally, without any detrimental effects on their attachment to the primary caregiver. Probably what happens in other cultures which have more then one primary carer, like the African- Americans who raise children with up to 5 primary carers.

There are many different schools of thought on the matter and it's worth reading them


(#45490) – By Kip


Kalimnadancer beat me to it!

kalimnadancer said

April infants can attach to many people. There is not just one person for each baby. If this was the case grandparents, babysitters, relatives, parents, siblings, creche workers, adoptive and foster parents would never be able to have a child in their care as the child would not cope. Babies who do not cope would scream the house down as this is their communication means. This would make care impossible. Babies need to be with all family so they can bond with the baby. It is harder to bond with a child for the adult as well as the child. Maybe you could do a study to find out how well the child and adult manage when no bond is formed from infancy and at age of 3 or more they start from scratch with limited time to use due to restrictions from the "primary carer"

I cited this research in my previous posting. It showed that sometimes babies bond with the mother. Sometimes to the father. Sometimes to the father even though it was the mother who spent most time with the baby. The research showed that babies respond to those who are most sensitive to their needs and that they can form 'multiple attachments'.

REF; Schaffer, H. R. and Emerson, P. E. (1964), PATTERNS OF RESPONSE TO PHYSICAL CONTACT IN EARLY HUMAN DEVELOPMENT. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 5: 113. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-7610.1964.tb02126.x

It is quite significant in research terms because it undermines Bowlby's claim, repeated by April, that 'bonding' is innate by suggesting that parenting is an acquired skill.


"Men Can't Nurse" say Australian Guidelines on contact for fathers from Dr Jennifer McIntosh - PART ONE

VIDEO - http://youtu.be/WO2tC-TUsMs


(#45489) – By kalimnadancer

Infants can attach to many people.

There is not just one person for each baby. If this was the case grandparents, babysitters, relatives, parents, siblings, creche workers, adoptive and foster parents would never be able to have a child in their care as the child would not cope. Babies who do not cope would scream the house down as this is their communication means. This would make care impossible.

Babies need to be with all family so they can bond with the baby. It is harder to bond with a child for the adult as well as the child. Maybe you could do a study to find out how well the child and adult manage when no bond is formed from infancy and at age of 3 or more they start from scratch with limited time to use due to restrictions from the "primary carer"


(#45485) – By Kip

At the end of the interview with 'Dads on the Air' I quote from Professor Sir Michael Rutter':

"One needs to have multiple opportunities of relationships so it is a good thing, as it is with anything, you don't want to put everything on one thing".

Do you not think it is in the interests of the child to have more than one primary caregiver?


REF; Schaffer, H. R. and Emerson, P. E. (1964), PATTERNS OF RESPONSE TO PHYSICAL CONTACT IN EARLY HUMAN DEVELOPMENT. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 5:113. doi:10.1111/j.1469-7610.1964.tb02126.x


(#45422) – By Fairgo

All I can add for now April is that you left the "s" of the word relationship in your last paragraph and Erikson supports this:

The Erikson life-stage virtues, in the order of the stages in which they may be acquired, are:

Hope - Basic Trust vs. Mistrust - Infant stage / 0-1 year. Does the child believe its caregivers to be reliable?

Will - Autonomy vs. Shame and Doubt - Toddler stage / 13 years. Child needs to learn to explore the world. Bad if the parent is too smothering or completely neglectful.

Purpose - Initiative vs. Guilt - Preschool / 36 years - Does the child have the ability to or do things on their own, such as dress him or herself? If "guilty" about making his or her own choices, the child will not function well. Erikson has a positive outlook on this stage, saying that most guilt is quickly compensated by a sense of accomplishment.

Competence - Industry vs. Inferiority - School-age / 6-11. Child comparing self worth to others (such as in a classroom environment). Child can recognize major disparities in personal abilities relative to other children. Erikson places some emphasis on the teacher, who should ensure that children do not feel inferior.

Fidelity - Identity vs. Role Confusion - Adolescent / 12 years till 20. Questioning of self. Who am I, how do I fit in? Where am I going in life? Erikson believes that if the parents allow the child to explore, they will conclude their own identity. However, if the parents continually push him/her to conform to their views, the teen will face identity confusion.

Intimacy vs. isolation - This is the first stage of adult development. This development usually happens during young adulthood, which is between the ages of 20 to 24. Dating, marriage, family and friendships are important during the stage in their life. By successfully forming loving relationships with other people, individuals are able to experience love and intimacy. Those who fail to form lasting relationships may feel isolated and alone.

Generativity vs. stagnation is the second stage of adulthood and happens between the ages of 25-64. During this time, people are normally settled in their life and know what is important to them. A person is either making progress in their career or treading lightly in their career and unsure about if this is what they want to do for the rest of their working lives. Also during this time, a person is enjoying raising their children and participating in activities that gives them a sense on purpose. If a person is not comfortable with the way their life is progressing, they're usually regretful about the decisions and feel a sense of uselessness.

Ego integrity vs. despair. This stage affects the age group of 65 and on. During this time you have reached the last chapter in your life and retirement is approaching or has already taken place. Many people who have achieved what was important to them look back on their lives and feel great accomplishment and a sense of integrity. Conversely, those who had a difficult time during middle adulthood may look back and feel a sense of despair.


(#45420) – By Kip

Always glad to discuss Bowlby's work.

Pandering Feminist said

Kip, Bowlby himself corrected himself in 1988 (Secure Base) with regards to the theory of "Maternal Deprivation". Michael Rutter did not discredit Bowlby's work. In a video interview he said that he agreed more than disagreed. Both of them, Bowlby and Rutter, acknowledged that infants form attachment to any consistant caregiver who is sensitive and responsive in social interaction with the infant. The mother is usually (not always) the principal attachment figure but that role can be taken up by any person who acts "motherly" over a period of time when interacting with the infant. Nothing in the theory has ever suggested that fathers cannot be the principal caregiver.

It is rather people with hidden agendas that uses the theory, out of context, for personal gain, be it mothers or fathers or lawyers or courts orgovernments...
I am sorry to say that Bowlby did not 'correct himself' as you put it, others had to do it for him. Indeed if he had not made a mistake there would be no need for any correction. Even so, I do not know whether you have followed the discussion with APRIL but I think we have established that in his original work Bowlby said fathers play 'second fiddle' and even towards the end of his career in 1986 when asked for his 'citation classic' (see below) he selected 'Maternal Care and Mental Health' because it 'focused attention on the mother's relationship with the young child as an important determinant sic of mental health'. He never accepted that fathers could be equally as important as mothers. (Unless you can cite such a quote).

I do not know whether you have followed the discussions so far but what I tend to find is that people make comments without watching the videos or reading the comments therefore do not fully grasp the arguments. So I think you maybe repeating what is the gist of my radio interview in which I say that Dr McIntosh is using the theory of 'maternal deprivation' for her own agenda. For example she has cited Dr Schore, nick-named the 'American Bowlby', because his work suggests that mothers have different brains to fathers (VIDEO - Dr Jennifer McIntosh and the Bowlby / Ainsworth Paradigm & VIDEO - Dr Jennifer McIntosh and the Neuroscience of Shared Parenting ) and Dr Alan Sroufe who says 'Men can't nurse' (VIDEO - Professor Alan Sroufe and Shared Parenting -Divorce and Attachment Relationships). In the radio programme I cite these examples from Dr McIntoshes own paper. (If you have seen these videos or looked at the journal already I apologise).

In the programme we ran out of time and I have made a couple of requests to go back and finish-up the 'maternal deprivation' angle. What I wanted to say is that my critics, for example APRIL, will argue that I blame Dr McIntosh for drawing false correlations and 'boot strapping' but that is exactly what I am doing!

That is the reason I wanted to end by quoting verbatim from the Family Justice Review journal interview with Daniel Siegel. In this special edition of the family law journal which she edited Dr McIntosh makes no bones about coming from a Bowlby tradition. In each of the interviews she promotes the idea of the single primary care giver, usually the mother. Most agree (because they come from a Bowlby tradition) but Dr Siegel, who is trained as a medical doctor and is a psychiatric professor, from a Rutter tradition, takes a different stance;
McIntosh: Questions that arise often in the family law arena include these: Can you have two primary caregivers? Is there any evidence about the brains of mothers and fathers working any differently over the care-giving tasks?

Siegel: Others may say no, you do not have two primary attachment figures, but I think you can over
time, within the same home. But those parents do different things. In divorce, having two primary
attachment figures is probably different. I am not the person to ask about the gender question, because
I have a peculiar aversion to gender-specific generalizations. I know there is neurobiological research
that demonstrates differences. I just cannot get myself to take those findings seriously because of my
own experience as a father, because of my own experience of my parents, because of my experience
as a therapist. Both men and women have deep potentials for caring for infants.

McIntosh: The gender issue is something I would like to dismiss too, but it is endemic to family law
and it perpetually rears its head in court decisions and influences policy directions.

Siegel: My understanding of attachment categories is that they are totally gender neutral. I know
people say women are more integrated because their corpus callosum is thicker. So what? That does
not mean you cannot have a loving relationship as a male with an infant. Now, we do have these things
called gender roles, where the male feels like he has to go out and earn money, and the female thinks
that she has to be at home. But I think that is a sociologically reinforced, perhaps genetically induced
tendency, but it does not have to be fixed at all. Ive seen plenty of fathers be unbelievable primary
caregivers, and the woman is out and about working. And the children do extremely well. Attachment
categories are gender-neutral.

McIntosh: If we could hose down the gender debate about attachment, then we might actually get
down to talking about the function of a primary caregiver: whether you are the mother or the father,
what is it that a primary attachment figure does to support optimal development? I see that as the
discussion that is most needed. Allan Schore talks about the importance of psychological gender and
the ability to fulfill the functions of the primary caregiver role: being nurturing, responsive, and a
secure base for comfort.

Siegel: Absolutely! I mean, if you outline the basics of a primary caregiver, you see how gender
neutral it is. The primary caregiver is someone who is tuned in to the internal experience of the child,
not just the childs behavior. That is the simplest way to say it. Males can do it, and females can do
it. And some females cannot do it, and some males cannot do it. It is really a matter of seeing the
internal world, not just managing behavior. And this reflective function can be taught: most can learn
to have mindsight enabling us to perceive our own and others internal worlds.
In this exchange Dr Siegel dismisses the neurobiological claims made by Dr Schore (PhD) as 'laughable' and whilst Dr Sroufe (PhD) says men can't nurse, he says 'My understanding of attachment categories is that they are totally gender neutral' and does not qualify the quote.

I wanted to conclude with this extract because it confirms the contents of my interview with Dads on the Air ie it is not just me citing Professor Sir Michael Rutter!

Of course Dr McIntosh does not refer to Dr Siegel because he does not agree with her view of child development. Instead she promotes the marginal views of Dr Schore and Dr Sroufe as mainstream.

Dr McIntoshes guidelines are based on a discredited and sexist view of child development and as such should disqualify her from any further involvement with the Attorney General's department because the law, including family law, should be impartial and objective.

I hope this is an accurate summary of the arguments.

Kingsley Miller kip

VIDEO - Dr Jennifer McIntosh and the Bowlby / Ainsworth Paradigm


VIDEO - Dr Jennifer McIntosh and the Neuroscience of Shared Parenting - Dr Allan Schore and Professor Daniel Siegel


VIDEO - Professor Alan Sroufe and Shared Parenting -Divorce and Attachment Relationships


VIDEO - "Men Can't Nurse" say Australian Guidelines on contact for fathers from Dr Jennifer McIntosh - PART onE


VIDEO - "Men Can't Nurse" say Australian Guidelines on contact for fathers from Dr Jennifer McIntosh - PART TWO


LINK - Maternal Care and Mental Health - This Week's Citation Classic DECEMBER15,1986. BowlbyJ.




(#45405) – By Fairgo

Kip - I agree with you and will go as far as saying that children are more able to adapt to change than adults. As families grow parents and children are constantly adapting to change whether changes are ocurring in or out of the household whether families are living together or not.

If children are less able to adapt to change when parents split, which is debatable, it is due to suffering from the loss of a parent as they have lost half of their emotional support network so it would be important that the loss is restored ASAP.

This is where confict between parents becomes an issue and making one gender parent the default carer will not solve any problems.

I think we should be looking at Erikson's work along Piage and Maslow's theories to help us understand what is going on with our children.


(#43961) – By Kip


This posting is to draw attention to a more recent posting on the same subject.

In the above discussion APRIL refers to Bowlby and Ainsworth. In her first postings (Please track back) she was relying on their research to justify her approach to contact and custody disputes. When it was pointed out to APRIL that in fact right up until the end of his career (See Citation Classic, 1986) Bowlby still believed the mother was an important determinant of mental health she changed her tune and accepted that this view is sexist but the up to date version of attachment is not.

Nevertheless throughout the discussion her opinion is dominated by the Bowlby / Ainsworth view of attachment.

I am from the UK but I can see from developments in Australia that the government is heading towards a Neo-Bowlbyism view of attachment based on his discredited theory of 'maternal deprivation'.

This view was reinforced when I discovered that JENN MCINTOSH actually interviewed his son Sir Richard Bowlby for the journal FAMILY COURT REVIEW. He is considered by many within the profession as a 'mountebank' and his ideas are, to put it technically, not very good!

JENN MCINTOSHES guidelines on overnight stays is based on BOWLBY'S concept of MONOTROPY which, again being technical, is not very good.

The work of JENN MCINTOSH is very similar to the ideas of APRIL on this forum and I am really grateful that she has prompted me to write to the NEW Attorney General (COPY) on a NEW THREAD at;

PART ONE; Australian Family Law: The contribution of Dr Jennifer McIntosh and Dr John Bowlby

A major similarity is they both focus on the 'Bowlby Aisworth paradigm' but also APRIL had never heard of the work of Professor Sir Michael Rutter which is the same as JENN MCINTOSH. (He is described as the 'father of modern child psychiatry')

APRIL are you really JENN MCINTOSH in disguise?


PS I am very grateful to all those on this forum for allowing me to express my thoughts.


I posted a request to see if anybody could get access to this research ONLINE in November with no success.


This guy Rutter is not well known but is regarded as the 'father of modern child psychiatry' off the back of writing the seminal work that undermined John Bowlby's professional career. Bowlby  had always said mothers are more important than fathers to small children but Rutter pointed out that this is not so and they respond to the person MOST SENSITIVE TO THEIR NEEDS, not their gender, in his seminal work 'Maternal Deprivation Reassessed' (1972).

Anyway, you know that stuff where you are not supposed to argue in front of the kids, well, Rutter actually did the research which showed that was TRUE because he is a very clever bloke. It is a MUST READ and that is the reason I posted the request in the first place.

As a taster and poor alternative, for those of us that can't get access, I have produced 2 videos based on the PAPER;

PARENTAL SEPARATION: Psychological effects on children


PARENTAL CONFLICT: Psychological effects on children


Many thanks,




(#43203) – By Kip

Children can adapt to change?

Bowlby was wrong his ideas were based on a 'fairy tale' which sent attachment theory up a 'blind alley'.

I told you about the work of Rutter who you had never heard of until 2 weeks ago. When I pointed this out you said,

However, may I suggest that the condescending way that you communicate to people who challenge your opinions may prevent your message from being properly considered.

Your ideas are now based on Ainsworth's (see earlier postings) ideas who was a colleague of Bowlby. Children adapt to change when they go to school. Adopted children do not suffer. Children adjust to change better than adults.

You say,

Why should the kids be the ones doing the adjusting post separation?

The reason quite simply is that psychologically and sociologically children need the love and affection of both parents.

A judge said something similar to me about my own child. He described me as a 'stranger'. I said to him as a teacher on the first day of school I have 25 children enter my class as 'strangers' and none of them have a problem. That was the last we heard of that argument.

Your postings are all about 'containment' and 'control' and you are acting as an 'apologist' for the system.

Kingsley Miller

PS I would recommend anybody else back track through the postings.


Research term / Family court meaning (#43149) – By Kip


Dr John Bowlby = Mother

Attachment theory = Maternal Deprivation

Ainsworth = Bowlby

Monotropy = Term used by Bowlby to describe 'maternal deprivation'

Secure base = Live with mother

Primary carer = Mother

Attachment figure = Mother

Sensitive period = Up to the age of 18

Tender years = Sensitive period

Critical period = Period during which a child will become a delinquent if deprived of mother, usually up to the age of 18

Seriously if you get involved in a discussion about the attachment theory and somebody in authority says that mothers are 'naturally' better parents than fathers and try to use the 'attachment theory' to justify their argument, they are wrong. They are referring to John Bowlby's attachment theory which is also called 'maternal deprivation'. This theory is discredited. If you hear the name Bowlby you know you are in trouble!

All the above terms are used to justify making court orders in favour of mothers but there is no reason in the world they should not be applied equally to fathers.


Please add any more terms that you think may be applicable.



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