Mothers Unite UK

Domestic and child abuse in Family Court

Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) is a discredited theory invented by Richard Gardner in the 1980s defining it as:

     "...a disorder that arises primarily in the context of child custody disputes. Its primary manifestation is the child's campaign of denigration against a parent, a campaign that has no justification. It results from the combination of a programming (brainwashing) parent's indoctrinations and the child's own contributions to the vilification of the target parent."

The admissibility of PAS has been rejected by an expert review panel and the Court of Appeal of England and Wales in the United Kingdom. Gardner portrayed PAS as well accepted by the judiciary and having set a variety of precedents, however legal analysis of the actual cases indicates that as of 2006 this claim was incorrect. It is used against mothers and children when they talk about abusive behaviour from the father and is a common tactic of a fathers lawyers to use this allegation, whether by the name PAS or another. Its a set up and traps mothers and children into a Catch 22 situation, so if they continue to talk of abuse or the child refuses or fears contact with the father, they are effectively punished by being forced to see the father alone, or even to live with him. The mother is punished by having to send her child on a regular basis to an abusive and dangerous situation or face losing their child. Loss of residence is frequently used as a threat.

On the Home Page you will see links to articles on PAS. Here are more on the theory

Why 'Parental Alienation' should not be used

Boy hangs himself

The Worst of Richard Gardner

How Parental Alienation Syndrome Is Changing Custody Cases

The Truth Behind Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS)

“If the mother has reacted to the abuse in a hysterical fashion, or used it as an excuse for a campaign of denigration of the father, then the therapist does well to try and ‘sober her up’. . . Her hysterics . . . will contribute to the child’s feeling that a heinous crime has been committed and will thereby lessen the likelihood of any kind of rapproachment with the father. One has to do everything possible to help her put the ‘crime’ in proper perspective. She has to be helped to appreciate that in most societies in the history of the world, such behavior was ubiquitous [i.e., everywhere], and this is still the case.”
True and False (pp. 576-7)

“One of the steps that society must take to deal with the present hysteria is to ‘come off it’ and take a more realistic attitude toward pedophilic behavior.”
Sex Abuse Hysteria (p. 120)

“The Draconian punishments meted out to pedophiles go far beyond what I consider to be the gravity of the crime.”
Sex Abuse Hysteria (p. 118)

PAS Is Deeply Flawed

In addition to the lack of any scientific basis to justify PAS, it is an illogical theory that is based on circular reasoning.  PAS assumes that if a child does not like the father, is afraid of him and does not wish to spend time with the father the only possible explanation is that the mother is alienating the child.

PAS is based on the biased belief that virtually all reports mothers or children make about abuse are false.  To the extent that there is anything to support this claim it is that proponents of PAS automatically disbelieve virtually every report and use their own biased results to support PAS.  In reality, in the context of contested custody cases, less than two percent of reports by mothers against fathers are deliberately false. This fact alone should fully discredit PAS.

Parental Alienation Syndrome! Is it another way abusive parents can rein coercive control over a genuine protective parent?
July 10, 2017 Growthful Souls

The Question for Family Courts: How Can You Give More Influence to a Pro Pedophile Theory than Scientific Research from the CDC and U.S. Justice Dept

Do courts use a controversial theory to punish mothers who allege abuse?

Parental Alienation Syndrome & Violence against women
'...empirical research has found that the PAS theory is built upon an assumption which is the opposite of the truth: Where PAS presumes that mothers are vengeful and pathologically ""program"" their children, it is not women and children, but noncustodial fathers who are most likely to fabricate child maltreatment claims.' Joan S. Meier

Parental Alienation Syndrome: The Hoax that Hurts Children
Richard Gardner did not rely on any research to concoct his theory of Parental Alienation Syndrome.  Instead it came from his personal experiences, beliefs and biases.  His outrageous bias is demonstrated by many public statements to the effect that sex between adults and children can be acceptable

The “success” of force reunification
Stop Abuse Campaign

Family Court using discredited US theory
'Gardner’s recommendations were that the mother reporting violence and abuse should be encouraged to stay with the abusive father; she should be helped over her “anger;” and the child should be placed in the father’s care in cases of separation'

Parental Alienation Syndrome

Information on Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS)

“PAS as developed and purveyed by Richard Gardner has neither a logical nor a scientific basis. It is rejected by responsible social scientists and lacks solid grounding in psychological theory or research.”

Combating False Allegations of Parental Alienation (PAS)

So-called “PAS” Treatment Found to be Quack Therapy

Bravo to Dr. Peter Jaffe for speaking out against this Nazi-like “deprogramming” that is inflicting psychological terror upon little children who are ripped from their loving parents.

Perverse Reversal of Child Custody


"In the interest of justice to the accused," Dr. Gardner purports that the criteria he uses to determine whether an allegation of sexual abuse is fabricated should err on the side of finding innocent some men who are in fact guilty of child molestation.'

Children’s Legal Rights Journal
Jennifer Hoult, J.D.

Parental Alienation Syndrome Leading

An unsafe and unsound theory of human behaviour which is leading to Perverse Reversal of Child Custody placing children at serious risk of harm. 'Richard Ducote an attorney at law in New Orleans stated in 2003 of Gardner and his PAS theory that “PAS is a bogus, pro-paedophiliac fraud concocted by Richard Gardner. I was the last attorney to cross-examine Gardner in Patterson New Jersey.'

The Worst of Richard Gardner (Deceased 2003)

"What would a good mother do if her child told her of sexual abuse by his or her father?", asked film produce Garland Waller during a videotaped interview of Richard Gardner for her award-winning documentary, Small Justice. His answer: "What would she say? Don't you say that about your father. If you do, I'll beat you."

It boggles the mind to think that this man's ideas have been more persuasive to some judges and evaluators than the sworn testimony of abused women and children.'

Parental Alienation Syndrome

Information on Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS)

'As a political advocate, Gardner lobbied to abolish mandated reporting of child abuse, to abolish immunity for reporters of child abuse, and for the creation of federally funded programs to assist individuals claiming to be falsely accused.”

PAS is a Scam
So-called “PAS” Treatment Found to be Quack Therapy

Bravo to Dr. Peter Jaffe for speaking out against this Nazi-like “deprogramming” that is inflicting psychological terror upon little children who are ripped from their loving parents.

Gender Biased and Punitive: Why Abusers Get Away With Claiming “Parental Alienation”

Maternal Alienation

 No, You Haven't.

Richard Gardner: "If he [the molesting father] doesn't know this already, he has to be helped to appreciate that pedophilia has been considered the norm by the vast majority of individuals in the history of the world. He has to be helped to appreciate that, even today, it is a widespread and accepted practice among literally billions of people. He has to appreciate that in our Western society especially, we take a very punitive and moralistic attitude toward such inclinations... He has had a certain amount of back [sic] luck with regard to the place and time he was born with regard to social attitudes toward pedophilia. However, these are not reasons to condemn himself." Ibid. pp.593

This Article provides a brief literature survey, focusing on thetheory of “parental alienation” which operates as a primary vehicle
for making abuse invisible in custody litigation.

Mothers for Justice video on PAS

'Gardner blames the father's abuse on the mother, who he faults for not fulfilling her husband sexually. He suggests that therapists should help mother's of incest victims achieve sexual gratification. '

The Presidential Task Force of the American Psychological Association on Violence in the Family has stated that “there are no data to support the phenomenon called parental alienation syndrome, in which mothers are blamed for interfering with their children’s attachment to their fathers. . . .” The National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ) likewise finds PAS lacking in scientific merit, advising judges that based on evidentiary standards, “the court should not accept testimony regarding parental alienation syndrome, or ‘PAS.’ The theory positing the existence of PAS had been discredited by the scientific community”; and “the discredited ‘diagnosis’ of ‘PAS’ (or allegation of ‘parental alienation’), quite apart from its scientific invalidity, inappropriately asks the court to assume that the children’s behaviors and attitudes toward the parent who claims to be ‘alienated’ have no grounding in reality.”  Parental Alienation Syndrome: 30 Years On and Still Junk Science