Entrenched parents participated in, and benefitted from, specialist therapy for the sake of themselves and their children.
Run by The Tavistock Centre for Couple Relationships and Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass) and funded by The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), Parents in Dispute (PiD) targeted long-term separated families in entrenched conflict which involved the family courts.
Remarkably, given the mutual, long-standing antagonism which these parents have towards each other, nearly three-quarters of the parents who attended individual assessments were helped to also attend joint sessions together. For those parents who did attend at least one joint session together, the evaluation showed that they presented a significant increase in the strength of their parenting alliance.
Strengthening this relationship between separated parents is of particular importance given the growing body of evidence which suggests that the quality of co-parenting has both direct and indirect effects on child outcomes, via associations with parents’ psychological wellbeing and parenting capacity.