Parenting a Child Who Has Experienced Abuse or Neglect

Children who have been abused or neglected need safe and nurturing relationships that address the effects of child maltreatment. This factsheet is intended to help parents (birth, foster, and adoptive) and other caregivers better understand the challenges of caring for a child who has experienced maltreatment and learn about the resources available for support.

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1 Reply to "Parenting a Child Who Has Experienced Abuse or Neglect"

  • Jean Mercer
    May 20, 2015 (2:10 pm)

    Dear Mr. Marsh– Your name was mentioned to me by a person commenting on my blog,, so I came to look at your site. I want to point out that the document above contains a reference to material by Keck and Kupecky. The work of these authors is completely inappropriate to recommend to parents, as it is founded on a system of mistaken beliefs about attachment, including the idea that authoritarian, intimidating behavior causes attachment to occur. You may remember the 2000 death of Candace Newmaker, an adopted child from North Carolina, in a form of therapy related to the belief system espoused by Keck and Kupecky. Although there is little empirical research on this issue, I think it is probably true that a small but significant number of deaths of adoptees in the U.S. occur as a result of this belief system. I would be happy to discuss this further at your convenience, or you may want to look at this book:

    Mercer,J., Sarner, L., & Rosa,L. (2003). Attachment therapy on trial. Westport, CT: Praeger.