Redux: Dr. Bernet, join me.

Dr. Bernet,

It’s come to my attention that you’re not aware of my offers to collaborate and work together.  That’s unfortunate.  That must mean that you’re not subscribed to my blog.  That too, is unfortunate.  Is that because you don’t think I have anything valuable to say?

To clarify, I offered collaboration in the blog post from September:

Dr. Bernet, join me. (posted 9/5/17)

Let me reiterate from my post in September;

From Dr. Bernet, join me (posted 9/5/17):

The diagnostic paradigm for the attachment-related pathology commonly called “parental alienation” is changing.

I’m asking for you to join me in creating this change.

You have been a stalwart and steady warrior for targeted parents through all of these years.  I saw how you tried to influence the formation of the DSM diagnostic system… You have fought a heroic struggle against the pathology for many years.  Admirable.  Magnificent.

But ultimately, the Gardnerian PAS model has fatal flaws embedded within it.  You didn’t have the proper tool to solve the pathology.  I can tell you exactly what those inherent and terminal problems with the Gardnerian PAS model are – but not now.

The construct of meme-structures will help you understand a lot of things.

Dawkins: The Selfish Gene

Gardnerian PAS is a failed diagnostic paradigm.

The only issue that is relevant at a professional-level is the solution.  It is not relevant how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.

AB-PA provides a solution.

Gardnerian PAS does not.

The world is changing.

Stop fighting against AB-PA and fighting against the change it brings.  I am not the source of this change, I am merely the conduit.  There are larger forces at work here.

I would like to propose that we write two collaborative articles together, Dr. Bernet.

The first one would be a reflection on history and the future.  It would pass the torch from Gardnerian PAS to AB-PA for the solution.  We’re both a couple of old guys, Dr. Beret.  This isn’t about us.  There will be a new generation coming to take on the fight against the pathology.

AB-PA is a richer diagnostic model than the Gardnerian model because AB-PA opens wide the full data sets of attachment theory, intersubjectivity, personality disorder pathology, family systems therapy, and complex trauma.

The categorical AB-PA diagnostic framework lends itself better to “operationally defining” the construct of “parental alienation” for research purposes, and those 12 Associated Clinical Signs are jewels – both clinically and from a research perspective.

It will be impossible to prevent AB-PA from fully entering professional discussion and professional practice.  Help me to define the legacy of our fight against the pathogen to the next generation.

I propose that in the first half of a joint collaborative article, you describe the first-fight against the pathogen.  Tell us about Gardner’s courage, the malevolence of the pathology, all the research and the battle surrounding Gardnerian PAS.  Bring out whatever data sets you want and revel in it.

And then end your segment of the article by passing the torch for the solution to AB-PA.

Then let me take the second half of the article to explain that, as courageous and magnificent as Gardner may have been, he skipped the step of diagnosis; the application of standard and established constructs and principles to a set of symptoms.  Instead, he too quickly abandoned the rigors of professional practice by proposing a “new form of pathology” which led professional psychology away from the standards of professional practice regarding diagnosis; the application of standard and established constructs and principles to a set of symptoms (no “unique new forms of pathology” diagnostic proposals).

I’ll describe how AB-PA returns to the foundations of the pathology and corrects this diagnostic step skipped by Gardner.  AB-PA defines the pathology (the set of symptoms) from entirely within standard and established constructs and principles.  Here’s what AB-PA says; pathological mourning, the trans-generational transmission of attachment trauma, the addition of splitting pathology to a cross-generational coalition, we need to return to standard and established constructs and principles in our professional diagnosis of pathology, and AB-PA does this.

You and I, in a joint article, bring together both the history and the future of our efforts to solve the pathology of “parental alienation.”

Then, let’s write a second article together.  A much more interesting article.  Let’s set the stage for completing your work with the DSM diagnostic system.  Let’s set the stage for the next generation in their efforts to include the pathology of “parental alienation” into the DSM diagnostic system.

Together, you and I in a joint article, let’s make the argument to the DSM that this pathology is an attachment-trauma pathology that belongs in the Trauma and Stressor-Related section of the DSM.  In doing that, we then have a specific committee we’re targeting for support – we are forming allies within the DSM process – a new Trauma and Stressors disorder – attachment trauma – the trans-generational transmission of attachment trauma.

We will argue that the diagnosis should be nearly identical to the prior DSM-IV TR diagnosis of a Shared Psychotic Disorder.  Nearly the same identical everything.  Look how closely that DSM-IV diagnosis mirrors the pathology of “parental alienation”:

DSM IV TR Shared Psychotic Disorder

Diagnostic indicator 3 of AB-PA is the encapsulated persecutory delusion.  What do you want to bet that we will find massive amounts of overlap in the psychological process that the Shared Psychotic Disorder people were looking at for the original DSM-IV disorder, and the pathology we’re looking at with AB-PA.

The DSM system has already acknowledged in the DSM-IV that the pathology of a shared delusion exists.  They acknowledge it in DSM-5 but diagnostically bury it.  All we’ll be asking for is that they re-establish the shared delusion – just like in the DSM-IV – as a primary diagnosis in the Trauma and Stressor-Related section, and we link our reasoning to the shared delusion created by the trans-generational transmission of attachment trauma.

We can bring all of the data sets from attachment theory, intersubjectivity, personality disorder pathology, and complex trauma to our argument.

You and I are old guys, Dr. Bernet.  This DSM battle is for the next generation of mental health warriors.  But you and I could lay out the vision for how that battle can be fought and won – the trans-generational transmission of attachment trauma creating a shared delusional disorder (Trauma and Stressor-Related section of the DSM – right alongside the other attachment-related disorders).

The world is changing, Dr. Bernet.  There are larger forces at work in this.  This isn’t Dr. Childress.  I’m merely the conduit for catalyzing the change.  The only credit to me is that I’m smart enough to recognize my role in what the universe wants to do.  Join with me in creating this changed world.  Trying to stop the change is like trying to hold back the ocean by putting up your hands to stop the waves from crashing on the shore.

Join me in defining the legacy and the future of our fight with the pathogen.  Trust me, Gardner doesn’t care about his model, he just wants us to defeat the malignancy of this pathogen.  Do you know what I think Gardner would say to me?  “Go for it, Dr. C.”  I am fully convinced that Gardner is supportive of my efforts with AB-PA.  He doesn’t care about “his” model, he just wants us to defeat the pathogen and solve the pathology.  He wants us to finish what he began, he wants us to defeat the pathogen.

But in the interesting way that the universe works, we will fulfill Gardner’s legacy without Gardner’s model.  Curious, isn’t it.  But it’s not surprising to me, because that’s the way things work sometimes.

We can fulfill his wishes using AB-PA.  When we bring the full power of scientifically established data sets to the solution, we can solve the pathology for all children and all families everywhere.

Join us, Dr. Bernet.  Join me.  Let’s write two collaborative articles.  One to reflect on history and the future, and one to define for future generations the path forward to achieve formal inclusion of the pathology into the DSM diagnostic system.

Craig Childress, Psy.D.
Clinical Psychologist, PSY 18857

From Dr. Bernet, join me. (posted 9/5/17)




5 thoughts on “Redux: Dr. Bernet, join me.”

  1. Thankyou for doing this Dr Childress Noone seems to care what the next generation problems these issues cause I am a grandmother caught up in it… my son raised his 2 children from babies. .. The legal bs has taken them from my son at kids ages 6 and 8 given them to mother ALL BECAUSE DAD REPEATED WHAT CHILDREN SAID.. NOTHING MORE!!! what would you do if your daughter said she had been touched on her private parts by mothers boyfriend. ..The court called dad and I lies and more…we were not the only ones to witness what the children have stated. .. 2014 to 2018 the mother has become friends with my other children and my ex husband only because a report did not go in our favour Now my son might see his kids supervised in maybe another 1yr…
    I am ashamed to be a women watching what is happening to my son FOR NO REASON OTHER THAN TRYING TO PROTECT HIS CHILDREN. …MY GOD THE LEGAL SYSTEM AND JUDGE’S NEED TO BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR WHAT THEY HAVE NOW DONE My son has been depressed and I believe he needs grief and truma help….

  2. Thankyou Dana, unfortunately I have prayed every night for all this not to be real “but it is” and now the mother has been given all the power to stop the children from ever seeing dad… she said it in court she hates his guts and wants him of the scene altogether AND THE JUDGE LET IT HAPPEN.. THAT TO ME SAYS MALIOUS STRAIGHT UP… DAD HAS NEVER SAID A BAD WORD ABOUT HER even though the judge knows about all the drugs and drinking now around these 2 children that dad had kept them away from. .. The court even knew the grandparents are daily drug users and guess who takes the kids to school and picks them up?? “Yep the grandmother ”
    This was why my son told her to leave the home because of the mothers drug use even the kids have shown how to make a bong…. and the judge did not care either…. so for 6 and 8 yrs the kids excelled at school were loved and we’ll looked after… NO NOTHING and the false lies took the kids away to this day the oldest one now says he is confused and the youngest still wants to come home with dad…..

  3. Thank you Dr. Childress. I think many people working with so-called moderate or mild child alienation do not understand the delusional state driving the alienator to the holocaust of obliterating the other parent even though that means poisoning the view any children have of that alienated parent. As you point out so well in ‘Foundations’ there is shock at the behaviour but this slides into a false explanation that the alienated parent must in some way have contributed something that provoked the alienation. What most of us alienated parents contributed was devoted parenting skills that our narcissist partners distorted perceptions deemed as inappropriate. Thanks for the work you are doing, it is spot on.

  4. Dr Childress, thank you for your always insightful and exceptionally well reasoned posts. I hope you also forward copies of the blog posts addressed to specific professionals directly to the relevant individual(s), so they are less likely to miss the opportunity to engage with you.

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