~from a conversation with Laurie Reid~
Because October is designated as domestic violence awareness month, we thought it would be appropriate this month to share part of a conversation between Haley Lynn Gray and Laurie Reid, LMFT, CAP, on the subject of domestic violence.
Domestic violence can be spouse to spouse, parent to child or child to parent violence. The latter is a very silent, yet violent form of domestic violence. The difference is that, by law, the parent is still legally obligated to care for the abuser child.
There were 6,100 youths arrested last year in the State of Florida for domestic violence.
The good news is that there are programs out there to deal with these cases.
Laurie Reid, one of Leadership Girl’s contributors, and founder of Breaking the Cycle Consulting, tells us why she got into this field…
The program came into place because I was working in Florida on these cases. Then I started getting called nationally, and now I am putting together programs for teenage to parent violence.
There was one case in Atlanta, Georgia, that made the news: Two teens drugged their parents so they could burn down the home and kill them. The mother escaped and was able to call 911.
Violence transcends all segments of society. I’ve been contacted by lower-class and upper-class families.
In one case, an LGBT family contacted me because the child was beating up the mother on a consistent basis.
In another case, a mother went to the doctor with fresh bruises. The nurse inquired about the source of the bruises, and after further questioning, it emerged that the child was abusing the mother, but the nurse told her it wasn’t “domestic violence” because the abuser was her son.
It’s because of stories like these that I offer coaching to help identify resources available in the community.
Not everyone has respite care in their communities or resources available. The parent frequently can’t protect the other children in the family from the abuser. Resources just aren’t available for this type of domestic violence situation.
Child to Parent violence is not well understood in our country. We don’t really hold the child responsible for their behaviors. We look at the parent as being somehow responsible for this abuse. And most law enforcement officers don’t know that this falls under family or domestic violence.
If I had a magical wand, I would:
1. Want individuals to understand their incredible self-worth and their potential for greatness as humans on this earth.
2. Change the mindset of others to hold sacred the family unit. We all come from family, and we all want to belong to a family. The younger years of what goes on, supporting our parents, and not shaming them is critical for building relationships as adults.
3. Funding for the entire family, not just part. Funding needs to come to support every member in the home.
One of my greatest rewards is to see the healing within a person, house, or family, and to see that I’m doing what’s right for the family.
For more information on child to parent violence:
Meet Laurie Reid:
Laurie Reid is a licensed family therapist and addiction professional with over 18 years of experience serving individuals, families and teens. Laurie is a speaker on the subject of wellness for agencies and organizations. She is also an Expert Witness for Family Law and Defense Attorneys on Child to Parent Violence cases. Laurie can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Twitter: @lauriereid147 and @parent_abuse