Understanding violence as a parenting choice
Fathers who are controlling and violent towards their partner may adopt certain parenting styles that place children at risk. When assessing risk to a child, it is essential to assess his parenting practices and not just his violence towards the mother.
Even if he stops using violence towards his partner, his parenting practices may still hurt the children.
It is also important not to separate his violence from his parenting — domestic violence is a parenting choice. It is not possible to be ‘a good dad’ when perpetrating domestic violence.
Refer to the resource below to learn more about interventions with fathers:
‘Well, when we moved up to live with him, like there was a lot of rules. I couldn’t play out in the garden … I don’t really know why there was a lot of rules, and if we were sporting [having fun playing] he’d go angry. There’d be fights a lot of the time, but other days he’d be nice and all, but he kinda changed a lot of the time.’
Hazel, 10- years- old, remembers in 'Listening to children: Children’s stories of domestic violence (2007)'
Practice tool: Not valuing children wheel
This tool assists us to understand perpetrators’ patterns of behaviour and the impacts on the children, the non-offending parent and the functioning of the family.
Common parenting styles in violent men
|His parenting style||Examples|
|Disinterest, neglect and irresponsibility||
|Sabotaging the mother||
|Performing under scrutiny||
Bancroft & Silverman, 2011
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