Synopses & Reviews
A tragic portrait of adolescents who kill their parents is revealed in this volume: these young people almost always kill out of desperation as they are almost always victims of severe child abuse, neglect and dysfunctional parenting.
Drawing upon her experience as a clinician, expert witness and scholar, the author asserts that a combination of interconnected problems creates the conditions for parricide, including: severe sexual, physical and//or verbal abuse of the child; escalating violence in the family; and increasing vulnerability of the child to stressors in the home.
This sensitive volume includes an examination of interventions that are effective in treating such children. Heide concludes that adolescent parricide offenders can be reintegrated into society through treatment, not imprisonment, and proposes ways in which the media and the educational system can help to prevent child abuse and parricide.
"Holt has delivered a thought-provoking and well-structured summary of the largely uncharted territory of adolescent-to-parent abuse."
"The abuse of parents by young people has until recently been a hidden topic. This book breaks new ground by describing the extent of the problem, and by providing a thoughtful review of the research, policy and practice in this area. The book includes resources for professionals as well as for parents themselves. I recommend this book as an outstanding text for all interested in families and in family dysfunction."
and#8220;Amanda Holt has produced a compelling and pioneering study of an issue that is often overlooked. She shows how parent abuse can be better understood and, by situating its dynamic of intimate violence within a wider social and cultural context, she shows why it must be addressed more effectively.and#8221;
and#8220;hugely informative and balanced . . . offers educators a range of options for integrating the topic.and#8221;
Although the book is about murder. Heide does not limit herself to purely individual or family-based analysis. She is interested in connecting all the factors which lead to these tragic situations, in good and bad parenting and in social reform. It is this breadth of analysis which makes the book so readable and so useful. --Judith Bevan in ACCO Child Psychology & Psychiatry Review This book is a compassionate examination of adolescent patricide offenders (APO's) in the United States of America. It could be commended to anyone interested in how children are initiated into society. --Joanna Adler, University of Kent at Canterbury Kathleen Heide's sensitive and important account of family life gone wrong examines the shocking phenomenon of adolescents who kill their parents. Using actual case studies and a careful analysis of FBI data, Kathleen M. Heide discusses the motivations and backgrounds of these troubled adolescents, and what emerges is a tragic portrait--the adolescent murderer is almost always a terrified victim of severe child abuse, neglect, and dysfunctional parenting who kills out of desperation. Drawing upon her skill and experience as a scholar, clinician, and expert witness, Heide asserts that a combination of five interconnected problems creates the conditions for parricide: The youth is raised in a chemically dependent or otherwise dysfunctional family; the child is severely abused sexually, physically, and/or verbally; violence in the child's family escalates; the youth becomes increasingly vulnerable to stressors in the home environment; and the child has ready access to a firearm. Why Kids Kill Parents begins with a foreword by notable criminologist Hans Toch, and concludes with an examination of types of intervention that are effective in treating severely abused children who kill their parents. Heide proposes ways in which the media and the educational system can prevent child abuse and parricide by fostering functional families and mitigating the effects of dysfunctional ones. Why Kids Kill Parents is essential reading for all those who care about the nurturing of children and families in today's society, as well as professionals in juvenile justice, criminology, law, mental health, education, and youth advocacy. Heide's book offers an integrative understanding of both the dysfunctional family and child who kills. Of particular interest to clinicians is the chapter on assessment. This volume is the most comprehensive resource found on children who kill. --Youth Violence The resolution of such questions as What is a just response to a parricide by an abused child?' is a societal one. Our society permits divergent ideas (and data) to surface and to compete for adoption. In such a system a scientist and clinician such as Kathleen Heide can play a precious role. The work summarized in Why Kids Kill Parents is a testament to this role. It is also a credit to its author, who cares about ameliorating suffering and reducing despair. --from the Foreword by Hans Toch Why Kids Kill Parents contains a goldmine of material for diverse theoretical and practical applications, from aggression theory and legal analysis to specific, practical suggestions for therapy. Kathleen Heide has produced a valuable resource that, I hope and expect, will become a model for similar investigations and serve as a foundation for rational policy development.--Carolyn Rebecca Block, Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority, Women & Criminal Justice Vol. 6 No. 2 1995 I have read Dr. Heide's book, Why Kids Kill Parents, and believe it is the best available book on the topic. . . . Unlike the other books on this topic, Why Kids Kill Parents indicates a comprehensive knowledge of the prior literature and of the frequency and pattern of juvenile homicide. No other book covers etiology and treatment. Dr. Heide is a scientist, advocate, and clinician, and her book reflects all these perspectives. --William Willbanks, Florida International University In an unprecedented fashion, Kathleen Heide offers comprehensive definitions of childhood maltreatment that delineate the nature and scope of various types of abuse and neglect, which the adolescent parricide offender endures in a family where violence is all too common an experience. . . . This book is a must-read for all professionals who are involved in the care of and in contact with children and adolescents. --Susan Crimmins, MSW, Clinical Social Worker and Researcher, Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice Vol. 9 No. 2 1993 It is easy to see why this book has captured a commendable degree of media attention. It is well-written, fascinating in fact, so it is extremely interesting to read. Underlying this is a crucial observation, that Kathleen Heide's work has been well-received within legal, clinical, and other professional circles--that it has affected and is likely to have further implications for the way that adolescent parricide offenders are handled by the courts. --Patricia Van Voorhis, Assistant Professor, University of Cincinnati
This is the first academic book to focus on adolescent-to-parent abuse. It discusses what we know about parentsandrsquo; experiences of this type of abuse and critically examines how it has been explained from psychological, sociological, and sociocultural perspectives. It also outlines how policy makers and practitioners can usefully respond to the problem. Written in an accessible style, Adolescent-to-Parent Abuse is an essential tool for academics, policy makers, and professionals with an interest in domestic violence and child protection.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 181-192) and index.
About the Author
Amanda Holtand#160;is senior lecturer in criminological psychology at the Institute of Criminal Justice Studies at the University of Portsmouth.
Table of Contents
List of figures, tables and boxes
Introduction: the problem of adolescent-to-parent abuse
1. Abuse in families: commonalities, connections and contexts
2. Experiences of parent abuse
3. Explaining parent abuse
4. Parents, children and power relations
5. Frontline service responses to parent abuse
6. Working with parent abuse
7. Adolescent-to-parent abuse: future directions for research, policy and practice
Resources for Practitioners, Researchers, and Parents
Appendix: Adolescent-to-parent abuse: initial assessment