Parental Alienation: Accuracy and the DSM-IV
“Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) is the standard classification of mental disorders used by mental health professionals in the United States and contains a listing of diagnostic criteria for every psychiatric disorder recognized by the U.S. healthcare system. The current edition, DSM-IV-TR, is used by professionals in a wide array of contexts, including psychiatrists and other physicians, psychologists, social workers, nurses, occupational and rehabilitation therapists, and counselors, as well as by clinicians and researchers of many different orientations (e.g., biological, psychodynamic, cognitive, behavioral, interpersonal, family/systems). It is used in both clinical settings (inpatient, outpatient, partial hospital, consultation-liaison, clinic, private practice, and primary care) as well as with community populations. In addition to supplying detailed descriptions of diagnostic criteria, DSM is also a necessary tool for collecting and communicating accurate public health statistics about the diagnosis of psychiatric disorders.”
This morning there was an article titled “Mental health professionals getting update on definitions” by Gary Rotstein from the Post-Gazette in Pittsburgh. This article misinterpreted a fact about parental alienation and the DSM. Mr. Rotstein wrote “There was consideration of hoarding this time as a mental health issue, but it failed to make it into the recommendations for full manual treatment. There are always lobbyists for parental alienation syndrome, but they did not win out this time either.”
According to the DSM website, Parental Alienation is still being considered as an addition to the DSM. There are many advocates and professionals that are exerting countless hours in establishing research that validates Parental Alienation would be a worthy addition to the DSM. It is believed that if Parental Alienation is entered into the DSM that it would be considered monumental in recognizing that parental alienation exists. There are numerous amounts of professionals in the mental health and judicial community that do not endorse parental alienation as a valid diagnosis. Parental Alienation is still a very controversial topic with professionals and the general public. It only hurts the efforts when there inaccurate reports to dismay the general masses who are in favor of the inclusion of Parental Alienation.
What can you do to help?
Dr. William Bernet is leading the effort to include Parental Alienation into the newest addition of the DSM-5, which is expected to be released in May 2013. Many parents and adult survivors have assisted in this effort by writing the leadership of the DSM and making them aware of the severity of Parental Alienation.
Any person who wishes to express his or her opinion about the inclusion of parental alienation in DSM-V may want to contact the following individuals:
|Dr. Kupfer is chair of theDSM-V Task Force||Dr. Regier is vice-chair of theDSM-V Task Force||Dr. Pine is chair of the DSM-VDisorders in Childhood andAdolescence Work Group|
|David J. Kupfer, M.D.Western Psychiatric Institute 3811 O’Hara StreetPittsburgh, PA 15213|| Darrel A. Regier, M.D.American Psychiatric Assn.1000 Wilson Blvd., Suite 1825Arlington, VA 22209-3901
|Daniel S. Pine, M.D.NIMH15K North Drive, MSC-2670Bethesda, MD 20892-2670|