Recommended Assessment Protocol

“The narcissist as a child, when faced with this same dilemma of having to bond to a frightening attachment figure (which creates the core disorganized attachment), chose to avoid bonding to the frightening attachment figure, which created the anxious-avoidant overtones to the fundamentally disorganized attachment. The narcissist sacrificed intimacy for safety. This allowed the narcissistic personality to structure at a more stable level because there is less anxiety fragmenting the personality formation, but the sacrifice of intimacy leaves the core personality empty inside – there is no core self-structure to the narcissistic personality. Instead, at their core, the narcissistic personality experiences a profound emptiness created by the absence of psychological intimacy during childhood, an emptiness they try to fill through the “narcissistic supply” of social adulation and grandiose self-opinion.”

Dr. Craig Childress: Attachment Based "Parental Alienation" (AB-PA)

I’ve recently been working with several attorneys as an expert consultant regarding their cases of “parental alienation.”  In this capacity as an expert consultant, I developed a generic letter that the attorney, or their client, could provide to the involved mental health professionals describing the pathology of concern and my recommended assessment protocol.

This generic letter may be of use to other targeted parents and to attorneys representing them, so I have posted it to my website:

Recommended Assessment Protocol

I am appending to this blog post the content of this letter which describes my recommended assessment protocol :


Re:  Standard Recommended Assessment Protocol

I have provided professional-to-professional consultation with therapists and child custody evaluators regarding an attachment-based formulation for the pathology traditionally called “parental alienation” surrounding divorce (AB-PA: attachment-based “parental alienation”).  In addition to discussing the nature and development of the family pathology of AB-PA, I recommend a specific…

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