And while the case is raising some eyebrows, a tangled behind-the-scenes custody battle must be taken into account, said Montreal family law lawyer, Miriam Grassby.
"It's a very different situation than a child who might appear to not be be happy with the parent's decision and simply saying ‘I'm going to go court and I'm going to get what I want," she said. "And if in fact it's been portrayed that way, it's not putting in its complex context.
While the girl's father has full legal custody, pending a further court decision, the girl has been living with her mother, Ms. Fortin said. But while Ms. Beaudoin says the girl went to live with her mother when her father forbade her from going on the trip, Ms. Fortin contends that she was "kicked out" of her father's house over family tensions.
"In a situation like this where you're in contested custody proceedings, there's often a high level of conflict," said Ms. Grassby. "And one of the reasons that in Quebec that children have lawyers named for them is because the parents and the court recognizes that in high conflict situations it gives the child a safe place to first give their opinion, and get advice."
Corporal punishment in two-parent, middle-class families occurred weekly in 25%, was associated with the used of an object occasionally in 35% and half of the time in 17%, caused considerable pain at times in 12%, and inflicted lasting marks at times in 5%.
The more children are hit, the more anger they report as adults, the more they hit their own children when they are parents, the more likely they are to approve of hitting and to actually hit their spouses, and the greater their marital conflict.
Even controlling for baseline antisocial behaviour, the more 3- to 6-year-old children were hit, the worse their behaviour when assessed two years later.
Actions causing pain such as spanking can acquire a positive value rather than the intended adversive value.
Spanking of young children is hghly correlated with continued spanking of school and adolescent children. ... Parents who have relied on spanking do not seem to shift strategies when the risks of detrimental effects increase with developmental age.
Approximately 85% [of parents] expressed moderate to high anger, remorse, and agitation while punishing their children.
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