Mail Online (UK) 21st September 2010
Well-educated parents who split up and wage war in court must not speak badly of each other in front of their children, Britain’s most senior family court judge has warned. In an attack on intelligent middle class parents, who he suggested were the worst culprits, Sir Nicholas Wall said separated couples were often ‘fighting the battles’ of their relationship while using their children as ‘both the battlefield and the ammunition’. The President of the Family Division of the High Court warned that for children there was ‘nothing worse’ than hearing their parents describe each other as ‘ogres’ while fighting for access. Children usually feel loyalty towards both parents, he argued, and hearing slurs made against each one ‘irredeemably damaged’ a child’s sense of self-worth.
Instead, parents should accept separation was ‘itself a serious failure of parenting’ and work together to keep the damage to a minimum, the judge said.