Children’s views on contact with non-resident fathers in the context of domestic abuse
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The research was qualitative with separate in-depth interviews carried out with children and their resident mothers. A total of 18 children and 16 mothers participated. The age of child participants ranged from 8-14 years: 8 were boys and 10 were girls. The majority of the families identified as White Scottish, one family identified as Asian and one as Chinese. Families were recruited from domestic abuse support services in both the voluntary and statutory sectors: This helped identify children who had experienced domestic abuse, parental separation and contact, while also providing a supportive setting in which to conduct the research. Non-resident fathers of the child participants were not included in this research. Fathers’ perspectives are of course important in any debate on contact and domestic abuse. However, the decision to not include fathers was made so as not to undermine the safety of children and mothers, and in a bid to ensure that the research was not dominated by the parental dispute about contact.