She accused her daughter's father of shocking abuse - but a magistrate says the mum's own childhood suffering might explain why.
She accused her daughter's father of shocking abuse - but a magistrate says the mum's own childhood suffering might explain why. MaxPixel's contributors

Mother's childhood trauma 'projected' in allegations

ABUSED as a child, a mother "projected" her trauma by accusing her daughter's father of sexual abuse, a magistrate says.

The case of "intergenerational trauma" has emerged from a Toowoomba Children's Court hearing.

The court refused to grant a protection order for a girl after police said allegations against her father were unfounded.

And in a newly-published judgment, Magistrate Kay Ryan found the mother had "intergenerational trauma".

This trauma happened when people suffered an "overwhelming" event they were unable to come to terms with, the magistrate said.

Sometimes, trauma was passed down to future generations.

And such intergenerational trauma could manifest in "behavioural problems, violence, harmful substance use and mental health issues," the magistrate added.

The mother had only sought counselling for her childhood suffering recently.

"Her historic childhood abuse combined with the miscarriage of a much-wanted child has projected her fears onto her daughter," the magistrate said after hearing from a psychologist.

The Director of Child Protection Litigation went to court alleging the girl suffered serious harm.

The director said the girl, whose name is suppressed, faced an unacceptable risk of sexual, physical and emotional abuse.

But a police investigation in July 2016 found it was "highly doubtful the offence occurred".

And a police audit in February this year again found no proof of the father committing any offences.

But the Department of Child Safety had already intervened with the family, asking for a temporary custody order.

The director wanted a one-year order that the father have no direct or indirect contact with his daughter, other with an authorised officer present.

Magistrate Ryan said the allegations against the father included sexual abuse.

But she was not satisfied the alleged abuse "occurred at all" and decided the girl had not suffered significant harm.

A psychologist assessed the father as "low risk" for sexual offending.

Magistrate Ryan said the girl had parents "able and willing to protect her from harm". -NewsRegional



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