Working with denial in families dealing with child abuse : A scoping review of the resolutions approach

The Resolutions Approach (RA) is a solution-based intervention that has a unique way of dealing with parental denial of child abuse occurrences. The aim of this scoping review is to summarise knowledge about the benefits of the RA and identify areas for future research. After describing the theoretical background, the intervention steps are illustrated. Next, results of a systematic literature search on the effectiveness and other clinical benefits of the RA are presented. Finally, we provide suggestions for future research. Our search identified two published articles and one dissertation. Findings indicate that the RA might be useful in stopping child abuse and in improving cooperation between families and professionals. Parents experienced more control over their situation, and guardians perceived the method to be transparent. The RA is a well-described method that respectfully deals with families in which a lack of safety is observed. Future empirical research on the RA is necessary.


Practitioner points


  • The Resolutions Approach aims to stop and prevent child abuse in families when there are different perspectives on the abuse.
  • Our study reveals that there are signs of a clinical benefit of the RA in establishing a safe family environment for the child.
  • Families experienced more control over their situation, while guardians perceived the method to be transparent.
  • For most families participating in the RA, a supportive social network could be established.
Annemariek J. W. Sepers ; Marija Maric ; Paul A. Boelen ; Trudy T. M. Mooren | 2022
In: Journal of Family Therapy ; ISSN: 0163-4445
Online ahead of print DOI: 10.1111/1467-6427.12412
Casuistry, Child Abuse, Children, Denial, Effectiveness, Family Members, Interventions, Literature Review, Mental health, Methodology, Parents, Prevention, Professionals, Psychosocial support, Research Needs, Resolutions Approach (RA), Sexual Harassment, Social Support