Fathers in Custody
We worked with a Dad who had a very difficult relationship with his son. He had been separated from his son and the mother from a very young age and had not lived with them as a family. His relationship with the mother had broken down and he had not developed a meaningful relationship with his son, now 14.
Dad had had a number of custodial sentences and had been in and out of prison for most of his teenage and adult life. His 14 year old son was now following the same path – with involvement in gangs and youth offending behaviour. The youth offending team knew that the father and son were struggling with their relationship, and the mother was also struggling. The challenge for Kith + Kin Training was to build a father / son relationship instead of a friendship so that Dad could set boundaries in a way that the son also felt supported.
Dad joined one of our small groups for fathers in custody. He met others with similar backgrounds which put him at ease, unlike in previous groups he had been part of where he had felt very much judged. The group was all male which allowed him to talk freely about his upbringing and get feedback from those around him. As a result, he was able to slowly build his relationship with his son.