Karen Woodall

Therapist and blogger on all things related to families and family separation

I am a therapist working with separated families and writer on all things concerned with family services in the UK. I co-wrote the Guide for Separated Families with my husband Nick and have worked with him for the last decade, most recently at the Family Separation Clinic, a specialist service for divorced and separated parents and their children in London. I blog regularly at karenwoodall.wordpress.com to a readership across the world on family separation, parental alienation, reform of family services and more. I live in London but spend much of my time all over the UK where I work with families both in and outside of the family courts.
Three Girls: The Risks Of The Teenage

Three Girls: The Risks Of The Teenage Years

Working as I do with social services, the lack of worth attached to these young girls is something that I recognise, sometimes the statutory focus on removal of babies at birth, rather than support being given where it is needed, can feel like eugenics without the sterilisation.
18/05/2017 11:25 BST
Power Snapping: The Psychology Of The Brexit

Power Snapping: The Psychology Of The Brexit Election

Ms May as our mother figure has given us the power to decide, she has made it clear it is our responsibility not hers. On a psychological level it is a master stroke leaving us with the decisions to make not her. The ball is now in our court, what we do next will affect generations to come.
19/04/2017 12:06 BST
The Trouble with

The Trouble with Boys

To fully meet the different needs of boys and girls it would require us to adjust the schooling system, not to locate the problem in the children themselves. We have understood that about girls needs in education, thanks to the feminist movement but who is working on behalf of boys to prevent them from being problematised?
20/07/2016 15:17 BST
Brexit and the Politics of

Brexit and the Politics of Alienation

The politics of alienation is a dangerous game, it is not based upon healthy informed debate but upon the drawing up of small truths which are then exploited and exaggerated to maximise the fear of consequences. My fear is that the the game which has been played with the minds of the people making a big decision in the UK this week, will leave us with consequences that we will be dealing with for many decades to come.
22/06/2016 12:17 BST
The Madonna Complex: What Not to Do in Post Separation

The Madonna Complex: What Not to Do in Post Separation Parenting

Madonna will miss her son but she can remain his mother if she understands that what is going on is not personal and not permanent, but part of his journey to adulthood. A state of being which lasts far longer than childhood and in which her role as his mother will form a place in his heart and mind forever.
16/03/2016 08:37 GMT
Going to

Going to DadsHouse

DadsHouse runs many projects but the most recent is particularly special because it helps dads who are homeless with temporary accommodation, which in turn gives them a chance to build relationships with their children.
26/01/2016 10:57 GMT

Rebel Rebel

The legacy David Bowie leaves is not in my experience, simply in his music but in his early open and youthful challenges to concepts of being male or female and the impact that had on a generation.
12/01/2016 16:43 GMT
Radical Acts of

Radical Acts of Equality

I observed a young Asian man, no more than about eighteen, arrive with a tiny baby. The baby was crying loudly and clearly needed feeding and as I watched the young man struggling with the bib and the bottle, I became suddenly aware of an absolute air of tension in the cafe.
27/12/2015 22:52 GMT
You Ain't No Muslim Bruv - How to Treat Alienation in Radicalised Young

You Ain't No Muslim Bruv - How to Treat Alienation in Radicalised Young People

As London stands on high alert, those of us who know how to work with alienated young people must link with those who know what Islam is really about and build circles within circles until these young people are surrounded, not by hatred but by love. Only then will our world become safer, only then will all of the children in the world get the safe childhood that protects them from becoming the sacrifices that feed this spiral of death and destruction.
07/12/2015 10:35 GMT
Disposable Dads and the Myth of the Modern

Disposable Dads and the Myth of the Modern Family

Dads are not welcome in post-separation family life, especially if they are going to cause trouble by wanting to actually parent their children. For those modern men who gave their all to fatherhood, the injustice of such a swift eviction from the lives of their children after separation, is a bewildering attack on their very sense of self.
05/11/2015 17:54 GMT