Memories

Part 5 of 7 in the series Battered

The average age of remembering childhood incest is between 29 and 49. — FMSF Newsletter

Resistance to repressed (and suppressed) memories has manifested in the form of the False Memory Syndrome1 Foundation (FMSF). Intelligence experts sit on the FMSF board and send controversial experts like Elizabeth Loftus2 to testify in court that recollections of childhood abuse are ficticious despite including in its own newsletter that “studies report that the average age of remembering childhood incest is between 29 and 49.” 3 In many regions,4 this is too late to take legal action.

In “Debunking ‘false memory’ myths in sexual abuse cases” by Wendy J. Murphy, she addresses an issue likely to come up in “recovered memory” cases:

While public debate about so-called false memories has been raging for years, increasing numbers of trial and appellate court decisions involving this issue are just now being issued.… The typical defense strategy in these cases is to file pre-trial motions challenging the reliability, and hence admissibility, of expert testimony regarding recovered memories.… Reliability issues are also raised in motions to dismiss and for summary judgment.… Usually, the defense also seeks to offer its own “expert” testimony to counter the plaintiff’s scientific evidence that the mind can avoid or repress traumatic information and then recall it years later.… The plaintiff’s best approach is to anticipate this defense strategy and take the first step by filing a motion to exclude the defendant’s evidence. Plaintiffs should file this motion early to persuade the court that the defendant’s assets should be attached because the claim has merit.5


Related links

1 “False memory syndrome,” Wikipedia.org, at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_memory_syndrome (retrieved: 7 February 2009).

2 “Elizabeth Loftus,” Wikipedia.org, at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elizabeth_Loftus (retrieved: 7 February 2009); See also “Loftus’ Lustor Lost,” Orange County Weekly, http://www.ocweekly.com/2005-02-17/news/loftus-luster-lost/ (retrieved: 4 October 2011).

3 FMS Foundation Newsletter, Vol 2 No. 1, January 8, 1993, at http://www.fmsfonline.org/fmsf93.108.html (retrieved: 4 October 2011).

4 “Reform the Statutes of Limitation on Child Sexual Abuse,” SOL-Reform.com, at http://www.sol-reform.com/Pages/WhatIsSOL.html (retrieved: 4 October 2011).

5 Wendy J. Murphy, Debunking ‘false memory’ myths in sexual abuse cases”, November 1997, Trial, pp. 54-60, LeadershipCouncil.org, at http://www.leadershipcouncil.org/docs/murphy_fms.doc (retrieved: 4 October 2011).

Related video

“Violence — a family tradition | Robbyn Peters Bennett | TEDxBellingham,” TEDx Talks video at YouTube.com, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WLMJHdySgE8 (retrieved: 16 April 2016). (Show video)

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