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4-5-1997 Dr.richard Maxfeild Custody Evaluation

4-5-1997 Dr.richard Maxfeild Custody Evaluation

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Published by: Just Another Anonymom on Sep 27, 2010
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Richard B. Maxfield. Ph.D.
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c o p ie d 
EV -\LliA TIOi'iName:
Hal Richardson
a.n.d...C .'-::t!!.(!m 4::0W Sk~)
These parents were court ordered to involve themselves in a custody evalualion \\1th me.This evaluation concerns their eighteen month old daughter who current Iv resides withthe mother, with weekend visitation available to the falher. I met with Mr. Richardsonon June
and September
for indiVidual hour long diagnosticsessions. In addition I met with him for one hour \\lth his daughter on October 4.1996.I met with Ms. Dombrowski for a two hour consultation session on Julv 10, 1996, asecond two hour consultalion session on September 11,
and a one hour consultation \\ith her daughter on October 4.. 1996. In add ilion I administered the MMPI-ll to bothparents. Further, I have spoken WIth or received reports from Joel Nance, M.D., BernardNobo, MSW, Mrs. Barger, who is Claudine's current counselor, Ms. Fisher who is thechild's current day care provider In addition I have received and reviewed multiple faxesfrom Ms. Dombrowski, numerous police reports concerning the history of violence
this relationship and I have listened to and reViewed a taped telephone conversationprovided to me by
Richardson. That conversation was one between him and Ms.Dombrowski It is on the basis of the above contacts and inforrnation that 1come to myfindings and conclUSIOns.
This was an extraordinanly difficult evalualion to conduct. In part that difficulty arisesfrom the extreme violence whIch has been part of this relationship from nearly thebeginning of their relationship. Further. that difficulty arises. and perhaps pnmarily,from my opinion that neither member of this couple was forthright in their approach tome and to the evaluation. Though it is to be e:-;pected that any parent undergoing such anevaluation Will "put their best foot forward," my assessment of each member of thiScouple IS that they are prone to fabncation and to blamlOg the other for all. or nearlv all.of the problems
their relationship.
Q rr
muillple occasions
provided information~c1L\\:as.fr.a~k-and-boJdJ~_c.ontI.adjcloJ:y to the inforrnatlon that the other had~SortlOg out where the truth lav in those SltualionS was not posslblt:Each member of thiS couple descnbes their relationship as beginnIng impulsl\ely Eachof them descnbe it as "love at first sight." though they do not both use that verbalization.At the time that they met Mr. Richardson was mamed to hiS first ",ire Almo,tImmedlatelv upon meeting Ms DombrowskI he became intimately involved With herHe \ery qUick Iv. from hiS pOint of View, began to proVIde for her financlallv andemotional I, She descnbes herself as being "sauck olTher feet" by hiS "charrn."
" I
. i
; : 1 2 : ' : 0 1
K-\.••.••\';' '~.") I I
Hal Richardson
Clat.. ,I~ Dombrowski
Richard B. Maxfield. Ph.D.
As th~ir relationship deepen~d there b~;,!an a s~rious of vioknt interchanges. At least half dozen of those interchan!!es came to the attention of the police and on at least oneoccasion th~re were charg~s filed against bOlh of them. Mr. Richardson describes Ms.Dombrowski as extraordinarily moody. He tells me that she began the violence by"tearing up" a number of his possessions He lells me lhat he became violent in return asa matter of self defense. Ms. Dombrowski, on the other hand, describes herself as thevictim of the violence which, in her mind, was essentially unprovoked. She tells me thatshe needed to defend herself agair.st him and that whatever damage she might have doneto him or to his property was a result of her efforts of self defense. In reviewing thepolice reports of these various episodes it is impossible to sort out who did what to whomand in what order. Clearly, however, both members of the couple actively engaged inviolent behavior toward one another.Both members of thiS couple accuse the other of currenlly perpetuating the animositybetween them. Mr. Richardson, for his part, communieales that Ms. Dombrowskifrequenlly calls him. He says that she has called him at two and four in the morning andhas ridiculed him over some piece of current or past behavior. He tells me that shesounds drunk in the phone calls and he is able to hear the baby in the back~'Tound. He isfearful for the baby's safety at such times. For her part Ms. Dombrowski absolutelydenies placing any phone calls to Mr. Richardson. She tells me that it is he who callsher. She says that she feels threatened and harassed by him and wishes to haveabsolutely no contact \\ith him. Again, it is impossible for me to sort out the veracity of either one of these claims or counterclaims.The animosity between these parents ISsuch lhat the exchanges of their babY need tooccur in the presence of a third party. When I initiallv began the ~valuation Ihose~xchanges were taking place in a hospital in Salina with a social worker participatIng.Toward lhe end of the ~valua!ion process the exchanges were transferred to the Salinapolice department. Following one such interchange there was some sort of disturbanceb~twe~n Mr. Richardson and :-'Is. Dombrowski. Ms. Dombrowski communicales thatMr. Richardson followed her around Salina, that she w~nt back 
lhe police station toreport him for haraSSIng her and that the police "escorted him oul of town." ~Ir.Richardson l'ommunicates that he was simpl\' gettin;,! ;,!as for his Iruck. that Ms.Dombrowski drove by and that she made a false report
the police that he was haraSSingher and h~ ISd~eply offend~d that the police escorted him out of town. Again it isimpossible for me to understand what may have transpired and who may be at fault in theabove interchangeWhat is abundanlly ckar is Ihal II is Impo~slhk 
Ihese parents to (()-parc~1. Neither orthem can sa" a civil \\'ord aboul the other. Each
them has extraordinary anllllOSIlYloward the other. Ms. Dombrowski communlcat~s thaI she is deeplv ft:arful of Mr.
Hal Richardson
Cia .ne DombrowskIRichardson, nOling, for instance, that two membe,s of her Batte'Cd Women's Task ForceGroup have been murdered by their e:<-husband's or boyfriend's. She says, convincingly,that she is fearful for her life. How much that IS conscious exaggeration is unkno"'l110me.
M e.
Richardson communicates that Ms. Dombrowski, in his opinion. ispsychiatrically disturbed. unable to be trusted and .::\traordinarily manipulative. Hecommunicates that he cannot have a reasonable conversation with her as she is a "liar"who will distort the truth to her 0"11 ends. Currently there IS virtually no communicationbel\veen them in regard to their daughter. As noted above each of them says that theother one is making inappropriate and accusatory or threatening phone calls to the other,both, however, admit that they are unable to have any1hing approachIng a ciVIl discussionabout their daughter or her circumstance.Each member oftne couple accuses the other onc of having a problem WIth eitheralcohol or substances. Each of them denies the use of alcohol themselves. Myassumption and confirmed by reports of previous evaluators, is that each of them has haddiffieulty with the use of substances and/or alcohol in the past. Whether that is a currentproblem is unclear to me, though as noted they each deny those possible difficulties.There is little doubt that each member of this couplc has significant dit1iculties with theirimpulse controL Each of them involved themselves quite impulsively in thisrelationship. Further, each of them admit to interactions with the other during this periodof separation when there are, so far as I know, mutual restraining orders. Each of themspeaks ,~ithout thinking in their appointments ,0.th me. They provide information that iscontradictory to what the other one has said and what they have previouslycommunicated \vithoUl much, if any, awareness of having done that.Both members of thiS couple deny havIng problems with VIOlence that predated theircurrent relationship. However, there is a police report available on Ms. Dombrowski thatconcerns a violent interchange with a former bovfnend. She has an e:\planation for thatwhich she provides me in the consultation which completely. in her mind, exonerates herfrom responSibility. Mr. Richardson. despite Ms. Dombrowski's accusations to thecontrary. communicates thai violence was never a problem in his first marriage.However, he freely admits that he has had trouble with the law in the past and that he hasbeen in multiple fights. He provides the reasoning that he was alwavs coming tosomeone's defense who "'as unable to defend hIm or herself or that hc was simplyattacked in an unprovoked wav.There is little doubt that both members of this couple suffer from a sigT1lficant psychiatricdifficulties It seems quite Iikelv to me that each of them suffers from BorderlinePersonality Disorder In regard to that characterization Ms. Dombrowski hasdemonstrated a pattern of unstable and intense interpersonal relationships. SignificantImpulsivllV. affective Instability with ckar proneness to depression on the one Side andlrntabilitv or :Il1:\lelVon !he oth-:r She additional". has demonstrated Inte:lse andinappropriate anger. She dearlv has -:ngaged
dfons to avoid real or ImaginctJabandonment. In fact. her greatest fear in regard to IhlS custodv c"aluallon IS the

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