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Supporting Separated Families Forums Mental Health Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy

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    What is Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy?

    Munchausen syndrome by proxy is a mental illness and a form of child abuse. The care-giver of a child, usually a Mother, either produces fake symptoms or causes real symptoms to falsify claims of the child being sick, thus seeking attention.

    What causes Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy?

    There is no exact cause that has been identified however, there has been research surrounding the roles of biological and psychological factors in its development. Some theories suggest:

    • A history of abuse or neglect as a child
    • The early loss of a parent

    These may be factors in MSP?s development. Some evidence also suggests:

    • Major stress (for example: marital problems) can trigger MSP.


    Have you ever experienced or witnessed MSP?

    What other factors do you think could lead to developing MSP?

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