At Relationship Risk Solutions, men who have been referred by court to battering intervention meet in Beginning Conversations groups and share about their lives, Protection from Abuse orders (PFA), criminal charges, and much more. It is a goal of the program and of the court that they be accountable for something that they’ve done. Or perhaps how they’ve lived their lives generally. Accountability includes learning alternative ways of thinking and acting.
Accountability can be difficult. Even painful. Looking at yourself and acknowledging what you have done. Especially acknowledging what you have done deliberately.
True regret is never just a regret over consequence; it is a regret over motive.
– Mignon McLaughlin
In the group, everyone comes in with a toolbox of skills that manage to avoid accountability. The curriculum we use points out that minimization, denial, and blame are in that repertoire of tools they bring. We illustrate this by writing the word ACCOUNTABILITY on a whiteboard and covering it with large sheets of paper that we fill with examples of minimization, denial, and blame.