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Therapy Group for Polygamous Women Continues

Therapy Group for Polygamous Women Continues

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- More than two years after a judge ordered the formation of a therapy group for plural wives as part of a custody case, the group continues to meet.

Third District Juvenile Court Judge Andrew Valdez requested the formation of such a group to help in the case involving the children of Heidi Mattingly and polygamist John Daniel Kingston.

That case was closed in December, but the one-of-a-kind therapy group remains.

Valdez says the idea came from his belief that therapeutic intervention needs to match the individual.

He says because Mattingly came from a closed society it was important to include former and current members from that culture in the court ordered therapy.

The group meets through the Family Support Center and is led by social worker Patricia Merkley.

Merkley has led six series of sessions so far, each drawing 10 or so women. The next group, which will meet for eight to 10 weeks, will begin in the fall.

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