Parental Alienation – Finding Proofs

A strong family relationship requires a lot of effort. It doesn’t happen overnight. So when a family relationship crashes, members can expect an emotional resentment and harsh feelings that will soon lead to parental alienation. It is where one parent engages in the manipulation of children’s emotional aspect.

According to John M. Grohol, PsyD, “Parental alienation syndrome is a term coined by the late forensic psychiatrist Richard Gardner to describe a phenomenon he witnessed where children were being turned against one parent, usually as the result of a divorce or bitter custody battle.”

It is a tactic to convince kids that one parent is better than the other. That love and care get judged by what each parent tell the kids.

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Susan Heitler, PhD, gave a clear example of parental alienation, “A divorced father of a 12-year-old boy who lives primarily with his mother says that his son insists that he does not want any contact with his father: “If I have to see him even in a therapy session I will hurt myself!””

However, parental alienation that takes place in the family is somehow hard to prove.  Its signs are often invisible. One can quickly get away with it in court because proving it requires extensive observation, checking, and unbiased statements from children. So how can someone find proofs of parental alienation to win a case in court?

Recording Behavioral Patterns

Keeping a diary and writing everything out is one of the things people can do when they feel the presence of parental alienation. It serves as a record of anything that can happen in the house involving children. These include details of conversations and incidents with the other parent. However, it is significant to note that the written records from the accusations may be difficult to prove. The other parent may file a motion stating to change parenting plan. But as long as the parent starts gathering details of how much the other one spends time with the kids, there’s a possibility to state facts from a written journal. As long as it provides photographs, dated tickets, and even event or activity stamps, winning a case becomes achievable.

Taking note of any adjustments and a special request is also essential. Trying to use it to the other parent’s pushed boundaries in recurring parenting time is a great move. If communication is difficult, the parent can use the journal to keep all written communication. Saving copies of emails and texts are pieces of evidence too.

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Awareness Of Warning Signs

One way to determine parental alienation is through the process of observing children. Their behavior and attitude can show a clue or a pattern of how the negative approach takes place. It is vital that the parent must recognize the kids’ interests and emotional weakness as these are the target areas of the alienators. Most of the times, the alienator’s approach tend to harm the kids’ development by feeding them with lies and distractions. That is the reason why children somehow become aloof, agitated, and inconsistent with their decisions. People call the outcome as alienation syndrome where children’s behavior runs in an irregular pattern.

Also, a visible warning sign of parental alienation is when children refuse to visit the other parent and limit their spending time with him or her. There’s not enough reason that chains the refusal but the alienator supports the kids’ decision not to see or spend time with the other parent. It has something to do with brainwashing and manipulating.

According to Sharie Stines, PsyD, “The system is created as the alienating parent rewards the children when they say hostile or angry things about the targeted parent by encouraging and displaying “understanding” for the children’s negative feelings, when what should really be occurring is the children should be taught to respect the other parent.” Code words and signals also matter. The secretive behavior of children is the result of an instruction from the other party.

Children’s Confession

Talking to kids is one the best way to know parental alienation. That’s because information a parent can get can be in full details when kids choose to open up about it. If one can listen to what kids are trying to say, the parent can connect differently from the other. Besides, nothing can correctly determine if alienation is present not unless kids are going to witness on the actions. An alienator will input ideas on the kids’ head that will make them think the other parent is no longer loving or caring for them. So before children believe everything an alienator will tell them, the other parent should keep open communication with the children. It is to stop alienator from feeding ideas that soon damages both the kids’ emotional and psychological balance.

 

 

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As for the behavior, when children often parrot what the alienator says, it is a clear sign that there’s a parental alienation going on. That instead of kids explaining their sentiments and expressing their feelings, they’d instead choose to validate the alienator’s condition. There is also a consistent planting of thoughts about types of abuses that sometimes turns out to be just allegations. A parent must remember not to attempt or pry children to elicit potentially harmful information. That is because often thinking about significant events that are unnecessary may disrupt kids’ mental ability.

Parental alienation is an act of the other parent is trying to harm or distance the children from the other. So whenever one sees these signs, they have to make sure to immediately seek professional help before the condition gets worst and end up becoming a trauma. Both parents must understand that adult problems should not have to be the reason for children’s behavioral, psychological, and emotional dysfunction. Therefore, they need to realize their roles in children’s overall development.

5 Warning Signs Of Parental Alienation

 

 What Is Parental Alienation?

 

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Parental alienation is an intentional attempt of a parent to pull his/her children from the other parent, with the goal of destroying the other parent’s relationship with the children. According to John M Grohol, PsyD, “Its primary manifestation is the child’s campaign of denigration against a parent, a campaign that has no justification.”

This attempt is usually done for several reasons, one of which is to punish the other parent because of something he/she had done. Or it may be that the alienating parent has some kind of a mental illness that he or she does not want to face and does not want to deal with the situation rationally.

Also known as parentectomy, parental alienation typically progresses over time, and there are several distinct signs that are associated with the syndrome.

 

Warning Signs Of Parental Alienation Syndrome

  1. Encouraging Anger Toward Parent 2. When a mother wants to get even with his husband because of something he did, an example of alienation is her speaking ill about her husband directly to her kid or children. “In essence, the children are gaining acceptance from the narcissistic parent as they complain about the target parent,” wrote Sharie Stines, PsyD. She may blame their father for not being able to give them what they need because ‘your dad spent the family money on his new date.’ If the alienating parent couldn’t be more blunt, she/he would make a direct comment, such as, “Your dad/mom left us without trying to work things out with me.”

 

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Both statements are intended to make the child feel angry toward his other parent. The alienating parent obviously uses his/her child to cause pain to the other parent.

 

  1. Conveying Negative Messages About Parent 2. Without saying it directly, the alienator uses body languages or gestures that will make the child think badly of his other parent. For instance, when the child asks parent 1 if parent 2 is going to be home for the Holidays, and the alienator (parent 1) doesn’t say anything and just looks at the child sadly. Kids are smart and can easily sense something, even if they’re not told details. They also become more curious when gestures are shown to them, and he surely would know that look on her parent’s eyes. He would then think that parent 2 wouldn’t be there for the Holidays for some reason more important than him.

 

  1. Divulging Mature and Sensitive Details With The Kid. The legal issues of a separation or divorce are things that no child should deserve to know, and talking about these so the child will take sides (with the alienating parent) is an easy way to do it. This does not only push the child to think bad about the other parent, but he will most likely feel partly responsible for what happened to his parents.

 

  1. Refusal To Co-Parent. Despite the divorce, parents should talk about co-parenting reasonably, and this the alienating parent doesn’t do. Parent 1 refuses to do this, telling his child or children that he just wants peace and no fights between him and the other parent. This sends a negative message to the children, as they will think that the other parent is the reason why they can’t be a complete family because of his/her temper.

 

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  1. Accusing Parent 2 Of Abuse. This may be too way below the belt, but yes, some alienating parents will go as far as accusing the other parent of physically and mentally abusing them, which is the reason why their relationship did not work. If the children are still very young, they wouldn’t try to comprehend this and will immediately blame and be angry at the other parent.

 

In The End

No matter where we look at it, the children suffer the most from parental alienation. “Severely alienated children have little if anything positive to say about the targeted parent and often rewrite the history of their relationship with the targeted parent,” wrote Susan Heitler, PhD.

Choosing between two parents because of unresolved issues is quite difficult for them, especially when they’re still too young. Divorce and separation are two issues that can destroy the children’s future and their way of thinking. It is vital that parents be willing to commit to co-parenting to attend to the needs of their children first and foremost. Their lives should not be destroyed because of their parents’ misunderstanding.

 

Mental Health And New Mothers

Are you aware that the number of women who have reported signs and symptoms of post-partum depression has increased over the years? It means that many new mothers are experiencing some serious mental health problems. Because of this, it is essential to spread awareness on how women can overcome postpartum depression.

According to Suzanne Degges-White, PhD, “There isn’t a solid explanation for why some new mothers go from the blues to full-blown postpartum depression (PPD). The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has suggested that PPD is “likely to result from body, mind, and lifestyle factors combined.””

In this article, we are going to tackle the effective methods on how a new mom like you can accomplish the said goal.

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3 Ways To Promote Parental Alienation

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Upon deciding to start a family and get married, divorce is the last concept couples entertain in their thoughts. Frequently, couples are concern about the wedding and preparing for their future. However, whether people like it or not, divorce is a fact of life, and the incidence of divorce is quite common. It is normal to feel guilt, anger, and bitterness towards your spouse and life in general when undergoing a divorce process to the point of extracting or alienating the other parent from the child.

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Effects of Parentectomy To Children

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Divorce is frequently considered a significant life event. Statistics show that 40 to 50 percent of first marriages end up in divorce while succeeding unions have even higher chances of separation. It can affect not only the couples but most especially the children. Many children are deeply affected by the separation of their parents and its aftermath which can lead to different mental illnesses and suicidal tendencies individually if the divorce and custody were viewed as battles with winners and losers. Also, the effects of the divorce might be colossal if one or both parents are bitter and decides that removing the other parent from the child as a form of punishment.

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How Parents Plan To Impose Parentectomy

 

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The divorce affects not only the spouses but the children as well. More than anyone, it is the child who is significantly influenced by the situation most especially if they are in their formative years. More than the change of family dynamics, shattered expectations of a family and disruption of routines, it is the removal of a parent or significant family member in the child’s life due to divorce or legal separation.

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What Parentectomy Can Do To A Family

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Intentionally removing another parent in the child’s life is said to be one of the most unfortunate incidents in a child’s life. By nature, children look up to both of their parents for support financially, emotionally and physically and diminution of the presence of one parent can cripple the growth of the child and at the same time can lead to mental health problems. The removal of a parent in his/her child’s life is termed as parentectomy. It usually happens after a divorce or legal separation.  There are varied reasons for parentectomy but it is generally done by the primary caregiver parent or someone who has full custody of the child. “The end of a marriage typically unleashes a flood of emotions including anger, grief, anxiety and fear,” Lisa Herrick, PhD and co-authors wrote.

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Damaging Effects Of Parental Alienation On Children

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Separation – one of the leading causes of parental alienation. The separation can manifest physically or emotionally.

 

When there is parental alienation, it’s not the parents who suffer the most but the kids. Majority of the children who are part of a broken family would still hope that their parents would get along in the long run. According to Sharie Stines, PsyD, some families may undergo “Attachment-based parental alienation is a complex and potentially harmful dynamic whereby a parent manipulates their children to avoid, reject, and disdain their other parent. It can be viewed as a symptom of the narcissistic paradigm and is often of clinical concern regarding the child’s healthy development.” But it turns out it’s not as easy as they thought it would be. The worst part is, one of their parents is compelled to alienate the other in the eyes of their children.

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How To Prevent Social Media From Ruining Your Relationships

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According to numerous marriages, relationship counselors and sex therapists, sessions nowadays are filled with instances when social media hampers with the clients’ relationships. Examples of this interference with relationships: sharing social media passwords, checking personal messages from these accounts, searching past relationships through social media, being friends with exes in social media platform, etc. and obsessively thinking about suspicious but not incriminating activities of your partner. Experts share that the world’s social media market saturation is at its all-time high at any other era in the human history. It can be categorized as an uncharted territory which is bound to bring up new challenges for the people.

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