Surviving the challenges of being an alienated mom or dad is not easy at all. Keeping your rationality, albeit your children abandoning all your attempts at keeping in touch, is devastating, and trying to be sensible in the arena of the family court is truly challenging. How can you feel normal when your family is broken and you are alienated from your kids? Can life for you ever become sane again?
Below are some essential pieces of advice for parents who have to cope with the heartbreaking realm of parental alienation.
Surviving Amidst Parental Alienation
Move forward mentally and emotionally. Do not focus on the broken relationship that you had with your alienated child or children. Move past the bitterness and rage. Don’t punish yourself. Concentrate on finding positivity every single day. Get some activity going—exercise or volunteer in your community. Start writing. And when your day is just not going the way you want it to, pray the serenity prayer. There is immeasurable power in it.
When you are an embattled parent dealing with parental alienation, you must feel alone, depressed, and broken. And if you’re struggling like most alienated parents, you might have the same question for the various mental health professionals and everyone else who attempts to provide comfort and advice: How? Where do I begin? Is there a manual for this?
Even the smartest advice for reliving connections with your alienated kid, such as regularly keeping in touch with your child through messages of love and care, would be pretty difficult. To make things worse, showing your outpouring love and acknowledgment to your child provides him with the courage he needs to keep his painful and unyielding position. He could say, “I can keep on treating you badly because I’m sure you adore me, and you’ll always think that it’s not my fault.” Keeping your sane self when a previously loved child does not accept your invitation or never talks to you on the phone is really tough work. Keeping the sanity in the world of the family courts is also tough, particularly if your ex-spouse does not pass up a chance to file legalities to prevent you from communicating with your child, eventually damaging your soul and your bank account.
One of the most effective coping strategies for parental alienation is likened to the saying about an individual who visits the doctor and tells him, “Doc, I get hurt when I do something like this,” and the doctor would always respond, “So why do you do that? Don’t do that!” For instance, it is a fact that you must keep on proving to your estranged child that you are the persistent loving parent that you were then and now. But there is nothing in the law that states you must confront your child’s hurtful rejection when things aren’t going your way, and the abandonment will really break you to pieces.
Rather, you can make a call to your child right after you’ve spoken to your boss who just made a compliment, or you get to finish a difficult project, or your favorite show featured the best actress. You still may get a no from your child, or he’ll hang up the phone and not talk to you, but it won’t hurt that much if you’ve already felt glad about something.
Change Your Mindset
If you’re depressed when you think about the days when you were bonding with your child, then you’ve got to change your mindset. There’s this woman I know who alters her negative thoughts with joyful recollections of her frequent trips to her doting grandmother. Often, she would get rid of negative memories by imagining that she is wading in the clear, blue waters. Regardless of where your thoughts will bring you, you may alter both your mindset and your whole day with these little mind vacations.
In CBT, reorganizing your thoughts entails altering something negative that you usually recite in your mind into a more affirmative statement. Say, for instance, based on your present circumstance, you may recite this silently, “My child is angry at me, and he doesn’t love me anymore.” Try changing this statement to, “My kid does love me and wishes to be with me again. It’s just that he’s doing his best to survive something that is hurtful for him as much as it is hurtful for me.”
On other days, thought replacements won’t do you any good, and you feel that you are not able to overcome the devastation and sadness of parental alienation. Just don’t fight it but negotiate with yourself. Permit yourself to feel sad for a time – just for a time – like before the day ends, or before heading to sleep. As a substitute for allowing yourself to feel sad and mourn the failure of keeping your child, commit to doing something after the deadline that would make you feel much better.
Ultimately, the best way to deal with parental alienation is to gain knowledge. Having a sufficient understanding of the subject will give you emotional strength and enable you to decide wisely for yourself and your child.