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A guide to parental alienation

On Behalf of | Apr 22, 2024 | DIVORCE - Divorce |

Parental alienation involves the intentional or unintentional manipulation of a child at the center of a custody battle. This manipulation can negatively affect the parent-child relationship, as well as harm the child’s mental well-being.

Because the consequences of parental alienation can be very damaging, it is important for parents to develop strategies for overcoming these issues.

How alienation affects parents

For the parent experiencing alienation, the process is deeply painful and isolating. Being mistreated by one’s own child can lead to feelings of hopelessness. The loss of a bond with their child can also contribute to the emotional turmoil of divorce.

In addition to these effects, alienated parents may experience challenges with custody disputes. This uncertainty can also harm their relationship with their child going forward.

Possible effects of alienation on children

Conflicting loyalty between parents creates an internal conflict that leaves children feeling insecure. The child may develop resentful attitudes toward one parent, without fully understanding the reasons behind them. Over time, these feelings will cause strain within relationships.

Parental alienation can also affect a child’s ability to form healthy adult relationships. The erosion of trust within the family unit can cause prolonged psychological scars, impacting their overall well-being into adulthood.

Steps for addressing parental alienation

Recognizing the signs of parental alienation helps alleviate its often harmful effects. Parents should also consider counseling to foster an amicable co-parenting relationship. Encouraging the child to maintain a healthy relationship with both parents is another important step in addressing alienation.

Overall, parents should prioritize the child’s emotional well-being throughout the divorce process. By fostering an environment of mutual respect, parents can minimize the adverse effects of divorce.