Ways Of Dealing With Parental Alienation During Divorce
Deciding on a parenting plan, child support, and the best way to co-parent can add a level of complexity to the divorce process. However, while it is understandable for emotions to run high when going through a divorce as a parent, it is crucial that divorcing parents minimize exposing their children to conflict and negative behaviors. Children can be adversely affected if they are exposed to such things. Specifically, for the well-being of children and legal reasons, it is vital for divorcing parents to do their best to prevent parental alienation.
That said, if you are going through a divorce and parental alienation is present, it’s crucial that you understand how to deal with the situation. Below, we discuss the meaning of parental alienation and ways of dealing with parental alienation during a divorce.
What Is Parental Alienation?
Parental alienation emerges when a child becomes extremely hostile and rejecting of one parent. Unfortunately, the impact of parental alienation on a child’s life can be devastating. Some common negative effects of parental alienation on children include;
- Loss of self-respect
- An impaired ability to establish and maintain meaningful relationships
- Educational problem
- Lowered self-image
During a divorce, a parent can use different strategies to achieve parental alienation. But some of the commonly used strategies include the following;
- Speaking negatively about the other parent in front of the child
- Interfering with the communication between the child and the other parent
- Talking about the divorce with the child
When it comes to determining if parental alienation is present, the following are some behaviors to look out for in your child;
- Your child expresses a relentless hatred toward you
- Your child’s beliefs are irrational
- Your child does not feel guilty about how they treat you
- Your child does not want to spend time with you
Ways of Dealing With Parental Alienation
If you are a parent going through a divorce and believe parental alienation is present, the following are some of the ways to approach the situation;
If you have noticed signs of parental alienation, you should avoid confronting your child about the other parent’s behavior. If you confront your child, it might only alienate them further. Instead of confronting your child, consider therapy for you and your child. Therapy can allow your child to explore their feelings.
However, you should keep in mind that your child may be unwilling to try therapy. If your child is unwilling to try therapy, you should avoid forcing it on them.
Do Not Reciprocate Parental Alienation
While it is painful to be the parent on the receiving end, you should do your best to avoid trying to ruin the relationship between your child and the other parent. If you try to do this, it can worsen the situation and result in legal consequences.
Consult an Attorney
If you are a parent going through a divorce and believe parental alienation is present, consult a qualified family attorney as soon as possible. An attorney can help you evaluate your legal options and determine how to pursue the best outcome.
Consider Exploring Legal Avenues
Sometimes the court is the right avenue for addressing cases of parental alienation. The court may issue certain remedies, such as ordering family therapy. An attorney can help you determine if going to court is the right avenue to address parental alienation.
Contact an Orlando Family Lawyer