Parental Alienation — A Continued Analysis
Last week we looked at symptoms of “parental alienation.” This week is a continuation of that subject by Douglas Darnell of Divorce Source, and we will look at different risk factors of parental alienation as well as the signs of recognizing a severely alienated child.
Parental Alienation: Risk Factors of Alienation:
During a separation or a divorce, there are a number of factors that can put you and your children at risk for parental alienation. Early recognition of these factors is important so you can intervene and protect your relationship with your children.
· Visits are withheld.
· Children are frequently not returned on time (later than a half-hour).
· A parent threatens to abduct the children.
· Suggestions of sexual, physical, and/or mental abuse.
· Alcohol or drug abuse.
· A parent having a severe mental disorder.
· A parent interferes with a reasonable number of phone calls.
· Children begin refusing to visit.
This list is not intended to be a list of symptoms, these are risk factors that you should be aware of that can lead to alienation.
Parental Alienation: Recognizing a Severely Alienated Child:
· They have a relentless hatred for/towards the targeted parent.
· They parrot the Obsessed Alienator.
· The child does not want to visit or spend any time with the targeted parent.
· Many of the child’s beliefs are enmeshed with the alienator.
· The beliefs are delusional and frequently irrational.
· They are not intimidated by the court.
· Frequently, their reasons are not based on personal experiences with the targeted parent but reflect what they are told by the Obsessed Alienator. They have difficulty making any differentiate between the two.
· The child has no ambivalence in his or her feelings; it’s all hatred with no ability to see the good.
· They have no capacity to feel guilty about how they behave towards the targeted parent or forgive any past indiscretions.
· They share the Obsessed Alienators cause. Together, they are in lockstep to denigrate the hated parent.
· The children’s obsessional hatred extends to the targeted parent’s extended family without any guilt or remorse.
· They can appear like normal healthy children until asked about the targeted parent that triggers their hatred.
Provided by Douglas Darnell, Ph.D.