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Parental Alienation Syndrome
 

Parental Alienation Syndrome

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…….a burden that a child is forced to bear when one parent fails to recognize their child's strong need to love and be loved by the alienated parent.

…….a burden that a child is forced to bear when one parent fails to recognize their child's strong need to love and be loved by the alienated parent.

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    Parental Alienation Syndrome Parental Alienation Syndrome Presentation Transcript

    • The Parental Alienation Syndrome (P.A.S) …… .a burden that a child is forced to bear when one parent fails to recognize their child's strong need to love and be loved by the alienated parent. The HRC, Mumbai June 12 th , 2008
      • it robs children of the security provided by the bond they once shared with the targeted parent
      • it embeds in children’s minds falsehoods about the targeted parent that are injurious to their own psyche and their sense of self (i.e., "Mom/Dad never really loved you"; "Mom/Dad is dangerous"; "Mom/Dad has done inappropriate things to you").
      • the process of aligning children against the targeted parent often involves threats, lies, manipulations, deprivation and even physical abuse
      It is about loss, insecurity, fear, confusion, sadness, hopelessness and despair. Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • The Alienating Process –
      • feeling betrayed or rejected by the targeted parent revenge, jealousy, fear, insecurity, anger, money, using the children as pawns to get a better divorce settlement
      • Badmouthing the rejected parent, such as
      • Speaking negatively about a parent to, or in front of, the child.
      • Inaccurately or untruthfully telling the child about the rejected parent, or suggesting they are unsafe or dangerous.
      • Exaggerating minor flaws in the rejected parent.
      • Inappropriately confiding adult information with the child.
      • Interfering in a child’s contact with a rejected parent, such as Throwing out gifts and letters from the rejected parent.
      • Calling excessively during time with the rejected parent.
      • Early pickups or late drop offs for time with the rejected parent.
      • Forbidding any reference to, or photos of the rejected parent.
      • Scheduling activities that compete with time with the rejected parent.
      • Monitoring or forbidding communication or time with the rejected parent.
      Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • The Alienating Process :
      • alienating parent speaks badly or demeans the targeted parent directly to the children
      • the disparaging comments made by the alienating parent to their children about the targeted parent can be implicit ("I am not sure I will be able to afford to send you to camp because "Mom" or "Dad" does not realize how much you enjoy it") or explicit ("Mom/Dad" left us because he/she never cared enough about you to keep our family together").
      • The alienating parent speaks badly or demeans the targeted parent to others in the presence (or within audible distance) of the children.
      • The alienating parent discusses with the children the circumstances under which the marriage broke down and blames the targeted parent for its failure.
      • The alienating parent exposes the children to the details of the parents' ongoing conflict, financial problems and legal proceedings.
      • The alienating parent blames the targeted parent for changes in life style, any current hardships; his/her negative emotional state and inability to function as before and conveys this to the children.
      • Allegations of sexual, physical and emotional abuse of children are often made.
      • Alienated children come to know that in order to please the alienating parent, they must turn against the targeted parent.
      Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • Alienating Process With the Children –
      • Manipulating a child to reject a parent, such as
      • Withdrawing love, inducing guilt for having fun or feeling love toward a
      • rejected parent.
      • Undermining child’s relationship with the rejected parent, such as
      • Asking the child to spy on or keep secrets from the rejected parent.
      • Forcing the child to choose between parents.
      • Creating conflict between the child and the rejected parent.
      • Interrogating the child after time with a rejected parent.
      • Providing the child with inappropriate information about finances, marriage or divorce issues.
      • Accusing the rejected parent of causing emotional pain to the favoured parent that the child should
      • help to heal.
      • Giving the child parental decision making authority, ie whether to visit with the rejected parent.
      • Undermining the rejected parent’s role in the child’s life, such as
      • Refusing to provide the child’s information (medical, educational, etc.), to the rejected parent.
      • Not inviting/informing the rejected parent of important events. (awards, honors, graduations, etc)
      • Refusing to provide others with the rejected parent’s contact information.
      • Rewriting history to reduce a rejected parent’s role in the child’s life
      Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • A CHILD’S REACTIONS –
      • Express relentless, unambiguous hatred toward the rejected parent and their side of the family.
      • Obsessively parrots the favoured parent without regard for their own historical experiences.
      • Refuse to spend time, visit, or communicate with the rejected parent.
      • Hold negative beliefs about the rejected parent that are inconsequential, exaggerated, or unfounded in reality
      • May lack the capacity to feel guilty about inconsiderate or cruel behaviours toward the rejected parent, or to forgive any past conflicts.
      • The child feels the need to protect a parent who is depressed, anxious, or needy.
      • The child wants to avoid the anger or rejection of the alienating parent.
      • The child has unresolved feelings about the rejected parent and the divorce.
      Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • Consequences –
      • Have trouble trusting others
      • Have low self-esteem
      • Have difficulty in sustaining intimate relationships
      • Experience shame for hurting the rejected parent
      • Suffer from depression
      • Engage in substance abuse to relieve the pain of parental alienation
      • Are more likely to experience divorce
      • Are more likely to have difficulty with authority and the law
      • Experience the loss of their own children through parental
      • alienation
      Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • The Politics of Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (Version IV) or the DSM-IV
      Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • The Consequences of Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • Children who are exposed to the ongoing conflict and hostility of their parents suffer tremendously.
      • The guilt they experience when their parents' first separate, is exacerbated by the added stress of being made to feel that their love and attachment for one parent is contingent on their abandoning the other.
      • Although children are powerless to end the struggle between their parents', they come to believe that if they turn against one in favor of the other, the unhappiness they experience on an ongoing basis will also end.
      • And if the alienating process is at all successful, its long term consequences for children victimized by it may be even more profound.
      • The main concerns rest in their ability to form healthy and lasting intimate relationships with others as well as how it may negatively influence their self esteem, self concept and general outlook toward life in general.
      • Have trouble trusting others & suffer from low self-esteem
      • Have difficulty in sustaining intimate relationships for experiencing shame for hurting the rejected parent
      • Suffer from depression, & Engage in substance abuse to relieve the pain of parental alienation
      • Are more likely to experience divorce, Are more likely to have difficulty with authority and the law
      • Experience the loss of their own children through parental alienation
      Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • Things That DO NOT WORK -
      • WAITING - That means waiting for things to get better, waiting for the alienating parent to get over his or her upset or to become more reasonable, or waiting for the children to come around on their own.
      • NEGOTIATING - Alienating parents are not interested in negotiating because they will not consider anything that deviates from their own agenda.
      • MEDIATION - The process of mediation can only work if the parties involved enter into the process in good faith and with the purpose of finding a mutually agreeable solution based on compromise. The alienating parent is not interested in compromise anymore than he or she is interested in negotiations.
      • ATTEMPTS TO REASON WITH THE ALIENATING PARENT - Many targeted parents invest tremendous energy and time in attempts to convince the alienating parent that what they are doing is harmful and unfair to the children and themselves. This is a complete waste and in most cases, it actually makes things worse because it provides more opportunities to create conflict.
      • ATTEMPTS TO APPEASE THE ALIENATING PARENT - This can never happen since the alienating parent is driven by a desire to destroy the targeted parent.
      Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • Things That May HELP ALLEVIATE The Effects -
      • MAINTAIN CLEAR EMOTIONAL AND PHYSICAL BOUNDARIES - This will help protect against the influences of the alienating parent.
      • FOCUS ON ALTERING ONE'S OWN BEHAVIOR AND NOT THAT OF THE ALIENATING PARENT - When the targeted parent makes small changes such as not accepting phone calls from the alienating parent, that in itself may help mediate some of their negatives influences.
      • STOP FEELING INTIMIDATED BY THE ALIENATING PARENT - The alienating parent gets their power from frightening, threatening and intimidating the targeted parent.
      • BECOME PROACTIVE RATHER THAN REACTIVE TO THE ALIENATING PARENT'S BEHAVIOR - Many targeted parents invest tremendous energy and time in attempts to convince the alienating parent that what they are doing is harmful and unfair to the children and themselves. This is a complete waste and in most cases, it actually makes things worse because it provides more opportunities to create conflict.
      • KEEP BEING A PARENT - Do not succumb to pressures to overlook children's poor or inappropriate behavior. Be loving, consistent and firm in your expectations of your children.
      • FOCUS ON YOUR OWN BEHAVIOR AND NOT THAT OF THE ALIENATING PARENT - By making changes in how you respond or react to the alienating parent, this in turn will have a direct impact on the alienating parent. For example, if you limit contact with the alienating parent and reframe from responding to threats and criticisms, this will limit the power the alienating parent will have.
      Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • Existence & Context –
      • PAS occurs in context with divorce
      • Rights of children are seldom thought
      • Corruption occurs in all levels within the family courts
      Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • WHAT CAN YOU DO IF YOUR CHILD IS BEING ALIENATED?
      • Do not argue or get defensive with your child, it creates bad feelings and is not likely to change his/her mind.
      • Let your child know that you have a different understanding of the situation and you would be willing to share your perspective if and when the child is interested.
      • Continue, in any possible way, to let the child know that he/she is loved.
      • Control your own anger and stay calm, even when hurt or frustrated.
      • Hold yourself to the highest possible standard of behaviour (do not give the alienating parent ammunition).
      • Work on improving your own parenting skills.
      • Always call/pick up the child at scheduled times, and be there even if you know the child won't be available.
      • Create positive experiences/memories with your child.
      • Provide mental health treatment for yourself and your child with professionals experienced with parental alienation.
      • Build a support network with friends, family, community resources, and support groups.
      • Become educated and help others involved with your child to learn more about parental alienation.
      • Attempt to work constructively with the other parent, either directly or through mediation.
      • Continue to attempt positive communication, on a regular basis, even if the child rejects or ignores it.
      Parental Alienation Syndrome
      • National Human Rights Commission
      • Faridkot House, Copernicus Marg,
      • New Delhi, PIN 110001
      • Telephone: 23384012 Fax No. 23384863
      • E-Mail: [email_address] , [email_address]
      • Website : http:// nhrc.nic.in /
      Parental Alienation Syndrome