Archive for the 'Parental Alienation' Category

Parental Abduction of Children

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

When one parent takes off with the children, it is one of the most horrible events that can occur. Parental abduction is psychological warfare and a brutal way of “getting back” at the other parent. Child abduction is both traumatizing for the parents but it can also cause damage in the children. For years ahead the child can suffer from mental disorders. It is considered child abuse. But there is hope within the law.

Parental abduction has been on the rise since the mid 1970’s. It occurs mostly during a divorce. The abductor may tell the children the other parent is dead or longer loves them. They may give them a new name and tell them to forget about their previous lives. Children can also be subjected to other forms of abuse such as sexual abuse, emotional abuse and physical abuse. The parent may deny them the care they need. The children are trained to distrust authorities and trained to hide their identities. The children can suffer from lies about the other parent and are forced to believe that the other parent did not love them. All of this has a terrible effect on the children. They suffer the worst kinds of pain. Children need their families and loving environments to grow properly. These children do not receive this sort of life but instead one with the belief that all relationships are doomed to a short time. They can suffer from depression and social anxieties.

The Law can help prevent child abductions from happening. If you believe your spouse can carry out the abduction of your children you should contact the proper authorities’ as soon as you can. If your spouse has threatened to take your children or has before you should call the authorities. If your spouse has taken your children, call the police immediately. Give them pictures of you children and tell them everything you know. If you have any idea of where you spouse may have taken your children tell them. Many times an amber alert can be put out where the abduction will be broadcast on televisions and on many websites. All of the information that you provide can help the police in finding your children and the chances of your children coming home are much better.

When your children are found, your spouse will be arrested and charged with kidnapping. You should take your children to counseling and work with a lot of psychologists. They can assure you children’s future mental and emotional health.

Remain calm during this time and surround yourself with close family and friends. Be strong for you children and be honest with the police. If you could think of anything that could help them find your children tell them!

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Hague Convention (On the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction)

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

The Hague Convention is a group of articles that help out countries in the case of a child getting abducted.  All the countries that have ratified the convention have agreed that they will work together to bring the child back.  A short definition of the convention is that if a child is abducted and taken out of the country to another that is involved with this convention then they will work together in retrieving the child.  This convention was put forth because the well being of a child is more important that all others. 

An example would be if a child is abducted from the United States and is then taken to Ireland.  The officials in the United States would gain the help of the Irish government and work with them in retrieving the child.  That is a brief telling of the operations; the Hague Convention is actually very complex and long.  There are many conventions like this one that most people don’t even know exist.  The conventions also make all countries involved respect and follow the custody laws of the nation that is inquiring about their help.  So if a child from Israel is abducted and taken to the United States, then we will respect their custody laws and help them in that way. 

The convention also helps if a child is taken into custody of a government other than its own as long as the child won’t be harmed and will be put into good care.  If a child from another country to taken to the United Sates for example, then the two countries that have signed the convention will work together to decide what is best for the child.  They can decide that if the original country is at war or in extreme poverty that the best interest for the child is to remain in the United States.

The opposite of this is like the case of Elian Gonzalez.  Cuba hasn’t signed the convention and thus the United States has no rights other than to send the child back under international law.  Even if the United States thought that the best course of action would be to keep him in custody, they didn’t have the rights to do that.  Even if Elian would’ve wanted to stay and the Cubans thought it best for him to stay, since his dad was in Cuba and had the rights to him, he would’ve got sent back no matter what.

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What Can A Court Do About PAS?

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

Since it may be hard for a judge to see that Parental Alienation Syndrome is behind all the problems it can be a very hard decision on the part of the court to do much in order to prevent it from happening. Many times, judges get tired of seeing the same couples in court repeatedly fighting over visitation rights and custody of their children.

Ways in which the court can stop PAS from becoming a problem include:

* Learn from documented cases how to identify high risk cases,

* recognize the symptoms of alienation in the early stages,
* intervene as soon as possible to correct the alienation,

* stop attorney’s from using continuances to keep parents from visiting their children,

* order parents and their children into therapy

* order a Guardian Ad Litem to observe custody compliance and report to the court anytime the order is being ignored

* Do not withhold visitation from a parent unless the children are in danger

* Allow both parents to speak in court

The sad part is the court usually does not recognize such behavior or believe that both parents should work it out for themselves. Most courts today expect both parents to make joint decisions regarding the well-being of their children, but this is not always possible.

Normally, before anything is done by the courts the situation becomes worse and the alienating parent becomes desperate and even unstable. When the court sees enough that, the court order for visitation is not being upheld or other officials begin to see the alienating parent as being out of line and not as true as thought, they will begin to agree with the alienated parent.

Many times, nothing is done at all until the alienation has gone as far as the children being removed from the state or even sometimes the country. The alienating parent can go as far as changing the identity of themselves, and their children. Then head off to another country hoping to keep the alienated parent away permanently.

If the alienating parent is to be stopped, the judge must agree to give fines, jail time or change custody in order to prevent the alienation to continue if all else has failed. This can also be a hard decision for the court since many times it is the parent with custody of the children that is trying to alienate the other parent. If the parent is put in jail or has fines to pay; would that be in the best interest of the children.

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Symptoms of PAS

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

Everyone in a divorce situation does have feelings that can be associated with PAS, but that does not mean that you are actually alienating your ex-spouse from your children. Learn to recognize the symptoms in yourself and in the parents.

The symptoms of PAS are:

* Allowing the children to decide if they wish to visit with the other parent. This can cause the children to believe that the other parent does not wish to see them.

* Explaining to the children all the aspects of the divorce. Many parents fall into this trap by saying they want to be honest with their children. The motive behind this action is to have the children thinking less of the other parent because it is their fault the divorce happened.

* Refusing to allow the children to bring along special items with them to the other parents home, such as a favorite teddy bear to sleep with, a favorite video game or other personal items.

* Not allowing the other parent information regarding medical records, school records, plays they may be a part of, or any other function that involves the children.

* One parent blaming the other for the divorce, financial problems, or anything else that affects the children’s lifestyle.

* Not being flexible in the visitation schedule and even allowing the children to be over-extended in activities, so they do not have the time to visit the other parent.

* Believing that if the other parent abused you, they will abuse the children.

* Asking the children which parent they would rather stay with, which home is better, who is more fun etc…; this should never be discussed with the children unless they ask to live with a certain parent.

* Children will be angry over the divorce, this is very normal, but when the anger remains and the children show signs of not forgiving, parental alienation may be your answer. If any one of the children makes statements in which they say they can not remember anything they like about you or any fun times you had together, then you had better beware.

* If any of the children can not give a reason for being angry with a parent or their reasons sound rehearsed.

* When one parent begins to have secrets or using certain words that mean other things when talking with the children.

* Using one or more of the children as a spy to learn what goes on while they are visiting.

* Listening in on the telephone conversations with the other parent.

These are just a few of the major symptoms of PAS. The main goal is to turn the children away from the
other parent and literally have them hating the other parent and not wishing to see them at all.

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Protecting Children from Alienation

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

Is it possible to protect your children from alienation? Since, this type of injustice has been going on throughout history without much notice; it is going to be an uphill battle to get the powers to be to listen.

The most important thing to remember is not to give up. If you are the parent that is being alienated, do not give up on your children. Your children need you for your love, affection and support.

One way in which this behavior can be nipped in the bud is by the courts recognizing this is a major problem affecting our society and taking the steps to ensure that it stops. Some of these steps may include:

* Joint custody, when possible, except in the cases of abuse when the children were the target.

* Stiffer penalties when visitation is withheld such as fines and jail time.

* Listen to parents that are being alienated.

* More laws regarding visitation rights.

The courts have always gone after parents that could not pay or would not pay child support. Some states have laws regarding child support that state that when a parent does not pay child support, they can lose any and all types of license, their visitation rights, and even their parental rights. These types of stiff laws regarding child support should also be implemented when it comes to visitation. Many times, child support payments were not made because of the custodial parents moving and alienating themselves and the children from the parent that is suppose to pay. Even in cases where the parent that was ordered to pay child support never received a copy of the divorce papers and they were not even filed until years after the divorce was final, parental rights were taken away for non-payment of child support.

If the courts are going to be so strong willed on child support payments because it is in the best interest of the children, then the laws should be just as stiff on parents that are refusing visitation rights. It is in the best interest of the children to have a healthy and happy relationship with both parents and the laws need to be changed to ensure this is done.

Talk with your attorney and laws makers, get involved and get laws changed regarding visitation rights. In order to protect our children against alienation, the law and the courts must protect the rights of parents and children when it comes to visitation and parental rights.

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Personality of Alienators

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

The personality of alienators is more a pattern of behavior that is seen in the parent that has custody than an overall personality trait. Most of the time, you will see and hear that these patterns and traits are explained with the mother being the one that is the alienator, but recently fathers are also being seen as the alienators. The alienator is either parent that wants to show that they are in control with their custodial rights.

Most of the time, the parent believes that you will put up with this behavior because you love your children; they are banking on your love for your children. They do not expect you to just walk away from what ever it is they are doing to alienate you from you children. The alienation process is not what you might expect. They do not just wake up one morning and decide to keep you and children away from one another. This can be a long process which includes many factors.

The personality and pattern usually begins the custodial parent giving you exact time to visit your children. If you are late only a couple of minutes you will pay in some way.
You will be given exact places you can take the children, how long you can be there and other mundane tasks to be sure that you time with the children is still under their control.

You will also get changes at the last minute so you will be unable to visit with your children, such as you take off this Saturday from work so you can have a great day with your children, they know this and use it against you. You will receive a phone call early Saturday morning about 30 minutes before your visitation time and the plans have changed to next Saturday, when you know you can not miss work again. If you try to change the visitation plans they will completely refuse and you will miss your visitation for that week.

On days that you are suppose to see your children; they will give the children other chooses to make, so the children will have to choose a trip to the amusement park or visiting the other parent. This is to show you that the children would rather do other things than spend time with you.

Gifts that you buy for your children will be duplicated by your ex-spouse, so the value of your gift is not what it use to be.
Gifts that you do give will be lost, hidden away or even thrown away.

Even in front of the children you, your family, your friends, your home, and just about anything else will not be good enough and they will find reasons that neither you nor your family should see the children.

Anything that will give the children a reason not to see you will be said and done even to the point of saying that you died.

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PAS Risk Factors

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

There are different risk factors associated with PAS, each parent and child is different, but anytime a parent and child are subjected to alienation there are problems that occur.

Your relationship with your children after your divorce is just as important as your relationship was with the children during your marriage. Nothing has changed between you and them; the only difference is that you are no longer married to the other parent. The children are or should be a very important part of your life and you should be a very important part of their world. But, we all do not live in a perfect world where divorced couples allow the other parent to spend as much with the children as they do, especially if they were granted sole custody of the children. Parental Alienation Syndrome is a real problem that can damage the relationship you once had with your children.

Risk factors from PAS include:

* More anger between the parents

* Fighting and arguing about visitation

* Secrets between the parent and the child

* Emotional abuse

* One parent threatening to abduct the children

* Alcohol or drug abuse for the parent that is being alienated

* Children not wishing to see the other parent

* Hatred of the other parent

* Alienation from other family members

* Changing names of the children, new identities for the custodial parent and the children

* Verbal and physical abuse from the children to the alienated parent

To understand how this works: the parents can begin to control the children in a type of brainwashing style think about this. When you and your spouse were together and were rearing your children you repeated some of the same safety measure over and over again until your children understood, such as look both ways before you cross the street. It took several times, but they began to do what you asked. They received praise, love, and affection for doing what you both thought was best. Well, now it is one parent versus the other parent. Your children do not want to choose, but when they hear the same instructions over and over again, they will begin to believe them even if this is true. This can cause some mental problems for the children. They may believe you do not love them, do not want them in your life, or a host of other trumped up ideas that have been hammered into their head.

The biggest risk factor with PAS is the end of your happy relationship with your children.

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Motivation for Alienation

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

Motivations for alienating a parent can be very complex or extremely simple. You may wonder why any one parent would desire to hurt their own children by keeping them away from the other parent and in that process turning them totally against the other parent. Their intentions differ from one parent to the next, but there are some common reasons.

Motivating factors can include:

* Revenge, for anything they think the other parent did during their marriage. This could be something as simple as not listening to them or having an affair. They cannot separate these events from parenting issues.

* This type of behavior can go back as far as into their own childhood, and how their own relationship was with their parents.

* A personality disorder such as narcissism or paranoia can be the culprit. With these types of disorders, they will not realize that they are harming their children and will not be able to feel any sympathy for their children’s feelings.

* Insecure feelings of how they can take care of the children.

* They may have the feeling that their life is their children and feel that if the other parent is a threat to their own identity. Being so engrossed in the lives of their children they feel like nothing is left if they lose them.

* They are afraid the other parent may turn the children against them.

* They are willing to share the love of the children with their ex-spouse for their own reasons.

* In cases of abuse, the parent may be worried that since they are no longer together, the abusive behavior maybe turned toward the children.

There are so many different reasons that one parent may wish to keep the other parent away from the children and it may just be that they can no longer stand that person. Even parents watch their children and have some problems with their children’s friends, schoolmates, etc…, and do their best as a couple to ensure their children are not around people they dislike for one reason or another. Therefore, when it comes to parents that are divorced an alienator can always come up with some reason for the other parent to be a bad influence on the children, such as

* They let them stay up pass their bedtime and then I have a hard time getting the children up for school.

* I do not approve of their new boyfriend/girlfriend.

* They drink in front of the children.

* Child support payments were late.

* Their home is in a bad part of town.

If an alienator wishes to keep the children and the other apart for whatever reason, they will find a way and will instill these thoughts, fears, and hatred onto their children.

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Dealing with an Alienator

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

If you find yourself as an alienated parent you are going to have all kinds of feelings mulling around inside. Some of your questions maybe, what did I do, and why are my children treating me so badly? These questions can turn into anger when you realize you did noting at all. Now, you must find a way to deal with the alienator without putting more space between you and your children.

The best ways in which to deal with an alienator are:

* Control your temper and your behavior

* Keep a log of everything that happens with exact details

* Always arrive on time to pick up your children, even if you know that they will not be able to come. I know this sounds ridiculous, but document the time, place, and reason the children were not there, or you could not visit with them. This will show the court that you are trying everything in your power to have a relationship with your children

* While you are spending time with your children talk about things that you did in the past together that were fun, always help them to remember the fun times without disagreeing with the other parent. Never talk about anything in a negative manner

* Never talk about the divorce or court with the children

* Do your best to not argue with your children or become defensive when they tell you things that are untrue.  Remember, they are also victims here and need your love and support to listen to them about their feelings. If they make remarks like “You never did anything with me.”, do not disagree, mention something you did do together. Reinforce the fun times you had with them.

* Take some parenting classes. This will give you some skills that will aid in communicating with your children and keeping your anger under control.

* If at all possible, seek counseling for your children. If you can get the children into counseling with a professional that understands PAS, then go yourself. Learn how to handle all that you are being through and how to counteract the problem.

* Do not go against any court order, which includes paying child support even if you are fighting to get visitation. The courts want you to uphold your end of supporting your children and consideration visitation a completely different area from child support.

* Never talk bad about your ex-souse in front of the children; they are hearing enough of this from the other parent.

* Never blame your child, they are being brainwashed. They still need your love, affection, devotion, and support.

* Go back to court to get your visitation rights.

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Character Traits of Alienated Children

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

Children can learn to alienate either parent whether the parent has custody or whether the parent is only seen on weekends. Whichever parent wishes to control the situation can bring on alienation tendencies in their children, the parent that only sees the children for the weekend can do just as much damage with alienation as the parent that has custody, it all begins with just a few words or gestures such as “well, I would love to see you more, but your father/mother will only allow me one day a week.” All of these types of things can begin the alienation process. After a child has been successfully alienated you will see traits that would not normally be in a child that is in a healthy relationship with both parents.

These traits include:

* An undying hatred of the alienated parent.

* The children will copy the parent that is alienating the other parent.

* When the children speak about the other parent they will use foul language.

* The children will not wish to visit or spend any time with the alienated parent.

* Will show anger toward the alienated parent .

* Will give weak or unclear reasons why they dislike the other parent.

* The children’s beliefs are the same as the parent or alienator.

* Will state that what they think and feel is their own thoughts and the alienating parent has nothing what so ever to do with the way in which they think or feel.

* They do not show any guilt toward the hurting of the alienated parent.

* The children’s beliefs are delusional and most of the time irrational.

* Refuses to have anything to do with the alienated parents family, including grandparents that they once loved visiting.

* They have no middle of the road feelings for the alienated parent, nothing but pure hatred.

* Children show no regard to the court orders.

* The children’s memories are things they have been told by the alienating parent and they can not distinguish between their own memories and what they have been told.

* They will defend the parent that is alienating the other parent at all costs.

* Will not even want to speak to the alienated parent on the telephone, receive gifts or have anything at all to do with the parent or any of their family.

Children that have been successfully alienated seem to be normal, happy and healthy children until you mention anything pertaining to the parent, who has been alienated, then you will automatically see a complete change in demeanor and attitude.

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