Parental Alienation Syndrome PAS
Divorce Child Custody Laws and PAS
What is Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS)? Who gets custody of the child in a high conflict divorce? The term 'parental alienation syndrome' refers to complicated issues related to divorce & child custody. PAS issues and controlling parents are rampant within divorce courts!
Child residential custody laws do not prevent aggressive parenting and the most devastating cases often result in the alienation of affection toward one parent.
Parental Alienation Syndrome PAS refers to situations when one parent undertakes a deliberate campaign to turn the child against the other and undermine the child's love for that other parent, and the innocent child then becomes a victim. Divorcing parents often use their children as pawns to hurt the ex. PAS occurs when there's an intention not just to divorce the spouse, but to completely cut the other parent out of the equation with manipulation of the children involved.
Residential custody battles in high conflict divorce are often complicated by hostile aggressive parenting, false accusations and situations where one parent alienates or brainwashes a child against the other parent with no evidence of wrongdoing. Are YOU a parent whose prior relationship with your child has been damaged due to divorce? Know one? You likely do, even if you aren't aware of it.
Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) could be described as:
the emotional roller coaster of disbelief and a shattered heart experienced when a parent watches their adored and loved children fall prey to the hands of someone who hates their ex more than they love their own kids.
above image ~Magickal Graphics~
PAS is not the same as domestic abuse, yet certainly IS emotional abuse as brainwashing the mind of a child. Alarming numbers of innocent and loving parents have become separated from their own offspring after divorce.
Residential custody battles have become an easy target for the 'family court' system and for vindictive spouses who will use their own children as pawns in a battle to WIN. To win what? Read on... for it is complicated. Parent alienation syndrome (PAS) is very damaging yet not particularly well known nor understood.
Before arriving at this web page, ever hear of Parent Alienation Syndrome (PAS)?
POLL: Ever Heard of PAS? - Is the term PAS in reference to divorce child custody laws new to you?
PAS is a critical condition which drastically effects the lives of many many families worldwide, and yet many people have never even heard of it. Have YOU?
Dr. Reay's published research study demonstrates the correlation between levels of parental alienation and psychological distress of adults. Published on Sep 9, 2013
Dr. Kathleen Reay offers a tremendous amount of direction and tools to help parents and professionals deal with the ramifications of Parental Alienation.
What happens to children who are manipulated by one parent to turn against the other? Do these children ever figure it out and reconcile with their "lost" parent?
I pray that mine do, and yours too. Amen.
PAS and Correlations to Pychological Stress
New Book, "Parent Alienation After Divorce" - from author, Rick Nischalke who co-founded the organization "Keeping Families Connected"
Would a parent intentionally alienate their own child from the other parent? Why and how might they do that? Or is it possible that one might accuse an innocent parent to gain leverage in a child custody battle? Who should we believe? What is really going on?
This short read might help separate fact from fiction. Is Parental Alienation real? And is it child abuse?
Dr. Amy Baker Speaks about PAS - "The Ties that Bind" is specifically about Parental Alienation Syndrome PAS from an expert who knows more about this controvers
Dr. Amy Baker is an author, researcher & expert about Parental Alienation Syndrome PAS. Her book "The Ties that Bind" has received the highest acclaim among books published about this controversial subject. A link to her book appears below the video.
Dr. Baker's Book about PAS - "Breaking the Ties that Bind" is a collection of case studies from adults who were dragged throught the nightmare of parent alienat
This book is comprised of interviews of the KIDS (now adults) who were poisoned, not the parents who were either the alienator or the target parent.
Read what these people, who as children were manipulated into hating one of their parents, had to say once they "woke up" in actual quotes from numerous interviews.
Two important lessons learned from the quotes in book above:
1. The average length of time it took these kids to "wake up" was 20 years! (Many never do).
2. The overwhelming majority said they wished the targeted parent had tried harder to re-develop the relationship, regardless of how much they were "hated".
Gregory Mandell Show: Excellent Intro to PAS
Animosity happens in most divorces. However, about 85% of parents do eventually get past that initial tension and figure out custody issues through mediation and/or negotiation. The remaining 10-15% are those severe cases of alienation that involve a parent who is obsessed with having a child to love them alone.
Parental Alienation Syndrome PAS is a very serious issue that is actually gender neutral. The perpetrators are NOT all female as some think. Here are interviews with three women: a counselor, a police officer and the director of the film "Jake's Closet" which is based on a true story about PAS.
This 25 minute long video below is an excellent overview about PAS.
No Way Out But One - A Shocking new Documentary about PAS
This woman had proof that her and her children were being abused, yet family courts gave full custody to the abusive dad. She left the country with her kids and was granted asylum in the Netherlands. That is unfortunately NOT the happy ending to this shocking story.
Dr. Phil TV Show and PAS - Thumbs Down
Parental Alienation Syndrome PAS on TV Talk Shows: Editorial Review of Dr. Phil from the Amputated Mom
The Dr. Phil TV show has aired some episodes about parental alienation syndrome PAS. Television COULD be an effective route to educate the public about PAS, but the Dr. Phil Show used a strategy that may even do more harm than good.
A more effective and reasonable approach would be interviewing experts and authors about parent alienation. Those interviews reveal the real facts and hidden truths that tend to fly under the radar and make PAS such a complicated topic.
Editorial comments: Such 'he said - she said'' type of public bickering serves no purpose and seems to reveal Dr. Phil's own ignorance about the realities behind PAS. Those who want to learn real facts about parental alienation syndrome PAS might consider the many MUCH better sources than the Dr. Phil TV Show.
'Advice for Divorcing Parents' by Judge Michael Haas 2001
Minnesota Judge has blunt words for divorcing parents with kids who are dealing with child custody issues and parental alienation syndrome.
"Your children have come into this world because of the two of you. Perhaps you two made lousy choices as to whom you decided to be the other parent. If so, that is your problem and your fault.
No matter what you think of the other party-or what your family thinks of the other party-these children are one-half of each of you. Remember that, because every time you tell your child what an "idiot" his father is, or what a "fool" his mother is, or how bad the absent parent is, or what terrible things that person has done, you are telling the child half of him is bad.
That is an unforgivable thing to do to a child. That is not love. That is possession. If you do that to your children, you will destroy them as surely as if you had cut them into pieces, because that is what you are doing to their emotions.
I sincerely hope that you do not do that to your children. Think more about your children and less about yourselves, and make yours a selfless kind of love, not foolish or selfish, or your children will suffer."
..."These parents are generally articulate, resourceful, and competent in all other aspects of their lives - except in the realm of parenting. In fact, these individuals might easily be mistaken for ideal parents...because they profess love and concern for their children. What sets them apart from other dysfunctional parents is their overwhelming commitment to meeting their own needs first."— Dr. Reena Sommer
Many alienating parents will be smart enough to avoid actually calling the kid a traitor, yet will punish that child in other subtle ways and reward them for being an ally in equally subtle ways. This is brainwashing and very damaging to the child, who will feel confused and yet know on some level that loving the other parent will cause trouble.
It would be a different world if this perspective about children, parenting and custody were required reading for every family court judge, for every family law attorney and for every parent going through a divorce.
Divorce Poison - Take ACTION about PAS - The #1 Most HIGHLY Recommended Book for Alienated Parents suffering the painful process of divorce child custody laws
Being alienated as a parent is one of the most heart-wrenching experiences some will ever endure.
Maybe the worst is that feeling that there's nothing one can do in the face of such horror.
What makes this particular book so valuable is that Dr. Warshak takes each example of alienation and then gives you a TAKE ACTION assignment on how to best combat the attempts by your ex.
"Divorce Poison" is a classic that must be read by anyone who truly cares about children and the impact that divorce has on them. .
POLL: YOUR Take on the PAS Controversy?
Should PAS be officially classified as a mental health condition?
Parental Alienation Syndrome Laws
Controversy within family courts in part due to no established definition of PAS as a disorder in the DSM manual.
Opponents and critics of PAS argue that it does not exist in a large part because it does not appear in the Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV).
As with any condition, there is always a lag period between the time it was first identified and when it is fully embraced by the community at large (and included in such legal references). It took 95 years before Tourette's syndrome was listed in the DSM!
There are many examples of this such as: schizophrenia, cancer, attention deficit disorder, anorexia, dyslexia, HIV and AIDS. ALL of these conditions existed long before they were fully acknowledged by legal authorities and listed in references such as the DSM-IV named above. Also homosexuality was once described in the DSM as a deviant condition - but no longer.
Given that modern internet technology makes it possible for the transmissions of information and publication of research to occur much faster than ever before, one might expect that PAS will be included in legal references as a mental condition much more quickly than were the other conditions named above. Efforts are underway to classify PAS as an official mental health syndrome in the DSM manual.
However due to controversial nature of the term Parental Alienation Syndrome PAS and heavy resistance to change within the family court system, it could take years before that official listing and documentation is in place. Meanwhile, to discount the existence of PAS is to turn our backs on children who are being deprived of their right to love and be loved by both parents.
While there's broad agreement that PAS occurs and is usually triggered by a divorce and child-custody dispute, the bitter debate is about whether the condition should be formally classified as a mental health syndrome. What do YOU think? Vote below about these parent alienation laws.
Parental Alienation Syndrome PAS Controversy in the Courts
Gender wars, false accusations, lack of documentation in court manuals and lack of education about the syndrome among professionals keep the controversy alive.
The very term PAS has become controversial for many reasons:
* PAS knows no gender. Originally PAS was under attack from female groups as a male tactic used against mothers in high conflict divorce. However, both men and women are victims of PAS just as both men and women file false charges or commit acts of abuse.
* Some are false accusations. Just as there are accusers who file false charges of abuse, accusations of parent alienation are also being used falsely against innocent parents. This only makes PAS even more difficult to prove.
* Currently not a documented syndrome. While there are volumes of books and articles published regarding the subject of PAS, the family court system has yet to officially include PAS in their own accepted legal resources regarding mental disorders. Efforts are currently underway to change this, however that publication could take years to be updated.
* Lack of education among professionals involved. Many (most) professionals and decision-makers involved have not been properly educated about this syndrome, such as lawyers, judges, counselors & therapists, teachers and pediatricians. Therefore, they often make the very opposite recommendation than what might actually be in the best interest of the children involved.
"What Tigers Do" Film Based on Actual PAS Events - New film depicts actual events in a child residential custody battle.
This video is a promotional scene from "WHAT TIGERS DO," a recent feature about a child custody battle written & directed by Richmond Riedel.
In this intense and dramatic scene, a divorced father shows up on his bitter ex-wife's doorstep to pick up their 2 sons with a court order. Inspired by actual events, this film depicts the ugliness of parental alienation of a biological parent in custody battles.
Parental Alienation Laws and Child Support
Getting out of paying child support is one part of the alienating parent's personal victory, a sad shadow on divorce child custody laws.
Of the many questions people tend to ask about PAS, one of the most common is something like...'but WHY would any parent DO such a thing to their own child?'
Good question... especially given that this condition tends to be very insidious - under the radar sneaky and apparent only to those closely involved or have been educated about such a condition. Parents who would go do such damage are not very stable mentally in the first place, however they tend to be pros at creating a personal facade indicating otherwise, and will go to great lengths to impress others. Deep down it's only about THEM and only them - a narcissistic personality.
If one understands this person as a narcissist or sociopath as the frame of mind that created the problem, then the notion that a parent might make false accusations and even brainwash their own child in order to get out of paying child support is not that hard to fathom.
The custodial parent who pays child support will no longer have to pay it if they can convince the child (children) that the other parent is bad. The narcissist is a ME-ME-ME person, one who 'needs' the child (and everyone else) to adore them alone.
The sociopath is equally selfish, but also has no genuine conscience whatsoever, zero ability to feel basic human emotions such as empathy and compassion. They study people and are often quite skilled at the ACT - might be able to convince others they feel such emotions, but it's all a cunning act. Given such selfishness and complete disregard for others, getting out of child support is just another victory in the ME-ME-ME sickness.
For example, one alienated parent writes:
"After my ex left for his girlfriend, I managed to keep the house for five years somehow, but it was killing me financially to do so on my own. I'd sold most of my personal belongings on eBay to help pay the mortgage. Finally I had to let it foreclose and declare bankruptcy. Shortly afterward, my ex had me served with legal docs. No surprise that he wanted to get out of paying child support, I knew that was his ultimate goal all along. Given he had persuaded my sons to live with him, I had no reason to fight it. Yet even I was shocked that he had the nerve to demand things like that I would pay his attorney fees and even back-pay of child support. I was flat broke, bankrupt and homeless, for Pete's sake...and he KNEW it! He makes well over $100K. Sick, sick man!"
Duel: What's YOUR take about PAS?
Without clear evidence of wrongdoing on the part of the parent being alienated, then ... what?
Tensions over child custody are common in divorce. PAS is NOT about these usual tensions over custody. Instead PAS refers to situations when the issues escalate to the point where one parent is totally alienated with no logical reason, yet the child (children) have begun to act very hateful toward that parent when there once was a close and loving relationship.
Given that reality, what action shall the courts and other involved legal reps take toward this controversial issue? Many claim that parent alienation is criminal, child abuse at its worst! ...while others claim that evidence is not sufficient to make a custody decision at this time. What do YOU think?
What's YOUR Take about PAS?
What points should the family courts & all concerned consider heavily with regard to PAS?
No child should ever be alienated from a parent without any real evidence of wrongdoing.
PAS in Action: Sly Trickery - A not so funny cartoon... too true & too sad!
PAS From a Child's Point of View
The man in this video has suffered dearly, yet continues to stay focused in the fight for the well-being of his two sons who happen to be around the same ages as mine. His book "A Family's Heartbreak" appears below the video.
Michael Jeffries and Rick Nischalke created a wonderfully supportive website about PAS that gets rave reviews from this author as part of the solution! http://www.keepingfamiliesconnected.com
"If you ever doubted Parental Alienation exists or don't understand how it could happen, you need to see this parental alienation video. It will be life-changing! It portrays the emotional brainwashing that happens to a child during the parental alienation process." Rick Nischalke
A Family's Heartbreak" is a must read for anyone who suspects that PAS is working its way into his or her life.
A Family's Heartbreak - by Michael Jeffries
This author, Michael Jeffries, has used the trauma and tragedy of his own personal nightmare to show how what would seem unbelievable CAN actually occur.
His book is highly rated in that it quite vividly illustrates in detail just how far a close parent-child relationship can fall due to forced parent alienation.
A right on target perspective about what unbelievable nightmares can occur as a result of PAS.
This author also keeps an active blog of this same title. Link below.
Parentectomy - A Clever Book Title about Parental Alienation Syndrome PAS - Highly recommended by this amputated mom, this clever title provides the emotional s
If you want to learn more about PAS and how it is perpetrated, this book "Parentectomy" will enlighten you.
If you are caught in the grips of parental alienation and the devastating consequences it has on those entangled in it, this book will validate you, restore your confidence, and raise your spirits.
While it does FEEL as though we've had a 'parentectomy' we do still remain loving moms and dads. The challenge is parenting within a world that generally does not 'see' nor support this issue as critical.
"This book is an eye-opener for parents and professionals to witness the breakdown of parental bonds due to revenge. You will find comfort in this emotional roller coaster as a mother finds her way in the world while battling her ex to continue to be what she always was -- a mother."
--Chrissy Chrzanowski, Founder-Parental Alienation Hurts --PAHurts
Expect gender bias in family court. Men & women are treated differently. Be prepared to counteract this bias.
FILM: "Jake's Closet" about Child Custody Nightmares - If only the judges, lawyers and couselors were required to watch this heartwrenching film about PAS throu
"Jake’s Closet" delivers an unforgettably powerful suspense film seen through the eyes of a little boy coping with his parents' divorce. It takes you on a deeply moving journey as Jake painfully views the horrors of his parents’ escalating divorce. He finds himself haunted by something ominous lurking in his bedroom closet.
When Jake finally confronts the presence in his closet, it leads him to a chilling revelation in a climax you’ll never forget. Hidden inside the heart of this edge-of-your-seat haunting tale is a profound and long overdue film that reveals the loss of innocence and heart-wrenching pain suffered by children of high conflict divorce
This story details one mother's efforts to stop her ex husband from alienating her son from her ... and his ultimate death through suicide. She does everything she thinks is the right thing to do, but ultimately it did not work. She shares her painful hindsight advice to all parents who are going through
Parental Alienation Syndrome is real, this heart-wrenching story is proof.
"A Kidnapped Mind" True Story - Heartbreaking True Story of a Suicide as a Result of Parental Alienation Syndrome PAS
This true story is excruciatingly painful to read. With rare courage and brutal honesty, a mother and former Vancouver broadcaster Pamela Richardson tells the tragic tale of her son's suicide...
"A Kidnapped Mind" takes readers on a real life emotional roller-coaster ride. Its message is that whenever possible, former partners and the justice system should work together to ensure that children maintain strong and positive relationships with BOTH parents.
"Parental alienation is a series of seemingly innocent mis-communication, or concerns for the well-being of a child; and it is only when the dots are connected that you see the complete picture."— Pisarra, LA attorney
"Pluto" should be a standard part of the curriculum of co-parenting classes, parent education workshops, and anger management groups. Lawyers and therapists will want to hand out copies to clients to prevent children from becoming casualties of divorce and to help those at various stages of alienation to restore positive relationships with their parents."
--From The American Journal of Family Therapy
"Welcome Back Pluto" Film - Divorce Poisin - This unique film portrays PAS in a way designed for both parents and children affected by parent alienation.
Featuring Dr. Richard Warshak, author of Divorce Poison...
the first ever program designed for parents and children to watch together, this film is an essential resource for rejected, alienated, and estranged parents.
This moving DVD is an indispensable and welcome addition to the growing field of information about parental alienation of children.
...but what can I DO?
How can I help fight
against PAS?— You?
HOW to HELP Fight Against PAS
Silence is Violence! Speak UP! Get Parental Alienation Syndrome PAS out of the closet and into the media and minds of especially those closely involved.
How to Help? We're glad you asked. SPREAD THE WORD about PAS!
Do that in whatever way (s) you can. Here are just a few examples:
*E-mail a link to this web page or others about PAS to people you know.
*Post on facebook about PAS.
*Give a book to a friend, even a stranger, as a gift.
*Ask your local library to order some of the book titles listed here.
*If you have a web site or blog, consider publishing about PAS.
*Write a book review for your local paper or web site.
*Ask your favorite radio show to book the author as a guest.
*Own a shop or business, or know someone who does? Consider a display of books about PAS.
*Buy books and donate them to homeless shelters, prisons, rehabilitation and group homes.
*College students in psychology, counseling, social work or any mental health field might ask professors to incorporate parental alienation into their course overviews and put parental alienation books on their reading lists.
Counselors or therapists who are uninformed are unable to 'see' the abuse hidden behind a charming facade. This can and will enable the situation to only become worse.
"Children do not naturally lose interest in and become distant from their nonresidential parent simply by virtue of the absence of that parent.
Also, healthy and established parental relationships do not erode naturally of their own accord. They must be attacked."— Michael Bone and Michael Walsh, Florida Bar Journal, March 1999
'Joint Custody with a Jerk' - Excellent book to support those who are stuck in the tragedy of PAS nightmares with an uncooperative spouse in child custody.
An excellent book that reveals the horrors of parent alienation and offers specific suggestions regarding how to respond to this type of conflict.
Common Questions about Parental Alienation Syndrome PAS
Disbelief is a common reaction...how could this BE? Get educated and spread the word, because this disbelief reaction must be faced.
The basic questions most everyone ask about this controversial issue of PAS include:
1. How can he/she [the parent] DO that to their OWN child ?
2. Doesn't he/she realize how badly that child is being hurt?
3. Why can't (fill in the blank -- your attorney, the judge, the psychologist, the police) do anything to help?
These are questions any affected parent will ask, desperately looking for an answer. But these are also key questions professionals should ask, and often do NOT.
These question should open up a new, very important perspective. From a mental health viewpoint, consider that most often these questions relate to a parent who is often very highly educated, one that we'd expect to fully understand the dramatic, even lifelong consequences of destroying the relationship of the child with the other parent.
In such severe cases of parental alienation, the alienated parent will not develop any insight into what he or she is doing to the child, will not see that it is psychological abuse. Such a parent also will NOT see a mental health professional with a genuine desire of being helped, but will reject anyone who does not exactly support their own view. So conventional psychotherapy will not work. Therefore, the legal and mental health system fail to prevent child abuse by parental alienation with its serious long term consequences.
What Causes Parental Alienation Syndrome PAS?
Parent who alienate have serious unresolved personal issues.
"What causes a parent to want to damage the relationship of their own child with the other parent at their own child's expense? Intentions differ from one parent to the next, but psychologists have suggested the following as potential motivators:
An alienating parent may:
* have unresolved anger toward the other parent for perceived wrongs during the relationship and may be unable to separate those issues from parenting issues.
* have unresolved issues from their childhood, particularly in how they related to their own parents. He or she projects this onto the other parent (whether or not it's factually accurate).
* have a personality disorder, such as narcissism or paranoia. A narcissist is unable to empathize with the child's feelings or see the way their behavior is harming the child. Such personality disorders may also result in jealousy and/or extreme rage toward the other parent.
* be so insecure as to his or her own parenting skills that he or she projects those concerns onto the other parent, regardless of reality.
* be so wrapped up in their child's life that he or she has no separate identity. The child's relationship with the other parent is seen as a threat.
The Child and PAS
What causes a child to buy into the alienating parent's brainwashing?
The child may:
* Feel the need to protect a parent who's depressed, panicky or needy
* Want to avoid the anger or rejection of a dominant parent, who's also often the custodial parent
* Want to hold onto the parent the child is most afraid of losing, such as a parent who is self-absorbed or not very involved with the child."
PAS Alerts to Psychologists
Training about PAS and Narcissism is Critical to being in a position to support those who are being manipulated by PAS and divorce child custody laws.
Often what counselors see is very charming behavior from a well-spoken and professional adult. Narcissists tend to also be very accomplished liars, even to the point of being confused at the difference between truth and lies since putting on a show of being someone else becomes such a huge part of the personality. In order to recognize PAS, a therapist would need to see beyond the charming facade.
Maybe this client is wealthy or at least offers financial support and might very well hold a professional position. That's about money, but how much actual time does this person spend parenting? Take note of what is said and whether a client contradicts his or her own statements, which could very well be a red flag.
True story: One woman was finally able to get cooperation from her ex for counseling regarding custody and parenting issues in a high conflict divorce. However the therapist was totally duped by the charms of her ex and supported his lies. Counseling after only a few sessions and the mom eventually lost her sons to the manipulative and alienating dad. The therapist was totally blind to reality and actually supported his manipulation.
Prior to this experience, the very same man had actually attacked his wife inside a marriage counselor's office, and was referred to counseling for abuse. However he'd been very charming before that day in a different office, and so the therapist had no clue. This was years prior to the divorce and sessions regarding custody, yet repeated trips to counselors lacked understanding nor support about the actual reality of the situation.
If those involved in furthering the pain of PAS (judges, lawyers, family courts, therapists, etc.) had ever experienced it themselves, they'd likely be suicidal.
The ultimate ignorance is speaking out about issues you know nothing about.
Controlling Minds & High Conflict Divorce - Ever tried to walk two dogs at once and feel they are ripping you apart?
Courts Ignore Evidence of Domestic Violence and PAS
- PAS and Family Court Victims
PAS is usually carefully hidden behind a facade of charm. Yet there are times when evidence screams of wrongdoing, and still the courts allow it to continue. This is one of those stories.
How it Feels to be an Alienated Parent
Healing from the nightmare of PAS seems never-ending. Divorce child custody laws and the manipulation of family courts can be devastating.
"Each day I grieve and struggle with the loss of my sons. I feel like I just don't know how to get through it ... how not to throw down the rest of my life and cry out at the unfairness and horror of losing them in this way. But nobody died, and so people rarely understand. So I keep living and writing and shopping for groceries and paying the bills and trying to pretend I am not grieving every day, every hour... praying for them and wondering how they are doing and what maybe I ought to be doing that I'm not doing. I have to just tell myself to just STOP, stop even thinking of them in order to even function from day to day. They were such a HUGE part of me, live nearby and yet... they are gone. Birthdays and holidays come and go, and soon my first born son will graduate from high school. I want to share this and other milestones in the life of my heart."
"He can't hurt me much more than he already has done, yet he still tries now and then. Words cannot express the intense despair I feel to see the mind games he continues to play with my sons. I pray they'll one day escape his hold on them. They are older now and not around him much anymore, but he uses his money to manipulate them. He has married the girlfriend, no surprise for he'll always need some victim. She and I have never met. I know exactly why my ex doesn't want us to ever meet each other. Will it ever occur to her?"
The Effects of Family & Friends on PAS Pain
Could there be a PAS story in someone you know?
We all know people who've divorced and hear stories, but did you ever consider that maybe there's MUCH more to that divorce story than you had any idea? Those who buy a story that is not true often contribute to the problem, especially if they repeat it to others.
Some are quite clever in hiding the truth, and this is particularly true of parents who alienate. Those who buy the story only contribute to the problem.
For example, one dad tells family members and friends how his sons are free to see their mom anytime they like when this is not the case at all and hasn't been for years. Most believe his lies, especially those with no contact with the mom. The others know better.
Another example: Mom suddenly began receiving phone calls from friends and even business partners, concerned that she is an alcoholic. Dad planted the seed and it worked on many of them, who continued spreading this story. Fortunately, all close friends from the era of the marriage remain close to that mom now a decade later. The business partners are gone, and so is that business.
Assumptions of 'truth' only add to the pain. These kids never asked for their parents to divorce. nor do they want to be in the middle of an ugly war between their parents.
No matter how well you think you know a person, do not spread rumors. Without face-to-face personal contact with a person, any words spoken about them are rumors. Do not judge nor assume.
- Divorce Court & the Narcissist
Facing divorce from one with narcissistic personality disorder? Read this first.
Narcissistic Personality Disorder and Divorce - from the Huffington Post
Recent article delves below the surface of the kinds of games often played in courtrooms by those with narcissistic personality disorder.
Teenagers and PAS
While young children may be most vulnerable to manipulation, teenagers are easily manipulated too.
The child may also be manipulated by the alienating parent with money and privileges that the other parent would refuse to give. This tactic works especially well with teenagers. If dad will buy him a car and let him hang with his friends for extended periods of time regardless of grades and personal responsibility, this leaves an easy choice for a teenager wanting to escape the entire mess in the first place. Teens tend not to desire emotional closeness with their parents anymore, but money and privileges will almost always matter highly.
Comment from one mom of teenagers: "My ex bought my 17 year old son a car. At that time my son had failing grades in school, so I would not have agreed to this. A few months later my son was arrested for possession of drugs. Dad hired a lawyer to delete the charge. No communication with me about either event. Both actions were totally out of bounds in terms of our 'parenting agreement'. Yet he and his lawyers still got away with it."
Teenagers who are tangled inside the web of PAS may tend to emit a unique set of circumstances. They might be particularly prone to a sense of entitlement and at the same time have not much in the way of an emotional relationship with either parent. The alienating parent will often deliver a regular flow of money and privileges, which only increases dependency (and lack of maturity and responsible behavior).
A most chilling and thought-provoking look at how common sociopaths are in our society, estimated at one in every four people! The most alarming variable is a complete lack of conscience. Note that sociopaths are also often highly intelligent, and that they are quite skilled at the ACT of displaying behaviors that appear to represent compassion, empathy, etc. however a deeper look reveals this as just that, an ACT. Underneath there is no conscience whatsoever.
PAS and the Sociopath
Parents who inflict such pain on their own children are certainly selfish. That narcissism is evident as a key in understanding PAS. This book is not about Parental Alienation Syndrome, however it might take that insight about it a step further.
While narcissistic behaviors are certainly involved in PAS, the sociopath is one who has no conscience whatsoever. They live a life of inflicting pain with no genuine remorse feelings at all. They are cunning enough to ACT as though they feel such at times, but those actual emotions felt by a person with a conscience are deplete in a sociopath.
So then to the inevitable PAS question..."But HOW could a person DO this to their own children?"
If we understand this person as a sociopath, then that answer is simple - This person has no concience!