Parental alienation is a serious matter that must be handled swiftly because it has a negative impact on the parent-child relationship. This is actually considered a form of child abuse because of the mental damage that it does to the child. The issue with this problem is that it isn’t always obvious.
The key to parental alienation is that one parent is taking steps to turn the child against the other parent. This could be blatant, such as specifically telling the child negative things about the other parent in an effort to get them to say that they don’t want anything to do with them. In less subtle cases, it could be things like making innuendos about the other parent.
Parental alienation is divided into three general categories.
- Mild cases involve a child who pushes back against one parent when the other is present, but that behavior stops when the child is alone with the alienated parent.
- Moderate cases have more intense attempts by the alienating parent, but the child will still enjoy the time they have with their other parent. They just won’t let the alienating parent know they love the other parent or that they have fun with them.
- Severe cases usually involve a complete shunning of the targeted parent. The child usually won’t have anything to do with the parent and some might go as far as saying they will defy the court order to spend time with that parent.
Parents who are being this type of behavior might need to turn to the court for help. It’s imperative that they get to enjoy the parenting time they have with their children.