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Parental alienation is a child custody attack

On Behalf of | Mar 30, 2024 | Child Custody

Even in families where the parents’ marriage is intact, there can be relationship problems.  Kids and parents don’t always get along. Divorce can intensify the stress and sorrow associated with the situation. When one of the parents is intentionally causing child custody problems, daily life becomes a nightmare.  

Parental alienation is a phrase that refers to a parent’s systematic attempt to turn children against their other parent. Following a divorce, this type of scheme is often initiated as revenge for past marital hurts or because the parent in question is angry at the other one for filing for divorce. An ex is not allowed to intentionally impede the parent/child relationship of the other parent.  

Signs that a parent has a child custody problem involving parental alienation 

If a parent notices his or her children exhibiting any of the behaviors shown in the following list during or following divorce proceedings, it suggests that the other parent may be attempting parental alienation:  

  • Children used to have a close bond with the parent but are now acting as though they are consumed with hatred. 
  • Kids have been making derogatory (and often strange) comments about the parent, such as criticizing the parent’s appearance, eating habits or other personal habits. 
  • Children seem ungrateful, cold-hearted and rude when interacting with the parent.  
  • The kids believe the parent does not love them or that the parent blames them for the divorce.  
  • Kids refuse to speak with or see the parent.  

These are serious issues, all of which suggest parental alienation in a child custody case. The sad part is that children in these situations often experience severe emotional trauma and confusion. It can be difficult to heal.  

Parents must not be denied access to their kids 

In a Pennsylvania divorce, a judge might determine it necessary to restrict or prohibit visitation with the children. If that has not occurred, then both parents are entitled to always have access to their children. If one parent is denying access to the other, it would be wise for the alienated parent to address the matter in court.