How to Combat Parental Alienation

Managing relationships with divorced parents can be difficult for children of any age. Children may go through phases where they want to spend more time with one parent over the other. This happens just the same with married parents, and can feel compounded when both parents live in separate households. If your child says they don’t want to see you one weekend when you have visitation, it can hurt – but it’s not really cause for alarm.

It is a different case when a child always, without fail, sides with one parent over the other in seemingly normal circumstances. What happens when one parent is poisoning the mind of their child against the other parent? What happens when one parent has their child so emotionally dependent on them that they must follow them at all times? In South Carolina, this is called Parental Alienation, and it is a very serious issue.

An indication of Parental Alienation is when a child always agrees with one parent over the other. Another potential indicator is if a child never interacts with one parent unless the other is around. Parental Alienation could lead to resentment towards the affected parent or random accusations against them. Since Parental Alienation is so serious, it has consequences – and must be proven in court.

If there is true Parental Alienation at play, the child may lie to officials involved in order to maintain the affections of the alienating parent. This is why psychologists, experts, and agencies are involved in the process of diagnosing Parental Alienation. Agencies always want to believe the testimony of a child, so if it has gotten to the point where they are willing to lie to protect one parent over the other, it is no longer considered estrangement – it is considered child abuse.

To help prevent Parental Alienation, make sure you are staying connected to your child. Maintain a positive relationship with them so they are comfortable around you at all times. If you sense that Parental Alienation may be occurring, you can ask for an expert to be involved in examining the situation. If you choose to wait to address it, it is only going to get worse.

In South Carolina, Parental Alienation is not an issue that is taken lightly. If you think it is truly affecting your family, it is important to act on it sooner rather than later. For any legal help with your family matters, contact Cate & Brough today! It all starts with a conversation.

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Cate & Brough, P.A.

At Cate & Brough, we all have personal experience with family law and family court. We know more than just what the law says about your issue – we know what you are going through.

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