Parental Alienation Syndrome

Dawn - posted on 01/28/2009 ( 68 moms have responded )

188

30

21

PAS is very interesting to me. From the what I've read here, this is something many of our kids are experiencing. I found a good website on this its www.paskids.com.

The definition of PAS is:

"The parental alienation syndrome (PAS) is a disorder that arises primarily in the context of child-custody disputes. Its primary manifestation is the child's campaign of denigration against a parent, a campaign that has no justification. It results from the combination of a programming (brainwashing) parent's indoctrinations and the child's own contributions to the vilification of the target parent."

I believe that it is important to recognize what's going on within our children. Though we may not be able to stop the other parent from the PAS, we may be able to learn how to help the children deal with the poison.

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Erin - posted on 02/12/2009

205

9

8



THE FLORIDA BAR JOURNAL, VOL. 73, No. 3, MARCH 1999, p 44-48



 



Parental Alienation Syndrome:
How to Detect It and What to Do About It
 
by J. Michael Bone and Michael R. Walsh





Although parental alienation syndrome (PAS) is a familiar term, there is still a great deal of confusion and unclarity about its nature, dimensions, and, therefore, its detection.(2) Diagnosis of PAS is reserved for mental health professionals who come to the court in the form of expert witnesses. Diagnostic hallmarks usually are couched in clinical terms that remain vague and open to interpretation and, therefore. susceptible to argument pro and con by opposing experts. The phenomenon of one parent turning the child against the other parent is not a complicated concept, but historically it has been difficult to identify clearly. Consequently, cases involving PAS are heavily litigated, filled with accusations and counter accusations, and thus leave the court with an endless search for details that eventually evaporate into nothing other than rank hearsay. It is our experience that the PAS phenomenon leaves a trail that can be identified more effectively by removing the accusation hysteria, and looking ahead in another positive direction.



For the purpose of this article the authors are assuming a fair degree of familiarity with parental alienation syndrome on the part of the reader.(3) There are many good writings on PAS which the reader may wish to consult now or in the future for general information. Our focus here is much more narrow. Specifically, the goal is twofold. First we will describe four very specific criteria that can be used to identify potential PAS. In most instances, these criteria can be identified through the facts of the case, but also can be revealed by deposition or court testimony. Secondly, we wish to introduce the concept of "attempted" PAS; that is when the criteria of PAS are present, but the child is not successfully alienated from the absent parent. This phenomenon is still quite harmful and the fact of children not being alienated should not be viewed as neutral by the court.




















Any attempt at alienating the children from the other parent should be seen as a direct and willful violation of one of the prime duties of parenthood.










The criteria described below are fairly easy to identify separate and apart from the court file. When there is uncertainty about any of them, these criteria can be used to guide the attorney in the deposing of witnesses as well as in their examination in court.



Criteria I: Access and Contact Blocking



Criteria I involves the active blocking of access or contact between the child and the absent parent. The rationale used to justify it may well take many different forms. One of the most common is that of protection. It may be argued that the absent parent's parental judgment is inferior and, therefore, the child is much worse off from the visit. In extreme cases, this will take the form of allegations of child abuse, quite often sexual abuse. This will be addressed in more detail in Criteria II, but suffice it to say that often this is heard as a reason for visitation to be suspended or even terminated. On a more subtle and common level, an argument heard for the blocking of visitation is that seeing the absent parent is "unsettling" to the child, and that they need time "to adjust." The message here is that the absent parent is treated less like a key family member and more like an annoying acquaintance that the child must see at times. Over time, this pattern can have a seriously erosive effect on the child's relationship with the absent parent. An even more subtle expression of this is that the visitation is "inconvenient," thereby relegating it to the status of an errand or chore. Again the result is the erosion of the relationship between the child and the absent or "target" parent. One phenomenon often seen in this context is that any deviation from the schedule is used as a reason to cancel visitation entirely.



The common thread to all of these tactics is that one parent is superior and the other is not and, therefore, should be peripheral to the child's life. The alienating parent in these circumstances is acting inappropriately as a gatekeeper for the child to see the absent parent. When this occurs for periods of substantial time, the child is given the unspoken but clear message that one parent is senior to the other. Younger children are more vulnerable to this message and tend to take it uncritically; however, one can always detect elements of it echoed even into the teenage years. The important concept here is that each parent is given the responsibility to promote a positive relationship with the other parent. When this principle is violated in the context of blocking access on a consistent basis, one can assume that Criteria I has been, unmistakably identified.



Criteria II: Unfounded Abuse Allegations



The second criteria is related to false or unfounded accusations of abuse against the absent parent. The most strident expression of this is the false accusation of sexual abuse.(5) This is especially the situation with small children who are more vulnerable to the manipulations implied by such false allegations. When the record shows that even one report of such abuse is ruled as unfounded, the interviewer is well advised to look for other expressions of false accusations.



Other examples of this might be found in allegations of physical abuse that investigators later rule as being unfounded. Interestingly our experience has been that there are fewer false allegations of physical abuse than of other forms of abuse, presumably because physical abuse leaves visible evidence. It is, of course, much easier to falsely accuse someone of something that leaves no physical sign and has no third party witnesses.



A much more common expression of this pattern would be that of what would be termed emotional abuse. When false allegations of emotional abuse are leveled, one often finds that what is present is actually differing parental judgment that is being framed as "abusive" by the absent parent. For example, one parent may let a child stay up later at night than the other parent would, and this scheduling might be termed as being "abusive" or "detrimental" to the child. Or one parent might introduce a new "significant other" to the child before the other parent believes that they should and this might also be called "abusive" to the child. Alternatively one parent might enroll a child in an activity with which the other parent disagrees and this activity is, in actuality, a difference of parental opinion that is now described as being abusive in nature. These examples, as trivial as they seem individually, may be suggestive of a theme of treating parental difference in inappropriately subjective judgmental terms. If this theme is present, all manner of things can be described in ways that convey the message of abuse, either directly or indirectly. When this phenomenon occurs in literally thousands of different ways and times, each of which seems insignificant on its own, the emotional atmosphere that it creates carries a clearly alienating effect on the child.



Obviously, this type of acrimony is very common in dissolution actions but such conflict should not necessarily be mistaken or be taken as illustrative of the PAS syndrome; however, the criteria is clearly present and identifiable when the parent is eager to hurl abuse allegations, rather than being cautious, careful. and even reluctant to do so. This latter stance is more in keeping with the parent's responsibility to encourage and affirmatively support a relationship with the other parent. The responsible parent will only allege abuse after he or she has tried and failed to rationalize why the issue at hand is not abusive. Simply put, the responsible parent will give the other parent the benefit of the doubt when such allegations arise. He or she will, if anything, err on the side of denial, whereas the alienating parent will not miss an opportunity to accuse the other parent. When this theme is present in a clear and consistent way, this criteria for PAS is met.



Criteria III: Deterioration in Relationship Since Separation



The third of the criteria necessary for the detection of PAS is probably the least described or identified, but critically is one of the most important. It has to do with the existence of a positive relationship between the minor children and the now absent or nonresidential parent, prior to the marital separation; and a substantial deterioration, of it since then. Such a recognized decline does not occur on its own. It is, therefore, one of the most important indicators of the presence of alienation as well. as a full measure of its relative "success." By way of example, if a father had a good and involved relationship with the children prior to the separation, and a very distant one since, then one can only assume without explicit proof to the contrary that something caused it to change. If this father is clearly trying to maintain a positive relationship with the children through observance of visitation and other activities and the children do not want to see him or have him involved in their lives, then one can only speculate that an alienation process may have been in operation. 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. Therefore, any dramatic change in this area is virtually always an indicator of an alienation process that has had some success in the past.



Most notably, if a careful evaluation of the pre-separation parental relationship is not made, its omission creates an impression that the troubled or even alienated status that exists since is more or lees an accurate summary of what existed previously. Note that nothing could be further from the truth! An alienated or even partially or intermittently alienated relationship with the nonresidential parent and the children after the separation is more accurately a distortion of the real parental relationship in question. Its follow-through is often overlooked in the hysterical atmosphere that is often present in these cases. A careful practitioner well knows that a close examination is warranted and that it must be conducted with the utmost detail and scrutiny.



If this piece of the puzzle is left out, the consequences can be quite devastating for the survival of this relationship. Also, without this component, the court can be easily swayed into premature closure or fooled into thinking that the turmoil of the separation environment is representative of the true parent-child relationship. Once this ruling is made by the court, it is an exacting challenge to correct its perception.



In a separate but related issue, a word should be said about the use of experts. First, it must be understood that all mental health professionals are not aware of nor know how to treat the PAS phenomenon. In fact, when a mental health professional unfamiliar with PAS is called upon to make a recommendation about custody, access, or related issues, he or she potentially can do more harm than good. For example, if the psychologist fails to investigate the pre-separation relationship of the nonresidential parent and the children, he or she may very easily mistake the current acrimony in that relationship to be representative of it, and recommend that the children should have less visitation with that parent, obviously supporting the undiagnosed PAS that is still in progress. If that expert also fails to evaluate critically the abuse claims or the agenda of the claimant, they may be taken at face value and again potentially support the undiagnosed PAS. If that professional is not also sensitive to the subtleties of access and contact blocking as its motivator, he or she may potentially support it, thereby contributing to the PAS process. When these things occur, the mental health professional expert has actually become part of the PAS, albeit unwittingly. Alarmingly, this happens often. Suffice it to say, if PAS is suspected, the attorney should closely and carefully evaluate the mental health professional's investigation and conclusion. Failure to do so can cause irreparable harm to the case, and, ultimately to the children.



Criteria IV: Intense Fear Reaction by Children



The fourth criteria necessary for the detection of PAS is admittedly more psychological than the first three. It refers to an obvious fear reaction on the part of the children, of displeasing or disagreeing with the potentially alienating parent in regard to the absent or potential target parent. Simply put, an alienating parent operates by the adage, "My way or the highway." If the children disobey this directive, especially in expressing positive approval of the absent parent, the consequences can be very serious. It is not uncommon for an alienating parent to reject the child(ren), often telling him or her that they should go live with the target parent. When this does occur one often sees that this threat is not carried out, yet it operates more as a message of constant warning. The child, in effect, is put into a position of being the alienating parent's "agent'' and is continually being put through various loyalty tests. The important issue here is that the alienating patent thus forces the child to choose parents. This, of course, is in direct opposition to a child's emotional well being.



In order to fully appreciate this scenario, one must realize that the PAS process operates in a "fear based" environment. It is the installation of fear by the alienating parent to the minor children that is the fuel by which this pattern is driven; this fear taps into what psychoanalysis tell us is the most basic emotion inherent in human nature--the fear of abandonment. Children under these conditions live in a state of chronic upset and threat of reprisal. When the child does dare to defy the alienating parent, they quickly learn that there is a serious price to pay. Consequently, children who live such lives develop an acute sense of vigilance over displeasing the alienating parent. The sensitized observer can see this in visitation plans that suddenly change for no apparent reason. For example, when the appointed time approaches, the child suddenly changes his or her tune and begins to loudly protest a visit that was not previously complained about. It is in these instances that a court, once suspecting PAS must enforce in strict terms the visitation schedule which otherwise would not have occurred or would have been ignored.



The alienating parent can most often be found posturing bewilderment regarding the sudden change in their child's feelings about the visit. In fact, the alienating parent often will appear to be the one supporting visitation. This scenario is a very common one in PAS families. It is standard because it encapsulates and exposes, if only for an instant, the fear-based core of the alienation process. Another way to express this concept would be that whenever the child is given any significant choice in the visitation, he or she is put in the position to act out a loyalty to the alienating parent's wishes by refusing to have the visitation at all with the absent parent. Failure to do so opens the door for that child's being abandoned by the parent with whom the child lives the vast majority of the time. Children, under these circumstances, will simply not opt on their own far a free choice. The court must thus act expeditiously to protect them and employ a host of specific and available remedies.(6)



As a consequence of the foregoing, these children learn to manipulate. Children often play one parent against the other in an effort to gain some advantage. In the case of PAS, the same dynamic operates at more desperate level. No longer manipulating to gain advantage, these children learn to manipulate just to survive. They become expert beyond their years at reading the emotional environment, telling partial truths, and then telling out-and-out lies. One must, however, remember that these are survival strategies that they were forced to learn in order to keep peace at home and avoid emotional attack by the residential parent. Given this understanding, it is perhaps easier to see why children, in an effort to cope with this situation, often find it easier if they begin to internalize the alienating parent's perceptions of the absent parent and begin to echo these feelings. This is one of the most compelling and dramatic effects of PAS, that is, hearing a child vilifying the absent parent and joining the alienating parent in such attacks. If one is not sensitive to the "fear-based" core at the heart of this, it is difficult not to take the child's protests at face value. This, of course, is compounded when the expert is also not sensitive to this powerful fear component, and believes that the child is voicing his or her own inner feelings in endorsing the "no visitation" plan.



Conclusion



All the criteria listed above can be found independent of each other in highly contested dissolutions, but remember that the appearance of some of them does not always constitute PAS. When all four are clearly present, however, add the possibility of real abuse has been reasonably ruled out, the parental alienation process is operative. This does not necessarily mean, however, that it is succeeding in that the children are being successfully alienated from the target parent. The best predictor of successful alienation is directly related to the success of the alienating parent at keeping the children from the target parent. When there are substantial periods in which they do not see the other parent, the children are more likely to be poisoned by the process. Another variable that predicts success is the child's age. Younger children generally are more vulnerable than older ones. Also, another variable is the depth and degree of involvement of the pre-separation parent-child relationship. The longer and more involved that relationship, the less vulnerable will be the children to successful alienation. The final predictor is the parental tenacity of the target parent. A targeted parent often gives up and walks away, thus greatly increasing the chances of successful alienation.



The question remains: What if all four criteria are present, but the children are not successfully alienated? Should this failure at alienation be seen as nullifying the attempt at alienation? The answer to that should be a resounding "No!" It should be, but often it is not. It is very common to read a psychological evaluation or a GAL's report that identified PAS but then notes that since it was not successful, it should not be taken very seriously. Nothing could be further from the truth. Any attempt at alienating the children from the other parent should be seen as a direct and willful violation of one of the prime duties of parenthood, which is to promote and encourage a positive and loving relationship with the other parent, and the concept of shared parental responsibility.



It is our feeling that when attempted PAS has been identified, successful or not, it must be dealt with swiftly by the court. If it is not, it will contaminate and quietly control all other parenting issues and then lead only to unhappiness, frustration, and, lastly, parental estrangement.



The Spectrum of Parental Alienation Syndrome. 15 Am. J. Forensic Psychol. No. 3 (1997).



2 S.S. Clawar and B.V. Rivlin, Children Held Hostage: Dealing with Programmed and Brainwashed Children, A.B.A. (1991).



Parental Alienation Syndrome: An Age-Old Custody Problem, 71 Fla. B.J. 93 (June 1997).



4 N. Theonnee and P.G. Tjaden, The Extent, Nature and Validity of Sexual Abuse Allegations in Custody Visitation Disputes, 12 Child Abuse and Neglect 151-63 (1990).



5 National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect, Washington, D.C.: Department of Health and Human Services, 2998, Contract 105-85-1702.



3





J. Michael Bone, Ph.D., is a sole practice psychotherapist and certified family law mediator in Maitland. He concentrates in divorce and post-divorce issues involving minor children, and has a special interest in PAS. He has served as on expert witness on these and related topics and has been appointed by the court to make recommendations involving PAS and families.



Michael R. Walsh is a sole practitioner in Orlando. He is a board certified marital and family law lawyer, certified mediator and arbitrator, and a fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. For more than 20 years, he has been a frequent lecturer and author for The Florida Bar.



This column is submitted on behalf of the Family Law Section, Jane L. Estreicher, chair, and Sharon O. Taylor, editor.





If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

68 Comments

View replies by

Rebecca - posted on 03/09/2009

15

5

2

My Boyfriend's children went through this. Their Divorce started their mother kid-napping the kids and taking them out of state. They were gone for three weeks. During that time their mother told the girls that their father threw them out, and didn't want them. She also told them that he beat her up (which never happened. He found out about her gambling and was going to divorce her) When he got the kids back they weren't sure what to think. They were afraid to hug him and felt guilty about going to see him. 2 years later the oldest understands that her mother was lying and would rather be with us. The youngest I think knows that too, but we still have problems with her wanting to be with her father and we aren't sure if it is because mom gets mad and can make her feel guilty or if she believes bad things about her father. We get them 70% of the time (its suppose to be 50%,but mom still gambles away their child support) and when they are with us, we go to the park and cook together, and eat and pray together, she loves being here but says she misses mommy. This hurts her dads feelings, because they never call when they are at their mother's, so he feels unappreciated. We are going to try something different though, we are going to start having father-daughter time every week. Time that he can go to the park or something and send time with each girl individually. I started thinking about relationships, for example my relationship with him. I realized that when he worked alot (full-time with a part-time job) I didn't feel as close to him. Now he is home more, and I miss him more. I am hoping this same thing will happen to the girls if they spend more quality time with dad. I will let you know how it goes.

Marilyn - posted on 03/09/2009

40

1

2

Thanks for the comments - this will help our case - my husband's son would call him almost daily - since we are going to court again - my step son has not called his father once in a 2 week period. My husband has called him - only for him to tell his father - "why are you calling" and he is grumpy - he is 7 yrs. old. The BioMom always answers the phone and gives it to the son - she is always in a bad mood and I guess to appease his mother - he has to grumpy with his father.

Erin - posted on 03/08/2009

205

9

8

Bio mom used to do that to my husband when my SD was five too....what craziness. And no it is her job tog et her daughter on the phone and encouage a relationship. The lawyer gave her lawyer all the proof that I had of her alienation behavior and staed that if the behavior continues they will have to modify the court order. She said that bio mom needs to encourage a relationship with dad dispite her obvious hatred of him and his new family.  her behavior is getting in the way of them developing a good relationship. And I'm guessing that her lawyer informed her that she could loose custody odf her daughter f it continues. The court system looks down upon parent alienation and tends to favor the alinated parent (as long as they are fit) becasue alienation is viewed as  abussive and damaging to the child and not at all in the child's best interest.

[deleted account]

Thanks for sharing the good news Erin! I wish it was the same my way. Now BM is telling my husband when he calls that SD has choices and her choice is not to speak to him right now. Then she hangs up the phone. What five year old gets to "pick" what she can and can't do? It's so frustrating and soo obviously PAS. Erin, what exactly did your lawyer say in the letter to BM's attorney?

Erin - posted on 03/07/2009

205

9

8

It seems that for the moment the lawyers threat has helped. My husband has had a wonderful visit with his daughter (huge sigh of relief) so that the damage has not been permentaly inflicted. We think bio mom was having a good day so my sd didn't have to hear a bunch of meaness about dad before the visit, which made her feel more cmfortable. But keep your fingers crosses, if things keep shinning for Bio mom, my kids and I might actually be able to visit her soon and we can start blending our families!

Stephanie - posted on 03/05/2009

2

2

0

On a better note My ss mom and I get along very well.We have always known that this is best for the child.Fighting and saying bad things about the other parent is NEVER good for the children.We have been co-parenting for 10 years and it could'nt be better!!!

Stephanie - posted on 03/05/2009

2

2

0

Just so everyone out there knows it's not just the custodial mothers who do this to their kids.My ex-husband stole my two kids from Georgia on a visitation and got his divorce illegally.I have been fighting this for 11 long years.I have not seen my kids for that long.I heard he told them I was dead so they won't try to contact me!!!!

Marilyn - posted on 03/05/2009

40

1

2

You girls are correct - she will get caught up in her lies and my husband has already proved her a lier at the last court date and he can do it again. The evidence we have is letters from CAS (which will be presented at court) she hasn't seen yet that confirms her lying, an affidavit from her last ex confirming her violence, her son-in-law called the police on her (he is going to be on the witness stand) because she was fighting with her daughter and she has the gall in her affidavit to say - she never fights with her children - she had a heated argument - but neglected to say the police were called and she was forced to leave the premises - and this is all done in front of my husband's son. She has to prove all of her statements made in her affidavit and not just her word, and my husband will prove her to be the lier she is in court - this will definitely put a big question mark in the judge's head as to whether she is telling the truth or not. She made her last lawyer look bad in court because of her lies and he isn't representing her this time.

Di - posted on 03/04/2009

521

20

47

I just feel like crying...... I have told my husband for a long time now that his daughters were in danger......but he doesn't want the fight. At least if I can get him to read that article I might have a chance. Every single criteria.....plus a few I could add myself. Except her target is me......or rather I am the easy blame. Thanks all for giving me something to back up what I am saying...... Thank you all for sharing so that it doesn't feel like I am all alone. I try not to hate her and this is great now, because I can just feel sorry for her instead. The last thing I want to do is be bitter and twisted like her...lol

Mary - posted on 03/04/2009

5

25

0

hmmm that's interesting I didn't think a judge would accept it since it's like "my word vs your word". Your right she def. is discrediting herself by getting caught up in her own web of LIES!!!!

[deleted account]

Affadavit is just what she's claiming.. her side. Like my husband had to write an affadavit saying he never hit his daughter when his ex tried to bring him back to court and claim that their now five year old daughter told her he hit SD two and half years ago when she was two and a half. I think lawyers use it to prove their point or to catch the other in a lie. But the thing about lying is that you get caught up in it and then you discredit yourself when up on the witness stand, as our BM did.

Mary - posted on 03/04/2009

5

25

0

your right Penny, they can't distinguish between the truth and the lies. After a while they start to believe their own lies.

I don't really think an affadavit will stand in court..doesn't make sense. I don't see how she can use that....you shouldn't worry.

Marilyn - posted on 03/04/2009

40

1

2

Thanks Mary - she is trying very hard in her affidavit to make my husband look really bad - even went so far as to say he uttered death threats to her - but we are not worried the responsibility lies with her to prove all of her statements - we know we have proof to prove all of ours, plus proof to prove her lying in her affidavit.

Mary - posted on 03/02/2009

5

25

0

Marilyn S. it sounds like you will def. win this case. Once the judge knows about the other son plus her ignorant behavior its a done deal for her!!

No child deserves to be next to such a miserable, horrible person!

GOOD LUCK!! I'll keep my fingers crossed!!!

Marilyn - posted on 03/02/2009

40

1

2

Absolutely correct Mary Rosa - I have the same problem. The BM is very miserable and can't accept that her ex is happy and uses their son all of the time. We are going to court for sole custody - and we have just found out -her other son (to another man) has been taken and sent to a foster home - so this is a plus for us when we go to court.

Mary - posted on 02/27/2009

5

25

0

BM is just a miserable bitch and can't accept that her ex has moved on and is happy while she is still miserable. They use their kids as "pawn", I bet if she didn't get her child support on time she'd call and push the kid over more. Keep logs of the behavior and her behavior as well, you may need it one day in court of for whatever purpose, you never know. No matter what you do nothing will change. If she's unhappy she wants everyone to be unhappy too!!!

evil selfish bitches that God sees and they have to look at their uglyness in the mirror everyday!! Stay positive bc when she wishes bad things upon you, good things will happen... she will never get ahead and never be happy!!!

[deleted account]

So frustrating ladies! My SD's teacher just emailed my husband and told him that after our weekend visit this week on Monday and Tuesday for the first time ALL school year SD refused to come into school and wouldn't play or eat with any friends. Only would talk about missing her mom. Now this is of course after we told SD's therapist that her teacher had told us she had no issues leaving her mom, enjoyed school, etc. We know BM is trying her darndest not to let us see SD over her Spring break in April where we live. She will just use this to say it's because of Dad that SD has issues. Yet she's the one feeding her a bunch of garbage! What is BM so freaking scared of? That SD will have an awesome time with her family here? SD even told us her mom told her she couldn't come to where we live and when I asked why she said she didn't know. Why can't these women put aside their own self-ish ambitions and look out for their children and put THEIR interests first??

Mary - posted on 02/27/2009

5

25

0

wow!! yep my stepdaughter has this! I didn't even know this was a "syndrome".

We are dealing with this now and everything good I've/we've ever done for her seems worthless now. Your damned if you do and your damned if you don't!!

Debbie - posted on 02/27/2009

626

5

103

Yea I agree...they cannot accept that they may have been the problem in the relationship or the fact that two ppl just cant get on, doesnt mean he is bad or she is bad...what they do after the break up is what makes them bad....my hubby's ex informs me ALL the time that my hubby "has hit every woman he has been with" Bullshit!!!!! I have been with him for 16yrs and I can honestly say the only person that has hit is me, I hit him, during one of those moments when 'SHE' was my friend and goaded my into it when I was drunk and just 17yrs old.

He has hit her and so has all her partners after him, even her husband that that marriage only lasted 7mths. She went out with my brother-in-law (long story) He never has ever raised a hand to a woman....she trashed his house, furniture, TV, etc..he hit her to get her to stop!!!! it was the only thing he could do at the time other than call the police and get her in trouble which he didnt want because of the kids. Looking back in hindsight, that would have been the ideal thing to do, in the heat of the moment ppl dont think well.

Anyway the girls know all this and SHE tells me that she is not going to "blame herself for what that evil man did to her" HA she should blame herself!!!

I could wright a book on this lady with all the things she has done to us, and I honestly can tell you the only things we have done is not made payments on time, sometimes and lately I have dobbed her into the Gov for fraud...

Anyway what I'm getting at is now the 20yr old wont speak to us and my hubby "can't walk her down the isle as it takes a special man to do that not someone that throws thier kids away when it gets too much" Thats from the mothers mouth....PAS???

Marilyn - posted on 02/27/2009

40

1

2

You girls are absolutely correct - these BM's do not take any responsibility - it is everyone else's fault if anything negative happens to them. They cannot look at themselves.

Erin - posted on 02/24/2009

205

9

8

I think Bio moms that have this syndrome need to find the happy in their lives and realize Dad is not the one to blame for their failed marraige/relationship. that it is a two way street and that there really isn't any harm coming to their child even if bio mom thinks dads a ceep. It takes two to tango sweetheart, now get over it!!



So I'm a 'Buffy the vampire slayer' fan and theirs a great quote by Cordelia that I think applies



""Get over it. What ever is causing this Joan Collins 'tude, Deal. Embrase the pain, spank your inner moppit, whatever. But get over it."



and that is what these chicks need to do.

Jaime - posted on 02/24/2009

769

35

94

Very true Dawn!!

I was just joking about sending her the article, because I know she has read all my posts!

Dawn - posted on 02/24/2009

188

30

21

Quoting Jaime:

Just finished reading the PAS article!! Wondering if I should forward it to our biomom, maybe she would wake up and smell the coffee than.
Our situation is alot of he said she said crap. I don't think all the letters, emails, and phone conversations would get us anywhere.


 



 



Jamie, you don't have to forward anything to her; you know she's read it on this board.



The problem is these women are far to angry and bitter to reconigize any of their behavior as bad or negative.    The are unwilling to find fault in themselves; instead, they have to blame someone else and who is the nearest to the child beside them - Dad and StepMom.  Please.  If these woman cared about their child the way they should, the would be able to "smell the coffee" and would start trying to do right by their kid.



I mean, we're all on here looking for answers.  Have you ever noticed there's not a board of BM's complaining about BD's screwing with the kids' heads.....

Marilyn - posted on 02/24/2009

40

1

2

Hi Leaha - is there a court order? If so - keep quoting it to her and do not deviate from it. If she keeps it up you may want to go back to court for comtempt. The article we received in the Toronto Star - we then went to the law site and got the full order off - this mother lost custody and all rights of her children - no visitation. It is very interesting and a good resource. The law site is CanLll A.G.L. vs K.B.D.

Jaime - posted on 02/23/2009

769

35

94

Just finished reading the PAS article!! Wondering if I should forward it to our biomom, maybe she would wake up and smell the coffee than.

Our situation is alot of he said she said crap. I don't think all the letters, emails, and phone conversations would get us anywhere.

Leaha - posted on 02/20/2009

307

24

54

OMG! Just have to vent for a minute here. Let me explain a little more about why I feel this is what I am dealing with in my husbands ex...  Just this past week!!  We have visitation with my stepchildren on Tuesdays, Thursdays and every other weekend. k. Just this past Tuesday, we had the kiddos, (we only get them on tues and thurs long enough to feed them) She shows up at the exchange site 20 min's late, no phone call. Then after having them for 45 min's she calls and says she needs to pick them up 30 min's early, for some stupid reason!!!!! Then on Thursday, my step daughter had a girl scout meeting in another town from like 3-6 or something stupid like that, so she takes her out of school early and my husband doesn't get them thursday for visitation, and isn't willing to allow the time to be made up.  Then, this is our weekend to have them, and she of couse drops them off late as always, then proceeds to TELL my husband that we WILL have them this coming friday and saturday as well, because in two weeks she wants them on saturday and sunday for some stupid thing that she has planned!!!!!!   Why does this woman think that she can control our lives. This coming weekend is my husbands birthday, so screw any plans I had made!!!  Now on top of that, tonight at dinner, the kids are now calling my husband by name!!!! The oldest says, Mommy says your Chad and that's what we should call you. Can you beleive this crap!!!! Plus she is still telling them that they ARE NOT to call me mom, that I am just daddy's slut!!! I am so pissed, why would any woman say those kind of things to her children?? And there's nothing I can do. If he stands up to her, she just takes them away from him more! I don't know what to do anymore.

Jerri - posted on 02/19/2009

3

1

0

I have 2  SD I love them very much.The oldest is 18 and in college she has come to see her dad and me are not so bad and comes around and calls more than she has in a long time.The youngest is 16 and the only time she calls is when she wants money even though we pay child support.If her dad says she can have some money she comes to get it but she will not even set down just stands at the door then says shes got to go meeting her friends.I know she has been told we are awful people the oldest has told us lately some things that was said.



I have a son that goes to see his dad every other weekend he is 14 for 12 years Ilet him go I really didnt like it because his dad never paid a penny in child support but had the money to do whatever he wanted.I really hope and pray I havent made him feel this way

Marilyn - posted on 02/19/2009

40

1

2

Here's the article ladies "Mom loses custody for alienating dad" Ruling is a wake-up call for parents who use their kids to punish ex partners. The website is www.thestar.com/article/576619, it was the January 27, 2009 edition, Toronto Star and this happened in Toronto.

Marilyn - posted on 02/18/2009

40

1

2

There is also a court case that was recently won by the father due to his ex - he got custody of his daughter, it was in January, 2009, my spouse received an email from a friend of his - I will try and get the article for anyone who wants it.

Marilyn - posted on 02/18/2009

40

1

2

This is interesting - I am too experiencing this with my spouse's ex - like Debbie - I thought his ex was just a mad bitch as well - we are in a custody battle -she lost sole custody last year and went to joint - you would think she would change her ways but there is still mental abuse she is engaging in and she too does not follow a court order.

Erin - posted on 02/18/2009

205

9

8

I had a recent possitve turn of events. After disclosing to our lawyer all the proof that his ex was trying to turn his daughter on him, his lawyer wrote her lawyer a letter basically telling him that we have proff of her innapropriate behavior/attitude towars us in front of the child and if it doesn't stop we will "adjust the court order accordingly". So she took off her nasty comments on myspace about us, changed her myspace name (both of which I just found amusing) but the real possitive thing was, when my husnad called to talk to his daughter monday, she picked up and acted normal again! They talked for a long time and had a rally great time on the phone with each other. It was like his ex wasn't even in the room, she was back to normal! Now, I don't know how long this will last but it gives me hope that maybe with the treat of loosing her daughter, she realized its better to "pretend to be civil" and encourage her daughters relationship with her father. I'm still pissed off about that photo album I made for her that mom burned in one of her fits. But we can allways make more. And next time maybe I will get her to make it with me. :)

Kerrie - posted on 02/13/2009

2

23

0

OMG, this syndrome fits my step-daughters mom to the dot. My stepdaughter can have the most amazing time at our house and then go home to her Moms house and tell her that she had an awful time because she knows that that is the kind of attention her mom likes and wants to hear. My Kayla is 9 and her mom has been feeding her brain since she was 3 years old. But Kayla has totally  learned that she can play her mom real well too. This is how she gets everything she wants and she knows it because she is the only child there and here she is one of 4. Thats for posting this article. I am going to research this more. It is good to know that I am not the crazy one.....

Erin - posted on 02/12/2009

205

9

8

Found this actual court paper and thought it very helpful and informative since I can identify the bio mom in each of these criteria...its disgusting.

Erin - posted on 02/11/2009

205

9

8

Thankfully my husbands ex is still affraid of the court system and adhears to the court appointed visitations. But its still painfull for my husband to go up there every month and have his little girl be completely changed, and for no reason. We are seeing what his lawyers plan is but we want to try and get her for the summers and every other holiday and be done with it because then at least she will have exteneded time with us and might drop the 'tude becasue mom isnn't around the corner, at least that is what we hope for.

Fiona - posted on 02/10/2009

3

4

0

i totally agree we r in the same boat and it is so frustrating with courts and lawyers we now have full custody of my husbands 14 year old as her mother has pas bad but the courts do not see what they r doing

Fiona - posted on 02/10/2009

3

4

0

Quoting Dawn:



I find this interesting.  Especially the descriptions of the Alienators. Its all over this message board.






My SS's mom is the Obsessed ALienator....I thought so, and knew for sure when I read this...






" The court's authority does not intimidate them." 






She is a woman who without care, doesn't follow a court order in any way.  As long as she keeps the child from his Dad.





 

Leaha - posted on 02/10/2009

307

24

54

Yea, we thought about that and have tried it too. It works here for the 7 and 2 year old, but the problem is with the 10 year old in a diffrent state. The sherrifs offce just tells us to consult our attorneys. Because she is out of state there is nothing they can do. I thinks its crap, but oh well.

[deleted account]

Leaha, I don't know if this applies, but my sister-in-law has visitation with my niece and recently her ex and she got into it. Her ex told her he was terminating all visits and that if she tried to come pick up their daughter he would call the cops on her for kidnapping. Well my sister-in-law went to the sheriff's office with her court order and told them her ex was giving her a hard time about visits, etc. The sheriff looked over the court order and told her he would escort her to her ex's house to pick up her daughter because he knew it was her right to see her child. Things worked out where she didn't need the sheriff but he told her if she ever had any problems with visits again to contact him and he'd go with her to her ex's house.

Leaha - posted on 02/10/2009

307

24

54

Thanks for this information. I don't think I've ever heard of it before, but I knew it was happening in my situation before I even read all these posts. My children are getting it from both sides though. My husband has 3 children with 2 other women. I have a daughter of my own with me ex. We don't have any children together yet. My husbands first child is 10 and she's been going through this since birth. She has been moved to another state so any kind of a relationship with my husband has been strained for a long time. My husband has a court order for visitation, but court orders don't matter to her mother. It's amazing how many parents ignore court orders but yet the other parent can't do much about it. He's lucky if he gets to see his daughter once a year. Her mother and step-father are constantly badmouthing my husband and even now myself. Her mother and I were actually really good friends when she was born. Her mother wanted nothing to do with my now husband, but didn't want me to be with him either, Imagine that! lol. It's evident that PAS is present in her life. My husbands other two's mother is definately doing the same thing, but I feel it's on a much larger level. She dictates when he gets to visit with his children and before we got married even tried to get a court order that I was not alowed to be around the children. And tried to have his visitation revoked because he was "shoving that slut down their throat". Yea, slut, whore, bitch, homewrecker, I've been called everyname in the book. 3 years into this crap is really getting old. She is constantly downgrading my husband infront of the children who are 7 and 2, so they are old enough to be aware of what she is saying. The 2 year old, has called me mom since he was 6 months old, and now is coming for visitation and occasionaly says "no, you not my mom". Talk about heart breaking. I know he's not mine, but I love these kids to death and would do anything for them.  And then there's my biological daughter. I have 50/50 custody with her father, wich I hate. It has done so much harm for her, I am currently in the prosses of getting the visitation changed to full custody with me. We have to go to mediation, again, this week, not that it will help. And then I'm sure have a guardian ad liten come in again. We've been through so much because of my ex. He has brainwashed her to the point where we have had to deal with the cops and childrens services 4 diffrent times because he has convinced her that my husband has been mean to her. But then when childrens services come in to the home to talk to my daughter, who is 8, she tells them the truth. It's so frustrating, I feel like there's nothing I can do for these kids. It breaks my heart and I cry everyday to think that when our children aren't with us that they are so unhappy being filled with lies about my husband and I. My husbands ex has not remaried yet, and neither has my ex, but my ex does have a much younger live in girlfriend who tries to play mommy to my daughter. My daughter is always telling me things that she is saying about me and my husband, and I never know what to tell her. I just say that I'm sorry they are telling her that, and I tell her that she should ask them not to say those things that she feels are not true. She tells me she does and they do it anyway. I'm so lost. Why can't these people see what they are doing to these children? They aren't hurting the other parent like they are trying to, why cant they realize that they are hurting our children?

[deleted account]

I'm so sorry Erin! We definitely need to exchange info so we can chat about our similar situations, share ideas, etc!! We went through the same things with my SD.. too much to tell in one sitting.

Erin - posted on 02/09/2009

205

9

8

So its official. My step daughter has crossed over. This last visit with her dad was horrible. In previous visits they would hug, wrestle, she would sit on his lap and basically be attached to him, happy as could be. We noticed that about an hour before her return trip to moms she had begun to change attitudes and had become rude to her father. Last month he had a fight with his ex over pictures of his daughter being on my myspace page (and the fat that we just had a baby boy) and she goaded her daughter into telling my husband that she hated him for making mommy cry and that he was a jerk. So, this visit she was a differnet person. Wouldn't let him hug her, hold her hand or even sit at the same table as him. She was distant and rude and didn't want anything to do with him. Needless to say it broke my husbands heart to see her so brainwashed. My mother in law noticed it too and could tell that "whatever her mom is doing, its working, becasue she is totally differnt now". Its disgusting and a totaly form of child abuse. I'm hopeing our lawyer can do something about it at least to get it to stop so that maybe we can un-brain wash her, though I hear thats impossible to do.

[deleted account]

My bf and I have dealt with a lot of PAS before from his Ex - who actually claims that she is the victim herself. They once had mediation and she was sited as being an active parental alienator! There are many sites out there, another one is hugstoheartbreakblog.

Amanda - posted on 02/04/2009

5

5

0

Thank you so much for the article.  My SD has actually had all of the moderate signs to the point where they crying never ended all weekend long and she had to call her mother every two hours. We actually took steps to not seeing her, to only getting her on one day, to now we get her all weekend long. It is very hard dealing with a person like this but you just have to show the child love. My SD also has a severe milk allergy and throw in the stress her mother puts on her I feel horrible for the little thing. She makes comments like "WOW you really make fancy meals!" I made a pork roast or a turkey dinner...not that hard...espically when it was done in a crock pot! My husband have two children of our own and I teach manners/morals/values to them everyday.  There is nothing being taught to her it's like she comes back from her mothers house and everything we have taught her is gone! My three year old makes less of a mess and can use his fork better. I feel bad for my husband because he loves that little girl and "she" just wants the check and not have him for anything else.

Jessica - posted on 02/02/2009

56

9

6

We found out about this a long time ago and my husband tries to use it in court.  We've never had any luck - but never let that stop you - it only takes one ruling then everyone can start referring to it.  I don't know if anyone is aware of the new legislation in California about not smoking with children in a vehicle - but we're pretty certain it was our court case that lead to it - pretty cool if you ask me!



Anyhow, that was really offf topic



The best thing you can do for the kids is: #1 - like many of you said  - MAKE SURE YOU DON'T DO IT TOO - it's harder to stop than most people realize - it doesn't always take the form of hellish manipulation and telling the kids they're not loved etc. It can also be the simple little remarks like "I bet she did!" when your child is upset about something biomom did instead of "we all have time's we forget" or whatever the case may be.  REmember as much as it sucks and it may not feel true you need to defend the other parent - not just 'not say nasty things'.



#2 I f the child is old enough and mature enough (a destinction you'll all have to make individually) tell them it's ok to stand up, NOT TALK BACK, but stand up for the other parent and their own feelings.  We told my SD if ANYONE including us and grandparents or whatever (we all slip sometimes) says stuff you don't want to hear you can stop it yourself.  A few pointers to give them: first try - "Please don't say that about daddy/mommy".  If that gets ignored or as we used to get "but it's true" then try "(s)he's my parent just like you and I don't want to listen to anything mean - I love you both" and in really horrible cases stuff like "I don't let daddy say things about you so please don't say things about daddy" (or mommy as the case may be).  This gives kids some power and begins to teach them fair fighting (which most kids desperately need to learn, especially if they have been through custody disputes!)  It also teaches kids who really loves them and respects them because if they've nicely asked a person to stop and they do, they can feel that respect.  Don't think for one minute that the kids are daft enough to not realize the exes hate each other - that doesn't mean they should hear it, and they really do have to respect and love both parents (until they're older if there's good reason not to)



#3 - REmember to support them and love them as much as you can and eventually they see the truth no matter how nasty the things are on the other end.

Debbie - posted on 02/01/2009

626

5

103

Hi I have adult step kids and I have been in thier life since they were little. The two elder ones lived with us and the two younger ones had a different mum and they lived with her. We had them every holidays and sometimes they lived with us for a few mths at a time. I don't have any problems with my two older Step kids but the two younger ones I do. The oldest of the two younger ones wont even speak to her Dad or siblings and will only speak to me when she wants something. Although xmas has come and gone and we heard nothing from her. It all boils down to the lies she has been feed over the years and we can't seem to change them. the younger one still talks to Dad but it is becoming only when she needs something also. They both missed out on the eldests wedding and they also dont see thier younger brothers and sisters nor thier neices. It is very sad and we miss them so much, untill they can wake up and realise that they are the ones doing this there is nothing we can do. We just let them know that we are here and we will do anything for them, when they are ready to come back to us.



So I think it is your SD problem, not yours you havent done anything. She hopefully will realise this and start talking to you all again, Just make her aware that you all love her and when she is ready you will be there.

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms