Parental alienation is a serious problem for some families going through divorce. This is a process in which one parent starts to alienate the children from the target parent. They may do this through bribery, manipulating their feelings or capitalizing on their children’s incorrect beliefs. They may try to cut off communication or minimize contact to maintain control, too.
Parental alienation damages and ruins relationships between children and the target parent, which is why it’s important to recognize the signs and to put a stop to it as soon as possible.
What are the red flags of parental alienation?
There are a few red flags that you’ll notice if your children are being alienated against you. Here are three that are the most obvious.
- Ignoring custody times or orders
If the other parent regularly “forgets” to drop off your children or keeps them longer by making claims that they’re sick or don’t want to see you, then this is potentially a red flag. Court orders must be followed, so if your custody orders are being ignored, you need to speak up.
- Filing repeated allegations of abuse without proof
Sometimes, the target parent will find themselves facing allegations of abuse or violence against their children, even though no such thing happened. This is the other parent’s attempt at controlling custody and alienating their children from the target.
- Asking children to spy on the other parent
If your children tell you that the other parent asked them to ask you questions or to look for information at your home, it’s time to talk to your attorney. This kind of behavior could be them trying to gather evidence against you to use in court or to manipulate your children into not wanting to see you in the future.
Don’t let parental alienation ruin your relationships
If you see these signs, it may be time to discuss changing your child custody plans with a modification request. Letting a judge know about this issue could help you protect your relationship with your children and put an end to this unfair treatment.