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Tips to Coping with Parental Alienation

September 19, 2012

 

Methods and Suggestions from Parents on Coping with

Parental Alienation

 

In the midst of Parental Alienation, as a target parent you may wonder what it was you ever did to cause your own child to not even talk or spend time with you. Perhaps you feel that if the relationship between you and your child’s other parent hadn’t broken down, you would still have the loving, wonderful relationship with your child that you used to have. You may doubt yourself and feel embarrassed to talk about it with others close to you, fearing that the blame will be laid all on your shoulders for the baffling deterioration of the relationship between your child and you, you may worry a confidant will wonder what it is you did to cause it.

You may also feel very alone, powerless and at loss as to what to do. It may interrupt your sleep, your job, your relationship with friends and family, your whole way of life.

 

Many parents have been where you are now, some still struggling hard to maintain a relationship with their child, hanging on to that last thread with everything they have. Some non-custodial parents see their children regularly but it feels forced and appears unwelcome by their child and other parents have tragically lost contact with their child all together, having gone weeks, months and sometimes years without any communications at all.

 

We asked parents currently in various stages of alienation and even some that have succeeded in overcoming PA, what they did to cope with it all. Some of the answers are simple, yet very effective and others may come as a surprise to you. Not all the answers are solutions for everyone, as each of us handle our troubles differently, but we do hope these suggestions from other parents may help you cope through the difficult times and offer you some solace in knowing you are not alone.

These coping methods are not in any particular order and are written for various stages of alienation, either mild, moderate or severe.

 

  1. Learn about Parental Alienation; an understanding of the dynamics, an understanding of what the child may be going through and the knowledge of what can happen, may release you from so many unwarranted burdens you may carry.Readingup on Parental Alienation is essential.
  2. Share your new found understanding of Parental Alienation with others, a spouse, trusted family member or friend, so that they may support you and understand your perspective.
  3. Take care of your health. It is imperative to stay active and at peace with yourself in order to remain strong for your child. With a better understanding of Parental Alienation this will come easier for you.
  4. Stay in contact with your child’s school and health care providers, request newsletters, report cards and a school photo package. Anything like this will at least help you know how your child is doing in an environment away from the other parent. Sometimes a child may behave completely different at school than they do in the presence of the alienating parent.
  5. Start a diary, journal or even your own blog webpage. Write to your child or about your life with thoughts in mind that one day they may read it. Parents have even made tribute videos to their child on websites such as YouTube, which is a wonderful way to share the memories, express your love for your child, and something to always treasure. Please remember however, that if you choose to write or put up anything online, use caution, you may want to keep it in an unidentifiable manner to some degree, to protect your child and yourself in the future for when circumstances change.
  6. Take up an old hobby, craft or sport you used to love to do, anything that makes you feel good about you and takes your mind off your troubles. It is perfectly alright to enjoy yourself and don’t feel guilty about situations beyond your control. Some parents chose to work more, keeping occupied this way also brings a sense of accomplishment and productivity.
  7. Honour your child by making a scrapbook or photo album full of positive times and memories, something that someday can be shared with them.One parent thought of making video’s of special occasions, filming special family members talking to the child, along with celebrating their absent child’s birthday with a cake for them and recording it all for them to see later on. A beautiful way to let them know how they are deeply loved, missed and always have been. Something they will surely treasure for years to come and something for you, as a parent to let them know they were not ever forgotten or abandoned, as they may have been lead to believe.
  8. Join a support group or online resource group. Just being able to talk about this in a safe and understanding environment can be very uplifting.
  9. Some parents have become very vocal with sharing awareness of Parental Alienation in their own communities, giving the behaviour a public face. They have become actively involved in such things as PA awareness campaigns and the Family Rights movement. By sharing and educating others they have found it rewarding and comforting. It can be as small as handing out a brochure on the subject, to creating an educational website, to as big as donning a superhero costume and climbing bridges. Some have written novels or educational books while others have simply shared resources and offered understanding to others who are going through alienation themselves.
  10. Put yourself up on communication websites such as Facebook or Twitter. Leave your page open in the search stations. Some parents write daily heartwarming messages to their child on their wall in hopes that their child will see them. We are hearing more and more about parents and children who have re-united on public forums such as this.
  11. Take long walks, bicycle rides or go for a drive when you are feeling down. No matter how you feel when you leave you are almost certain to feel better afterwards. Listen to music, full blast if it feels good and sing or cry along.
  12. Find a trusted family member or close mutual friend that is connected with your child, someone who can let you know how they are doing. It’s okay to ask, you have the right to know.
  13. Sometimes when your attempts of gift giving to your child are left unacknowledged or even returned to you, there may be other ways to honour your child. Some parents have found that by donating funds or items to those in need, such as orphanages, community service groups or even local children’s sports programs for example, gives them satisfaction from helping others. Donating in lieu of gifts to your child, can be very gratifying.
  14. Keep your parenting style the same than before the relationship changed, when you are with your child. Do not feel you need to become a ‘Disneyland Mom or Dad’. Quality is much better than quantity in the long term both for your child and yourself.
  15. Become actively involved at your child’s school and extra-curricular activities or maintain the level of involvement you had prior to changes in your relationship. Volunteer in the community to help other children’s programs and activities. Helping other children in need, however you choose to, is always a very rewarding experience.
  16. Always maintain your time with your child in a positive way however you can and do not involve them in any way with your troubles with the other parent. Refusing to engage in the negativity of Parental Alienation and protecting your child from it as best you can will bring you peace of mind. Talk about good times you had in the past, spend a little time looking at old photographs, keeping the good memories alive and well for your child and you. For older children, send little positive text messages if you are able, just to say ‘I love you and can’t wait to see you again’. You may think this goes unnoticed and it very well may be left unacknowledged,  but the loving message is clear to your child and that’s what counts.
  17. Be gentle yet firm in how you allow your child to talk or act towards you. Teaching them what is acceptable and what isn’t is far better in the long term. Giving them a ‘good moral compass’ as one parent puts it, and seeing them grow to be good citizens will be worth it despite the pain of having them periodically act as though they hate you. Again, knowing you are doing the right thing despite the circumstances is a way to keep yourself positive.
  18. Keep a gratitude journal just for yourself. On the darkest of days, writing an entry to this journal can help the despair from weighing you down on a long term basis. Having it available to read through when you need to can also bring comfort.
  19. See your doctor, if you feel you are unable to cope with this on your own. If you are not sleeping or eating properly and taking care of yourself things may not improve. Do not be afraid to ask for help and suggestions, it isn’t not by any means easy to deal with being a target parent and it is not something you have to do alone.
  20. Avoid thinking and feeling as if you are a victim, but at the same time take it easy on yourself. Some things you just can not control, such as the actions of the alienating parent but you can control your reaction to them and by remaining as positive, strong and healthy as you can is what matters in the end, both for you and your child.
    Information here gathered from www.paawareness.org
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11 Comments
  1. Woah! I’m really digging the template/theme of this site. It’s simple, yet effective.

    A lot of times it’s very difficult to get that “perfect balance” between user friendliness and visual appearance. I must say you have done a very good job with this. In addition, the blog loads very fast for me on Internet explorer. Excellent Blog!

  2. Thank you so much for this. I searched & searched for how to cope when I first realized I was experiencing Parental Alienation. The usual encouragement doesn’t apply to victims of PAS.

  3. Reblogged this on Moms' Hearts Unsilenced and commented:
    The isolation involved in Parental Alienation only makes this nightmare more difficult to survive. I am thankful for those who are reaching out. — Donna

  4. Reblogged this on Children's Rights.

  5. lebaronjensen permalink

    Reblogged this on LeBaron & Jensen, P.C..

  6. took 10 years of my life away it wasn’t living just existing and iv just been though it again but this time with the local authority & it took me back as they have acted just like my ex partner did all them years ago so is this another 10 yrs of my life in a haze ?????

  7. Very. Useful and practical. Advice

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Tips to Coping with Parental Alienation | Journey Through Alienation
  2. Coping with Parental Alienation | Hickory Family Law Blog

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