For all of you single dads out there, this is a topic that you had better be aware of. It could get the better of you before you know what hit you.
Parental Alienation Syndrome is basically one partner, usually the custodial mother systematically turning the children against their father. It is insidious. It shows up in children suddenly not wanting to come over for their court ordered visitation. It might manifest itself in the children saying that they hate their dad for no good reason or made up reasons. It can show up as a daughter falsely claiming that her dad sexually abused her. The time to act is now.
The first thing that you want to do is contact the family court that ordered the visitation. Find out if they have what is called a visitation coordinator or expeditor. If they do, contact that person immediately and enlist their help. If not, you need to get your exe back into court. You need to line up an attorney who has had experience and training in dealing with Parental Alienation Syndrome. You will also want to find a counselor in your area who has had experience and training in PAS as well. The courts typically don’t want to deal with this and they will tend to want to refer the kids to a counselor. You need to be prepared to give them a suggestion with a couple of names of counselors that you have already interviewed. The court could also appoint a guardian at litem. You want to ask that they court appoint someone who has had training in dealing with PAS. Surprisingly, courts are very antiquated and are not up on this Syndrome.
If you don’t get ahead of the curve you could lose your children’s relationship until they are grown. There are a number of good books published on the subject. You will want to buy and read the book published by the American Psychological Assn called DIVORCE WARS. I would suggest that you read at least one other book which you can find on Amazon. Just punch into their search engine PARENTAL ALIENATION SYNDROME.
Now I must tell you to take care of yourself. It is easy to get hurt from the hateful things that the kids say. DON’T!
You have to understand that they are doing their mother’s bidding. There is another similar syndrome called the Stockholm Syndrome. It is similar in that once someone is held hostage over time they can identify with their captors.
The most famous case of this was Patty Hearst. You need to practice the upmost patience here and not get angry with your children. It is the mother’s fault. She has found an effective way to exact revenge on you for the marriage break up. If you would like to talk to me about it, you could drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will give you a half hour free consultation.