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What is Parental Alienation?

Parental alienation is a phenomenon that occurs when one parent attempts to brainwash the child against the other parent. As a consequence, the child may develop feelings of hostility towards the other parent, and may display these feelings openly. The phenomenon is seen frequently in a hostile divorce, when one parent tries to turn the child’s mind against the other parent.

Unfortunately, because courts place so much importance on the child’s best interests, alienation can actually result in a person losing his child custody rights. Courts may decide that since the child feels so overwhelmingly against the parent, or is unhappy in the presence of the parent, the child’s best interests are served by minimizing the parents present in his life. In such cases, it’s very important to seek legal guidance from a family lawyer in Colorado who can protect your best interests.

Why do parents alienate their children from the other parent?

Often, the alienating parent has a lot of unresolved anger or hostility towards the other parent for any injustices done to him or her during the divorce. In other cases, the parent has unresolved issues from his/her own childhood, may suffer from a psychological disorder, or suffer from extreme insecurity which leads to him/her engaging in such practices.

The following signs may indicate that a child is being subjected to such brainwashing by the other parent.

  • The child is being informed about the reasons for your divorce.
  • The child is being asked to choose whether he wants to visit the other parent.
  • The other parent is blaming you for the divorce in front of the child.
  • The other parent refuses to be flexible about visitation arrangements.
  • The child is being asked choose the other parent over you.
  • The other parent encourages the child to show hostility and anger towards you.
  • The child is not able to articulate why he feels hostile towards you.

If you find these signs in your child, or are afraid that your child is being alienated from you, speak to a divorce lawyer in Colorado immediately.