Personalized Legal Attention Call


Make It Our Fight

At White & White, Attorneys at Law, we care about our clients and about helping them improve their lives.

Helping children recover from parental alienation

On Behalf of | Dec 5, 2023 | Child Custody

Parental alienation is when one parent intentionally negatively influences children’s perception of their other parent. Tactics used may include false accusations, lies and slander. It can have serious emotional and psychological consequences for children that carry into adulthood.

Parents targeted by alienators may suddenly find themselves the target of resentment, hostility, disrespect and unfair treatment by their children. However, it is important to remember that the children are under the influence of the alienator and confused. Instead of reacting, parents can take certain steps to help them recover from the alienation.

Encourage open communication

Providing a safe space for children to express their feelings without judgment fosters trust. Parents need to listen and acknowledge their emotions, reassuring the children that they respect and acknowledge their feelings. This can allow the youths to open up in honest discussions that may allay fears and help them realize the truth.

Encourage a positive relationship with the other parent

Alienated parents need to avoid retaliating against the alienating parent by behaving in the same manner. This only hurts the children. Instead, they need to promote healthy connections with both parents, regardless of the challenges faced. This may include not bad-mouthing the other parent and trying to schedule quality time with each child.

Encourage the use of professional support

Mental health professionals can provide children with needed guidance. Therapists can help children process their emotions and develop coping strategies. Professional intervention can help children navigate the complexities of parental alienation. This includes any confusion they may feel over the emotional manipulation they underwent.

Encourage following routines

Consistency and stability can help children recover from the effects of parental alienation. Maintaining a predictable routine provides a sense of security. A stable environment can help children as they deal with unfamiliar emotions and any lies told to them.

According to Contemporary Pediatrics, research shows that over 22 million adults have experience with being on the receiving end of alienation. Given many may have more than one child, this means even more children experience alienation. Patience, understanding, stability and love are important for helping children recover from parental alienation.