Since Father's Day is nearing, I thought it would be a good time to write a brief submission on Parental Alienation, or PA for short.
I want to make clear that PA not only affects fathers, but mothers, and grandparents as well. Of course the child(ren) that are involved are negatively affected by PA.
What is PA? According to Dr. Richard Gardner who coined the phrase Parental Alienation, defines it:
“As any constellation of behaviors, whether conscious or unconscious, that could evoke a disturbance in the relationship between a child and the other parent.”
The most important aspect to remember when it comes to PA is this: the CHILD is put in the middle between the mother and father. The child suffers the most.
PA is conversional. Currently, the American Psychiatric Association (APA) does not recognize PA or Parental Alienation Syndrome, a condition where the child aligns him or herself with the alienating parent. Their official statement reads:
“The American Psychological Association (APA) believes that all mental health practitioners as well as law enforcement officials and the courts must take any reports of domestic violence in divorce and child custody cases seriously. An APA 1996 Presidential Task Force on Violence and the Family noted the lack of data to support so-called "parental alienation syndrome", and raised concern about the term's use. However, we have no official position on the purported syndrome.”
I don’t claim to be an expert on PA or PAS, but I do know that families are torn apart from their effects, including my own. If you can, stay out of the courts and attempt family mediation. Talk. Forgive. Build an effective parenting plan that works for all.
For more information on this topic, please see: http://www.parental-alienation-awareness.com