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My spouse is inciting the child against me. What do I do?

On Behalf of | Feb 14, 2023 | Divorce Mediation

Not many experiences can be as painful as your child – your own flesh and blood – turning against you. Hearing them say they never want anything to do with you or that they hate you can be heartbreaking. But what if you discover that your ex has something to do with your child’s recent behavior and attitude toward you?

Divorce can bring out the worst in people. And one way this happens is through parental alienation. But what is parental alienation and what can you do if your ex is alienating you from your child?

Understanding parental alienation

Basically, parental alienation happens when one parent interferes with the child’s relationship with the other parent through manipulation. In other words, the perpetrating parent takes deliberate steps and malicious steps to isolate the child from the other parent through words and actions that sow division, estrangement or outright hostility between the child and the victimized parent.

So what do you do if the other parent is alienating you from your child?

Parental alienation can have devastating effects on both the child and the alienated parent. Here are three steps you can take to counter this practice:

Maintain your cool – Naturally, you will be angry when you learn about your ex’s actions. However, this can lead to an irrational response. If your ex is alienating you from your child, maintain your cool and focus on addressing the issue at hand. This is not the time to take the matter into your hands and plot your revenge. Instead, gather your evidence.

Take the matter to court – sometimes, you might talk the issues out with your ex. However, if mediation fails, then you need to bring the matter to the attention of the court. Depending on the magnitude of the alienation, the court may modify the existing custody order.

Parental alienation is simply wrong. If your ex is alienating you from your child, you need to explore your legal options so you can safeguard your child’s best interests as well as your parenting rights.