After a messy divorce, parenting can be difficult. It can be worse if you find out that the other parent may be using strategies to create a distance between you and your child. Parents who make false and critical statements about the other parent in front of the child may alienate the child and lead to parental alienation syndrome.
While not an official syndrome, Healthline explains that it is still a very real phenomenon with mental health effects.
What is parental alienation?
Parents who alienate the other parent may make harsh or critical claims for the child to hear. The parent forcing distance between you and your child may divulge in details about your relationship that children have no business learning. He or she may even plan activities to tempt your child away from you during your visitation or custody time.
In severe cases, the alienator will claim that the other parent does not love the child or does not want to see him or her. Over time, the child may begin to refuse to see the alienated parent.
Does your child have parental alienation syndrome?
If you had a good relationship with your child before and suddenly it begins to deteriorate, this could be a sign of parental alienation. Children may have all negative feelings about their parent, they may use adult language to refer to situations that they should have no memory of. While they will have strong opinions, they will not have any evidence or justifications for the opinion. The child will have a strong attachment and loyalty to the alienator.