If you have a shared-custody arrangement, you expect your ex-spouse to treat you and your parent-child relationships with respect. Sadly, though, too many parents use children as pawns, especially after bitter divorces. Indeed, your ex might actively try to turn your kids against you.
Parental alienation happens when a parent does just that. Many child psychologists are finally sounding the alarm, though. In fact, according to Psychiatric Times, they often consider parental alienation to be a type of child abuse, especially when the alienation is severe. Here are some ways parental alienation negatively affects children.
It is not uncommon for child victims of parental alienation to develop deep-seated trust issues. If your ex-spouse alienates your kids, they may struggle to trust you, their other parent, their teachers and their friends. Resolving these trust issues might require significant psychological counseling.
Children do not perceive the world in the same way adults do. Specifically, they tend to have much smaller worlds with only a few important people in their lives. Because parental alienation targets an important person, you, it can cause children to develop low-self esteem and even depression.
Kids often freely give and accept love from their parents, close relatives and friends. Parental alienation can interfere with this, however. Indeed, if your children are victims of parental alienation, they may have long-long struggles accepting love from others.
Ultimately, because parental alienation has serious consequences for the young ones in your family, it might be necessary to take legal action to stop it.