Dealing with parental alienation can be difficult but alienated parents should not give up. In all possibilities, parents should persevere in their efforts to make a relationship and contact with their child despite rejections and failures.
There may not be an easy way to combat alienation particularly if there has been a considerable time gap between contacts with the child. Moreover, things can be more upsetting and adverse than you actually considered them to be. You may need the help of an expert to emerge successful in your efforts. Here are some potentially useful ways to cope with parental alienation.
Ways To Cope With Parental Alienation
Dissociating From The Past
Something unfavorable happening in the past can take too high a toll in future. You need to let the child realize that relationship is not restricted to a bitter experience. Take the help of happy and enjoyable moments which were shared prior to the separation between parents.
It is important that the child sees the good and encouraging aspect of the denigrate parent. He/she should be aware of what a blood relative might sacrifice which is not the case for strangers. When children realize the significance of a relationship, they can attach more worth to it.
Being Firm And Proactive
When dealing with parental alienation, be firm and proactive in changing attitudes. You should not think too hard about changing a behavior which (might have) caused the alienation. Do not expect too much from others as changing behavior can be a difficult thing. Since you have more control on yourself, you can be better paid by making an effort (to change) your own behaviors as against others’.
Enabling The Child To Think And Analyze
You may be too eager to let the child realize that (even though unknowingly), he/she is hurting an innocent party. The child needs time (and opportunities) to identify the right way to go. He/she may find himself/herself at crossroads, clueless about going anywhere.
Children who have been alienated need to spend as much time as is possible with the alienated parent alone. This provides a platform for the re-development of a lost relationship. The more time children spend with an alienated parent, the greater is the likelihood that the alienation process will be taken care of. The child needs to realize that he/she will lose a good and worthy parent if the alienation continues.
This may be a time taking process where the child needs to judge the credibility and reliability of a relationship before committing for it. The child needs to make an intelligent and emotional decision which can be too tricky to come spontaneously.
Developing A Sense Of Justice
To some extent, it may seem like creating a biased feeling in the child. But it is true that due to some reason, the child could not continue with the comfort of both parents (or the other way round). This is the time to make the child aware of the need for both parents.
If directly contacting the child does not seem feasible, encourage him/her to engage with the parent’s extended family. Grandmother, aunt, uncle, etc. can also prove helpful in reversing the process of alienation.
When the child can sense injustice to the extended family of the alienated parent, the unfair rejection can be terminated. In the case of severe alienation, the alienated parents may prefer to use an intermediary for the transfer of contact with the child instead of making a direct contact.
Countering Overwhelming Alienation
When alienation is overwhelming, extreme methods may be considered. Typical methods concentrating on behavioral change may be ineffective and you may feel the need to resort to legal proceeding(s) for fair justice.
A negative attitude towards one parent can be detrimental even for the child’s development. Assuming that the alienated parent is not guilty of any abuse, keeping the child separated can be unacceptable and apt to follow the legal route.