By Amy J. L. Baker, PhD, director of research at the Vincent J. Fontana Center for Child Protection of the New York Foundling
The problem of children allying with one parent against the other has been noted for decades, yet little research has been conducted on the problem of Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) and especially what happens to the children who grow up alienated from one parent by the other parent. In the fall of 2004, such a study was conducted, the purpose of which was to ask three general questions:
- Do some alienated children grow up to figure out that they had been manipulated by one parent to forgo a relationship with the other parent?
- What are the catalysts for such a realization process?
- What are the perceived long-term effects of such an experience?
It was the aim of the study to give a voice to individuals who had been at the center of intense conflict between their parents. These are people for whom so many others have spoken but who have not yet had a chance to speak for themselves.
Forty adults participated in in-depth interviews about their experience growing up turned against one parent by the other parent. Based on the content analysis of the interviews, the following conclusions were developed:
- The children were not necessarily allying with the “better” parent – Many of the adult children of PAS experienced physical and/or sexual abuse by the alienating parent. This finding is consistent with epidemiological research on the co-occurrence of different forms of abuse. That is, parents who abuse their children in one way tend to abuse them in other ways. This finding should put to rest the idea that, when children chose sides, they are always selecting the better parent, the one more likely to be responsive to their needs.
- Alienating parents function like cult leaders – The parents who perpetrated parental alienation utilized techniques similar to those employed by cult leaders. Alienating parents were described by their adult children as using emotional manipulation strategies such as withdrawal of love, creation of loyalty binds, and cultivation of dependency. They were also described as using brainwashing techniques, such as repetition of negative statements about the targeted parents and black-and-white thinking.
- Parental alienation strategies disrupt the attachment between child and targeted parent – The adult children of PAS described 32 different parental alienation strategies their parents used. These can be considered through the lens of attachment theory, as described by John Bowlby. Within this framework, the strategies are viewed as effective tools for interfering with the developing or existing an attachment relationship between the child and the targeted parent.
- Alienating parents may have personality disorders – The descriptions of the alienating parents provided by the adult children led to the conclusion that many met the diagnostic criteria for having a personality disorder, a pervasive and distorted relational style. Narcissism was the personality disorder most likely to have been present in these families, although some of the parents might have had borderline or antisocial personalities.
- Parental alienation is a form of emotional abuse – The strategies that the alienating parents used to effectuate the alienation were emotionally abusive in and of themselves. That is, the alienating parents verbally assaulted, isolated, corrupted, rejected, terrorized, ignored, and over-pressured the children in order to alienate them from the targeted parent. These behaviors are part and parcel of what constitutes emotional abuse of children. In addition, it is proposed that separation of a child from a parent for no reason also constitutes a form of emotional abuse.
- Realization of parental alienation is a process, not an event – Realizing that one has been turned against a parent by the other parent was usually a slow and painful process. For most of the adult children of PAS, it did not occur in a single transformative event. The defense mechanisms constructed to support the alienation – denying that the alienating parent is selfish and manipulative, denying that the targeted parent has positive qualities, denying that the child wants a relationship with the targeted parent, denying that the child is afraid of losing the love of the alienating parent – take time to be broken through. Although all of the adult children interviewed for the study had come to realize that they had been alienated from one parent by the other, the length of time they had been alienated and the age at the time of the awareness varied.
- The impact of parental alienation is lifelong and may be intergenerational – PAS has negative long-term effects including depression, low self esteem, inability to trust self and others, substance abuse, and becoming alienated from one’s own children. Three different patterns of the intergenerational transmission of PAS have been identified.
These findings from this study refute three common myths about PAS:
- That parental alienation is only perpetrated by mothers against fathers – Although this was the case for many of the adult children, it was not true of all of them. In 6 of the 40 interviews, fathers were the alienating parent. Because the sample was neither random nor representative, it is not possible to calculate the actual proportion of gender in the general population of alienating parents. But it can be concluded definitively that some fathers do practice parental alienation. This was also borne out in surveys of targeted parents that produced samples that were evenly divided between mothers and fathers.
- That PAS only occurs in divorced families – While PAS was first identified as a phenomenon in the context of post-divorce custody litigation and evaluations, it is now evident that PAS can take place in intact families.
- That PAS is only effectuated by custodial parents – Again, a prototypical PAS case was a custodial mother alienating the children from their father, following a bitter divorce. However, this is not the only PAS scenario. The custodial parent has a far greater degree of access to the child in order to effectuate the alienation, but this does not preclude the possibility of alienation being perpetrated during visitation with a non-custodial parent, especially if visitation is frequent and the parent is especially effective at thought control and emotional manipulation techniques.
35 thoughts on “What the Research Says About Adult Children of PAS”
If alienating children is considered emotional abuse of those children then why do most states agree but ignore it? I asked DFS about this in my home town. They agreed and then told me there is nothing they can do about it. What’s with this? No laws? No one seems to care what it is doing to these kids? My duaghter has not talked to me in over sixteen years. She is a very angry person and has threatened a stalking charge against me if I try to contact her. I have never been in jail in my life, have no criminal record, and yet she has been pushed into thought like this? I know who is doing it but find no way to combat it. I have tried, there isn’t any.
I have been fighting this battle for 6 years with now grown children, 24 and 21 years of age. Their father holds them hostage emotionally and financially being that he was the primary ‘bread winner’ of the family. He has not taken care of his responsibilities with respect to my alimony and back pay of child support. He has remarried and has financially supported two other college aged children. My children have been ‘taken’ from me physically and emotionally at various times in their late teen years. Even after her father and his new wife ‘threw’ my daughter out of their home in garbage bags and I literally had to build her a room in my small apartment, she still takes his side when his negative effects ‘wear off’. I would imagine he gives them an option of ‘it’s her or you’….and ultimately they choose themselves. My son, who missed his own grandfathers funeral, after being estranged from me for 2 1/2 years is now defending his father who is crying to him/them that I am pursuing him in family court for what he owes me. If I ever, in the past, brought up our divorce my children would tell me it isn’t their fight and to please not discuss it with them. Now, at the eleventh hour, even after me compromising and compromising ,(which I certainly never had to do) in family court(to try to keep some semblance of sanity) and allowing him to lessen the payments………he has convinced them that I am not only the aggressor but the enemy.
Children don’t side with the abusive parent because they don’t want to be abused and they are afraid that they will lose that parent. The kinder, saner parent is less of a threat and is forced to bear this burden. I am at my wits end. This syndrome must be brought into the foreground in Family Law. The emotional wreckage is unmeasurable.
What I would love to know about grown children with PAS is this:
how do you convince a grown child that the non-custodial parent did not abandon them. How do you connect with a grown PAS child?
I have two adult children. My son (36) is not as bad as my daughter. I have somewhat of a relationship with him. My daughter (34) I have no relationship with. We have not spoken or seen each other in 6 months. and then I have only seen her 3 times for a total of 2 hours last few years. There father is now deceased. We made amends to each other before he died of a drug overdose. I came across this website by chance. I immediately realized what it was I had been looking for all of these years but couldn’t prove it. I desperately need help in how to resolve this so that I can have the relationship that my children and I deserve to have. Any help or suggestions would greatly be appreciated.
There are a few API resources that may be of help. First, here are a few additional articles about PAS from TheAttachedFamily.com:
You can also obtain a login to the API Forums here: http://www.attachmentparenting.org/forums/. After obtaining a login and password, please visit the Divorce and Custody Forum. The Forums are moderated by API Leaders, so you can ask questions and get more information and assistance. This is a restricted forum; once you login to the main forum page, you will see special instructions on the Divorce and Custody Forum about how to gain access.
I hope this information is helpful.
My wife divorced me after 27 years of marriage. My daughters were 18 and 22 at the
time. We had just moved to a new location, which was chosen by all of them. After
being there for 4 months my wife just seemed to give up on why she wanted to come
out here, and seemed to just trash our relationship and just everything else. She be-
came manipulative with my daughters and basically they developed a completely
different attitude toward me. Suddenly they were involved in groups and go to therapy.
It seemed that everything I did, and was doing , was open for analysis and revision.
After being there for 23 years as a father, and often being called, ” a great dad”, now
I’m not a great dad and I haven’t seen my daughters in nearly a year.
It seems the course of her divorce it became necessary for her to eliminate me as a
father as well. I’m devastated and heartbroken. After 23 years of being a dad, now
I’m not even worth acknowledging on Father’s Day. After the divorce my daughters
have been going to therapy, but it seems that therapy has driven them further from
me. My younger daughter sent me a note telling me she doesn’t want any contact
with me. I ask why, but I still don’t get an answer. My wife took out a restraining
order out on me based on bogus claims. She took me to court twice and said I
violated the order. She said I sent unauthorized and emotional emails. The emails
had nothing to do with her, and they were not angry emails from me, they were
emails from me asking why my daughters have turned from me..asking for some
insight. She will tolerate me bringing them up. Heartbreaking.
My ex husband is obsessed & I believe he would rather my daughter destroy herself (& she’s doing that in many ways) than to beloved & love someone else, especially me, who he’s determined to try to continue to hurt. I am so afraid things will never be okay for her, & if they’re not ok for her, they won’t be for me, ever, really. Praying for a miracle. Please develop literature for teens about Parental Alienation & psychological abuse.
Take heart. My boyfriends ex did this to her two kids. One Boy, one girl. Living in different states he could only see them a few times a year. Mom threw everything but the kitchen sink at him trying to alienate the kids. It worked while they were young because mom made their lives a nightmare if they didn’t go along, but my boyfriend saved every phone bill, every email, every legal document to prove to these kids what had happened to them and now they call him for advice and support, they come for visits of their own accord. They hate what their mom did and they struggle to understand what happened. It was hell but my guy didn’t give up and it’s paying off. He is growing close with his adult children who are now in their 20’s and they constantly share information unprovoked about the craziness of what they are going through with their mom as adults. As ugly as she was to alienate her children she is now directing that ugly at her adult children.
People who alienate a child from a parent are generally “off” center. Those thought processes and mental issues don’t disappear when the kids become adults. Eventually the children become the victims of the warped mind of a person capable of such disturbing behavior as alienation. Just keep trying. Hopefully you will live to see the benefits of your efforts.
I am an adult child of parental alienation. My Dad missed seeing my brother and I grow up. My Mom married our step-father when I was 4 and my brother was 2. During the 8 years they were married we called our step-father dad and in school we were named after him. It wasn’t until I was 12 that I was told my step-father wasn’t my dad and that they were getting a divorce. My Mom didn’t even try to keep the connection with our step-father and refused to talk about our biological father.
It wasn’t until I was 16 that my biological dad hired an investigator to find us. Unfortunately, he lived across the states from us so our visits were infrequent.
My Mom always told horrible stories about my Dad. However once I got to know my dad, I realized they weren’t true. My Dad was always very kind and thoughtful.
My Dad recently passed away and now I not only mourn him but I also mourn the memories that I never had the opportunity to have with him as a child. I only have one memory of my Dad as a toddler and that is an outright shame!
Parental Alienation has a lifelong affect on children. I would know, I will be turning 46 next month.
My adult child has now for the past 4 years been told by her absentee father that the reason he was not in her life is my fault. He list several lies, my daughter without verifying the facts as they really are, had estranged herself from me for 4 long years. There’s nothing I can do or say to change her mind, even if she stop to listen. 🙁
I went through this myself with my three kids that are now grown. I had custody for along time while my ex worked on the kids during visitations. He went to court and had them tell the court I was abusing them(no proof). They now admit that the only one that abused them was their father and things are getting better but it is a slow process. There are still things that they are unwilling or unable to admit to right now. I just keep telling them I love them. My best advice would be to counteract your child’s anger with patience and love. At some point when there anger is being meet with kindness they start to realize things and soften to you. God bless each of my fellow targeted parents. I’ll pray for you.
I am a Dad who never knew what PAS was until I experienced it first hand. I raised my kids. I was there for every first step, every first word. I even quit touring so that my children would know their father. No regrets there. My ex however, would not come home at night sometimes because she was too drunk to drive home. She would spend the night with her female boss/friend. My ex has a strange connection to this female friend/ boss. The two of them have essentially tried to totally control my kids. They control where they attend college, where they work, what they drive, and are now trying to determine who they date.
My ex has gone to lengths that would take up too much space to fully explain here, but here are a few examples. My son recently got married and my ex sent out invitations to my family that only listed her as his parent. She has done this on other public event programs as well. My ex tells everyone who will listen that I was never there. I could have proven this wrong in court but I chose not to put my kids through that and settled. My ex had my kids tell me that I was never there. All of my kids have since apologized, but they are still very much “mom” leaning.
My oldest daughter was forced to choose between an event she & I had already planned and one that her mother sprung on her. My daughter hinted that she would never hear the end of it, if she didn’t choose her mother’s side. I let it go.
It’s been painful to live through, but I am determined to not punish my kids for what their mother has chosen to do. 3 of my 4 are legal adults now, but in many ways, they are still kids. I have told them that nothing will stop me from loving them and that they do not have to meet any criteria in order for me to love them. I can’t do anything about my ex except patiently wait for her actions to catch up with her. And they will. I took none of the possessions, house or money in the divorce and even traded a 401K for more time with my kids. Deep down my kids know and I will just have to trust that all that “raisin” will not be lost. What my ex has done and is doing is pure evil. I just can’t say that to my kids. She’s still their mother. Please parents, do NOT do this to your kids. I told my ex to come up with a different way to punish me and I would sign the paper, if that’s what she really wanted, but to please just lay off the kids. She showed no emotion whatsoever. God help my children be whole one day.
I Identify with each story but especially to Ted.
When we divorced our daughters were 5, 13 and 15. They are now 21, 28 and 30. I went through the same types of experiences as all of you. At the time it was the year 2000 when the alienation started. I had no idea what was going on with my children….even when I discovered there was a term for it…PAS …I brought it to the court mediators attention and she politely smiled and said “I dont think that’s what’s going on here”. Consequently at age 16 she was given the choice to discontinue visitation with me which she chose to do. Her Father had given her a cell phone and his parents gave her a Lexus….
So both her Father and his parents worked in unison to alienate my girls from me. He took me to court to take my girls for 6 years.
Although my younger two daughters have grown and see now how their Father is…Im not sure if they would admit they were victims of his Alienation..t but have figured out they they did choose to have a relationship with their Mother and it hhs healed year by year and now us very loving.
He still trashes me to his girls….but they have learned to stand up to him some degree.
However the damage it has done to my 30 year old daughters phsyche is criminal…she has an emotional detachment to all of her family and friends and has struggled with low self esteem and depression…the loyalty she has to her Father and his parents is deep. They now just bought her a house…its Incredibly sad. Ive been waiting for her to return to me for 15 years… She does not have any healthy relationship s and she has alienated herself from her sisters….
We wont give up on her but at this point it seems the only event that my change her attitude is the death of either her Father and/or grandparents….
I am an adult who went through this with my parents.
Both parents told me the other had a personality disorder. My mom hinted that my dad sexually abused me. My dad told me my mother was abusive. I ended up living with my father who made jokes constantly about my mother and told me she ‘was incapable of loving me’. Eventually I went back to my mother’s house where she then talked about how perverted my father was.
I am finally in my thirties now and do not have much of a relationship with either. It was advised to me at 14 that I should try and get out if I could from both relationships by a therapist. I wish I had listened to him then.
Are there any resources or special types of doctors who can help me? Unfortunately both my parents worked in psyche and I have very little trust of the system.
I am so numb and confused right now listening to all these stories because my children who are now in their late teens are so confused about what happened to me and their father. After endless searching I found my children and they were so happy to finally speak to me. But everything changed when they questioned my ex. The only real answer was he kept me from them. Everything else he told them was a lie. They read it for themselves and still seeing the paperwork they found at his house didn’t change there minds about how he took off and kept me from them. I just wish they knew how much my life stopped when they disappeared and the courts gave him all the rights to do it. I feel so bad for my children because they never should have experienced such a horrible trama in their lives. I hope one day they can forgive me for not being there to raise them and give them all the love and support they needed. It’s so ridiculous how an abusive relationship can continue to work as long as the abusers have the children, man or woman. This is a horrible time for children and the Family Courts.
One more thing fighting in court for your children only works to save them if the people there care about the well-being of children. If they choose the abuser over the protective parent then it is a strong possibility to lose all custody of your children and from my experience even if you find them later, the damage has been done, so you the parent might have lot custody forever even when it is the children’s choice to see you and build a relationship. I was told that it was too late, move on and forget about them by one of my children. That hurt deeper than any knife in my heart. But I hope that with time this attitude towards me will change and that I will one day be with my children again. My heart goes out to all of the loving parents who miss there children and want them back in there lives.♡♡♡
My four siblings and I endured this abuse from the hands of my mother, who I just call Deborah now. Unfortunately, only I was able to completely salvage my relationship with my father, and only due to my decision to leave home and join the Marine’s. Distancing myself from Deborah opened my eyes to the heart ache and pain she put my family through, and it seems unfair that my Dad had to gracefully endure her wrath for over 20 years. It is my greatest goal to break the cycle and rise above the devastation, and so far, the outlook seems bright. I wish I could say that for my siblings, but half still live at home with Deborah, nearly middle aged, unmarried, no college degree, and seemingly unhappy.
I hope others with similar stories can find some sort of serenity in knowing that they’re not alone, and that if we face this problem, we can certainly overcome!
May we all overcome.
I have been subjected to this for 8 yrs so far with my now 13 yr old daughter. I have had no contact for 2yrs. Guys everybody needs to wake up and realize nothing will be done until courts force mothers to Co parent and communicate as well. It is all about the child support
It is ironic that the alienator in my case was not the custodial parent of my children. Their father was diagnosed formally as a narcassist. I wish I knew how significant that diagnosis was back in 2000. I thought it was his problem…boy was I wrong! After years of him torturing, abusing and emotionally attacking me while I attempted to co-parent my children with him, my children are now grown – 22 years old and twins who are 20. I have recently remarried very happily to a man with no mental illness. However, my ex was so injured with this, he has managed to turn my children against me by saying that I abandoned my children, which couldn’t be further from the truth. My new husband has been extremely good to my kids and opened new doors for them experiencing healthy relationships. However, my children no longer talk to me now and are very disrespectful to me and my husband. After I have received counseling about bullying and cult-like tacticts used by the alienating parents, I have come to the conclusion that I must remove myself from the games and abuse orchestrated by my children’s father. My children are now young adults and though I tried to protect them from the psychological abuse and manipulation when they were young, they are now young adults and must come to their own conclusions and I have to remove myself from the toxic manipulations of their father. By removing myself and not engaging in competition for their attention, I am protecting them from further abuse. Once I disengage, their father no longer has to undermine, belittle and lie to gain their affections. He wins and everyone loses- but only temporarily until they mature enough to independently evaluate the circumstances and come to their independent conclusions about the obvious realities before them. I am sympathetic to all alienated parents, but I do believe that karma is a *itch. Their evil tactics will eventually be questioned by a higher power. I am a firm believer that good overcomes evil. Our children – even if they are adults- deserve love from us, too. I hope one day I can have that with mine.
I am the alientated parent from 1992 when I asked my gay ex husband to move out. I was married 13 years and used to give him children. He was emotionally abusive to me and I initiated the divorce. He started in on the kids ASAP, if he got aids he got it from me, as he knew I had an affair toward the end of my marriage. I didn’t know that narcissitic personalities go along with the reasons of the one who is alienating the children. It’s now 2016. I have no relationship with my 35 mentally ill son for three years and my 33 year old daughter came back superficially for a year after attending a Landmark Forum workshop. The change didn’t last long. The Forum encourages you to call an estranged person in your life, so she called me, but she has not worked through what happened in our divorce as it was a battle to get custody. Finally, at age 14 she moved out and the damage was done, as he bad mouthed me, took her to events which embraced his gay life style. She has a problem with men always finding men old enough to be her father and she and I are not close. Even having had cancer, my son didn’t contact me and when I see the girl, it’s always for a brief visit. I can’t get close to her and she sees what her father did. The damage is done and unfortunately I don’t think there is any answer. We have to take care of ourselves or make ourselves sick trying to undo something which seems impossible to do. It’s as if they have to hate someone or they are being unfaithful to the parent who alienated us. Prayers for all.
Okay. So what do you do when the father, for 15+ years, sat in a basement and basically drank EVERY SINGLE NIGHT. Mom takes care of everything. Not much of relationship building situation between Dad and kids. Kids are 10 and 13. Dad demands divorce as he has decided to woo a married woman with 2 kids, one of which is friends with our 13 year old daughter. In the meantime, has racked up a 200K line of credit (Mom is now responsible for 1/2 of that!) The whole affair between the kid’s Dad and other woman goes down like the Emperor’s New Clothes yet “Dad”, throughout separation denies that relationship, issues blame in front of the children that the mother is the reason for the divorce, threatens the children that they cannot live in their home and regularly, comes on to the mother, many times in front of the children who also, speak up to the father to leave the mother alone. He is a functioning alcoholic and uber successful financially, no criminal charges, comes from a family of vast wealth…Fast forward to 1 year after the divorce. Kids are now 12 and 15. You bet I have no kind words for my ex or the other woman. Kids rarely want to see him and this is my fault? He has every other weekend and 1x/week. He has NEVER exercised his 1x/week. The kids are older and don’t feel like going back and forth to his house (which they rarely did since D day anyway). So now, Ex has filed a court case threatening for sole custody of kids, threatens to remove them from their home to live with him. Threatens that Mom will only be allowed to contact them 1x/day by phone and never after 9 pm IF he wins and we all know what a crap shoot court can be.
I have spoken to grown children who have survived high conflict divorces where they have decided where they wanted to live when they were young and chosen non or minimal communication with the other parent and they are FINE. Divorce in itself means choices and these kids have to make a choice to leave one parent to see another under the best of circumstances. Sometimes relationships between kids and parents don’t work… kinda like divorced parents… go figure. Just because you are a parent doesn’t mean you “deserve” or can expect unconditional love and when it doesn’t come, throw the PAS label at the custodial parent.
The alienating parent high conflict personality type is aided by the state in your local halls of justice where a lie about abuse such as “I feel threatened” is acted upon without question as standard procedure.
In an effort to keep people safe with restraining orders a temporary but legally binding order is granted by little more than a request of a supposedly threatened person. Now a high conflict dishonest personality disordered can victimize who ever they decide to target, no questions asked.
If things like physical evidence, or due process was really the standard of conduct then alienating parents wouldn’t have the ability to unjustly influence rulings.
You’d think the truth matters in court. Nope.
Rights, due process? You’re kidding right?
Our courts are corrupt beyond measure, & without oversight.
They’re so bad that if the truth was known it might trigger a revolt of the masses.
Let’s pose a new twist to ANY upcoming, tenacious lawyers out there and what they could do as a whole body and execute some stiff penalties for the alienating parent or any other family member who alienates children from a parent. For starters put in a grandfather clause so that the offender (any family member)has to pay for any physiological needs of the children, at the family classes you have to take when divorcing have a legal binding document both parents sign, notorize it, make it binding! Secondly the court system should monitor this so closely there is no way out for the alienating parent and or family member. Thirdly take out the no fault. If you step out of the marriage you get nothing….no alimony, no half of any property value, especially pensions or any claims to Social Security of the others spouses…that would help the system tremendously. And finally put such a stiff penalty on PAS that it hurts the adult not the children.
All the talk about children needing their Fathers and for that matter both parents is true. Having been alienated from my 3 daughters has been a terrible experience and everyday you hope one of the shows up or calls. That what keeps us as parents going. So with all of that said Fathers and Mothers love you children. Shame on you if you don’t.
Down at the halls of justice only some types of abuse are taken seriously. Like alienation false allegations aren’t an issue either. Why? Because the court services that support the decisions made down at the halls of justice recieve funding for child support, a kick back. So it pays to separate a man from his kids because the higher the support order the bigger the kickback.
Why are you beating your self. If these children are old enough and the courts are allowing it and the kids know the truth, and do not care then lay the blame on them. If you have done everything you can do , then do not allow the other parent or child lay the blame on you. Instead be assured that when they need you and the parent turn on them they will be back maybe not today or even tomorrow,but when the parent can’t buy them be assured they will come to you with their blame of the other parent a teenager knows who their real parent is and who cares, they will play just like the other parent does now. quit playing the blame game.This has alway’s been play mom and dad against each other. I am begging to other parent or child, they have just as much to lose or more as I do.
1 more thing if you want to do something about it.Then start where it came from to begin with. Write letters to the court name names, congress, state reps. etc. Thank them for allowing your child’s other parent and the child was allowed make the decision and if you could have done better by the child, name names and tell the them exactly what they did for your child how it destroyed their lives, I can’t do anything now ,but maybe it will help bring it to their attention and give someone else hope.I plan to do this with every child i hear of that has grown up in this mess. And I will not let mine lay the blame on me. When he complains to me I tell him you wanted this I did not.
My step daughter was convinced her father wasn’t invovled in her life because her mother somehow brainwashed her into forgetting years of us visiting in her house. (They wouldn’t let us leave with her until she was about 7).
When she turned 10 we had finally moved to be near her. 2 months later her mom decided to move 2,000 miles away across the US. A relocation battle ensued, and she lost – bad. Sadly she still lives there, 3 years later. She’s evaded child support enforcement, moved three times, kept her address from us while stating it was “because she was concerned for her safety” instead of evading support. She still has some pipe dream that she can pay a lawyer to make it all go away and move her daughter up there, she’s almost14 now.
Instead of coming to an agreement on a Parenting Plan she has been stubborn, blocked his number and email, and refuses to try and come to an agreement on at LEAST a temporary plan so she can see her daughter. Instead, she’d rather instill lies in her head.
– Somehow her daughter STILL thinks that it’s somehow our fault that she’s separated from her mother, as if she were moved away from her mother instead of her mother moving away from her. She one time wrote a letter to her mom saying “I realized it’s been 3 years since they took me.” She was LEFT, but doesn’t see it that way. She defends her and says that her job is more important now in that state, a job with a completely different company than the one she moved up there and had originally obtained ($11 hr). –
She still insists that this environment is better, no matter that her ENTIRE family is here, even her new husbands family lives here. She never had a chance. Especially now that she’s spent so many years voluntarily away from her child because she was so convinced that she would be right and catered to.
If you’re dealing with a Narcissist, just remember, ‘Its Chess Not Checkers.’ They will play themselves into a corner because they truly believe themselves to be smarter than you, and luckier than you.
I have no way of knowing if Pas / Gas is keeping my grown sons reluctant to stay in touch. I think their mother’s memory and living with their aged grandmother was and is interfering. Sixteen years and on it goes. I hate that not even my family encourages them to address the lack of affection.
I have lived with the effects of PAS for 22 years now. My oldest daughter now 30 may never be able to pick back up until her mother dies. This has been my thought. I cannot leave this site without commenting to the heinousness of the Justice for Children organization in Houston, Texas, with branches elsewhere. They did this to my daughter and to me believing they were God Sent and repudiated the fact that PAS exists calling it a “ruse a make predator parent will use to get custody”. If you want to help me sue them out of existence, I would accept donations.
I’ve been manipulated out of my daughter’s life by actions of her mother and a very aware judge who seemed to encourage adversarial relationships. 23 yrs later I found my daughter. I began to c how my absence, the failed 2nd marriage of her mom and my daughter typical signs of low self-esteem, disconnectedness from emotional attachment, compromised self-image, and other behaviors that manifested from a lacking supportive father figure. She always tries to please but becomes stressed when dealing w emotional issues, more like her mom was during our marriage. I felt it not gud to tell my daughter the truth about the PAS actions of her mom, but after doing research in the newly classified syndrome suggestions say telling the child in a non accusatory way is better. I began to share this w my daughter, w mixed results as this is a process I’m allowing her navigate. Also, I have been relieved emotionally by not operating under a dark cloud w my daughter. She defensive about her mom who unfortunately suffers from a psychosomatic illness, and is using this condition to further guilt our daughter into emotional compliance. My daughter continues to get encouragement and financial support regardless of her resistance to the truth of the past and it’s consequence. I’m not as hurt after many years being the alienated parent, but least now I hav hope my daughter and i can escape the bondage of psychological and emotional abuse of her mom.
Looking for information on how to help an adult son
now 22 realize he was the victim of Parental Alienation by his father.
He has rejected me, his aunts,uncle and grandmother on my side using the strangest of excuses. Now tells me his father’s affair and departure was my fault. I had no knowledge and was unaware of my ex-husband’s Narcissism. I only learned about this other side after he left for another woman and “devalued” me.
Thus began a decade long campaign to tell my son how he never “got along with mom” even though the opposite had been true.
I just learned about Parental Alienation Syndrome and my heart is broken.
In 2008 I had to file for divorce after 13 years of marriage because my ex-wife was so emotionally abusive to me. I spent years ignoring the emotional abuse and tried to resolve the problems with her over the course of that marriage only to come to the conclusion that she didn’t and never wanted peace and harmony in our family.
After I filed for divorce, I found out that she suffered from a Personality Disorder called Cluster “B” which explained so many things. Narcissistic and antisocial behavior in ones soul is like dealing with the devil on steroids in Family Court when trying to save your children. The Court favors the abuser and allows these cases to go on for years with plenty of money in lawyer time. Everyone profits with no care about what emotionally is happening to the children. The ex gets big money in child support and uses that against you.
In the California Family Court system, “Best interest of the child” means there is a winner and a loser parent. Usually the loser is the parent with more resources (money) so it drives the case for years, enriching the court professionals. In the alternative, you can bribe the Judge. (Ask your lawyer how to do it) They know.
Out of my 4 boys I was able to salvage my oldest son that knows the truth but lost the other 3 boys to her wickedness.
Now 9 years later, I haven’t seen my 3 boys for the last 6 years and Iv’e come to the realization that I may never see them again even though they live across town.
Even if I saw them, I’m not sure I would want anything to do with them because of their upbringing with such a evil person.
I believe in life that how you were parented is everything about who you are as an adult and the cycle of abuse will continue.
This is a sad outcome for these children and myself but I’m being realistic about who these people are today.
I hope I am wrong and will be reunited with adult children that understand, right from wrong.
To all that deal with PAS, be prepared for what you might get back if your child returns from such a deranged parents upbringing.
Good luck and always take care of yourself by making life great and loving yourself and remember that in your pursuit of your loving children, there may not be any there, there!