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Parental alienation can be a major child custody problem

On Behalf of | Jan 6, 2023 | child custody

When you settled your divorce in a California court, the judge may have issued orders regarding your children. Both you and their other parent likely signed the documents. At that moment, you both became obligated to adhere to the terms of your child custody agreement.

If your relationship with your ex is contentious, you might encounter problems regarding your child custody plan. Maybe your former spouse has vowed to get revenge against you for past marital issues or because you were the one who filed for a divorce. If you’re seeing signs that your ex is trying to turn your kids against you, you might have a parental alienation problem on your hands.

What exactly is parental alienation?

In many cases, when one parent is trying to ”get back” at the other for issues associated with a divorce, the angry parent might intentionally try to isolate the children from their other parent. Even if there is a child custody order in place, a parent who is systematically trying to turn kids against their other parent might disregard the terms of the agreement.

It’s important to be able to recognize signs of parental alienation and to know where to seek support to help resolve such issues. Remember, a child custody order is legally enforceable. A judge can rule a parent in contempt for disregarding the court’s orders.

5 signs that your ex is trying to alienate you from your children

The following list includes red flag issues that suggest a parental alienation scheme might be unfolding after a divorce:

  • Your ex is telling the kids lies about you, including, perhaps, that you don’t love them or that you blame them for your divorce.
  • You never hear from your children when they are with their other parent because he or she does not allow them to contact you.
  • Your ex does not allow your children to have photos of you or to mention your name when they are with him or her.
  • Your kids have given you the cold shoulder.
  • Your ex is telling your kids that you are an unfit parent or that they are in danger when they are with you.

Children are easily influenced by the adults in their lives. Once kids are taught to believe that a parent is ”bad,” it can be quite difficult to convince them otherwise.

Acting swiftly is usually the best way to resolve a parental alienation issue

You hopefully executed a detailed plan when you wrote out terms for child custody in your divorce. If your ex is disobeying the terms that he or she agreed to in writing, you can ask the court to intervene to enforce the custody order.

Helping children recover from a parental alienation scheme can be difficult. You should not hesitate to tap into local resources that might be able to assist your family, such as a community support group or licensed counseling.