When Kids Need to Know Bad Things About a Parent
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Translated excerpt taken from the Israeli decision:

8. The term PAS was first coined by the American psychiatrist, Prof. Richard Gardner fifteen years ago. He was the first to systematically relate to the various phenomena that became apparent in children in the context of parental conflictâ particularly within the context of custody issues. Prof. Gardner defined the syndrome as a disturbance whose primary manifestation is found in the denigration or alienation of the child vis aâ vis one of his parents in the absence of any justification (Gardner, R.A. (1998). The Parental Alienation Syndrome, Second Edition. Cresskill, NJ: Creative Therapeutics, Inc).

One can certainly assume that the syndrome existed even in the pastâ before Prof. Gardner methodically described and related to it Se for example the subject of Civil Appeal 4/77 John Doe vs. Jane Doe Supreme Court Decisions 33 393 (3). The facts there describe the existence of the syndrome however before Prof. Gardner coined the concept and described the phenomena (see also Civil Appeal 319/54 D.G. vs. H.G. Supreme Court decisions 11 261). The increase in the number of marriages ending in divorce, coupled with the fact that more and more fathers have begun to wage battles over the custody and visitation of their children have exposed the phenomenon of parental alienation. The expression of the syndrome is found, among other things, in the refusal of the child to maintain contact with one of the parents. Hence derives the use of the term "contact refusal" which is synonymous to parental alienation, even though the former is but one of the characteristics of the syndrome (for a detailed review on the development of the topic, in addition to Prof. Gardnerâs book, see the two-part article: Rand, D.C. "The Spectrum of Parental Alienation Syndrome" 15 American Journal of Forensic Psychology (1997). It should be noted that the syndrome manifests primarily as alienation of the child vis aâvis the non-custodial parent (nonetheless, see the case of Family Appeal (Tel Aviv) 99/70 John Doe vs. Jane Doe (not published). There are those who have construed the syndrome as a set of psychological kidnapping of the child (Bergman, Z.B. & Wietztum, E. (1995) Parental kidnapping and parental alienation syndrome. Sichot (Hebrew) 9(2) 115-130 and Family Appeal (Tel Aviv) 33/96 John Doe vs. Jane Doe (not published) section 8. The request to appeal this decision was denied: Civil Appeal 8689/99 John and Jane Doe vs. States Attorney (not published)).

According to the learned Bergman and Weitztum, various psychological methods are brought to bear on the child to sever him from the refused parent and cause him to develop a dependence on the alienating parent.(ibid., see also Levita, Z. et al. (1997) Contact refusal: Parent-child conflict in separation and divorce. Sichot (Hebrew), 11(2) 100-106.) As is known, in conflicts between parents where children are involved, consideration must be given to the childâs wishes (see for example Civil Appeal 740/87 John Doe vs. Jane Doe, Supreme Court Decisions 43 661(1)). The problem becomes more complicated when the syndrome is present because the wish of the child is the perverted product of the influences to which the child is subject on the part of the alienating parent (Family Appeal (Tel Aviv) 33/96, Section 5 subsections 38-44; Family Appeal (Tel Aviv) 90/97 ibid. section 11). Prof. Gardner delineated different degrees of severity of the syndrome: mild, moderate and severe (Gardner, ibid. chapter 10). Gardnerâs position is that when dealing with the severe cases of alienation, it is necessary to remove the child from the custody of the alienating parent to the custody of the refused parent. Gardner adds and notes that immediate transfer of the child to the refused parent in cases of severe alienation is difficult. In his opinion, this problem is solved by the immediate transfer of the child to a third party who will prepare the child for transfer to the refused parent (ibid. page 375 and on.).

9. At the outset, we noted that in 1997 around the time of the parental separation, the mother complained of sexual abuse by the father of the minor child M. It has been previously noted that two professionals, a psychiatrist and a psychologist, who investigated the matter, reached the conclusion that there was no sexual abuse as claimed. The police closed the file. It should be noted that false claims of abuse, including sexual abuse, are one of theßfeatures of the syndrome (Gardner, ibid. J.M. Bone & M.R. Walsh "Parental Alienation Syndrome: How to Detect it and What to Do About It" 73 Florida Bar Journal 44, 45 (1999)).

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