Managing Severe Cases of Parental Alienation

I am pleased to announce my new article: Managing Severe Cases of Parental Alienation. Published by the State Bar of Texas, it includes never-before-published material previously available only through my trial testimony and consultation.

Some of the highlights:
• 3 key lessons for attorneys who represent clients whose children are at risk for becoming alienated.
• 10 drawbacks of the conventional default decision in which the court surrenders attempts to remedy severe alienation and leaves the children in the custody of the favored parent without scheduled contacts with the rejected parent.
• 3 essential ingredients to include in any recommendation or court order for counseling with severely estranged parents and children.
• Why efforts to remedy severe alienation are likely to fail when children remain in the custody of the favored parent.
• Why most expert witness opinions on remedying severe alienation are likely to be untrustworthy and may not meet legal standards of admissibility.
• 4 common errors made by professionals who lack relevant experience in remedying alienated parent-child relationships.
• A frequent strategy used by favored parents and alienated children to mislead the court into thinking that there is no need for intervention, and how this strategy backfires when framed properly for the court.
• Court orders that promote successful reconciliations.

Drawing on 90 references, this extensive article was prepared for, and is a chapter in the materials for, the State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course. It goes beyond my previous work by incorporating the results of my research and experience since I wrote the revised edition of Divorce Poison and my three articles on Family Bridges (2010).

Managing Severe Cases of Parental Alienation is indispensable for attorneys, judges, mediators, child custody evaluators, parenting coordinators, and therapists dealing with cases involving allegations of parental alienation, and for parents who want to ensure that their case has the benefit of the latest information.

The article discusses:
• characteristics, prevention, and consequences of severe parental alienation
• rationale for interventions with families with severely alienated children
• alternative options for the disposition of severe alienation cases
• the role of mental health evidence in cases involving allegations of parental alienation
• risks of interventions versus risks of maintaining the status quo
• Family Bridges workshop for severe cases of parental alienation
• severe parental alienation among young adults

Managing Severe Cases of Parental Alienation is useful to attorneys representing parents who are either alienated from their children or accused of parental alienation, to judges hearing cases with allegations of parental alienation, and to child custody evaluators, therapists, mediators, and parents involved in such difficult cases.

I regard this as my most useful and important article to date on parental alienation and I am pleased to announce its addition to our catalog.

For a collection of 15 works on parental alienation produced between 2000-2012 (13 articles and chapters plus 2 DVDs), click here.

To add the 2nd edition of Divorce Poison to the collection, click here.

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One Response to Managing Severe Cases of Parental Alienation

  1. [name withheld by administrator] says:

    [Note: Identifying details in this comment are withheld by the blog administrator to protect the family's privacy.]
    Hello Dr.

    I am certain that you will find my case very interesting but yet very sad for my children. Divorce was finalized in [date withheld by admin] and it still continues unfortunately for two once promising young children. Now [ages withheld by admin] years of age. I was accused falsely of parental alienation as the GAL informed as I did it unconsciously. My ex reallocated mainly using [a relative with law enforcement connections]. Now 6 months after the fact, he and his girlfriend who has 4 children of her own plus my two live in a rental of 1135 sq. feet and have used his own children to tape record me with promises of never having to see mommy again. [location withheld by admin.] I would suggest that gender is playing a role as I asked the GAL exactly how many cases of PAS were cases by males as opposed to females being accused. He had no answer. My guess is that it rarely happens or in [location withheld by admin], it’s the first. As no one seems to know what to do next for my children. I understand that the wheels of justice move slowly but more disturbingly is the reality that the domestic relations court system lacks the humanistic, empathy and compassion necessary to do a thorough job. We expect these characteristcs from other professionals is it too costly to mandate humanism in our DR courts? is it too costly to educate our family law practictioners? I would think not afterall what price would you pay for saving one child from the ugliness of the lack of adaptability of the current system in place? Perhaps we should look at healthcare industry. We demand from our health providers nothing less especially when it comes to our children. Why should DR courts be different? What happens in the trenches of day to day life should matter and the obstacles to get to the ” truth” which would ony help our children are more important. Continued reliance upon processes and paid representation cloud it and so it will continue unfortunately. The case is in [identifying information withheld by admin].

    Do no harm,
    [name withheld by admin]