When Kids Need to Know Bad Things About a Parent
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Divorce Poison, Table of Contents


A Note to the Reader

Introduction: Stealing the Soul

1. The Delicate Balance

The United Front • When Silence Is Not Golden • How to Distinguish between Helpful and Harmful Criticism

2. Bad-Mouthing, Bashing, and Brainwashing

Bad-mouthing • Bashing • Brainwashing • Parental Alienation Syndrome • Children Who Resist Divorce Poison

3. Alienated Children

The Hate Campaign • Trivial Explanations for the Hatred • False Abuse Accusations • Polarizing Parents: Saints and Sinners • Parroting Adults • Declaration of Independence • Hatred by Association • Alienation Without Divorce Poison • Justified Alienation • Child-Driven Alienation • Understanding the Roots of Alienation • Is It Alienation or Not? • False Accusations of Parental Alienation

4. Malignant Motives

Poor Boundaries • Revenge • Narcissism • Guilt • Insecurity • Seeking Validation • Holding On with Hate • Paranoia • Reenactments • Hostility Toward the Children • Custody Litigation • Preventing Alienation During Custody Litigation • Remarriage

5. The Alienating Environment

Isolation • Relocation • Kidnapping • Stripping • Fear

6. The Corruption of Reality

The Name Game • Repetition • Selective Attention • Judging Behavior Out of Context • Exaggeration • Lies Concealing Contrary Facts • Revisionist History • The Total Change Theory • Suggestions and Innuendos • Exploitation • Projection • Rationalization • Holier Than Thou • With God on Our Side • "The Truth" • Overindulgence • Encroachment • Cloak and Dagger • Cognitive Dissonance • Conspiracy • Tamper-Resistant Packaging

7. Poison Control

Empathy • The Power of Indirect Communication • Fly on the Wall • Two Steps Removed • Using Third Parties • Strike While the Iron Is Cold • Creating Bridges • Healing Experiences • Memorializing the Positive • The Way We Were • Sowing Seeds in the Psyche • Vacations • Divide and Conquer: The Value of Separating Siblings • Contagion Control: Helping Children Stay Neutral • With God on Our Side-Revisited • Agree to Disagree • No One's Perfect • Think for Yourself • Brainwashing 101 • Films and Television • Become a Better Parent • Avoid Common Errors • Damage Control • Ann Landers's Reconciliation Day

8. Getting Professional Help

When to Call the Therapist • How Therapy Can Help • How You Can Help Your Therapist • Selecting Therapists • Conditions of Treatment • Child Custody Evaluations • Options for Healing Damaged Parent-Child Relationships • Hiring an Attorney

9. Letting Go

When to Let Go • How to Let Go • Staying Touch after Letting Go • New Bridges • Alienated Children as Adults • Reconnecting with Adult Alienated Children • Coping with the Loss • Hope for the Future

Afterword: Restoring Lost Identities and Lost Relationships




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"Dr. Warshak has taken a very complex issue that plagues thousands of divorced families and provided valuable insight and suggestions. It's clear that he has a very good understanding of alienation and its impact on children and has many practical, down-to-earth suggestions for parents, children, and divorce professionals. I'd highly recommend this book."
~ Philip Stahl, Ph.D.

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