When parents in California split, many decide to continue co-parenting. This is not possible for every family, though. Some families are able to get by with sole custody and visitation arrangements. But you may find yourself dealing with surprising conflict in these situations.
One hurdle you may come up against is parental alienation. This affects your child’s mental health. It can also impact your parent-child relationship.
What is parental alienation?
The Psychiatric Times examines how to treat and prevent parental alienation. Parental alienation occurs when one parent turns a child against the other parent. If your child is a victim of this tactic, you may notice a few things. This includes your child:
- Showing sudden reluctance to visit or spend time with you
- Loudly declaring a preference for your co-parent
- Claiming that you are “bad” but struggling to explain why when asked
- Parroting back information fed to them from another source
Seeking signs in behavior
These differences stand out when you had a positive relationship with your child. In a household with no instances of abuse, the sudden switch in behavior is an easy one to notice.
Pay attention to the way your co-parent behaves, too. Keep an eye out for potential manipulative tactics. A favored parent can use many different alienating behaviors to influence your child. Some are harder to spot than others. For example, your co-parent may choose to blatantly lie about how you feel toward your child. But sometimes, they can fabricate evidence. They may go to extreme lengths to create a convincing “reason” for a child to dislike you.