Why are you estranged from your parents

The alienation of children is usually the result of a psychological process set in motion by constant influencing (brainwashing), the consequence of which is the severance of any relationship to the person who is only experienced in the text and which can hardly be reversed Target parent is We then speak of a »Parental Enemy Syndrome« or in the term originally introduced by the child psychiatrist RA Gardner, »Parental Alienation Syndrome« (PAS)2 »Allenation« means alienation, but it means, more precisely translated, to make the child alienated from the other parent

The PAS is receiving increasing attention in the American courts' decisions on custody, because the alienation of the children from the other parent by preventing contact has long since caught up with the allegations of sexual abuse that had dominated the courts up until then. This has now also achieved us, so that the treatise printed here, written from the practice of a custody expert and a lawyer for family law and slightly abbreviated and edited compared to the original version, comes at the right time. It not only describes the background and context of the alienation of children as we know them. Rather, the authors point out in a very pragmatic way the necessity and the specific possibilities of an intervention starting at an early stage

Based on their practical experience, the authors direct the attentive reader to the three requirements for such a thing, which are explained in more detail in the following translationTimely intervention by means of four-fold, graduated measures - because the translator notes that they are scattered in the text - so that an alienation between child and parent that can hardly be reversed does not occur in the first place. These are - in a separate chapter - the family system approach and the avoidance ofDead points or standstill points, including the speechlessness of those involved in such cases, and close cooperation between the courts and experts, therapists and lawyers. After the Child Rights Reform Act (KindRG), which came into force on July 1, 1998, legally safeguards the child's relationships with both parents, but also with other caregivers who are important for his or her development, in the future the main thing will be a sentence based on Art 2 GG established paradigm shift, the primary responsibility of separated or divorced parents to care for and bring up their children must be negotiated. In doing so, the insights and experiences from American legal practice will be of value to us, where we can start to effectively counter alienation of children or the Parental Allenation Syndrome from the outset. The PAS will soon become a familiar abbreviation for us as well.

As a result of the translation of the essay, carried out in consultation with the authors, for the first time a further German-language psychological-legal source of knowledge and quotations on this topic of general interest, which is so important for the well-being of the child, is available.

I Assembled case from real examples

The parents of Amy (ten years old) and Kevin (seven years old) are divorcing after 13 years of marriage. Their father has moved out of the marital home. He is authorized to deal with the children every other weekend and one evening during the week Soon the children refuse to go with him, they say they are afraid to go. When the father comes to the house, the mother says that she "does not want to force the children to go. Intercourse is her business" and she will "Do not interfere in your decision"

Anything, doctor visits, or an invitation from a friend, acts as an excuse to avoid visits. When asked, children say, "Dad is mean to us." When asked to give specific examples, their stories are not convincing. These children are about to become estranged from their father

1 definitions

Parental alienation is the creation of a singular relationship between a child and one parent, to the exclusion of the other parent. The fully estranged child is a child who does not want any contact with one parent, only expresses negative feelings for them and only shows positive feelings for the other parent

We will call the parent who creates this singular relationship between the child and himself the "alienating" parent.3The parent excluded from the singular relationship is the "target parent." We note that alienation can happen either way if either parent tries to cherish the child from the other

2 harm to the child

The persistent nature of the conflict seriously endangers the mental health of the parents and the psychological development of the children. Parents can use the pretext of fighting for their children to cause severe emotional harm to the very person whose protection and welfare are allegedly being fought for4

“Contact arrangements must ensure that the child's emotional ties with both parents are protected. There is good research to indicate that children need contact with adults of both sexes for balanced development5 «

With the exception of abuse, there is no good reason a child should not spend time with both parents, and even with abuse, most children want to maintain some sort of relationship with the abusive parent. It is the responsibility of both parents and professionals and the courts to ensure that such contact is safe6

Alienating messages and behavior influence a child and have a negative effect on their development. The effect is to plunge the child into a severe loyalty knot, a position in which the child believes it has to decide which parent it "loves" more. If the result is the exclusion of one parent from the child's life, then the damage is irreparable

3 The family systemic approach

All families are made up of individuals who live together in stable, intimate groups with the purported purpose of caring for and supporting one another. Family members develop their own rules, whether spoken or not, about how they relate to one another. The rules of conduct for every family change over time. Most changes in the family system are gradual, but some events cause catastrophic upheaval. Separation or divorce is usually such an event.

If the separating family cannot change their own rules of conduct without outside intervention, the separation or divorce process itself will reach a dead end, a description that is used when the actual process » stuck «and the family system is unable to restructure itself appropriately. When there is a deadlock, every action by anyone, family member, lawyer, spouse, is answered with a counter-action, with the result that nothing moves anymore.

The dead center creates its own system, with its own membership, rules and behavioral boundaries. Although hardly noticed by professionals, membership in the divorce dead center system includes all family members living together and all professionals who are involved in "helping" the family, that is, the lawyers, mediators, therapists and even the judge. A divorce dead center can arise three levels occur:

• an internal level (within an individual)
• an interaction level (between two individuals),
• and / or an external level (within a larger social or family system)7

A standstill at any of these levels will affect the whole system, and the response of each individual member will affect all members, especially the child.

The children themselves are members of both the changing family system and the evolving larger divorce dead center system. As a member of the family system, the child is legally, emotionally, and psychologically bound to its parents. As a member of the divorce dead center system, the child is often asked to show solidarity with one or the other parent, a demand that understandably brings the child into a loyalty conflict. All members of the divorce dead center system, including the experts, are impaired in their behavior anyway by the fights for loyalty and can all too easily be turned against one another

4. Motivation for alienation

An alienating parent likely has strong underlying feelings and emotions, stemming from previous unfinished business, that have been revived and complicated by the pain of divorce. The individual, in an effort to ward off these strong and intensely uncomfortable feelings, develops behavioral strategies into which the children are drawn. A redressing solution to the pain and anger is to seek custody of the child and make an effort to punish the other parent by excluding them.

If the motivating factors are unconscious, the alienating parent may not feel it at all and / or may not be aware of the feelings and emotions described above. Parents who are not aware of this can convincingly deny the alienating behavior, but still be fully involved in it.

Parents may also be aware of their angry or hopeless feelings, but want to protect the child. They report this to their lawyers and make appropriate statements in court, but can still unintentionally and unknowingly adopt alienating behavior that is driven by their less conscious needs.

Often times, this occurs as a milder, less prominent way of alienating the child from the target parent. Nevertheless, it is important to recognize the specific signs in order to counteract its development in good time.

The courts should not condone alienating behavior simply because the intention to alienate is disputed. Nor should you give custody to the parent on the assumption that the behavior you witnessed and cited in court is simply the result of the bitterness caused by the argument. Parents involved in a highly contentious divorce can display their worst behavior to everyone, but it is impossible to predict whether that behavior will normalize after the dispute is finally settled.

5. Recognize alienating behavior

5.1 The continuum: distinction between "typical" divorce and alienation.

In a "cooperative" divorce, both parents work together to restructure their own relationship and allow their children to have as normal a relationship with both of them as possible. This means cooperation in terms of finances, logistics and schedules, as well as actively supporting the children's emotional relationships with the other parent and extended families.

All parties in a divorce experience a wide range of intense emotions, including anger, disappointment, hurt, and fear. In "cooperative" divorces, the parties consciously try to avoid behavior that is clear to them that provokes the other side.

A bitter divorce is not necessarily an alienating one. Alienation occurs when the parents in a divorce or custody dispute use their children to satisfy their own emotional needs, to express or transmit their intense emotions, or to use them as manipulable chess pieces to retaliate against the other side . The assessment of whether or not there is alienation in a bitter divorce cannot be measured by the degree of anger or loss expressed, but by the intent, recognizable in the behavioral pattern, to involve the children in the argument.

Parental alienation occurs on a broad continuum, depending on the level of internal despair of the alienating parent, the vulnerability of the child, and the reaction of the target parent, as well as the reaction of the external system (family, lawyers, psychotherapists, judiciary). The range extends from children who experience considerable discomfort during transitional periods (mild) to children who, in contrast to the previous ones, feel compelled to adopt two separate worlds and identities when they are with one or the other parent (moderate), up to children who refuse to want to have anything to do with the target parent, whereby they are filled with hatred (difficult).

There are alienating parents who are unconscious (unconscious) of their emotional state, their motive for alienation, or the effects of their behavior, while at the other end of the continuum there are parents who have the absolute intention of having the child exclusively to themselves bind and who express this clearly in words and behavior (obviously).

5.2 Mild

Recognizing the mild form of alienating behavior is a tricky task. The behavior is subtle, and the alienating parent tends to deny the motivations and actions, trying to insure the exact opposite of what they are really thinking and doing.

In this milder form, there are fewer contradictions in the divorce dead center system (lawyers, courts). For this, the key to discovering the alienating behavior is the respect shown by the child to the other parent.

Examples of the mild form of alienating behavior are:

1. Little respect for the importance of dealing / contact with the other parentl:

- “You can visit the mother; you can decide; I won't force you. "

- No encouragement to visit;

- no concern about missed visits;

- no interest in the child's activities or experiences during the visit (in a positive way).

2. No appreciation for communication between visits:

- no encouragement of communication between visits;

- Little awareness of the distress the child may feel about missed visits or phone calls.

- Inability to tolerate the presence of the other parent, even during events that are important to the child:

- "I won't go to a football game when your mother is there."

4. Disregard of the importance of the relationship for the child:

- Showing a willingness to seek and accept a new job away from the other parent, regardless of the child's relationship with that parent.

5.3 Moderate

The alienating parent has a certain awareness of the emotional motives (fear of loss, anger) and little appreciation for the goal core part. The statements and the behavior are subtle, but damaging for the child

1 Statements of refusal to visit

- "You can visit your papa but you know what I feel about it"

- "How can you visit your father when you know I was sick, Aunt B is here"

- "Visits to your father depend entirely on you"

2 refusal to hear anything about the other Ekernieil (especially if it's good)

- "That is between you and your father (regarding reports of visits),

- Plan for visits, "

- I don't want to hear about it (what you did to your father. Especially if it was fun),

3 pleasure of hearing negative news about the other parent

4 Refusal to talk to the other parent directly

- If the target parent calls, they give the child the phone, "It's him," with a disgusted intonation

- Simply hang up the phone as soon as the target parent answers

- Wordlessly hands the phone to the child when the target parent calls

5 Refusal to allow target parent to come close

- Target parent is not allowed to leave the car or even enter the property or the driveway when picking up and returning the child

6 Allegations and withdrawals of allegations, made negative comments about the other parent and then denied it

- "There are things I could tell you about your father, but I'm not that kind of person"

- "Your father is an alcoholic oh I shouldn't have said that"

7 subtle allegations

- "Your father was hardly here when you were little"

- "Your father left me"

8 Destruction of memories of life together with the target parent

In moderate forms of alienation, all three divorce dead center systems are involved.The alienating parent is in an inner dichotomy, his relationship with the other parent is conflicted, and external influences, such as those of therapists, lawyers, and the court, are to some extent polarized involved

5.4 Obvious

If the alienation becomes evident, the motivation to alienate (the intense hatred of the other) is glaring. The alienating core part is obsessed with it and sees the target partner as harmful to themselves or to the children, often even to the rest of the world. A story of marriage is told in which there is nothing but bad. The target parent was never worth anything as a spouse or parent, and neither is he today. Such a parent shows little reaction to logic and little relation to reality

Many alienating parents at this stage are clearly of the opinion that the target parent is a real danger to the children. They present this belief as concrete knowledge that in the time they spend with the target parent, children will be irreparably harmed in some way or brainwashed by the target parent not to appreciate or love the alienating parent

1 Claims about the other core part are based on deception or are false

- "Your mother pays no maintenance" if there is evidence of the payment

- "Your father does not love us" (or "you") when there are no signs at all

- "Your mother drinks too much," "uses drugs", "smokes" etc. when there is no evidence to support these claims

- "Your father hired the meanest lawyer in town,"

2 Depiction of children as victims of bad behavior by the target parent

- "Your mother has left us"

- "Your father no longer loves us (or you)"

3 Open criticism from the target parent

- "Your mother is a drug / alcohol addicted violent person"

- "What is wrong with your father, he never / always does that again"

- "Your mother is endangering your health,"

- "Your father doesn't care about you / doesn't understand you when you visit him"

4 The children are forced to keep secrets from the target parent

“Don't tell your mother where you've been / what you've seen / where you're going / etc. «

5 threat of deprivation of love

- "I won't love you if you (see your father etc)"

- "I'm the only one who really loves you"

6 Extreme lack of courtesy to the target parent

At this stage of alienation there is always a conscious motivation and the internal, the interaction and the external systems are fully involved in the alienation process

5.5 Difficult

In the difficult stage, the alienating core part no longer needs to be active.In the sense of a motivation, the alienating core part no longer has any respect for the other core part (either motivated by fears, emptiness or helplessness) and hatred and contempt are quite obvious

At this stage the child is so involved in the existence of the alienating Ekermeil that they fully consent, the target parent is a villain and the scum of the world. The child takes on the desires, emotions and hatred of the alienating Ekernieil and expresses them to everyone as his own feelings. The child also sees the past of the target parent and their family as completely negative and is unable to express or recall any positive memories or feelings for the target parent.

6. Intervention in the alienation system

6.1 Prevention

6.1.1 Advice

In the ideal cooperative divorce, there is little or no alienation. Each parent values ​​the role that the other parent can play in the children's lives and the various interests and talents that they have to offer the children. So there is no motive for alienation. However, this ideal rarely occurs in real life, as divorce involves an intense change in role, existence and lifestyle for almost everyone involved.

Some counties, court systems, and other government units8 Require that all parents with children involved in a divorce participate in a counseling program designed to understand the impact of the divorce process on themselves and their children and to appreciate the value of both parents' involvement. Parents receive advice on the various stages of divorce and child development and the impact their divorce may have on their children. The studies of the long-term effects of divorce and the common problems associated with it are discussed. The programs are designed to act as a preventive measure against problems that ordinarily arise, especially when parents do not understand the psychological and emotional consequences of their divorce on themselves and their children.

Other states require compulsory mediation in court as a way of avoiding a dispute. Proponents of mediation believe that it is more effective than the courts in avoiding future arguments9. The participants expressed great satisfaction with the programs and recommended that they be expanded10.

6.1.2 Lawyers.

It is the lawyer’s duty to stand up for his client. We believe, however, that zealous partisanship must take place in the context of the client's long-term interests as a future member of a restructuring family system. Whatever the outcome of the immediate dispute, the client will have to live with the statements made about himself and others as well as with the consequences.

It is the attorney's job to help the client get over the immediacy of the pain and anger and enable them to see the long-term view of the family relationships involved.

Lawyers also need to acutely recognize the divorce dead center system itself and the important role they play in it. Badging the other spouse, asking the client not to have any further contact with the spouse, can prevent a real solution to the conflict. Zealous partiality is a poor excuse for actually destroying the client's long-term family relationships.

Alienation cases represent the greatest difficulty for lawyers. In his partisan role, a lawyer is bound by the goals set by the client in order to defend them vigorously11. However, a lawyer is also obliged not to initiate or defend any frivolous actions12. We believe that actions that harm children fall under this ban13.

We further believe that under no circumstances should the attorney encourage a client to obtain information about the opposing party from the child, nor should an attorney question the child even if the child is not represented by him.

It is important to note that we are describing cases of alienation and not other forms of abuse, such as physical or sexual abuse. If abuse is genuinely suspected, the safety of the spouse and children becomes paramount and a thorough assessment by a competent professional is necessary.

6.1.3 Courts

Courts must recognize the initial traces of alienation and seek information about family structure in order to assess the level of risk to the family. Do adults use or manipulate children to meet their own emotional needs? Are the children vulnerable to alienation?

All children can be called to battle, but in general the children are the most vulnerable. You are then overly dependent, fearful, and passive. These children can express feelings of guilt about their parents' divorce, identify with or play the savior of the alienating parent, taking on the caring role of a parent and / or feeling more or less loved depending on the alienating parent's condition. In general, however, the children will have little insight into their situation.

The factors that mark families in which alienation is less likely are: abundant positive contact between both parents and children; Sibling groups that all have good relationships with both parents; good relationships between the children and their parents (their grandparents) and friends of both parents.

Many highly contentious families expect not only a regulation of custody and access from the court, but also an assessment of right and wrong behavior, good and bad parenting. The court is seen as the place where one person is judged suitable and the other as unsuitable. The court can correct this unfortunate scenario by highlighting the legal and pragmatic reasons for its decision Compassionate litigation, which does not add to anger, loss, shame and humiliation in front of this public forum, can be immensely beneficial to the inner state of those involved

6.2 Mild Alienation Cases

If a process of alienation is recognized, the court must intervene in the mild, beginning stage. At this stage there is at least the intellectual realization on the part of the alienating parent that alienation between the child and the target parent does not serve the best interests of the child

Often alienation at this stage is motivated by the fear that the impending divorce will cause the child to love the alienating parent less. The final resolution of the divorce itself, along with professional advice and the therapy described below, can improve this situation significantly

In the mild stage it is important that the family is involved in a "systemic family therapy", the aim of which is to change the behavior of parents towards their child. Traditional individual therapies are not helpful here because they tend to only target one Partially setting goals and thus reinforcing alienation.If individual therapy is necessary for the child or one parent, it must be carried out by a therapist who is familiar with the alienation process and who supports the value of a child's relationship with both parents. The aim of therapy here is to resolve the divorce arrest so that the process of restructuring the family can continue

Court-ordered dead center divorce therapy must include all adults involved in caring for the child. A court order may be required which requires all warring adults to meet in the same room. If such a meeting is not recommended, the adults should at least be involved with the same systemic therapist

The order of the court must be firm and unequivocal. The rights, responsibilities and duties of each parent must be clearly stated. All parties must understand that a legal order cannot be changed without the consent of the court

There must be a concept for enforcing the legal order. The court should appoint an attorney for the child who has the authority to order a full review of the family system regardless of further court orders if the above therapy is unsuccessful. The order at this stage should include a mode of payment for both the child's attorney and the judicial review.

We are hopeful that in most cases the court-ordered expensive review will be a sufficient sanction to motivate parents to sincerely participate in therapy. But parents need to feel the authority of the court behind the court order. Penalties for non-compliance must be explicitly listed. We urge the courts to outline the next stage of intervention (as described below) and to include a statement of any further sanctions if necessary

6.3 Moderate

Intervention in moderate alienation cannot consist solely of teaching and counseling as described above for mild alienation. Teaching cannot be successful because alienation is not a rational process at this stage and arguments of reason will not change any irrational behavior. At this stage the individual internal difficulties of the alienating parent have become so intense that insight and judgment of the target parent are impaired. Furthermore, the interactions with and via the target parent are not based on observations in the alienating parent, but on internal fears and serve to confirm the belief that the target parent is bad. In addition, external forces (individual therapists, lawyers, extended families) are mostly polarized on the part of one party and maintain the alienation)

We believe that the family system must be thoroughly assessed by a professional or team of professionals familiar with the "systemic family approach." This assessment must cover the whole system, including all adults who, as described above, are directly involved in the life of the Child are involved. The assessment must be carried out by a single person or a team. The purpose of the assessment is (1) to identify the specific motives and behaviors that cause the divorce dead center or subsequent alienation, (2) to evaluate whether or not individual therapy could be useful for one party in solving intrapsychic problems and (3) Develop a complete behavioral plan for intervening in the alienation process

The behavioral assessment must be very targeted at the motives for the standstill behavior that causes the alienation and justify the necessary measures to change the system

For the intervention, we propose to give the recommendations specifically and target-oriented, as the Individual Educational Plan (IEP) prescribes as a model14 and to aim for compliance in a similar way to compliance should be around 70% in the first two months, 80% in the third or fourth month; 90% in the fifth month and the following time. As an example:

1. The child will see the target parent x times per week without parental conflicts during the handover;

2. The child will phone the target parent x times a week and talk about positive things for a minute or two; (depending on the age of the child); (depending on whether or not phone calls to a hostile environment would be for the child's benefit);

3. During the visit, the alienating parent can only call x times (or not at all);

4. The child will send a picture or drawing to the target parent once a week with a positive note attached.

5. The child will bring projects carried out during visits or a message about what he enjoyed during the visit to the alienating parent.

6. The target parent will provide a picture of themselves to the child, and the alienating parent should encourage the child to display it.

Essentially, what the reviewers have to do is identify the impasse and address it directly and empathetically. Understandably, the plan will work best when the internal and interaction issues that cause the divorce impasse are addressed and addressed at the same time. The court must order the parents to show that they can follow a plan whose ultimate goal is mutual recognition of interests, even if it does not occur to them on their own.

Finally, the plan must cover a long, standstill period during which the behavioral requirements of the parents and the child are explicitly stated. This will give parents enough clues towards the future to calm the system down and make it apparent for everyone to get used to the idea that the various relationships between members will be established in a predictable manner. We propose that the plan be about six months, with a court hearing pre-arranged for the time thereafter.

When the review begins, the child's attorney should also request a judicial hearing, which will take place once the review is complete. At this hearing, all parties could present beneficial measures. The child's lawyer would share the results of the reviewer and give recommendations for any individual therapy that is likely to be required for the impasse, including behavioral management similar to IEP. The court should then issue a detailed, quantifiable, specific order with listed sanctions regarding the behavioral changes necessary to avoid alienation and order therapy of the parties, if recommended by an expert.

Creative sanctions must be behind the court order because compliance at this stage is only motivated by fear. The ultimate sanction is change of custody, but there are many others that we suggest.The legal system has traditionally used fines and loss of liberty as penalties for failure to comply with court orders. But these could harm or confuse the children just as much as the disobedient. Obviously, threatening legal fees or a weekend jail sentence can be useful sanctions. Threats of imposing fees on the child's attorney, the cost of the assessment, the cost of the child's therapy, or even the therapy of the other parent can all be used to alleviate the Maintaining willingness to comply at this stage of the intervention, but always in line with the interests and needs of the child.

We also propose (as a second stage) that the court should determine both the time (extension of visits or granting of cherished holidays and birthdays to the observing parent) and function (allocation of traditionally common parental authority such as medical care, Upbringing) moves in favor of the goal element, both as an appropriate sanction for alienation and as a possible preparation for the ultimate sanction, the change of custody (translator's note: as the fourth stage).

The careful monitoring of such a detailed court order is an essential part of this intervention, and we suggest that a monitoring team take over this task. The child's lawyer and a therapist, most likely the appraiser or the original post-divorce counselor, should work together.

6.4 Parents' assessment

If the above-described intervention fails and the child remains practically unrelated to the target parent, another stage of the intervention is justified. If the alienating behavior continues despite the educational activities, post-divorce counseling, dead center resolution therapy, and specific behavior management intervention, it can be seen as a proven fact that the alienating parent does not have the ability to relate to the other parent.

There is a considerable body of research that specifically examines the effects of a single parent household on children. A full review of this literature is beyond the scope of this work. In general, however, the evidence is overwhelming that in households without a father, boys have lower self-esteem, are more likely to be rejected by their age group, and exhibit deficiencies in cognitive development. Girls may be less affected in households without a father, but research shows negative effects on girls' social and cognitive development15.

There is additional research on children's response to high-controversy divorces. Children who are drawn into the conflicts between parents during divorce show more emotional difficulties than those whose parents are better able to resolve their difficulties. Children whose parents are in conflict “are more likely to feel trapped, and children who are trapped are more likely to experience depression, anxiety disorders, and, to a lesser extent, develop deviant behavior16.

“It is important to recognize that a parent who instills parental alienation in the child is in fact committing psychological abuse by producing not only lifelong alienation from the beloved parent, but also lifelong psychiatric disorders in the child can. ”A change of custody must then be considered17

The court has to decide which place of care is least harmful to the child. A comparative determination of the educational abilities of each parent has to be carried out

Knowing that the alienating parent does not have the ability to foster a relationship between the child and the target parent, the question of whether the target parent has sufficient parental skills will need to be discussed in court18

If the target parent has sufficient parental skills, as defined in the research, to meet the child's needs, and there is a reasonable likelihood that the target parent will claim the child's relationship with the alienating parent, then the court should earnestly Consider changing custody rules, unless the child is so entangled with the alienating parent that changing custody would cause permanent harm to the child. If the target parent is unsuitable, it is up to the court to check whether other farm members or foster care are available to take in the child, someone who can help the child establish a relationship with both parents to manufacture and maintain

6.5 Difficult The completely entangled child19

If the alienation is allowed to progress and the child has few resources to withstand the influence of the alienating parent, it can become completely "entangled" with the alienating parent. It is estimated (in America) that very few children are affected ( between 1% and 5% of alienation cases)20 Entangled children have so absorbed the hatred, emotions, and desires of the alienating parent about the goal core that it is often difficult to distinguish who is speaking, themselves or the alienating parent

In some of these cases the entanglement is so complete that the child would suffer an emotional breakdown of devastating proportions if custody were given to the hated target parent. In these cases the child's self-esteem is totally dependent on the relationship with the alienating parent, and one Loss of this relationship would mean the destruction of his self-confidence _ Running away, allegations of the child about physical / sexual abuse by the hated parent, drug abuse, suicide attempts, refusal to work in school etc. would then be expected

In these rare cases, the child must stay with the alienating parent as it is not acceptable to use the child to punish a parent for wrongdoing21

If a relationship between the target parent and the entangled child is not permitted or defensible, some courts have suspended the child's maintenance by the target parent or allowed the target parent to deposit the child support so that the target parent does not co-finance the household that made it so thorough hates, however, even this sanction must be used with deliberation as it may put the child's care at a disadvantage without actually affecting the alienating parent

(Translator's Additional Note The View of American Authors,
that in extreme cases the child should stay with the alienating parent does not only mean a contradiction to the child's right to both parents secured by the reform of the child law, but also consolidates a break in the relationship between the child and the target parent, which may later have fatal consequences. R A Gardners Latest proposal for temporary placement of the child with third parties22 with extensive contacts with the target parent that the child can make his own experiences with him, with a view to the future perspectives veiled by various uncertainties is the more child-welfare-oriented slogan)

7 weapons

"Guns" are false accusations made by the alienating parent that the target parent is behaving in a way that is detrimental to the child. The most common weapons used are false allegations

- Being threatened or actual domestic violence

- Abuse up to and including sexual abuse of the child

- Insanity, alcoholism / drug abuse / homosexuality

- on the part of the target parent, or threats from

- Moving to another location or flight of the alienating parent

Even if such an allegation is made in connection with a highly contentious legal process, it must be investigated for veracity. Due to their special nature, the allegations shift the weight of the investigation to the suspect, the target parent. Some of these allegations concern very private, home-only behavior. Such allegations are difficult to prove and / or disprove. Most domestic violence remains invisible, despite increased awareness of the problem. Under the New Hampshire Rules of Procedure described in NH RSA 173 B, a domestic violence complaint in court, along with a sole custody request, can give the complainant a significant advantage in legal proceedings.

The right of custody can be obtained in an ex parte (note without hearing the other side) procedure. All that is required is an affidavit of violence or threats of violence. Proof of danger or injury is seldom required, and judges rarely inquire about pre-existing care arrangements.

Lawyers are bound by their code of ethics not to deliberately deceive the court23. It is therefore a very questionable practice to refer clients who have not experienced domestic violence or who have not been threatened with violence to court with such allegedly experienced violence. This can violate the lawyer's code of professional conduct, even if he or she does not bring the case to court himself.

Allegations of abuse of a child (physical and / or sexual) can be fabricated, but can also be absolutely true. In any case, and especially in connection with a custody dispute, such allegations must be investigated immediately by a competent professional who is well versed in:

(1) sexual and / or physical abuse of children;

(2) family systems;

(3) Divorce and custody disputes, including the influence of lawyers and the legal system.

Sexuality triggers intense emotions in all listeners, and fear and panic can sometimes cloud one's sanity. Some of the litigating parties have learned to take advantage of the irrationality that usually accompanies sexual abuse allegations. We warn all concerned: seek immediate professional help through a coordinated systemic review of both the sexual abuse allegation and the family system that made the allegation.

If it is unclear whether there is indeed abuse (sexual or physical), then the accusation may have arisen from intense feelings about the divorce, fear of abuse, and misinterpretation of a given situation. However, an unrefuted allegation works to the advantage of the alienating parent, as such questionable allegations cast a shadow of supposed harm on the child that no person, agency, or agency will have the courage to ignore.

Because of the emotionally charged atmosphere generated by allegations of sexual and physical abuse, we suggest that advisory committees be set up to assist the judge in his or her findings regarding the abuse. Where this is not done and no reliable facts have been produced, the accused will always be treated as guilty, as long as their innocence in relation to the relationship with children is not proven.

Alcoholism, insanity, or homosexuality allegations also place the burden on the target parent to prove appropriate handling of the child, but these factors are less effective in most custody disputes today than they were before.

Another weapon is the threat to move or the actual flight of the alienating parent. The court must immediately seek to determine the motive for the move, whether spoken or not. If the motivation is to keep the target parent away, then the alienating parent is giving warning signs not to stop at anything just to achieve an exclusive relationship with the child.

Regardless of when a "weapon" appears in the course of the legal dispute, the fact of the accusation must immediately lead to a full assessment of the system by a qualified, competent specialist. It serves as an indication that the alienating parent knows no boundaries and that education, information, and behavior management will be insufficient interventions. An expert must look at the entire system, assess the truth and relevance of the allegations, assess the motivation for the allegations, assess the child's safety and well-being, and make recommendations on the best classification and treatment arrangements for the child.

///. Conclusion

Cooperation between judges, lawyers and therapists is crucial in solving highly controversial alienation cases. The judge has the power to order changes, but is not easily available. Lawyers are more accessible but do not readily have the necessary understanding. As advocates committed to partiality, they can easily become part of the divorce dead center system and worsen an already inflamed situation. The therapists required here must have a systemic understanding of their work and are usually available. But they have neither the power of the court nor the legal understanding of the lawyers. Teamwork based on partnership is therefore essential.

Lawyers must primarily help their clients to recognize the long-term interests and life prospects of their children, as well as the risks to be borne by the child in a struggle for custody (injury, revenge, fears) including the subsequent alienation. Lawyers must refer those in need of someone who works in the best interests of the whole family to therapists trained in family systems. If lawyers realize that they are being drawn into the polarization-alienation conflict as active partisans, they must seek expert advice so that the process does not escalate further.

Courts must act decisively and explicitly in cases of highly contentious divorce and alienation. Arrangements must be pragmatic and the reasons for the decisions must be explained in such a way that it becomes less likely that one party can claim moral victory while the other suffers from the shame of defeat. Courts must use their knowledge and authority to understand the inner workings of the individual family system, to recognize the highly controversial cases of alienation, and to issue appropriate, timely and specific instructions and recommendations. It is only through recognizing the alienation in its early phases that it is possible to prevent future harm to the child and the family. Intervention at any stage in the continuum of harmful alienation is always a decisive contribution to avoiding further emotional damage for both parents and children.