IL family lawyerChildren should be able to enjoy a close relationship with each of their parents, as it is certainly in their best interests. In some cases, one parent will interfere with a child’s relationship with the other parent. When a parent engages in alienation, it has serious short and long-term effects on the children. A Naperville family law attorney can help you take action to hopefully put an end to this dangerous practice.

What Is Parental Alienation?

Parental alienation is one parent is relentlessly negative about the other to the children or in their presence. The parent’s intent is to make their children think less of the other parent. The parent wants the child to identify with them over the other parent. The children will pull away from the targeted parent to varying degrees. The children will begin to internalize the alienating parent’s negativity to the targeted parent. They may even refuse to speak with or see the targeted parent. There can be a permanent wedge between the child and the targeted parent, which may only be bridged after extensive therapy.

The Harmful Effects of Parental Alienation

Parental alienation hurts the child for the obvious reason that they lose a relationship with one of their parents. Being placed in the middle of a high-conflict divorce can harm the children emotionally. There is a reason why parental alienation is often described as a form of emotional child abuse.

Children can suffer from parental alienation in the following ways:

  • They have trouble in their personal relationships, and not just with the targeted parent.
  • They have difficulty learning in a school setting.
  • They will feel guilt and turmoil over their role in harming their relationship with the targeted parent.
  • They will struggle with impulse control, which can grow worse over time.

Parents must be vigilant to spot the signs of parental alienation. While alienation can only be punished through contempt if a parent has interfered with the other parent’s rights, a court may consider a change in the custody situation. Judges take parental alienation very seriously, given its effects on the children.

Contact a DuPage County Family Law Attorney

It is crucial to speak with a Naperville family law attorney to see what you can do to stop this dangerous practice. The attorneys at Calabrese Associates, P.C. can help you take legal action in court. Call us today at 630-393-3111 to discuss your case.



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