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Many clients that come to my office have issues with a spouse with traits of a personality disorder. These traits create many challenges for the relationship, and the family, and in the context of divorce, the case can end up being what is called a “high conflict case.” For many years, I have focused my practice, in part, on these cases involving psychological issues as well as high conflict cases.  Rarely do I find a good, understandable explanation in the public domain of what a narcissistic personality is, how they present, and the impacts that these traits and disorders have…
” Today Parental Alienation Europe co-founder Brian O’Sullivan was interviewed on The Elaine Show, Virgin Media, where he discussed Parental Alienation and its devastating effects. Brian dispelled some myths about Parental Alienation being a new phenomenon and shows that this problem has been around for a very long time. PARENTAL ALIENATION UNITED AS ONE CONFERENCES 2020 ANNOUNCEMENT [embedded content] Brian also made the official announcement of our Parental Alienation United As One Conferences 2020 that we are running in association with The La Dolce Vita Project, a domestic violence charity in Northern Ireland in April 2020. The conferences will take…
With my work as a lawyer on complex child custody cases, I have seen in many of these cases the phenomenon of “projection.” My work as a member of APA and a frequent researcher and contributor on issues concerning personality disorders in child custody and with Parental Alienation cases, brings my clients often into situations where they are being accused of behaviors that are actually resident in the disordered parent. Psychological projection is a defense mechanism in which the human psychology defends itself against unconscious impulses or qualities by denying their existence in themselves while attributing them to others. These…
Working with high conflict personalities, I have always been open to approaches that can manage difficult issues with HCPs (High Conflict Personalities), without necessarily involving the courts every time there is a dispute, or transgression by a HCP.  One way of dealing with difficult personalities in divorce is to have a Parenting Coordinator involved in the case. What is a Parenting Coordinator (PC) ? Essentially, a PC acts as a middleman, referee, and dispute resolver.  The PC can make recommendations to a solution for a disputed issue.  In other words, the PC can act almost as a magistrate for the…
Reading up today on divorce planning, the reminder was made that the summer is often the time that many people postpone thoughts of divorce. The reasons for this are many. Business during the summer with activities takes the attention away from difficult subjects like divorce. For many parents, it’s just enough making sure that the kids are having a good summer, and that summer trips or vacations are being taken before the kids go back to school. Even if you are already decided that you wish to file for divorce, there are a number of things that you can do…
One of the hallmarks of my practice is the ability over the years to manage, and aggressively attack, Parental Alienation cases.  In order for an attorneys to effectively manage a case involving HCPs (High Conflict Personalities), personality disorders, and PA ( Parental Alienation), the attorney should have years of experience dealing with these cases, along with years of experience interfacing with clinicians that not only understand PA, but that are also willing to bring that expertise to the case and create, along with my work, and effective strategy to deal with the alienated children (through both legal and clinical channels),…
An interesting article from Florida’s Dr. Michael Bone: ______________________________________ It is important to understand and recall that Parental Alienation is a form of child abuse.  Since it is the parent child- relationship that orients a child’s understanding of their own sense of self and their lovability, teaching a child that one of their parents does not love them, also teaches them that they are in some basic way, unlovable, or not worthy of love. While alienated children typically describe hatred or fear of the alienated parent, gently probing into the nuances of these negative feelings, virtually always reveals that these children…
My divorce and post decree clients that have people with traits of toxic narcissism often struggle with trying to explain or discuss what it can be like living with someone with such toxic traits, especially when the person is able to maintain a facade of normalcy on their work or neighborhood relationships.  Sometimes, I have to coach clients to understand that it can be difficult persuading others as to how emotionally damaging these relationships are, especially when the narcissist is “high functioning,” or otherwise able to disguise their abusive behaviors from the rest of the world.  Living with someone with…
This is a particularly good article that was sent by a past client of our Firm. I am fortunate that many of my current and past clients stay engaged with the literature and groups that deal with Parental Alienation, to the point that they wish to share the benefits and knowledge of what they may have acquired as we worked on their case, and the client witnessed for themselves the identification of these alienation scenarios and the strategies that I have developed (with the benefit of the insights of many great clinicians, authors and PA experts through the years). This…
Questions come up from time to time about how parents are treated in Parentage cases ( where the parents are unmarried) vs. in a divorce case. Should fathers for example, be treated differently in a child custody case if they are not married to the mother of the child or children?  The answer in Illinois, fortunately, is no.  The Illinois Parentage Act borrows and connects with the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act (IMDMA) and utilizes in Parentage cases the same child custody statutes that are used in divorce cases.  These days, parents are no longer awarded “custody,” but are…
Dr. Michael Bone has a series of articles on Parental Alienation that are thoughtful and effective. One of the issues that he raised recently was the need for lawyers that represent targeted parents to “step up” and actually give voice (as I like to call it) to the reality that the other party is committing acts of PA, and making false allegations. In other words, it is not enough for a lawyer to simply defend a PA case.  In my view, the act of PA is child abuse, and if we look at PA from that angle, any parent that…
Hey, I made #39! I received an email today from Anuj at Feedspot that Illinois Divorce Lawyer Blog made the “Top 75 Illinois Blogs, News Websites & Newsletters To Follow in 2018” About Blog: ” Divorce blogger and attorney Michael Roe is experienced in dealing with high-conflict divorce and child custody cases involving psychological disorders. With his divorce blog, He wants to simplify divorce processes and make life better for parties going through a divorce “…
Many years ago, I helped a bit with Bill Eddy’s first book, a landmark publication called Splitting that discussed and defined for the first time what it can be like to go through a divorce with a High Conflict Personality, such as a person with BPD or NPD traits.  Here is a video from one of Bill’s series, discussing the analogy between splitting in politics, and the splitting that can occur in divorce. Splittign behaviors can lead to conflict distortions, false allegations, and parental alienation, in a divorce and child custody case. It is always good to understand these phenomena,…
© 2017 Bill Eddy, LCSW, Esq. I do a lot of consulting to family lawyers and their clients (often on the phone together), as well as many self-representing people in family court cases. These often involve high-conflict custody and access issues, although finances can also be involved. One of the biggest problems I keep seeing is that many family law professionals (lawyers, judges, mediators, evaluators, counselors, etc.) have a presumption in high-conflict cases. Here are the three most common presumptions: When Person B says Person A is acting badly 1.            Equal parent conflict It’s both! These professionals say. “Both Person…