Archive for August 10th, 2012

Parental Alienation Awareness Organization Brochure

Posted on August 10, 2012. Filed under: Link | Tags: , |

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If Your Kids Could Make the RULES OF DIVORCE

Posted on August 10, 2012. Filed under: story | Tags: |

A book of divorce rules featuring child-produced art elements that both empowers kids and enlightens parents.

(Please note that these are only pre-illustrator page drafts)

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Brian Ludmer on Family Matters Blog Talk Radio (II)

Posted on August 10, 2012. Filed under: Family Matters Blog Talk Radio | Tags: , , , , |

Brian Ludmer’s visit 2 weeks ago did not provide enough time to enjoy his wealth of experience and information. Brian will be writing about tips in various areas including: Managing your legal case; dealing with mental health professionals; and helping alienated parents. He is authoring a chapter in the forthcoming 2nd Edition of TheInternational Handbook of Parental Alienation Syndrome. Brian brings a unique perspective to parental alienation cases, having successfully solved his own family dynamic when faced with attempts to estrange him from his own children. Unlike many other professionals ––back-by-popular-demand-1242012

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Dr. Kathleen Reay on Family Matters Blog Talk Radio

Posted on August 10, 2012. Filed under: Family Matters Blog Talk Radio | Tags: , , , , |

Every one of us gets thrown curveballs throughout life. Sometimes those curveballs can be confusing and overwhelming. Sometimes they seem like nothing at all. But, did you know that small, medium, big, or gigantic-sized curveballs are actually a form of trauma? Single or multiple traumas can actually create imbalances in our brain and nervous system that can negatively impact how we think, feel and act in life. This is a scientific fact. If we don’t effectively release the energy of trauma, it becomes frozen in our brain and nervous system and can cause a variety of problems including depression, anxiety attacks, phobias, numbness, stress, forgetfulness, addictions, sleeplessness, loneliness, chronic pain, headaches, and many other complaints. When any of these complaints occur, then it can be difficult to function at work, at school, or in relationships.

Dr. Kathleen M. Reay, Inc. & Associates,
Suite 204 – 74 Wade Avenue East,
Penticton, British Columbia, Canada, V2A 8M4

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Joint Custody Challenge

Posted on August 10, 2012. Filed under: video | Tags: , , , |

Japan has a sole custody system. After divorce one parent is given custody and the other parent often disappears. The parents in this video are participating in a demonstration and they want Japan to change to a joint custody system. Japan needs to align itself with the international standards.

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Katie Holmes First Mistake: She Wants Sole Custody

Posted on August 10, 2012. Filed under: story | Tags: , , |

Lawdiva blog by Georgialee Lang.

One of my pet peeves is lawyers who allow their clients to file divorce proceedings where they ask for sole custody. That’s what Katie Holmes has done in her divorce filing against Tom Cruise.

It’s an utter waste of time and a surefire way to escalate the conflict in a divorce case. Why do I say this?

Mainly because the days of “ownership” of children are thankfully, long gone. In asking for sole custody a parent is suggesting their partner is not fit to participate in decision-making when it comes to their children and often the notion of sole custody implies drastically limited access time for the non-custodial parent.

As well, parents who accede to their lawyer’s admonition to claim sole custody do not have the best interests of their children in mind and…let me go further…in doing so they display a significant character flaw.

Now before I go too far, I should say that where a parent is a child abuser, an out-of-control drug addict or alcoholic, or has a debilitating psychiatric disorder with little hope of redemption, sole custody may be appropriate. But most custody cases involve two adequate parents who can work together for the good of their child and put aside their anger, disappointment, resentment, and distress over the marriage breakdown.

For the last decade or so, joint custody is the parenting norm. However, many people don’t understand what that entails. Joint custody does not mean equal parenting time, although that may be one aspect of it. Joint custody means shared decision-making with respect to the important decisions required to raise a child: medical, educational, and religious upbringing.

Oh, you say, no wonder Ms. Holmes sought sole custody. She obviously wants to prevent her 6-year-old daughter Suri from being raised in the Church of Scientology. That may be her motive, but I suggest it’s too late for that now.

As I understand it, Katie embraced the doctrine of Scientology, hook, line, and sinker. To persuade a judge that Scientology is now the root of all evil will be an uphill argument. But she is still one step ahead of Mr. Cruise, having moved to New York City with Suri and establishing a new residence. A good strategy for a parent who is wants to exclude the other.

There’s no doubt that the Cruise/Holmes’ family could wage war over their daughter and make several lawyers very rich. I sincerely hope they are smart enough to do the right thing: settle a parenting plan discretely and privately.

Lawdiva aka Georgialee Lang

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Every Child has Certain Inalienable Rights

Posted on August 10, 2012. Filed under: video | Tags: , , |

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Friend of the Court

Posted on August 10, 2012. Filed under: story | Tags: , , , , |

Recent California Amicus Brief Involves Tired Old Myths About PAS
Published on June 20, 2012 by Amy J.L. Baker, Ph.D. in Caught Between Parents

A recent Amicus brief written by DV Report, The Leadership Council, Justice for Children, , The California Partnership to End Domestic Violence, California Protective Parents Association, and Sheila James Kuehl dated November 22, 2011was filed in order to prevent the judge from transferring custody of 4 children to their father from whom they were alienated. According to the brief, “PAS posits that when children reject their father and they or their mother make abuse allegations, that behavior is most likely the product of a mother’s alienating tactics rather than actual experience of abuse” (page 14). The case was McRoberts (mother) v. The Superior Court of Los Angeles County and Steven Lesserson (father).

Statements like this infuriate me because they pack so many untruths. First, there is the presumption that all PAS cases are ones in which the mother is the favored parent and the father is the rejected parent. This is not what Dr. Gardner wrote about and it is not consistent with research on the topic, which clearly shoes that mothers can become innocent victims of their former spouses malicious manipulation of the children. To propagate misunderstandings/untruths such as this does a lot of damage to mothers everywhere who are seeking validation and support in their efforts to deal with the alienation of their children.

Second, PAS theory does NOT posit that when a child rejects a father it MUST be because of alienation rather than actual abuse. In fact, Gardner and those who follow in his footsteps emphasize that bona fide abuse and neglect must be ruled out prior to a decision about PAS being made.

Third, PAS theory does not state that simply because one parent makes an allegation against the other that it is ipso facto alienation. As noted above, abuse allegations must be investigated prior to alienation being determined.

I have tried to have a discussion with the folks at California Protective Parents Association but they did not want to have a discussion with me, although the woman I was communicating with offered to pray for me. I cannot help but conclude that they are willfully choosing to be ignorant about what PAS theory really is so that they can continue to hate us. In order to acknowledge that we who endorse the concept are not evil or crazy, they would have to give up their bogey man. In that way they are committed to their delusion every bit as much as alienated children are committed to theirs. I typically encourage alienated parents to never give up on their alienated children and I will follow my own advice and continue to reach out to these groups in order to one day achieve a mutualunderstanding.

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Parents can inflict emotional harm, not realize it

Posted on August 10, 2012. Filed under: story | Tags: , , |

By Kim Painter, Special for USA TODAY

Parents and other caregivers who demean, bully, humiliate or otherwise emotionally abuse children may not know the harm they can cause and often do not get the help that they and their children need, says a new report from the American Academy of Pediatrics

Emotional abuse may be the most common form of child maltreatment, according to a report from the American Academy of Pediatrics.

“Psychological maltreatment is just as harmful as other types of maltreatment,” says today’s report in Pediatrics. Yet it is not recognized, understood or studied as much as physical or sexual abuse, says a team of authors that includes members of the American Association of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

Even experts can “struggle to tease out” when words or actions cross the line from less-than-ideal parenting to emotional abuse, says co-author Roberta Hibbard, director of child protection programs at Indiana Universityand Riley Hospital for Children, Indianapolis.

It is abuse when “an interaction between a parent and child inflicts harm and causes difficulty with the child’s emotional well-being and development,” she says. Anything from repeated insults to threats to ignoring a child may qualify. “But you really can’t pinpoint and say that the one time that you called the child ‘stupid’ is the reason they are having these problems,” she says.

The report, which updates one issued by the academy in 2000, says emotional abuse:

•Is linked with mental illness, delinquency, aggression, school troubles and lifelong relationship problems among those who were abused.

•Can be especially harmful in the first three years of life.

•May be the most common form of child maltreatment, with severe psychological abuse recalled by 8% to 9% of women and 4% of men in studies in the USA and United Kingdom.

But there’s little research on preventing emotional abuse or helping mistreated children, the report says. Broad education programs that spread positive parenting techniques may help, as may more targeted programs for families at high risk. The report asks pediatricians to educate all parents and reach out to families in trouble.

In many cases, it’s a matter of “breaking a cycle of abuse,” says Alec Miller, chief of child and adolescent psychology at Montefiore Medical Center in New York. Miller, who did not contribute to the report, says: “I often ask parents if in their own childhoods, they experienced things like this. And a lot of them say, ‘Of course, and I just pulled myself up by my boot straps.’ ” One thing he tells these parents: What slides off one child may be devastating to another.

James Hmurovich, president of Prevent Child Abuse America, in Chicago, says “we need to make this a national issue” and a personal responsibility. Anyone who sees a child being berated should, at least, step in to “break the moment.”

When you see clear abuse, you should call a child-abuse hotline, Hibbard says.

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Parental Alienation Is Emotional Abuse of Children

Posted on August 10, 2012. Filed under: story | Tags: , , |

Published on June 28, 2011 by Amy J.L. Baker, Ph.D. in Caught Between Parents

Parental alienation is a set of strategies that parents use to undermine and interfere with a child’s relationship with his or her other parent. This often but not always happens when parents are engaged in a contested custody battle. There is no one definitive set of behaviors that constitute parental alienation but research with both parents and children has revealed a core set of alienation strategies, including bad-mouthing the other parent, limiting contact with that parent, erasing the other parent from the life and mind of the child (forbidding discussion and pictures of the other parent), forcing the child to reject the other parent, creating the impression that the other parent is dangerous, forcing the child to choose, and belittling and limiting contact with the extended family of the targeted parent.

Parents who try to alienate their child from his or her other parent convey a three-part message to the child: (1) I am the only parent who loves you and you need me to feel good about yourself, (2) the other parent is dangerous and unavailable, and (3) pursuing a relationship with that parent jeopardizes your relationship with me. In essence the child receives the message that s/he is worthless and unloved and only of value for meeting the needs of others. This is the core experience of psychological maltreatment (emotional abuse) as defined by the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC).

Research with “adult children” of parental alienation syndrome (that is, adults who believe that when they were children one parent turned them against the other parent) confirms that being exposed to parental alienation represents a form of emotional abuse. Furthermore, these adults reported that when they succumbed to the pressure and rejected one parent to please the other, the experience was associated with several negative long-term effects including depression, drug abuse,divorce, low self-esteem, problems with trusting, and alienation from their own children when they became parents themselves. In this way the cycle of parental alienation was carried forward through the generations. Thus, parental alienation is a form of emotional abuse that damages the child’s self esteem in the short run and is associated with life-long damage.

As is often true with other forms of abuse, the child victims of parental alienation are not aware that they are being mistreated and often cling vehemently to the favored parent, even when that parent’s behavior is harmful to them. This is why, mental health and legal professionals involved in cases of parental alienation need to look closely at the family dynamics and determine what the cause of the child’s preferences for one parent and rejection of the other parent are. If the favored parent is found to be instigating the alignment and the rejected parent is found to be a potential positive and non abusive influence, then the child’s preferences should not be strictly heeded. The truth is, despite strongly held positions of alignment, inside many alienated children want nothing more than to be given permission and freedom to love and be loved by both parents.

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