Parental alienation is real and more common that people realize. When child custody and parenting time conflict arises, one parent might manipulate their child to try to position themselves for the outcome they want. This, of course, is not only unfair, but also harmful to the child. In the worst case, this parental alienation can cause permanent damage to your relationship with your child. But what can you do to protect yourself, your child, and your relationship with them when alienation is occurring?
Ways to build your case for parental alienation
You don’t have to sit back and let parental alienation cause permanent damage to your child. Instead, you can take the following steps to build legal arguments demonstrating the existence of that alienation:
- Keep a written record: Parental alienation can manifest in several ways, but one of the most common is disparaging remarks made toward you by your child. Keep a record of when these statements are made, their context, and their content.
- Ask the other parent about problematic behavior: If your child says something inappropriate to you or displays concerning behavior that may be indicative of alienation, then ask the other parent about it to see if they can account for it.
- Scan social media: The social media profiles of your child’s other parent might paint you in a bad light. Keep in mind that your child might have access to these posts, which can taint their perception of you. Keep these posts to use as evidence later on.
- Get another set of eyes on the situation: You can request the appointment of a Guardian ad Litem or a custody evaluator in your case. These parties are supposed to be neutral and represent your child’s best interests. The hope, then, is that they’d be able to speak to any alienation that’s occurring.
- Conduct a deposition: Deposing the other parent might be a great way to lock them into their position. You can then work to destroy their credibility regarding the alienation, which could then give you an advantage when you seek to modify custody or visitation.
Don’t let parental alienation harm your child
Although parental alienation can be incredibly stressful, there are ways to bring it to a stop. You just have to know how to build an effective case and aggressively litigate it. By taking the steps mentioned above, you’ll be in a stronger position to find accountability and protect your child.