Toxic parenting, which can refer to several different types of emotional abuse inflicted on kids by their parents, also includes the much-misunderstood “parental alienation”. Shaming your kids, blaming them for everything (including things they didn’t do or couldn’t control), and being extremely controlling and critical are all hallmarks of toxic parenting. But the particular poison that we here at The Kronzek Firm seem to see the most of is parental alienation.
Is you ex trying to poison your child against you?
Lansing is home to over one hundred and eighteen thousand people, but amazingly we come in at number 75 on the list of Michigan cities with the highest divorce rates. However, despite the fact that Lansing is soundly beaten in the divorce department by other places like Charlotte, Alma, Flint and Grand Ledge, we still have a significant number of parental alienation cases that wind up in our mid-Michigan family courts.
And each and every one is tragic. Especially when you consider the impact on the children. Fortunately, our judges in Ingham County, Eaton County, Clinton County, Jackson County, and Livingston County have much experience dealing with alienating parents (including many that are also narcissists,) who try to poison their children against their other parent.
Parental alienation is a tragic form of child abuse.
Parental alienation, which is also sometimes called ‘hostile aggressive parenting’ is a form of child abuse. But what is it exactly? Well, it’s precisely what it sounds like – the alienation of a parent by a child. And while the parent being alienated has sometimes done something to deserve that treatment (usually some kind of child abuse or domestic asault), more often than not it’s the result of one parent poisoninig a child against their other parent. And it’s much more common in the wake of a divorce.Just ask the people at the Friend of the Court office. They see it all the time.
If you’re divorced and your ex is working to turn your child against you, you have a long, serious battle on your hands. But what if you’re not sure. Is your ex working to alienate you from your child, or is your child simply going through a phase? Are they legitimately angry at you, or is their other parent actively trying to mess up your custody agreement? It can sometimes be hard to tell. But here are a few clues to watch out for in your ex’s behavior:
- They blame you for everything when talking to your child
- They question your child about the details of your personal life
- They intentionally schedule activities to conflict with your visitation
- They refuse you access to your child’s medical/school records
- They act hurt or sad if your child expresses a desire to see you
- They create temptations in order to encourage your child to avoid visiting with you
What options does a parent have when they’re being alienated from their child?
Thankfully, the Ingham County Family Court and many other mid-Michigan courts are recognizing the dangers of parental alienation, and incorporating that awareness into custody litigation. Parents in Lansing, Holt, Dewitt and Okemos have all experienced this exact problem during their divorces, and thankfully our judges and courts are more on top of dealing with it than they’ve ever been in the past.
However, hoping the court is aware of what’s going on, or that the Judge believes you and not your ex, simply isn’t enough. You’re going to need an expert attorney with years of experience handling contentious divorces and custody battles on your side. So call The Kronzek Firm today at 517 866 1000. We can help you protect your relationship with your child. Because we’re not just lawyers, we’re parents too. We have handled hundreds of divorce and custody cases in mid-Michigan over the decades including those involving narcissists, those who poison kids against their other parents, and parental alienators.