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Co-parents in Pennsylvania must work together for the good of the children. Even if you and the other parent do not get along, there are certain minimum basic expectations for the co-parenting relationship that cannot be violated. One of these is that you are free to have a relationship with your children without the specter of parental alienation.

The profile of an alienating parent

Parental alienation occurs when one parent feeds the children a steady diet of misinformation about the other parent in the hopes of destroying the children’s perception of that parent. It happens when a person is needy with a desire for vengeance against the other parent. They will typically be an angry person to start with and feel that they need to get back at the other parent for the breakup of the marriage. In turn, the children are dependent on the alienating parent, making it much more likely that they will be accepting of the falsehoods they are told.

The damage is difficult to undo

If your children are being subjected to this, it is something about which you should be worried. Your children may need psychotherapy to help undo the damage that the other parent has caused. It may take much time and effort for the effects of parental alienation to go away. The earlier you notice that this is occurring and the stronger you act to put a stop to it, the better the chances that you will be able to overcome the behavior.

If you suspect that parental alienation is occurring, you may want to take action to counter it as soon as possible. Your best course of action if the other parent will not stop the behavior could be to take the case to a judge. You may want to consult with a divorce attorney to learn more about how you can end parental alienation. Courts strongly disapprove of it and may be able to put an end to the behavior.