As a Florida couple that recently divorced, navigating the aftermath is a harrowing experience. Your fraught relationship can create negative emotions, misunderstandings and worse.
Parental alienation often arises as a response to divorce. Unfortunately, it can have negative consequences and a lasting impact on your child.
Immediate impact of PAS
The Psychiatric Times examine the damage parental alienation can do to a child. First, courts across the country define parental alienation as a form of child psychological abuse. Needless to say, abuse of any sort will leave a mark.
If your child is a victim of these abusive tactics, you will likely see a change in their personality. Many victims often feel guilt and confusion. They do not understand why one parent is talking badly about the other, especially if they are young. This goes against their established views, in which both parents are trustworthy and loving.
Behavioral differences in victims
To counteract this challenge to their beliefs, many victims will turn their guilt inward and begin to self-blame. Children may become dour and depressed. They may even develop self-harming behaviors like skin pinching, pulling out hair and more. Nervous tics are also common.
Even at a young age, children begin to display signs of depression or anxiety. They may become avoidant toward social situations or not find joy in things they previously loved. They may seem listless or tired. They may seem constantly cranky, grumpy or negative.
If you notice these signs coupled with other signs of parental alienation, you may want to act. The earlier you act, the easier it is to counteract the effects.