Unfortunately, not all Michigan couples who have children together wind up staying with one another for the long haul, and while many couples split up and co-parent relatively well, others struggle to do the same. At WN Law, we recognize, that, in some cases, parents who are no longer involved romantically with their child’s other parent may encourage their child to reject that parent in a process known as parental alienation, and we have helped many people experiencing the damaging effects of this behavior pursue recourse.

According to Psychology Today, parental alienation syndrome can prove harmful for parent-child relationships, but it can also prove immensely damaging to the child at the center of it. Essentially, parental alienation syndrome can result from any type of repeated attempts by one parent to influence a child’s feelings about the other. This might include limiting communications between parent and child, badmouthing the other parent in front of a shared child or even outright lying about a parent with the intent of influencing a child’s feelings about him or her.

A study involving adult children of divorce who experienced parental alienation syndrome during their younger years revealed that the effects of the behavior are long-lasting and far-reaching. Children who fell victim to parental alienation tactics often grew up to experience feelings of depression and self-hatred, and there is also a link between experiencing parental alienation as a child and having low self-esteem as an adult.

Kids who had one parent attempting to turn them against the other parent during childhood were also more likely to develop alcohol or drug issues as adults than their peers. They were also more likely to have trouble expressing or accepting love and affection later in life. You can find more about child custody and similar issues on our webpage.