My ex-husband’s “Aunt N” works as an advocate for special needs children in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is the person who has given him legal advice, encouraged him to lie (see previous post, “Steps to Ponder“), falsified stories and documents while encouraging him to drop legal terms such as Parental Alienation Syndrome.
I don’t doubt for a moment that there are parents who fall into this category. When they first started dropping the term, I looked into the syndrome. I fit none of the criteria. I have never once bad-mouthed him to my children let alone tried to turn my children against him. It’s absurd. In fact, I deal with the exact opposite: him speaking poorly about me in front of the girls. It’s escalated to the point that my oldest daughter brings it up daily because it bothers her so much. She has expressed that she doesn’t want to go to his house because of these issues.
I want to repeat– I’m sure this syndrome exists. In my particular case, it does not.
Joan Meier, Executive Director of Domestic Violence Legal Empowerment and Appeals Project (DV LEAP), said, “PAS was invented to defeat child abuse claims – and it has been remarkably successful in misleading family courts into believing that women who are sincerely trying to protect their children and themselves from abuse, are just seeking to end the children’s relationship with their noncustodial father.”
Meier states that research has shown that children become “alienated” from a parent for a variety of valid reasons, most often resulting from the parent’s own negative behavior and relationship with that child.
“The proponents of ‘parental alienation syndrome’ are purveying invalid junk science that is not even legally admissible. PAS has been emphatically rejected by the Presidential Task Force of the American Psychological Association and by the National Council of Juvenile & Family Court Judges. Leading researchers in the field of custody have agreed that PAS has no scientific validity and the only courts to address the issue have found it inadmissible,” said Meier.
So, if Parental Alienation Syndrome exists in our case, it is not in the way he is claiming. He is personally starting on a path to alienate our daughters from ever having a healthy, loving father-daughter relationship with him.
He alone is creating this syndrome by his own actions.
- My daughters are learning that they can’t depend on him when he doesn’t show up for visitations.
- They are learning that he speaks poorly of their mother in their presence.
I want nothing more then for them to have a healthy, stable relationship with their father. I want him to be healthy for them. I want him to get help and be emotionally available. I don’t know if that is possible. It’s what I pray for.
One Mom’s Battle: Our mission at One Mom’s Battle is to increase awareness of Cluster B personality disorders (Narcissistic Personality Disorder, Antisocial Personality Disorder and Borderline Personality Disorder) and their impact upon shared parenting and the Family Court System which includes Judges, CPS workers, Guardian ad Litems (GAL), Parenting Coordinators (PC), Custody Evaluators, therapists and attorneys. Education on Cluster B disorders will allow these professionals to truly act in the best interest of the children.
History of One Mom’s Battle: In 2009, One Mom’s Battle began with one mother, (Tina Swithin), navigating the choppy waters of a high-conflict divorce in the Family Court System. Since then, it has turned into a grassroots movement reaching the far corners of the Earth. Tina’s battle spanned from 2009 – 2014 during which time she acted as her own attorney. Ultimately, Tina was successful in protecting her daughters and her family has enjoyed complete peace since October 2014 when a Family Court commissioner called her ex-husband a “sociopath” and revoked his parenting time in a final custody order.
Tina Swithin: Divorcing a narcissist? Tina Swithin’s books are available online at Amazon (print, Kindle or audio format). Each year, Tina offers life-changing weekends of camaraderie and healing at the Lemonade Power Retreat. Tina also offers one-on-one coaching services and a private, secure forum called, The Lemonade Club, for those enduring high-conflict custody battles.