Janet L. Goehle, Attorney at Law
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Divorce and parental alienation

In Minnesota, it is not uncommon for an ex-spouse to try and influence their children’s actions during a divorce. According to Psych Central, this type of behavior is known as parental alienation and it involves a former partner manipulating their children’s feelings and behaviors toward the other parent.

Parents who suspect that their soon-to-be ex-spouse is using this type of tactic to influence their children’s love and affection should seek out professional counseling. It can be challenging to overcome this type of situation without the right guidance. The person who is causing the alienation is psychologically encouraging their kids to treat the innocent parent like they are weak and unimportant.

Actions the targeted ex-spouse can take to avoid being a victim of the situation include learning more about parental alienation and how to deal with it. The alienated parent should remain persistent, firm and continue to act as a role model for their children. The targeted former partner should not allow their kids to gain any ground, act disrespectful and use any threatening language or behavior towards them. The affected parent should also continue to interact and bond with their children daily and to remain proactive about the situation.

Due to the far-reaching effects and emotional trauma that is caused, parental alienation is a form of domestic abuse for the innocent parent, states Psychology Today. It deprives the targeted parent of the ability to nurture, love and interact with their children normally.

This type of situation is not one that can be resolved right away. With the right parenting tactics and support, it is possible to overcome the effects of parental alienation.

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