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Sunday, January 24, 2010


I just read an informative and disturbing article entitled Parental Alienation: Four Facts. In the article, Donald Pennington discusses why parental alienation harms children psychologically and spiritually.

We should know that children feel naturally torn when their parents divorce, so when parents add the extra burden of alienating them further by criticizing or belittling the (usually) non-custodial parent,  children hurt in ways that cut them to the core.

A condition now known as Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) suggests that by engaging in behavior that alienates children from their parents, children suffer from ABUSE by the parent who is contributing to the syndrome.

As single parents, we need to understand that just because we are divorced, even if we hate our ex-spouse, we need to provide a safe environment for our children. And except in cases of extreme sexual, sadistic, or physical abuse, we need to encourage relationships between our children and their other parent.

When I was working at the University of Chicago, I met a child once whose mother threw acid in his face. Who do you think that child called when he wanted somebody to comfort him? Obviously his mother suffered from some deeply disturbing psychological illness and should not have been allowed into that child's life until (and if) she became emotionally well. But most of us are not divorced from psychotic individuals and we need to recognize our child's love for his or her other parent.

Please read Parental Alienation: Four Facts to learn more about this disturbing trend.


  1. bohzo (hello)

    I liked this article, I was a single parent myself so I know of such hardships.

    Have a great day!


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