Legal and Emotional Challenges Created by Parental Alienation

Alienation obviously poses profound challenges for the targeted parent. Not only does it threaten to derail and potentially destroy your relationship with your child forever — alienated children often continue to believe the implanted false narratives as adults – but it also poses huge challenges when you’re negotiating with DCP&P or dealing with criminal charges.

For instance, a brainwashed child might convincingly argue way that you engaged in abuse or neglect, even though you didn’t. When it’s your word against your child’s word, how can you defend your rights and prevent negative outcomes?

The silver lining is that, when caught early enough, Parental Alienation can usually be reversed, and the other parent can even be punished for the brainwashing.

Even though psychologists only developed a name for this constellation of symptoms a few decades ago, evidence of similar practices date back hundreds or even thousands of years. For instance, consider the famous example of the Salem Witch Trials. Back in the very early days of the U.S. colonies, children in Salem, Massachusetts became convinced that several local women were “witches.” These poor women suffered severe punishment, ostracism, and even death as a result of this trumped up and entirely fabricated testimony.

Here is dramatic description of actions that went on during the Salem Witch Trial that illustrate the depth of brainwashing that can occur (from The Salem Witch Trials, 1692):

“The seeds of the hysteria that afflicted Salem Village, Massachusetts were sown in January 1692 when a group of young girls began to display bizarre behavior. The tight-knit community was at a loss to explain the convulsive seizures, blasphemous screaming, and trance-like states that afflicted the youngsters. The physicians called in to examine the girls could find no natural cause of the disturbing behavior. If the source of the affliction was not attributable to a physical malady, the community reasoned that it must be the work of Satan. Witches had invaded Salem…

In March the afflicted girls accused Martha Corey. The three women previously denounced as colluding with the devil were marginal to the community. Martha Corey was different; she was an upstanding member of the Puritan congregation – her revelation as a witch demonstrated that Satan’s influence reached to the very core of the community. Events snowballed as the accusatory atmosphere intensified and reached a fever pitch. During the period from March into the fall many were charged, examined, tried and condemned to death.”

Identifying, stopping and reversing Parental Alienations can be a tough project. However, a qualified New Jersey family law attorney can help you understand the proper steps to take to deal with this problem in the context of your overall DCP&P case.

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