Quote: Love is not a power game by Claudia Moscovici

“Love is not a power game for anyone capable of this emotion. It’s the deepest and most significant bond human beings form with one another and the foundation of our lives. If you encounter a man who gives any signs that he regards love as a game and you as a “prize” to be won, fold your cards and quickly leave the table. Or, better yet, refuse to engage with him at all. Any intimate relationship with a psychopath is a gamble where you risk losing everything and from which you have nothing to gain.” –Claudia Moscovici

Psychopaths are predators that prey, and feed on other people. Psychopaths lack empathy, compassion or emotion as most people know it. Instead, they are addicted to adrenaline, and excitement of hurting others.

How do you know that you are in a relationship with a psychopath? Or know you are dealing with one?

Read the warning signs, and decode what they mean…

via HOW TO IDENTIFY A PSYCHOPATHIC BOND.

Posted in Abuse Allegations & Documentation, Family Court News, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

An Alienated Parent Watches “The Unique Connection” by Pandora

I was watching a video by Pandora called “The Unique Connection“. In the video, children are blind folded then led into a room full of women and asked to identify, with their senses and intuition, which woman is their mother. 

Little hands reached for bigger hands… a tiny rosebud nose rubbed against a much larger, softer nose seeking a familiar scent… Blindfolded and without sight, each child searched for the special, one of a kind woman who is “mom”. And when found, there were joyful smiles, hugs, tears and an outpouring of love.

As a mother being alienated from her children by an abusive ex The Unique Connection gave me hope that my children will keep a part of our own “unique connection” in their hearts. That, no matter the separation we now experience, our bond, and our love will remain strong. 

I would like to believe that somehow, someway, my children, even if blindfolded like the children in this video or even if forcibly separated by an abusive and controlling father (aided by an unjust family court) would know and recognize that I am their mother. 

I would like to believe that in a room full of other women, that my children would be able to single me out from all the rest… Maybe my daughter JJ would recognize what she calls my “Mom Jeans“… the well worn denim with a slit cut up the leg. JJ was so excited to show me that her doll also had a similar pair of jeans, also with a slit cut up the leg. Maybe JJ would feel the soft leather of my high heeled boots. She would demand I take the boots off, so she could wear them, sashaying around the room like a diva. When I least expected it, JJ would kick the boots off, aiming for me. Like an arrow, the boots would launch through the air, and I would fall to the floor with a fake injury. JJ would laugh, her melodic voice rising into the air like the ring of a church bell.

Maybe my son DJ would recognize the vibrant scent of lavender, lemongrass or maychang, my favorite essential oils. I enjoyed teaching my children about essential oils. I let them make their own perfumes and bath oils. DJ was a very active toddler, and inspired my interest in essential oils because I was seeking something that may soothe him, and help him sleep. When he was little, I would curl up next to DJ in his bed, and rub an essential oil on his temples. I would tell him a special story about “the gold in his hair” … The fine baby hairs at his temple are the golden color of sunshine on a summer day, while the rest of his hair is a deep brown color. I told DJ that an Angel threaded gold into his hair to remind him of how special he is. And, if at anytime life gets hard, DJ only needed to see the gold in his hair, to be reminded of how special he is, how loved.

My children are now growing up without a mother because of the unjust, and illegal, court order issued by anti-family court.  I want my children to know that I love them with all of my heart. It is not my choice to be apart from my children. Due to the parental alienation, and forcible separation by court order, my children are, in a sense, blind folded. It is a very real possibility that my children would see me on the street or maybe in a store or park somewhere…and I wonder, would they recognize me? 

— Emily Court, 2015

“The Unique Connection” by The Official Pandora (YouTube): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DRoqk_z2Lgg
Published on Apr 13, 2015

As a small experiment of women’s uniqueness and the special bond between a mother and child, we met up with 6 wonderful women, and asked them to let us blindfold their most precious loved ones. Their children!

How we did it:
The children were guided towards the group of women, and using their senses and intuition asked to try to find the one they believed to be their mother. Anxiety, love and a bit of heartfelt tears filled the room as children from the age of 3-9 tried and succeed in finding the one and only they could call mum!

All women are unique in shape, personality and heart, and so is the beautiful connection and precious love we saw this day.

Celebrate the woman in your heart
www.pandora.net

Music: “Staircase” by Dan Leigh, more of his music can be found on musync.com

Posted in Inspirational Quotes/Scripture, Our Family Albulm, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Article “You Can’t Unhit a Child” Explores Lasting Effects of Corporal Punishment

Sarah Newman writes an insightful article on the lasting effects to a child’s psyche in “You Can’t Unhit a Child: Anxiety and Corporal Punishment” . The article discusses Ms. Newman’s own traumatic experiences of physical and verbal abuse, at the hands of her father, and a recent study from Duke University on corporal punishment.

Researchers at Duke University did a study on corporal punishment and found that the effects of hitting a child are lasting, and negatively impact a child’s relationship with their parent. The study found that even if a parent acts affectionate towards a child, it does not lessen the damage inflicted by corporal punishment. 

Duke University researchers interviewed more than 1,000 women and their children (ages 8-10) in 8 different countries. The results of the study can be found in the Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology.

Jennifer E. Lansford of the Social Science Research Institute at Duke, and lead study author, reports that children often feel “confused” when a parent hits them  “and then smooth things over gradually by smothering them with love.” The attachment between a parent and child is also harmed when a child does not know what to expect from a parent, and when fear is instilled into the parent-child bond.

Spanking has been linked to post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and behavioral problems in children. Researchers found that once you hit a child, there is no way to undo the fear and “cognitive dissonance” it creates.

Sarah Newman says she was hit as a child by her father, and the impact left lasting emotional and psychological scars.  Newman said she did not understand what she was being punished for but she did understand the fear. Newman recalls, What hitting taught me was that a monster lived inside my father. I had to remember that or how would I avoid seeing the monster again? At the same time I had to forget it because I wasn’t allowed to treat him differently…” 

Newman also said she was forced to “forgive” her father after being hit, and was forced to show affection and act like everything is okay, when that was not what she truly thought or felt. Not being allowed to talk about being hit, or process what happened, made Newman question herself…if the incident really happened.. she describes it as “crazy making”.

Love and concern for a child cannot be translated into actions that do not communicate or demonstrate love. The article recommends using non-physical punishment, with the goal of teaching a child.

Title: “You Can’t Unhit a Child: Anxiety and Corporal Punishment” 

Author: Sarah Newman, MA (Psych Central)

LinkYou Can’t Unhit a Child: Anxiety and Corporal Punishment | World of Psychology.

RESOURCES:

American Humane Society, “steps to learn more about how you can help stop child abuse and neglect“: http://www.americanhumane.org/children/stop-child-abuse/report-child-abuse/

Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline is staffed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with professional crisis counselors who have access to a database of tens of thousands of emergency, social service, and support resources. The service is available to anyone with a telephone: children who face confusion, parents in despair, mandatory reporters and other adults who are uncertain about the next best step when faced with questions related to abuse and neglect. All calls are anonymous. Contact them at 1.800.4.A.CHILD (1.800.422.4453).

Circle of Parents: “A friendly, supportive environment led by parents and other caregivers where anyone in a parenting role can openly discuss the successes and challenges of raising children.” (Visit the site and click on the map to find a group in your state). Also includes “Parenting Resources” tip sheet: http://www.circleofparents.org/

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Broken Arrow by Pixie Lott : Song to Alienated Children & Targeted Parents

Retrieved: http://www.desktopnexus.com/groups/gothic/image/1584653/ THANKS FOR WONDERFUL CREATIONS & CREDITS TO:WILDFIRE2003 http://wildfire2003.deviantart.com/

The song “Broken Arrow” by Pixie Lott is meant to be a love song but the lyrics remind me of what it is like to be an alienated child, and reminds me of the struggle of a targeted parent trying to maintain a relationship with a child who has been taught to hate or reject them. 

“And you’re sitting in the front row,
Wanna be first in line,
Waiting by my window,
Giving me all your time,
You could be my hero,
If only I could let go,
But his love is still in me,
Like a broken arrow…”

The “love” of an abusive or alienated parent is a broken arrow, aimed for the heart. It is a love based on conditions, a love that controls and a love that suffocate the identity of the child.

“He’s the thorn in my flesh
That I can’t take out
He’s stealing my breath..”

The lyrics of this song are strongly suggestive of trauma bonds and the challenges of trying to reconnect to a child or parent after your relationship has been severed or damaged. Often alienated children will also struggle forming trust or relationships with others as well. It does happen that an alienated child will completely reject a parent, and refuse any contact.

“What do you do
When your hearts in two places?
You feel great but you’re torn inside.
You feel love but you just can’t embrace it..”

Sending love and prayers to all families deal with parental alienation, Domestic Violence by Proxy and/or struggle to break free from abuse. 

Pixie Lott is an English singer, songwriter and actress. She sings pop and R&B music.  “Broken Arrow” was featured in the movie Beastly.

— Emily Court, 2015

 

 

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Ex has Strange Relationship with First Cousin, Children Suffer

My children are victims of abuse, and have witnessed domestic violence. Both children suffer from serious emotional and behavioral problems, and have been previously diagnosed with PTSD and anxiety. All of the symptoms represented in this picture, my children have struggled with. The unjust family court in Hennepin County has blamed me for causing all of my children’s problems, and refused to acknowledge the abuse. As a result, I was stripped of custody. Even as the alleged abuser has sole custody, both children continue to struggle.

 

To this I have to respond… “Michelle Evills” (not her real name) aka “Baby Michelle” (Mr. X’s nickname for her) the teenager who ran away from home to live with her 42 year old first cousin, and wrote in her letters to Mr. X that she “loves” him (she also says he is “sexy” and refers to him as “hun”) is now caring for vulnerable, at risk children!

RESUME:

“Personal Care Assistant – Kustom Care, LLC

March 2011 – Present (3 years 11 months)B— Park

Helping children with behavioral disorders overcome struggles and hurdles. Assisting them while teaching independance and building confidence.”

I just want “Michelle” to know that you spelled INDEPENDENCE wrong and second, you should be reported to the state licensing board and to your employer for the physical, mental and emotional abuse you have inflicted on my special needs son. My son is traumatized, and being denied needed psychological testing, and, in my opinion, Michelle has not only exacerbated his condition but directly contributed to the abuse and neglect of my child.

I have ample documentation for everything I state here, including medical reports, police reports, CPS reports and independent comments and drawings from my children.

Inside the red circle is an image of teeth marks. This is a wound Michelle inflicted on my special needs son. Michelle told the police she needed to bite him to “control” him because he has Aspberger’s (never formally diagnosed).

My children are also being emotionally damaged because Michelle is having a strange relationship with their father, who is Michelle’s first cousin. It’s pretty sad when your children are fighting because “Daddy can’t marry Michelle because she is his cousin, and he will go to jail!”. It’s pretty sad when your children are asking when is Michelle going to get a boyfriend or get married. My kids see the other female adults in their life (their teachers, therapists, family members etc) have boyfriends, or get married and have babies, and wonder what is going on in their own family.

My children should not be forced to live in a home where a 50 year old man is having a strange relationship with his 25 year old first cousin, who ran away from home at age 17 so they could (direct quote from letters these two wrote to each other) “live in love together, forever”. Mr. X wrote a letter to Michelle stating (direct quote) “you make me the luckiest man in the world“. Mr. X also told me that he has to “hug and kiss Michelle” becauseI made a promise” and “no one else will do it for her“. Mr. X claims it is just an “emotional relationship” and that nothing is going on…

You just have to look at the history of Mr. X to be alarmed. I was once the 17 year old girl lured off an Internet chat room to meet Mr. X. Mr. X admitted to me that he was talking to other teenagers but chose me because we share a “special connection”. I later found photographs belonging to Mr. X, indicating he had this kind of relationships with other teenagers.

I never wanted an intimate relationship with Mr. X, it was forced on me. All the time Mr. X said “nothing is going on” and that we are “only friends” … no one knew the nightmare I was living in. This went on for years until I became pregnant with my son, and he could not deny what was happening. Mr. X such a liar, that when the relationship ended 8 years later, he refused to acknowledge our relationship and referred to me as “the roommate”. I also found out Mr. X was married for most of our relationship; and he committed a fraud on the US government by marrying a much older woman so she could get a green card. Just another indicator that Mr. X is not capable of having a healthy relationship with women. 

So when Mr. X found another 17 year old girl, who he moved into our home, while the children and I are living on the street, homeless due to domestic violence, I am concerned. There is also a long family history of alleged  abuse and incest. Michelle is now 25, and bought a house and a car for Mr. X. –Buying a house and a car with someone is usually an indicator that you are in a serious relationship with someone. Then again, maybe that is me just being “crazy” as Mr. X claims??

Expert report documenting abuse and concerns. The report was thrown out by Judge Bobo, and Guardian ad Litem Jamie Manning refused to investigate the allegations in the report or contact collateral witnesses.

And now my pre-teen daughter is being forced to sleep in the same room as these two cousins, who are sharing a bed together! “Michelle” told the children that she needs to sleep in the same bed as Mr. X because “It is cold in my room in the basement and I am lonely“. My poor daughter has no privacy, and reports that Michelle walks into the room when she is getting dressed and it is so bad, that my daughter is forced to lock herself in the bathroom to get dressed!

And if that is not bad enough, Michelle is telling people that she is my children’s “mother” and “legal guardian”. When people mistake Michelle for being the mother of MY children–Michelle identifies herself as their mother. Which is a total lie!

Mr. X refers to Michelle as the “live in PCA”. What kind of PCA bites a child? I demanded proof that the children’s therapists prescribed a live-in PCA and Mr. X has yet to prove that.

I love my children, and am more than capable of giving my children a good home. I have taken classes in parenting children with special needs through NAMI, and have taken classes on parenting children who have experienced trauma or abuse through other organizations. I have always been willing to seek help for my children and my family, and utilize needed resources. I also am an active volunteer in my community, and have experience working with children and vulnerable adults, including adults who suffer with mental illness and behavioral/emotional challenges. I am more than capable of caring for my own children, and handling their special needs. I would never abandon my children, or leave them. I would never allow anyone to hurt my children in any way. If I found out someone in my life hurt my children–as Michelle has–I would be actively working to bring them up on criminal charges when the police were investigating. I would also completely remove that person from the lives of my children, getting a restraining order if necessary. Instead, Mr. X had aided and enabled Michelle’s dysfunctional behavior.

I was forced out of my children’s lives due to domestic violence by proxy and the unjust orders of family court. I will never stop fighting to keep my kids safe and to bring them home. 

— Emily Court, 2015

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Should a Guardian ad Litem Facilitate Mediation? My Experiences with GAL & Mediation

Should a Guardian ad Litem (GAL) be allowed to mediate between parties, assisting in coming to agreements about custody and parenting time, and facilitating communication? The Minnesota Rules of Guardian ad Litem Procedure say no. However, Guardians often assume the responsibility of mediator, or facilitate back and forth communication between parties, voluntarily. Judges also frequently call Guardians to be present during mediation, which often results in the Guardian performing mediation or influencing the process.

 Let’s start the discussion…What are YOUR thoughts on the role of a Guardian ad Litem? Should they perform mediation? And what should happen if a GAL violates the rules, and acts outside of their duties? Post your thoughts and experiences (use anon name to protect your identity) in the comments below!

************

In 2008, Hennepin County 4th Judicial District, Guardian ad Litem, Jamie L. Manning facilitated a mediation between my abusive ex partner, Mr. X and his attorney “Peter Banning”, and myself (at the time I had a pro bono attorney). I did not know at the time that Guardians are prohibited from facilitating a mediation, this was done with the full knowledge of Judge ReddHerring. Ms. Manning took extensive notes on her own legal pad, which became part of my family’s file. However, the Guardian ad Litem program will not let a party view or copy their own file. In comparison, CPS records can be requested, and redacted for privacy.

A cheerful chime announced the silver elevator doors opening to the 5th floor of the Family Justice Center. I stepped onto the muted gray carpet, squared my shoulders and took a deep breath, it seemed every time I went to court, things got worse for my family.

In April 2006, I fled an abusive relationship with two traumatized children. My children ages 3 and 5, both displayed behavioral and psychological problems, related to abuse. And both began to independently talk about abuse inflicted from their father. At age 3, my daughter was barely speaking but since I fled our home, her words tumbled out… “Daddy hit me”, “Daddy call me stupey (stupid)”… were common. Mr. X threatened that he would take the children (direct quote) “so I know how it feels to be hurt” and in June 2006, he filed for sole custody. We had been in court ever since. I was steadily losing custody of both children to the abuser who had hurt them. This man was also a wanted fugitive with 3 active warrants, a lengthy criminal and civil history, a history of various addictions and carrying on a strange relationship with his first cousin, who ran away from home at age 17 to live with him. Incredibly, while the children and I were homeless, and sleeping in our van or staying in shelters, Mr. X moved his teenage first cousin into our family home so they could (direct quote, taken from letters they wrote to each other), “Live in love, together, forever”.

I could not understand why Ms. Manning and the court was favoring Mr. X to the detriment of my children. Over a dozen documented allegations of child abuse had been made by my children, with reports from treating therapists, CPS and police. I am the fit, loving mom with no criminal or drug history. I had found stable housing. Had a stable job. And worked hard to re-stabilize my family. And yet, I was being criticized by the court, told it was wrong to get help for my children, and told not to speak about the abuse. My opinion of the view of Ms. Manning, supported by the judge, is that if you talk about abuse or safety concerns with the children, you are engaging in hostile behavior, and are not co-parenting in a positive way. The remedy: limit parenting time or take custody away entirely. This was happening to me, in gradual steps (I lost custody entirely in 2010). Where is the justice in the Family Justice Center?

Brightly colored art decorates the white walls, paintings and drawings created by adults with developmental disabilities portrayed a world of hope, one I had never realized in the Family Justice Center. To the left of the hallway is the infamous Room 535, where my custody case had been held since 2006. Across from Room 535 is a row of windows facing the Minneapolis skyline. Skyscrapers of various heights zig zagged into the horizon like a child’s tower of building blocks. To the right of the courtroom is a narrow hall with small meeting rooms. Ms. Manning was sitting in one meeting room with Mr. X and his attorney, Peter Banning. Ms. Manning usually sat with Mr. X, in the private meeting room, and they walked into court together. Ms. Manning would sometimes run out to greet me but always with a motive. She would usually question me to gain information for the upcoming hearing; and was known to twist or distort my words and use them against me. Ms. Manning never asked about the children, she has an attitude like she knows what is best, and knows better than the parents. I sat on a green cloth bench chair waiting for my attorney. I pulled my Bible out of my bag and began to read my favorite chapter, the Book of Isaiah, gathering strength.

My attorney arrived and briefly spoke to Ms. Manning. He said it would be best if Mr. X and I could come to an agreement, and that Ms. Manning offered to facilitate. I was wary, knowing Mr. X often broke his word, and knowing that he still meant me harm, even if using my children to do so (domestic violence by proxy). Still, I agreed. What other choice did I have? I sat in one room, and Mr. X and Peter Banning in the other. Ms. Manning scuttled between the two rooms, her yellow legal pad in hand, taking notes. Ms. Manning made suggestions about parenting time, including suggesting how the time should be divided, and how to manage holiday time. Ms. Manning relayed messages from Mr. X to me, communicating what he wanted. And Ms. Manning drafted the proposed parenting time order on her yellow legal pad, and read the order into the record.

My attorney was hopeful, and I wanted to be also. I know that Mr. X is a game player, and the calm façade he shows to the world is not what is boiling underneath his easy smile, and smooth words. As I had predicted, there would be trouble. The custody agreement barely held up for a few months before we were back in court, and Mr. X was again seeking sole custody of both children, and again waging ridiculous false allegations against me. It seemed we were just going through the motions, making everything appear legit for what really was happening – a fit, loving mother was losing custody to a dangerous abuser.

— Emily Court, 2015

Also posting an e-mail to show, at another time, GAL Jamie L. Manning  offered to facilitate a meeting with Mr. X and I, where she offered to help Mr. X and I establish a summer visitation schedule, and facilitate communication between the both of us. Below this e-mail, I will include the Rules of Procedure mandating the responsibilities of a Guardian below.

Manning, Jamie

6/25/09

To: —–

—–,

I am sorry that I have been unable to contact you.  I’ve had several emergency cases that I have had to deal with.  I am glad that you and M— are agreeing on additional parenting time.  Maybe the three of us should meet and decide about an appropriate summer schedule.  What is your work schedule like?  Jamie

What is a Guardian ad Litem not allowed to do?

  • Enforce a Court order. A guardian ad litem cannot make a party comply with a temporary order, but is responsible for notifying the Court when a parent does not follow a Court order.
  • Act as a mediator between parties.
  • Put any party’s interest ahead of the child(ren)’s interests.
  • http://www.mncourts.gov/district/4/?page=650

General Rules of Practice, Appointment of a Guardian ad Litem

 Rule 903.04. Other Roles Precluded Subd. 1.

Generally. A guardian ad litem under the supervision of the Office of the State Court Administrator shall not be ordered to, and shall not perform, the following roles in a case in which the person serves as a guardian ad litem:

  • (a) custody evaluator pursuant to Minnesota Statutes § 518.167; or
  • (b) parenting time evaluator; or
  • (c) parenting time consultant; or
  • (d) family group decision making facilitator; or
  • (e) early neutral evaluator; or
  • (f) mediator, as that role is prescribed in Minnesota Statutes § 518.619 and Rule 310 of the Minnesota Rules of Family Court Procedure; or
  • (g) arbitrator or individual authorized to decide disputes between parties;
  • (h) or parenting time expeditor, as that role is prescribed in Minnesota Statutes §§ 518.619 and 518.1751; or
  • (i) substitute decision-maker under Minnesota Statutes § 253B.092; or
  • (j) evaluator charged with conducting a home study under Minnesota Statutes §§ 245A.035 or 259.41; or (k) attorney for the child.

 518.619 CUSTODY OR VISITATION; MEDIATION SERVICES.

The purpose of the mediation proceeding is to reduce acrimony which may exist between the parties and to develop an agreement that is supportive of the child’s best interests. The mediator shall use best efforts to effect a settlement of the custody or parenting time dispute, but shall have no coercive authority.

https://www.revisor.mn.gov/court_rules/rule.php?name=gp-903

NOTE: Jamie Manning acting the capacity of a Guardian ad Litem while simultaneously conducting mediation between the parties IS exercising considerable coercive authority. Jamie has actually made implied or direct threats to me that if I do not comply with her directives, I will lose custody and/or parenting time (which has happened).

 

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Thoughts on Blog Post: What is PAS? (Parental Alienation Syndrome)

Emily Court:

I agree that Parental Alienation and Domestic Violence by Proxy do exist. However, I disagree with Dr. Gardner, and believe his application of PAS is dangerous, and has damaged the validity of parental alienation. Dr. Gardner’s PAS theory has perpetrated a gender bias, and created a divide, of mothers against fathers, when in reality, the problems parents are facing in family court have to do with systemic failures that rob fit, loving parents of custody of their children, and deny parental rights. And too often, abusers win custody at the detriment of children. 

Dr. Gardner was a paid expert court witness, the majority of his clients were fathers accused of domestic violence or child abuse. He was an expert speaker, whose career became famous because of PAS. Dr. Gardner’s PAS is not based on systematic research; rather, he developed this theory through his personal observations and work as an expert witness. The PAS criteria used by Gardner, are basically cut/paste and built from the ruins of his earlier (the widely discredited) test for determining whether children were fabricating allegations of sexual abuse, the “Sexual Abuse Legitimacy Scale” (SAL Scale). The only appellate court to rule on the admissibility of the SAL Scale held it inadmissible because there was no showing that it had “some reasonable degree of recognition and acceptability among the spectrum of scientific or medical experts in the field” (Page v. Zordan, 564 So. 2nd 500, Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 1990).

Dr. Gardner provides no scientific data to support his theories about PAS, and most of his articles on the subject have not appeared in peer-reviewed medical journals, which require analysis by fellow professionals before publication.PAS also isn’t listed as a “syndrome” in the American Psychiatric Association’s manual of such disorders.
The Parental Alienation Syndrome:
Is It Scientific? http://www.leadershipcouncil.org/1/res/dallam/3.html

Scientific and Professional Rejection of PAS (developed by Dr. Gardner): http://www.dvleap.org/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=kQAngavEi6E%3D&tabid=173

Dr. Gardner used PAS as an “abuse excuse” to help fathers win court, by discrediting the mothers claiming abuse happened as being an “alienator” whose testimony cannot be trusted, and thereby labeling the mother with a kind of mental illness. Dr. Gardner believed women made abuse allegations against a former partner because they were sexually frustrated, and upset about the end of the relationship. This perpetrates an adversarial he said/she said environment in court, by diverting attention from the alleged abuse to casting suspicion, and assigning blame to one party. Abuse allegations should be taken seriously, and properly investigated. Dr. Gardner believes that 90 percent of the allegations of abuse against children in custody cases are false, whether they involve physical, emotional or sexual abuse. Dr. Gardner also believed that mothers found, by his unscientific and unreliable methods, to be alienators should be sent an intimidating and strong message from the courts including financial sanctions, jail time and loss of custody. This itself creates alienation — indeed, many parents report the Courts, and unjust court orders, are actually alienating them from their children.

“The mother must know that any obstructionism on her part will be immediately reported to the judge, either by the therapist or though the guardian ad litem or child advocate. The court must be willing to impose sanctions such as fines or jail. The threat of loss of primary custody can also help such mothers ‘remember to cooperate. — Dr Richard Gardner, American Fatherhood.

Dr. Gardner also implemented “threat therapy” to forcibly reunite children, even those alleging abuse happened, with a parent. Some children have been jailed and involuntarily held in psychiatric facilities as part of threat therapy. There are many modern versions of Dr. Gardner’s work implemented in the US, and other courts around the world.

Alternatively, Benjamin D. Garber believes that Dr. Gardner’s PAS theory confuses cause and effect. He cautions that it is very easy for a presumption of alienation “to take on a life of its own without proper consideration of the many alternative (and often more likely) causes of a child’s distress during parental separation and divorce. PARENTAL ALIENATION SYNDROME: FRYE V GARDNER IN THE FAMILY COURTS (PART 2 OF 2): http://expertpages.com/news/parental_alienation_syndrome2.htm

Further, in cases where domestic violence is present, the dynamic of parental alienation is a little different because the alienating behavior is part of the abuse dynamic, and often occurs throughout the relationship. For example- an abuser may teach the children to disrespect the other parent, calling them names, or even engaging in abusive parents. Domestic Violence by Proxy is the term commonly used to label alienating behavior in the context of abuse, it means that an abuser uses the children as a weapon to hurt or gain control of a partner who has left, and has no access to.

Also worth reading about is the Grieco case. In February 1998, Nathan Grieco, 16, of North Huntingdon (PA) was found dead in his bedroom, a belt around his neck. His death came after years of custody disputes between his mother, Karen Scott, and his father, Louis Grieco. Dr. Gardner found that mother, Ms. Scott. was an alienator, and ordered threat therapy for Nathan. Nathan was alleging that his father was physically abusive to him, and told the family court judge that he did not want to visit his father. Both Dr. Gardner and the court were unrepentant even after the suicide, and it was only after an exposé in the local newspaper that custody arrangements for the two surviving boys were changed.
Casualties of a Custody War: http://old.post-gazette.com/custody/parttwo.asp

Related: 

Dr. Gardner Advises Courts: Mothers Cooperate Best When Threatened

 

Originally posted on PARENTS HEALING FROM ESTRANGEMENT- #PAS:

Gardner’s definition of PAS is:

1. The Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) is a disorder that arises primarily in the context of child-custody disputes. 

2. Its primary manifestation is the child’s campaign of denigration against a parent, a campaign that has no justification. 

3. It results from the combination of a programming (brainwashing) of a parent’s indoctrinations and the child’s own contributions to the vilification of the targeted parent.

Excerpted from: Gardner, R.A. (1998). The Parental Alienation Syndrome, Second Edition, Cresskill, NJ: Creative Therapeutics, Inc.

http://www.breakthroughparenting.com/PAS.htm

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