Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Combating False Allegations of Parental Alienation (PAS)

Abusers sometimes use false allegations of parental alienation against the protective parent to help deflect away from the abuse allegations and to turn the tables on the protective parent. Unfortunately, it works. Thus, as a protective parent, you need to make sure you have evidence to prove that you have not alienated your child(ren) from the abusive parent.

For protective parents trying to prove that their child has been sexually (or physically) abused by the opposing party in a custody case (whom I will refer to as "the abuser"), one of the most difficult things for protective parents to do is to allow the child to go to visits with the abuser during the pendency of the case, especially if the abuser has been granted unsupervised visitation pending the trial.

However, it is absolutely critical to follow the Court’s Orders. If you withhold visitation and are found in contempt of court, you could risk losing custody of your child to the abuser. It is equally important to appear to encourage your child’s relationship with the abuser during the pendency of the case because if you do not, it will be used against you. One of the biggest factors in custody cases is that judges want to give custody to the parent who will encourage the child’s relationship with the other parent.

Obviously, this sounds crazy when you are convinced that the other parent is sexually abusing your child, but you have to be ever mindful of it and actually do things that will prove that you have encouraged the child’s relationship with the other parent, despite what you believe. When a protective parent talks badly about the abusive parent, allows others to do so, or does other things to make the child fear or hate the abuser, then the protective parent is in danger of being labeled as having alienated the child from the other parent.

Of course, one of the most critical factors in proving parental alienation is that the child actually has expressed or otherwise exhibited hatred or fear of the abusive parent. These cases can make a protective parent a bit crazy because it should be perfectly normal for a sexually abused child to fear or hate the abuser, but it is more likely that the child actually loves the abusive parent.

Moreover, if evidence of alienation is shown in the custody (psychological) evaluation or any other evidence (including the abuser’s own testimony) at trial, it will be used against the protective parent and could work to give the abuser custody of the child.

It sounds crazy to do nice things for the abuser, but it will help you in your case and fend off any attempt by him to say you have alienated the child from him.

Here are some ways to make sure you have evidence that you are NOT alienating your child from the abuser. With all of these, you need to take photographs of the items or make copies of them to keep for evidence:
  • Have the child make gifts and/or cards for the abuser (birthday & all holidays).
  • Make sure the child calls the abuser at least every other evening, preferably from a cell phone so you will have a record of the telephone number called.
  • In writing (email is fine) inform the abuser in advance of all regular doctor and dental appointments, and teacher’s conferences, and invite him to attend (unless you have a domestic violence restraining order against him), and if he does not attend, send him an email letting him know what happened and what the doctor said or recommended .
  • Set up and use ourfamilywizard.com as a communication tool between you and the abuser.
  • Make copies of all school report cards, progress reports, notes from teachers, and examples of the child’s school work and send these to the abuser with a cover letter saying please find X enclosed. You can send US Mail with tracking so you have proof it was received without the recipient sign for it. Keep copies of your letters and keep the originals or copies of the things you have sent.
  • Send the abuser school pictures, even a few extra for his family, again with a cover letter, and keep a copy for yourself.
  • Be polite and professional in all your communications with the abuser. Remember, everything you say can and will be used against you. He is probably taping your every call.
  • Do not send adult communication through the children -- always communicate it directly to the abuser in writing.

5 Comments:

Blogger Shelley, the NCTeddyBearLady said...

I have read your post as well as your longer article on "Protecting Your Child from Sexual Abuse in Custody Cases". As the victim of child physical abuse and a teacher who has dealt with many cases of child sexual abuse over the years, I strongly support your position and suggestions. That said, however, I would like to point out that there are cases where the "protective" parent as you call them is not in fact protecting their child but instead making a false allegation in order to retain custody. You have not addressed this issue at all nor have you posted any links to resources for families dealing with this issue. It would be completely appropriate to do so. Not only are individuals who do this hurting their children, they make it harder for all legitimate cases of physical and/or sexual abuse to be appropriately addressed. I would appreciate any links you can offer on the subject of false claims of abuse, the ramifications for children caught in this manipulative and destructive situation and how to appropriately protect both the innocent parent from loss of contact with their child and the child from the psychological damage inherent in being told they are the victim of abuse when it is not so and/or being coached to make claims of abuse when they, the child, knows they are not true.

Wednesday, 02 September, 2009  
Blogger Kandice said...

Im having alot of custody problems, if you would please read my blog and let me know what you thnk. http://3waybattle.blogspot.com/

Tahnk you so much

Thursday, 12 November, 2009  
Blogger Qasim Bilal said...

Nice post, Great blog.
Child Custody Lawyers

Saturday, 25 August, 2012  
Blogger Rick James said...

These are some things that I didn't know about a child custody attorney...thank you for the information, I will have to remember this - man divorce is hard.

Wednesday, 17 October, 2012  
Blogger Melissa Gaudet said...

I am a mother being accused of parental alienation. The father is mentally unstable and physically abused me in the past.(I have no proof only allot of witnesses and letters he wrote to my family saying he was sorry as i was to scared to report it or leave for that matter) and has on his own accord been in costa rica for 3 years i did not know he was there till a year ago. he is claiming that i have kidnapped my daughter and am brainwashing her. he has called cps and the police have been to my house for well child checks over 10 times till i moved to a different county a month ago. he would call randomly sometimes 6 months in between i allowed all of these calls even though he was not physically present or financially helping for over a year and a half in April 2012 he had my daughter close herself in a bedroom and Skype with her he was asking only questions about me does your mom do drugs? does she ever hurt you? are you ever afraid. He was clearly recording these conversations (he has admitted to recording her for the last 3 years) after 10 minutes of these inappropriate questions i told her she needed to say good bye and finish her homework. I sat on this for a day or so and then sent him a email stating how inappropriate the conversation was that he is not around anyways so until we went before a judge i am not subjecting her to those lines of questioning any longer. He has not called but 7 times n the last 3 years and is in rear ages $12,000 i have had to meat with cps submit to drug testing and have the police call or come by all the time he made a website in my child's name that she found saying what a bad mom i am and that she is kidnapped and being brainwashed.Since she brought that to my attention I found 20 different videos websites and fake Facebook profiles all claiming these things about me i went before a judge in 2009 with a show cause and she dismissed the case cause he was no longer at that address in fact he was in a different country. DCSE has restricted his passport until he pays the rear ages. He says "he will not pay the ransom to a kidnapper"He did how ever sent a letter to the judge stating that i am violating the phone visitation order and I am actually being taken to trial. I even pointed out to the judge that this man has been absent for 3 years and that i came before her with a case that was dismissed cause the address vacant. I also brought his mother down from salt lake city to defend me. It did no good I am going on trial in August and did not qualify for a public defender although my enitre income goes to rent and daycare. She did however appoint a G.A.L. at my request. What do I do I can not afford a lawyer and am so sick of these websites that I can not get down I cannot get anyone to help me as we have no rights to costa rica I need help and have no one to turn to this is the first time in many searches that I feel someone can not only understand my case but might be able to help me.
If you can please e mail me

Tuesday, 28 May, 2013  

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