What Will the European Association of Parental Alienation Practitioners mean to Family Law in Europe?

Karen Woodall

In this third article following the launch of the European Association of Parental Alienation Practitioners, I am taking a brief look at what EAPAP will mean in terms of family law.  Whilst I cannot be detailed as each member country has a different legal framework in place, I understand enough about the difference in legal systems in member countries to be able to predict what such an association can do to create the necessary paradigm shifts that allow change to occur.

During the conference I spoke with Dr Simona Valdica from Romania, a country which has criminalised parental alienation. Our discussions confirmed for me that the belief that simply making it illegal to alienate a child will resolve the problem is erroneous. Dr Simona spoke of the work her organisation continues to do in the deeply complex field of serious and entrenched parental alienation and how even in the face…

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Transparency Project: Limits of court’s influence over adult disputes about children

I have just read an excellent summary from the transparency project (link below) about a case from 2011 that has just been published in the UK.

Interesting is the fact that the child was at the time a ward of court, and the parents were still fighting for the child. In 2009 there had been enough evidence to see that the actions of both parents were detrimental to the child. In 2011 the judge summed up so:

The difficulty in the case is that each of them has heard clearly what I have said about the other, but for the most part, have not heard what was said about them … The conflict continues unabated. The mother continues to make allegations which the court has found unsubstantiated in her discussions with other professionals. The father still has no chink of understanding about why it all went wrong in the first place so far as his behaviour was concerned…

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Peace at Last

Poignant story from btg-dad on what it really means to be a father

btg-dad

PeaceNotPas_PeaceAtLast

There are numerous behaviours one can ‘get away with’ by being a Dad. No, I am not referring to childbirth, nor am I referring to parental alienation.

For example I love climbing trees, however it is not deemed socially acceptable for a grown man to walk over a forest alone and then proceed to climb trees and hang upside in joyous celebration of such an achievement.

“One of these days Daddy, you are going to fall over for real!”

I have also never pretended to trip up ‘slap-stick’ style when only in my own company. Prior to being alienated from my three young children I would ‘trip up’ without fail every time I would serve them their evening meal at the dinner table. Each time would result in the same responses; my youngest child G, giggling loudly each time, appearing as if she would never tire of such tomfoolery. My…

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To live a life any less than challenging

btg-dad

PeaceNotPas_ToLiveaLife

Too many of us spend far too much of our lives trying to fit in.

Some individuals are lucky enough to be born with an enviable, but healthy disregard for what others may think.

Individuals that do not need the validation, recognition or reassurance of others.

Individuals that are happy enough with themselves.

Individuals that understand that any strive for absolute perfection is flawed, unrealistic and unachievable.

Individuals that not only adapt to the unpredictability of life but embrace it.

Individuals that vrive on, learn from and grow from the chaos of life.

Individuals that understand that to turn away from the chaos of life is to not live at all.

To not push ourselves to the limit, is to limit life itself.

To live a life any less than challenging, is to not live at all.

btg dad

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The Adverse Childhood Experience of Parental Alienation

Karen Woodall

On Saturday I presented at the Centre for Child Mental Health in London at the conference ‘Too much Pain‘ on the issue of parental alienation as a child mental health issue.  The subject is clearly one which resonated with delegates as many had questions to ask afterwards and we discussed the issues facing children and parents in the context of us having watched the film Resilience at the start of the day.

Watching this film made me realise that the experience of parental alienation is not just about children’s mental health, it is about the impact of their mental health on their physical wellbeing. In fact, at worst, it is a public health issue in which children who are alienated from a parent face the likelihood of having a shortened life expectancy of – wait for it – 20 years less than their peers.  Let me unpack that.

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Can there ever be any excuse for parental alienation?

Old, but nevertheless an insightful look at how one actually gets learn about parental alienation *first hand*.

btg-dad

ExcuseforPAS_PeaceNotPas

Until I had personally experienced parental alienation at first hand, I was not really aware of its existence, neither was I aware of how often it happens. Furthermore I was certainly not aware of its devastating effect on all those involved, in particular the children.

“I now see the world of parental alienation laid out in front me. A sea of helpless and powerless parents.”

I can recall a news story from several years ago of a dad dressing up as batman and staging a protest on the Buckingham palace balcony. This was in fact an incident that was one of several high profile stunts from 2004, all instigated by the Fathers for Justice campaign group. Reflecting back on the news coverage, such security breaches were called ‘unacceptable’ by the media. Fathers for justice would be called such things as ‘notorious’ and little encouragement from the media was given to the public to look…

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UK: Suspended jail sentence for breaching contact order

OK, this is from April, but I am genuinely surprised that it has not ‘surfaced’ before!

A family court in Nottingham sentenced a mother to 56 days for contempt of court. The sentence was suspended for one year which means that should she continue to be ‘unwilling’ in that time period to abide by the terms of the child arrangement order she will go to jail.

A signal against parental alienation, and parents that think they can get away with just not letting absent parents see their children.

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