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Parents Who Have Successfully Fought Parental Alienation Syndrome

Filed under: General — MurrayBacon @ 7:24 pm Mon 26th March 2012

Dr. Jayne Major’s article gives many useful ideas. The comments it makes about caught$ are probably somewhat unrealistic to hope for in NZ, as many “judges” in NZ, are too slow to deliver much useful action…..

Parents Who Have Successfully Fought Parental Alienation Syndrome
by Jayne A. Major, Ph.D.

Nothing stirs up passions more than the controversy generated when parents are at war over the custody of a child. A controversy is an issue where evidence on both sides can make a compelling case. It is never black and white, but when people have their emotions aroused, an issue can quickly turn into two polar opposites. Fear takes over reason, incomplete facts become evidence, and court calendars become jammed with repeat visits to a judge to try to bring sanity to what is unlikely to ever be sane. On top of this, social movements are promoting one side over another in their clamor for justice. Politicians are lobbied to pass laws to bring order to chaos. Gender wars are fueled and lives are destroyed.

My exposure to custody wars came from the mothers and fathers attending my Breakthrough Parenting® classes at The Parent Connection, Inc., an agency that I founded in Los Angeles in 1983. Many of the parents in my classes were litigating over child custody. Most said that they wanted to settle the case, but none of them would settle by giving up all access to their child, which seemed to be the only other alternative open to them. It was disturbing to see that in many of these cases, the child was behaving outrageously, to the point of cursing one of their parents, and kicking, spitting, and calling them stupid, mean and horrible.

What can you do when one parent is intractable and vitriolic? What can you do when the child becomes caught up in the fight and starts taking sides? I came to realize that this level of conflict in custody disputes was a fallout from sweeping societal changes.

What has changed?
In the 1960’s and the 1970’s, feminists told fathers that they should take a more active role in raising their children. Women were going to work, going back to college and pursuing careers as never before. A shift then began, and fathers became more involved in the day-to-day care of their children than was true in previous generations.

As rigidity about parental roles began to fall away, the tender yearsdoctrine was still in place. This doctrine presumed that by virtue of the fact that a woman was the mother of a child, that she must be the superior parent. In the early 1970’s several states passed “no-fault” divorce laws, where anyone who wanted out of a marriage was free to leave. Some have called it the “no guilt laws.” There was a proliferation of divorce that was historically unprecedented.

After a family breakup, many fathers wanted to continue to be involved with the care of their children. Suddenly, they found that they had no legal right to have custody of their children unless the mother agreed to it.

Due to the lobbying efforts of James Cook, founder of the Joint Custody Association, who was caught up in this problem himself, the California legislature successfully passed the first joint custody laws. Joint custody was widely seen as a better way of handling the evolving problem of how to share child custody. It was believed that it would lead to fewer fights over the custody of children because it was more equal. Other states also passed joint custody laws. These laws helped to level the playing field for fathers.

The majority of mothers and fathers welcomed joint custody. Others did not. As with any trend, there was a backlash. Child custody became a highly political gender-specific issue. Thus, the ramping up of high-level disputes also began in the 70’s.

In most states the tender years presumption (mother knows best) was replaced with the best-interests-of-the-child presumption of joint custody (the best parent is both parents). In the 1980’s, courts began to increasingly ignore gender in determining child custody. This removed the automatic allocation of full custody rights to the mother, so she had less time with the children. Instead, the courts looked first at how the custody could be shared, and if that wasn’t possible, judicial officers attempted to determine which parent was more interested and better able to attend to the best interest of the child. Fathers perceived that they were at a disadvantage because of a bias toward the mother having custody. Because of this, in the 1980’s more fathers than ever started showing up at parenting classes to make sure that their skills were state of the art. This is when these issues were first called to my attention.

Most parents were able to share custody of their children, and they worked out childcare issues in an amicable way. A large number of women were even relieved to have fathers share in the childcare, which enabled them to pursue their personal life goals involving their education and career. However, when there was not a friendly resolution to custody, fathers found themselves with a greater opportunity to gain joint or primary custodial status by litigating (going to court). The stakes got even higher when the legal system was used to resolve these difficult problems. In extreme cases, the alienation of a child’s affection against a targeted parent became a bizarre escalation of the intensity of the conflict.

Who discovered Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS)?

In association with this growing child-custody litigation, forensic psychiatrist Dr. Richard A. Gardner first identified Parental Alienation Syndrome in the 1980’s. He noticed a dramatic increase in the frequency of a disorder rarely observed before, that of programming or brainwashing of a child by one parent to denigrate the other parent.

However, the disorder wasn’t just brainwashing or programming by a parent. It was confounded by what Dr. Gardner calls self-created contributions by the child in support of the alienating parent’s campaign of denigration against the targeted parent. He called this disorder Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS), a new term that includes the contribution to the problem made by both the parent and the child.

What is 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.

What is the child’s part in PAS?

Gardner notes that the PAS is more than brainwashing or programming, because the child has to actually participate in the denigrating of the alienated parent. This is done in primarily the following eight ways:

The child denigrates the alienated parent with foul language and severe oppositional behavior.
The child offers weak, absurd, or frivolous reasons for his or her anger.
The child is sure of himself or herself and doesn’t demonstrate ambivalence, i.e. love and hate for the alienated parent, only hate.
The child exhorts that he or she alone came up with ideas of denigration. The “independent-thinker” phenomenon is where the child asserts that no one told him to do this.
The child supports and feels a need to protect the alienating parent.
The child does not demonstrate guilt over cruelty towards the alienated parent.
The child uses borrowed scenarios, or vividly describes situations that he or she could not have experienced.
Animosity is spread to the friends and/or extended family of the alienated parent.

In severe cases of parent alienation, the child is utterly brain- washed against the alienated parent. The alienator can truthfully say that the child doesn’t want to spend any time with this parent, even though he or she has told him that he has to, it is a court order, etc. The alienator typically responds, “There isn’t anything that I can do about it. I’m not telling him that he can’t see you.”

PAS is an escalation of Parental Alienation (PA)

Dr. Douglas Darnall in his book Divorce Casualties: Protecting Your Children from Parental Alienation, describes three categories of PA: The mild category he calls the naïve alienators. They are ignorant of what they are doing and are willing to be educated and change.

The moderate category is the active alienators. When they are triggered, they lose control of appropriate boundaries. They go ballistic. When they calm down, they don’t want to admit that they were out of control.

In the severe category are the obsessed alienators or those who are involved in PAS. They operate from a delusional system where every cell of their body is committed to destroying the other parent’s relationship with the child. In the latter case, he notes that we don’t have an effective protocol for treating an obsessed alienator other than removing the child from their influence. An important point is that in PAS there is no true parental abuse and/or neglect on the part of the alienated parent. If this were the case, the child’s animosity would be justified. Also, it is not PAS if the child still has a positive relationship with the parent, even though one parent is attempting to alienate the child from him or her.

Which gender is most likely to initiate PAS?

Gardner’s statistics showed that the majority of PAS occurrences were initiated by mothers. Mothers have traditionally had primary custody of children (although before the 20th century it normally belonged to the father), and the mothers usually spend more time with the children.

In order for a campaign of alienation to occur, one parent needs to have considerable time with the child. However, in recent years increasing numbers of fathers have started instigating PAS, since there are few legal sanctions for doing so.

I’ve seen several dramatic cases where the father was the alienator. In one case, the father had no control over his obsession to trash the mother. Numerous professionals told him, including the mother, that he could have shared custody if he would be willing to follow the rules. He didn’t have the self-control to do this. When he lost custody because of his aberrant behavior, he became a celebrity in the father’s rights movement and took his campaign into national circles. No one would know from hearing him speak about his situation that there was serious pathology going on (PAS) or how hard the professionals worked to stabilize it. Moreover, in cultures where women traditionally have no tangible rights, alienation by the father can be severe.

I’ve met divorcing women who had been prevented from learning how to make a living to support themselves. At the time of separation all access to financial resources were stopped and the children removed from her care. These women reported severe alienation of affection.

It makes one grateful to have laws that protect human rights and enforce a better way of resolving conflict than a winner-take all approach.

How common is PA and PAS?

When parents first separate there is often parent alienation. For example, due to the anxiety of the mother, she is likely to say indirectly to a child that he or she is not safe with the father.

She might say:

“Call me as soon as you get there to let me know you are okay.”
“If you get scared, you call me right away. Okay?”
“I’ll come get you if you want to come home.”

Usually this level of alienation dies down after the separating parents get used to changes brought on by the separation and move on with their lives. However, in rare cases, the anxiety not only doesn’t calm down, it escalates. PAS parents are psychologically fragile. When things are going their way, they can hold themselves together. When they are threatened however, they can become fiercely entrenched in preserving what they see is rightfully theirs. Fortunately only a small percentage end up in this level of conflict.

Why do PAS parents act like they do?

I believe that PAS parents have become stuck in the first stage of child development, where survival skills are learned. To them, having total control over their child is a life and death matter. Because they don’t understand how to please other people, any effort to do so always has strings attached. They don’t give; they only know how to take.

They don’t play by the rules and are not likely to obey a court order. Descriptions that are commonly used to describe severe cases of PAS are that the alienating parent is unable to “individuate” (a psychological term used when the person is unable to see the child as a separate human being from him or herself). They are often described as being “overly involved with the child” or “enmeshed”. The parent may be diagnosed as narcissistic (self-centered), where they presume that they have a special entitlement to whatever they want. They think that there are rules in life, but only for other people, not for them.

Also, they may be called a sociopath, which means a person who has no moral conscience. These are people who are unable to have empathy or compassion for others. They are unable to see a situation from another person’s point of view, especially their child’s point of view. They don’t distinguish between telling the truth and lying in the way that others do.

In spite of admonitions from judges and mental health professionals to stop their alienation, they can’t. The prognosis for severely alienating parents is very poor. It is unlikely that they are able to “get it.” It is also unlikely that they will ever stop trying to perpetuate the alienation. This is a gut wrenching survival issue to them.

How does the child get involved in PAS?

The targeted parent needs to understand what has happened to what as once an affectionate and loving child who is now unexplainably hostile. Remember Gardner’s definition stated earlier, “the disorder wasn’t only brainwashing or programming by a parent, but was confounded by what he calls self-created contributions by the child in support of the alienating parent’s campaign of denigration against the targeted parent.” It isn’t PAS in the severe form of this disorder, unless the child has crossed over and joined up with the alienating parent. The child shares the alienating parent’s psychosis. How does this happen? At birth, children are totally reliant on a parent, usually the mother, for having all of their needs met. It is part of normal child development to be enmeshed with their primary caregiver, and very young children do not have a separate identity from this caregiver.

One of the mother’s roles is to help the child develop as a separate person, therefore, infancy and childhood become a series of tasks of learning how to become independent. For example, learning to putting oneself back to sleep, eating, toilet training and caring for one’s hygiene. Instead of promoting this independence, the alienating parent encourages continued dependence. The parent may insist on sleeping with the child, feeding the child (“It’s easier if I do it”), and taking care of these rites of passage longer than normal child development calls for. This “spoiling” may not feel right to the child, but they do not have enough ego strength to do anything about it.

A PAS mother can’t imagine that the father is capable of planning the child’s time while in his care. Therefore, she arranges several things for the child to do while at the father’s house. One of the most common ways of doing this is to sign the child up for on-going lessons without permission from the father. The parent may even decree whom the child can and cannot see, particularly specific members of the child’s extended family on the father’s side. The mother desperately wants control over the time when the child isn’t with her.

One of the most unusual situations that I ran into was the father who picked up his sons at 9:00 a.m. on a Saturday for the weekend. He discovered that his very excited boys had their hearts set on going to Disneyland for the day, when this idea had never crossed his mind. One theory about why a mother will act this way is that when a father takes his share of joint custody, it is like asking her to give away part of her body.

One mother said, “He is going to remove my right arm and take it for the weekend.” It feels like the mother has lost a profound part of who she is as a person. She feels fractured, pulled apart.

Why is PAS a double bind for the child?
When children spend time with the father, and enjoy it, they are put into a double bind. Clearly, they cannot tell the mother that dad treats them well or that they had fun together. They want to bond with the father, but don’t dare. They figure out on which side the bread is buttered (who has the power), and their survival needs tug at them. Therefore, children will tell the mother about everything they didn’t enjoy about time spent with the father, which will add to her belief that they don’t like to be with him. These children feel that they must protect the mother. The same is true when the alienator is the father. The child will avoid expressing their affectionate feelings for the mother to him.

Family volatility

These are volatile families. The father may have indeed spanked a child, or lashed out at the mother physically or emotionally. An isolated incidence can turn into a holocaust. One father spanked his rebellious child and ended up in jail on child abuse charges, followed by a six week trial to determine his guilt. The jury returned with a not guilty verdict in 20 minutes. The verdict didn’t end it as far as the mother was concerned, however.

The alienating parent’s hatred can have no bounds. The severest form will bring out every horrible allegation known, including claims of domestic violence, stalking and the sexual molestation of the child. Many fathers say that there have been repeated calls to the Department of Family and Child Services alleging child abuse and neglect.

In most cases the investigators report that they found nothing wrong. However, the indoctrinating parent feels that these reports are not fabrications, but very, very real. She can describe the horror of what happen in great detail. Regardless of the actual truth, in her mind, it did happen.

Most of the alienated fathers that I work with are continually befuddled by her lying. “How can she lie like that?” They don’t realize that these lies are not based on rational thinking. They are incapable of understanding the difference between what is true and what they want to be true. A vital part of fighting PAS is to understand the severity of the psychological disturbance that is the source of it.

Intergenerational patterns
What makes this problem very complicated is that PAS is often intergenerational in dysfunctional families. Almost always the alienator has people within the family who support the alienation. It might be the mother, father or grandparent who encourage fighting. They are likely to support the parent financially or even provide massive amounts of money to fund litigation. This is further proof to the PAS parent that he or she is justified in what he/she does.

When a child is placed in the role of the parent’s therapist

Alienation advances even further when the alienating parent uses the child as a personal therapist. The child is told about every miserable experience and negative feeling about the alienated parent with great specificity. The child, who is already enmeshed with the parent because his or her own identity is still undefined, easily absorbs the parent’s negativity. They become aligned with this parent and feel that they need to be the protector of the alienating parent.

What happens to the child when you can’t stop PAS?

Obviously, without anyone to stop the alienation from progressing, the child will become estranged from the alienated parent. The relationship with this parent will eventually be severed. It is doubtful that, without psychological intervention as the child grows, he or she will ever understand what happened. The child’s primary role model will be the maladaptive, dysfunctional parent. He or she will not have the benefit of growing up with the most well-adjusted parent and all that this parent can contribute to enrich the child’s life. Many of these children come to experience serious psychiatric problems. Will they ever grow up and realize what happened to them? Without someone who can recognize the syndrome and counsel them about it, it isn’t likely that they will ever figure it out. However, there have been exceptions where the child and the alienated parent have been successfully reunified later in life.

How can good intentions backfire?

Those people who are typically called upon to handle such difficult situations, such as the police, social workers, attorneys or psychologists assume that what the frightened mother is saying is true. These things DO happen. There are men who are seriously disturbed, violent, out of control sexually, and stalk, who are rightfully feared. The mother is very convincing in her desperation and vivid in her descriptions. The clincher is that the alienated child collaborates with the mother by saying, “Yes, I am afraid of my father.” “Yes, my father did touch me down there.” “Yes, he does beat me.” What would you do if you were faced with having to decide how to protect a child in such a situation?


Some therapists don’t realize the severity and depth of the problem. In fact, they may unwittingly side with the alienating parent and even testify in court that the child is afraid of the alienated parent. This can be a serious stumbling block in getting an accurate diagnosis. Indeed, it can tip the scale into the alienating parent’s agenda and do real damage.

Our courts, social services and mental health workers are all committed to stop child abuse and neglect when they see it occurring. Unfortunately, in PAS situations a dramatic and loud complaint from the alienating parent often ends up being acted upon without an investigation as to the accuracy of the allegation. This frequently removes the alienated parent from the children and allows the alienating parent considerable additional time to proceed with the alienation.

By the time all of the evaluations are in place and the case is heard by the court, considerable damage has been done to the child. It is an irony that the very people we turn to for help in such a difficult situation can often be those who most contribute to allowing the on-going abuse and neglect of the child to continue.

What can be done about the problem?

First, it takes a sophisticated mental health professional to be able to identify that PAS is occurring. Most forensic evaluators such as psychiatrists and clinical psychologists have studied the disorder and are able to recognize it.

Forensic evaluators diagnose PAS by having the parents take a battery of psychological tests, doing a detailed case history and by observation. They make recommendations as to what to do. After the evaluator has written a report on the family and made recommendations, nothing will happen to resolve the crisis without court intervention.

The alienated parent has to take the report to a judge who must then be convinced that the child is being alienated and that it is not in their best interest to stay in such an environment. It is rare however that judges have any degree of mental health training. They most often learn about PAS from the bench. It usually takes several trips to court to point out how badly a child is being treated before a judge is willing to act.

How are PAS cases resolved legally?

Judges are inevitably conservative in their orders. Even when the evidence is overwhelming that the alienation is occurring, the court order may still end up saying, “the parents are to make joint decisions about the child’s welfare,” when this is impossible to do. This is further evidence that the judge doesn’t understand the magnitude of the problem. The judge in one of the most severe PAS cases I worked on was from the old school. He was tired of having the litigants continue to appear before him. One day he said, “Why don’t the two of you go out in the hallway and kiss and make up.” This is an example of how frustrating these cases are for judges. Indeed, these are the hardest cases to decide.

Judges have been slow to place serious sanctions on the alienating parent. If there is no threat of severe fines, jail time or sole custody to the targeted parent, the chances are remote that the out-of-control parent can be stopped. It usually takes a dramatic situation where court orders are broken to force the court to change primary custody. Often it is only a matter of time before alienating parents become desperate and their unstable mental health gets the better of them. People in an official position start to recognize the alienating parent as being out of line, and become supportive of the targeted parent.

In one case, the 9 and 4 year old daughters were abducted and presumed to be on their way to Australia through an underground group that hides women who are victims of domestic violence, often of a sexual nature and where the father is stalking. The girls were missing for 3 months and found in another county where they were waiting for final arrangements to be made before their departure. When the police broke into the house at 3:00 a.m., they found the girls sleeping with their mother. They had been given boy’s names, clothes, haircuts and their hair was dyed. They were not allowed contact with anyone outside of their hiding place, not even to go to school. The oldest child had strep throat and the youngest was seriously withdrawn.

In another case, the mother could no longer convince the social workers, the police or the Court about her allegations. She was known to be unstable because she had “cried wolf” too many times. She abducted her daughter to Utah. She told officials there that the courts where she lived were protecting a proven child molester. The press was called. After she was interviewed; there was a virtual feeding frenzy as the father’s photograph and the story was on all the local news networks. A big part of the problem was that the seven year old girl, said “Yes” when asked if her father had molested her. Even though this had already been disproved by forensic evaluators, she was still confused.

Can the alienation of children be reversed?

As children get older, the alienation can be reversed with proper psychological care. However, it won’t work if the alienating parent is not contained. In the last case described above, the mother had severely limited visiting rights. She had remarried and had a new child, however, she still regularly calls the police to report the father for abuse. Presently, the daughter resides with her father, receives weekly therapy and hates the police. She gradually understands how disturbed her mother is.

In the former case, where the mother was kidnapping the children, she now sees them two hours a month at the Department of Children’s Services with a social worker present to monitor everything that she says and does. The girls have also been in extensive therapy and are doing well.

Since this is among the most severe kinds of abuse of a child’s emotions, there will be scars and lost opportunities for normal development. The child is at risk of growing up and being an alienator also, since the alienating parent has been the primary role model.

What is the best way to deal with PAS?

The parents I know who were successful in getting primary custody of their children in a PAS situation shared the following characteristics:

They completed a comprehensive parenting course such as Breakthrough Parenting, and stuck with it until they rated excellent in the knowledge, skills and methods taught. Their parenting skills became superior.

They were even-tempered, logical and kept their emotions under control. They never retaliated. A person who reacts in anger is proving the alienator’s point that he or she is unstable.

They certainly thought of giving up but never did. No matter how awful the harassment got, they worried about leaving their daughter or son in that environment. They were driven to continue trying to get the court to understand the seriousness of the issues and to change primary custody to them.

They were willing and able to go to the financial expense of seeing it through.

They got help from a skilled family lawyer who had experience with parent alienation syndrome.

They became good at understanding how the courts work and the law as it applied to their case. In many cases, because of excessive expenses, parents even ended up as pro per (called pro se in some states) where they were representing themselves without a lawyer.

They had a case where a forensic evaluator made a strong statement about the alienation and recommend changing legal and primary custody to the alienated parent. Some parents had to go back to the evaluator to demonstrate that his or her earlier recommendations were not working.

They persevered in demonstrating that they were rational, reasonable, and had the best interest of the child at heart.

They provided the court with an appropriate parenting plan that showed how the child would be well taken care of in their care.

They understood the nature of the problem and focused on what to do about it, even though they and their children were being victimized. (Alienated parents who got caught up in “how terrible it all is” and spent time judging the situation, went under emotionally.)

They didn’t live a victim’s life.

They were proactive in seeking constructive action.

They avoided adding to the problem. One father expressed it like this: “I don’t know how to make it better with the mother, but I do know how to make it worse.” He was one of the most successful parents I met in fighting the PAS problem because he stayed in the role of the peacekeeper.

They kept a diary or journal of key events, describing what happened and when.

They documented the alienation with evidence that was admissible in court.

They always called or showed up to pick up their children, even if they knew that the children won’t be there. This was often very painful, but then they could document that they tried, when the alienator alleged that this parent had no interest in the child.

They focused on enjoying their children’s company and never talked to their children about their case. They always took the high road and never talked badly about the other parent to their children. They absolutely never showed a child any court orders or other sensitive documents. They didn’t let the children overhear inappropriate conversations on the telephone.

They didn’t violate court orders. They paid their child support on time and proved that they could live within the letter of the law.

They were truly decent, principled people. It was obvious that they loved their children.

PAS cases are notoriously difficult to figure out, even for professionals in the field of divorce. Once the syndrome is discovered, it is even harder for the professionals to figure out what to do about it. It is important for alienated parents to be supported by compassionate people while going through this difficult time. PAS is never easy, but there is plenty of hope for those who take the high road and follow what worked for other PAS parents as shown above.

Jayne Major, Ph.D.


  1. I wonder how common this is? Reading the article sent a chill down my spin as many of the examples I experience with my ex-wife. I have tried to move to a joint custody position but she has resisted my atempts to have more time with my kids. Always controlling around what I do with them. Constant critcism and dramtisation of the most trivial events. I have resisted court as I havent wanted to drag the kids into it. After reading this I doubt court can be avoided.

    Comment by David — Mon 26th March 2012 @ 10:24 pm

  2. See also:

    Maybe these postings present the blacker side, these are more the worst cases than the norm. Even so, they are warnings well worth heeding.

    To keep in pespective, speak with people experiemced with helping men through these “parenting challenges”, Pete, Ken, Allan Harvey, Jim Bagnall, myself.

    Best regards, MurrayBacon.

    Comment by MurrayBacon — Tue 27th March 2012 @ 5:17 am

  3. It is very common regrettably David in our experience. The desire for one party to a failed relationship to inflict hurt and damage on the other by alienating their children against them is common. So common in fact that some Family Court judges (we know of at least two, the Principal Family Court Judge Peter Boshier, and Judge David Burns of Auckland) who in decisions felt the only way to address such extreme alienating behaviour was to remove the children from the alienating parent and place them with the other parent or given wardship to the Court. This is by no means a fixed rule however, each judge will look at the case on its merits. But we do see a ‘trend’ whereby some Family Court judges seem from time-to-time go down a particular line of common decision making. It is too early to say if this is the case with alienation in our opinion. Overseas courts have taken a much firmer line. Brian for GMen 🙂

    Comment by Brian — Tue 27th March 2012 @ 7:13 am

  4. PAS hurts bigtime, ask this 10 year vet.However it was worth the fight as both my daughters love me to bits nowadays.
    Bad luck family court you did not destroy the bonds of love between a good dad and his confused daughters.

    Comment by dad4justice — Tue 27th March 2012 @ 6:20 pm

  5. Brian, I agree that people who would deliberately alienate children against the other parent are “common” as muck. Alas, although they are a minority, they make up about 20% or all relationship breakdowns. (Not 20% of all mothers, as “good” mothers don’t so often break up marriages.)

    Maybe it isn’t surprising that these fractured people take out their frustrations, by malicious, destructive behaviour.

    The man must not denigrate the mother!

    Oh, this trite commandment issues forth from the mouths of idiots, the C4cs of this world.

    A standard commandment, based not on the facts of the situation, but just as a thoughtless meaningless rigid rote instruction.

    OK, so lets turn it inside out?

    Why should the “man” not criticise the mother?

    It is very convenient if the mother can be beyond criticism, but is this valuable?
    Accountability comes from each of us being regularly asked questions about our performance and to justify the actions that we carried out?

    Should mothers be beyond accountability?

    If we look at statistics on child neglect or injury, or homicide, we see that the single largest danger or hazard to children in general, is their own mother!!!!
    Child Homicide in NZ by Elizabeth Moore Masters thesis Victoria University – available by interloan – 2010 USA study

    Thus, obviously mothers should not be above accountability. If the mother is behaving in a psychiatricly disturbed manner, then call a spade a spade and name it for what it is. Stand by, for criticism for your own contribution.

    So, where did the idea of mothers being beyond accountability come from?

    It seems that “legal-workers” are trying to press this idea onto men. Why? Incidentally, are these legal-workers themselves accountable? (Are they knowledgeable in a useful way, about child protection?)

    There is an office of Judicial Complaints Commissioner. He is paid $200,000 per year, not to do anything useful, but to figurehead an office, that isn’t funded to actually do anything useful like investigations at all! This officer is a placeholder, to deceive the public that “judges” might be accountable for their actions, but not to actually bring accountability into play! On a value for money basis, he delivers misinformation and costs a lot of money. In my opinion, anyone who would accept employment on such a basis, is morally corrupt and essentially just a thief, a conman and a liar. But where there is life, there is hope. This office could be funded to work, the legislation is there and an instantaneous infusion of funds could bring out all sorts of good and deficient behaviour by our “judges”.

    Anyway, leaving aside the liars, thieves, misleaders and conmen of this world, the statistics show us that some women do need to be questioned, about the quality of how they care for their own children. While we are in a mood to criticise and challenge, quite a few men also need to be challenged about the quality of the care that they give their children too…..

    So, if you are faced with this instruction to “do not denigrate the mother”, I suggest that rather than listen to the conmen (and conwomen) of this world, think through how effective and protective is the mother who we are discussing.

    If she enjoys taking care of the children, then probably she is good (for the children) at it. But if she seems to find it hard work, or if she tries to get others to actually do the work of caring for the children, or disciplining them, then her degree of competence and skill probably do need to be looked at far more closely.

    If you were to listen to the “do not denigrate the mother”, then you would be failing to do your duty as a parent, to check on the care that yourself and your wife are providing for your children.

    Think of 10 people that you know fairly closely. If one of them isn’t an obvious alcoholic, then it is probably you!

    So, as well as evaluating your wife’s parenting skills, think about yourself. If you don’t enjoy your children’s time, then maybe you ARE a weak parent?

    I am not out to seek to criticise women, more to get both fathers and mothers to consider how effective they are at caring for and developing our children? For these evaluations to protect children, they must be made by the same measure, irrespective of father or mother.

    Anyway, this is a ridiculous question. The incompetents of this world all swear that they are competent, just ask any “judge”?!!!!!! If maybe we were not effective and empathic in our care of our children, how would we know?

    On Fair Go, they deride an unfortunate concrete layer tradesman, who has strayed outside of his area of competence and, as so easily happens, it has all turned to crap. He is ridiculed on national TV.

    But what of the legal-worker, who has accepted legal-worker’s-aid, to defend a poor parent couple, who are under attack for partially suffocating their child. There is a medical affidavit, written by a specialist paediatrician, well known and respected. He has written a long, 19 page tedious affidavit, sewing up these parents. This is all paid for by ADHB and carried out under their supervision, at taxpayer’s cost.

    If this legal-worker gets a medical second opinion, then the cost is deducted from the maximum fee payable under legal-worker’s-aid. In other words, he gets less money. (The CYFs lawyer could also have had a cautionary doubt and requested a second opinion. But he didn’t either.)

    Well, in the particular example I am talking about, the legal worker doesn’t get a medical second opinion. He has succumbed to the conflict of interest and taken care of his personal best interest, not his clients.

    Does this matter? Maybe not, the parents don’t have a good reputation and if this doesn’t get them, then surely something else will.

    But, hang on a minute, the paediatrician is a treatment specialist, not a forensic paediatrician. He was working outside of his area of training and expertise. Just like the concrete layer tradesman I spoke of earlier, it is quite possible what he wrote is incompetent and wrong. If it was wrong, he likely will not know it himself, as he isn’t knowledgeable in forensics. Just another “professional at something else”.
    search for Dr. Moira Woods, she was a creative paediatrician, if not successful in the simpler art of forensics.

    Would you prefer to cross paths with this incompetent concrete layer, or an incompetent forensic paediatrician who only took paediatric treatment provider examinations?

    Has Fair Go investigated this tradesman paediatrician? No. Is this paediatrician safe from ever having to face accountability for his actions? Unfortunately, he is pretty safe.

    If we leave aside the question of how good these two parents were, if the affidavit was in error, then it is highly likely that many other similar affidavits written by the same paediatrician will also have been seriously in error. If this is correct, then almost certainly, many other parents have had their children wrongly removed, as a result of counter-factual medical affidavits.

    Search for how long it took to get courts to acknowledge the errors of Dr. Moira Woods and to correct these errors?

    What did the courts do, to correct the fathers who had chosen to commit suicide, rather than to face unfounded accusations of sexually molesting their own children?

    If you were faced by such an allegation, would you have confidence in the performance of our caught$?

    So, what value has been delivered by these legal-workers?

    Reading the judgement about the hapless parents, it wasn’t at all clear that the “judge” had bothered to read the medical affidavit. Nothing in the affidavit, for or against, was mentioned by the “judge”, that wasn’t in the social worker’s brief affidavit.


    Well, reading it all again, the legal-worker’s submissions also didn’t contain anything that wasn’t mentioned in the social worker’s affidavit. This is starting to get a bit scary…. quite a bit….

    Now, the medical affidavit tried to prove a medical proposition by exclusion. According to the paediatrician, there were and are only 8 possible scenarios, that could have lead to the listed symptoms. These were systematically eliminated, by a few medical tests, which were listed.

    I am not a paediatrician, I am not a medical doctor. I am an engineer, a rather more boring profession, but one who seem to have a substantial opportunity, if they err, to kill people dead. What is worse, we tend to kill innocent, healthy people, not just people who were about to die anyway. You get much less sympathy when you kill healthy people, than when a doctor kills someone only a stone’s throw and a syringe away from death anyway.

    Accountability seems to be coming back into discussion. After it has all turned to custard, the doctor often can hide in among the confusion, there wasn’t enough information to make the diagnosis, it could have been lots of other things. After an engineer has killed, it all seems so obvious, that the noose can only be lowered onto his neck.

    Anyway, I digress. Back to our smiling paediatrician, our treatment provider, doing forensic work in the pay of the ADHB, a “professional at something else”. What are the chances of his work being challenged in public? Practically zero, as the only person who read his report, was the social worker, who knew what she wanted and put just that in her affidavit.

    But, sometimes the unthinkable happens. This unfortunate couple showed their paperwork to a frustrated father, who was prepared to spend the time to wade through the paperwork. On finding the medical affidavit, my eyes fairly near popped out of my head. A medical proof by exclusion, what a miraculous development. Medical science now knows everything and nothing new will ever, or can ever be found!!!?????

    If I quote from Angela Cannings successful appeal judgement (she was accused of deliberately suffocating her children):

    34. There is a more compelling candidate for inclusion. Unbeknown to her at trial, Mrs Cannings has a half-sister, who following these convictions, made herself known to her solicitors. For quite understandable reasons, she wishes not to be identified by name. We shall respect her wishes and refer to her as JM. Stephen Connolly is the father of both these women. They share a quarter of their genes. JM has three children, two of whom suffered what appear from her description to have been possible ALTEs. The first has been excluded from consideration by Professor Patton, following a close examination of the medical records. JM also has identical twin daughters. In March 1997, when four weeks old, one of them, AM, was admitted to hospital following what was described at the time as an “apnoeic episode”. This was a true life threatening event, and AM required resuscitation. At the time when it occurred, it is common ground between Professor Patton and Dr Ward Platt that the incident was rightly treated as an ALTE. Professor Patton continues to think that it was. Dr Ward Platt refers to AM’s subsequent admission to hospital in May 1997 for what appeared to be a seizure, or febrile convulsions. He suggests that this provides a very plausible explanation for the earlier incident. Although we understand the argument, we are unconvinced that the diagnosis for the second incident necessarily provides the correct diagnosis for the first. In any event, in our current state of knowledge, it would be unwise not to recognise the distinct possibility that, in addition to the McDermott family, Mrs Cannings’ niece, therefore the cousin of her children, who had never met, let alone lived with her, suffered an ALTE when she was 4 weeks old. This is important fresh evidence. Taken on its own, it strengthens the view expressed by Professor Patton at trial that this is indeed an unusual family tree, and that the incidence of infant death and ALTEs in this particular family are unlikely to be explained by chance alone. There may well be a genetic cause, as yet unidentified, for the deaths of the Cannings children, manifesting itself in some, but not all of the extended family, through autosomal dominant inheritance with variable penetrance. That would mean that the child in question needed only to inherit the gene from one parent to be liable to develop whatever the genetic mechanism may be.
    35. We cannot avoid recording that we have been left with the strong impression that some of the mystery surrounding SIDS is likely to be dissipated when our knowledge of the impact of genes and genetics is greater than it is now. By way of example, Professor Golding described human genetics as a very complicated story, with much research yet to be done. Speaking broadly, she observed:
    “Genetics at the moment is such that there are new discoveries all the time. Things that we have no idea about are being revealed every day … There is a lot of work to be done, and once we have looked at 30,000 genes we should have a clearer idea of what we should be looking at.”
    In any event, for the purposes of this appeal, we are quite unable to reject the realistic possibility that in the absence of some compelling piece of evidence, whether specialist or extraneous, suggestive of the deliberate infliction of harm, there may have been a genetic cause, as yet unidentified, for the deaths and ALTEs experienced by the Cannings children.
    So, Angela Canning’s appeal court judges. LORD JUSTICE JUDGE, MRS JUSTICE RAFFERTY and MR JUSTICE PITCHERS all accepted that medical knowledge is not yet complete!!!

    So, a local GP also found the Auckland paediatrician’s medical affidavit untenable, but as he remarked, “I am a GP and in a court, I cannot challenge a paediatrician’s affidavit, with any hope of success”.

    So, what value did the legal worker’s add?

    I cannot see that they added any value at all. They were all consistently lazy and greedy as a thief. This is a common finding in monopolistic environments, that is easily cured by letting in the light of accountability and the light of competition to gain employment.

    A state of Injustice – 2004
    The Case of Henry Keogh by RobertNMoles Australia
    Angela Cannings

    You see, only an idiot would pay these sorts of people, whether their work is successful, or whether it is rubbish. So, who is the idiot?

    But, back to the question, how can we tell if we are being successful as a parent?

    If we are not competent, chances are we not be aware, until it is far far too late. No-one should ever be allowed to find that out the hard way, as the cost to their children is too great.

    What needs to be done? If you need a license to drive, then something as critical as parenting of young children surely requires the same treatment and this can now be done…..

    A gentleman would not criticise the mother openly. He would first make a full and correct judgement, then quietly step in and take care of the children himself, if this is what the situation demanded. The problem is that too many men are not prepared to step up to the challenge of taking care of their own children. The gentleman might in all humility, remember that a thrown axe or hand grenade might be thrown back!

    If this has caused any pain, take an awful lot of clonazepam….

    Best regards,
    Murray Bacon.

    Comment by MurrayBacon — Tue 27th March 2012 @ 9:32 pm

  6. It is really nice that there is finally some acknowledgment of Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) and naturally you would expect that to be followed by the apologist bullshit. PAS is not a post separation conflict. It is a parental conflict that starts within any variety of reproductive relationships. In extreme cases it will have begun in the womb or even prior to conception. Post separation PAS presents a different set of circumstances to pre separation and involves different and evolving groups of participants.


    Is a significant contributing factor to many separations – it can lead to hostility prior to separation and significantly increase post separation.

    Post separation it can exist regardless of whether there is a direct parental conflict or one parent is absent – usually the father.

    The offending party is not necessarily a parent. Regardless of the mother and father relationship, grandparents and siblings can instigate their own attacks.

    The effects of grief are seriously under estimated. I would draw a parallel here with receiving the news that one of your parents is terminally ill and death is inevitable. The grieving process in this case starts immediately. It would be absurd to suggest otherwise. What is NOT generally accepted is that the alienated parent and the child or children suffer various degrees of grief and at some point death of that familial relationship. Look at the response you see in relationships where alienation has not existed. People still talk about their Mum and Dad. Death has not destroyed the relationship. We mourn the death but grieve the loss – the loss of that relationship that existed with us.

    Taking this into account fathers and children suffer prolonged periods of grief. New Zealand is an extreme example of the spectrum and father alienation – it is a State of Grief. The stoic position of men makes this easy to dismiss, and easy to manipulate. “The mother felt like her arm was being ripped off, a part of her was being taken away”; let’s get all sympathetic for the victim. If men are sex offenders who need to kept away from children then women are gender offenders who should be regarded equally as hostile and a danger to society.

    Taking into the account the deluded backspace g backspace n backspace i backspace k backspace c backspace u backspace f, idiots, that shouldn’t be in charge of their own lives let alone a court and other people’s lives, the issue is ignored, tolerated, assisted, progressed, and cemented in concrete for the offending party and men are expected to take the concrete pill and harden up while they watch their children being slowly terminated.

    Is PAS reversible. We are now brining people back from the dead – Yeah right. Of course it is stoppable, but that is not what we see. The damage is there in various amounts and in various effects, but in extreme cases, grief is replaced by acceptance and even if some relationships and re-established they will always live with what they have lost.
    Understanding PAS from a men’s point of view is vastly different to the feminist perspective being parroted above. Be careful what you buy into, this feminist bullshit won’t serve the lost generation of boys who will be encouraged to accept this perspective as normal rather than seeing PAS for what it is – a women’s disease that is becoming more prevalent in our liberated society.

    Comment by Down Under — Wed 28th March 2012 @ 9:21 am

  7. Dear Down Under, I am not sure if I have understood you. I believe that essentially we are in agreement. I have been raving about lack of accountability by “judges” in general, legal-worker’s in general and also lack of accountability by some mothers, for their own behaviour. PAS is among the very worst examples of refusal to be accountable, to the other parent. The requirement for interparental accountability was laid out by Parliament, in the Care of Children Act, yet NZ “judges” almost completely refuse to honour these clauses.

    I am not sure if these “judges” are just incompetent idiots, or whether they don’t enforce accountability, because they can make more money by ignoring it and thus manipulating the parents for their personal maximum profit. ie conflict of interest – it costs them money to protect the children, so they happily sacrifice the child’s interests, to make the most for themselves. In my opinion, it is the latter.

    The high conflict cases that drag on in familycaught$, do so because the alienating parent believes that they are or will gain value from these bizarre behaviours and because they are not being held accountable for their actions. They either don’t understand the consequences of their behaviour to their children and the other parent, or do understand and want these consequences?

    There is a DVD called Victims of Another War, where 3 adults discuss the consequences of their abduction as a child by one of their parents and how they slowly came to realise the manipulation they had been under. This DVD is available from USA, or by asking.

    Adult Children of Parental Alienation Syndrome, Breaking the Ties that Bind by Amy J. L. Baker. W. W. Norton & Company New York “¢ London covers similar territory.

    I suggest that we must expose these NZ “judges” for exactly what they are, incompetent at protecting children from any and all hazard. If we want to protect our children, then we do need people who can successfully perform the job of judge, in a way that respects and protects children, mothers and fathers.

    This will never occur with the existing placeholder “judges”, who lack any useful or practical knowledge of child protection.

    I believe that you are criticising the article above on PAS. She mentions feminists, not sympathetically at all. I am pretty happy with what she says. Please detail your criticism.

    I believe that effective judges would critically evaluate the performance of both parents and hold both to account, to the same standard. This would quickly pullup alienating parents and all forms of child abusers.

    While NZ “judges” are not being held accountable for the quality, or legality of their performances, then there is practically zero hope that they will ever perform effectively, even if we waited another 3 decades!

    To condone the present familycaught$ incompetence, is to actively support child abuse. Other alternatives to using legal-workers as judges are available and would protect children far better and cost far less too.

    Best regards, MurrayBacon – axe-murderer.

    Comment by MurrayBacon — Thu 29th March 2012 @ 10:20 pm

  8. @Murray Bacon.

    I believe that you are criticising the article above on PAS. She mentions feminists, not sympathetically at all. I am pretty happy with what she says. Please detail your criticism.

    You’re suffering from God Misalignment Syndrome. (GMS) Someone asks you if you believe in God and if you answer yes, that does not automatically mean they and you have the same opinion about what God is. In the same vein simply because Dr. Jayne Major offers some criticism of feminism doesn’t make her views on (PAS) correct. That is a very dangerous association to make, and a foolish leap of faith, aligning what you want with what you think she said.

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

    Wrong, as I have already explained. By suggesting this arises primarily in custody disputes and is not a contributing factor to separation or a significant factor in other reproduction planning, it makes this a genderless problem, substantiated by the fact some men do respond in kind.

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

    Wrong, its primary manifestation is a belief in information or misinformation about the other parent intended to destroy that child parent relationship. In the child’s mind ‘the campaign’ is justified.
    It’s not the child’s campaign; it is the mother’s campaign, the child is responding from in the context of a position of grief – totally overlooked.

    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.

    Wrong. To contribute means a willing common purpose. Don’t be brainwashed by feminist whitewash. It is not necessary for a child to vilify the targeted parent to be alienated. I child need only be intimidated into non association. If you take this definition alienation would only occur if

    …a parent indoctrinated a child and they formed a common bond to vilify the other parent post separation.

    As I said before, feminist apologist bullshit. You bought this one lock stock and smoking barrel, firstly because you liked the author’s criticised of some aspects of feminism and secondly because haven’t understood what parental alienation is.

    Comment by Down Under — Fri 30th March 2012 @ 7:50 am

  9. PAS as a Syndrome.

    Put simply some people for a variety of reasons try to draw a distinction between Parental Alienation and Parental Alienation Syndrome. A syndrome requires a definition and a list of symptoms. As you will note above the focus is placed on the child’s behaviour or relationship with the vilified parent, rather than the child’s relationship with the alienating parent. To borrow a phrase from Han’s Laven, what a pussy pass. Imagine if we applied the same charade to domestic violence. [Did he give you and the kids the bash again? Women’s refuge are now offering ‘how to avoid the bash courses’ guaranteed to keep the basher happy, and yes you will have to pay, they don’t come cheap, but of course you’ll note there has been extensive research done on how long it should take you to get from anywhere in the house to the fridge then to lounge with a opened can of beer.]

    PAS Commercial Product.

    Follow the money in the case above and it links directly to the website of an American Family Counsellor. As I have said above note the definition that the website uses to describe PAS. If you don’t fit ‘someone’s’ definition of PAS then what is it you are dealing with? If you do, this creates another counsel for the mother. Lawyer (1st counsel), Counsel for the child (2nd Counsel), Psychologist (third counsel for the mother), personal trainer for the vilified parent (4th counsel for the mother).

    PAS as a Family Court Issue.

    It is not a matter of Judgment or law. It is a rubber stamp jobbie, when all these people finally agree, and the problem most likely hasn’t been dealt with, just evaded, at great expense, not to forget the taxpayer also. In New Zealand there are cases complicated by parental alienation that have continued in the family court for over a decade. They are further complicated by numerous changes of counsel, counsel for the child and psychologist, when it suits the purpose of the alienating parent.

    PAS Suggestions as Unrealistic.

    Anything in America, but in New Zealand in a population of 4.5 million how big would the pool of people be who would realistically have the resources, [time-wise, availability, financially, emotionally, even the capacity and willingness to participate in this captive market] and not throw their hands up in horror and walk away. Those men that do have the resources and pose an image problem for the family court are the only ones likely to have a short sane experience; anyone else is going to have to jump through the hoops and live with the stress and consequences caused by a bunch of self proclaimed experts who are nothing more than apologists for sick or confused women, who are left untreated or tolerated.

    The Shadow of PAS

    What happens if we allow PAS Syndrome to become established as a remedial prescription with a limited definition? Financially it benefits a clique of ‘professionals’ who are unregulated, self promoting, and secretive in family court cases manipulating their own legitimacy for a tax funded income. Worse than that is it legitimises alienating behaviour outside the confined definition that is created for industry purposes, and empowers women to control and destroy father child relationships.

    Comment by Down Under — Sun 1st April 2012 @ 10:17 am

  10. Down Under #8

    Your comment of the following … ‘Worse than that is it legitimizes alienating behaviour outside the confined definition that is created for industry purposes, and empowers women to control and destroy father child relationships.’

    And that is exactly what the hidden agenda of western feminism is all about,read the following two quotes below,all written from prominent and so called ‘respected’ famous feminists…

    Its validates my opinion on what I have posted…

    Two posts from

    Another posting on FEMISA: “Considering the nature and pervasiveness of men’s violence, I would say that without question, children are better off being raised without the presence of men. Assaults on women and children are mostly perpetrated by men whom they are supposed to love and trust: fathers, brothers, uncles, grandfathers, step-fathers.”

    from Daphne Patai’s excellent critical work

    “The nuclear family must be destroyed… Whatever its ultimate meaning, the break-up of families now is an objectively revolutionary process.” — Linda Gordon

    Kind regards to you Down Under..John Dutchie

    Comment by John Dutchie — Sun 1st April 2012 @ 10:40 am

  11. My feelings about men are the result of my experience. I have little sympathy for them. Like a Jew just released from Dachau, I watch the handsome young Nazi soldier fall writhing to the ground with a bullet in his stomach and I look briefly and walk on. I don’t even need to shrug. I simply don’t care. What he was, as a person, I mean, what his shames and yearnings were, simply don’t matter.”
    — Marilyn French; The Woman’s Room.

    As sad as it is to see this sort of stuff being written by women you can’t but chuckle at the irony. It does tell us all we need to know about their doctrine and why the human race shouldn’t tolerate it

    Comment by Down Under — Sun 1st April 2012 @ 12:02 pm

  12. reply to Down Under#11

    I concur with you on your comment ‘As sad as it is to see this sort of stuff being written by women’…However one word I would like to amend is ‘women’ to ‘western’ women’

    I now permanently abode in a wonderful Asian country,totally free from the shackles of the feminist hatred of Manhood and Fatherhood that now is truly embrace western European society..

    Asian women do not embrace,or tolerate that spin doctoring feminist propaganda of Men = Evil…Women = Good

    Yes Down Under,don’t even dare to underestimate Asian women,they know exactly what going in western European society relating to feminism

    Also what I have really noticed,is the amount of decent,generous,level headed and highly intelligent young men living in different Asian countries,marrying Asian women, who still have that wonderful strong femininity ,they are starting families,starting successful business which in turn will help to develop their own economy….

    This comment below is solely directed at the Kiwi feminists,and the staff at the ‘The ministry of women’s affairs’ who I know that visit,and read some of postings place on this website….

    Happy now?..Contented on what you as Feminists on your definition of so called ‘equality’, are successfully achieving your social agenda beyond your wildest dreams… congratulation to you…A job well done

    Well,all what I can say to you Feminists, the so called ‘man drought’ is going get a lot worse for all of you…

    So I take it as Feminists you endorse this policy,written and preach by a famous ,respected and renown Feminist

    “The proportion of men must be reduced to and maintained at approximately 10% of the human race.” — Sally Miller Gearhart, in The Future – If There Is One – Is Female….

    My kindest and warmest regards to you beloved Kiwi Feminists, How I truly love your definition of ‘Equality’

    John Dutchie free at long last from Feminism

    Comment by John Dutchie — Sun 1st April 2012 @ 12:47 pm

  13. A john #12.
    This is off topic but is there evidence of Anorexia and Bulimia in Asian countries?

    Comment by Down Under — Sun 1st April 2012 @ 2:13 pm

  14. A very good question you have asked Down Under …At the moment I am dating an incredible smart,highly intelligent(but with a wonderful common sense approach to life issues) Asian Doctor,and might I add she has experienced living and as worked five years in America/Canada as a doctor…

    One thing this amazing Asian Lady doctor did point out to me, as in her own opinion ,there seems to a lot more mental illness such as you have mention…’Anorexia’… ‘Bulimia’,and ‘Bi-polar disorder’ which is increasing at alarming rate in America and also in western European society

    One of her reasons for what is causing this high right of mental illness issues is the crap western European diet as become, such as in ‘high in sugar’ content and high content of sodium (salt) content…

    Oh just for info, after adapting to Asian diet,which wasn’t hard at all in fact Asian food is amazing….. I have lost 20 kilos in the last 18 months and I feel really great and so invigorated….

    Oh this particular subject,my Lady doctor partner put me on this on ‘u tube’…or if you wish Google the following… ‘Making a Killing’…Its a documentary on the pharmacological companies marketing practices and tactics on there anti-depression drugs…Its an real eye opener….

    Just on my own opinion Asian women on the whole are so very easy to talk too…And I am amazed on how highly intelligent and are so ‘level headed’ ,and done with amazing grace on there part too……

    Kind regards to you, Down Under..John Dutchie

    Comment by John Dutchie — Sun 1st April 2012 @ 2:51 pm

  15. Down Under, I do accept that PAS may start well before separation, as you suggest. I don’t see it as a feminist issue, much. I see it as a jealous reaction of a less skilled parent, seeing the children having an easier and warmer relationship with their father – so they set out to prove their importance, by smashing the children’s relationship with the father. (This was pointed out to me years ago, by Wayne Pruden.)

    I see this as essentially child abuse by a less competent parent. Like any abuse, familycaught$ should be responding to protect the children and all of their relationships. Often the familycaught$’s responses are to aid the PAS, not to protect the children from it.

    Jayne Major’s suggestions how to respond to being the alienated parent seem fairly realistic, for being in a practically intolerable situation.

    I would much prefer that the familycaught$ handled these situations competently, but while this is a rarity, then men must choose from the best available alternatives. This is all that I am trying to say. (While familycaught$ can make more money from mangling these cases, then we can be confident that this is what will keep happening, while this conflict of interest continues in existence. I have made a submission to Justice Department, suggesting that if parties had to pay for the judge, and could exercise customer’s choice, then this problem would be quickly resolved.)

    Best regards and my apologies if I have caused suffering by raising these issues.

    Comment by MurrayBacon — Sun 1st April 2012 @ 6:56 pm

  16. @Murray. Not a feminist Issue. If people – as in the western world – have been feed a diet of feminism, had that regime enforced on them in education, and are restricted to providing information and outcomes that will not be condemned by the sisterhood, how can it not be a feminist issue. You’ve got your blinkers on again. Your willingness to support parental alienation as a syndrome rather than as a behaviour means that a ‘professional’ must identify symptoms occurring in a child, post separation, to confirm the presence of ‘the disorder’. This does not take into account that the prescribed symptoms could (and are) caused by different behaviours. From that you jump to the conclusion that the only outcome is the “Jealous reaction of a less this skilled parent proving their importance by smashing the relationship – Wayne Pruden.” Therefore it is easily solved by a court, we just need to pay the Judge, the problem will be easily solved. The reason that won’t happen is because we didn’t start in the right place and ended up in the wrong place again.

    Protect the children and all their relationships How could you even start to do this if you don’t analyse the behaviour that causes these obstacles. That isn’t being done because PAS (the syndrome) like many other issues buys into the feminist perspective of women’s entitlement.

    Jane Major’s suggestions I am not suggesting that she doesn’t have some good ideas that would or might work in some circumstances. Where the symptoms are relied on rather than an understanding of the behaviour, the effect of applying these remedies can and does aggravate the situation rather than alleviate it and does exactly what you don’t want – it fails to protect relationships.

    Apologies if I have caused suffering by raising these issues you don’t need to apologise to me. Apologise to the guys reading this thinking all they have to do is jump through the family court hoops and voila, problem solved.

    And secondly for re-enforcing women’s entitlement. Take one example where a woman establishes a relationship creating the false belief that it is long term family relationship and bails at 6 months in the first pregnancy. The man was entrapped but in terms of the child the decision to alienate the father was made pre conception. The shadow of no mans law; go there at your own peril. Parental alienation in society becomes a gender crime, father alienation. This is another part of the continuing process of blaming men – absent dad syndrome (ADS) – and excusing women.
    Dysfunctional Law – Dysfunctional Court – Dysfunctional Society.

    Comment by Down Under — Mon 2nd April 2012 @ 9:24 am

  17. Reply Down Under#16

    Bang…!!!..Wow,spot now….You really hit home on your post here Down Under…Just my two cents worth…And a ‘Dysfunctional’ family.

    John Dutchie free at last….

    Comment by John Dutchie — Mon 2nd April 2012 @ 9:34 am

  18. I have been going through this for nearly 5 years!
    At least I know waht to call it now.
    Thanks for this.

    Comment by James Thomas — Thu 7th March 2013 @ 7:17 am

  19. I was pulled up early into reading this, by the statement that many non-custodial fathers would like to continue their role in caring for the child. My children’s non-custodial father had not lifted a finger for them ever before I left, then lied in affidavits that he’d done all the care, even though he had worked long hours and expected me to wait on him. This man then set about turning the children against me. One child seems to have survived it ok. I fear the other is mentally ill, and due to the unrelenting pressure, and persuasions both negative and positive, caved in entirely. This child, now an adult, sees me entirely to blame for leaving, and for everything else. She has modelled her father’s behaviour towards me, after I left, to use all available means to hurt me as much as possible. I mourn the positive and caring relationship we might otherwise have had, but did not have, because a vain, proud man could admit no fault and put the needs of his own ego, and desire to get even, above the needs of his dependent children.

    Comment by Janice Greenlees Forbes — Wed 18th December 2013 @ 12:53 pm

  20. This is exactly what my child and I have experienced at the hands of my vindictive ex-husband:

    The child denigrates the alienated parent with foul language and severe oppositional behavior.
    The child offers weak, absurd, or frivolous reasons for his or her anger.
    The child is sure of himself or herself and doesn’t demonstrate ambivalence, i.e. love and hate for the alienated parent, only hate.
    The child exhorts that he or she alone came up with ideas of denigration. The ‘independent-thinker’ phenomenon is where the child asserts that no one told him to do this.
    The child supports and feels a need to protect the alienating parent.
    The child does not demonstrate guilt over cruelty towards the alienated parent.
    The child uses borrowed scenarios, or vividly describes situations that he or she could not have experienced.
    Animosity is spread to the friends and/or extended family of the alienated parent.

    Comment by Janice Greenlees Forbes — Wed 18th December 2013 @ 12:56 pm

  21. 19 and 20 – Janice – firstly this is NOT a gender issue, it is a PARENT issue – which is being ably assisted by lawyers for the family court in the pursuit of PROFIT – to the detriment of Children and PArents.

    This is a KNOWN concern, to which they refuse to address in any way shape of form. If anything the NZ family court actively facilitates and enflames this known concern – for their financial benefit.

    My parental rights were deliberately destroyed and have NEVER been upheld by the Family court or Child Support Services, and my Child has been Deliberately harmed – the Family court and its officers being parties to this – as they refused to PREVENT this known harm – even in the face of many affidavits and evidence from me – indentifying this direct harm – and every Parental alienation concern detailed in the link below.

    My child has two psychological reports detailing the severe harm this has caused her – and NOTHING has ever been done by the stinking family court or its lawyers to help prevent this. In fact one lawyer for CHILD = stated not my job, im only here to protect PROCESS was his explanation when I asked him to help intervene to PROTECT his client – my daughter – so you can see how corrupted this system has become – they care not about the child at all…….they only care about the MONEY…….

    So why are they refusing to deal with this, why are they refusing to help prevent this – because they they are directly conflicted – business is more important than protecting children.

    Until some good parents take a case against this corruption – men and Women, PARENTS – this will continue unabated as it currently does within the NZ family court – they are dogs who care not about kids or parents…….and currently no one is holding them to account for what they are doing ………not even the system will investigate their own – Human rights commission will not investigate – nor will the Ombudsman – so I guess we have to take the corruption to task privately as with the BANKS publics private prosecution to actually get some JUSTICE in this land.

    As below, my good wife and I have been through every one of the 24 points which define parental alienation – excepting the accusations of sexual abuse – if that had happened I had drawn a line where if such false accusations had been made then I would have reacted – and probably and most likely – violently…….

    Comment by hornet — Wed 18th December 2013 @ 2:43 pm

  22. Hi everyone, this is tragic but I have had to live this way, as I have no choice, I have been married twice, my first marriage failed due to my first wife having an affair while I was at work(nigt shift) cut a long story short this was over 25 years ago now, chrstine now 28 and Kimberley now 26 both were poisoned against me, I haven’t seen them for years but had no choice but the system failed me as a father, the ex wife manipulated brainwashed and used every device availiable to stop me from being a father, $160 k later nothing but heart ache and deep depression, the second marriage twins came along married for 10 yrs suddenly wife leaves me and the twins ashlee and casey, lost my job became a full time parent to them on xmas eve 2000 spent the next 10 yrs raising them the best way I could, then 8 found my love Suzanne, blended familys didn’t work so we waited til the time was right by then the twins were 15 and I asked my uzanne to marry me but my twin daughters said if I marry we will live with mum at this time the mother had very little contact sighting child support issues and anger against me, Suzanne and I have been married now for 5 yrs now and I have had no contact with the twins or chrstine or Kimberley since
    Kimberley has married and had a son and Christine has had a daughter and a son and casey has had a baby and none have acknowledged me or anything so I live with the shame of having 4 daughters that have absolutely nothing to do with me, m not a violent man, no criminal convictions just a dad that got left behind

    Comment by Dave Powell — Sun 22nd February 2015 @ 5:50 pm

  23. I feel for you bro, talk to me anytime.

    [email protected]

    Comment by phil watts — Sun 22nd February 2015 @ 7:47 pm

  24. FEAR real FEAR

    I read some comments and just shivered inside, doom, helplessness loneliness its cold embraced me once again after many many years of suffering.

    3 years in court, multipul court appearances .court orders ignored, warrant for arrest if children werent made avaliable. relocation of children without parent of court consent, helped by social services.Who denied access to childrens where abouts saying Privacy act. Police issued with a warrant order refusing to use, Saying take it back to court.Over $250,000 wasted in the courts. CYP get involved deny court order for visitation stressing needed to build a relationship with children.
    More court appearances denied access.CYP report children now completely hate any idea of contact with father.More court appearances “new Lawyer” CYP suggest Father go to rehab for children. By this time Ive lost mulitpul employment moving to stay near the children,bankrupt,jobless relying on friends for a roof.Yet against the law to approach my kids forced to go through the whole situation to bring a NEW CYP representitive up to current status

    “NO WHERE”unemployed’ depressed.No self confidence, angry. betrayed,no family assistance, alienated. CYP quote ” where would you look after the children anyway, you havent even got a job or home..depression is now my best friend. Mean while social services is chasing me for child support.
    While the Mother is fully supported.rental , electricty,phone,food,clothing,Suddenly a brain fart with CYP..They are seeing a pattern. Court appearance. Judge appoints top child phycologist in New Zealand John Willams. Finally I will see my two girls. Nervous , scared what will they be like.

    First visitation 3 years 4 months. with John Williams after CYP state I must do Rehab for depression..apparently ive got Cant believe i jumped through so many hoops for strangers over a mother malicious behaviour.
    Met the girls.Amazing got down on the floor and interacted. youngest daughter nearly 4 crying Mummy, mummy, very quickly settled down. Because older sister remembers Dad All the love is there open for me to see.Hugs a kiss followed by one from baby sister.
    Partner at the time joined me in tears after visitation After all I was also a good step dad too her children.
    That was the last time i held on to my children. John williams recommended instant access and visitational rights.Mother needs phyciatric accessment
    Court order issued for access. Challenged by Mothers Lawyer……dead in court again for over 6 months waiting for appearence.
    Finally after nearly 5 years Mother is forced to a court appearance. First accusation after 5 yrs in court was i sexually abused the kids. Judge gets very angry at this point. i couldnt believe what I was hearing. Neither could the judge.Threatens Mother with losing the children to the state. Mother recants accusation as over the past 5 years this false accusation was never mentioned in court to CYA or anywhere else.
    After everything happening Ive never felt so abused in all my life with that accusation thrown at me in court by the childrens mother.Even her Lawyers telling her to claim down. After an hours reccess and the Judge talking to my lawyer and I to remain claim
    Finally I recieve visitation rights again. Yet they were still ignored, or when I arrived at the destintation they werent there. Back to court another 6 months where she claimed I never turned up.Once again after the second attempt of visitation they werent there. Despite a court order she had moved 300 miles away with the help of social services again. I mean Im in Wellington shes now in Hamilton. This patterned continued for years I was busted, broken inside and out.Felt Id been totally let down by everyone concerned including family.

    I had to start looking after myself and let it go. I travel to Australia.I find out years later at my Fathers funeral from my older Sisters former Husband.That my enstranged oldest sister my father had disowned through her actions had befriended the Mother and CYP causing so much damage and grief.
    My youngest Sister who recently passed away found out my eldest Daughter had been sexually abused by one of the mothers former partners and placed in foster care.My eldest daughter kept running away looking for me, until the truth of why she was doing this came out
    My youngest Sister informed CYP why wasnt my brother or my mother and her contacted. Apparently they were too abusive and not in the best interest for the children because they werent active in the childrens lives..pft..awesome investigating .”just make up your own mind why dont you.

    22 years later…i have first contact with eldest Daughter . Shes a mother of 4 children. The love she still has towards me is still there. However conversation is very difficult. youngest sister refuses any contact now married with 3 children. Both are still close to their mother.
    They call yet another man Dad, a good man apparently WOW is it immature to be upset , jealous even. Apparently this man hates my guts why I dont know because ive never met him or even heard of him.All the same hes loved by my kids.So I have to accept these conditions again with another new Dad on the scene while still having a strained relationship with my kids.

    It is very very difficult to look at facebook and see how beautiful my daughter and my grandchildren are.She has a good man who hasnt brought into the rubbish and is all about the grandchildrens welfare.
    Please lord I say I hope this doesnt go generational Her mother and group of influenced supporters instantly responded when my Daughter befreinded me on facebook.

    Honestly a man has done less time away from family with a murder charge.Only this is still on going.
    I live in hope I live with the sound knowledge that secretly my daughter has said to me. “I got your back Dad I know Mums been a right C to you over many many years and want you to promise me you will get to know my children. “how could I not want too”. I had to GIVE WAY which is so much different from GIVING UP.

    Yet still my relationship is fractured by outside influences that keep interfering. If I react they win. If I dont react I get accused for not caring. If Im silent with respect for not reacting I still dont care.If I ask questions ,im accused of having giving up rights and have none because of it.This is generational hate in a family without cause. This is what my Daughter has to endure and suffer as well as me as her Father

    People who accuse Fathers of running away from responsiblity and accused of not paying support
    are quite welcome to go to the start of my walk and wear my shoes.See if you can endure over 20 years off abuse and abduction with appsolutely no say in your childs best interests or welfare

    Then to find out after many years of abuse and lies that their is no law against it too continue regardless

    .While social services are there through policy to help they are callous, cold hearted and just out right debt collectors towards Fathers.

    Currently there is no accountablity for such actions.Why am I held accountable when the Mother has never been or every likely to be held accountable.Why have services disrupted,intervened, and helped alienate a fathers right to see his children without evidence or cause.
    Surely anyone would expect there must be accountablity. After all Ive had to accept responsiblity by policy and law .The same law that ignored my rights.

    I shiver inside,doom, helplessness, loneleness its cold embraces me yet again, Anger and Frustration have long ago died inside without water of hope
    Once again but mostly
    I FEAR…..real fear. That which is so important is so fickle its on a knife edge to be lost all over again.

    Comment by joseph — Tue 2nd June 2015 @ 1:47 pm

  25. You’ve butted your head against gynocentrism for long enough.
    Now it’s time for YOU to put yourself first and foremost.
    let go. Move on and reclaim a life YOU can enjoy, doing the things YOU enjoy.
    The time for selfless masculinity is over.

    This is how I live after over 20 years of not seeing my offspring.
    No matter what anybody else thinks of me I know I’m a good man, fathering from a distance by creating a better world then the gynocentric one I was abused by. I’m happier than I have been for decades these days.

    Comment by MGTOW — Thu 4th June 2015 @ 1:59 am

  26. Dear Murrray,

    you are generally correct, but the solutions lie elsewhere, i believe Femily court must be disbanded as the conflict of interest is self evident. automatic 5050 custody unless mutually agreed by parents and/or children at a family conference within 2 weeks of breakup. if disputed then it goes to a jury.

    ‘Protection’ orders are a lie and should only be given where a conviction for harming that person has been previously made by a jury, otherwise they increase danger, logically.And unless females are going to be made accountable for their actions to the same degree as men then sexist anti-male bias is proven as males have exactly the same pai9n receptors as females and females are often larger and/or stronger and have been proven to use weapons more. Sadly the police are heavily anti-male – this is a culture that comes from the top managementand is their spoken policy. Is this a government plot against males? It obviously is, as this does not happen accidently and for such a long time.

    At the very least a flat fee for all lawyers and ‘judges’ for each case to reduce self interest by them.

    Comment by Phil watts — Mon 8th June 2015 @ 4:45 pm

  27. I recall the mothers lawyer asked;
    What do you do when your children are getting changed in their rooms ?
    Isn’t it true you just walk in?
    Do you watch your daughter on the toilet?

    The judge asked the mother directly – even though you are represented and therefore don’t have to answer this but I would like to ask you, do you or have you ever had any issues or concerns of an in appropriate sexual nature from the father.

    Answer from the mother, no none at all, he is an excellent father, our daughter even says dad tells me to shut the door I should have my privacy.

    Clearly these questions / allegations as I recall them were dreamed up by a nasty feminist short fat family court lawyer who has children to a chap with a dubious past and it is likely that she is un able to uncouple her personal situation with her so called professional situation. This legal aid jockey is known in porirua and went down the path dof alleged sexual in appropriate behaviour with out instruction from her client.

    Imagine 23 hearings in the family court all with out a sexual allegation until this disgraceful excuse for a professional produces this. What’s worse – she will be plying the same hackneyed taxpayer funded dross again. Lawyers like her should be disbarred and named and shamed in the press if the NZ Family Court is to have any hope of reversing its public profile. This profile and perception just seems to get worse, potentially good fathers give up before they start, others give up after perhaps their 10th court appearance, the court actually knows the average appearances before a father gives up.

    After this the mother might try and get a male mentor for the kid, a complete stranger.
    The best bet for fathers is perhaps to get fucked over by the court, lawyers c4c, psychologists, process and give up.
    The fathers then have a better/ easier/ less expensive way to get to see their own child, they can simply become a male mentor for their child when the mother goes help, help my kid is off the rails – he needs a male mentor (but not his own father) a bloody stranger via the big buddy programs or some such organization.

    So fathers, give up on the family court, join a male mentoring program and wait.

    Comment by Paul — Tue 9th June 2015 @ 12:22 am

  28. Dear Jane,

    I am an alienated mum who has not spoken to her 3 children (aged 11, 10 and 6) for the past 7 months! I fought court application after court application (and now bankrupt with a huge Legal Aid debt!) against and obsessed alienator father who fits every word under your “PAS is an escalation of Parental Alienation (PA)” section. I lost the case to relocate with my children to South Africa in 2011. I was forced to leave NZ when I faced bankruptcy in 2011. My ex and I were born in SA and have dual citizenship with NZ. All 3 children were born in NZ.

    It has been most difficult getting a mental health evaluation of my ex-husband which is so necessary as the 3 children are living in a home where they are brainwashed into believing that I am bad for them. They visited in December 2014 and I was given strict instructions on who they were to stay with (including his own family who were themselves alienators), methods of communication and what would happen if I did not “obey”. I missed 1 phone call from their father, it was declared that this would be my last interaction with the children. Indeed he stuck to this and I have not seen or spoken to my children since Jan 2015!

    They told him that they did not want to return to NZ with him and the step mother (who used to be my best friend), and that was seen as gross insubordination. Consequently they were not allowed to speak to me again. I fear for the well-being of my 3 kids being raised by a narcissist and his latest victim.

    Is there any family solicitor in NZ who has enough experience with PAS to correctly identify and report this information to court? I understand how difficult it is to prove, because my ex has become the master manipulator of passing off the “family” as normal, and has repeatedly told me to stay away from them because they are a family now and the children no longer need me.

    I have lost EVERYTHING fighting for my children over the past 5 years. I understand that having them relocated to South Africa is going to be difficult, but it is much more than that now. Their dad has proven that he is incapable of making decisions in their best interests. (currently there is a court order(made in my absence in 2012) in place which states that the judge is confident that he understands the importance of their relationship with their mum in South Africa, and she has no doubt that he will facilitate contact “. Clearly that is not the case, as he actually believes that it is now his life’s mission to keep the children from the mum they so desperately need.

    Please help me in any way possible. I need a lawyer/psychiatrist team who is experienced with PAS, and especially identifying and appropriately acting in such a matter. I have a pro bono attorney who is assisting me in South Africa, and desperately require assistance in NZ. There is currently a Hague application for access to the children, but I don’t know the extent of psychiatric evaluation they perform or whether they could work in conjunction with lawyers there. Either way, my children are already traumatized by not speaking to me for 7 months, when previously we were on Skype at least once a week (largely dependent on the mood of their father or step-mother). I am extremely uneasy about their well-being and their safety.

    Please feel free to email me in private.

    Comment by Alienated Mother — Mon 20th July 2015 @ 8:10 am

  29. Parental Alienation as an Outcome of Paternal Discrimination by JOeP ZAnDer in New Male Studies Journal

    Parental alienation syndrome (PAS) in children is studied using a case study of a father, mother and
    daughter and the restoration of a child-fatherrelationship after PAS. Three in-depth interviews provide
    insight into the dynamics of parental alienation and the way they can be further investigated.
    Paternal discrimination is seen as a critical variable.

    Keywords: Parental alienation syndrome; parental alienation disorder; fatherhood; paternal discrimination;

    In 2002 and the years following, the authorinterviewed a father, mother and daughter who had been
    living in a situation of ongoing alienation since 1985. In 2004, the interviews together with an analysis of the case were published in Dutch (Zander, 2004) as a study of the restoration of a child-father relationship.

    This study is built around three in-depth interviews with a grown up daughter, her mother
    and her father. That all involved parties were willing to speak out so candidly was quite unique.
    The initial publication played an importantrole in the discussion of parental alienation syndrome
    (PAS) in the netherlands. In 2011, the syndrome was presented in the perspective of paternal
    discrimination as well as paternal care and responsibility (Zander, 2011). This Dutch research has
    implications for fathers throughout the world.

    It is important to analyze the dynamics of PAS without prejudice to either parent. Accordingly,
    where we see discrimination against fathers as a cause of parental alienation we should not
    deny it. It is true that mothers also often find themselves as alienated parents. Here we will focus on
    the experience of fathers.

    Gardner(1998) was the firstto describe PAS as a pattern of emotional abuse leading to severe
    problems for children. related phenomena had already been described by the mid-20th century
    (Bernet, 2008). Gardner’s definition of PAS is as follows:

    Parental alienation syndrome (PAS) is a disorderthat arises primarily in the context of childcustody
    disputes. Its primary manifestation is the child’s campaign of denigration against a
    parent, a campaign that has no justification. Itresults from the combination of programming
    (brainwashing) of a parent’s indoctrinations and the child’s own contributions to the vilification
    of the target parent.

    When true parental abuse and/or neglect is present the child’s animosity may be justified,
    and so the parental alienation syndrome explanation forthe child’s hostility is not applicable.
    (Gardner, 1998, p. xx).

    Gardner described eight important symptoms of PAS that appear in the child. They include a campaign
    of denigration and hatred against the targeted parent. Weak, absurd or frivolous rationalizations
    for this deprecation and hatred are used. There is a lack of the usual ambivalence about the
    targeted parent. Strong assertions are made that the decision to reject the targeted parent is the
    child’s alone (the ‘independent-thinker phenomenon’). There is reflexive support of the favored
    parent in the conflict. Lack of guilt over the treatment of the alienated parent is typical. The child
    makes use of borrowed scenarios and phrases from the alienating parent. Denigration of the targeted
    parent extends to that parent’s family and friends.

    When Gardner described PAS, he originally made a clear distinction between the role of fathers
    and mothers. He tended to prefer the assignment of custody to the mother, despite the fact
    that, in his opinion she was most often alienating parent. Much later he tended to emphasize the
    equal contribution to the problem by both parents. This view seemed to be inspired by a strategy to
    convince powerful organizations supporting mothers that it was in their best interests to acknowledge PAS.

    In the aforementioned article (Zander, 2011), the authortried to design a vision of PAS as not
    only being a question of one parent opposing the other, butrather of a more structural matter. Gardner
    (Gardner, 1992, p. 1) had already emphasized the role of the judicial adversary system in the
    pathogenesis of parental alienation. He also points to the tender years presumption1
    as a part of the
    sociological and historical embedding of the problem. He also argued against equal parenting, thinking
    that this invokes conflicts since it has the potential to threaten the primary position of the

    The main elements of PAS have been proposed forinclusion in DSM-V and ICD-11 as Parental
    Alienation Disorder (PAD). The definition of PAD contains a wider vision of pathogenesis. In that
    case, it is less necessary to attribute the cause of parental alienation to just one parent. The diagnosis is based on the manifestation of the syndrome in the child (Bernet, 2008, p. 362).

    In one sense, this can be seen to support the views of those who still refuse to acknowledge
    the syndrome even exists and who often state that it is not always one parent who is the victim (often
    taken to be the father). The situation is sometimes not what it appears to be.

    On the other hand, this leaves room for socio-judicial dynamics to be seen as a main cause
    of parental alienation. First is the discrimination against fathers by existing legislation and among
    the legal and social work professions (Baskerville, 2002). Second is the principle of ‘the most fit to
    fight parent can win,’ a principle that goes against the wisdom of the Solomon verdict which rejects
    the concept of ‘owning a child.’ The combined effect of those two dynamics often causes a father
    who is desperately trying to stay in touch with his children to adoptthe compensatory tactic of choosing
    to ‘fightto win.’ Although both parents have responsibility forthe means they use to retain closeness
    with their children, this reaction can well be an effect of discrimination against fathers.

    We should not ignore that discrimination in general has many side effects such as creating
    negative behavior by those discriminated against (Dion, earn, & Yee, 1978). Self-fulfilling effects of
    discrimination are mostly studied starting from the hypothesis of the stigmatization of woman, but
    it is reasonable to believe that gender-stigmatization can occurin men as well (Heatherton, 2003, p.
    382). The perspective of losing one’s children feels like an upcoming amputation for most parents.
    Some children use that metaphor when looking back at the loss of their father. In the dynamics of
    family law, it is quite understandable desperate contests occur.

    When the mother becomes an alienated parent this often originates with understandable
    fear of the father who took extra measures to prevent himself from being alienated. Sometimes the
    alienation of the mother is secondary and starts with a real threat from her. That being the case, it
    might be useful to consider PAS in the context of a paternal discrimination system. This also applies
    in cases where the mother has lost her children to the father.

    Insofar as PAS is acknowledged (and it is quite widely), the discussion about the mutuality
    of ‘programming’ the child is important (Darnall, 2011). Is it both parents who contribute? This differs
    in various cases and situations, but often one parent is still in the position to influence the child
    and the other is no longer. Blaming one of the parents for quarreling is often the adopted position
    of institutions and politicians since it is an easy way to bypass their own responsibility, which is to
    create a healthy climate for both parents and children.
    Denigration and discrimination of fatherhood can be a factor in the onset of PAS with the
    loss of fatherly care. Children need unconditional parental love and care to grow and to gain trust in
    their social environment. The occurrence of PAS in the Western world seems to fit in with a history
    of fading fatherhood, including the diminishment in general of parental status and responsibility,
    which seems to have been gradually replaced by the growing importance of ‘the best interests of the
    child” as determined by institutions and the state. Despite the growing awareness of the importance
    of recognizing and responding to the immediate needs of the child, their needs are in fact apparently
    being neglected, especially in situations where the child loses contact with one of his or her parents.

    and the other is no longer. Blaming one of the parents for quarreling is often the adopted position
    of institutions and politicians since it is an easy way to bypass their own responsibility, which is to
    create a healthy climate for both parents and children.
    Denigration and discrimination of fatherhood can be a factor in the onset of PAS with the
    loss of fatherly care. Children need unconditional parental love and care to grow and to gain trust in
    their social environment. The occurrence of PAS in the Western world seems to fit in with a history
    of fading fatherhood, including the diminishment in general of parental status and responsibility,
    which seems to have been gradually replaced by the growing importance of ‘the best interests of the
    child” as determined by institutions and the state. Despite the growing awareness of the importance
    of recognizing and responding to the immediate needs of the child, their needs are in fact apparently
    being neglected, especially in situations where the child loses contact with one of his or her parents.
    Read the whole paper, for a good overview and I believe a balanced approach. He well describes the lack of skilled performance by judges, in attempting to handle these situations.

    Comment by MurrayBacon — Mon 14th September 2015 @ 12:50 pm


    Irish article on parental alienation.

    Comment by Boonie — Sat 20th July 2019 @ 9:19 am

  31. These are our signatories to a collective memo of objection

    101. Dr Peter Adams, Professor, Social & Community Health, University of Auckland
    102. Dr Jackie Blue, former New Zealand Human Rights Commissioner (Women’s Rights)
    103. Jane Drumm, General Manager, Shine (Safer Homes in NZ Everyday) Auckland
    104. Dr Vivienne Elizabeth, Associate Professor, Sociology, University of Auckland
    105. Dr Nicola Gavey, Professor, Psychology, University of Auckland
    106. Dr Deborah Hager, Lecturer, Health Promotion, School of Population Health, University
    of Auckland
    107. Ruth Herbert, Co-Founder, The Backbone Collective
    108. Dr Sue Jackson, Associate Professor, Psychology, Victoria University of Wellington
    109. Dr Ang Jury, Chief Executive, National Collective of Women’s Refuges, NZ
    110. Dr Jade Le Grice, Lecturer, Psychology, University of Auckland
    111. Deborah Mackenzie, Co-founder, The Backbone Collective, New Zealand
    112. Dr Kathryn McPhillips, Clinical Psychologist, Executive Director, Auckland Sexual
    Abuse Help Foundation
    113. Dr Mandy Morgan, Professor, Psychology, Massey University
    114. Leonie Morris, Community Worker, Auckland Women’s Centre, NZ
    115. Nicola Paton, Family Violence Clearinghouse, University of Auckland, New Zealand
    116. Dr Neville Robertson, Senior Lecturer, Psychology, Waikato University
    117. Dr Michael Tarren-Sweeney, Professor of Child & Family Psychology, School of Health
    Sciences, University of Canterbury, New Zealand, editor of Developmental Child Welfare
    118. Professor Julia Tolmie, Faculty of Law, The University of Auckland

    Comment by Boonie — Sat 20th July 2019 @ 2:05 pm


    Part way down the page is a link to the PDF

    Comment by Boonie — Sat 20th July 2019 @ 2:11 pm

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