If you notice that your children seem distant from you after visiting your ex-spouse, you may struggle with parental alienation. This problem occurs when an ex-spouse manipulates and coerces a child to turn against his or her other parent.
The effects can last beyond childhood, since it fractures the relationship between you and your children. Knowing some ways to combat this can help to stop it before the issue grows.
Stay calm and open
According to Psychology Today, staying collected and happy around your children can help them relax. Do not press for information about your ex-spouse or what he or she is doing.
Instead, focus on having fun and creating good memories. This unconditional support and relaxed environment can help your children feel safe and loved. By giving your children this place, you can help counteract the negativity coming from your ex-spouse.
Having a time and place, such as bedtime, to discuss any emotions or worries can help children learn to talk about what is bothering them instead of keeping it all inside.
Not only does this encourage discussion between you both, but it also can help your children heal from any alienation or drama in their other place of residence.
Write it all down
Logging each moment soon after it happens is useful for anyone struggling to prove this phenomenon. Having written notes can help you remember the past clearly and gives you proof to show someone if you wish to talk to a third party.
Parental alienation is a serious topic, and staying aware of how it works can help you during this time.