When you go through a divorce, you may feel like you have finally reached the other side of the confrontation after its finalization. Unfortunately for many people, the battle does not end even after this point.
This happens with parental alienation. Your child will suffer the most, so it is important to keep an eye out for signs of parental alienation syndrome.
Personality changes in PAS victims
Psychology Today examines signs of parental alienation and the related syndrome it causes. Parental alienation happens when your co-parent makes an active effort to ruin your relationship with your child. They employ many tactics to do this, many of which the courts consider abusive.
As a victim of abuse, children who suffer from parental alienation syndrome (PAS) often display red flags that you can pick up on. First, note changes in their personality. Many PAS sufferers become withdrawn, gloomy and depressed. A previously vivacious child may suddenly seem lethargic and cranky.
Older children may display signs of guilt, conflict and confusion. This may manifest in inward or outward ways. For example, they may lash out at others more often and get into fights. They may also develop harmful coping mechanisms and self-harm due to feelings of blame and guilt.
Words PAS victims lean on
Pay attention to their words, too. Children of PAS often parrot back information from your co-parent that they have no way of truly understanding. They also cannot explain their sudden aversion to you if asked about it in detail. Many will vehemently deny the involvement of your co-parent, too.
If you notice these signs, consult with a legal expert. They can let you know what your options are.