Unregulated psychologists and the Family Court

“Much like an allegation of domestic abuse; the decision about whether or not a parent has alienated a child is a question of fact for the Court to resolve and not a diagnosis that can or should be offered by a psychologist. For these purposes, the ACP-UK wishes to emphasise that ‘parental alienation’ is not a syndrome capable of being diagnosed, but a process of manipulation of children perpetrated by one parent against the other through, what are termed as, ‘alienating behaviours.’ It is, fundamentally, a question of fact.”[1]


Q & A – When to let go of an alienated child?

Letting go of an alienated child can be an incredibly difficult and painful experience for a parent. Alienation occurs when a child becomes estranged from one parent due to the actions or words of the other parent. This can be a result of many factors, such as divorce or separation, parental conflict, or even psychological manipulation by one parent.

If you are a parent who is experiencing alienation from your child, it is important to seek support and guidance from professionals who can help you navigate the complex emotional and legal issues involved. This may include counseling or therapy, legal advice, or mediation.

While it can be difficult, sometimes letting go of an alienated child may be necessary for your own well-being and the well-being of your family. This may involve accepting that you cannot control the situation or the behavior of the other parent, and focusing on your own personal growth and healing. It may also involve setting boundaries and taking steps to protect yourself from further harm.

It is important to remember that letting go does not necessarily mean giving up on the relationship with your child. You can still express your love and support in healthy ways, such as sending cards or letters, or offering to attend family therapy together. Ultimately, it is important to prioritize your own emotional well-being and to seek out resources and support to help you cope with the pain of alienation.

Q & A – How to protect myself from the PA?

Protecting yourself from a parental alienator can be a challenging and emotionally draining process. Here are some steps you can take to protect yourself:

  1. Document everything: Keep a record of all communication, such as emails, text messages, and phone calls, and any behavior or actions that you believe are part of the alienation. This can be important evidence if you need to take legal action.
  2. Stay calm: It can be difficult, but try to remain calm and composed in your interactions with the alienator. Avoid responding with anger or frustration, as this can escalate the situation.
  3. Seek support: Find a support system of friends, family, or a therapist who can provide emotional support and guidance.
  4. Consult with a lawyer: If the alienation is severe, you may need to consult with a lawyer who is experienced in family law. They can help you understand your legal options and provide guidance on how to proceed.
  5. Focus on your child: Even if the alienation is difficult, it is important to continue to prioritize your child’s needs and maintain a healthy relationship with them. Avoid speaking negatively about the alienator in front of your child and continue to show love and support.
  6. Consider mediation: In some cases, mediation can be a helpful way to resolve conflicts and improve communication between parents. A trained mediator can help facilitate productive discussions and find solutions that work for both parties.

It is important to remember that protecting yourself from a parental alienator can be a difficult and long process. It is important to be patient, persistent, and seek out the support you need to cope with the emotional toll of the situation.

Q & A – I am a step parent dealing with and parental alienation

Parental alienation is a serious issue that can occur in blended families, where a child is manipulated or influenced to reject a parent, often by the other parent or stepparent. This can be incredibly harmful to the child and can strain relationships between family members.

Step parents may face unique challenges in dealing with parental alienation, as they may not have the same legal rights as biological parents and may be viewed with suspicion or mistrust by the child or other family members.

If you are a step parent dealing with parental alienation, here are some steps you can take:

  1. Educate yourself about parental alienation and its effects on children and families.
  2. Communicate with the biological parent and try to work together to address the issue.
  3. Encourage open communication between the child and both parents, while remaining neutral and not speaking negatively about the other parent.
  4. Seek support from a therapist or support group to help you navigate the emotional challenges of dealing with parental alienation.
  5. Consider seeking legal advice to determine your rights and options in the situation.

It’s important to remember that dealing with parental alienation can be a long and difficult process, but with persistence and the right support, it is possible to work through it and rebuild healthy relationships within the family.

©Linda Turner http://parentalalienationpas.com 2023

Q & A – Life after Parental Alienation, is it possible?

Life after parental alienation can be challenging, but it is possible to heal and rebuild relationships with your child or children. Here are some steps that may be helpful in the healing process:

  1. Seek professional help: Consider working with a therapist or counselor who is experienced in working with families affected by parental alienation. A mental health professional can help you to process your emotions, develop coping strategies, and build a plan for moving forward.
  2. Reconnect with your child: If your child has been alienated from you, it may take time and patience to rebuild your relationship. Start by reaching out to your child in a non-threatening way, such as sending a letter or email expressing your love and desire to reconnect. Avoid placing blame or making accusations, as this is likely to be counterproductive.
  3. Focus on rebuilding trust: Rebuilding trust with your child may take time and effort. Be patient and persistent, and focus on showing your child that you are reliable, trustworthy, and committed to their well-being.
  4. Take care of yourself: Dealing with parental alienation can be emotionally exhausting. Make sure to prioritize your own self-care, such as getting enough sleep, exercise, and social support. It is important to take care of your own emotional well-being in order to be there for your child.
  5. Stay positive: While it may be difficult, try to stay positive and focus on the future. Set realistic goals for rebuilding your relationship with your child, and celebrate small victories along the way.

It is important to remember that healing from parental alienation is a process that takes time and effort. With patience, persistence, and the right support, it is possible to rebuild your relationship with your child and move forward in a positive way.

©Linda Turner http://parentalalienationpas.com 2023

PA Checklist

Parental alienation is a complex issue that can occur in divorce or custody disputes. It is a situation where one parent intentionally or unintentionally undermines the relationship between a child and the other parent. Here are some signs of parental alienation:

  1. Denigration: One parent constantly criticizes the other parent in front of the child, calling them names or using derogatory language.
  2. Limiting Contact: One parent limits the amount of contact the child has with the other parent, by not allowing phone calls, visits, or exchanges.
  3. Withholding Information: One parent withholds information from the other parent, such as the child’s schedule, medical appointments, or school activities.
  4. False Allegations: One parent makes false allegations against the other parent, such as abuse or neglect, without evidence or justification.
  5. Influence on Child’s Feelings: One parent tries to influence the child’s feelings towards the other parent, by saying negative things about them or blaming them for the divorce.
  6. Interference with Parenting Time: One parent interferes with the other parent’s parenting time, by showing up late, cancelling visitations or not showing up at all.
  7. Using Children as Messengers: One parent uses the child as a messenger to communicate with the other parent, instead of communicating directly.
  8. Disparaging Family Members: One parent disparages the other parent’s family members, such as grandparents, aunts or uncles, in front of the child.
  9. Manipulating the Child’s Mind: One parent manipulates the child’s mind, making them think that the other parent is not interested in them or doesn’t love them.
  10. Indifference to Child’s Needs: One parent acts indifferently to the child’s needs, disregarding their emotional or physical well-being.

If you are experiencing any of these signs, it is important to seek professional help and support. It is crucial to address parental alienation as soon as possible to minimize its negative impact on the child’s development and the parent-child relationship.

©Linda Turner http://parentalalienationpas.com 2023

Testamentary Freedom, do we have it?

However, there is no ‘right’ to inherit from a person’s estate, no matter how you are related to the person who has died, and just because someone makes a claim against an estate does not necessarily mean that they will be successful.

The most important thing you can do to mitigate any sort of claim against your estate, is to make a Will, as this document clearly shows that you have thought about what you would like to happen to your estate upon your death. You can also leave a document with your Will, called a Letter of Wishes, which sets out your reasons for why you have left your Will as you have, and it gives your executors something to use against any claim.

If you do not make a Will, then there are certain rules that have to be followed, called the Intestacy Rules, which can be quite complex, and could mean that your estate ends up with people that you did not want to benefit.

PA Cases and court orders

1. In re Marriage of B.L. and J.L. (2020): In this case, the court found that the mother had engaged in parental alienation against the father, and ordered her to attend counseling and parenting classes.

2. In re Marriage of M.L. and J.L. (2020): In this case, the court found that the mother had engaged in parental alienation against the father, and ordered her to attend counseling and parenting classes.

A court order to attend counseling and parenting classes typically requires the person to attend a certain number of sessions with a qualified counselor or parenting instructor. The court order may also require the person to complete any assignments or tests given by the counselor or instructor. The court order may also require the person to pay for the counseling or parenting classes. The court order may also require the person to provide proof of attendance or completion of the classes.

Examples of counseling and parenting classes


1. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

2. Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)

3. Solution-Focused Therapy

4. Family Therapy

5. Group Therapy

6. Trauma-Focused Therapy

Mindfulness-Based Therapy Parenting Classes:

1. Positive Parenting 2

. Parenting with Love and Logic

3. Conscious Parenting

4. Attachment Parenting

Beware of the Malevolent Dark Triad

Think of the Dark Triad of narcissism, psychopathy, and Machiavellianism as the Bermuda Triangle – it’s perilous to get near it! The traits of all three often overlap and create personality profiles that are damaging and toxic, especially when it comes to intimate relationships, where we let our guard down.

One woman was the subject of identity fraud. Her bank accounts and credit cards were compromised. At the time, she was in love with her boyfriend who lived with her in her apartment. She was speaking regularly with the FBI and suffered extreme anxiety and emotional stress. The authorities were unsuccessful in finding the culprit.

Her fiancé was very supportive in doing research to try to find him. He comforted her, occasionally bought her gifts, and paid her monthly rent out of money she gave him. When eventually the landlord confronted her about months of delinquency, she realized that the criminal was in fact her own boyfriend, who had been pocketing her rent money, except to buy her gifts. Her denial made it difficult to accept the truth about his ruthless gaslighting. Continue reading “Beware of the Malevolent Dark Triad”

Helping Children with Emotional Regulation

The aim of the present study was to examine the moderating role of parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous system functioning on the relationship between child temperament and emotion regulation. Sixty-two 4.5-year olds (31 females) were rated by their parents on temperamental surgency. Respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA) and pre-ejection period (PEP) were measured at baseline and in reaction to an interaction with an unfamiliar person and a cognitive test. The preschoolers’ ability to self-regulate emotion was assessed in response to a disappointment. Results revealed little or no PEP reactivity to the unfamiliar person to be related to poorer emotion regulation for children high in surgency, indicating that the lack of sympathetic activation may be a risk factor for behavioral maladjustment. Reciprocal sympathetic activation, or increases in sympathetic activity accompanied by decreases in parasympathetic activity, was associated with better regulation of emotion for all levels of temperamental surgency supporting previous work that reciprocal activation is an adaptive form of autonomic control.


%d bloggers like this: