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Solutions for Parental Alienation (PAS) Part 1
When Children Reject Parents Martyn Carruthers

Online Help: Coaching, Counseling & Therapy

Do you feel rejected or betrayed by a parent?
Do you want to manage the consequences of your parents' behavior?

Parent Alienation & Rejection 1: Before Adolescence

Parent Alienation 2: After Adolescence . Covert Emotional Incest

While some parents abuse or reject their own children to gain some benefit,
being a child rejected by a parent feels terrible. If you were rejected because
of someone else's manipulation - you may feel huge anger and/or anxiety.

When Children Reject or Hate a Parent

Although it is a crime to incite hatred on the basis of color, religion, or creed, inciting hatred is common in unhealthy families, and children may be manipulated to hate a parent. A parent who causes a child to reject or hate the other parent is guilty of Parental Alienation (PAS) - sometimes called emotional blackmail.

Parental alienation is often accompanied by covert emotional incest.

The consequences of this child abuse may be delayed until adolescence, when many abused people experience delayed emotions and limiting beliefs. They may suffer self-sabotage, obsessions, compulsions and relationship problems.

Parents who deliberately hurt children may feel a diminished sense of life, and deteriorating relationships with their children, family, community and their God. By sense of life, I refer to any sense of purpose and meaning that you ascribe to your life. (A diminished sense of life seems to be equally true for agnostics and atheists.)

We help people prevent family breakdown, manage its consequences and prevent recurrence. In this terrible game, everybody loses.

My Child Hates Me! / I Hate My Father! / My Father Rejected me!

There are systemic causes and consequences for a parent to abuse a child or for a child to reject a parent. Families, communities and courts often respond emotionally to these situations, usually to support the weaker parent, regardless of any manipulation used to incite a child's rejection or to make a partner appear bad.

In some cases, child victims of parental alienation may hate, abuse or even commit violence against their parents, especially during teenage years when they feel the consequences of their damage with little awareness of how they were damaged.

The adolescent children of abusive parents may be highly emotional - or they may become dissociated, avoiding feeling or expressing any emotions. Their reactions to this relationship damage may become habitual, at least until those emotions are assimilated. (Many damaged people become helping professionals.)

Who is Hurt? Who Suffers?

Although adults may consider young children to be stupid and naive, most children are both intelligent and very sensitive to family relationships. Few children can communicate using adult language, and they be may ignored or ridiculed if they try. Children often communicate with symptoms.

  • Adopted children may be encouraged to dislike or reject their birth parents
  • A child may be guided by family, community or cult members to reject a parent
  • A child may be simultaneously manipulated by both parents to reject each other
  • A child may be manipulated by a parent who wants custody, or to punish the other

Children who reject a parent, rejected parents and rejecting parents will all often suffer lasting emotional consequences. If parent alienation includes covert emotional incest, children may suffer obsessions, relationship problems and/or sexual issues for decades.

Coaching Children . Mother-Son Entanglement . Father-Daughter Bonds

Parents who Alienate or Reject Children

Parental alienation predicts common behavior patterns that we often see during marriage counseling, family therapy and couple coaching, especially concerning separation and custody of children. However, family courts often support biological mothers and deny custody to biological fathers, regardless of facts.

Were You Rejected?

Being rejected is probably not about you ... and there may be little you can do about it. We can help you talk out your feelings, assimilate your emotions, develop whatever relationships are possible and find some resolution or completion.

Whole families can be enmeshed in difficult emotions. Sometimes it's better to say Goodbye for now! Beware, seeking parent-like partners may delay your maturity. We can help you manage your emotions and solve relationship problems.

Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS)

When a parent commences parental alienation, a common pattern is:

  1. A parent of pre-adolescent children rejects his or her partner
  2. The children show loyalty to that parent by rejecting their other parent
  3. A parent tells the children what is true then asks them to tell the truth
  4. The children support their custodial parent and reject the alienated parent
  5. The custodial parent may exaggerate or implant false memories
  6. Following adolescence, victims of this alienation may reject their custodial parents and build relationships with their alienated parents

Sequence of Parental Alienation

We have heard this sad story too often ... parents may reject their partner's qualities expressed by their children. They may tell their children to not talk or act like the other parent. The children learn to hide, reject or even hate these sides of themselves.

  1. The parents experience a conflict that they cannot manage or ignore
  2. Instead of getting coaching, they allow the conflict to become a crisis
  3. One or both parents neglect the effects of their crisis on their children
  4. One parent rejects the partner's qualities (behavior, beliefs and / or values)
  5. That parent rejects the partner's qualities (e.g. don't act like your father!)
  6. The child denies or suppresses qualities similar to those of the alienated parent
  7. The child hides or represses any dangerous qualities of the alienated parent
  8. The child dislikes people who have similar qualities to the alienated parent
  9. The child rejects or hates the alienated parent - privately or publicly
  10. The child identifies with the rejecting parent, who is perceived as a victim

The toxicity of parental alienation may be reflected in legal solutions.
Sometimes a hated parent gains custody of a child, against the child's wishes.

Part 2: After Adolescence

We help people change the consequences of:

  1. covert emotional incest
  2. physical, emotional or sexual abuse
  3. abusing children as dependent hostages
  4. betrayal, rejection or abandonment of one partner by the other
  5. court ordered suffering - child custody by a rejected or hated parent

Do you want to manage your emotions and relationship issues?

Online Help: Coaching, Counseling & Therapy

I thought you were just another therapist - but you were not just. Not even. Not only.

Plagiarism is theft. Copyright Martyn Carruthers 2004-2018
All rights reserved.

If you like our work, please link to us. If you know someone who might benefit,
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For online help, email us at:

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Have You Suffered Enough?

 Where are you now? Understand your emotions, fixations and enmeshments
What do you hope for? Know your goals and stop sabotaging yourself
Do you feel resourceful? Learn to develop your inner resources
Do emotions block you? Relationship problems and mentor damage
Do your beliefs limit you? Change limiting beliefs and end dependence
Do you feel connected? Resolve identity issues to recover lost resources
Is your partner happy? Build healthy partnership (or separate peacefully)
Are your children healthy? Happy parents better manage family problems
Do you want team success? Team leaders and their teams develop together
Do you have complex goals? Specialty coaching, counseling & therapy

Plagiarism is theft. Copyright Martyn Carruthers 1996-2018  All rights reserved. Soulwork Systemic Coaching was primarily developed by Martyn Carruthers to help people solve emotional problems and relationship conflicts to achieve their goals. These concepts and strategies are for general knowledge only. Consult a physician about medical conditions and before changing medical treatment. Don't steal intellectual property ... get permission to post, publish or teach Martyn's work - email