Monday, 17 September 2007

Parental Alienators are liars.

He tried his disowning trick on me in March 2005, over two years ago. It backfired because I never went back to him. He just thinks I'm being stubborn. He wrote a letter at Christmas that year (I think it was then, was possibly her birthday two months after Christmas) to my daughter, telling her that the not-speaking was a) not her fault (which is true, of course, but did I not already tell her that? Why does he think that I would tell her anything else? She was 13. She was big enough to know that for herself), and b) that "it won't last long".

What does that mean: "It won't last long"? What that tells me is that he disowned me quite violently (figuratively), deliberately saying the nastiest, cruellest things he could think of, making fun of me, mocking me, tormenting me and taunting me - but didn't mean it? What this latter tells me is that he didn't mean any of it and that it was all a power play. Should I expect anything less from a Parental Alienator?

It felt like a tantrum at the time, because he couldn't get his own way, and I really don't think he meant it. I think he thought he had so much power over me that I'd fall in line and come running - after all, hadn't I always done that up to that point?

But he went behind my back and verbally challenged my daughter. He challenged my parenting. He went behind my back!! How dare he?! I'm not my mother! He also nagged and nagged and nagged me about my religious beliefs. He would never let it go - but then, hadn't I always been the obedient daughter until then?

I guess it was a matter of time before I realised that he is a control freak. The nagging about my religion was a control issue. He felt he had the right to go behind my back and tell my then 13 year old that my beliefs are wrong (incidentally, she laughed about it because, she said, when he told her that his disagreement with our beliefs doesn't make him wrong, she thought, "Well, actually, it does" :>>>). He bullied me about my religion and it made me think. It made me uncomfortable - and then when I wouldn't give in and asserted myself (for the FIRST time EVER), he went ballistic.

Then he lied about me! My uncle later told me that my male parent had actually sat in front of him with tears in his eyes and said that *I* had disowned him! LIAR! LIAR! LIAR!

Add this knowledge to the shocking twisted email he sent me and my brain nearly exploded.

I feel now like a big chunk of my life was fake. He RUINED my childhood. Deliberately. HE DESTROYED my relationship with my mother. BY CHOICE. Right now, I'm so effing angry, I have dreams about screaming rage at him.

He RUINED my childhood. He RUINED my childhood. He RUINED my childhood. He RUINED my childhood.

HE DESTROYED my relationship with my mother. HE DESTROYED my relationship with my mother. HE DESTROYED my relationship with my mother. HE DESTROYED my relationship with my mother.

I'm so angry. I can't tell you how angry I am. I am furious. So filled with rage that I want to scream and cry.

My mother is dead and he's happy about it. He's happy that he made me hate her while she was alive. He's happy that my relationship with her was ruined because he made me love her more than him - but it's not true anymore and that was never real love because anything I felt for him was based on a lie and HE NEVER LOVED ME EITHER.

He could not love me if he could do that to me.

I feel angry and guilty, still. I want to tell my mother how sorry I am but I can't. Though I know life goes on after death and I know that she is aware of what I'm going through now, and that she's also aware of everything that has happened, I still feel these emotions now.

My childhood was a tragedy because of a parental alienator.

Saturday, 15 September 2007

The parent that never speaks aids the alienation

My mother never said much about my male parent or his actions. Not to me anyway. It confused me. I often said, even when I was very, very young, that I wished I knew both sides of the story. Without both sides, I only have the alienator's story to believe. I had no alternative and, as a seven, eight, nine year old, did not have the mental capacity to understand that there WAS another side to the story.

I understand her motives: protection of her children and herself. She wanted to keep us out of adult problems as much as possible but also did not want to dwell on a relationship she had fled. Her marriage was over, in her mind.

Unfortunately, by keeping quiet, she unwittingly made matters worse. What I wanted to hear was that she loved me and wanted me, that my male parent was lying. I needed to know this but never heard it. The only time in my whole life that I can remember her telling me that she loved me was literally on her death bed. Maybe she assumed I knew. I don't know.

She did not want to involve us in what was already a difficult and protracted divorce.

If you're in this situation with your children right now, tell them you love them OFTEN. Tell them that your divorce is nothing to do with them and that BOTH parents love them. Don't do what the alienator does: don't tell the kids that the other parent is being mean or that if they really loved their kids, they would be nicer, etcetera. Don't do that! They don't want to hear it! They don't want the details of your marriage or divorce! I had that rammed down my throat when I was far too young to cope with or digest it or understand it. Adult concepts in a child mind mean confusion and disturbance. I did not need to know. What I needed was reassurance that both my parents love me. I never got that. I got little affection from one (naturally reticent) parent and plenty of affection from the other one, but all swamped by assurances that the reason the former didn't hug me was because she didn't love me, and that the latter was the only one who really cared about me.

This confused me even more: at the age of eight I could not understand why he chose to live four hours from us. If she was so terrible a person, why did he abandon us to her?

Friday, 14 September 2007

Pick a noun ...

Parental Alienation is:

Brainwashing, mind control, bullying, child abuse, selfish, revenge, childish, unhealthy, cruel, nasty.

The results are:

Pain, loss, grief, tears, hurt, betrayal, mistrust, loss, anger, more loss.

Today I am angry, hurt and bereaved. Actually I am these things every day. Today I am these things but do not want to be. I want them removed from me. I am tired of carrying them. I am angry at that person for doing this to me. I am hopeful and looking forward to the future because I will find release and peace.

I am determined.

"It's her own fault she has cancer"

Continuing from previous post.

The more I think about it, the greater the adjective. I wasn't and am not shocked that anyone would say that someone deserves to develop cancer. I am absolutely stunned. Astonished. And yet, he used to say it in such a blase manner, as if it was as normal as eating breakfast. It's such a cruel, low-down, evil concept: he was glad she had cancer? Had he wished it upon her? Doesn't that, by inference, mean that he was glad my sister and I, and our two much younger brothers from our mother's second marriage, were about to lose our mother?

I remember how he behaved when she started seeing our step-dad. I've been left too, so I know how painful it is to see your ex with someone else, or even just to know that they have moved on. He was still reeling from the split so he must have been devastated. However, it didn't stop him. I guess it wouldn't. His frame of mind was then and is now the same. Even now, thirty years after their divorce, he will still happily give you a good rant about my mother with no less bitterness than when I was seven.

My step-dad wanted to make a good impression, naturally. He's a good man and I love him dearly (although it took me a long time, perhaps a decade at least, because my male parent couldn't say anything good about him either, and, as you will see, planted mistrust in my little mind about my step-dad's motives).

Step-dad ran a market stall on which he sold toys, particularly big cuddly teddy bears. He gave my sister and I a lovely bear each. I chose a tabby coloured bear, she chose a red one. We loved them! We were so poor at the time and our male parent kept EVERYTHING from the house, including our toys. He would not let our mother or us have anything. I can honestly say that by the time the divorce and visitation details had been thrashed out, I could not even remember my toys - the toys I had owned for seven, eight years! He wouldn't let us have them and so, instead of pining for them, we forgot about them. I had absolutely no bond with bears that I'd taken to bed my whole life. The bears that our step-dad gave us were like Christmas coming to two poverty stricken little girls living in a cramped house with our mother, aunt, uncle and grandparents. We were so poor that my school bag was a plastic carrier bag and my pencil case a plastic transparent sandwich bag, so you can imagine how happy those teddy bears made us.

The male parent said that we'd had only been given the bears because our step-dad was trying to buy our love. That put a damper on things. It spoiled the gift, but I guess that was what he wanted. I can still remember the feeling and the words. I was so happy: "Look what he gave me!" "He only gave you that to buy your love". To me, that meant: he doesn't really care about you. So I always thought: my step-dad doesn't care about me. He doesn't want me around. (When my brothers were born later, my male parent said, during the pregnancies, "They'll be more interested in the baby than you".)

Now this smells like more objectification to me. He didn't care how disappointed I felt or how hurt that he would trample on my OBVIOUS happiness. He had kept all my toys for so long I had forgotten them so sympathetic adults tried to help me, make up for the loss. My step-dad was just being kind. He's a good guy, although I wasn't allowed to like him.

Power games. Mind games. Selfishness. Objectification.

All I wanted was to be able to love all my parents - all three of them at this point - and not have to worry about saying anything that would set the alienator off. I just wanted to be able to enjoy all their company without him watching for an opportunity to criticize my mother or step-father or mother's family. When I showed him that bear, I wanted him to be as happy for me as I was.

Argh. I'm really angry now. It may only seem like a bear to you but it's a metaphor in a very real sense. It set the tone for nearly every conversation with the alienator after that. He was always looking - and finding - ways to criticize and belittle my home life. He wouldn't just let me be happy. I feel so hurt that his own feelings meant more than those of a seven year old. I'm still hurting now. I've hurt constantly for the past thirty years and I'm tired of it, hence the counselling and the blog. I need to let go of the pain. I want to let go of it! It just hurts so much to have a parent who doesn't love you.

Guilt, my culpability, inappropriate behaviour

My counsellor said I'm perhaps "naive" and "trusting". My ex-boyfriend, co-parent and now good friend, once said I was "too trusting and that's why I get hurt".

I'm trying to work out why I succumbed to Parental Alienation as an adult. I used to think my male parent was never wrong, even perhaps when he behaved inappropriately towards me. I can remember how surprised I was whenever he did anything like that. His reaction was a smile and normal behaviour so I'd then worry that I was overreacting to him running his hand up and down my back to see if I was wearing a bra or rubbing my breast with the back of his hand when I bent over in front of him or even when he drew boobs on a picture of me my eldest daughter asked him to draw (which she remembers).

I feel so stupid at the moment. I also feel cruel and complicit in the misery the Parental Alienation caused my Mother.

I was manipulated into behaving angrily towards her. I was manipulated into attributing ulterior motives to all her behaviour. He used to tell me she was promiscuous. He said her second divorce (from a philanderer) was "karma" and that so was the cancer that killed her. He said that the cancer was her own fault and the universe avenging itself upon her. I was in my early twenties when he blamed her divorce on karma without knowing the details, and remembering wondering if he was right. At the time, I was still furious with her and "on his side" so I agreed in a way. I was not fully convinced in karma at all, not having any religious beliefs of any kind at the time, but I certainly believed that if karma existed, then she was reaping what she had sowed. He once said she would never be faithful to her second husband (I don't believe she would ever have been unfaithful, personally. Even when I was angry at her, I would never have thought it in her character) and that she would "soon be out on the randy again". That quote comes from my latter teens. It so disturbed me that I asked my then boyfriend if I should tell her. He said "Keep it to yourself". I'm glad I did.

The cancer? He shocked me when he said that the cancer was her own fault. I was in my mid-twenties and, with the help of my new found bravery from my faith (having stuck up for myself against him for the first time in my life, much to his annoyance), starting to realize that the male parent wasn't infallible. The shock of her actually developing it in the first place was frightening enough because my relationship with my mother was beginning to change. I had actually begun to look forward to a thawing, perhaps an understanding of why she disliked me so much (my beliefs at the time due to his influence). I was looking forwards to creating a meaningful PROPER mother-daughter relationship and I think she was too. I was very afraid and rightly so because she died a year and a half after the initial diagnosis. To hear something SO nasty and cruel from him stunned me and I think I can now look back and see a beginning there. At that point, though I was still confused by his attacks on my religion, I probably began to distrust him. I couldn't quite believe I was hearing that she deserved her cancer, that it was all her own fault, that she had brought it upon herself.

More later - have to do something.

Saturday, 8 September 2007

"Your mother just sees you as a toy"

I grew up believing that my mother did not want me or love me because the alienator told me so. I was an extraordinarily angry little girl and an even angrier teenager. He loved every single complaint about my mother that came out of my mouth. He rejoiced in them.

How sick in the head does a person have to be to be happy that their child believes themselves unwanted by their mother? He liked it. It's an insane thought: he was glad that I was miserable. This goes back to the objectification. He did not see me as a person, though he once told me that my mother did not see me as anything more than a toy. The irony! Even more ironic was the truth my mother once mentioned about a different matter entirely: you only think these poisonous thoughts about someone else if you've had them in the first place.

I have children and it breaks my heart to think that either of them could wonder if I love them. Because of my childhood experience, I have made sure every day of their lives that they know that I love them.

My living situation while I was growing up

I lived with my late mother. My sister and I saw our male parent every three weeks, on average, and spoke to him on the telephone once a week. My male parent is the alienator.

My case was unusual, wasn't it?

Normally the alienator is the mother and the alienated is the father, but not all cases are the same.

It still astounds me that he could do so much damage to my head when he wasn't even there most of the time!! I don't understand that and if someone can explain it, I'd love to hear.

What I think is most likely is that he got in there first: he began telling me that my mother didn't love me the minute she said she wanted a divorce ("Mummy doesn't love us anymore!"), and he kept it up. It was consistent and continuous and a barrage and always, ALWAYS at the back of my mind - for thirty years. Every time my mother said no to me or didn't do what I wanted, I believed it was because she did not love me or want me - because he said so. Without exception. I thought every single one of her NOs was because she didn't love me. Can you imagine growing up with that? Growing up in a house with a parent you thought didn't want you? I still believed this a year ago (now I'm just confused). I grew up thinking that she was cruel and deliberately nasty - because he said so.

He said that she only wanted me in the house to get her own back on him, to control me, to exert her power over me. He commonly said she had a "god complex" and was "a big fish in a small pond". He also told me about nearly every aspect of their divorce. He made me watch KRAMER VS KRAMER so I could compare him with Mr Kramer. If you haven't seen the movie, Mr Kramer is not treated well in the divorce and my male parent put himself in his position. At one point, the couple's son falls off a swing (?) at the park and hurts himself. Mr Kramer rushes him to hospital. The incident is brought up at the court case, Mr Kramer being yelled at for allowing the child to fall. I may have details wrong here, but I've got the general idea. He ranted at me after this scene. "Look how they've taken a tiny accident and blown it up into something major!" He was furious that, he felt, they were deliberately distorting the truth against Mr Kramer in order to make him look bad. "That's what they do!" he raged. I did not really understand what he was saying, other than that the truth was not being told about him. Now, it seems to me to have been a preemptive strike? Or making excuses?

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

Article by Marion Trent

A Look at Parent Alienation Syndrome
by Marion Trent
Divorce rates are climbing. Families are falling apart. Husbands are walking away from their responsibilities without blinking an eye. Mothers are killing their children without remorse. Ex-spouses are alienating sons and daughters from the other parent.
Sociopathy is a "personality disorder" and is characterized by a conspicuous disregard for the rights and needs of others. In the context of a familial environment this could very well begin with a perpetrator parent, who enjoys alienating a child from the victimized parent and is therefore engaging in the psychopathic style, or they could very well be a full-blown psychopath.
In broad strokes, let's assume a child is being alienated from the other parent and the child is required to be loyal to only one parent. The child will create false memories to secure the love of the perpetrator, since the other parent is "bad".
The child being stripped of their moral right to show love and compassion toward the alienated parent, will undoubtedly eventually create the psychopathic style in their own relationships in the very least-- if not, they may eventually become full-blown sociopaths themselves.
Many psychological problems will follow the child through adolescence and beyond. And many times, the perpetrators care very little about someone's psyche, even a child's.
It could very well be that the perpetrator is mimicking the style they were taught by their own parents and is not a true sociopath. Either way, it is just as damaging to the families that are involved during the alienation, and to those that will be affected when the child grows up without compassion for the other parent.
Parental Alienation Syndrome is running rampant. When engaging in PAS, parents are definitely creating the psychopathic style in their children.
Many of the perpetrators seem to be living a normal life, but underneath is a very undeveloped and emotionally stunted individual. Therefore, they may hide behind religious convictions without any regard for the child's psychological needs.
Children are being brainwashed, or told of relationship problems that existed (real or imagined) in the marriage. It is a grievous act against children to dump such information on them, but it is not a punishable crime and therefore the perpetrator gets away with it.
Is it not this behavior that perpetuates sociopathy and causes wars in our world today?
Please read "What does a severely alienated child look like?"
Why have we been so blind to this personality disorder and its style? How can we change it? How can we avoid the personality disorder in our children? How can we heal the psychopathic style in ourselves? And, why is it so difficult to connect the personality lacking a conscience to the word "Sociopath (Psychopath)"?
"The majority of psychopaths manage to ply their trade without murdering people. By focusing too much on the most brutal and newsworthy examples of their behavior, we run the risk of remaining blind to the larger picture: psychopaths who don't kill but who have a personal impact on our daily lives."

He will choose you, disarm you with his words, and control you with his presence.He will delight you with his wit and his plans. He will show you a good time, but you will always get the bill. He will smile and deceive you, and he will scare you with his eyes. And when he is through with you, and he will be through with you,he will desert you and take with him your innocence and your pride. You will be left much sadder but not a lot wiser, and for a long time you will wonder what happened and what you did wrong. And if another of his kind comes knocking at your door, will you open it?
From an essay signed, "A psychopath in prison." Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of Psychopaths Among Us. -Dr. Hare