What to Know About Parental Alienation in New York

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When children are little, they believe their parents can do no wrong. But, parents are people too, and they can make mistakes. When a couple with children gets divorced, emotions often run high. This becomes difficult when children are involved. Sometimes, after a messy divorce, parents will attempt to turn their children against their ex-spouse. This behavior is known as parental alienation.

What is Parental Alienation?

Parental alienation occurs when one parent interferes with the other’s ability to spend time with and parent their children. This is most typically conducted by the custodial parent, and can involve telling the children negative things about the other parent and making concrete efforts to limit the other parent’s ability to see and spend time with their children. Sometimes this behavior includes making passive verbal comments, and other times it involves outright manipulation. This behavior has been known to lead to childhood trauma and can severely impact a child’s relationship with both parents.

How Can I Prove Parental Alienation?

Parental alienation can be difficult to see. Sometimes, you may not be aware it is occurring. Some signs to look out for are changes in your child’s behavior. For example, children affected by parental alienation may become violent or distant when interacting with the targeted parent. Additionally, if the custodial parent makes disparaging posts on social media, or sends angry texts, it is important to screenshot these things.

What Can I Do About Parental Alienation?

The topic of parental alienation can be highly controversial. This is because it can be difficult to prove, making it especially difficult to use as a defense in court. That being said, judges may recognize this form of abuse if the marriage between two individuals was especially toxic. As a result, a judge may rule to modify your custody agreement. A New York court may rule to limit the other parent’s time with the child. By engaging in parental alienation, your ex may be violating the core of your child custody agreement, which is to do what is in the child’s best interest.

If you believe you and your child are victims of parental alienation, contact our firm today to speak with an experienced family law attorney.


Peter V. Mandi, Esq. is an experienced divorce and family law attorney located in Bohemia, New York. Our firm understands the impact a divorce can have on your life. If you require strong and dedicated legal representation in Long Island, New York, please do not hesitate to contact Peter V. Mandi & Associates, Inc. today.

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