Divorces for Texas couples can be very difficult when there are children involved. Even if children had healthy relationships with both of their parents before a divorce, it is very common for them to takes sides and reject one parent after a divorce. This phenomenon, known as ‘parental alienation,” is difficult to identify and treat. Often, a child’s negative feelings about one parent are the result of the other parent’s influence.
There have been claims of parental alienation in one custody case in Michigan involving a divorced couple with three children. In July, the case drew nationwide attention when a judge sentenced the children, ages 9, 11 and 14, to spend time in juvenile detention because they refused to see their father. The children were then ordered to complete ‘reunification therapy” treatment for five days.
Reunification therapy is a controversial treatment for children and alienated parents. Proponents of the treatment say that it is necessary to heal relationships between children and their parents. However, some psychotherapists are against court-ordered reunification therapy treatments because they say that they traumatize children and force them to spend time with a parent that may have been abusive towards them.
A parent whose marriage is ending may want to be represented by an attorney while child custody decisions are being made. When two divorcing parents do not communicate effectively with each other, it is very important for the judge to have a clear understanding of the facts in the case. An attorney may be able to help a divorcing parent to make sure that the judge understands the relationship dynamics among all parties involved.