Hostile Aggressive Parents
Most children want good relationships between their parents and with
their parents - whether biological or adoptive. This is important in happy families,
and even more important during separation, divorce or other crisis.
Hostile or aggressive parenting is child abuse!
Hostile aggressive parents interfere with the relationship of a child with
the other parent or with a guardian. Such interference could include using
emotional blackmail, manipulation, or disabling communication between
a child and the alienated parent.
Hostile-aggressive parenting can apply to any adult who cares for any child.
Interfering with a healthy relationship between a child
and a parent or guardian can harm a child. Family
court systems around the world have no standard definitions or criteria to
guide lawyers and judges as to which parenting behaviors should be regarded
as child abuse or maltreatment.
Hostile-aggressive parenting is common. Does anyone you know:
- make children change their surnames?
- criticize a parent in the presence of the child?
- encourage a child to defy an alienated parent?
- manipulate a child's feelings of guilt and sympathy?
- use a child as a weapon against an alienated parent?
- instruct a child to not communicate with an
- claim falsely that a child does not want to speak to an
When Parents Hate Each Other
Hostile-Aggressive Parenting (HAP) is a form of child abuse that we
most often see in people who try to control or bully others. It
can be a factor in all types of parenting, including sole
custody and joint custody.
Common ways to interfere with
parent/child access are:
- claiming that a child is ill
- ensuring that a child is unavailable
- scheduling activities during the alienated parentís time
- raising concerns about the alienated parentís ability
to care for a child,
Hostile aggressive parenting and parental alienation manipulates children into distrusting
or disliking a parent or guardian. Abusers often claim that
they are trying to protect a child from the alienated parent. They may also:
- Describe the alienated parent as an abuser
- Perceive the alienated parent as altogether bad
- Tell children information that they cannot assimilate
- Blame the alienated parent for children's health issues
- Instruct or encourage a child to call the other parent by a 'bad' name
A parent who incites a child to hate the other parent is guilty of
Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) - a child is abused to
give an adult an advantage. Children of hostile, aggressive parents
may later suffer from chronic anger, anxiety or depression.
Some consequences are immediate, and some delayed for years. Later in life
many abused people experience unpleasant emotions from such damage. Common
chronic conflict and
Parents who hurt children may also feel a diminished relationship with their
community and a diminished sense of life (it seems to be equally true for
agnostics and atheists.)
We help partners prevent
Aggressive parenting is not gender-based - both fathers and
mothers play this terrible game that everybody loses!
My Child Hates Me!
If a child rejects a parent, both the family and the
community (and courts) often respond
emotionally, usually to support the weaker parent, regardless of any
manipulation used to incite the child's rejection or to make a
partner seem somehow bad.
In extreme cases, a child victim of hostile parenting
may commit abuse and violence against the alienated parent ... or suicide.
Affected children may verbally attack or physically or abuse the alienated
parents - or themselves.
Who Gets Hurt?
Children are sensitive to family relationships but may
be unable to communicate their observations with adult language, and they may be ignored
or ridiculed if they try. Such children more often communicate with symptoms.
- A child may be guided by family or community to reject their parents
- A child may be manipulated by a parent who wants to punish the other
- Adopted children may
be encouraged to dislike or reject their birth parents
- A child may be simultaneously manipulated
by both parents to reject each other
A child who rejects a parent, the rejected parent and
the manipulative parent all risk severe emotional consequences. Children's
suffering is often ignored - the parents may feel that they have better things
to do than to love for their children in healthy ways.
If hostile aggressive parenting includes covert emotional incest, emotionally entangled children may later suffer predictable partnership and sexual problems.
Parental alienation often concerns separation and custody of children.
However, most families, communities and courts seem to support biological
mothers and deny support or custody to biological or substitute fathers,
regardless of facts.
In any case, children are rarely represented by
Either parent can initiate parental alienation.
- A custodial parent of pre-adolescent children
rejects the partner
- The children must show loyalty to that parent
by rejecting their other parent
- The custodial parent tells the children what
lies they must tell
- The children support their custodial parent and reject their other parent
- The rejection of the other parent may include lies and false
Sequence of Parental Alienation Syndrome
Immature parents may express their
depression or aggression by withholding love.
- The parents experience
a crisis that they cannot resolve
- Instead of getting help, they become
entangled in their crisis
- One or both parents neglect the consequences
of the crisis on their children
- One parent consciously rejects the partner's
behavior, beliefs and / or values
- A parent rejects the partner's qualities
in the child (e.g. don't act like your father!)
- The child hides qualities similar
to those of the rejected parent
- The child identifies with the rejecting parent,
who is often perceived as a victim
- The child dislikes and represses the dangerous
qualities of the rejected parent
- The child dislikes people who have similar qualities
to the rejected parent
- The child rejects the rejected parent
- privately or publicly
Many children suffer from the sometimes vicious tactics
that immature parents use to hurt each other. Alienating a child's
parent is child abuse. Contact us to manage your emotions and solve relationship
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