I think most of us will agree that divorce is disappointing.
Yet, even in the midst of difficult, even traumatic circumstances like these, many folks are able to lay their personal feelings, assume responsibility for the behaviors and circumstances leading up to the divorce, and work together to craft a separation that makes the best out of a bad situation for all parties involved – and these folks that are able to treat other professionally, even if they don’t like the other party, deserve our admiration and respect.
And then there are the others – the selfish ones.
It’s certainly not uncommon to feel hurt, angry, and hateful toward your estranged spouse in a divorce matter, and there are probably good reasons for both parties to feel that way.
You are after all, suing each other; leveling blame and dividing up ownership of marital assets and debts while trying to establish a new life for yourself, that is hopefully, relatively free of the presence of the person you want to be rid of.
Money and assets are easy enough to divide up. The problem arises when children are involved, because once the Family Court process gets rolling, it soon becomes apparent that divorcing parents must remain cooperative, responsible, and accountable to each other – and for some, this is conflicts with their desire to put themselves first.
One cannot simply pick-up and move the children without the consent of the other parent. Decisions regarding schooling, health care, extra curricular activities, religion, and the day-to-day activities of the children must still be arrived at cooperatively, and visitation schedules must be adhered to unless both parents agree to deviations from it.
And this presents a problem for those who value their personal freedoms more than they value the welfare of their children – This is a problem for self-centered parents.
And It’s The Children Who Truly Suffer
As you’ll see in the alienating and accusing profiles page, alienating parents tend to exhibit psychological markers of narcissism, control, and impulsiveness.
In other words, for self-centered parents, it’s all about them, and then tend to lack the ability to see and feel perspectives other than their own; which includes their own children.
When a family is torn apart, it’s difficult enough for children cope. In fact, it can be downright terrifying for them.
And numerous studies have shown that when one parent mindfully works to further damage or terminate the relationship of the children with the other parent, the psychological damage is often long-term and devastating.
In fact, its been statistically shown that children suffering the effects of Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) suffer above average rates of:
- Self-esteem and self-confidence issues
- Anger management problems
- Separation anxiety
- Sleeping and eating disorders
- Drug and alcohol abuse
- Self-hating behaviors
- Obsessive compulsive disorders
- Adverse run-in’s with the Law
- Suicidal thoughts and behaviors
Note: for a pretty decent summary of the issue, please see the following article: The Effects of PAS on Children, Notalldadsaredeadbeats.com, as well as those indexed under the links to the right)
Why Would Anyone Hurt A Child, Especially Their Own?
I’m sorry to say, the answer to this is pretty straightforward:
First, self-centered parents believe they are a superior parent and that the other parent is not needed.
Secondly, they recognize that joint custody and decision-making will restrict their personal freedoms – they cannot simply do what they want. And for and self-centered parents, this is unacceptable.
And thirdly, there is a financial incentive for self-centered parents to limit or eliminate your time with children. Because child support is not only a function of annual income sharing, but can also be determined by the custody hours awarded to each parent – the less time you spend with your kids, the more money they make.