Parental Alienation Issues In Michigan Divorce
The emotional drain of a divorce multiplies when it involves minor children. You, the adult, contemplate starting a new and unexpected life with possible financial challenges. At the same time, you, the parent, face the painful reality of what may be a dramatically changing relationship with your child or children. Michigan courts expect divorcing parents to work together respectfully to co-parent in the child’s best interests. But what do you do if you believe the other parent is not trying to co-parent, or worse, is actively trying to interfere with or even end your relationship with that child? Or if that parent has accused you of doing so? Protect your rights and the rights and safety of your child by reaching out immediately to an expert attorney to learn more.
What Is Parental Alienation In Michigan?
The effort by one parent to alienate or remove a child from the other parent can be subtle and difficult to prove. Behaviors that Michigan courts look at include:
- Portraying the other parent to the child as unsafe, unloving, “bad,” or responsible for the divorce or post-divorce issues
- Undermining the authority of the other parent
- Interfering with contact and communication between the child and the other parent
- Trying to erase the child’s feelings for the other parent or replace the other parent in the child’s mind
- Encouraging the child to “report” on the other parent or betray the other parent’s trust
How Do I Know Alienation Is Happening?
Divorce will change the parent-child relationship. Most likely, you will not see your child every day. You may not talk as much when the child is with the other parent. Your child may be sadder or moodier because of the changes. How will you know if the difference is “normal” or if it is a sign that the other parent is turning your child against you? Alienation can take many forms – some subtle and some obvious, for example:
- Your child suddenly knows personal details about your past that make you look bad in their eyes.
- The other parent makes it difficult for you to get information about medical, educational, or extracurricular schedules.
- The other parent shares details of divorce proceedings with the child in a way to paint you as the bad person or the person to blame.
- The other parent accuses you, often to the child, of some form of abuse and encourages the child to blame you as well.
- The other parent finds reasons to cancel or shorten your time with the child or schedules activities for the child during that time.
These are just a few examples of behaviors that can combine to damage your child’s mind and destroy your relationship. If you sense that your child is being manipulated to push you out of their life, or if you believe you are being falsely accused of abuse, taking immediate steps to address the issue is imperative.
What If I Am Being Falsely Accused Of Alienation?
While alienation in divorce does occur and can be incredibly damaging to the child, custody and visitation disputes can also lead to false allegations of abuse and alienation. Alienation accusations require the court to decide which party’s version of intentions, words, and actions are most accurate. This makes the issue of alienation incredibly frightening and challenging to navigate, no matter whether you are the victim or falsely accused.
Michigan Family Law Attorney
Protect your future by working with an attorney experienced in alienation issues which will vigorously defend your rights and advocate on your behalf. Call Law Offices of Ravi R. Gurumurthy, PLC at (231) 577-1580 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.