> No More Secrets And Lies: Parental Alienation During the Holidays

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Parental Alienation During the Holidays

Pioneer Cemetery University of Oregon

The Pioneer Cemetery is located on the east side of the Knight library in the middle of the University of Oregon campus. Today it sits outside the window I found while looking for a place to sip my coffee, read, and do some writing. With its rows of century-old gravestones claiming space next to tall Douglas firs, it’s snow-covered road trailing off and away to an infinite landscape, it makes a pleasant backdrop upon which to gaze as I read, write, and think about the move I recently made and the children I left behind.

And all of it makes a particularly apt metaphor for someone who's particularly apt at finding meaning during this time of year especially when the world seems distant, cold, and lonely as it often does to parents of Parental Alienation (PA) who are apart from their children during the holidays.

We PA parents struggle especially hard this time of the year to try and make up for our loss by pretending it’s not a loss, by pretending it’s a strengthening exercise, or by reaching out to others on the internet and elsewhere who have also lost children to the misguided bitterness of a ex-spouse bent on destroying the relationship between a child and a parent.

But sometimes the depths of the holiday void can be too much, sometimes we expect a whole lot more, and sometimes our rationalizations deliver less than we expect. And it's at times like these when comments like "Hang in there," "Don't give up," or "I’ll pray for you" – all from kind souls who mean well – are seen as meaningless pabulum, slaps to the face, and failures to acknowledge our all-too-important pain and brush it aside as little more than meaningless family-related trivia – something we may tolerate at any other time of the year but can't now when our emotions are extra raw, as they are during the holidays.

A kind woman from the UK recently sent out a tweet to her parental alienation followers something to the effect of, "Never Give Up," to which I replied "Give up what? What are we supposed to keep doing?" 

I asked this because nothing I’m doing now is making any difference and I’m sick and tired of going on another three years of never seeing my daughters: children I dearly love, children who used to love me, but children who never want me in their lives again.

I wasn't intending to be rude. Lord knows I wouldn't to someone who has suffered as I have. But I wanted answers, for God’s sake. I want something concrete, not flimsy and fluffy. Give me something solid and stable I can use to get my daughters back or don’t give me anything at all, was what my inner self was saying even though my outer self couldn't say it quite like that.

Her reply to me was to "Not Give up Hope." That's what we're supposed to keep doing – hoping. Which is fine. But only fine, and not the kind of answer I was looking for. Not an answer for someone who only wants to see their children, especially during the holidays.

But she meant well. Bless her soul. And she cared, and I thank God for that. And I realize my emotions are extra raw during this time of the year. But I also know that I can no longer listen to well-intentioned sayings while my girls and I drift further and further apart, especially during the holidays.

And so I took another sip of my coffee, turned another page in my notebook, and looking back out the window at the snow-covered ground and the tombstones sunk into the ground below, I began to think that maybe the deaths I'm aware of and see and feel are commingled with a vista of treetops reaching for the sky and the clear blue heavens completing a circle that tells me that maybe there is a new beginning after all.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all parental alienation parents. Hang in there. I'm praying for you.


Tim Line said...

Very well written. It certainly hits a spot.....unfortunately :(

John Brosnan said...

Thanks for the comment Tim. I wish you the best of luck.

http://fathers4children.com/?page_id=1013 said...

Q. "Give up what? What are we supposed to keep doing?"
A. Nothing that anyone else has done before, since in 40 years it has not solved the problem for you and all other fathers, and our sons and their sons and their sons. As long as police come to the door you are at when asking to see your child, and tells you to leave or be arrested. http://fathers4children.com/?page_id=1013

Act of Courage said...

Purpose of Why Dad's Matter:

Why Dad's Matter (WDM) is formed to accomplish legislative changes to remedy the current disenfranchisement of fathers and dad's in the current legal systems, courts, mainstream media and educational entities in our nation today. WDM also attempts to provide additional links to resources to help dad's be better dad's and support as Glen describes below. We discovered after years of torment in this horrible system that we were not an isolated case but there are hundreds and thousands subjected to the same torment; further verifying the enormous scope of the problem; we believe the scope of this disenfranchisement and Parental Alienation justifies legislative changes. WHY DAD'S MATTER By Glen Gibellina SARASOTA, FL. 2013 - Mission Statement: Why Dad's Matter was created as a means by which dads can gain parenting skills, network with other fathers, receive free education on topics specific to men and be connected to community resources. Why Dad's Matter has brought together a broad spectrum of men of all professions and ages, all of whom are committed to being successful, nurturing Dads. Thanks to this common goal no one has ever felt like a stranger; the friendships are immediate and the camaraderie sincere for both fathers and children alike. WHY DAD'S MATTER consists of three components: Support, Education and Male Involvement. These three components work in conjunction with each other to provide a wealth of knowledge and a platform for father/child interaction. Support: WHY DAD'S MATTER has partnered with the several organizations so that our participants have a nurturing environment where they can share their experiences, hear valuable information from experts and learn effective parenting techniques. Male Involvement: This will be the opportunity for the group to have fun with their children! Through games, field trips, sporting events, etc., the dads will enjoy spending quality time with their child/children while strengthening their paternal bonds and building memories that will last a lifetime. Education: There will be free, male-centered, educational sessions held regularly for men only to discuss topics such as: male sterilization, child support/custody, infant/child safety, mental health services and appropriate child discipline. WHY DAD'S MATTER gives dads the tools they need to connect with their kids and develop healthy relationships. Through educational parenting resources, we help men understand the valuable role they have and give them the parenting skills needed to provide a safe and healthy environment for their children. We are a group of dedicated Dad's who care about the upbringing of our children in the community. We have lined up the best of best in Dad's along with Families without Dad's THAT'S WHY DAD'S MATTER Why Dads Matter Back to top

StarzDream said...

Parental Alienation is NOT a FATHER victim act!!!!!!!! PA is cruel and both Mom and Dads are victims to it and both Mom and Dads do it! PA/PAS needs criminilized in every state, every country for every Alienating Criminal

StarzDream said...

Dads do matter!!!! But Moms bring the child intro the world and the dads don't even know our have a say about it until the child arrives........a Dad basically can do nothing until the child its given breath.....Unfortunately,Mothers choice. A Dad can,or cannot choose to participate. A Mother HAS no choice, ......think about THAT!

Post a Comment