Archive | 2010

Turning all phones off during the child’s birthdays, for Thanksgiving, Father’s Day, etc.

It’s been a rare holiday or birthday that I’ve been able to speak to my son. And never has my son initiated a call to me for these important dates– even Father’s Day.

Of course we know that kids aren’t generally aware of these dates and to reach out to loved ones, which is why they usually need a parent’s guidance. In a divorce, that means the parent with the child should help the child reach out to the other parent on these special days. However, a parent bent on minimizing or destroying the importance of their ex will place barricades up to keep the child from connecting to the other parent. It’s simply sick.

Recently on a big holiday, my son’s mother conveniently produced cell phone technical issues and the ridiculous “phone was being charged” argument. Nevermind that almost every phone can be used while it’s being charged.

This difficulty and sometimes outright inability for you to get through to your cute loved one(s) is a telltale sign of that parent’s hostility towards the child having a solid relationship with you. These parents brainwash their children on top of the gag on their child’s communications, and end up harming the child considerably.

One way to take the bull by the horns on this is to ask, preferably via text (so that it’s documented), a few days earlier when’s a good time to call on that day. If it becomes a recurring theme, then it’s time to contact your lawyer and consider a strongly worded letter for starters, up to a full blown hearing. Don’t let this parent get away with such awful behavior!

Think about what this teaches the child:

1. Important occasions don’t warrant even minimal telephone contact with the other parent

2. Ignoring the other parent on Father’s/Mother’s Day, a birthday, or Christmas is completely OK

3. Ignoring your siblings, uncles, and other relatives is also completely OK

It’s sad that parents routinely pull this ploy on their kid’s relationship to the other parent. It’s despicable.

Medical child abuse (Münchausen Syndrome by Proxy)

Medical Child Abuse

Most experts in child abuse aware that there’s three forms of abuse:

  • Mental/emotional
  • Physical
  • Sexual

However, what many aren’t aware of is one of the most DEADLY forms of child abuse:

Medical child abuse.

Its most common form, and only formally recognized form of medical abuse, is that of “Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy.” MSbP is a very serious — and often deadly– form of abuse whereby the parent, usually a mother, inflicts real or fake injuries and/or symptoms to her own child in order to gain attention or sympathy. (read this article for a primer on MSBP).

It’s deadly in that an estimated 10% of kids whose parent has MSbP dies as a result. In fact, it has been estimated by authorities on the subject that approximately 20% of children who are thought to have died due to SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) actually died from a parent with Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy.

In my case, the issue that really stands out is that my son’s mother is never, ever thrilled when batteries of tests come back negative or he recovers from his many “illnesses.” However, when talking about his ailments, many of which are severe, she goes into graphic detail. Yes, we’re talking about a mother that literally gets excited about pulling my son out of school (100 days the past 2.5 years) for medical testing, check-ups, surgeries, etc. However, when away from her, does my son continue to have these supposed illnesses?

Nope. They’re virtually nonexistent when he’s with me, his Daddy.

So when talking about child abuse, it’s important to understand that there are five kinds, not three. And they’re all simply intolerable, as they’re harming the most innocent of us!

  • Mental/emotional
  • Physical
  • Sexual
  • Medical
  • Educational

Brainwashing and custodial parents

Brainwashing by Custodial Parents

Brainwashed by Custodial Parent

Who has more inroads to damage a child psychologically, the parent with whom a child spends 85% of the time, or the other parent (also known as “noncustodial” parent)?

Clearly, the custodial parent has the most opportunity to brainwash, align, and otherwise create distortions and lies in a child’s mind. And because women are overwhelmingly awarded custodianship in divorces and paternity suits, the majority of emotional abusive parents are women (to be clear, this does not mean that fathers do not brainwash).

Living with the child nearly full time provides a lot of opportunity to shape a child mentally and emotionally. Custodial parents have a lot of bearing in their child’s upbringing due to this massive imbalance of time awarded them compared to the noncustodial parent. And this time can either be productive or destructive.

Which is why it’s important for courts in America to grant meaningful visitation to the noncustodial parents, especially if mental child abuse is alleged. But sadly the opposite often happens– one parent is actually denied the ability to seek counseling for an abused child.

So sadly, the parent with the most time with the child has the best opportunity to damage her own child psychologically… and if that’s happening to you, it’s time to get the court and CPS involved.

Munchausen by Proxy 101

Munchausen by ProxyWhat is Münchausen by Proxy Syndrome?

Münchausen by Proxy (origin of this name) is a severe form of deliberate child abuse, usually by mothers (over 90% are women according to one study), whereby the mother deliberately attempts to get her own child sick via falsified physical, physiological, and/or mental symptoms. This is done through exaggeration of symptoms, actual inducement of symptoms, or an outright lie about symptoms.

Why mothers will do this:

  1. To gain the attention and sympathy of the doctors and nurses
  2. Attempt to bring the mother closer to the child’s father
  3. They are depressed and insecure
  4. Absentee mother or father in their own childhood
  5. Desire to control their child
  6. Show their indispensability to the child’s welfare
  7. Restore family cohesiveness
  8. Limit or prevent the child from being with the father through onerous doctor visits

Why it’s such such a deadly syndrome:

  1. 9% of the children die
  2. extremely difficult to diagnose
  3. mothers rarely will admit to it and attend psychotherapy
  4. the abusive parent often seems caring, and is often in the medical profession herself

Children with MBPS:

  1. lots of illnesses in a short period of time
  2. frequent visits to doctors, hospitals, and health clinics
  3. illnesses cease to exist when child is away from the mother
  4. child doesn’t respond to treatment
  5. often assists the mother with deceiving the doctors

Mothers with MBPS:

  1. Often have the same symptoms as their own child
  2. Were abused themselves as children
  3. Often a bad relationship with the father of the child
  4. Often don’t know how the illness occurred
  5. Excellent manipulators; convincing
  6. Are “helicopter moms;” very controlling
  7. Enjoy the attention they receive from caring for their “injured” child
  8. Often are in the medical field themselves
  9. Are attention seekers

Notes:

  1. common for child to exhibit genuine symptoms
  2. exaggeration of symptoms
  3. often mothers are in the health care field themselves
  4. mother has personality disorders in all cases
  5. mother lashes out at any questioning of her motives or actions
  6. mother is usually the custodial parent and has the time to inflict the harm to the child
  7. constant office or hospital visits
  8. most mothers know what they’re doing, and hide their acts aggressively
  9. mother often is not happy when good news appears
  10. rare
  11. one of the most severe forms of child abuse because it can be deadly

Why it’s so hard to stop the harm to the child

  1. Difficult to diagnose or prove
  2. Takes varied forms
  3. Courts and lawyers know little to nothing about the disorder
  4. Child Protective Services (CPS) knows little to nothing about the disorder

The most important task is to protect children immediately from mothers with Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy. And that has to take place through the courts or Child Protective Services (CPS). Unfortunately, their task is made difficult by the difficulty to prove it, and even if it seems provable with lots of evidence, getting judges and child advocates to understand it.

Sadly, in the meantime the child suffers, and often dies.

Bottom line: the child needs to be removed from the abuse, which means the child must be removed from the abuser.


[Final comment]

Difference between Munchausen and Munchausen by Proxy:

Munchausen is faking your own illness
Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy is faking illness in your own children

Quote of the Week

Tragically, an ex consumed by revenge will gladly sabotage their child’s loving how you get pfizer viagra feelings with the inducement of false hatred.” – www.brainwashingchildren.com

Brainwashing grandmothers

Grandmothers who brainwash childrenA parent bent on destroying their own child’s relationship with the ex often have a family member quite willing to take part in the brainwashing…

The grandmother.

Over the years I’ve heard my son’s grandmother enough times to see first-hand how she’s hurting my son’s relationship with me. And I realize that what I’m hearing is only the tip of the iceberg, sadly.

Just a few weeks ago, during a long vacation, grandma tells my son halfway through (paraphrasing),

You’re on the downhill slide!

Translation: The sadness of having to spend time with the other, “lesser” parent- your father- is getting close to ending! Then you’ll be back with us and away from the monster…

Another thing she said that showed how selfish she was during one summer saying to him on the telephone how many hours until she sees him again (I can’t remember the exact number, but it was in the hundreds). And for about 5 minutes prior to that, she asked him nothing about what he was doing (we were out of the state on a trip to the lake). She went on about all the things he was missing back home! Learning absolutely nothing about her grandson’s exciting trip to a large lake…

In many families, the grandmother is the dominant figure in the entire family tree. Which is perfectly fine. But when the grandmother uses her power to aid (or in my situation, lead) the effort to sabotage her grandson or granddaughter’s relationship with his or her own parent, it’s downright despicable.

[Now, this is not to say that grandfathers don’t brainwash children. They can and do. But the reality is that in the vast majority of cases, it’s the grandmother who’s highly emotionally vested in the grandchildren, and as such if they feel aggrieved by a child’s ex-wife or ex-husband, many will go to many lengths to harm that person.]

In the process, of course, hurting not just that ex but a child or children as well.

So, how do you combat a grandmother’s actions that are harming your relationship to you son or daughter?

First, start documenting all comments, texts, voice mail messages, and actions. I use Google Docs for all my notes on the evidence of my son’s brainwashing. Then, once you have this evidence hire a lawyer and see about calling a hearing about this abuse. Now, don’t get your hopes up about the judge taking assertive action. Most family law judges are clueless about PAS*. In my case, the judge to this day has done absolutely nothing to warn the mother despite audio and video evidence, and my testimony on the stand. But you still need to make this effort– wouldn’t you like to know your father or mother held a court hearing over the mental brainwashing that was occurring while you were a child? Show some initiative that sadly too many parents lack.

Secondly, place your child into therapy with a child therapist well versed in *Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS).  This will help your child immensely in the recovery efforts. Having a neutral third party talking to the child about you can do a lot of good.

Third, and I’ll write about this soon as a separate topic, enlist the help of a person who your son or daughter really likes or loves. With some well-timed words talking about you (the targeted parent), and sharing their feelings about you, your child will now have in front of them a huge disconnect: between what they’ve been hearing about you by the brainwashing parent and grandparent for years, and what they’re hearing now from this trusted, liked person.

Last, I highly recommend the book Divorce Poison by Dr. Richard Warshak (order here). He just came out with an updated edition, and it’s terrific. It’s essentially the Bible on Brainwashing.

Don’t just think that brainwashing of children is done by parents. It’s done by grandparents too– and this double-barreled assault on the child and his or her relationship to you can be brutally effective in destroying the child’s opinions, attitudes, and feelings…

Quote of the Week

Cauldron of hatred

Cauldron of hatred

Although some brainwashing parents may avoid conflict with you, inside they’re often a boiling cauldron of hatred and hostility. – www.brainwashingchildren.com