From Heartbreak to Healing is a comprehensive introduction to a common but often unrecognizes family dynamic called parental alienation, which is a serious form of both child and spouse abuse that occurs when one parent turns their child against the other parent for no justified reason—often during divorce or separation. It is a serious form of both child and spouse abuse that occurs throughout the world.
This go-to book for parents who do not know what to do when their child rejects them, is based on the author’s personal experience as an alienated parent years before the experience had a name. It reveals her story and how she healed her own grief, summarizes her research of the literature on this new field of parental alienation, and shares the results of the author’s nation-wide survey to interview other rejected parents firsthand about their experience of alienation. Topics include:
What parental alienation is and how it works
Who teaches their child to reject the other parent and why
Stories of other alienated parents
How to find and screen parental alienation-qualified professionals
What works to resolve alienated relationships
Next steps YOU can take to help erase and prevent parental alienation
As a recommended resource on the International Parental Alienation Sudy Group website, this book is an excellent resource for social, legal, and mental health professions who want to understand and provide best practices to families suffering from parental alienation.
Cara is the author of the book, From Heartbreak to Healing: Resolving Parental Alienation
After 43 years as an alienated parent with a professional background in child development and family relationships where she managed child development programs serving working parents and their children, plus a doctorate in children’s [innate]spirituality, she finds answers to her questions: “Why me? How did this happen? and What is the purpose?”
Through a process of deep introspection, she overcame decades of depression, despite remaining unreconciled with her son. She has now discovered resources, formerly unavailable, that could have led to a different outcome.
There are eight symptoms researchers have consistently found in children who have been emotionally manipulated to reject a parent for no good cause. The presence of at least two or more of these symptoms is a red flag:
1.Campaign of Denigration: The child continually complains about the target parent, with frivolous complaints that often echo complaints of the alienator.
2. Weak, Frivolous, absurd rationalizations to justify hostility: for example, "I don't like you because you make me do the dishes."
3. Lack of Ambivalence: Sees one parent as perfect; the other as all bad.
4. Independent Thinker: Defensively denies being influenced by anyone else regarding their rejection of their parent.
5. Absence of Guilt regarding their rude, insensitive treatment of the target parent: Acts as if whatever he can get from the target parent is owed him.
6. Reflexive Support for the Alienating Parent in Parental Conflict: No matter how irrational, always sides with the alienating parent.
7. Presence of Borrowed Scenarios: accusations against target parent include phrases, language and ideas of the alienating parent.
8. Rejection of the Extended Family: Rejection extends to the extended family/friends of the target parent and can even include pets.
It is important to have a full family assessment by mental health professionals TRAINED AND EXPERIENCED to diagnose parental alienation.
From Heartbreak to Healing
The second core element of alienation is whether there is significantmental disturbance in the child, which is determined by identifying specific symptoms in the child