Archive for the ‘coping’ Category

Alienated parents champions, not victims

Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

If you’ve read A Family’s Heartbreak: A Parent’s Introduction to Parental Alienation, you probably remember that we consider driving a car one of those simple daily activities that can turn an alienated parent’s day upside down. 

For most people, driving a car is a way to go from Point A to Point B. But alienated parents have their eyes on the road and their brains in the past. The longer the drive, the more an alienated parent’s thoughts can drift back to the relationship that was wrongfully stolen away. By the time an alienated parent arrives at his or her destination the anger, sadness, hopelessness, frustration and unfairness of parental alienation can potentially turn the parent’s mood and outlook from sunny and bright to dark and bleak.

Yesterday I was driving and thinking about my alienated son. Another year has passed without any change in our relationship. But before I could take that destructive stroll down parental alienation memory lane, We are the Champions by Queen, came on the radio. For the first time I listened to the lyrics not as an anthem for a championship team, but as an anthem for alienated parents:

I’ve paid my dues
Time after time
I’ve done my sentence
But committed no crime
And bad mistakes
I’ve made a few
I’ve had my share of sand kicked in my face
But I’ve come through
 
We are the champions, my friends
And we’ll keep on fighting – till the end
We are the champions
We are the champions
No time for losers
Cause we are the champions – of the world.

Alienated parents are champions, not victims. Keep on fighting for your alienated children. You are the champions of parental alienation and the world.

Happy holidays from A Family’s Heartbreak, LLC.

A holiday shopping list for alienated parents

Wednesday, December 15th, 2010

There are only ten days left before Christmas. Still shopping? 

If you are an alienated parent struggling to find gifts for the people in your life you’ve come to the right place. The following gifts are affordable and don’t require shipping. As an added service, we’ve even matched the best gifts to the most deserving recipients.

Forgiveness — for the alienating parent.

Tolerance — for parental alienation critics.

Knowledge — for legal and mental health professionals who don’t understand alienation.

Respect — for people trying to make sense of a situation that doesn’t make sense.

Understanding — for friends who don’t know what to say.

Empathy and Support — for other people struggling with parental alienation.

Charity — for non-profit organizations working on the behalf of alienated parents and children.

Patience — for parents, grandparents, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles and cousins. They’re hurting too.

Attention — for your spouse or significant other. Don’t take him or her for granted.

Unconditional Love — for your alienated children. They are hurting just as much as you are.

A Good Example — for your non-alienated children.

A Break — for yourself. Parental alienation is not a referendum on you or your parenting. You don’t deserve parental alienation. Neither does your children.

Hope — for yourself and your children. Keep hoping. Keep trying. Anyone can give up, it’s easy to do. But to hold it together when everyone would understand if you fell apart, that’s hope.

Support the PAAO this holiday season

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

In difficult economic times the non-profit organizations are hit the hardest. Big donors donate less, and the casual donors often can’t afford to donate anything at all.

The  Parental Alienation Awareness Organization (PAAO) helps alienated parents get through the holidays with empathy and support. The PAAO is also focused on the future, and is busy creating programs for 2011 and beyond that will raise awareness of parental alienation and help other families avoid the pain and heartbreak of this destructive family dynamic.

A Family’s Heartbreak LLC. is hoping you will include the PAAO in your holiday giving plans this year. A $20 donation will help the PAAO move forward with its advocacy initiatives. Can you please make a donation today? You can donate at https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=LMKVCH5MJQN5U.

Accept the gift of support this holiday season

Sunday, November 28th, 2010

The holidays are an especially difficult time for alienated parents. Despite all the holiday cheer, alienated parents can’t help but focus on the children who won’t visit, call or say thank you for a gift. In these emotionally challenging times, support from other parents who understand the pain and heartbreak of parental alienation is especially important.

Two online Yahoo groups, PASParents and Parents Against Parental Alienation (PAPA), provide alienated parents with a virtual community of support and empathy. There are also countless Facebook groups devoted to parental alienation support. Yet for some parents, nothing takes the place of old fashioned face-to-face communication with people who have walked in their shoes. There are some face-to-face parental alienation support groups listed on the Resources page of this site.

If you don’t have a parental alienation support group in your area and would like to start one, here are a few tips we believe you’ll find useful:

  1. Attracting Members — You want to attract people with shared experiences and a common goal. A good way to do this is to advertise your group’s purpose in a local newspaper, public place, or on a local Internet site. Many radio and television stations will run community service commercials for free during non-peak listening and viewing times. The goal is to attract people who share similar parental alienation experiences.
  2. Screening Potential Members — It is important to make sure participants are appropriate for the group. A short interview where you review the group’ goals and ask the individual questions about his or her expectations of the group process should help you decide if the person is a good fit.
  3. Setting up the Group — A good size for a group is between 10 and 15 people. At this size everyone should have an opportunity to participate in a 60 or 90 minute session.
  4. Establishing Rules — Who talks when? Any topic off limits? What is the procedure for asking someone to leave the group? While you can’t possibly address every potential scenario in advance, it is important to establish group rules up front and clearly communicate the rules to all members before the first session.
  5. Selecting a Moderator — You may have started your group, but you may not be the best person to act as moderator. An effective group will need someone who is a skilled facilitator. The moderator is the person to enforce group rules objectively, keep everyone moving in the right direction, manage the time, and make sure all group members have a chance to benefit. The moderator should also be a little detached from the rest of the group — someone who has accepted and moved on from the initial pain of his or her situation and can keep the focus on members who need lots of support, empathy or suggestions. 
  6. Building in Feedback Mechanisms — Feedback mechanisms are essential for improving the group process and ensuring the best possible outcomes. Whether the feedback consists of periodic informal conversations or an anonymous survey, be sure to have a process in place so group members can share their perspectives on how things are going and you can determine whether or not the group is meeting its goals.
  7. Notifying A Family’s Heartbreak.com — Once you form your group, be sure to let us know so we can add it to the Resources page of this site.

Mike & Mike on the radio

Monday, November 15th, 2010

Mike Jeffries, author of A Family’s Heartbreak: A Parent’s Introduction to Parental Alienation, will be the guest host on the internet radio program Family Matters on Wednesday, November 17 at 7:00 p.m. EST. Jeffries’ guest will be Dr. J. Michael Bone, parental alienation expert and consultant.

Family Matters is a show dedicated to discussing parental alienation, a destructive family dynamic affecting countless children, parents and extended family members every year.

“I’m looking forward to asking Dr. Bone about many of the developments he has seen over the years with respect to how parental alienation is perceived in the courts and among mental health professionals,” Jeffries said. “His article,  Parental Alienation Syndrome: How to Detect It and What to Do About It was one of the earliest and most concise, easy-to-understand descriptions of what I was going through with my family.”

Jeffries is sitting in for regular host, author and Parental Alienation Awareness Organization President Jill Egizii. “I’m used to being interviewed, so it will be fun to ask the questions for a change,” he added.

Family Matters can be heard at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/syndicatednews/2010/11/18/family-matters–hosted-by-michael-jeffries-author-. The call-in phone number is 347-539-5024.

Raising awareness of alienation at the AACAP

Saturday, October 30th, 2010

Parental alienation professionals and advocates attended the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) annual meeting in New York City this week to discuss alienation with many of the 4,700 psychiatrists and physicians in attendence and explain why parental alienation belongs in the next edition of the profession’s DSM.

Dr.William Bernet, a professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and the primary author of Parental Alienation DSM-5 and ICD-11, presented at the meeting and the Parental Alienation Awareness Organization (PAAO) raised awareness of alienation in an exhibit hall booth. The PAAO exhibit featured books, DVDs and volunteers to discuss parental alienation with conference attendees. PAAO President Jill Egizii, PAAO Vice President Robert Samery, Dr. Amy Baker, and Mike Jeffries, author of A Family’s Heartbreak: A Parent’s Introduction to Parental Alienation, were all on hand to pass out literature and talk about alienation with mental health professionals from around the world.

Also attending the conference were members of the DSM Review Board — the professionals who will decide whether or not parental alienation is included in the next edition of the DSM. Bernet indicated that the Review Board is still considering alienation for inclusion in the updated diagnostic manual. The DSM-5 is scheduled for release in 2013.

Jeffries observed that while some professionals had never heard of alienation, many others were familiar with the family dynamic. Still other professionals saw alienation in their practices without realizing the behaviors had a name. “The conversations were all over the map,” Jeffries said. “Some attendees wanted to talk about their cases. Other professionals wanted to discuss under what category the DSM-5 could potentially list parental alienation. One psychiatrist was even looking for guidance on who should receive the diagnostic code — the alienating parent, the targeted parent, or the child.”

Not every person who stopped by the PAAO booth wanted to see parental alienation in the DSM-5. “There was one psychiatrist who made it clear he didn’t believe in parental alieantion but he never actually completed a sentence or allowed me to complete one,” Jeffries said. “He said ‘parental alienation is a diagnosis in search of a…’ and then his voice trailed off. When I tried to say something positive, he cut me off with another incomplete, negative comment. Then he did it a third time. I finally told him to enjoy the rest of the conference. With 4,700 open-minded, articulate professionals to talk to there was no need to waste time on him.”

Television no place to address parental alienation

Thursday, September 9th, 2010

Wanted: Popular television program seeks one parental alienation family — including alienating parent, targeted parent and alienated child — to reunite in front of a national television audience. No experience necessary. Dramatic presentation skills preferred. Responsibilities include condensing years of acrimony and mistrust into easy-to-understand sound bites that fit between commercials, following the advice of a person you’ve just met, and participating in post-show counseling that Courts have previously ordered and you’ve avoided. Compensation is non-existent, travel expenses are paid. To apply contact The Dr. Phil Show. 

Yes, The Dr. Phil Show is doing another show on parental alienation and Dr. Phil’s producers are frantically searching for a parental alienation family willing to appear on the program. While many targeted parents want to believe that Dr. Phil can reunite them with their children after the Courts, family members, friends and full-time mental health professionals couldn’t, Mike Jeffries, author of A Family’s Heartbreak: A Parent’s Introduction to Parental Alienation, uses his latest Basil & Spice blog at http://www.basilandspice.com/love-and-relationships/category/jeffries-mike to point out that television can’t script a happily-ever-after ending to parental alienation.

Mr. Jeffries goes to Washington

Friday, July 9th, 2010

Mike Jeffries, author of A Family’s Heartbreak: A Parent’s Introduction to Parental Alienation, will talk about surviving parental alienation later this month at two family-focused events in Washington D.C. 

Jeffries will first address participants of the D.C. Family Preservation Rally Fest 2010 on Saturday, July 23 at 1:00 p.m. Jeffries will then move over to the Family Preservation Festival. The author’s appearance at the second event is scheduled for 3:o0 p.m. the same day.

Both events are located within walking distance of each other in downtown Washington D.C. The Rally Fest 2010 event is at the beginning of the National Mall between the Capital and the Capital Reflecting Pool. The Fesitival is in Upper Senate Park. 

“I am thrilled to address both groups because everyone involved in these events are dedicated to raising the visibility of parental alienation,” Jeffries said. “In addition, many of the participants are alienated parents who would much rather be spending the summer weekend with their children. We hope we can help them deal with their status as targeted parents so they will be ready when their children reach out to them.”

Jeffries will also be at Cosi Restaurant on Friday evening at 8:00 p.m. signing copies of his book, A Family’s Heartbreak: A Parent’s Introduction to Parental Alienation. Cosi is located at 1700 Pennslyvania Ave. N.W.

Divorce Source Radio features A Family’s Heartbreak

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

What do you get when you introduce Mike Jeffries, the author of A Family’s Heartbreak: A Parent’s Introduction to Parental Alienation to Divorce Source Radio host Steve Peck?

Just that most informative, enlightening discussion on parental alienation you’ll find anywhere, that’s all. You can access the interview at http://www.DivorceSourceRadio.com.

“Steve Peck combines his background in broadcasting with his interest in family and divorce to produce a quality program that could go head-to-head with interview programs anywhere on radio or television,” says Jeffries. “His knowledge of the legal, psychological and emotional issues surrounding parental alienation allowed us to present perspectives of parental alienation that I don’t typically get to explore in interviews. Listeners will find the information enlightening and extremely valuable.”

Divorce Source Radio produces free programs featuring both legal and emotional advice from respected professionals. The weekly streaming podcasts are listened to by thousands of individuals through the  iTunes store by searching “Divorce Source Radio” or on http://www.DivorceSourceRadio.com.

Justice Jeffries style

Monday, March 15th, 2010

Mike Jeffries, author of A Family’s Heartbreak: A Parent’s Introduction to Parental Alienation, will be a guest on the internet talk show America’s Injustice, Tuesday night, March 16 at 8:00 p.m. EST.

The program will focus on parental alienation and the progress parents, legal and mental health professionals have made raising awareness of this destructive family dynamic in the public’s consciousness. The DSM Review Board is currently considering a proposal to put parental alienation in the next edition of the Diagnositc and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders — making this week’s America’s Injustice program particularly relevant.

Listeners can access the program at www.talkshoe.com or call in at 724-444-7444, program ID 52056.

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