Another Parental Alienation Awareness Day rolls around and I am thinking of all the children missing out on their parent’s love and all the parents who are thinking of their children and wondering how they are today.
Because today is Parental Alienation Awareness Day, the emphasis being upon the word awareness, I thought it might be helpful to follow on from my post, Alienation in Five Steps to focus on the awareness that helps targeted parents to understand what has happened to their children and why.
What I am about to tell you is what alienating parents already know about you but they won’t tell you they know because if they did their strategies for alienation about not quite so effective. Here is what alienating parents know but will not tell you.
- Their alienating strategies are based wholly and solely upon you, they see in you what they cannot see in themselves and they don’t like it. This IS personal, deeply personal.
- Whatever their strategies the core relies upon one central tenet – that you will attempt to deny what you are being accused of and the louder you deny it, the tighter the noose will become as you do.
- The strategies they deploy are wholly based upon aspects of you which can be exploited. When they say you shouted it is because somewhere, sometime, you shouted – perhaps only once, perhaps only a little bit and what parent doesn’t shout at some point in their parenting. But that time you shouted? It was filed away for future use. As was every other little thing you did which is now being wheeled out as evidence for just how bad you are.
- The strategies they deploy are designed to capture others in the net, therefore professionals who are alienation unaware will be told that you are obsessed by parental alienation and that you will not listen to the children. In doing this they have already sown the seeds of doubt in the mind of the alienation unaware professional and prepared the trap for you to fall into.
- When you fall into the trap, by trying to point out to the unaware professional that this is parental alienation you will unknowingly seal your fate. The unaware professional is incapable of believing that such manipulation exists and will close their mind to the possibility that what you are saying is true. When the alienating parent feeds the unaware professional with the information about parental alienation being a discredited issue, you will find yourself viewed as an obsessed parent who has alienated the children all by yourself.
Those are the things that alienating parents don’t want you to know. They also don’t want you to know that you have enraged them to the point of hatred, that you have prevented them from having control and that you have altered the course of the future they believed was theirs by right. Finally what they don’t want you to know is that they are, deep down inside, empty of the love that should be your children’s by right. Instead they are filled with the belief that their right to have children fulfil their needs and stave off their fears and soothe their anxieites, should not be taken away from them.
If you are an alienated father you probably had the audacity to expect that you would care for your children as well as provide for them.
If you are an alienated mother you probably had the audacity to leave him and you could not manage to take the children with you or, you left the children behind in the hope that shared care would be possible.
The reasons why your relationship ended are now the reasons why your children are alienated from you. Bullying, fear, control, enmeshment, coercive behaviours, dramatic episodes, narcissism, personality issues, shouting, arguing, terrorism, you name it, those are the reasons why your children have become trapped and why they cannot get free.
When you understand that your attention turns from the why to the how and then from the how to the how to. When you reach the how to, you are ready to think about building counter strategies to free your children. Counter strategies rely upon you becoming utterly aware of the dynamic which led your children into this so that you can build a strategy to lead them out of it.
That strategy is usually court based. Where it is not it has to be otherwise constructed. This is one big psychological game of chess played in 3D and you had better become a good player because the alienating parent is a grand master, the skill they learned was passed down the generations in the relational space as they grew up. These skills are non verbal, they are manipulation at the height of its mastery and they are played with ruthless precision. This is a transgenerational game of 3D chess and the only time you win is when you manage to stop the alienator, free the children and end the passage of generational trauma for good.
There is little use pretending this is an easy game to win. Your opponent currently has all the odds stacked in their favour. They own the mind of the child and have the ear of a huge range of alienation unaware personnel to assist them. In addition they often come to the game willing to do what it takes and spend what it takes to win. Which means you have their legal team opposing you as well. This is not an easy fight to win. When you go in you have to go in hard with the skill of Muhammed Ali combined with the heart of a lion and the mind of a Jedhi Master. If you are not up for that kind of fight or if you believe that justice will prevail or you rely upon alienation unaware professionals you are in for a nasty shock. This is a long hard fight to the death of the transgenerational patterns of destruction which are used to bind your child into an impossible position. Think sleeping beauty in the thick dense forest and get your sword at the ready to hack through the undergrowth.
Actually when you get there, sleeping beauty turns out to be the alienator waiting for you and s/he will deploy all of the tricks s/he has learned to terrify you into submission, so add into your toolbox a large dose of emotional and psychological fortitude and be prepared to make like a marathon runner. When you think you are exhausted and have had enough you are about half way there. When you are on your knees and crawling you are facing the truth of what has been done to you.
This is what alienating parents know and won’t tell you. Theirs is an inexhaustable strategy which ends just like that scene in the terminator when you think he has died and he opens his eyes and comes back to life. Going in to fight for your children is about the most gruelling, shocking, terrifying, horrible experience you will ever face in your life.
So when you go in you must go prepared and in going prepared you must know this.
- You must understand how your children were captured in this position.
- You must understand how you are being portrayed by the alienating parent.
- You must seek the help of alienation aware professionals and let them do the work of understanding what has happened so that they can do the work of advocating for your children so that you do not become portrayed as an obsessed parent.
- You must be alienation aware and able to educate but understand that there is a time for this and a time to step back.
- You must explore all of the options in full, in doing so make a map of what happened so that you can see the route in because the route in is the route out for your child.
- Choose words carefully and battles even more carefully, wait for the right time to say what you see.
- All through this you must be psychologically and emotionally supported, you must let yourself get the nurture you need and you must recognise that without this you will end up hollowed out and exhausted. You MUST live your life alongside this process, if you don’t you will wither and will not be able to help your children.
- Know when to go forward and when to step back.
- Accept your role as an alienated parent and understand that your health really and truly does matter, without you, your children will be lost to what has been done.
- Never allow yourself to be stripped of your sense of being a parent, if you do the alienating parent has won hands down because they have alienated your children and you from your sense of yourself as a parent, a double victory they will delight in.
I am dedicating this piece for parental alientation awareness this year to Q, the parent of four beautiful children, who has shown the courage of a lion in the face of all that has been thrown through the years. The loss has caused Q such hurt but it has not prevented the continuation of determination to stay well and stay healthy and stay there for those children. Q’s philanthropic care for other young people is a shining example of how pain can be translated into good for others. Q exemplifies for me, the alienated parent’s journey and the courage it takes to keep going step by painful step. I have learned much from Q, most of all how a parent’s love can never ever be eroded, shifted or changed. I hope that Q, like all the other parents and children around the world who suffer this horrible experience, will one day open the door to find those children on the doorstep. Most do find their way home, I hope it is soon for every single one of them.
I really don’t know what to say. Again I come back to ‘for me it’s too late’. I wish I’d known all this 20 years ago maybe then there would have been hope.
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I can identify with all that you say, but for most people the strategy is not Court based. They cannot afford it or are fearful of it, or have already been rejected by it. The support for target parents comes from perhaps a relative, a good friend or a fellow sufferer. Many of these supporters will retreat when they realise the enormity of the task.
Because the actions of the alienator are so personal it is possible to enable and strengthen and train the rejected parent to counter alienating strategies, in the same way that you do; if they are willing. By being in the right places at the right times and saying the right things it is possible for a target parent to alleviate the affects of alienation without making any demands on the alienator.
Whilst the alienator may maintain destructive behaviours in their mind, the effects and behaviours can be minimised so as to de-escalate their negative impact on children and target parent.
Like in most recovery strategies early intervention favours better results.
I agree that early intervention is the best way but I don’t agree that for most it is not court, for most if not all severe case of pa the court is the only way to deal with this .
Karen court may be the “only way to deal with this” but as Anonymous says “they cannot afford it, or are fearful of it or have already been rejected by it”. Unless they have access to ample funds court can only be a far off dream. A cruel reality.
Cruel indeed unless you know how to do it yourself in which case you can do it. This is the essence of our new book. The issue is that you have to know your case and how the child was alienated from you in order to know what to do to tackle the problem and then, in court or out of it you are better and stronger in how you deal with it. K
“Cruel indeed unless you know how to do it yourself in which case you can do it”….. isn’t this contradictory to what you wrote in Point 3 above ie ” you must seek the help of alienation aware specialists and let them do the work etc”? So complicated to the uninitiated.
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Brilliant article. You have captured the essence of alienation in very concise form.
To be honest Karen, despite reading this several times I’m scratching my head a bit over this Post. For example you write under Point 5 “you must explore all of the options in full etc” but just how exactly am I supposed to know what the alleged ‘options ‘ are?
Under Point 2 you write “you must understand how you are being portrayed by the alienating parent”. But HOW? Unless I can be a fly on the wall, I have no idea what the AP is saying about me. No contact =ignorance of what AP is saying/doing.
Under Point 3 you write ” you must seek the help of alienation aware professionals etc”. So more money required. Frustration grows..
Help me out here Karen because other than attempting to “map the route to alienation’ I’m not really much the wiser on the exact strategies I could utilise to reach my alienated child(ren).
I think you are looking for the kind of detailed expertise we offer in our coaching service SS and I cannot do that in a blog post because each case is so different. But I will try to give you an example of what you can do under each of these sections you point out – so under point 2 – how were you portrayed by the alienating parent, how are you being portrayed now – the purpose of understanding this is so that you can counter that portrayal in your behaviours from now on. So how were you portrayed, what did the other parent say about you that caused people to believe those things about you which they used as evidence against you? List those things, absorb them and consider them, do they have roots in any realities, is that how it was done, you have to understand exactly how you were portrayed and be honest about whether you fell into the trap. AT POINT 3 seek help, it doesn’t have to cost you a lot of money it doesn’t have to cost you money at all you can collate information from here, you can read our book you can read other books which I have recommended you can gather much information and assistance that way. The key thing is this is a marathon not a sprint and there is no single magic key which opens the door, you have to find the combination lock. I know already how you were alienated and how to help you from the small things you have told me, I will email you now so that frustration doesn’t grow further. I think it is important that you know that this blog is a blog, not formal guidance, it is a rinse through of all the things we do at the Clinic it is not the detailed step by step approach we use with families we work with. I cannot write those things online because each case is different and the formula is adapted to each case. K
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Thank you for putting this terrible experience into understandable words. All so so true, sadly. When will this emotional suffering be recognised, especially for the children. Thank you.
We’re going thru court and have been for 3 years. Having received a final order with good contact a year ago. The Alienator after a few weeks decided she’s not going to comply instead takes the child to a private Counsellor to claim the child is terrified of the Father and doesn’t want contact. Cafcass and courts all say contact should happen but nothing is being done. It’s going to a final hearing and the absolute rubbish the Counsellor wrote has been submitted as evidence. How can we move forward if the Court believes the bullsh*t or at least considers it to be true?
I’m wondering if your legal rep has requested/ insisted that this Counsellor attends the final hearing for cross examination?
it will be requested if the judge accepts the report as “expert evidence”. We find out soon if he will.
Thank you, Karen. I am following this series with great interest.
Karen, not sure if this is a problem on your end or mine, but lately when I click for blog posts at your site, a grayed-out page appears and you have to scroll way down to the bottom and click “archives” and then access any blog posts, including new ones, through that – very cumbersome and not obvious on the first few tries. Tried on several browsers.
am working on it now David, I was experimenting!!
Page still gray.!!…I resort to just stabbing a finger at the screen and see what comes up highlighted!!! Will be glad when this issue is resolved and your valuable posts are no longer hidden by gray!
is it any better now SS it should be red and easier to read.
Yeaahhhhh! All good now!
Spot on again Karen…you should be awarded an Alternative Nobel Peace prize for family psychology and how to balance the psychotic mind of an alienating DSM5 parent! Alienation is an example of this type of mental disorder…
I could hardly believe the factual reality (which as a scientist and empiricist too) understand exactly the outplay of the psychosis such psychopaths torture our children.
Well I fell into every trap that was ever set for me by my husband and boy was he good at setting traps that I never saw coming!
Quote in reply to sadsam : so under point 2 – how were you portrayed by the alienating parent, how are you being portrayed now – the purpose of understanding this is so that you can counter that portrayal in your behaviours from now on. So how were you portrayed, what did the other parent say about you that caused people to believe those things about you which they used as evidence against you?
I was portrayed as someone who treated my husband badly. The most “awkward” person on the planet. My husband played me and my daughter off against one another and she copied him. Their main complaint/reason for turning on me was that I ‘spoiled every one of THEIR holidays abroad’ – holidays based around his racing which I had been enjoying with him since before we had any children. The truth was I eventually spoke back to him in what he saw as ‘an aggressive tone’ – he continually objected to my ‘tone of voice’ and was always accusing me of having ‘an aggressive tone’ whether I did or not. The reason I spoke in ‘a tone’ was because they (my husband and daughter from late teenage onwards) were constantly pushing me out of their clique even to the extent of getting in the car and leaving me at our caravan (while we were on holiday) without bothering to tell me they were going (even though up to that point in the day everything had been fine). I finally stopped going on holiday with them and told my husband why, or tried to. He told me it was all in my head, I was a fantasist and a liar. Even though I stayed at home (without complaint) while they went on holiday without me it made not a blind bit of difference to the way they treated me. If anything it became worse. I was told ‘it’s all your behaviour and your obsession with the dog’. The dog was my daughter’s dog that I was allowed to walk twice a week while she was at work. In the end he told me the only reason why I was leaving him was because for the first time in my life I couldn’t get my own way. My daughter saw the aftermath of how I reacted to his traps (argued with him) and decided she had to protect her poor dad. She never saw his verbal abuse only me being quiet and upset. But she has decided I was the “awkward” one, the spoiler of their holidays just as he was fond of saying.
How on earth I could have reacted otherwise escapes me completely. He had so many petty rules that she copied it was ridiculous. Answers to his questions had to be either yes or no and nothing else. Anything else was not a “straight answer”. Try giving only straight answers and it’s obvious that it’s ridiculous. Both of them barked “Wait!” at me if I asked to get past them in a restricted place such as the caravan or a doorway. I had to constantly say please and thank you and not interrupt them when they were speaking. If that wasn’t controlling behaviour I don’t know what was but my daughter decided it was me. I was the one who wasn’t worth the dirt on her shoe. How on earth could I ever hope to keep a relationship going in the face of that.
Sorry, rant over.
Sending you a big hug, Willow. I’m wondering if what you describe is an example of something called ‘spousification’? Ie where a child replaces a spouse’s role.
Believe you me sadsam that is exactly what it felt like. Initiated by my husband who decided he no longer liker liked me and had to control me and continued by my daughter. They were like a brick wall.
I hope Karen didn’t think any of my ranting in frustration was aimed at her. I was just angry and frustrated. It comes over me sometimes. Thankfully less often than a year ago. I think Karen does a great job. And thank you sadsam.
Willow you are welcome to rant here anytime xx
As an add on to sadsam’s post (to me) above:
I have just found and started to read an old book (1988) called The Invisible Web: Gender Patterns in Family Relationshipsby Marianne Walters, Betty Carter, Peggy Papp and Olga Silverstein and it’s very interesting from my perspective ie it illustrates what happened to me that brought me to the place of alienation/estrangement. I wish I’d read it ten or more years ago because I might have recognised what was going on long before I finally gave up and left (at which point I had time to work most of it out for myself).
It might apply to one or two of you or it might just apply to me since my estrangement began within an intact family and was caused by my husband’s mixed up views of how to be a husband and father. There are lots of case studies within the book and the one that fits my situation perfectly is in the chapter ‘Fathers and Daughters’ by Betty Carter (three generations of daddy’s girls)
Seven years before I left my husband and daughter I tried to explain to him why I had decided not to go on any more holidays with the two of them – basically because they were completely excluding me and I couldn’t take it any more. At that point daughter did not live at home but joined us on these holidays which were based around his racing and she LOVED the social life. I tried to appeal to his sense of decency but it was no good. He of course told me what he always told me …….. it was all in my head, I was a fantasist and a liar. He totally disregarded how I felt and told me it was my behaviour that needed changing. He had done nothing wrong. It was all me, me who was such an awkward person that I had turned both of them against me. I needed to take a long hard look at myself.
As a result I contacted a well known counselling service here in the UK and emailed them. I outlined my difficulty ie my exclusion. The counsellor commented that she was “struck by the unusual boundaries within our family group” This (as it turned out) very apt comment was never explored because it was long before I worked out what was going on. Instead it became all about the problems we’d encountered throughout our marriage: his mother & sister’s suicides, my domineering mother and weak father, the death of our first child, his lack of involvement and so on. The problems surrounding our surviving daughter got lost in the mud and nothing was solved. Neither did husband wish to be part of counselling because it was all my problem, my behaviour. I had brought it on myself.
Well, I have now (all those years later) read the chapter ‘Fathers and Daughters’ and there under a subheading entitled ‘The enmeshed pattern’ was exactly what I had felt for so long but had been unable to get across to my husband because he would not/could not believe it had anything to do with him, instead it had everything to do with me and “my behaviour”.
In the book there was also a three generation case study. It could have been about the three of us . It was spookily spot on. It was also very simple. There was, to paraphrase:
1. A collusive element between father and daughter that excludes the mother. Daughter is put in number one spot by father which in turn disenfranchises mother. (exactly what my husband did)
2. Mother becomes frustrated and/or angry and begins to confront the happy twosome. Conflict ensues and is seen as the mother’s problem. Everything would be fine if mother backed off and was more like father – except that that doesn’t work either because the exclusion continues. Mother is seen as one to be avoided since it is she who is causing all the trouble.
3. The great father/daughter relationship is, in reality, organising the mother by excluding her and is dictating how she will react.
4. When the mother reacts to this exclusion by responding with hurt, frustration or anger, she becomes the one who is raining on their parade – or, as was my case, spoiling every one of THEIR holidays with my “awkward” behaviour. ……………
5. The distance between mother and daughter grows and leads to estrangement. She is seen as the threat, the baddie to be avoided at all costs because of her negative attitude. The daughter refuses to have anything to do with mother and remains enmeshed with father.
My husband constantly told me that he our preferred daughter to me and wasn’t adverse to telling her either. He constantly told me it was no wonder daughter couldn’t stand the sight of me or to be anywhere near me and saw me as he did. Add to that the bad mouthing (and contempt) by husband which was copied by daughter and the involving daughter in all aspects of marital problems, throw in the three steps above and bingo, you have alienation and total estrangement and mother is seen as the whole problem.
Karen do you come across many intact families and if you do, have you seen the pattern outlined in this book?
My husband also played my daughter and me against each other and I never saw until i left him and the craziness that was created in our house. He told her i wanted her gone and visa versa. He said she couldn’t stand me and he would talk to her so I was hoping he was helping things, but that evil bastard was distancing us even more. My once easy going sweet girl is now so cruel to me. She says the same rude and nasty things he says to me. He lies and accuses me of lying. He steals and accuses me of stealing. It’s a freaking nightmare. I miss the girl she used to be but don’t know how I’ll ever get through to her. I feel your pain.
I was touched by your post and I really r you.
It was also interesting re-reading my contributions above, made in 2017, two years after I walked away. Everything I wrote still stands. I have not seen or heard from my daughter since the summer of 2014 when she told me to get out of her life. She’s married (as of Nov 2015, nine months after I drove away) and even though ‘the daddy trips’ to Europe, (his racing hobby) have come to an abrupt halt due to Covid, I know they are still as much ‘a pair’ as ever they were. This year she’s been riding and competing again. I have come across several photographs of her (posted on facebook by the photographer at the events) and guess who keeps showing up in the background………. not her husband; it’s her dad standing there watching her compete (as I did for many, many, years before he was suddenly became interested). It hurts at the time I discover them, but then I feel grateful to have found the photos of her riding (or any photos of her). The thought of one day not even knowing what she looks like anymore really is unbearable.
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Wonderful article, Karen. What is the best way to find parental alienation experts?
email us at email@example.com and tell us where you are and we will do our best to direct you to them Kristy. K
Wonderfully succinct post for a subject that is complex in so many ways – ie.,the narcissistic traits of the alienator that enables him/her to try and rob you of your (envied) personality through denigration, influencing others and projecting their own “obsessive nature” onto you, the target parent (TP).
Through this blog (and as a direct result the numerous sign-postings to other support), I can testify to the impact that psychological/emotional support and nurture (7/10) can play in helping TPs manage their day-to-day feelings and, then, to navigate their way through the other 9 “things you should know”.
Karen, when you state that “the reasons why your relationship ended are now the reasons why your children are alienated from you”, are we talking about, first, ‘transference’ of the alienating parent’s prior dysfunctional relationships onto the TP and then, by extension, transference of that dysfunction from the child to the TP? Also, when you say “the route in is the route out” (5/10), can you provide a brief explanation/example of what you mean? I’m intrigued and think it could be an interesting exercise for me to explore in understanding MY PA dynamic a little better.
Thanks again for your great work
the above was from everythinghappensforareason……..i think cleared cookies may have been the ‘reason’ this time 🙂
Karen one of the things you don’t say in your Post is that you are referring essentially to cases of ‘Pure Alienation’ ( if I understand correctly!) As you explain in your Nagalro article published in FSC site and your new own website, “a case of hybrid alienation will require a very different route to that of Pure Alienation and a case of Pure and Conscious alienation will often require a different approach to Pure and Unconscious”. Presumably then if a parent self analyses their own scenario and gets this differentiation wrong they will end up pursuing actions/approaches that are at best inappropriate and at worst harmful? Karen, your thoughts and expert input on this would be valued.
Here is my comment: I hope this is where I email you.
Also, can you lead me possibly to an article on knowing when to move on as the targeted parent in order to reestablish a healthy life?
Anastasia · 8 Days Ago
Hi Karen! As always thank you for this insight.
After reading this article, I questioned myself in a few areas..
but I’d rather ask you for clarity to be sure I understood what I read..
I wanted to make sure that I’m processing in a healthy way. Meaning, now that I’ve entered into a new phase of this grief, one of acceptance- I’m now seeking understanding on an intellectual level (comfort and a newer sense of self is emerging) because my mind spirit and body are showing signs of readiness to move away from the perpetual victimized feeling, the disempowered state, the anxiety, the agony, the longing, the paralysis, the depression- so on…. In order to regain a sense of self, and not allow this out right rejection and for sure on the hybrid alienation spectrum from my son experience – to continue to consume my mind and spirit, through the “distancing” phase you speak of to be able to live again.. through the “intellectualization”over time moms and dads will numb out and cannot feel anything?
So is the “distancing” and “intellectualization” not a healthy process to undergo? Sorry so wordy..
on one hand it seems in the article- it reads that the distancing occurs in order for the parent to survive but over time the rejected or alienated parent numbs out and is unable to feel? I feel deeply- I just want and need to live and trust the maturation process of my son as of life period that one day he’ll come back and I’ll will have lived well..
Do I run the risk of numbing out as a result of distancing and through the intellectualism phase? Is that what your implying? And the other parent is happy about it once the targeted parent moves on? What if the other parent moves on through distancing but still feels deeply, they’ve just learned to accept and have learned the skills necessary to not allow it to any longer suck the life force out of them? Does the parent like that as well? That you’ve moved on, still feel but have gotten away from their control..
Run on sentences galore..
Anastasia · 8 Days Ago
In my distance,,I meant, I’d like to trust trust the natural maturation process of my son and of life period… typographical errors in my above comment there. It’s not an English class I’ll tell myself.. Haha..
Thank you for an article that helps me analyse my situation more thoroughly. Having separated three months ago, I am very much still starting out.
Excellent article as always, especially point 2 in the list. Everything one ever did comes back to haunt. In my case even that I broke my glasses playing with the children once!
I fully support the work you and other professionals are doing – the aim should be to make the public more aware that this happens in order that something can be done in time. As one of your posters mentioned – We did not know about this at the start of our ‘journey’, and to be frank even if I did the legal system here in Germany does not support a timely solution in these cases which inevitably leads to parental alienation.
I noticed your article when searching the internet. I an pleased I found it as I have been looking for this type of forum/blog.
I really feel for anyone going through parental alienation. I am still married(separated) and this behaviour by the other parent has been used against me for a considerable time. My partner will literally shut my sons in a room with her and I get stonewalled by all. As the boys are with her just about all the time it makes meaningful contact & communication almost impossible.
I have been told on numerous occasions that she will get the children if we split, I will never see them again, they won’t want to see me etc
My youngest has said to me before ‘ mum says you get angry’ my response is ‘ I don’t get angry with you & you need to consider if I get angry, why I do’
My eldest doesn’t talk to me anymore, hasn’t done for months. I asked him why & he can’t give me a reason. I know the reason, his mother has told them what a bad person I am. This is the same person who falsely alleged violence to the courts to have me removed from the house, but apart from the initial hearing did not attend court to back the statement made to the courts.
I did return to the house with hope of reconciliation, but after the first few weeks, the verbal and psychological abuse commenced again, constant criticism and personal attacks usually in front of both children.
I left the house again early Aug after I found a card had been stolen and used on my business account. I called the police and I volunteered to leave the house that night to allow calm. The police now tell me I cannot return so once again I am portrayed as the person who has caused this action. On the day I gathered some things & left, I asked to see my youngest. I left the room for a moment & when I returned the police officer advised me that my youngest did not want to see me. I asked WHO told you that? But got no response.
Local safeguarding called me the same day, but as far as I know, no further action has been taken. I did speak to safeguarding earlier in the year when we separated & expressed concern that the children were being coerced. The response was ‘ well you’re out of the house, so there won’t be further abuse’