Withholding your children out of spite

Withholding your children out of spite

Dear Readers,

Please forgive my absence. I have been going through a lot of challenges in my family life. One of them involves my youngest grandson, who I have not seen since his 4th birthday party in early February, which was held in my home.

Because of a disagreement between his parents, the mother vowed never to let any of us – including his Dad, see the boy again.  Parental alienation is what experts call it. Let me just say, it wasn’t because of lack of child support. Or ill treatment.  Our grandson was treated with love by the entire family. If lawyers weren’t so expensive, this would be nipped in the bud – maybe.

Being grandparents, my husband and I have no say so in the matter. We  shared responsibility along with our son in taking care of our youngest every Sunday while his mother worked into the night. We did this gladly with no complaints. The mother’s abrupt decision came as a shock.

This isn’t the first time she’s done this.  Because of a past disagreement, she kept the boy away for almost a year. When our grandson did return to us, we were strangers to him. It took time for him to know us again. Now here we go again.

Are you that parent who withholds her children out of spite? Do you withhold contact information? Say bad things about the other parent? Allow an emotionally distraught child to choose whether or not to see the other parent?  Decisions like that made out of  hurt is not fair to the other parent. This is parental alienation.   It is a  a cruel and selfish punishment that has no positive outcome – especially for your child.

As a grandparent, I too am damaged emotionally. But I have no rights. I wondered how could I counsel other parents about raising their kids well when hell was being raised in my own family.

So I stopped writing.

I’m lifted by the fact that we just had our oldest grandson who is six, visit us from out of town. He couldn’t understand why he wasn’t able to see his little brother. A grandson who is far away…another who might as well be… No, this situation is not ideal. But it is what it is.

However I have a strong faith. It is written, all things work together for good. My oldest grandson inspired me to continue writing this blog. So here I am.

Through prayer and reflection, things will work out. Once I receive my breakthrough, I will share it with you. In the meantime, please share your story with me. Have you ever experienced parental or grandparental alienation? Ever practiced it? No judgments.  Just wisdom, solutions and healing.

Thanks for reading.











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  • my wife is going through the same thing with her sister-in-law playing games with her brother. This stuff affects everyone involved. These women seem to forget that these remember this stuff growing up. I hate it when people try to play a game when their are no winners.

  • ^kids

  • Assuming your grandkids live in Illinois, take a look at 750 ILCS 5/607(a-3), and also (a-5). Might help you, might not, but its worth a shot.

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    It hurts to read this, Eyde. Your pain and sorrow is in every word. I don't know how people can get so caught up in their own rage and lose sight of what's best for their children. My parents separated and came back together several times while I was growing up. I've always respected my mother for never speaking badly about my father in front of me as a child. And didn't allow my older brothers to either. She never wanted to bring that kind of confusion into my life. God bless her.

    I truly hope that this hurtful family situation rights itself, Eyde, and that you are reunited with your grandson very soon.

  • I wonder if the "mother" has a clue as to how this is going to influence the child's view of her. In so many cases the restricting parent causing the alienation becomes the bad parent as the child matures.

    I divorced when my children were two and three. I was careful not to say negative things about their father when they were in earshot. I made every effort to assure that the children saw the absent parent even when he quit a well paying job to avoid child support and when he and his sister hid about a quarter of a million dollars in funds they received for the sale of property. My adult children thank me to this day. My advice to all parents is keep your negativity to yourself unless being with the estranged parent is a danger to your child.

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    I feel your pain. A very good friend of my mother's cannot see her grandchild because of the mother either, and even more close to home is another terrible and more situation. My brother Shawn isn't really my brother by blood. He was my brother-in-law until I was divorced in 2010. He has made some mistakes in his lifetime and will continue to make them, he's a young guy, but he's one of the most loving fathers I've ever seen. My ex-husband was living wth him and his fiance and two sons (both of which may not even be biologically his, and at least one of them isn't for sure, but whom he loved as if he gave birth to them both himself). For whatever reason, my ex decided it would be a laugh to be a homewrecker. The fiance was a very weak-minded girl, and my ex preyed upon that fact convincing her that his brother was cheating on her and likely that he was so much more of a man than that, whatever, etc. So, she left my brother, took all the money they had together and the children, and won't let him see the kids he raised for years regardless if they had matching DNA to his. For the past year and a half, he has attempted to negotiate a way to see those kids. The mother would be okay with it, then my ex would find out it was going on and she would jump sides and pretend like it was all someone else's idea. The boys' Christmas presents sat where the tree had been in my brother's living room for seven months before he had the opportunity to finally get them in their hands. There are cold, selfish, spiteful people in this world, and if you've got that in your heart, maybe you shouldn't have kids in the first place.

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    I pursued a satisfying career in the advertising industry, served as a volunteer mentor and parent educator at my two (now grown up) sons' schools and have actually stayed happily married for over a quarter of a century. However, my most gratifying achievement was raising my sons well. I'm not saying there wasn't a little bit of hell raising going on, but you live and learn. Now I'm passing the knowledge on to you. My goal is to turn these nuggets of wisdom into reference books for parents.

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    Check out my other blogs: "Trending Over 40", An informational blog for those over 40 who find themselves social-media challenged, http://trendingover40.com "Black Copy" Reflections of a veteran ad chick, http://eldhughes.wordpress.com. You can find samples of my ad work on this site. Simply click on TV and Print tabs. Also check out my company, Hughes Who Productions http://hugheswhoproductions.com. We develop games and animation for casinos, marketers and educational institutions. Thank you for your interest. Blessings... Edye
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