Few things are as painful for a parent as waking up for the first time to a house without their children. Time spent apart from your children due to divorce can be a good thing. It can help you appreciate each other more.
Yet, what if the distance results in a weakening of the bond between the two of you? Situations like this do happen.
Parents can try to turn children against the other parent after a divorce
If you feel your child has become more distant, it could be because the other parent is manipulating them. It can happen, especially if the child spends much more time with the other parent than with you. Some call this Parental Alienation Syndrome.
The other parent can tell the child about things that you have done, whether true or false. They could blame things on you.
Your co-parent may not even need to speak to give your child a sense that you are somehow the villain. They may let out a sigh of exasperation every time that your child mentions your name. Or, your co-parent may laugh in disdain when your child tells them something you said. Your son or daughter will start to get the message about how your co-parent feels about you in these instances.
Think before accusing your ex of turning your child against you
While the other parent may be trying to turn your child against you, there may be other explanations for your child’s distant behavior. Making unjustified accusations could worsen the situation. You may want to try speaking with your co-parent to see if your child is also acting differently with them.
Remember that divorce is confusing for a child. They can sometimes feel obliged to take sides. Your child may have other issues affecting their behavior toward you. Perhaps they are a teenager, and their hormones are playing havoc with their feelings.
You have options if your co-parent is trying to turn your child against you. It’s wise to seek legal advice. Your attorney may advise you of your right to modify your parenting plan if parental alienation is a factor in your situation.