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As a divorced parent in Texas, you have rights

When you made the decision to cut ties with your spouse by filing a divorce petition in a Texas court, you were not simultaneously abdicating your parental obligations. Neither does a divorce negate your parental rights. In short, spouses divorce spouses; parents do not divorce children. Like most parents who have gone through similar experiences, you were no doubt quite hopeful that, with lots of love and support, your kids would be able to successfully adapt to a new lifestyle.

What you didn't expect was that your ex would try to impede your parent/child relationships and would do everything in his or her power to try to turn your kids against you. Parental alienation is a real issue, and many post-divorce parents suffer when their former spouses target them. That's why it helps to know how to recognize a serious problem and also what to do about it.

Is your ex behind your children's rejection of you?

While spouses don't always go their separate ways on the best of terms with each other, it doesn't give a parent the right to use under-handed tactics to alienate children from a co-parent. The following list includes issues that definitely warrant concern and may even mean that your spouse is trying to cause serious damage in your relationship with your kids:

  • It is not natural for children to hate their parents when there are no signs of abuse or neglect in the children's lives. However, a main goal of parental alienation is to try to inculcate feelings of hatred in children so they will not want to see the targeted parent.
  • Barring situations of abuse or neglect, it is also not natural for children to fear their parents. If one or more of your kids are telling teachers, counselors or friends that they fear you, there may be a reason, and the reason might have something to do with a parental alienation scheme.
  • If your children are using vocabulary to describe you that sounds scripted, it might be because their other parent is orchestrating their speech.
  • If your kids have suddenly turned against your extended family, it is a definite cause for concern, especially if they have always been close to said relatives in the past.

Sadly, children who fall victim to parental alienation often have experienced abuse from the alienating parent. If you suspect that your ex's presence in your kids' lives is a detriment to their mental or physical health and safety, you can take immediate steps to bring evidence to the court's attention.

Mending the bond

Children are typically highly adaptable; however, if a parent has pounded certain ideas into their heads over an extended period of time, it can be quite challenging to restore your parent/child relationships, even if you and other adults convince your kids that the things your ex said about you are not true. Licensed counselors, community faith leaders and experienced family law advocates can be helpful to parents and children who are trying to mend their bonds.

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We offer new clients a free, one-hour initial consultation. We assist people in North Texas, throughout the DFW Metroplex. We have represented clients out as far as Wise county and up to Gainesville. Call our law office in Denton at 940-215-0707 to make your appointment. You can also reach our firm by email.

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Jones & Associates
100 W. Oak St
Suite 103
Denton, TX 76201

Phone: 940-215-0707
Fax: 940-432-3482
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