The Alienated Parent – An Open Letter

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To whom it may concern

I have now felt it relevant to put my thoughts into words. It appears that no matter how much discussion is held about this matter nothing seems to want, or able to shift the boulder that is blocking the way towards decency, rational thoughts and what is morally correct.
There are so many different ways of saying how much it hurts to be an alienated parent in a way that you might understand, but I can’t. So many times I have tried to look for an understanding or reason, and yet I am still at a loss. With each day break there is no change and yet when I try to sleep all I can see and hear is the child I have difficulty seeing. And this hurts.

Indeed, the pain of child birth is and has always been well documented and yet this is over within a moment. What is never mentioned and conveniently overlooked is the pain being felt by the alienated parent. This pain can, and does, last a life time and is, alas, at times fatal. By simple measure The Australian Men’s Health Forum published on the 19th November 2018 that one in two separated fathers have suicidal thoughts. How is this justified to continue with the loss of not just individuals but fathers, sons and brothers. And yet we continue to discuss the death rates of the plague that affected just 15% of the population many hundreds of years ago. Will our descendants be studying the state sponsored death rates imposed upon absent parents in years to come? I hope so, as this shame is too much for any so-called civilised state to justify. And yet, history has a habit of airbrushing uncomfortable truths that do not make comfortable reading.

The shame can easily be found by talking or listening. This process of alienation is not just set with the odd one or two parent’s but it is endemic and appears to effect every single absent parent I have ever met. By this standard it therefore stands up to scrutiny when I state, therefore, that no every absent parent is absent through choice. Far from it, studies carried out throughout the 1990s found that parents who reside with the child are also the gate keepers to access – regardless of how poorly this is policed by the authorities.

For those absent parents of whom are given small morsels of contact, can you clarify how to explain to a child who wants to see more of you that they can’t based on a person who holds a wrong opinion. The irony is that some of these gate keepers have sons who will one day become fathers themselves. Will the gatekeeper be able to justify their actions when their sons are stopped from seeing their children based on the premise of the precedence they had set a generation before. It may only be then, when the damage has been done, will the error of their ways come to the fore.

On an individual level how can a person think it is perfectly reasonable to develop ways or say untruths to stop a parent seeing their child. We consider that it is unreasonable to drink and drive, or to carry a knife. Yet nothing is mentioned of false accusers or parental kidnap. How does the idea of alienating an absent parent not equate to child neglect or abuse from fracturing the right of a child to accessing a loving parent, regardless of gender. And yet we are bombarded with news reports of rapists getting a say in how the child resulting from the assault is to be raised. How on earth does this measure up to the alienated parent whose only crime was to end a relationship with the other parent. Is it now time to state that crime does actually pay when trying to be there for your child/children is seen as an utter inconvenience and the state sees no reason to uphold such family values?

There have been numerous historical examples of when society has turned a blind eye to issues until it turns on them. Unfortunately, these problems still remain an individual problem but actually impacts upon everyone. With the removal of legal aid to support alienated parents access to the rights of law becomes a privilege and not a right (of which so many wars and conflicts have been fought over). But it is widely known the costs associated with a broken society and broken homes. The numbers of people in prison who had no access to their fathers or substance abusers who never knew their absent parents is immeasurable. But the authorities continue it to be right to stop access on the whim of one parent. If an alienated parent is successful to gain some form of access then the orders are often set out with a frame work of times – wouldn’t it be a good idea to set a frame work that is based both on a maximum and minimum time a parent can see their child. The loving alienated parent would undoubtably take the maximum where as the gatekeeping parent has to ensure the minimum?

With this in mind, throughout my fight to gain access to my daughter I refused to paint a negative picture of my daughter’s mother. Although time after time I was encouraged and expected to. For both social workers and lawyers, it became the norm and expected dirt to be dished like a tabloid newspaper revelling in sickening stories that never took place. Yet I took the stand that she was the mother of my precious little girl. Even after all of this time I will not tarnish her name and will never do so in the presence of anyone else, including my daughter. Perhaps my ex considered that I would, and created a time line of events to perhaps offset whatever I came forward with. I never did and never would, and it has cost me more than I probably could have got. But my integrity and decency remained and always will in the knowledge that my daughter will know she has a loving mother – and will one day know that she has an equally loving father.

In retrospect perhaps, we decided to fight too quickly, yet the recovery is too slow. What I do know is that the state will never kill the hen that lays the golden egg. As the system remains; children go without a wanting and loving parent social workers and lawyers are kept in employment and the law makers decide to keep the status quo because it has been proven to be too profitable to stop.
Maybe I might be wrong. There may be an authority out there of whom is willing to kill off the said golden laying hen for what is right. But I feel there is an element of either laziness or ill education of behalf of those in authority. Is it due to costs, staffing levels or is the alienated parent’s plea too low a priority? I consider that if a child’s physical needs are met then the child’s future emotional and stability is irrelevant – of which the over populated prisons appear to bear witness to.

My child is worth more than money and will always have access to my love of which has always overflowed to create pain of a breaking heart. It takes two to conceive and she will always have two parents wherever life takes her, or the choices that she will make. That fact will never be taken away. But by alienated parents not seeing them does not mean they are loved any less, it’s just that they are thought of more often.
So many things need to change for our children and for children as yet to be born. Too many of our children are being held to ransom by an expensive and elitist legal system. Too many children are told lies by the gatekeeper parent to instil a fear of a person that is unable to speak out. And all of us are paying the heavy price for the present system that is just not working. Afterall, who is actually benefiting from any of this? It’s not our children or the gatekeeping parent who may lay in bed at night wondering when the time of truth will come knocking on their door like an angry bailiff seeking to balance their books.

Wouldn’t it be nice if you could take the reins of all alienated parents and ensure the rights of the child to both parents is ensured, protected and enforced if required.


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