Think about where you are as a targeted parent in your high conflict divorce. Are you defeated, ready to give up, and feel nothing you do is answered in positive ways? Are you feeling that you can persist in your efforts to regain a relationship with your alienated child, even though your ex-spouse is making your life a living hell? At times, both scenarios could be true.
My parent coaching practice focuses on moving targeted parents through parent alienation. The clients that make the most progress understand that persistence and goal setting is the best way to approach reuniting with their children. This is not to say that alienated parents do not experience ups and downs in the process. The difference is that these parents are able to push through the setbacks.
Having a strategic plan and setting small goals is essential to moving forward in a positive way when it comes to reuniting with your children. Goal setting gives you a plan for your future and allows you to know where to focus your efforts. Goal setting also provides you with short term motivation.
Targeted parents who reach small goals in the beginning of coaching report feeling hope instead of hopelessness. For example, setting a small goal of trying to get a text message from your child, can lead to phone calls.
I have found that targeted parents who set realistic goals have a better chance of reuniting with their alienated children. Unrealistic goal setting tends to cause hopelessness leaving the targeted parent wanting to give up quickly. Slow and steady is the approach to take when attempting to reconnect with your alienated child.
Dr. Sue Cornbluth is a nationally recognized parenting expert in high conflict parenting situations. She is a regular mental health contributor for an array of networks and television shows such as NBC, FOX and CBS. Dr. Sue has also contributed to several national publications. Her new best-selling book, Building Self Esteem in Children and Teens Who Are Adopted or Fostered is available now. To find out more about her work, please visit Dr. Sue’s website.