April 25 is Parental Alienation Awareness Day (PAAD) in the USA, Canada and Bermuda.
This awareness day was created as a part of global awareness campaign about parental alienation. Parental alienation is described ” a behavior by a parent, or an adult a child trusts, such as a grandmother/father, aunt, uncle, etc., whether conscious or unconscious, that could create alienation in the relationship between a child and a parent.”
Also known as Hostile Aggressive Parenting, the behaviour displayed can be mild and temporary but also extreme and ongoing. Obvioulsy any kind of behavior that is displayed as a result of parental alienation can be damaging upon a child and could have potentially life long consequences should the behaviour of both carer and child not be recognised and effectively addressed.
Not to be confused with Parental Alienation Syndrome which relates to the behaviour of the child, Parental Alienation focuses on the adults behaviour.
Parental Alienation Awareness Day recognised on April 25th aims to highlight to care givers the effects that PA could have on children and educate adults in order to identify signs that either they or others are behaving in a manner that could affect the children in their care. Parental Alienation usually involves one care giver attempting to turn a child against another often with a view to persuade the child that they wish to exclude the other parent from their life permanently. Typical types of behaviour displayed by parents can include:
- constantly badmouthing/ belittling the other;
- limiting the other’s contact;
- forbidding the child from discussing the other parent;
- creating the impression that the other parent dislikes or does not love the child; or
- trying to force the child to reject the parent to make the former partner a former parent as well.
The idea of PAAD belongs to Sarvy Emo from Canada. Emo introduced the observance of the day in the late 2005 with the original date on March 28. This date was changed to April 25 for marketing reasons and was put into practice in 2006.
With awareness comes education, and with education, comes the power to stop the mental and emotional abuse of children.–Sarvy Emo
To find out more about this awareness day, visit one of the many dedicated websites aimed at raising awareness of the behaviours that could have a long lasting effect on our kids.