Worst Mother's Day Ever

Yesterday was an all time low. I've been dealing with the effects of PAS for years, but yesterday, Mother's Day, it reached a breaking point. My 17 and 14 year old daughters refused to come with me for the special day I had planned. Like so many others in this situation, I tried talking, convincing, negotiating, pleading, crying, and defending...all under the watchful eye of the police detective my ex called when I refused to drive away from a public street without my girls.

I left an emotionally abusive marriage 10 years ago, and made the horrific mistake of thinking it was best for the children's stability to leave them in their home. Besides which, their father told me he would find me and kill me if I took them. I was so confused and stupidly believed his nonsense. Now I know he is a sociopath and a bully, and I made the very wrong choice, even if it was for the right reasons. He will never care enough about our children do anything but destroy everything that has anything to do with me. I have been struggling for 10 years to stay connected and counter the vicious lies he and his wife have brainwashed my girls about me. I lost the custody battle 4 years ago, because I'm the one who left. I thought that was going to kill me. Though I didn't get custody of my girls, I had an order that protected my rights to spend a fair amount of time with them. I've had to take my ex back to court several times since for various violations and he still ignores my role as their mother since in his world I have been replaced by his wife, the better mother.

Yesterday, Mother's Day, everything changed. Emboldened and terribly intimidated by their father, my girls refused to spend Mother's Day with me. This is the first, and now I know not the last, time the order for visitation has been openly refused. My girls stood there and told me, with tears streaming down my face, that they would testify in court against me, that they don't want to spend much time with me, they want it to be on their terms. My youngest told me when she hears my name she gets chills because she is so afraid of what I'm going to do. I heard her father's voice as she told me that I left them and I don't care about them. This was beyond shocking, and like a knife in my heart. I've tried desperately to create a happy place for them when they are with me, take them on trips, tell them I love them, make them feel special and loved. I know I don't deserve this, but I don't know what to do to counter this madness. I know teenagers have issues with their parents, but this is way outside the norm because of the fear and intimidation they experience from their father.

I know the courts aren't going to mandate that they spend time with me and the fact that I am the victim of PAS is not compelling in the legal world. I've been grieving hard since yesterday and feel like I am saying goodbye to my children forever. I see this as the beginning of the downward spiral, where even the court order no longer provides me with any support or protection. Once this line has been crossed, they now know, if the full presence of their father, stepmother, and the police, that they have all the control. Only I know it is not their control they are exercising, but his. They can't see that and I can't live like this. Do I let them decide when, how often, how, and for how long they will spend time with me? Are they calling all the shots now? If the court is no help and the order is essentially useless in this regard, how do I form a new relationship with my children in the face of my ex's abuse? I know everyone says to wait it out and they will come back, but I have to get through the next 4 years. I want to move away and protect myself from this pain, I want to fight, I want to give up, I want to disable him, I want to sleep and not wake up, I want to starve, I want them to know how much I love them and that I never left them, I want to hold them in my arms like when they were babies and never let them go...Please Help.
draebear draebear
46-50, F
18 Responses May 14, 2012

you can understand your daughters more by HelloSpy

I too am a victim of PAS. I hate to use the term victim as it makes me feel like how somehow let this happen; but there is no better term. We truly are the victims of a horrible "intangible to the courts" crime. After years of trying to combat it legally (over 65,000 dollars that could have been better spent), I came to the conclusion that only I can climb out of this pit and reframe my life. That was 6 years in of trying to be a part of my sons life. He turned 18 and I told him "son you are old enough to make your own decisions now. I can't continue to try, only to be rejected, ignored, alienated and made to feel like I don't matter. I know I am a good person and a good mother- other people tell me that and I spend a lot of time around others peoples children who adore me."

A few years later, my son camelback into my life.....he's now 23. I was so happy and it was two years before I let my guard down to feel like maybe he cared for me. Sadly....my ex is still a victim in my sons eyes and guilts him and manipulates him into feeling bad about caring for his Mom. My new partner (the same person I have been with for 12 years) has two amazing girls. Funnily enough.....we were both going thru divorce situations for the exact same reasons (we had found each other and left our unhappy marriages). His ex and him had the usual emotional challenges but were able to put their children's needs first and her and her husband and me and her ex husband can all sit in the same room, laugh and joke and get along respectfully. This makes a huge difference to the girls and they feel safe.

My stepdaughters love my son and love spending time with him. He is their big brother. Of course this irks my ex. Did I mention he's bald headed, tattooed and likes that biker mentality. Fits the bullying, narcissistic, mentally abusive, tough .....but unwilling to accept accountability "sons of anarchy" model. Anyway I digress.

Recently my son is alienating me again suggesting I need to put the ideas of a perfect family. His dad still manipulating him and making him prove his loyalty to him by not seeing me.

I told my son that "Oddly enough neither you or your father had any concerns until I left. I never left you.....I left your dad. I will love you forever and I would love to hear from you but I won't make any promises that I will feel the same way later. A person can only take so much intentional hurt and pain before they say enough! I wish you all the best and if and when you are ready to talk......I'll be ready to listen."

So here I am again, reliving the PAS, hurt, gut wrenching uncontrollable tears and pain that no parent should ever have to go thru once......let alone twice. But here I am all the same. This time around I gave it a month. It's okay to have that time.....you just can't live there forever. Nobody is going to care about you as much as YOU.....except maybe you mom and dad :-)

I'm blessed I have some pretty good friends who have supported me emotionally and mentally over the past 12 years. I've never stopped reading about PAS and it's horrible effect and can't believe that divorce somehow strips some loving parents of their rights because someone else can lie, manipulate and brainwash their children. What I've come to realize is those people we were married to were not people of good moral fibre, strength, love, courage nor do they have good hearts. They are selfish cowards who are fulfilling a need and void so deep and wide in themselves that they wouldn't hesitate to put their own children out if it suited their needs. They are so self absorbed about how people look at them, see them, need to be right no matter what the cost and no matter how much collateral damage they cause. They do this because they lost US. He lost you and it wasn't his choice and he didn't like the way it made him look. This has nothing to do with anything you did wrong. This is about his vanity, his pride and likely some false set of standards he projects but doesn't adhere to himself because he's got one standards for himself and another for everyone else.

I know they are just words but if my experience helps anyone at all.....it was all worth it. Tough times don't last....tough people do and if you are still here......you are a strong, tough resilient fighter. My hat goes off to you.

Make a conscious choice to take back your power and establish some small boundaries to start with. Those will lead to others. Baby steps. Only the people you love and care about can hurt you so it makes perfect sense that you are hurting. How you move forward is the important part right now.

You matter to a lot of people. My new husband said that our children's morals and belief systems are formed by the time they are 11. The last 4 years that I have had conct with my son I can see a lot of me in him. My husband gets to live with seeing me everyday. That's all he has left of me. So know in your heart and mind that you are a huge part if who your kids are today. They are being manipulated and living in fear of disappointing their dad because of his controlling behavior.

I know it doesn't make it better but if you focus on you, take a step or two back, let go of those few threads of hope you are hanging onto and accept you can't control what he does, you can only control how you respond.......it helps a little. These aren't your choices and you wouldn't ever as a loving mother ever abandon your children. He just needs for it to look that way.

You might consider in a few moths once you've taken back you power to write a letter of love and understanding to your girls. This isn't easy for them. I always thought.....I was 25 and dealt with it as an adult for 13 years. How the heck is a teenager supposed to deal with it? It's Stockholm syndrome for our children who are stuck in that situation. They already are one parent down......what happens if they aren't loyal to the remaining parent? It's so sad but I encourage you to pour that love and care into a group or invest it in another child, group of children and just bask in the glow of appreciation you will feel the first time you get a hug from a child who appreciates your efforts. It really fill your gas tank and that my friend.......will be the first day in a while where your smile lights up the room again.

From one broken hearted momma to many.....please stand strong and support one another. For those who've never been a target (not a victim)......they can't possibly know how much strength, courage and love it takes to make the right decision, be strong enough to live thru the aftermath and come out the other side wiser, stronger and with even more love in our hearts. We are the true combat mothers and we can make a difference to others. Our perpetrators only hurt others.

Much love and strength to you all. Thank you for this site......writing this letter was another part of my healing process.

Ditto experience here. I cancelled trial after 6 corrupt circus crazy abusive years in the family court system in Pennsylvania as I knew that unless my 3 children were removed from sociopath/bully/narcissist father, they would continue to suffer being torn, abused, shamed, when they wanted to love me, want to me. I moved across the nation 5 years ago this month. God bless you. I pray and trust in Our Blessed Mother Mary who wears combat boots to bring them home at just the right time-they were 12, 10, and 8 at onset of legal battle and now they are 23, 20, 19...no contact with 2 a bit with my middle one. :)

I am so sorry you also are going through this mental abuse. I haven't seen my daughter in four months and my 10 year old son told me two nights ago that he doesn't want me to pick him up anymore. I know exactly what you mean.. I wished the same too, that I would just go to sleep and not wake up. Hope that we find some comfort and pray that our children will eventually find us.

I feel the same way!!!

News update...<br />
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The mother in the international custody dispute had been refused her claim by the Australian Supreme Court; the kids will be going back to Italy apparently, although they still have one more case going in the Family Court of Australia (the one which returned the kids to Mother after they had been found by police). The media hysteria is, "last chance for Italian sisters to stay in Australia". For as long as media supports alienators and kidnappers, there will be no change. It's all too easy to talk about "the rights of the child" and that child wishes should be listened to. But I believe the kids first of all have the right not to be brainwashed and mentally abused.<br />
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In Australia, even if alienation is proven by psychologists, the courts leave kids in the care of alienator on the basis of "too much psychological harm if a child is removed". It must become un-acceptable to alienate kids against the other parent first, and be shameful when kids do not see the other parent.

omg!!! i know how you feel....im so sorry for your loss. i gave up...i saved myself.

Unfortunately, in Australia cops will not touch a kid. Cops get abused themselves by adolescents, and can't respond, the courts let the kids off with a warning. Once a kid turns 10, they "can choose", once they are 14, they can run away from home and the government pays them money to support themselves, they don't even have to go to school. <br />
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There is a case in the Australian Supreme Court: a mother kidnapped 3 kids from an Italian father (kids were born and all their life lived in Italy) and took them to Australia (the mother was born in Australia and met the father on a trip to Italy). She even had newspaper articles published how she "escaped" and lied to the father (she told the father she was going for a vacation for the kids to see grandparents). She told the same to the kids, that they were going for a vacation. Then once in Australia, the mother cut off any contact with the father. The father came to Australia immediately and filed in the court for return of the children to Italy, which after a year in the court had been granted to him, and found that the mother didn't have the father's permission to take the kids to Australia permanently. The mother did a runner and would not allow to take the kids, hid them somewhere and went to newspapers and media with a story that the father was abusive and she would not return to Italy for fear of prosecution. <br />
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Police was looking for kids, found them eventually being hidden by family members, the mother got NOTHING for not following the Court's order and obstruction of justice - even better! Politicians gave her money for lawyers who filed in Supreme Court asking for a change of legislation!!! Because by now after 2 years kids are totally brainwashed and do not want to go back to Italy. And the kids... After a few weeks in foster care they were returned to the mother! Who kidnapped them in the first turn.<br />
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So, now you know... It only takes a few weeks to brainwash a child completely, in half a year they hardly remember their life before, with the speed of Australian courts (takes YEARS) the children will be so brainwashed, the judge will say, "it will be too traumatic for the child to be taken away from the alienating parent" ... This is what they said in the case of Italian father when returning the kids to the mother - when the father had a court order in ands that the kids must be returned to Italy!<br />
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And as I said, once a child is 14, no one can tell them what to do... so all you need to do is to keep brainwashing the children and teach them to threaten they will kill themselves if taken away from the alienators. <br />
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And by the way, you still have to pay the child support, even if the kids abuse you (with alienator's approval and silent encouragement). Bullying another child at school would et them in big trouble; bullying a parent is not a problem obviously! <br />
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No one will help. No one.<br />
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The courts view is, "it's unfortunate, but we have to act in the best interests of the child, and the child's obvious wishes are to be with (the alienating parent) and it would be too traumatic for the child to have her removed."<br />
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We can only rant on sites like this.<br />
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I am pretty sure there would be big difference if there was financial difference if a parent violated a court order - they fine you $350 for crossing on a red light, but disregard a court's child care order and no consequence whatsoever! No enforcement whatsoever! <br />
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I wish I knew it before.<br />
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So, if your alienation in just the beginning stages, LISTEN AND LEARN: <br />
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- Don't hope the alienator will stop. Once they start, they just carry on. The result will be that you will lose your kids. They will start hating you and be abusive to you.<br />
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- Your only escape is to grab the kids and run. Then do alienation yourself against your ex. Claim child abuse; even if it's proven that abuse claims were made up, time will pass and with your alienation against your ex, the children will express clear desire to stay with you. It's easy to brainwash a child; don't discipline them, buy them everything they want, allow to play computer games and watch TV all day long (turns them into easily manipulated ob<x>jects, no own thinking - and they get addicted pretty easily to be in front of a screen). Just make sure they do their homework - don't push hem to excel, just make sure they do something and get a pass. As long as kids do well at school, the court will not remove the kids from you.<br />
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- Don't want this fate for your kids and don't want to be the alienator? Then you will lose your kids. Remember, if one parent started alienation, the non-alienating parent will always lose!<br />
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Sad but true.<br />
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You can be the alienator and have your kids, or you can be a nice person and lose your kids. Maybe forever.<br />
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Yes, it's that simple and no one gives a flying piece of excrement!

you should of called cps right then demanded they come and have someone supervise your visit with your children to SHOW to the courts not only are you not afraid that someone watches your time with your children, but so they will see how your children have been lied to and brain washed.<br />
you should of NEVER of left your children, told the cop thank you for coming and said this was your court approved time with the children and the children must come!! and you want their help..<br />
seriously.. gain a spine<br />
of course the father hates you, his ego has not forgotten the blow, he's nuts<br />
so you have to be stronger!!<br />
I would of NEVER of left, and I would of called court support child custody agent immediately!!<br />
when you drove off, he was laughing his head off!! and you left your children defenseless!!<br />
you also must record all visits with your children and DEMAND a child psychologist for your children to find out who and when they heard these lies..<br />
your x will be so busted and you can use this to get the kids back<br />
if anything, by doing what he did<br />
he set up the loss of his own kids to you<br />
buck up<br />
your war is not over yet<br />
remember RECORD all visits with your children, every conversation!! so <br />
if kids say on this.." .." particular visit you did this or said this,, you got the video to show they are LYING..<br />
do not resent the kids, they are messed up with a controlling father!!

Hi, I can sympathise with how you feel. I haven't seen my two daughters in months and miss them everyday. The injustice is so frustrating and the pain of not seeing them is like a living death. They are 120 miles away, but it feels more like thousands. I did get a birthday card from them last week, and you have thought I had won the lottery! I am trying to look at it that I am a good mum to give them the freedom to explore their lives, and I just pray that one day they will come back and be a part of my life again. I am finding therapy in writing a book, prompted by years of horrendous abuse and and mental torture inflicted on me and my girls when I was still married to him. I am hoping to get it published this year sometime. There will now have to be a book number 2 with what has now happened! Please find strength and believe they will find you again. In the meanwhile, know that you are not alone. x x

I thought i was so alone, i havnt seen my four children ina year, although they are 25,23,21,15 and have there own minds, but from being there for them 24/7 all there life to nothing is unbearable. i WAS MARRIED 24 YEARS, BUT NOT HAPPY FOR MANY, I PLUCKED THE COURAGE UP TO DO SOMTHING ABOUT IT AND LOST EVERYTHING, Came home one day to find my belongings in the garden and lock changed, i was so shocked i just went and i havnt seen my children since that day. Ive tried the courts for my youngest but to no avail, i write i ring i email but i get ignored i go to deliver present for bdays and xmas but get them thrown back at me, they only contact me when they want to be abusive for something i have tried to do that is nice. There father will not speak to me. I was the main carer always have been he hardly participated in family life and thsi is what i get. i CANT BELIEVE IT, I CANT MOVE ON ITS BEEN A YEAR AND IT DOESNT GET ANY EASIER NOT SEEING THEM, I DONT FEEL I CAN LIVE THE REST OF MY LIFE IF THEY ARE NEVER GOING TO BE IN IT, TNSI IS JUST SURVIVAL.

hang in there, if you filed for joint custody, the other parent cannot stop you from seeing them, all you have to do is call the court set up a cop being there and the cop will make sure the kids make it into the car..
If you gave all your rights up for the children. well that on you..
but still you can write things on facebook or have a blog they can read, just let them know your name and www address.. its a start..

I'm so sorry.

Hi, I have searched and searched for other Mums going through this. My ex never accepted the court's judgement that I could move with my girls 120 miles away. The Cafcass report saying it was what the girls wanted was never accepted and he has sought revenge ever since despite my ensuring his contact and holiday time with them. He took my 15 year old 2 years ago, and I feared he would then get my youngest who is the apple of my eye. This has now happened. She had everything going for her here, I won an appeal to get her into the school of her choice, she won the part of 'ANNIE' had a huge circle of friends and was the happiest child you could imagine. She turned mono syllabic overnight and I found texts and emails from her sister bribing her to join her and the father with offers of material things and the offer of an 'agent' to support her singing and acting. So at 13 she has gone and there was nothing I could do. This was only 6 weeks ago, and she is still monosyllabic when I speak to her because I know she feels guilty as there was no reason for her to leave. Today I have had the CSA on to me and it is the final straw. When he got my first daughter had told me we could make a 'private' agreement which I went along with. He offered me £200 maintenance for my daughter and said he wouldn't claim anything for the daughter he had taken. Seemed a good deal to me. Now he has both daughters, I have lost all my benefits, he has quite rightly stopped my maintenance, but without warning instructed the CSA to pursue me for BOTH daughters. What happened to any 'private' agreements! Not only have I lost the thing most precious in my life, I now have to pay for it! Please please tell me there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Me too no contact from my son for mothers day... You feel so empty and alone. I think about the child I bought into this world, who I love and adore and never asked or wanted him to leave..but he has been so brainwashed by his father and step mother and the rest of the family... I still had to pay maintenance even though my son would not see me..child support agency have a lot to answer for as well. My son believes I don't love him even though I tell as often when I can at every waking chance. He turned 18 last year and he now wants nothing to do with me... after years of trying and consent rejection I have run out of steam and hope it's been going on for over 5 years... I wish there was a group or others to talk to of the pain...

So sorry to hear about your Mother's Day. I am sorry to say I had a similar experience this Mother's Day. You can read about it at parentshaveavoice.blogspot.com. It is so sad to see how the court system will take a bully and turn them into an even bigger bully. My faith in God is the only thing that keeps me going. I know that someday I will be able to connect the dots backwards and understand why I had to go through this. I will not allow it to darken my heart in the meantime. We as parents need to unite. I think it would be awesome if we organized a nationwide walk of mother's and father's that have been alienated from a child. I have also suggested national legislation on my blog that should help to protect a parents right to their kids.

This happened to me too and this year's Mothers Day was horrible. Reading all these stories makes me want to vomit. The system doesn't protect us - it protects the lying, brainwashing parent, whether a father or a mother. <br />
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Parental alienation is legal in Australia and you can alienate your kids against the other parent - AND NOTHING WILL HAPPEN. The non-alienating parent will always lose.<br />
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I am all the time thinking about stopping this fight and this pain and I am pretty much at this point. No one cares and no one will help. Court system is a joke and a money maker for the government which gets more than half from everything you spend on lawyers through taxes - taxing both your earnings and your lawyer's.<br />
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The kids may or may not get through that, it's 50/50 chance. <br />
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My plan from now on is to send letters once a month, send presents for birthdays and Christmas, and keep my heart and dignity intact, live the good life. Help others less fortunate, volunteer and help kids who have real problems. Yes, I love my kids but right now anything I do results in another wave of brainwashing and alienation. There is no point going back to Court until there is better legislation, for example, if your ex violates a court order, they are no longer eligible to any child support payments (this is another excruciating tool, no matter how badly they treat you, you have to pay them money!)<br />
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Then probably the situation may change. Right now, all a parent has to do is to lie and alienate the kids against the other parent and then pocket child support payments until the kids are 18, both from this parent and the government. There is no way for an alienated parent to do anything.<br />
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So, if you still think courts can do anything, save your money! You'll get a court order but no one will help you to enforce it.<br />
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That's just the way it is.

the cops in texas DO support the parent being alienated, I have seen them grab screaming kids and PUT them in the cop car, then drive them to the other parent and PUT them in that parents car.. and that screaming kid yelling they want to go back to the other parent..
so.. I have NO idea that they did not do this in other states or countries

I live in Texas, and would love some support...... Any suggestions?

Let my add my heartfelt sympathy as well. I'm sure your children were just as upset on the inside as you were on the outside. They're in a horrible situation and they just did what they believed they had to do in order to keep their Dad happy. But I don't believe they were happy.<br />
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Ironic thing about parental alienation -- our children know our love for them is unconditional and we will always be there for them -- no matter how many times they reject and hurt us. They get a much different message from the alienating parent, so in order to keep both parents engaged they sumbit to the will of the alienating parent and trust in the unconditional love of the targeted parent. <br />
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I hope this helps. If you get a second, please check out our website at http://www.afamilysheartbreak.com. I'm confident our information and resources will help you.<br />
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Hang in there. It does get better, I promise.<br />
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Sincerely,<br />
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mike jeffries<br />
Author, A Family's Heartbreak: A Parent's Introduction to Parental Alienation

I am so sorry to hear what you are going through. I understand completely and have dreaded Mother's Day for the past few years. I have not seen my daughters, 15 and 16, since last summer, even though we live in the same town. And I have endured several years of this type of relationship, it being on their terms and I am walking on eggshells to please because I know if I dare deviate I will experience what I am experiencing now. They push and push and drive me to the edge, and then seem astonished that I react. I don't react anymore. I am empty inside. My ex-husband has convinced them I am, as he says in front of them, a crazy b****. All your words echo through me. I cannot talk to what few friends I have or family because they are tired of hearing about it, and I wonder if even they are thinking, "you must be a bad mom/person to be experiencing this." Let's face it that's what they think. I appear on the outside to have it somewhat together, but inside I am just surviving. I keep busy so I do not have to think too much. My thoughts are with you, and though I know you are hurting, I hope it is some comfort to know you are not the only one.