Marriage-Divorce Coaching


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Due to health reasons, the Divorce Support Plus website was closed several years ago, but Sharon Shenker is returning to her passion of helping others through family reconstruction, or even better, saving families by reconstructing the relationship(s).

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Friday, May 27, 2011

Parental Alienation Syndrome

A lot of couples going through a separation and divorce have so much emotional baggage still from the marriage that they confuse issues and end up in high conflict with their former partner instead of being able to build a healthy co-parenting relationship. The children suffer so much!

This sort of thing happens to way too many families, and as a mother and former preschool teacher, that is part of the reason I chose the career, or niche of working with families experiencing relationship difficulties such as pending divorce or going through one. I wanted and still want to protect the children. They are so ill-equipped to go through a divorce and family reconstruction.

Children are so helpless from getting sucked into whatever drama is going on between their parents. And, if one of their parents' is more than just difficult to get along with because of his or her anger, but has motives of their own to become what is known as the 'alienating parent' in a case of parental alienation, the kids need some serious help.

The most interesting type of help I'm referring to is a program I recently became aware of. You can read about it yourself in an article from the Globe and Mail, called "Judge rules father brainwashed son in hating mother" dated May 15, 2008.

The article states that "This is a precedent in Canada - the first time a Canadian court has recognized the lack of resources to deal with the disease of parental alienation and answered it with a private remedy - the Family Workshop for Alienated Children," when a judge ordered a "13-year-old Ontario boy whose domineering father systematically brainwashed him into hating his mother can be flown against his will to a U.S. facility that deprograms children who suffer from parental alienation, an Ontario Superior Court judge has ruled." Amazing!

I am attending a Symposium for Parental Alienation Syndrome this weekend, here in Montreal's Dawson College, and I truly look forward to hearing the esteemed experts in the field. I was honored to be personally invited to attend such an invitation only event, and will surely share some information here.

The Keynote Speaker for Saturday is William Bernet, M.D. Other presenters are going to be Douglas Darnall, and Ph.D., S. Richard Sauber, Ph.D.

On Sunday, the Keynote Speaker will be someone I actually know and have worked with on a family case, Abe Worenklein, Ph.D. Other speakers that day will be Terence W. Campbell, Ph.D., and Dr. Michael Bone, along with the Conference Mediator, Glenn R. Caddy, Ph.D. What a list of esteemed professionals!

I certainly hope that none of my readers are living through such a traumatic and damaging life experience. If anyone is, please know that I feel for you and wish for you to get the help you and your loved ones need.

I will post more on this topic in the coming weeks.

Sharon Shenker, Family Life & Relationships Coach
P.S. The picture with this article is of my daughters close to thirty years ago, when they were living through their own parents' disturbing divorce. Fortunately, they each survived and became wonderful people. One of my girls is a Youth Worker in group homes, and the other used to be a Paralegal in a Family Law firm, and is now the proud Mom of my little grandson, and wife of a great guy who is the manager of a bank branch. So... we can (usually) survive and thrive despite divorce!