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Aside from memberships in leading psychological science groups such as the American Psychological Association, and memberships with Parental Alienation professional groups (clinicians, judges, scientists, lawers), I continue to study and develop professional skillsets in the understanding of PA and how it affects families, and how it can be mitigated within the court system.

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Module 1: How Can Parental Alienation Happen?

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Credit: Michael Bone, Ph.D

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The coronavirus crisis, paradoxically, may be an opportunity to find new sources of meaning. Psychological research on past financial disasters may offer guidance on how people will respond to the sudden economic calamity caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

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The COVID-19 crisis has shuttered businesses and led to massive numbers of layoffs nearly overnight. As of April 2, Americans filed a record-breaking 6.6 million unemployment claims in one week, according to the Department of Labor (PDF, 743KB)

The U.S. Federal Reserve estimated that 47 million people might lose their jobs in the second quarter of 2020, translating to a 32.1% unemployment rate. That would far overshoot the peak unemployment rate of the Great Recession (10% in October 2009, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics) and even of the Great Depression (24.9% in 1933).Despite differences between this economic crisis and previous recessions, psychological research can provide some insight into the behavioral and mental health impacts of financial loss. Key findings include:

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What is Parental Alienation?

Bernet et al (2010) considers a primary feature of parental alienation where a child whose parents are engaged in a high conflict divorce or separation allies himself or herself strongly with one parent while rejecting the relationship with the other previously loved parent without legitimate justification.

Parental Alienation

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A parent need not be a psychologist to understand that the stress of pre-divorce or the divorce process can take its toll on kids emotionally and physically. Because many of my cases involve High Conflict divorces, there is often seen in the kids of these families both emotional and somatic complaints. It is very important for parents to be mindful of these complaints and conditions with their children and seek out appropriate resources.  In my practice, I have tried to integrate both the legal aspects of divorce practice with the clinical supports that are available from clinicians that I know and respect.

The article below discusses the concerns of psychological effects on kids of divorce.

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How Will Temporary Court Closures Due to COVID-19 Affect Family Law Cases?

Many clients of our firm are asking this important question: What is the immediate impact on my case if my courthouse is closed for weeks or months, starting right now?

It has been only since last Friday that the various counties in Illinois announced via email and posts on their websites that the courthouses were to be closed for about 30-45 days, while the COVID-19 pandemic works its way through Illinois. Many of our cases were set for important hearings with our judges in March and April, and now these cases will have to be reset. Some will be reset by the courts, and others are being reset by agreement with opposing counsel.

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” Top Divorce Law Blogs

We ranked the top divorce law blogs based on website authority, inbound links from other sites, and Twitter followers. The following blogs are regularly updated to provide valuable information on divorce law and insights into a career at a family law firm. ” 
Illinois Divorce Law Blog 28 5.02 66 5

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I recently had an interesting discussion at one of the courthouses about Parental Alienation. The issue for the moment was whether PA was considered “real” from a clinical point of view, and whether the DSM had a diagnostic category for Parental Alienation.  As any reader of Illinois Divorce Lawyer Blog knows, PA is real, and I have spent many years working with and managing PA cases for my clients, along with being involved in research and professional groups associated with PA from both a legal and clinical standpoint.

As these matters go, the discussion was spirited, and my mind went to the efforts of those like Dr. Bernet and Amy Baker, who made efforts to include diagnostic codes for PA in the newest DSM updates.  Here is a summary, below:

PA  :  It is a term used by mental health and legal professionals to describe both a complex form of child psychological abuse (i.e., isolating, exploiting/corrupting, terrorizing) and a diagnostic label for identifying a pathologically disturbed parent-child relationship between an alienating parent and a child victim.
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Everyday Trauma: Induced Psychological Splitting in Children of Divorce and Separation

Credit: https://karenwoodall.blog

Understanding the impact of divorce and separation on children takes us down new pathways of understanding of induced psychological splitting, its manifestation in families and the every trauma it causes which has been hidden in plain sight for decades.

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