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Potential alienation?

Discussion forum for parents in Australia

Casual scribe

Potential alienation?



Im new here and reaching out because I am deeply concerned about my 10 year old daughter. I have two daughters 10 and 12 who live with my ex-wife and spend every other weekend and half the school holidays with me. 


I have had a pretty good relationship with the children despite the frequent undermining of my parenting by my ex. She is still very hostile and does not value me as a parent to our children at all. 


My daughters behaviour has been getting increasingly worse lately. She comes to my house, has very little to say and behaves in a passive-aggressive manner. When I ask her a question, I will get a few options "I don't know", "fine" or she just ignores me. She will sit and stare at the floor rather than engage in family activities. If we go to the park, she will sit off to the side and not engage in any activities. 


To make matters worse, the last time we did a change over she was refusing to get out of my ex's car. She stated she doesn't want to go with me. Then when I ask her what the issue is and tell her I need to know what's wrong otherwise I cant change anything for her, she just says "I dont know". 


It's like she is putting in every effort to be miserable at my house to maintain her loyalty to her mother. I really struggle to understand this and its now impacting my mental health. Its heart breaking for me as I have done my best to stay in her life despite the divorce... I need some advice on what I should do... should I stop seeing her for a while to see if things get better? Should I just put up with it in the hope that things will improve? Help please?!?!?

Prolific scribe

Re: Potential alienation?

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Hi @SaadDaad and welcome to our online community.


I'm sorry to hear about your daughter and the concern you have for her. I can only imagine how hurt and confused you must feel right now. I was wondering if you had tried to speak to your ex-wife about this at all?


It can be so hard going through such a hard time on your own, so I just wanted to see if you had any supports around you right now? Is there someone you feel comfortable talking to about this? If you would like to talk to someone, it might be worth reaching out to a service like Parentline where they may be able to help you identify the next steps.


Or if you're up for a bit of reading, the Raising Children's Network has a number of great articles on Co-Parenting and even Helping children adjust after separation or divorce.


We are all here for you.

Casual scribe

Re: Potential alienation?

Thanks for your reply. My ex wife and I are in no way amicable. I have attempted to talk to her about this but I just get the "it's your fault" from her which isn't helpful at all. 


I really don't know what to do for her to help her and improve our relationship. I'll check out the links you have provided. I do have some support, so thats a good thing, but its still difficult as nobody has been through this....