You are wondering what narcissistic parental alienation syndrome is, aren’t you? While the term “parental alienation” is well-known among parents and legal professionals, you may not be aware that there is a related disorder known as Narcissistic Parental Alienation Syndrome (NPAS).
NPAS is a pernicious condition in which children of parents with narcissistic personality disorders are manipulated into rejecting the other parent, negatively impacting the quality of relationships and resulting in mental health problems for all parties involved.
In this article, we will discuss what NPAS is, how it can affect children and parents who have grown apart, and what can be done in these situations.
What Is Narcissistic Parental Alienation Syndrome (NPAS)?
One parent may use anger or resentment toward the other parent, or the desire to gain an advantage in a custody dispute, to manipulate a child or children into rejecting the other parent, a phenomenon known as “Narcissistic Parental Alienation Syndrome” (NPAS).
The term “NPAS” is controversial because it implies the alienating parent suffers from a narcissistic personality disorder (NPD).
Numerous factors, such as the child’s own emotions and experiences, the quality of the child’s relationship with each parent, and the actions of the alienating parent, can contribute to the development of parental alienation, a phenomenon long recognized in the field of psychology.
What Are The Causes Of NPAS?
The complex causes of “Narcissistic Parental Alienation Syndrome” (NPAS) include high-conflict divorce or separation, certain personality disorders, parental insecurity, the child’s own feelings, and negative parental behavior, such as badmouthing the other parent.
However, “NPAS” is not an officially recognized diagnosis, and it implies that the alienating parent has a narcissistic personality disorder (NPD), a controversial assertion.
As the causes of parental alienation can be multifactorial and case-specific, it is essential to collaborate with qualified professionals to determine the root causes of parental alienation and to develop a plan to address the needs of the children and the family as a whole.
Signs Of Narcissistic Parental Alienation Syndrome In A Child’s Behavior
There are common signs of parental alienation in a child’s behavior that parents, caregivers, or mental health professionals should be aware of, even though “Narcissistic Parental Alienation Syndrome” (NPAS) is not an officially recognized diagnosis.
Some of the warning signs of parental alienation include the child’s irrational rejection of a once-loved parent, the child’s refusal to spend time with the rejected parent, the child’s defense of the alienating parent’s actions, the child’s criticism of the rejected parent, and the child’s inability to empathize with the rejected parent’s feelings.
Strategies To Help Children Cope With NPAS
Despite the fact that NPAS is not an officially recognized diagnosis, there are strategies that can help children cope with parental alienation.
It is important for children and families experiencing parental alienation to seek the assistance of a qualified mental health professional or family counselor in order to receive guidance and support.
Children can cope with Narcissistic Parental Alienation Syndrome by encouraging communication, providing reassurance, maintaining a consistent routine, avoiding negative talk, focusing on the child’s well-being, and considering legal action. However, it is essential to remember that every circumstance is unique and may necessitate a customized approach.
How to Help A Child Recover from NPAS
Recovering from “Narcissistic Parental Alienation Syndrome” (NPAS) can be a long and complex process, but there are steps that can be taken to help a child move forward and heal. Here are some suggestions for helping a child recover from NPAS:
- Get professional support: Work with a qualified mental health professional or family counselor who can provide support and guidance to the child and family.
- Encourage a healthy relationship with both parents: Encourage the child to have a healthy relationship with both parents and avoid speaking negatively about either parent in front of the child.
- Provide reassurance: Provide reassurance to the child that they are loved by both parents and that they are not to blame for the situation.
- Help the child process their feelings: Encourage the child to express their feelings and thoughts about the situation, and help them understand that it’s okay to feel sad or angry.
Resources for Parents Impacted by Narcissistic Parental Alienation Syndrome
There are available resources for parents affected by NPAS. Parental Alienation Awareness Organization (PAAO), National Parent Helpline, American Psychological Association (APA), Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC), National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), and your local family court are some of these resources.
These resources offer families affected by parental alienation support, education, and advocacy. Working with a qualified mental health professional or family counselor can aid in the development of a plan tailored to the family’s needs, allowing them to heal and progress in a positive and healthy manner.
Treatment Options for NPAS
Now that you have all the information about NPAS by reading this blog post, we will continue with some treatment options for it. Since “Narcissistic Parental Alienation Syndrome” (NPAS) is not a medically recognized disorder, there is no established treatment for it.
However, legal intervention, co-parenting counseling, individual therapy, and family therapy are all potentially beneficial treatment options for children experiencing parental alienation. Professionals like therapists, family counselors, and lawyers can help families meet the needs of their children and themselves.
In conclusion, “Narcissistic Parental Alienation Syndrome” (NPAS) describes instances in which one parent manipulates a child to reject the other parent. However, this term is controversial and is not officially recognized and that’s why there is no established treatment for it.
But need not be afraid, you can protect the child’s rights and ensure a healthy and positive relationship between your child and you with these tips from Janet McCullar in mind!
FAQs about NPAS
Is NPAS a recognized medical diagnosis?
Unfortunately, NPAS is not a recognized medical diagnosis.
Why do kids often turn against one or both of their parents?
Parental alienation often results from a combination of factors, including a tumultuous divorce or separation, the presence of a personality disorder, parental insecurity, the child’s own emotions, and parental behavior like constant negative talk about the other parent.
How can we recognize Narcissistic Parental Alienation Syndrome in a child’s actions?
Rejection of a parent who was once loved, an inability to articulate negative feelings toward that parent, and the use of more mature language to describe those feelings are all possible indicators of parental alienation in a child.
How can we best support children who are experiencing NPAS?
Seeking professional help, encouraging communication, providing reassurance, maintaining a consistent routine, avoiding negative talk, focusing on the child’s well-being, and considering legal action are all possible strategies for helping children cope with NPAS.
What help is available for parents dealing with the effects of NPAS?
Parental Alienation Awareness Organization (PAAO), the National Parent Helpline, the American Psychological Association (APA), and the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC) are some possible resources for parents affected by NPAS.
What are the available options for treating NPAS?
Family therapy, individual therapy, counseling for parents who are co-parenting, and legal intervention are all potential treatments for NPAS.
Could NPAS be avoided?
The best way to protect a child from NPAS is to work toward a harmonious co-parenting relationship, refrain from speaking negatively about the child’s other parent, and offer consistent care and love.
How reversible is Narcissistic Parental Alienation Syndrome?
Although treating NPAS and reversing its effects can be a lengthy and challenging process, it is possible to assist the child in healing and moving forward in a positive and healthy way with the right treatment and support.
How do psychiatrists, psychologists, and other mental health professionals help with NPAS?
Support, guidance, and treatment from mental health professionals can be invaluable for children and families dealing with NPAS.
When it comes to NPAS, how should the law be applied?
The legal system can help reduce the prevalence of NPAS by safeguarding children’s rights and facilitating constructive co-parenting arrangements.