I will write in detail about the points below in future posts. This is a summary of what I believe is most important.
What NOT to do:
Don’t take the rejection personally. It is truly not about you. Although you are the one being ignored or attacked, it is nothing to do with the reality of who you are. Your child is projecting onto you the fantasy created by the alienator. Your child does not have the means to resist the alienator’s mind control and has been manipulated to go along with the alienator’s view. He or she may or may not be able to perceive the truth that you are not a bad person, but the alienator has made it too difficult for the child to act in accord with that truth.
Above all, do not reject your child for rejecting you! Although it may seem that this is what your child wants, and it may appear to provide peace temporarily, please don’t let anyone convince you to do this, or give in to the temptation to do so when you are being attacked. Remember that your child is the victim of the alienator’s manipulation. Your child is acting self-destructively. Your child needs to know that you still love him or her, no matter what, and that you want to reconnect, no matter what.
Do not simply accept the situation and wait for your child to “come around”. Do not expect a change when your child turns 16, or 18, or goes to college, or any particular milestone that is generally considered to signal independence or autonomy. This will not happen. It won’t happen because parental alienation is not a developmental phenomenon. It is not a stage that children grow out of. It is the result of the undermining and sabotage of your relationship by the alienator, and requires an active response.
Don’t let your child provoke you into trying to justify yourself. Don’t try to prove your case to your child with rational argument. Don’t try to show your child that he or she is wrong. It will only exhaust and diminish you, and will most likely drive your child further away. This is because A: You have been rejected as unloving, selfish, or untrustworthy or crazy and so anything you say will be automatically dismissed, no matter how objectively true it is. B: Your child has been forced to make a huge investment in the alienator’s version of events, and to consider the real truth is too threatening. So what do you do instead? Just be your loving self, and let your actions speak for you. Your child’s distorted thinking will inevitably be challenged by others, and others may be more effective than you because your child may hear them without prejudice. I do not mean that you should not address misstatements of fact when they arise. I mean that any campaign to logically prove to your child that you should not be rejected is most likely doomed, especially if the argument is made by you.
Do not suggest to your child that he or she is brainwashed. No matter how gently or sympathetically you try to say this, I guarantee it will backfire. No-one, child or adult, wants to believe they could be brainwashed. It feels insulting, humiliating, and frightening to think that you might not have control of your own mind. Perhaps because your child secretly knows that it is true, he or she is likely to dig in deeper and go further than ever in rejecting you, coming up with new accusations and criticisms beyond those already made by the alienator, so that he or she can appear to be an independent thinker.
Don’t give up! Never, ever, ever give up. No-one can know when the seeds you have planted will bear fruit, or predict how the future will unfold. Again, research has shown that your efforts do communicate your love to your child and make a vital difference, even when you can’t see it.