Parental Alienation is Domestic Violence

The US Department of Justice provides significant confirmation that parental alienation is domestic violence by noting previously on a prior version of its website that:
This prior version of the DoJ web page is documented here  USA Today Article and in   other web sites that copied from the DoJ such as r-u-safe  and ffamily-services-inc and  safehouse

Exactly. In parental alienation, children are isolated from a parent (which is family) and usually half of the extended family.

Admittedly, the exact phrase "parental alienation" is not used, but "damaging one's relationship with his or her children" is simply alternative wording.



This is consistent with Dr. Childress referring to it as the trans-generational transmission of attachment trauma.

See also Dr. Bernet's 2016 paper entitled "Child Affected by Parental Alienation Distress." It includes a discussion of the inter-relationship of DV and PA.

The Family Courts of Australia note that family violence includes "preventing the family member from making or keeping connections with his or her family."

The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence notes that domestic violence includes "Telling the victim that they are a bad parent or threatening to hurt, kill, or take away their children." They go on to discuss that psychological abuse includes "Isolating the victim from friends and/or family".


Further, in her Ted Talk, Dr. Harman at the University of Colorado says that "parental alienation is a form of domestic violence". Also see her talk at the second annual conference for the parental alienation study group:

Dr Harman, DV, PASG Conference 2018



See also Dr. Harman's presentation at the Reykjavik conference - "Parental alienation A Form of Intimate Partner Violence" and also her talk at the Simply Parent 2018 conference on Power and Reciprocity In Parental Alienation

According to Dr. Castelloe, "Behavioral Scientist Steve Maraboli describes it as 'an emotional act of violence' aimed at an adult, but one that critically wounds a child."

Here is a discussion about PA being prosecuted under domestic violence laws.

Edward Kruk discusses parental alienation being domestic violence in psychology today.

Dr. Craig Childress discusses PA and domestic violence: "The “parental alienation” process is most definitely a variant of domestic violence, expressing themes of power, control, and domination. The pathology of “parental alienation” is the manifestation of the narcissistically organized psychopathology of the “alienating” parent who is using the child as the weapon of spousal battery to inflict immense emotional and psychological suffering on the other spouse as revenge for the narcissistic injury of the divorce. The pathology of “parental alienation” is among the most extreme forms of domestic violence, killing the child of the other spouse as a means to inflict suffering on the other spouse for having the effrontery of divorcing them. “How dare you divorce me. I will kill your beloved child as revenge. Aren’t you sorry now that you left me.” The pathology of “parental alienation” is domestic violence in the most extreme.""

Here is a a discussion of using courts to inflict domestic violence "The Courts Co-opted to decimate"

Dr. Harmon further discusses PA as domestic violence in an article: "Domestic violence is defined as a pattern of behavior that involves violence or other abuse by one individual against another in a domestic setting and it can take many forms (e.g. physical, financial, or psychological) and have many outcomes ... the alienating behaviors may be blatant or subtle, but they are nearly always intentional. What has concerned me in some of my discussions about parental alienation with other professional colleagues is that while many of them agree that the alienating parent's behaviors are negative, they believe they should be considered 'justifiable' because they are that parent's 'only defense' when they are in an abusive relationship. This sanctioning of parental alienating behaviors is troubling to me for two reasons: 1. The belief reflects an assumption that the alienator is or has been the victim of violence in the relationship. Results of my own research and interviews with alienated parents have demonstrated that the reverse is actually true. Parents who alienate often engaged in other forms of domestic violence (e.g. physical of stalking) before their relationship with the targeted parent ended. Parental alienation is a continuation, in a different form, of the abuse. Careful and critical scrutiny of abuse claims (e.g. police reports or hospital records) can elucidate the truth, if the time is taken to do so ... I hope parental alienation will be recognized as  a form of domestic violence, and thus, as a crime punishable by law."

Dr. Craig Childress has written about PA and domestic violence: "The time for recognizing the pathology of “parental alienation” as domestic spousal abuse is long past overdue – long past overdue.  I deeply apologize that I have been delayed for so long, but there was much to accomplish.  But it is time now to fully and completely recognize the pathology of “parental alienation” as a severe and heinous form of emotional-psychological domestic violence, and to respond accordingly.  Professional psychology must recognize this extremely destructive form of psychological child abuse and this emotionally violent form spousal abuse.  Professional ignorance and collusion with the domestic violence, the spousal abuse, and the psychological abuse of the child is abhorrent and can no longer be tolerated. The pathology of “parental alienation” is domestic violence, pure and simple."

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