Gaslighting is Abuse

The Kronzek Firm 

Gaslighting refers to a specific type of emotional abuse where a person imposes false stories on others in order to push their manipulative agenda. This is especially dangerous when dealing with impressionable children. Our divorce and custody attorneys often see gaslighting abuse coming from narcissistic spouses and sometimes from parents that exhibit antisocial behaviors. . But they aren’t the only perpetrators of that kind of abuse. 

Children naturally look up to their parents for stability, support, and guidance. When a parent is engaging in emotionally abusive behavior towards their child, or toward the other parent, this can leave permanent scars.

Many Michigan parents have experienced their co-parent gaslighting their child. It often comes in the form of the other parent creating the fallacy that you are bad and that the child should not live with you, should not love you, should not trust you and should not want to look up to you. Everything is always your fault! 

My Kid Doesn’t Want To Live With Me 

Unfortunately, kids are often put in the middle by their parents during a divorce. However, it can be even worse when a child is being emotionally abused and gaslit by the other parent. 

The other parent might play the victim and act like you are the problem. We call it the blame game. They often act as a “friend” and give their child lots of treats and toys to win their affection. Any good parent in Royal Oak, Birmingham, or West Bloomfield knows that real parenting can be tough. Good parents have to discipline, make rules, and support a child through difficult times. A bad parent just gives candy and bribes the child for their love and attention. In the end, parents cannot buy their children. 

Of course children want to go with the lollipop parent that gives them everything they want, even if it isn’t good for them. When you are trying your best to be a stable rock for your child during a difficult time in your family, you may wonder what harm the other parent is doing to your kid. 

What Does a Gaslighting Parent Do To My Child?

A gaslighting parent will tell a child that their understanding of various situations are wrong and will substitute a fake story to best suit their personal agenda. Our family law attorneys see the same scenarios over and over again. Blaming the other parent for the breakup of the family. Blaming the other parent for their financial woes. Claiming the other parent is out to get them or to ruin them financially. It just never stops. We get it.  

When this happens, a child can start to suffer from poor self-esteem. Not only that, but the child could develop problems trusting the adults in their lives. Anxiety, depression, and attachment disorders are more common in children whose parents are emotionally abusive. And make no mistake about it. Gaslighting is emotional abuse whether it’s done intentionally or unintentionally. 

If your kid is coming up with weird stories, seems confused, or has exhibited any new emotional problems, it is possible that the other parent has gaslit your child. Taking action immediately can prevent future harm to your child. 

Call The Kronzek Firm to Help Stop a Gaslighting or Alienating Parent

We are here to help with your family law questions! If you are wondering how to stop a gaslighting parent, seek expert advice. We’ve helped thousands of other Michigan clients over the decades with family law matters.  To set up your free consultation today, call 248-479-6200. We’re available 24/7, including nights and weekends for crisis intervention.