Chinese Whispers and Chinese Walls: The Language and Landscape of Parental Alienation

I am often asked by parents of older children, how come their child has not returned to them when they are clearly old enough to look back and understand what has happened.

Answering this questions is not difficult when one considers the way in which the alienating parent colonises the mind of the child, dividing it repeatedly into good and bad, black and white, right and wrong through repeated whispers of distortion, until the internalised landscape looks like a wall has been built into it.

The issue is that the child, repeatedly exposed to the Chinese whispers of the parent, does not know that the wall is there and believes that their mind is wholly their own and independent of any of the whispering which has been going on in their lives, sometimes for many years. Add to that the upholding of the whispers of distortion through the trips and traps which are cleverly laid by the alienating parent and what you have is a dynamic which is almost impossible to detect. And so the child grows, unsuspecting that the wall in their mind through which no positive information about the rejected parent can pass, is even there.

Working with people whose minds are scaffolded by Chinese walls requires the practitioner to tread extraordinarily carefully. This is not a landscape through which one stampedes crusader like ripping down walls and calling out whispers. If one tries, the wall solidifies and the whispers intensify. This world is one in which quiet footsteps lead to dawning realisations and in which walls which are not even known about, are removed by the individual encounter with perspective.

Those who cling to wholly right and wholly wrong narratives are those with walls inside their minds which hold them fast and steady in their self belief. Such people are often rigid in their thinking, highly defended and protecting themselves against shame and guilt. Behind the wall in the alienated child’s mind is a reservoir of shame and guilt, which laps against the defences and at times threatens to break through. Many alienated children grow up to become rejected parents and it is within that group of rejected parents who cling to the right/wrong dynamic the tightest, that the Chinese whispers and Chinese walls are most regularly seen.

Helping rejected parents requires a deftness of hand and a kindness of heart. It requires an examination of the thinking patterns of the parent and their capacity to hold ambivalent thoughts. As we do this work we are seeking to understand whether this parent is a now adult alienated child who has been prepared for their fate by the laying down of the wall in their mind in their youth. There is a high proportion of alienated adult children in the overall group of parents who are rejected and when we look closer at the Chinese whisper and Chinese wall analogy it is not difficult to see why.

I have written many times about the way in which alienated children become alienated parents but not much about the Chinese whispers and Chinese wall analogy which is something that we see repeatedly in the recovering alienated child. Helping to take that wall in the child’s mind down is one of the ways that we build into our work a trans-generational intervention which prevents the child from becoming one of the the next generation of rejected parents

Karen Woodall

Screen Shot 2018-03-04 at 09.23.16I am often asked by parents of older children, how come their child has not returned to them when they are clearly old enough to look back and understand what has happened.

Answering this questions is not difficult when one considers the way in which the alienating parent colonises the mind of the child, dividing it repeatedly into good and bad, black and white, right and wrong through repeated whispers of distortion, until the internalised landscape looks like a wall has been built into it.

The issue is that the child, repeatedly exposed to the Chinese whispers of the parent, does not know that the wall is there and believes that their mind is wholly their own and independent of any of the whispering which has been going on in their lives, sometimes for many years.  Add to that the upholding of the whispers of distortion through the trips and…

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About madisonelizabethbaylis

Father of Kevin, Jenvey and Maddie. Being alienated from Maddie due to the fact that after her mother divorced me and remarried she cut me out of my daughter´s life. I then rekindled my relationship with the mother of my boys and since then Melissa is hell bend on allienating and abusing Maddie
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