From an article on the BBC website today:
"When parents separate, where the children live, how much time they spend with Mum or Dad, can be hard to agree.Sometimes a child starts refusing to see their other parent.
This autumn, social workers who look after a child's interests in the family courts are being given new guidelines to help with these cases.
For the first time this will consider the possibility a child has been deliberately turned against one parent, by the other
Parental alienation, as it's called, will be just one of the options a social worker might consider.
It's a controversial concept which the courts have been trying to grapple with for years in cases where the parents are locked into entrenched legal action over contact.
There is no consensus and not a great deal of research, so how might it be considered by courts here?
The intensity or frequency of behaviour might be one of the ways this is set apart from the disagreements that are often part of separation.
"Think of a child experiencing a separation, the mother or father bad mouthing, or withholding warmth and affection unless they agree with an argument," says Sarah Parsons of the Children and Families Court Advisory Service.
"If it's repeated it can have an invasive, intrusive effect on wellbeing. A child can think the only way to stay safe is to side with one parent and reject the other."
See more HERE