Your child’s other parent can find a whole host of ways to try to keep you from contacting and building your relationship with your kid. One method is through factitious disorder by proxy. Here, the parent makes claims that the child suffers from physical or psychological illness, all with the intention of deceiving you. This condition is nothing short of child abuse in itself, and if left unchecked it can cause extensive harm to your child and your relationship with him or her.
How do you protect your child?
First, you’re going to have to prove that the allegations that have been made are indicative of factitious disorder. In order for there to be a formal diagnosis, each of the following must be shown:
- Deceptive falsification of physical or psychological symptoms of injury or illness
- The parent presents the child as suffering from those injuries or illnesses
- The deception continues to occur even when there’s no external motivation to engage in the behavior
- There is no other mental health condition that accounts for the behavior
Gather the evidence that you need
That might all sound straightforward, but how do you actually go about proving it? You may have to ask a court to order an evaluation of the other parent, or you may need to ask the court to allow a medical or psychological examination of your child.
You’ll need to be armed with some evidence of falsification or deception before you move the court for one of these examinations, though, so be diligent in assessing the facts of your case. An attorney who has handled these kinds of issues before may be able to help you conduct that analysis and craft the persuasive legal strategy that you need on your side.