Unfortunately, while securing themselves a safe Attachment to bury their fears, the controlling or Alienating parent kills off the healthier love in the highly conditional relationship with them as well as with the other parent.
In this account, Peter is described as controlling his wife while Sarah as willingly devoted to him. But the dynamics of coercive control are to take you in, not just to cut you off. Is Sarah taken in by her father or a willing partner for him? Even if she is willing, is this kind of loving ethical or healthy for a teenage girl or her father? If this relationship served sexual needs rather than just emotional ones, we would certainly know what to think of it.
These are very tricky issues to tease apart: What is good influence, and what is harmful influence? What is mindfully intentional and done on purpose, and what is unconsciously driven unintended consequences? What is a conditional coerced controlling recruited relationship, and what is a voluntary genuinely loving liberating Attachment? (Steve Hassan’s ‘Influence Continuum‘ helps separate what is healthy from what is unhealthy.)
Sarah may have been, probably still is, convinced that she is responsible for her own choices. But she has lost her authentic identity beneath the devoted loyalty. She is married, but still significantly cut off from the rest of the world and the more complete life she could have had. This is unconsciously intended coercive control of Sarah as much as of her mother. Maybe if Sarah has children of her own, she will suddenly recognise that something wrong happened to her and change. But:
The deadly pattern has every chance of being repeated in each generation too. This short Brazilian video aptly calls this: A Morte Inventada. An invented death. Instead of working through the pain of life, it buries it. Parental Alienation is an invented death to the lives and relationships of all those involved: the children, the Alienated parent … and the Alienator too.