Posts in "Advocacy" tag

Family Stability

Is it good for you to know what’s coming?  What you can expect, or better yet, what you can or cannot control? I believe so, and I believe informing families improves stability.

Of course.  So that means it is true for your children as well.   Most of the concepts I’m exploring here have to do with helping us do better for ourselves but especially for our children.  If you are not a parent, but support children or parents in your community, you may learn about concepts or resources that you’ll want to share.

In my own journey I realized there was a lot of information and guidance missing that I needed at a critical time, so I set out to have questions answered and to identify the best resources that others might need as well.

If you would like to contribute to the public education now available through My Advocate Center to help more families avoid the pitfalls seen in our court system, please consider donating here. This method is not yet tax-deductible, so let me know if you prefer to use a method that will allow you to receive the deduction through one of our partner organizations.


What I learned is worth sharing.  The issues I address are meant to invite debate about more positive ways to resolve conflict and overcome challenges – or challenging people – with a central focus on the needs of children.

Just knowing the right questions to ask, knowing that accountability is possible, finding honest and trustworthy support…can make all the difference in how we function in life, how we protect our health and finances, and especially around how we care for and nurture our children.

When we are informed and well supported, we can properly set and follow through on expectations.  That benefits our children because we all have greater peace of mind.  With the right expectations, support, know-how, peace of mind…we can perform better, make better decisions, and ideally deliver what is needed.

So the conversation here is about empowering, creating new solutions and building toward better peace of mind, better health, greater productivity…and, yes, more laughter and joy.

Keeping it simple:  when we are at our best, we can serve God, each other and our children better.

Many of my topics come from daily life, as well as from being provoked in social media by friends I agree with and others I don’t.   My posts have less to do with what is reported in the news, and more to do with how I see us treating each other – and how that affects our children.

Many of the questions I raise also grow out of my observations of my own children and of other children & families:

When you learn to read the faces of children, you’ll see that they are telling you a lot about yourself.

Just know that if I call you out, I’m calling myself out as well.  Being transparent seems to work for me so I’m going with it.  None of us are perfect, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t keep learning and striving to do more with what we have, and to help our kids do better than we’ve done in the past.

What you can expect from me is candor, challenge, spirit (sometimes becoming “fight” when called for) and a genuine desire to both learn from my own mistakes and to help others do the same.

This desire gave birth to Connect | Inform | Empower and the warehouse of solutions and resources now called My Advocate Center.

On this blog and on My Advocate Center’s blog you’ll see a broad range of discussions, from children’s interests and parenting issues, including legal advocacy for parents and children, to issues that go to the heart of both social and business relationships.  I’ll probably get Global and Political and Spiritual at times – but always practical, always balanced and quick to consider perspectives other than my own.

What I ask of you as a reader is to please consider different sides of issues, and to help me Stand in the Gap that exists around many of the problems we face in this Community of ours.  Let’s set a better example: one we want our children to model after and carry forward with our help.

Your constructive feedback is always welcome here, and positive contributions are a great thing!

Thank you,

Deb Beacham

Deb Beacham, My Advocate Center
Deb Beacham, My Advocate Center

 

Protecting Even the Little Things, Like Freedom

You would never expect me to say freedom is a little thing, would you?

For many parents, children, grandparents and even for their advocates, freedom to speak and freedom to protect are rights that we can lose, even right here in the U.S.A. That’s not the way it’s supposed to work, so we’re not prepared for it when this happens.

It’s not the best news to share that this is happening to us, no matter what we have going for us, no matter where we live or how innocent or good we are. We just don’t talk about it openly, and typically because we’re told not to… But when this silencing of parents and children happens…to avoid exposure and reporting of misconduct…what you see from the outside is a look of confusion, shock, depression or something you might say is off, but whatever it is, you want no part of it!

So I appreciate little things like being able to take rides on any open road, to open windows and to feel the cool air, and to enjoy kids waving their arms and singing loudly.  They should always have this freedom to be kids and to be unencumbered with news of the challenges we adults face.

If you know how to make this easier for them…and have the means to support families in protecting these freedoms and the childhood pleasures most of us have taken for granted, please use your voice.

Help us keep the freedoms of childhood as they should be — building blocks for a healthy life.

Deb Beacham_Freedom to be a kid

Please connect with me here and off-line if you have ideas you’d like to share!

Thank you,

Deb Beacham

Deb Beacham

 

Launching Big Ideas: Happy New Year!

If you’re going to go…go BIG!

ProAdvocateRadio Launching Soon_2015

Here’s to hoping that whatever big ideas and plans you have for this year, that you are confident, supported, excited, and ready to launch in this New Year of 2015.

Looking forward to learning what you’re up to and hearing about what inspires you; so let’s get together soon!

Stay safe and peaceful, my friends and family,

Deb Beacham

Deb Beacham

Are you surprised?

I keep hearing from people that they had no idea what was going on, what was happening to “good families” all around them.

It’s because we’re told to not say anything, to keep the “drama” behind closed doors – meaning behind the doors of certain lawyer’s offices!   Or behind the door of the custody evaluator who says things that make you think one moment that you and your kids will be fine, and then make you feel “crazy” the next.   If you say anything to people who have never witnessed this, they look at you in a strange way…and wonder.

So I shared this through our audience at My Advocate Center:

For those of you in our community who are just now hearing about “problems” with how family conflict is being handled – or mishandled – we appreciate you stopping by.

Much of what is happening is just bizarre. This makes no sense…and you can’t fathom that these things would be going on.

If you read a report about “damages” and the location was shown to be some third-world country, you would believe it, right? But hearing that this is happening in your own backyard, where we have rules and laws that should apply…can make you want to shake the thought from your mind, and then move on.

* Please pause a moment. *

The parents in the cases we report on were like you, and not that long ago.

They never dreamed things like this could happen.

They would not have believed that they could be cut off from children, trapped in a legal process that appears to be never-ending, bankrupted or caused to lose homes – just because they realized they had to hire a lawyer and go to court to handle a situation.

If you want to learn more, and to find a way to help these good parents and their children, but without reading about the more stress-inducing situations, please let us know.

LEGISLATORS & State Capitol staff:

Thank you for taking the time.
Thank you for seeing past the “drama” you read about and can’t relate to.

Thank you for considering the needs of your constituents and our children…over what might be easy for your peers.

Please keep asking questions, and looking for answers. They are available.

Coaching Kids who Need Support

Deb Beacham advocates for children having the best that both parents have to offer.

Have you heard the saying, “It takes a Village to raise a child?”

If you’re a kid then maybe you have not heard this – but I’d like for you to think about it for a minute:

This is an idea that many people believe to be true.  This is because we all believe that you – our children – are our most important purpose in life.

NOTHING is more important than your well-being.  You matter, and you matter BIG time!

Kids: let us know if you don't have what you need, or if you are trying to reconnect with a parent you lost during a divorce.
Kids: let us know if you don’t have what you need, or if you are trying to reconnect with a parent you lost during a divorce.

 

We adults have to work together to help you grow up strong, healthy and able to enjoy life and all that is wonderful about you, and about our world.  You deserve to feel safe and secure, and to be peaceful in your surroundings, and you deserve the best that your parents and family can give you.

I really believe this is true, and this is my commitment to YOU.  I say this for my children, for their friends and for all of you who are reading this on my website and blog.

If you are reading this, chances are that you are struggling with some challenge in your life that is really hard for you to overcome by yourself.   And you shouldn’t feel like you have to do this on your own…we adults have responsibility for helping you through these things.

You need people to believe you, believe in your right to be free and healthy, and you need people who will speak up on your behalf.  So here goes:

If someone is getting in the way of your rights, we adults and advocates and especially parents need to know about it.  If someone is hurting you in ANY way, we need you to be strong and tell us.  It’s the only way we can handle the people who are hurting you – and it is the only way we can help you.

You are very brave.  So know that I and our “village” recognize that, and are here to support you.  You are NOT alone.

And even if someone has disappointed you in the past when you’ve asked for help, please know that it is ok to feel disappointed and to even be angry at someone who didn’t follow through and help you.  Even though that felt bad, and you may be worried that someone else will disappoint you, I want you to try this again.

I do know that this is hard, and that when you’ve been hurt it is easier to stay quiet and to give in to shame and fear than it is to speak up and ask for help.  Just know that we can work through that, ok?

It is your right to be supported and helped through this.  So please ask your parent or another adult you trust to let me know how I can help you and them.

Who am I?

I am a Mother – one who has worked hard to help my own children overcome fear, worry and sadness.  There were people who got in my way and caused my children to hurt a lot.  So we know how you feel, and how your parents feel. My children are healthy and happy now, so if I can help them…then I can help YOU.  (No, I don’t do this alone; there are lots of great people here who want to help you!   It’s important to know I do this because I’m a good PARENT.  I work with both mothers and fathers to help kids get what they need.  Sometimes parents need help…so let’s see what we can do for them, too, ok?)

I am an Advocate – this means I work in our community to help others see what they need to do, helping them to do it BETTER, so that you can get what you need.  Does that make sense?

I am a COACH!  This is my JOB.  I lift other people up and make them stronger, so that we can all make things better for you – our kids.   If you have P.E. at school, or know about sports, you know about coaches, right?  I love coaching kids!  It’s my favorite thing to do…so think of me as someone who can help you do better in this challenging “game” that you want to win.

Our Community:

Did you know … there are many people here who want to help you?  Leaders in our business community, in our schools, at our hospitals and in our neighborhoods…all who want to work to see you get what you need!

So if this feels right to you – and you can help me help YOU – ask an adult to help you get in touch with me.

How do we get in touch with each other?  Easy… Use this page – click HERE – to send me your email and/or phone number. 

 ~ Keep being Yourself ~ Believe ~ Play ~ Dream ~ Be a Kid! ~

The Glass Ceiling

Someone came up to me recently and boldly said, “Who are you and where did you come from?”

I took it as a compliment and replied, “I’m an advocate working on improving community, health and performance.”  Where I came from:  Literally, Miami.  Figuratively, from a place where many don’t want to visit.

What you are seeing evolve online is the result of challenging myself to do more with what I have.

This began by watching young children in hospitals dealing with medical challenges – starting when I volunteered in high school and then through college, and as a parent of a Failure-to-Thrive child.

Then, as I watched disabled and in-pain wheelchair athletes compete and inspire a crowd, it dawned on me that I should be doing more with what I have.  So there you have it.

What are you doing to break through the Glass Ceiling that we place over and around ourselves?

What is Your Plan?

Kids and Improving Health

Why do I do much of what I do as an advocate and mother?

Because decisions and actions in our community are having a negative impact on the health of children.

How do I know?  Because I lived through watching my own children suffer unnecessarily while having the right help withheld from them – intentionally and with dishonesty – by certain members of our family court system.

The best gift we can give children this holiday season would be to step up and help resolve the confusion and uncertainty for them as their parents transition through conflict. There are several reasonable ways to do this, which we’ll be addressing in the coming months on our radio show.

As a parent can you imagine much worse than seeing that your children need help, and not being able to give it to them?  

Having your hands tied…while being lied to and made to believe that you have no choice but to let your own child suffer…when you could be providing needed care, nurturing, and psychological or medical treatment — things are ARE within your reach.  You don’t have to be a parent to imagine how terrifying or traumatic this might be… You just have to be human and breathing… And, YES, this is happening a lot, right in your own backyard.

Please ask WHY anyone would intentionally prevent a loving parent from protecting or providing treatment for their child.  Does this make any sense?

Since resolving my own conflict and gaining perspective on the family court arena, I’ve seen countless numbers of children having their health needs – including physical and emotional health – ignored and have even seen treatment withheld and denied when the diagnosis and financial resources were available.

This is child abuse and neglect, goes against the law, and in too many cases it is happening simply because of greed… and to reward foul play in a legal setting.   I’m asking you to look at this and decide where and when you can help.  It’s time.

This issue is like a cancer in our society, only we don’t know until it happens to us, and usually by the time we realize what has happened and what or why it is being done, it is too late to stop it from happening.

If you are offended by this notion, that this is going on, then I’ve done my job with this post.  But the bigger need is for you not to turn away from it but rather decide where you can lend your voice or resources or connections to help #MakeaDifference.

I’d appreciate your support – and these kids really need you.  Let’s see what we can do to ensure that your kids, your grandchildren, or your friends’ and neighbors’ kids don’t feel the impact of this problem. It “takes a village,” remember?  

There is more to what I do than challenging certain professionals around their poor judgment and lack of loyalty and honesty; this is about challenging more parents to recover faster from conflict, to take a look around and to really see how you can use what you’ve learned – and what you’ve earned.  Get out of your own situation, and find someone else to help.

If you’ve followed me in social media you know that I sometimes serve as a voice for families dealing with pediatric cancer.  My own children are involved because we are all so thankful that we are healthy and have the lives and privileges that we do, so we give back by uplifting other families and raising awareness for this issue.  We need greater funding for #PediatricCancer.  We need more heroes!  #YoungHeroes4KidsCancer (Stay tuned as we head toward March 2015 and the next St. Baldrick’s event in Atlanta/SandySprings.)

More success stories are needed to show what happens when we rally behind kids and give them what they need to overcome challenges. Check out Briana Hudson on Facebook to see what I mean!  #YoungHeroesLeague This girl and her family are making big things happen. She is one of my heroes!

Follow My Advocate Center to support us as we work to help families transition through and out of conflict, and as we advocate for policy changes that will make the legal process safer for families.  If we can #ImproveFamilyLaw then we have a better chance of letting kids receive the best that BOTH parents have to offer.  There is just no valid reason to do anything different and our laws support this mission.

Follow People Against Childhood Cancer if you want to learn more about how to help children that way.  Cancer in every form is AWFUL and deserves your attention, commitment, resources and your voice.  Please do what you can while praying this doesn’t touch your own family, neighborhood, church, business or school.

Above all, be grateful and be inspired to do more with what you have.

 

Are All Judges, or Relationships with Judges created Equal?

Let’s put all our cards on the table:

Have you seen or experienced something “off” in a court room?  Or heard a story of someone getting a “raw deal” that just didn’t make any sense?

Well, here is just a part of the explanation, but be forewarned, that this is just one sliver of the answer…or the tip of that mysterious iceberg.

The result of some intelligent persistence by a reporter and parents and some others who believe that we, as citizens of the United States which provides for Equal Access and Due Process, deserve something better:

CBS Atlanta and Jeff Chirico follow parents through stories revealing that Court outcomes sometimes have more behind the curtain than you think.

Just imagine if you had no way of learning that something like this was influencing the outcome of a case where your life and your children depended on the truth counting?

Simple question:  should you be in the know about things like this that are in play in your case before the Court?

Email answers, more questions or news about your case to My Advocate Center, or just follow @MyAdvocateCentr on Twitter to learn more as we peel back the layers hiding the facts and figures driving these stories.

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