Posts in "Legal Advocacy" tag

Consequences of Standing Your Ground

My title here should be, The Rewards of Standing Your Ground, but I’ll save that for my next post.

When least expected you may face an attack on your character, on your business and reputation; or the attack may come at you as a parent, or even on all of the above.  Yes, unfortunately I know this personally and can attest to the uncomfortable consequences, but I also expect to demonstrate the rewards of learning and growing from the experience.

It’s a choice to stay in the experience rather than running from it, and it’s a choice – sometimes an hourly one – to grow from it and seek the purpose in the lesson. Some people wonder why I don’t take their advice and just let it go and move on to something else, but more of those who know me or those who can see why I stand my ground so often (which means more litigation than I care to discuss here), express admiration and encouragement for staying the course. I’m grateful and very blessed to have more new friends and signs of support than I can count. Fortunately I’m also not alone in being bull-headed about righting wrongs and addressing foul play.

I draw strength from seeing how others handle these attacks, especially when someone stands their ground  when the cost is very high. Even better is when others join forces because they know the person’s work and character are compelling, meaningful to society and worth fighting for. If you see some of my posts on LinkedIn, Twitter and occasionally on Facebook about a fight going on, about creating transparency over professional misconduct or about child abuse, I hope you’ll remember this explanation here on my personal blog.

I want more people to realize they can overcome retaliation and improve personally and at work from dealing with the consequences of standing up to those who willfully steal, lie and litigate to cause harm. And as I’m frequently told, if someone is retaliating against you and trying to bring you down, it’s likely because you’re doing something right, something of value for society.

Two people I am proud to know and cheer for in their ongoing battles against wrongdoing and false allegations are Michael J. Daugherty and Mark Thomason, both from Georgia. Both were just doing their jobs, diligently and with integrity, contributing to society by building their own businesses and giving back when they were ambushed.

One owns a medical testing lab and the other is a publisher of a small, rural newspaper.  Not much in common and they would probably never cross paths except they are both now in the news – in the spotlight because they are standing up to corrupted behavior and attempted cover-ups by government officials and/or agencies.

Both are duking it out with the bad actors in litigation and in social media, and both on principle…because someone has to so that more innocent people and upstanding businesses are not harmed. Daugherty, now an author and spokesman on cybersecurity and government overreach, has been calling out the witch hunt on the federal agency level, while Thomason’s open records requests were made on a hyper-local level (Blue Ridge, Georgia, in the Appalachian Judicial Circuit) but leading to national recognition and support from news media.

Fact Check Time with Mike Daugherty

Watching the events unfold in their respective fights is somewhat like looking in a mirror, and when you learn more about what sparked their fights, you may be able to relate on some level. If that’s the case, I hope that you are inspired and find something to draw strength from as I have. When someone does harm to you or to a person or place you care about, and you feel called to do something about it, prepare for and expect the blowback!

I believe both Michael and Mark will affirm that it will worsen before it gets better and relief arrives, but there is no greater satisfaction (outside of parenting, personally) than showing you have what it takes, including a network of support, to prevail in the end.

Please check out their stories – Mike Daugherty and Mark Thomason – and follow the updates on these cases. The retaliation against these good men is alarming, blatant and clearly meant to destroy, but I expect both will prevail and that our society will be better off for the stands they are taking.

Mark’s updates can be seen on the Fannin Focus Facebook page when other news media report on the situation, so this is the easiest way to keep up with Mark.

Twitter is my favorite way to keep up with Mike and the banter about data security, privacy, and the hacking done by Tiversa to create profits from false allegations against his business. Unreal! [This reminds of a couple other Georgia cases involving computer security experts being used to create false criminal claims, which were turned into profits for a few attorneys and their experts; one of these cases involves a story of national interest, so you’ll see more coming out on this one].

Your story, I am guessing, is also worth telling and I’m glad to read or listen, and to invite you to talk about it when Pro Advocate Radio returns for its next season!

Watch this WSB-TV report to go deeper into the saga exposing judicial impropriety, retaliation against reporters who ask too many questions and to see how our news media are responding.

Worthy of What You Need

Considering messages given to us as parents, and to our kids:

Aren’t you thankful that you don’t have to be perfect?

child learning how to make a pot on a pottery wheel, old potter

Has anyone told you that you DO have to be perfect in order to be worthy of their support, or of being believed?

Many of us grew up understanding that if we were “worthy” or “good enough” we would get the validation, time or support that we craved.  We missed out on something and became vulnerable as we went out into the world searching for what we felt we needed that was not given to us as children.

As adults many of us struggle with having love withheld – unconditional love – in marriages and relationships.   We might also struggle with an employer who withholds positive feedback or makes us feel like we somehow don’t measure up.  We feel the sting of missed opportunities or of a betrayal.

Being told that you don’t measure up, and therefore are not entitled to support – or that you are not worthy of being believed or even protected – is a tactic that we hopefully learn to recognize as we get older.

But this tactic only works for as long as we allow it to work.

Once we get it that we really do NOT need to be perfect, or to be exactly as someone else dictates to us, we can claim our worth.  We can expect to be treated better by those around us.

This is the phase I’m in with my children; helping them see that their value is not attached to their grades or to their level of sports competition, or to which friends they have or don’t have.

This is also a common theme with so many parents who talk to me about what they are facing as they work through conflict with each other and with family court professionals.

The rest of this note is for the many parents who are expressing to me or to My Advocate Center’s team that they are being told, You are so flawed that you can’t expect any better in this situation.”  They are hearing these comments directed at them as decisions are being made about parenting time and parenting rights.

Apparently you must be “perfect” to be allowed to make decisions about the care of your child, or to be allowed to freely nurture and give to your child.  Certain professionals claim authority and claim that in their perfect wisdom that they can tell you – the parent – that you do not measure up somehow, and that you must be fearful and in some cases be prepared to BUY time with your children.

Of course, no one is showing these parents what “perfect” looks like.  And parents in most cases are not given the chance improve upon their alleged shortcomings before finding out they’ve lost everything.  Many are not even allowed to see the results of their evaluations and tests to learn what their actual flaws and faults are…when those things are being used to take away CHILDREN.

No, it’s not right how these parents are being treated – and it’s not right what is being done to their children in the process.   

There is no “win” in this for the children, only for the professionals holding these families captive and able to control time, decision-making and all of the family’s financial resources.

And just imagine how the kids feel seeing their parents under this much stress?   If a parent is beaten down and made to believe they are not worthy, and have no rights and no chance, what do you think this does to a child’s peace of mind, sense of self-worth and stability?

I can confirm for you that it is just BAD all around.   And completely unnecessary – – and preventable.

So let’s go back to the initial concept here:  if you are worthy enough to be allowed to parent your child, then say so.  Act like it.  If your child is worthy of having your love, time, nurturing and financial support, then say so.  Act like it.

If you are worthy of being believed and supported, say so.  Then act like it.  Send the right message to your kids by saying, “I am worthy of the best treatment, and therefore so are YOU.”

If the people around you – especially those who are working for YOU and who are hired to help protect your children and your rights – do not say so or if they do not act like they believe this, then why would you keep them around?

Aren’t you and your children worthy of getting what you need?   Please let me know if you still need help getting to that answer by emailing me through MyAdvocateCenter.com.

 

 

 

 

 

Slaughter of Children

Few words are needed.   Dismay, shock, horror…those about cover it.  Unnecessary loss for so many. I wish I didn’t feel the need to write in response to school shootings or to reference other situations in which children are damaging themselves or others.

As a parent and human being your heart and mind reach out to the parents who lost their precious young children, the ones who deserved no harm and who deserved to be able to grow up and live out their lives.

This tragedy appears to be bringing many together, as well as firing up debate over causes and preventions.

It is making me even more determined to help a few understand how their decisions, or a lack of appropriate decision-making around how “high conflict” personalities are managed, are affecting children.

Much of what I write is geared toward a few —  some who want ideas, support, tools & resources with which to help awaken and drive change – and to others who are curious but haven’t yet accepted that they are a part of the problem…and that I am asking of all:  please become a part of the Solution.

The mental state of the shooter of these young children reminds me of another disturbed young adult – really a child in so many ways – and the process during which his mental and emotional state declined to where he is now.   Where he is now is sad.   Angry at the world, lacking in self-worth, and lacking in regard for how his behavior and addictions affect others.   Coping skills learned when support and nurturing and accountability and structure were removed from his life.  (Of course that is the consolidated explanation.)

This young adult who started out as a sweet child caught in a very high-stress conflict, is now a raging addict with an arrest record that would make you cringe.   There isn’t much hope for him to turn it around, but I hope I’m wrong.  I believe it could have been prevented – if proper legal and psychological counsel had been provided.

Legal counsel is invaluable where it recognizes the Needs of Children and works accordingly, upholding laws, rules as well as Fiduciary Duty.   When those things are lacking, more children are left unsupported and exposed – left to their own devices in the wake of a crisis, and that doesn’t always work out so well.

If you are uncertain and want to know more about a real life example of how poor case management, and withholding proper counseling and support can all play out for a child caught between dysfunctional parents, please email via My Advocate Center.   Connecting the dots for you is simple.

My point in expressing grief and anger is to explain what I know, and that is that certain professionals are aware that how they are treating families is leading to more dysfunction, addiction and abuse in teens and young adults.  We just have to decide that it’s not “fine” and to face the issues like we would face faulty wiring or plumbing that could lead to worse trouble and expense.

Since I wrote this post originally more lives have been lost, including that of the boy described above. Other teens have gone missing, and some are being held in lockdown facilities – not because they need to be there for treatment, but because that is how they can be silenced, and because it is profitable for certain court professionals to send them there.

This is real, it IS close to Home; and there IS something YOU can do about it.   Just ask.

 

So you want to be a lawyer?

I hear the term good lawyering occasionally, but it isn’t usually explained. It’s assumed that good means ethical, effective, and that value is added for the client.

My first real encounter taught me to look into the meaning of words used when people make referrals to lawyers, because I experienced none of the above unfortunately. But I set out to find proof that good lawyers do exist and to show that the less-than-good are the exception, rather than the rule.

Create the description you believe is true of your talent and professional conduct, what you want projected when your name is shared…but first, be that good lawyer.

Stand up and explain the difference, in detail.

Better yet, demonstrate it by your actions and in the outcomes you achieve for your clients. When you advocate the way you would want someone to do for your own son or daughter, you send a message that becoming a lawyer is actually a noble endeavor.

Lead by example_My Advocate Center

 

Not Just Another Squeaky Wheel

Why just make noise when you can take action, fix a problem, give back, set an example?  Start out by making noise & asking others to help you find answers.  But don’t forget to get your own wheel fixed first!  It’s often much easier to point out issues or solutions to others while ignoring our own…so take care of yourself, and then look around to see who needs the oil can next. But by all means don’t just keep rollin’ along!

Imagine being a pioneer in the early years of taming the West: broken wheels didn’t get you very far, did they? It’s amazing what can happen when you can admit you’re broken and connect with those who have solutions, good resources, and peace of mind you can draw from.

What about faith? Mine is in God and for sure not in myself. A wise man recently shared that I was trying too hard, and said, “We are supposed to be living FROM God, and not just FOR God.” Hmm, you mean draw our strength & confidence from that source as we forge ahead? Well, I’ll try it. No guarantees that is how it will look to you, my observers, critics, supporters, or my children. Let’s see how this goes. Join me?