Posts in "Standing in the Gap" tag

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.

 

 

 

 

 

Opposing Party

This really bothers me, this obsession we have with opposition.

Opposition that hinders clear thinking and positive results is what I’m referring to.  In politics and religion…gender equality issues…divorce…race.  I chose to wait until I could write calmly.  Not easy when I hear the tone & observe foul play tactics being used by both sides of every debate, and not just the political ones.

If you relish opposing just for its sake & enjoy celebrating over someone’s demise then my blog isn’t for you.  I’m a problem-solver and peacekeeper – because that is what leads to positive outcomes for children and families. It’s what our communities and states need as well.

If you stay, then I ask you to stand with me rather than oppose or argue just to be difficult.  If you want to help make this mission better, and can be constructive then please speak up!

Something important is going on around us that demands we set aside the Seek & Destroy mentality being fueled by every form of media we have access to.

We are missing something big and useful because we’re too caught up in the fight, and in which party is winning.  Time to get rid of the Win/Lose mentality and focus on the best outcome for all involved.

This is so well said at Good Men Project that it bears repeating:  “People are more active and reactive, more jumpy & fearful of who gets elected or that bill getting passed or the Supreme Court deciding one way or another.  In the realm of emotion, it’s revealed that ideology creates enemies of science from all sides.”

The GMP post is entitled “What you believe should be true limits what you are willing to believe is true.”  And the author does a great job of giving examples in how the opposing sides of political or religious debate get in the way of letting science benefit us as much as we’d like.  Emotion gets in the way.  Screw progress or logic…or compromise.   But what if it isn’t just a debate, or just political advantage – or the benefits of science – at stake?   What might be more important than that?  Maybe our children?

Too many of us are closed-minded, willing only to see how things affect us and to read situations in a way that satisfies our own emotions – and that becomes our agenda.   So I ask, is it more important to have an enemy & to defeat them than it is to solve problems that both divide us and hurt our children?

Leaving politics aside I’d like to highlight how this encouragement to oppose and attack – to lie and call others liars – plays out with parents whose relationships or marriages dissolve amid conflict.

It has become normal & acceptable, or so it appears, to do whatever it takes to the opposing party.   Does this REALLY need to be the case?   Why has this become our standard?  Who “approved this message”?

The reason for this post is not just to say “fight fair if you’ve gotta fight” but to reveal during Domestic Violence Awareness month how much worse things are getting because of  this policy of attack instead of debate or compromise.  We seem to enjoy accusing more than solving problems…is that what we want children to do?

~ I believe there is a way to turn this around, but only if opposing sides will turn toward each other, rather than away in resentment and distrust, to listen and to debate.  Openly.  Calm your fear for a minute and give the other side a chance to speak their truth. ~

Speaking now to anyone who has been on either side of the sensitive & inflamed situation involving any form of abuse or allegations of abuse or violence:

Men – including men who have been falsely accused of abuse of any kind – you might read a book written by a true victim of violence and abusive control.   It might be challenging to be allowed to visit a shelter, but it would help if you could.  Put yourself in the shoes of someone real who does not believe they have the right or the ability to protect themselves.

Women – or anyone making false allegations or using children to punish another parent – please spend time listening to good fathers who do not know their children because they were the vulnerable party to their divorce, the one who was under attack & afraid to fight back.   You don’t hear about them as much because it is not Okay for a man to say he was abused or even arrested, possibly losing his job on top of his parenting rights, due to not being allowed to defend himself.

Anyone making false allegations needs to also visit and volunteer in helping real victims, and let it sink in that you are harming these victims and causing the legal system to not pay attention to those who actually DO need protection and support.  Imagine that if you cry wolf, you are leaving someone who needs real help in the hands of their abuser.

Anyone dealing with mistreatment by another, regardless of your gender or status, if you are under attack & need help, ask for it.  If you aren’t sure what you’re dealing with or don’t know how to ask for help, there’s only one way to find out.  ASK.

We each need to hear and understand both sides of this issue.  If we do, then more of us, both women and men, can get what we need.   We can’t afford not to, and we’re paying a price for lack of understanding and for being closed off to the opposing party if we don’t.

Consider this:  if both opposing parties turn their backs to the other, what might happen when no one is looking?   What happens in that gap?