Thursday, March 27, 2014

A Love Story: Our Wedding

Jason and I eloped June 21, 2013 in order to avoid any problems with moving Warren with us and to live married and not in co-habitation.  I had rented my house and Warren and I were staying with Jason, and his two sons, for the beginning of summer break, where Jason was transferred. I went back after we were married, with Warren, to be heard before our family court Judge about moving for the next year, until Jason could retire at 20 years as a Navy SEAL. Summer break visitation had yet to be determined; it seemed to be an after thought for Peter and something the Judge mentioned as well. The Judge, as always, asked if I had heard from my daughters. I had the opportunity to relay the tragic Christmas story of John and Peter Walton and the damage done to Warren. 

Over Easter weekend Peter had sent threatening emails to me about Warren, and with him owing thousands of dollars in child support, I feared Peter kidnapping Warren and Peter pontificating as an explanation and as a dictator, as he did so often, "what was in Warren's best interest." What was different than any time before was the thought that I didn't have to just accept fear so I filed an emergency protective order and it was granted. Of course the Walton's eluded the serving (some Walton's live in the same town and attempts were made to locate Peter there) of the EPO as they are above all rules and laws; you see "they know best." The problem was that Peter could not take Warren out of the US until the EPO was served and he appeared in court. Peter ended up with about 3 weeks of Warren's summer break. By the time Peter appeared in court and cleared things up, he had only a little over 2 weeks with Warren. The Judge issued orders that Peter communicate strictly about current logistics regarding Warren and not engage in talk about the past. As you well know if you've read other blogs, Peter cannot control himself and has continued to engage in controlling, shaming communication with me. If Peter were concerned about the amount of time he spends with Warren he wouldn't have abandoned his weekly timeshare. If I were as abusive as he accused there is no way he would give me one more minute than was ordered. The Waltons had just enough time, without assuming too much responsibility for the care of a 9 year old, to parade Warren around and show that Peter, maintained control, had all of the children and would someday soon have Warren full time as well. Peter has communicated this to Jo, and in an attempt to diminish Jason's and my custodial role with Warren, she shared Peter's plans, as fact, at the court hearing regarding the New Year's Even event. She also shared that I had a restraining order out against me and am an abusive person. Her attacks have turned toward Warren and me. I know this gets so confusing and let me get to my point. 

This picture is me and my love at our beautiful December 22, 2013 wedding. We were married before God, our friends and family in a religious ceremony. It was important to both of us. It was like the heavens opened up for two perfect days and then the weather returned to a more natural state. I will think fondly on this day for the rest of my life; it was truly a fairy tale.

Following the events of New Years' Eve, Jo had her mother and step father call family members to tell them our December, beautiful, wedding was a sham and we had been hitched for months. She has been court ordered, as Peter has, to stop verbally abusive communication to Jason, but her orders extend to Jason's family as she has been shameless in her communications with a handful of Jason's family and friends. So she has her parents continue with her abusive attacks. They even called Jason's 93 year old grandfather and 89 year old grandmother, who had attended the wedding and thoroughly enjoyed themselves. They lied and said Jason was being forced out of the military and has to be escorted on to base daily....93 and 89....These are adults saying these things to the elderly. And they asked them for money because of what Jason and I had done, saying they needed to protect their great-grandson from us.

Amidst all of this, Jason and I hold on tighter. Neither of us wanted these horror stories. We thank God every day for our family of three, but always keep space in our hearts and home for seven. Jason, Warren and I pray for two brothers and two sisters every night.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014 is the real thing....

What is PAS?
Gardner's definition of PAS is:

1. The Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) is a disorder that arises primarily in the context of child-custody disputes.

2. Its primary manifestation is the child's campaign of denigration against a parent, a campaign that has no justification.

3. It results from the combination of a programming (brainwashing) of a parent's indoctrinations and the child's own contributions to the vilification of the targeted parent.

Excerpted from: Gardner, R.A. (1998). The Parental Alienation Syndrome, Second Edition, Cresskill, NJ: Creative Therapeutics, Inc.

What is the child's part in PAS?
Gardner notes that the PAS is more than brainwashing or programming, because the child has to actually participate in the denigrating of the alienated parent. This is done in primarily the following eight ways:
  1. The child denigrates the alienated parent with foul language and severe oppositional behavior.
  2. The child offers weak, absurd, or frivolous reasons for his or her anger.
  3. The child is sure of himself or herself and doesn't demonstrate ambivalence, i.e. love and hate for the alienated parent, only hate.
  4. The child exhorts that he or she alone came up with ideas of denigration. The "independent-thinker" phenomenon is where the child asserts that no one told him to do this.
  5. The child supports and feels a need to protect the alienating parent.
  6. The child does not demonstrate guilt over cruelty towards the alienated parent.
  7. The child uses borrowed scenarios, or vividly describes situations that he or she could not have experienced.
  8. Animosity is spread to the friends and/or extended family of the alienated parent.

In severe cases of parent alienation, the child is utterly brain- washed against the alienated parent. The alienator can truthfully say that the child doesn't want to spend any time with this parent, even though he or she has told him that he has to, it is a court order, etc. The alienator typically responds, "There isn't anything that I can do about it. I'm not telling him that he can't see you."

I took the video down because of Jason's attorney at the time (Jo put up quite a fit being shown so blatantly to be a horribly abusive mother. The boy's come onto the screen one by one talking over Jason and saying in monotone, "I have nothing to say to you." And leaving the screen.

This is a video of Jason and his sons. As you can see Jo has PAS and is doing everything she can to raise fatherless sons despite what it will do to them ultimately. Peter reads from the same play book and does the same with my daughters. Do you see first hand how it hurts the children (young adults)? To be forced to hate half of themselves..

Friday, March 21, 2014

A Response from a Dear Friend about My Awakening

This is from a friend that walked with me through my chapter of "My Worst Fears." 

Your naïveté existed before as a coping mechanism. It is cracking. You are beginning to see, you don't need it anymore. Because you have survived your own horrors, you know deep down, you will survive this. Because you have survived, you will understand. Because you have sought justice in your own life, you will help others find the justice they need. Because you have sought justice, you can take off those rose colored glasses. See through your former naïveté. Rest gentle, find shelter and joy in the love you have found in your life. You have worked so hard. You have come so far. I have watched some of this transformation. You have tools to help you survive this harsh reality now. So come out and see this world you've worked so hard to make for yourself. All my love. I'll be thinking of you. 

It's a self-preservation mechanism. It's easy to get triggered when you see things like what you see involving domestic violence. But you have done so much wonderful work to make your life a safe place to live, both for you and your family. You don't need to hide. You can come out now. Share with the ones you've learned are safe to let in. Lean on them. Let in their light. I love you more than I can show, as far away as I am living. If I could, I would love to take you to coffee. I would love to give you a big, reassuring hug. This is all I can do. I'm holding you up to the Light of the Universe right now. Love you today and always..

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Living with PTSD

I have several blogs about ready to post, but I am compelled to write spontaneously. I research violent deaths. I have done this for over 13 years now and a reason my daughters find "my abuse" hard to believe. You see they think if I was exposed to the scientific side of this issue for so long then I would've seen what was happening and ended things long before I did. Unfortunately, though I excelled in my career, I maintained a naiveté in my personal life I am embarrassed to articulate. Really up to my current age, I have been down right unenlightened, even betraying myself for the sake of Pollyanna.

I live with the after affects of being abused by isolation. Like a victim being thrown back into a "normal" existence while feeling like an alien, I too, can revert back to my abusive state and, nearly in a literal fetal position, go into my own mind and live there. It's not depression, it's close to catatonic (which interestingly falls under PTSD in the DSM), but a slightly different consequential psychological affect and nothing I've read about. I learned to live for over two decades in my own mind. I had no way of genuine exposure while with Peter. I learned to go inside and be comfortable only there. While in this warped state of mind I can only be engaged for a few hours a day. I have been here for over a week now.

On the flip side, I am healing from PTSD from my 24 year relationship with a sociopath. So what triggered me? some of it hurts...a lot....I'm not feeling with anger, I am feeling with sadness.

I have read narratives of violence for my whole career and it has been a distant story, like a TV show or movie, just numbers, and I've been criticized for this, for being callous in presentations. I am working on a three part series with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on child homicide deaths in our nation. Today, I cried. Tears ran down my face.... for mostly the 2nd and 3rd and 4th children that were killed, generally by their parents. What horror to watch and wait without the adult knowledge to act. The setting them on fire and the sexual assaults...real stories. Story after story. I don't feel good, I feel unsettled, I feel lonely, I have isolated myself, but what did they feel? Maybe by allowing myself to be in this state, I can tell their stories in a way that will be an honor to their short lives. Those dear little people, who died because their parents became consumed with emotion beyond their capabilities. I believe they each had a guardian angel that covered them with their wings as they passed out of this world. This world that can be so terrible.

I have learned something. I am dealing with these triggers as I once was conditioned, but tomorrow I will spend more time engaged and the next day a little more. I can re-train my mind. I will learn to see and process pain without reverting back to the safe inward world I have created. God bless me as I step out from under rose colored glasses and see the world as it is...even when it hurts so much my body trembles.