Archive for the ‘women’s rights’ Category
Common Responses After Losing a Child (for Protective Moms)/ E. J Perth PMA INTL. USA Regional Director, Healing & Prayer Network Administrator
I feel it is important to distinguish the loss and being related to family court proceedings because often times the process involves factors that re-traumatize the family and prolong any possibility of stabilizing the family. In essence, there is a distinct type of grief that follows losing a child due to unjust proceedings that villify a parent trying to protect their children.
Mothers who loose their children in family court proceedings often experience (and report):
* Character assassination and/or emotional abuse of the mother (who may be labelled as having “Parental Alienation Syndrome” or “Malicious Mom Syndrome”)
* Minimizing past abuse and its affects/Minimizing the current danger
* Legal proceedings that deny a mother of her legal rights
* Feeling threatened or coerced by court personnel
*Expensive legal or court costs, often resulting in severe financial hardship (I have heard of mothers losing their home and being forced to work several jobs, in which their contact with their children becomes even more limited)
* Inability to protect children combined with valid concerns the children may still be in danger
* Children forcibly removed from the home (a majority of these mothers were primary caregivers)
* Mothers denied contact with children–these children are oftn abruptly, and without warning removed from their homes, their community, their friends and any connection to the mother
* Mothers being compelled into supervised visitation to see children, and may be exposed to other abusers (I have actually heard of a woman who took the bus to supervised visitation, and was stalked by an alleged abuser when leaving the premisis)
* Inability to get help or support for herself. Mothers may have their medical and psychological records subpoened by the court and/or their abuser, in which she degraded or labelled based on the findings and then forced to “prove” she is a fit mother. Mothers may also become isolated because they feel others do not understand their situation. It is common for people to feel overwhelmed hearing these stories and then to be unable to provide support. The financial depletion caused by family court may also limit a woman’s ability to seek help. Not to mention the woman may be so overwhelmed that she does not have the energy to get the help she may need.
* DV by Proxy ; the abuser manipulating the children, or using them in ways to hurt, intimidate or harass the mother (Ie using children to send messages to the mother, telling the children false information about the mother, threatening to harm the children, threatening to take the children, etc..)
Mothers who loose their children in this way often experience:
* Physical Illness (including but not limited to headaches, ulcers, vomiting, fatigue and exhaustion)
* Anxiety/Panic Attacks
* Guilt/Shame/ Self-Blame, particularly around issues that they failed or could not protect their children
* Flashbacks (The court proceedings may trigger memories of abuse, or legitimate fears)
* Binge Eating and/or Lack of Appetite, Nausea
* Shock (A combination of all these factors, feeling numb, unable to perform daily tasks, feeling as if she is living in a fog, lack of memory/concentration, tremors/trembling, hot flashes etc)
* A surge of emotion/adrenaline
* Post Traumatic Stress
* Avoidance (Especially around areas that remind them of their children. It would be common to even avoid social places and friends)
* Fits of Crying — There are often triggers. (When I lost my child, I remember avoiding the grocery store because I would pass my child’s favorite treats, think of my child, and start to cry. It got to the point where I could not even remember what I wanted in the grocery store because I was so upset.)
* Memory Loss/Concentration Difficulties
THIS DOES NOT MEAN THE MOTHER IS MENTALLY ILL OR UNSTABLE, these are typical responses to the loss of a child in combination with the extreme stress of being involved in family court proceedings that are perceived as unjust, and which a mother has no control over. It takes time to work through the grief and emotions of losing your child, and being involved in family court proceedings–these response may emerge and change as the mother processes what has happened.
I found it helpful to be part of a domestic violence group, hosted by a battered women’s shelter. The group is confidential and does not keep records. I was able to talk with other women and learn tools on how to cope, and rebuild my life. There is hope–Stay strong.
Blessings ~ EJ Perth, PMA Intl.USA Regional Director, Healing & Prayer Network Administrator
If you have anything to add to this list, please add a comment. Please keep remain respectful. Any derogatory language will be deleted. Remember PMA is a NO ABUSE ZONE! Thank you for keep it friendly 🙂
There are those who say that this is ordinary. But don’t let that fool you. “Mother” will always be the bravest, least ordinary, most difficult and utterly challenging career that anyone ever hopes to lay claim to.
While others might hear, “diaper-changer, food-maker, car-pooler, bottle-washer, laundry-doer, sweat pants-wearer, life-on-hold” wanna be doing anything else woman, the Truth, whether it feels like it some days or not, is that you are in fact a shelter from the storm.
You are a Cape of Good Hope.
You are a warrior who will battle for your children’s hearts, souls, attention, innocence, education and memories.
Go to battle my friends. This is your time.
We will hold strong on either side of you. We will pray over those bottles, through the dark watches of the night, when doubt comes and children break, when adults fail them, when they push and push as hard against us as that day we delivered them into the world we. will. not. be broken.
We may ache and see cracks tear through our hearts, but we will get up again tomorrow and load the clothes and the words that need to be said. Again and again and again.
And when the world tries to claw at them, to break them, to smash the beauty in them, may our walls hold true. May the lessons we’ve told, the truths we’ve lived, the life we’ve spoken into them come back easily, predictably, with wash and repeat ease.
Kingdom business. Jesus work. This shaping of souls. This raising tiny humans.
There are those that say that this is ordinary. Don’t buy that for a second.
Mighty. You are mighty, because you mother.
This is for all the Protective Mothers with empty arms and hurting hearts who are missing their children every second of every day, but who are deeply hurting this weekend- Mothers Day weekend. Know that no matter what, you ARE your children’s mother. No one -and certainly no court- can take away this God-given role in your children’s lives. Please know this in your heart. PMA INTL. celebrates you, Protective Mom, and deeply understands the unconditional love and heroic sacrifices you have made to protect your children from abuse and harm. You are modern day heroes, and PMA INTL strongly believes that you will go down in history as such. PMA INTL loves and supports you and your precious children now and forever. You are always in are hearts. Happy Mothers Day!
Enjoy PMA International’s timeless re runs. This show features Lundy Bancroft and Karin Huffer.