Protective Mothers' Alliance International

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Beyond Bias; Tips For Protective Mothers

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PMA has previously posted links and articles about developing critical thinking skills. Critical thinking is especially helpful in healing from the damaging effects of abuse, as it can help you to identify the controlling and deceitful tactics of the abuser so you can begin to heal, and re-establish your identity free of violence. Taught to children, critical thinking contributes to healthy self-esteem and the ability to think independently Critical thinking skills may also be a buffer against DV By Proxy. PMA INTL will go further down this path by discussing BIAS.

Identifying and dealing with bias involves the use of critical thinking skills; this article will reveal the different types of bias and discuss how bias affects a person’s ability to see the world as it really is. Some bias is a normal part of life, to some degree everyone has bias; but left unchecked bias can damage the ability to think rationally, and damage the ability to develop healthy relationships with others. For traumatized protective mothers recognizing personal bias and using critical thinking skills, may help protect against re- victimization and manipulations from any source. This article will offer tips on how to prevent bias from becoming an unhealthy influence, again using critical thinking as a powerful tool for self empowerment.

http://www.criticalthinking.org/

Bias is defined as prejudice in favor of or against one thing, person, or group compared with another, usually in a way considered to be unfair.

Nowhere is it more crucial for information to be precise than in the intelligence community. In this arena it is a matter of life , death and global peace to be certain that information received is exact and not viewed from the lens of biased eyes. Yet, there have always been problems associated with the accurate analysis of information within the intelligence community. These problems always occur because the human mind is easily influenced by many factors in the environment. In the case of the Cold War, these factors contributed to problems and failures in intelligence. Biases and perceptions can lead to a misconstrued view of reality and the way we process information. http://smallwarsjournal.com/jrnl/art/bias-and-perception-how-it-affects-our-judgment-in-decision-making-and-analysis

What is Psychological Bias?

Psychologists Daniel Kahneman, Paul Slovic, and Amos Tversky introduced the concept of psychological bias in the early 1970s. They published their findings in their 1982 book, “Judgment Under Uncertainty.”

They discovered that psychological bias – also known as cognitive bias – is the inclination to make decisions or take action in a less than logical way.

Common Psychological Biases

Below, are five psychological biases that are common in decision making. Along with suggestions on how to overcome them

1. Confirmation Bias

Confirmation bias is looking for information that supports your existing beliefs, and rejecting information that go against your beliefs. A 2013 study found that confirmation bias can affect the way that people view statistics. This can lead you to make biased decisions, since all relevant information is not factored in to your decision.

How to Avoid Confirmation Bias

1. Seek out information from a range of sources, to challenge what you think and learn more about a subject.

2. Use an approach such as the ‘Six Thinking Hats” technique to consider situations from various perspectives. http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTED_07.htm

3. Discuss your thoughts with others. You may consider joining a club, attending community ed or attending an open mic or jam session as way to participate in or hear lively discussions.

4. Surround yourself with a diverse group of people. You may consider going to community or religious celebrations different than your own, visiting museums/historical sites or volunteering in your community to be exposed to new experiences.

5.Listen to opposing views. This could be as simple as listening to a radio station you have never heard before, or taking the time to talk with a rebellious teenager (kidding).

6.Seek out people and information that challenge your opinions, please use boundaries (especially if you have a history of abuse) to ensure the conversations remain respectful as well as enjoyable.

7.Assign someone you trust to give feedback for major decisions or decisions you struggle with.

2. Anchoring (“ first impression bias”)

This bias is the tendency to jump to conclusions before all the facts are gathered.

How to Avoid Anchoring

Anchoring may happen if you have a tendency to act hastily or are under pressure to make a decision.

NOTE: This is different from the triggers victims of abuse commonly experience; triggers are reactions to past trauma that cause a chemical reaction in the body, causing a person to relive the or experience flashbacks of trauma. A person reacting to a trigger is not biased, though they do experience intense pressure or anxiety it is related to something that has caused them to re-experience or remember a painful event. This is NOT a bias.

1.Reflect on your history, and think about times when you have a past history of rushing to judgment

2.Make decisions slowly, use relaxation or calming techniques if you need (deep breath, music, positive affirmations, etc.)

3. Ask for longer time for decision making. (If someone is pressing aggressively for a decision, this can be a sign that the thing they’re pushing for is against your best interests.)

3. Overconfidence Bias

Placing too much faith in your own knowledge. Believing that your contribution to a decision is more valuable than it actually is.

How to Avoid Overconfidence Bias

Consider the following questions:

1.What sources of information do you tend to rely on when you make decisions?

2 Are these fact-based, or do you rely on hunches?

3. Who else is involved in gathering information?

4.Has information been gathered systematically?

Consider what you can do to gather comprehensive, objective data, if you feel your information has been unreliable.

4. Gambler’s Fallacy

With the gambler’s fallacy, you expect past success to always influence the future

In fact, outcomes are highly uncertain. The number of successes that you’ve had previously has a small impact on the future.

How to Avoid Gambler’s Fallacy

1. Look at trends from a number of angles, especially those that challenge past events.

2. Look deep into data, research, studies.

5. Fundamental Attribution Error

Blaming others when things go wrong, instead of looking objectively at the situation. Blaming or judging someone based on a stereotype or a perceived personality flaw.

How to Avoid Fundamental Attribution Error

1.Look at situations, and the people involved in them, non-judgmentally.

2. Use empathy

3. Look at situations from a cultural perspective, if appropriate..

It’s hard to spot psychological bias in ourselves because it often comes from subconscious thinking.
For this reason, it can often be unwise to make major decisions on your own.
http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/avoiding-psychological-bias.htm

Fighter

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Common Responses After Losing a Child (for Protective Moms)/ E. J Perth PMA INTL. USA Regional Director, Healing & Prayer Network Administrator

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A list of common responses/reactions after losing a child in a family court proceeding

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)

* Re-traumatization

* 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

* Depression

* 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

* Insomnia

* 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

* Hyperventilating

* Post Traumatic Stress

* Avoidance (Especially around areas that remind them of their children. It would be common to even avoid social places and friends)

* Withdrawl

* Anger

* Fear

* 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 🙂

Emotional Abuse

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Caught Between Parents Supporting children through the challenges of divorce by Amy J.L. Baker, Ph.D.

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dvbyproxy

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/caught-between-parents/201105/word-mothers-you-can-lose-your-children-parental-alienation

As mother’s day approaches I want to take a moment to unequivocally state that yes mothers even good mothers can lose their children to parental alienation. One common myth that seems to be “out there” in the world is that parental alienation is something that only happens to fathers and that mothers, because they tend to have residential custody and because (the theory goes) the courts are biased against fathers, rarely lose their kids this way. While no one has data about the exact gender break down, I can say that without a doubt some mothers do and have been victimized in this way. I believe that part of why this is not talked about as much as fathers’ experiences of parental alienation is that mothers who do lose their kids this way are overcome with shame and humiliation and tend to not want to go public with their story. In my conversations with targeted mothers a common theme is that they perceive other people as thinking that they must have done something wrong for their child to reject them. Many stay silent for this reason, to avoid being blamed and shamed. Another complicating factor is that many women’s rights group denounce the existence of parental alienation, claiming that it is a fabricated problem designed to hurt mothers. Thus, women seeking support and guidance from these groups may be given the message that they are mistaken and/or must stay silent. It is time for targeted mothers to go public and be open about their experience, and make it clear that it is possible to be both a feminist and a victim of parental alienation. I strongly believe that the more people talk about this problem, the more likely it is that it can be prevented and treated. Too often custody cases get bogged down in whether the problem is real rather than focusing on how to resolve the alienation and help heal parent child relationships. In my experience an alienating parent needs three things: (1) motive to undermine the child’s relationship with the other parent, (2) access to the child, and (3) skillful use of alienation strategies. These are not the sole purview of either gender.

On father’s day I will certainly acknowledge the risks and concerns that they contend with concerning parental alienation. In the meantime, I encourage all parents (mothers and fathers) to become educated about parental alienation, to help create awareness in their community, and to work towards improving prevention, intervention, and treatment of this terrible form of child abuse.

Minors Counsel; Plunder The Booty / Desperate Exes

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http://desperateexes.com/2009/08/24/argh-minors-counsels-plunder-the-booty/

pirate63

Have you felt the “hum” at the Stanley Mosk Courthouse? Yeah, it is the “hum” of people talking about “MINOR’S COUNSEL,” aka, “I have a fast boat and a flag with a skull and crossbones, lets take a cruise.” Several lawyers who I respect have mentioned this to me and I too have noticed the power these attorneys have in the capacity of being appointed by the courts as “minors counsel.” You would almost expect them to show up looking a little grandmotherly or a little fatherly. I am actually a little taken aback that they don’t come to court wearing a patch over one eye and a parrot on the shoulder. All the more that makes one wonder what is the actual purpose of these lawyers who get these real lucrative gigs working with kids? Kids who, by the way, under any sense of normalcy would never see a psychologist , or a counselor (unless at school) or for that matter their own attorney, to protect their rights to see if Sunday is better than Saturday for an “overnight,” or that mom cannot fry an egg, or dad does not seem to know how to operate the washer or the dryer. But now they have the misfortune to have two parents who are getting divorced and thus they have their very own Minor’s Counsel…or is it “Miner’s Counsel”…LMAO, I just had a vision of a bearded guy with a shovel digging in a mine and bringing gold ore to the surface.

Folks if you happen to be in court one day and the judge mentions “minor’s counsel,” you too may want to hum “IT TAKES A WORRIED MAN TO SING A WORRIED SONG”. Do not get me wrong here folks, I too was a court appointed investigator many years ago and made a fortune, oops I meant to say a comfortable living, being appointed to represent people who had been arrested, and worked on their defense. It was great, the cops arrested them, the D.A. prosecuted them and I got to defend them, all being paid for by the county (not L.A. by the way…I never thought that the tax payer ever really got it)! It was great!

Back to “miners counsel.” It has been reported that one lawyer who represented a celebrity who had to stop constantly to get coffee and smokes got paid in excess of $400,000 dollars to represent two kids that couldn’t say “poop,“ and there is another one that has made in excess of $100,000 — for what exactly no one can figure out for sure. Now, what I just wrote is for those of you with MONEY and what a gift it is to be appointed by a judge to one of these cases, famous rich people!!! Cha Ching. They will show up for every hearing, every interview I am sure they would not miss even your kid’s bris, this for all my goyim readers is a circumcision. Now for all of you who are wondering about the working class and the poor well you could be ordered to pay half or NO PROBLEM, the county will pay “Da Miner” $125 an hour, and no cap! Take the kid to dinner and a movie and “bill baby,bill.” This is great money, as many of these people could not present a case in court if their life depended on it…not all, but many. So this is great, it is a little like a guy who goes to school to fix cars, he can’t fix crap, so he just moves the cars for the mechanics to fix, very similar.

And wait till you see these “protectors of the children” make there orations in the court room….OMG, this is not funny and can kill your chances of making any headway in your divorce. And most judges that I have observed give these “Miners” free rein to run one or the other or both parents right into the ground. For all my cat lovers, ever notice when your cat drops a smelly one in her kitty litter, well the burying action is very similar to what minor’s counsel can do to whatever position you thought you had in your divorce. And I have seen a few instances of that, “look judge what a great job I did,” did very much appear to me to be a bit over the top…way over the top. And quite frankly are all of these appointees thinking clearly? One or two I have seen appear, how do I put this delicately, NUTS!

Moms and Dads, god help you if your kid is smart enough to play a game on their sometimes overzealous lawyer aka “Minor’s Counsel,“ Oh No Mr. Bill! What real expertise do these people have to deal with children and to interpret what they say and do? Let’s see, a JD degree and a class to be qualified to deal with the children of people going through a divorce, and POOF! it is “show me the money!” My opinion, for the most part this is an appointment with too many flaws. That is the truth, they take a class to get appointed to the panel, LMAO for a few this has been the equivalent of winning the lottery! I ran a juvenile division for a couple of years and I know juveniles and this minor’s counsel thing has to be one of the best gravy trains I have seen in years.

“NEVER GIVE UP”/ Yolanda Adams

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“Never Give Up”
Visions that can change the world trapped inside an ordinary girl
She looks just like me too afraid to dream out loud
And though it’s simple your idea, it won’t make sense to everybody
You need courage now If you’re gonna persevere
To fulfill divine purpose, you gotta answer when you’re called
So don’t be afraid to face the world against all odds
[Chorus]
Keep the dream alive don’t let it die
If something deep inside keeps inspiring you to try, don’t stop
And never give up, don’t ever give up on you
Don’t give up
Every victory comes in time, work today to change tomorrow
It gets easier, who’s to say that you can’t fly
Every step you take you get, closer to your destination
You can feel it now, don’t you know you’re almost there?
To fulfill divine purpose, you gotta answer when you’re called
So don’t be afraid to face the world against all odds
[Chorus]
Keep the dream alive don’t let it die
If something deep inside keeps inspiring you to try, don’t stop
And never give up, don’t ever give up on you
[Bridge:]
Who holds the pieces to complete the puzzle?
The answer that can solve a mystery
The key that can unlock your understanding
It’s all inside of you, you have everything you need yeahhhh
Sooooo, keep the dream alive don’t let it die
If something deep inside, keeps inspiring you to try don’t stop
And never give up, don’t ever give up on you
Sometimes life can place a stumbling block in your way
But you’re gotta keep the faith, bring what’s deep inside your heart yeah your
Heart to the light
And never give up Don’t ever give up on you
Nooo don’t give up,
No, no, no, no don’t give up
Oh, no, no, no, no don’t…give…up

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