No one protects like a mother… A new ad campaign by Lysol celebrates the protective strength of mothers, and the incredible lengths they will go to keep their children safe. (For their part, Lysol says that no one protects against germs like their product.)

The ad campaign, named “What it Takes to Protect“, is created by McCann New York and features a video depicting wild animals to symbolize the fierceness, strength and beauty of motherhood. This creative ad campaign features humorous moments and touching images that will resonate with Moms everywhere.

What it Takes to Protect” was especially inspiring to me, as a mother who has been involved in family court proceedings with an abusive ex because what keeps me going day after day, week after week, and weeks turning into years in family court… is that motherly instinct to love and protect my child above all else.

The term “Protective Mother” is actually used to describe women, who are often survivors of domestic violence. who fight for the safety and well-being of their children, and fight to maintain a relationship with their children in family court. Abusers often initiate custody disputes or other legal action against their victims as a way to maintain power and control, and will use children as a pawn to hurt their ex partners. Sadly, the family court too often fails to recognize domestic violence and how it manifests post separation and rulings are issued that endanger both mother and child, and often results in a dangerous abuser gaining unsupervised visitation or, even, sole custody. The efforts these mothers make to escape the abuse, and attempt to keep their children safe and rebuild their lives under such daunting challenges, is truly courageous… and should be celebrated. 

According to McCann New York Co-CCO Thomas Murphy,”There is something deep and universal in the motherly instinct to protect. and it goes beyond human moms… Everyone knows that in nature you don’t mess with the mother! McCann New York, Lysol Show You How to ‘Protect Like A Mother’

What it Takes Protect” offers an interactive website: Protect Like a Mother (Lysol)

The website features fun facts about animal mothers in the wild portrayed with stunning pictures of animal mamas and their babies, allows you to e-mail a Mother’s Day card and showcases the video.

In addition, there will be a free, family friendly event in Brooklyn, New York over Mother’s Day weekend May 13-14, 2017. According to the website,”The free, family-friendly exhibit will pay tribute to the fiercest moms on the planet through larger-than-life interactive animal installations, reaching up to 24 feet in height and including an eagle, an octopus and an orangutan. The installations will chronicle motherly instincts through visual storyboards of the most incredible moms on Earth.

Date: Mother’s Day Weekend – May 13th – May 14th
Time: 9am – 6pm
Location: Brooklyn Bridge Plaza at Brooklyn Bridge Park”


This is a very interesting concept.. I would also add that I believe Domestic Violence and Stalking should be eligible for “repeat offense” penalties under the law. And if a person repeatdely commits domestic violence or stalking acts against another, they should face stiffer penalties earlier on to try to prevent abuse, and keep that person off the streets–and in jail._

Gwenyth makes a good point that with Abusers, “the central focus of the behavioral symptoms are targeted at specifically ones romantic partner and the behavioral patterns are not consistent in other situations..”

What are your thoughts on this article, and including “Abusive Personality Disorder” in the DSM-IV? Plz post your comments below.


Title: “Why not adopt an Abusive Personality Disorder diagnosis?”
Author: Gwenyth, 11/27/2012. She is an “anti-domestic violence activist”.

Like many anti-domestic violence activists I too believe that domestic violence is not an individual problem but a community problem that requires the support of the whole community to bring to an end. What I propose as a new solution to this problem it the adoption for Abusive Personality Disorder to be accepted by the mental health/social work profession, feminist scholars, anti-dating violence activists, and into the public discourse of dating violence. This would help concerned persons identify and make sense of the abuser’s patterns of behavior and help others learn how to hold the abusive person accountable for their actions.

Despite the changes over the years dating violence continues to be a major problem in US. According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, dating violence is not just restricted to physical violence or single incidences of behavior but rather “the pervasive and methodical use of threats, intimidation, manipulation, and physical violence by someone who seeks power and control over their intimate partner.”

Many myths and misconceptions about the nature of domestic violence contribute to the confusion many victims, friends, family, and communities feel about how best react to the situations when they arise. However there is considerable amount of research and information that is known about the common patterns of abusive persons. If this information was more commonly known would help promote safety for victims and potential victims as well as increase accountability for abusers.

Being able to recognize the patterns of abusive persons can help persons not involved, such as police, judges, friends, and family better identify who is the abusive party and who is the victim. This is an important distinction to make as many abusive persons claim to be real victims themselves to avoid negative consequences and discredit and cast doubts on their victim’s accusations.

A personality disorder is not a biological mental illness that can be treated with medication or has on organic basis but rather it is a collection of personality traits that common happen together in personality and cause difficulty in interacting with the world or the world interacting with them. For instance, Antisocial Personality Disorder is defined by a striking lack of conscience and scary lack of empathy and indifference toward the suffering of others. Many known serial killers have been diagnosed Antisocial Personality Disorder and this has helped professionals determine who is dangerous and what prisoners are likely to reoffend.

As detailed in oft-used Power and Control Wheel of Domestic Violence which DV advocates and use to describe the common patterns of behavior employed by abusive persons and to help victims make sense of their abusers behavior. The power and control wheel is so comprehensive and accurate that is it is a great start toward agreed-upon diagnostic criteria for abusive personality disorder.

Although there are a variety of other disorders and behaviors that persons tend to try and conflate with abusive behavior, such as narcissistic personality disorder, anti-social personality disorder, intermittent explosive disorder, addictive personality disorder, bipolar disorder, and others, none of them truly encapsulates the phenomena. Many of these disorders often mimic the symptoms of abusive personality, but none of them truly account for the fact that the central focus of the behavioral symptoms are targeted at specifically ones romantic partner and the behavioral patterns are not consistent in other situations.

Critics of this approach are most commonly from the Dating Violence Community as they are afraid that the acceptance of abusive personality disorder as an actual mental health diagnosis would lead to abusers using it as an excuse, legally and otherwise, that they are not responsible for their behaviors. Although it is likely that abusers will use any excuse they can to avoid responsibility for their actions, just because it is a diagnosis doesn’t mean it is will make the legal system more lenient on them and that it will arouse much sympathy for them. Serial killers who are diagnosed with Anti-Social Personality Disorder are not given much sympathy for their condition and few consider it as justification for their actions.

The institution of an Abusive Personality Disorder diagnosis would help dispel myths about DV making abusers more easily identifiable to the public therefore leading to more accountability for abusers. It would also legitimize what domestic violence workers already know and would make these persons with abusive personalities easier to study for prevention or intervention purposes. Also, many anti-DV laws and approachs are often labeled by critics as anti-male or biased towards males, the legitimization of Abusive Personality Disorder Diagnosis simply have the abuser identified by their symptomology

“Trials don’t come cheap.

I think most people get all the justice they pay for.”

— The Devil Amongst the Lawyers by Sharyn McCrumb (p.151). 2010: St. Martin’s Press.

Scales of Justice

 For parents and caregivers experiencing the loss of a child due to family court injustice, divorce, and other types of separation.



Know When to Ask for Help: Notice the signs of stress and seek help or support.


Common signs of stress may include- fear/anxiety, racing/repetitive thoughts, over eating, sleeping too little or too much, crying, and lack of energy (not wanting to do things you once enjoyed). It’s understandable that you would feel that way, especially if you have survived trauma, abuse, lengthy court proceedings and loss of a child/forcible separation. Be gentle with yourself. Make a plan to deal with stress, especially for times you may be triggered most like during holidays.


Get support for you: Visit/Call friends, Visit/Call Family, Go to a special place that is comforting to you (church, park, museum, coffee shop, etc), Go for a drive, Call a local crisis line, Exercise, Watch a movie, Read a book/journal

Don’t feel obligated to spend time with people who don’t support you. Avoid stressful situations or relationships with a polite refusal. Setting boundaries is important to maintaining your strength, and being able to focus on what is most important.




Make a Call: Call a support or crisis line if needed.


Here are some links to crisis numbers in the USA, most are toll free

Support4Hope Crisis Numbers- http://www.support4hope.com/crisisnumbers.htm


Suicide Hotlines: http://suicidehotlines.com/


4Therapy Hotline and Crisis Lines: http://www.4therapy.com/consumer/resources/item.php?categoryid=32&uniqueid=7006


Prayer Page Prayer Lines: http://www.prayerpage.org/1800/


The Encourage Prayer Line: http://www.encourager.us/prayer_request.htm


  Turn Up the Music: Music is a good way to boost your mood, and give yourself comforting or positive messages. Especially if you are dealing with trauma or painful memories, music may soothe or redirect your thoughts.


Take Things Slow: Don’t try to plan too much or take on too much. Give yourself time–sleep in, take a long bath, cry, make a phone call.  Adding too many activities or “should do’s” will provoke unneccesary stress, and may cause further harm. So be gentle with yourself ❤


 It’s Okay to Plan a Holiday without Your Child: It’s okay to visit friends, family or go places even if your child is not with you. Those activities may be painful, and you may feel a loss—even though your child is not with you, they will be close in your love and care for them.

 You may want to commemorate your child by saying a prayer, looking at pictures, spending time with things that remind you of them, lighting a candle, or speaking with others who are close to your family. You are going through a grieving process, and its is understandable to want to remain close to your child, in any way you can.

 If your thoughts provoke anxiety, nightmares, inability to cope with every day life or you feel“stuck” or overhelmed, you may want to seek help from a counselor or support group.


 Send your child a card or letter: Be positive, and let your child know you care. You may want to include a “treat” such as stickers, coloring sheets/mazes/word finds (etc), cartoons/comics or photos.


 Call Your Child on the Phone/Send an E-mail: If you are not sure what to say, stay positive! You may want to read a short book, sing a favorite song or have some jokes on hand.

Keep the conversation light, and centered on the moment—ie: don’t get into the past or difficult things your family is experiencing.


 Some ideas for topics to talk about: Cartoons/Movies, School, Friends, Holiday Plans, Music, Funny Stories, Favorite Memories, Riddles/Jokes, Animals, Sports

 Let your child know you care, be sure to reinforce positive messages


My thoughts & prayers are with you — Evanlee, 2009

See Also:

Common Responses After Losing a Child



Writing a Fun, Meaningful Letter to Your Child


The Judicial Conference is Now in Session
And Why It Will Tolerate Again
The Systematic Dismissal of Complaints Against Judges
Dr. Richard Cordero, Esq.
The Judicial Con ference of the U.S., the highest policy-making body of the federal judiciary, is meeting at the Supreme Court today, March 17, and may continue its session tomorrow. (Public Information Office: 202-479-3211, Clerk’s Office: 202-479-3011)
Separate meetings of the circuit judges, district judges, and the many specialized committees of the Judicial Conference are scheduled to be held at the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts in Washington, D.C., between Monday, 16, and Wednesday 18. (202-502-2600) http://www.uscourts .gov/ Among those committees is the Committee on Judicial Conduct and Disability, which handles petitions for review concerning any complaint against a federal judge or magistrate for misconduct or disability.
All their meetings are secretive so as to protect judicial unaccountability. What would happen to democracy if the president and all members of Congress were appointed for life, remaining in office regardless of their misconduct or disability, and held all cabinet meetings and sessions behind closed doors followed by no press conference, but merely a short trivial and anodyne press release?
Judicial unaccountability becomes apparent in the pending petition to that Committee concerning a judicial misconduct complaint.
It contains the equivalent of a template that other complainants against judges that engage in misconduct or are disable can adapt to their own petition to the Committee once they have reached that stage in the series of procedural stages. That series is this:
1. You file your judicial complaint with the chief circuit judge of your circuit or the complained-against judge’s, as provided for in the Judicial Con duct and Disability Act. 28 U.S.C. §351(a).
You must also comply with the Rules for Judicial Conduct and Disability Proceedings.
2. The chief circuit judge systematically dismisses it, which in 99.86% of cases –see table and graphs at http://Judicial- Discipline- Reform.org– is without appointment of a special committee and thus, out of hand with no investigation.
3. You petition the respective circuit’s judicial council for review of the chief’s dismissal.
4. The judicial council systematically denies the petition, which the Judicial Council of the Second Circuit has done in 100% of cases in the past 11 years from 1oct96 to 30sep7 –see table with official statistics at the above-mentioned petition, page N:39 (after N:51-N:84)-. The chief circuit judge who dismissed the complaint in the first place is the council’s presiding member and is allowed to review on appeal his or her own dismissal. Cf. 28 U.S.C. §47
5a. You petition for review the Committee on Judicial Conduct and Disability, which is composed of judges, the peers of the complained-against judge. In the 29 years since the enactment of the Misconduct Act in 1980 it has issued only 19 decisions. By contrast, in the 2007-08 term alone, the Supreme Court issued 67 signed opinions and disposed of 72 cases.
5b. You may simultaneously appeal to the 27-judge Judicial Conference itself –see the petition below-, which is composed of the Chief Justice, who is its presiding member, the 14 chief circuit and national court judges, and 12 representative district judges.
Thus, the chief circuit judge who dismissed your complaint in the first place is a member of the Conference too and is also allowed to exercise appellate review over his own appealed dismissal. What are the chances that he will not ask for, expect, and receive deference to his decision to dismiss, from his peers and issue IOUs redeemable when another peer’s dismissal is being challenged? Remember, their meetings are secretive.
From the first stage, that is, the complaint, the emphasis must be placed on setting forth the elements of the judge’s misconduct and/or disability and how either constitutes “conduct prejudicial to the effective and expeditious administration of the business of the courts”. See the petition, page N:1.
If the misconduct is related to the judge’s decision or ruling, then it must be “alleged to be the result of an improper motive, e.g., a bribe, ex parte contact, racial or ethnic bias, or improper conduct in rendering a decision or ruling, such as personally derogatory remarks irrelevant to the issues”. Rule 3(h)(3)(A)
In due course you reach the stage of petitioning the Committee. There the emphasis must be laid on arguing that the Committee has jurisdiction over the petition based both on the facts of the complaint and its compliance with Rule 21 and 22; and that it should exercise such jurisdiction because of the indisputable fact that by failing to do so it would tolerate its peers’ unlawful and corruptive self-exemption from discipline. The petition serves as a template for doing so.
By then you have spent a lot of money, effort, and time, and have endured or must continue to endure the consequences of the complained-against judge’s misconduct or disability; yet, his or her peers will systematically dismiss your complaint or deny your petition for review, for they must protect the status that they have arrogated to themselves: Judges Above the Law.
The chances that the judges will pay any attention to a complaint against a peer increase from 0% to 0.14% (less that 1 seventh of 1 percent) if you bring it to the attention of the media and the latter shames the judges into taking some action to give the appearance that they are able and willing to discipline themselves…at the risk of the complained-against judge yelling at them, “I know enough about your own wrongdoing. If you bring me down, I take you with me!”
The cover letter with the petition to the Judicial Conference sent to U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., as its presiding officer, asks whether he will countenance once more ‘the collegial complicity of judges covering their coordinated wrongdoing’. It requests that he cause the Conference to exercise jurisdiction over the petition and open an investigation of it when the Conference meets on Tuesday, March 17, at the Supreme Court. Could he too be brought down if he took on his peers by trying to discipline judges who misconduct themselves or are disable?
How would your bosses behave if they had no fear of being disciplined at all?
Author:  Cheryl Barnes
A Parent’s Guide to the “System” is a free online article discussing a parent’s rights when a child is placed out of home by a government agency or a parent is involved in an investigation by a government agency. It includes basic information on court proceedings, the rights of a parent and how to exercise those rights and advice on how to protect your child from abuse while in state care.
Much of the advise presented  is useful in many areas of involved by government or court officials. For example, under the heading “Demand a Copy of the Search Warrant” this could apply to dealing with Child Protective Services as easily as communicating with a guardian ad litem (emphasis on the language, not the search warrant):”Don’t be intimidated. Keep a proper perspective of the situation; you are willing to cooperate within the law.  The law dictates that a search warrant is required before entering a private home.  Your position should be:

I do want to cooperate.

I do not want to ignore proper procedure.

Why would you want to circumvent clearly established laws and procedures? 

I found the advice in this article to be very helpful 🙂


To be fair I am offering more info about Suzanne Shell. From what I have seen on the web, Suzanne Shell is a highly determined, and controversial, family advocate, author and attorney fighting for parent’s rights and speaking out against injustice in the system. If there is a balanced counter view, I will post a link. However, I am asking for respect in the position you take–personall attacks and obscenties will not be tolerated.
Suzanne, feel free to leave a statement or any info about yourself or American Family Advocacy Center if you like.

More Info on Suzanne Shell:

Profane Justice (Suzanne’s site offers information on Family Rights, Information on Training Seminars, Letter and Advice to Foster Children and much more..)

Wikipedia- Suzanne Shell

“Children of the State” by Mark Stout and Gail M. Armstrong, for “Freedom Magazine”. An article about parents whose rights were violated by the corruption of the (family services/human services, CPS) system that traumatizes children by unfairly taking them out of homes, with commentary by Suzanne Shell.




Casino Kids: How Gambling Addiction Affects Children

Gambling is becoming a way of life, to the detriment of individual and family lives. Poker is becoming increasingly popular, now offered in neighborhood bars. Buses transport gamblers to casinos from convenient locations. Exposure on TV, video games and the Internet is increasing. Gambling is being considered as a means to increase revenue for the state. A new generation known as “Casino Kids are being raised among the fast action and blinking lights, an estimated 2.5 million children in the US are affected by a parent’s gambling addiction. An increased risk of divorce, abuse, and emotional problems are associated with families affected by gambling addiction. Family treatment is crucial to coping with problems caused by gambling addiction, especially for children who are most vulnerable when family functioning becomes disrupted.

 When the Chips are Down: Gambling Addiction 

     Biological studies show that gambling addiction is similar to chemical addiction. Like a chemical addiction, a gambler is unable to control the addiction, may experience mood swings (including depression, anxiety and euphoria), may seek immediate gratification and may use gambling as a means to escape pain or unresolved issues. Both gambling and chemical dependency are disorders that steadily progress. The addiction will consume the gambler and, if not addressed, will erode family relationships and the ability to participate in everyday life. Crisis intervention is crucial as many gamblers commit suicide, experience mental breakdowns or face financial ruin.

  Gamblers are not addicted to money, but to the “action”, the thrill and arousal of gambling. Through gambling the addict may seek self-gratification or an escape from problems. As the addiction progresses, the need for “action” becomes so great that the high of gambling is comparable to a cocaine high. Gambling addictions occur in cycles of winning, losing, and desperation. The “winning phase” is marked with euphoria; the gambler may be optimistic and entertain grandiose fantasies (often making promises involving their winnings or boasting of their status as a “high roller”). The excitement of gambling leads to increased bets and increased time spent at the casino. A gambling addict may neglect personal care, blackout or abandon social and family responsibility. The “losing phase” is marked with frustration and need to return to the casino to win back losses. In the “losing phase” a gambler may develop irrational thoughts or rituals involving the “cause” of their loss and how to resume winning. The gambler may blame or guilt others for the loss.  An example would be a gambler telling a spouse, “I only win when you support me, I loose when you don’t”. A gambler may also project their frustrations on others in aggression. In the “losing phase”, the gambler may blame others for their loss, turn to substance abuse, or experience severe life disruptions.  In the “desperation phase”, the gambler spends more time at the casino; “action” becomes the sole focus of the gambler. Or the gambler may feel guilt, which invites a need to “make up” for losses. In the “desperation phase” a gambler may borrow money, sell personal/family items or commit illegal acts to get more money to gamble. Gambling will often damage relationships with others, resulting in isolation and/or withdrawal for both the gambler and those affected. As the addiction progresses, the gambler is driven by compulsive urges to satisfy their need for “action” and cannot separate the casino from any other aspect of life. Preoccupation with gambling becomes so intense (reliving past gambling experiences, planning future ventures or initiating children into gambling), it becomes difficult, even painful, to stop gambling. A gambler may stop for a time only to return to the “action”, in which the phases of gambling addiction begin again.

Cycles of family violence may occur along side gambling addiction. A study conducted by the University of Nebraska Medical Center found that problem gambling is as much a risk factor for domestic violence as alcohol abuse. Feelings of frustration, desperation, hopelessness and anger caused by gambling addiction may incite family tension, stress and overall dysfunction. Emotional abuse is prevalent within families experiencing gambling addiction. The behavior of a gambling addict is unpredictable, resulting in disrupted family routines and for a child, a lack of security. Many children affected by gambling addiction report feeling profound loss and helplessness, comparable to the grief experienced after a death. The gambler may abandon the family, deplete finances, or berate family members for not “supporting” or not “understanding” their gambling. Living with a gambling addict often is described as “living a lie” and “living a nightmare”.

  A-B-C’s and 1-2-3 Cherries: Children Affected by Gambling Addiction 

Casinos create the illusion that gambling is “family friendly” by offering daycare, restaurants and entertainment. Nothing could be further from the truth: children ARE adversely affected by gambling addiction. From a young age, children are attune to family dynamics, and are keenly aware of turmoil. Through behavior, a child will express or mimic what is experienced in the home.

    The impact of gambling addiction on children is devastating. On an emotional level, children commonly feel betrayal, depression, anger, and anxiety. This in turn results in low self-esteem or difficult behaviors (such as regression, self-injuring, aggression and addictions). Further, the casino, or reminders of, may trigger anxiety or trauma, in which the child re-experiences feelings and memories associated with the parent’s gambling addiction. Children may also become fearful and unable to trust or become close to others. When the need to “win” or experience a “thrill” is modeled by a gambling parent, children may equate love with dangerous, thrill seeking behavior—or feel the need to compete with the casino, seeking attention with inappropriate behavior. In turn, children are set up to be further victimized or become addicts, themselves. The rates of neglect and abandonment (left in locked vehicles in casino parking lots or left alone without proper care) are high for children in families affected by gambling addiction. Many children will turn to addictions, including gambling, or substance abuse. Withheld feelings may result in mental or physical decline. Financial hardship caused by gambling may deprive a child of necessities, some families experience poverty and even, homelessness.

  Fold ‘Em: Healing after Gambling Addiction  

Gambling addiction must be acknowledged as a major addictive disorder in which professional help must be sought and relentlessly pursued. Counseling is effective in addressing psychological issues as well as offering guidance in repairing family relations. In addition, parenting support groups or classes may offer important skills and insights. If a family is fleeing domestic violence, seeking help and meeting safety concerns must be addressed; the support of a shelter or social service agency will offer crucial support and resources.

      A commitment to recovery is crucial to repairing family relations, and addressing the repercussions of gambling addiction. The road to recovery will not be easy–the gambler may continue to lie, manipulate or resist treatment. Despite the gambler’s condition, the needs of the child must come first. Children who have been affected by a parent’s gambling addiction will need help from an agency that specializes in working with children, as part of their healing, in addition to seeking support and/or therapy for the family. When seeking help, a child may resist change because they are afraid of losing a parent. Positive changes must be reinforced not only by getting help but also by modeling behavior. Turning to community agencies, faith based agencies or family and friends may offer support, and assist in upholding new changes. Being part of the community and enjoying activities, as a family, will create new experiences and outlets, replacing casinos with quality time. When dealing with gambling addiction, the best bet is for the well being of the child is to get help immediately.  


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