Tuesday, 15 May 2012
Families Are Too Important to Be Reduced to a Public Tug-of-War.
There is a case currently in the new here in Australia regarding the break up of a family. As it has been presented to the general public, with only the mother and her family weighing in, she left Italy where she lived with her 4 daughters, separated from her husband to come on a holiday back to Queensland to visit her family. He agreed to that visit. She did not return and has been here now for 2 years. The husband has gone to court in Italy and has an order for the girls to be returned to him, claiming she has kidnapped the girls which she essentially has done. A deportation order was issued byt the Australian Government, under international law, for the 4 girls with an order to produce them no later than midnight last night. The great-grandmother has taken the girls and is hiding them - their whereabouts are reportedly unknown by the mother. The mother has gone very public, pleading for someone to intervene and she now has a hearing later this morning here in Brisbane. A news report can be found here.
The public is outraged and demanding the children be allowed to stay with the mother, in Australia.
No-one seems at all concerned that we only have one side of the story and while the mother may be absolutely correct in what she says, she could just as equally be manipulating the system and be the very reason the marriage has deteriorated. No-one seems at all concerned that there is undoubtedly a father on the other side of this who probably loves his children every bit as much as the mother and who may himself be the victim. If he had taken the children on a holiday never to return we would be screaming that he return the children. Once again we have children being put right in the middle, involved in very adult issues that none of them should be worrying about. Not only are these girls in the middle of all of this, they are being photographed by media (with their faces blotted out) and having their letters published in newspapers. At the eleventh hour now we hear the father is abusive, but she has had almost 2 years to deal with this if she was that worried about what was going on and she has not done anything until he finally got the documents he needed to bring the girls back.
What I am saying is SHE created this stand off by not seeking a legal remedy according to the laws that are provided. "I was afraid I would lose," is not a defence. REGARDLESS of whether the father is abusive or not ... the mother created this particular situation with the choices she has made.
Now stepping aside from this one situation there is a bigger problem here that has to be addressed. Women fought for equality after years of having men in the driver's seat. Women had few rights and if it came down to his word against hers ....he always was weighed in with the greater credibility. We fought to change that. Men were not always right.
Well Men are not always wrong either.
EQUALITY was what we fought for. How can we then turn around and abuse that right and become the aggressors that we fought against? We are abusing our rights in the same way that men did and we are being spurred on and supported by other women who should know better. There is no place where this abuse is more rampant than in the family courts. Women lie and scheme and manipulate the system, and the man is always wrong and his love for his children, and the children's right and need to have a father in their life is tossed out the window. And what is worse, is that THESE women make it even more difficult for the women who actually NEED the protection of the court, who actually are in abusive situations etc to get the help and understanding they need. What is even worse than that is that many women KNOWINGLY help one another to perpetrate completely false allegations against the fathers. All you have to do is hint at abuse and the whole system jumps into action.
Don't believe me? Sit down with a man sometime who has been through it and ask him how the courts, the social workers and the maintenance system speak to him, right off the dime, without even knowing anything about his situation. Ask about the absolutely ridiculous circle of EPIC FAIL that happens when a single child payment does not show up and a man's bank account is ceased, his car registration cancelled, often making him unable to work to pay his child support. There is never credit for years of regular payments or that THINGS can happen that have nothing to do with the man trying to skip out on their responsibilities. BUT all that is required for those agencies to leap to that conclusion is for a mother to cry out. They don't call him up to discuss it, they simply act and THAT action often results in him losing his job and being unable to pay ANY child support. Brilliant!
Men are reduced to simply CASH COWS. That seems to be all the courts require of fathers in their children's lives. There is no winning for a man. If he asks for visits heis told that he works too much and does not put the children first. If he does not ask for more visits or is unable to always keep his visits because he is working 3 jobs to pay his child support andkeep himself out of jail, then he does not love his children enough.
Clearly there are deadbeat dads out there but can we please please please decide this on a case by case basis and NOT just with a grand sweep of the generalization brush, paint all dads the same colour? And again, not all mothers are Saint Theresa.
But we see this in many situations where you have a group of people who used to be victims, having achieved the rights they sought after, then turning around and becoming worse than the aggressors they once complained about. Races that have suffered discriminate now discriminate against others. People who have escaped the strict regimes of countries that denied them any freedom now seek to impose restrictions on the freedoms of the country they fled to. They don't ask for THEIR freedoms ( they have those when they arrive) they ask that the freedoms and practices of the people of the country give up their own. It is never, "may we abstain from the Lord's prayer, or may we pray our own prayer, and have our turn reciting it at the front of the class?" It is, "We want all the other kids to stop praying because it offends us."
What is wrong with all of us? If we cannot learn from our past this is just going to be one cycle of abuse after another. Someone has to stand up and say enough already. What are we gaining from all this stupidity?
We do not know the circumstances of what is going on with that family. People are fighting over this and for what? For God's sake look at those girls. Their family is being torn apart which is tough enough in privacy but this is happening in a public arena. Long after you and I have moved on to weigh in on another issue these girls will be living with the reality of the outcomes. How many children have grown up to find out that there is more to the story that mom/dad told us about dad/mom and have felt torn with the agony of knowing one parent lied while they participated in undesrving cruelty towards the other?
These children are being used as weapons, just like children of broken families all over the world. What should happen is the parents should be dealing with whatever legal issues exist, in the proper manner, without involving and distressing the children. Both parents should do everything they can to help these poor girls accept and deal with what is decided, assuring them that they are loved. These girls should be in school, enjoying their lives, not hiding out having to publicly stand against their father dealing with issues that they cannot possibly understand and certainly did not create. And I am sorry, that the mother put her girls into this circus is despicable. She is not a hero. Sometimes being a parent requires us to put aside our own wants and anger and do what is best for the child. In this case that would have been to keep them out of this.
We cannot keep waiting for the governments and laws to legislate our humanity. We have to wake up and start to think about what is right ourselves .... and do it.