Wouldn’t Know Your Own Child If You Saw Him/Her On The Street? — Alienated, Separated, Too Long (In Memory of My Son)

Excerpt:  …. If writing of this helps avoid another loving mother {parent}, from marking a day in their own diary of life, as the day in which they do not, could not, and likely will continue not to be able to recognize their own child in a photo … then, somehow it may all be worth some of the pain that went into sharing this.

{In Memory of My Son, who was taken against custody, by his father, June 4, 2010, and never returned}

03-08-14:  Yesterday someone dear to me send me a sweet photo of what I thought to be a picture of this person’s son and his prom date. I took a moment to admire the photo, and sent a reply text remark of what a sweet, handsome couple these two young people were. After a brief pause, I received what I am sure was a difficult reply … that the handsome young man in the photo was my own son, Philip. Philip will be 16 years old next month. He was taken from me, from home, June 4, 2010, against custody, never to return. Philip and I have had no assistance during this time, by family court professionals, despite the fact that we had a guardian ad litem and psychologist appointed by the courts to see to my children’s “best interest”.


I have only recently begun to speak up, publicly, to get any attention to our cause, and our case. I have, in fact, spent most of my time, energy, and resources battling to avoid going to jail for unpaid fees for the “unprofessional” professionals in charge of seeing to the best interest of my children, instead of fighting for my children, which has been extremely dispiriting but necessary and very critical. I am sad, and ashamed, that I couldn’t do more for them when they needed me the most and it has been, IS, extremely dispiriting but necessary and critical … you have to remain alive, and out of prison, of course, before you can fight to help your children. 


All the most critical matters, addressing rights of parents, rights of children, reform, and oversight, laws, ethics, etc. all took backseat to issues of fees, and, sadly, as in other cases, children “age out” before any wrongs are ever identified, addressed, much less righted. That, and the fact that so many community leaders, and those “in charge” are uncomfortable getting involved. From all I have learned, these are the primary reasons for which these issues, this silent epidemic, has been allowed to continue for so very long.

Yesterday, the realization of accepting that I was not even able to recognize my own child in a photo washed over me in a slow and steady crush. I haven’t spent any time with, had any visitation with my son since May of 2012.

Writing has been my lifelong habit, mostly a joy, and has surely been some positive exercise for me during times when I could not speak of the unspeakable, the inexplicable. During these past months I have written, and, slowly, lately, I am learning to actually SPEAK up and out more than in the past. I confess that I recognize my writings can be too much, too overwhelming to those who read or hear …. I try always to remain mindful of that but do recognize that I often fail. The things of which I write and speak eek a pain and suffering on such levels that wears on the spirit of the reader, the listener and my words, our story, has not yet had victories, redemption, which we all need to have in order to be inspired.

I share these things with the hope that all we have experienced, all the time and effort I have put into research, all that we have sacrificed and lost may not be in vain. I am learning to try to accept that going back is impossible (very hard, for a mother, for any loving parent …  I will not wake up to be back in our happy home in Ocean Springs, with my busy, active, sweet, spiritual, loving 12 year old son and 9 year old daughter, with ever-revolving doors of friends, laughter, music, clutter, activities, dinner-time, and chatter … all the joyful noise, and choas, that makes up a busy, loving home. All I know to do at this point is recognize that we did indeed have this, it was no dream, and, nightmares have to end, one way or another.

I ask you to pray for my children, and for me. If writing of this helps avoid another loving mother, parent, from marking a day in their own diary of life, as the day in which they do not, could not, and likely will continue not to be able to recognize their own child in a photo … then, somehow it may all be worth some of the pain that went into sharing this.

{In Memory of My Son, Philip, who was taken against custody, by his father, June 4, 2010, and never returned}

March 8, 2014, by Bobbie R. Hardin

 

 

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