April 26th was National Parental Alienation Day and the Dads’ Resource Center supported a rally held at the State Capitol organized by the National Parents Organization.
The text of the statement by Dads’ Resource Center Executive Director Jeff Steiner.
I would like to thank the National Parent’s Organization, and Stephen Meehan for organizing this rally in support of International Parental Alienation Awareness Day.
The Dads’ Resource Center was founded three years ago by AccuWeather Founder and CEO Dr. Joel N. Myers to provide education, resources and advocacy for single fathers. We have an intimate knowledge of the real, human experience of single fathers who become disenfranchised by the legal and human services system.
We know that the data clearly shows that children are happier, healthier and more well adjusted when they have the active participation in their lives of both parents. But, the reality is, the dirty unspoken secret is, that all too often, fathers face entrenched institutional biases and barriers that inhibit their ability to play the role in the lives of their children that is needed.
We see it routinely. Good fathers, pained from being unable to make good on the sacred commitment they feel in their bones, to be there for their children. So today, we speak to their experience. We speak to the great burden they bear, unspoken and alone. We speak to:
The hurt they experience over the loss of a family, a marriage, a relationship.
Their possibly clinging to the hope of reconciliation.
Their disappointment, self-doubt and anger.
Their being overwhelmed and beaten down.
Their frustration over the chaos, turmoil and rancor.
Their struggle with the mother over the care and management of their children.
Their being heartbroken over not being around or having limited contact with their children.
Their being disempowered as the system interjects itself onto their situation.
Their discouragement over the cost, and far too often, unreliable and inconsistent legal representation.
Their struggles to get a handle on the practical aspects of the breakup of a family – reorganization of finances, being displaced, having to re-stablish a place of residence, and the basic elements of a home.
We speak to their experience with the legal and human services systems.
Their suspicion of the collegial nature of those who work within those systems.
Their sense of being outnumbered in systems that are predominantly female staffed.
The mentality that if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.
The mentality to err on the side of caution.
The lack of definition, inconsistencies and moving of goal posts for case plans and custody determinations.
The lack of follow through and communication from those who have so much control over them.
We speak to the common perception of those within the system that these human beings, so overwhelmed by all of this, are deemed “scary.”
And, are treated as such.
We speak to the biases they encounter.
We speak to the institutional barriers that work against them.
We speak to the inequity of standards that they are held to versus mothers, in what is expected and what is tolerated.
WE SPEAK TO THEIR DISENFRANCHISEMENT.
The Dads’ Resource Center stands in support of the National Parents Organization’s efforts to advance Shared Parenting legislation here in Pennsylvania.
The law is the OS, the Operating System. It drives the thinking of all involved – the judges, the courts, attorneys, the legal community, county offices, human service agencies, providers.
We envision only true equity – for the benefit of children.
They need the balance that comes from having both parents actively involved in their lives and upbringing. A mother and father are equally important, providing unique elements vital to nurturing properly balanced children.
To not have one parent involved in their lives results in adults with incomplete childhoods, and personal development.
In order to give each child of separated families the best chance at having the personal balance necessary to be successful in life, we need to reboot our laws to ensure the right balance in matters of custody and rights of parents.
#parentalalienation #nationalparentsorganization #fatherhood #dads @dadsrc.org www.dadsrc.org