IT’S FATHER’S DAY TOMORROW
By Shane Pinnegar
It’s Father’s Day tomorrow in Australia and it hurts.
I haven’t seen my daughter since 11th February, 2019. I haven’t had any positive, respectful or encouraging contact with her in that time – much less a proper explanation WHY she ran away. Until tonight, I haven’t heard from her in two-and-a-half months, and that was just another obnoxious email back then. In fact what few emails we have had from her in the past year-and-a-half have been either abusive, obnoxious, manipulative or just weird – acting as though nothing is wrong, although everything is.
Tonight I got a reply to an email I sent over two months ago. A vague explanation about a school question I’d asked, and a “how are you guys?” tacked on the end as though we’re old acquaintances touching base. Like I said, weird. I guess I’m glad she wasn’t asking for something, or abusing me, or ranting that I stopped the school calling her by a surname that’s not legally hers. (That’s all happened)
So today hurts. I’m not expecting a Father’s Day message tomorrow – and it won’t be the first Father’s Day she’s stood me up – the fourth, by my count, in fact. There have been birthdays ignored as well. Christmases. Everything. We are literally treated as though we were never a part of her family.
The worst part is that we are/were the best family she has or will ever have.
And we know why. Parental Alienation. My daughter’s mother and her sick, hateful family are vermin. They have undermined my daughter since she was old enough to crawl. They have whispered toxic poison in her ear, telling her how bad a person, or how bad a father I am. They’ve filled her head with so many lies that it’s hardly surprising she has ended up such a confused, sad mess.
I could give you literally a hundred examples (or more) of the emotional and psychological abuse these vile people have perpetrated upon my daughter, right from when she was newly born and the woman refused to allow me to feed her formula, despite the baby almost starving to death because she couldn’t produce enough milk to keep her alive. Or the time aged three when she asked my then-girlfriend, now-wife, “why is my Daddy a bad Daddy? Mummy says he’s a bad Daddy.” Through to other extended periods where my legal custody rights were stolen from me, where the child needed to see a psychologist because of the mess her head was in as a result of all the abuse she suffered from her maternal family. From us going to specialists to find out why she had night terrors and felt sick and pain in her stomach whenever it was time to go back to her mother’s. The time two years ago we went to the Family Court and the woman tried to bring the child into the courtroom for the custody hearing, only to be shouted down by the magistrate. Or the child’s filth grandmother outside the court on that occasion, explicitly defying the court psychologist and magistrate’s directions to encourage the kid to renew my legal custody rights – calling out to her from a few meters down the road, “don’t worry – we’ll get you back safe with us soon.” They are child abusing scum.
And through it all, the police, the Family Court, Child Protection… they did nothing except try to extort us for more money to go through the courts again and again, perpetuating our stress and pain and deteriorating our mental health. The politicians on all sides of the playing field who are all too gutless to tackle the issues of Parental Alienation, who pass the buck to another department, handball it from the Feds to the State governments, so it never lands anywhere and instead just floats around the ‘too hard’ basket, despite the system being so appallingly gender-biased and liar-biased.
You’d think we’d be glad to have all of this off our hands, wouldn’t you? To not have to stress constantly about when the woman would flare up again, or worry every day about how the child would be damaged or ill or confused or acting out the next time she came to us from that woman’s house?
But no, it doesn’t work like that. We always, ALWAYS, put the child first. Even now, we know that this abuse is causing her irreparable damage. Studies show that most victims of Parental Alienation will have early problems with drugs and alcohol, will be sexually active and promiscuous earlier, will most likely struggle with anxiety, depression and self-worth issues due to the guilt of the actions they have been made complicit in, and will struggle to forge stable, meaningful relationships through adulthood.
Parents who maliciously alienate their children from their other loving parent and their side of the child’s family are toxic. They are vermin. They are not protecting the child from anything, they are hiding the child from the love they deserve, which that parent sees as a competition for their own affection. Everything these scum do is self-serving, and never in the interest of the child.
The courts, the government, the police, the bottom-feeding scum at Child Support who seem specifically trained to be as insensitive and biased and rude as humanly possible whilst they unfairly steal our money to reward and protect child abusers… they can all go to whatever hell they believe in. They are facilitators for a broken system. They’ll accuse me of being abusive to them – and I have been – but they started it. They continued it. They tried to lie and manipulate me, they believed the lies without seeking evidence or giving me any kind of right of reply, as I discovered the hard way.
The system exists to do the right thing, but it does not, not by a country mile. It hurts children by protecting their abusers. It defaults belief to the mother or the biggest liar (usually both, but I know there are mothers who have lost their children unfairly as well), leaving honest, loving children and parents cruelly denied a meaningful relationship with each other. Worse than that, it spits in our faces by then stealing child support money for said children, despite legal custody being defied and the courts refusing to enforce it. A curse on them all, I say.
I don’t even talk about this much any more, not as much as I used to by a long shot. It’s not because I am any less outraged or upset. It’s just that most people turn away, ignore it, or not know what to say, and I hate making others uncomfortable.
Talking about Parental Alienation is like talking about mental health – you want to raise awareness in the community for a problem which is far more widespread than most people realise, but there is still such a stigma attached that the response is rarely a positive one. I’ve lost more friends by sharing the truth than I have received support from, by far. Some have actually told me, ‘where there’s smoke there’s fire, so you must have done something wrong.’
And don’t for a moment think I deserve this spiteful “hell hath no fury” bullshit (not that it would ever justify the child abuse) because I broke up with the woman or cheated on her or anything. The opposite is true – she cheated on me. Rubbed my nose in it, in fact. She spread lies and abused my friends, trying to isolate and alienate me from my support groups. She was toxic from the start, but she was remarkably adept at not only hiding that, but at manipulation in general. It was halfway into the pregnancy – to the DAY – that I finally saw her for who she really was. I researched pre/post natal disorders, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and other mental health issues, before concluding she was – IS – a narcissistic sociopath.
But I still didn’t leave her – I tried to get her help. Her parents refused to entertain that she was the problem, and they still do, like the ignorant low lives that they are. The woman refused to see a doctor for a referral to a psychologist, and I couldn’t force her to be honest with anyone – not even me, unfortunately. But I knew what I was dealing with, finally. The downside of that is that when she realised that saw her for what she truly was, her efforts at undermining and abusing me, her attempts to slander me to anyone who would listen, her physical assaults, her manipulations, all became more intense and more vicious. After I finally insisted that she move out, I found that she stole thousands of dollars of furniture, clothing, baby things, cash from me. She’d found a place before she moved, of course, and started taking things whilst I was working. So we can add thief to the list as well.
And then the abuse really started in earnest. Using the child as a weapon, denying my legal access, altering legal documents after I had signed them. And with every round of new court appearances – costing thousands and thousands of dollars and immense stress – she learnt a little more about how ineffectual and how biased the family law system truly is. She got better and better at hurting my wife and I through the child.
We were forced to keep the date of our wedding a secret from the child so that the woman wouldn’t find it out and sabotage it either directly or by withholding the child’s access or making her ill. (It happened on other occasions, believe it or not!)
We could not make any plans without having a conversation about ‘what if the woman tries to interfere with our arrangements?’ We literally had to factor a ‘what if…’ conversation into everything from taking a holiday to going to the movies or throwing the child a birthday party.
And don’t for a minute think that this was paranoia! We can cite many, many examples of malicious damage caused to interrupt our plans, from the child almost always coming to us with a cough or cold – almost EVERY WEEK – to the wretched woman literally refusing to allow the kid to do homework at her house. ‘Don’t do that here – do it at your father’s place, waste his time.’ I kid you not. The woman is a malicious, hateful, uncaring, piece of crap, completely unfit to be a mother.
And then finally the child went – not for the first time, but for the last one. We’d fought too hard, the courts had proven to us that they would not step in to recover my legal custody – though they still wanted hundreds of dollars to file yet another court case. We knew that all they would do is state that yes, I did have 50% legal custody… and then once again not enforce it so the woman could manipulate the child into refusing to come back to us yet again. Lawyers laughed sadly when I enquired about my options: ‘unless you have 10 or 20 or 50 thousand to waste, don’t even bother – and even then all you’ll get is what you legally have already – which means next to nothing.’
The system is broken, and now my daughter is too, destined to grow up without the love, the positive influence and encouragement, of her Father, her step-mother (far and away the best mother she ever had or will have), her grandparents, her aunty and cousins. I know so many people who lost their father young, or who were denied access to them – including my own father, and my wife. Whose father passed too early, who miss them so much it’s a knife in their chest. What they would have given to have a loving Dad in their lives, helping them, guiding them, encouraging them…
So yes, Father’s Day hurts more than anything.
If it were up to me I would stick my head in the sand and wait for the Daddy’s Day malarkey to pass… but there’s conflict, of course, in doing that.
My own Dad is struggling at the moment as he tries to collect the entire set of ALL the cancers. He now has an aggressive serve of nasty inside one of his important organs, and it hasn’t responded to chemo, so that organ has to be excised very soon.
He’s fourteen years into the fight, fourteen years since he was told he probably only has two years left. I’m so lucky he’s still around, even though the road hasn’t always been easy.
My wife and I and the dogs moved to regional Western Australia at the end of last year, and with Covid-19 restricting our movements to Perth for some of that time, it’s been hard to be away from him as he goes through another bout of chemo. These are difficult times. Lest we forget, he’s been denied contact with his granddaughter as well – this isn’t just my wife and I being unfairly punished, let alone the child – it’s her grandparents, aunty, cousins, family friends she was close to – some of whom are children and simply don’t understand. Some have asked us to explain… but we don’t understand either.
So, of course I want to celebrate Father’s Day for my Dad’s sake… at the very least I want to send some love and positive vibes – some universal cosmic energy, some earth magic born of fire and ice and dirt and stars – his way to buoy his spirits and maybe tip the scales a little in his favour.
And once again, when he gets more details and a date for his next round of surgery, I will email the child to let her know the peril her Grandad faces. And once again she will ignore it, or at best make an insincere remark about wishing him well whilst everything else she does and says contradicts that. The same as every contact she makes with us makes no sense at all.
Because that’s the real face of Parental Alienation. It’s the confusion and heartache. It’s seeing not only us and the child suffering from not having meaningful contact, but also the loving relatives who have lost their relationships with her.
It’s the guilt that will come when the kid is old enough to realise the time they spurned, that can never be made up for, and the lies they chose to side with, and the loved ones they allowed to pass without being there to support. The enormous love which they have been convinced to turn their backs on, which they will almost definitely want to know more about when they are a little older and can see more clearly what they have been denied. It’s the grandparents who might leave this mortal coil without ever being allowed the chance to rekindle their own broken relationships with their beloved descendants.
That’s the real cost here. That’s the abuse which the scum practising Parental Alienation are being allowed to inflict.
This is the abuse and the damage to our children which the family legal system allows to keep happening, as they protect and reward these child abusing vermin.