Getting Creative About Father’s Rights

I am fortunate that people touched by all aspects of divorce view as a great place to tell their stories. Increasingly bloggers are connecting to our site as a well-rounded resource known for providing solid and useful information for men at all stages of divorce.

Everyone has a different way to tell their own story of divorce and how it has affected them and their family. Some fathers send in some of the most poignant poetry about the joys of being a father… and of the ache of being a father at a distance. Dads send me invitations to their blogs, a creative mode of expression that allows us to get our feelings out there into the blogosphere where hopefully some one else will find it and be inpired by it in one way or another.

Soon we will post our recent interview with an amateur (yet very capable) filmmaker. Nicholas Szabo recently sent me an invitation to view the documentary that he created several years ago. I watched Father Figure and was astonished by the facility with which he expressed the evidence that seems to indicate that our culture has seemingly gone to war against its fathers.

I invite you to view the documentary posted below. Our interview with Nicholas is coming soon.

Thanks to all of you who have found a way to express the frustrating and difficult to express, sometimes impossible, sometimes joyous reality of your life as a father at some stage of divorce.

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2 comments on “Getting Creative About Father’s Rights

    I have watched Nick Szabo’s film “Father Figure” many times. Currently I am suffering through a very contentious divorce and this film has helped me make more sense of my current situation than any other source. I have tried to convince many others to watch this documentary and so far have been able to convince only one family member to do so. She was horrified by the facts reported in this film and has done her best to convince the rest of my family to do so – with no success. Every time my family inquires, “How can they do this?” I ask them to view this film so they can understand.

    In my case, I was in financial straights at the time my ex-wife approached me for divorce. She was never treated in any way warrenting such a drastic move given five kids were involved. I married her with 3 kids from a previous marriage and perhaps, hind sight 20-20, I might have had some more suspicion of her, but many people were fooled by her ‘act’. We had 2 kids while we were married and they were quite young at the time (5-6yo) and the first three were 16,18,20. The 16 yo boy was living with his biological father, at the time, north of Philadelphia. We lived in Delaware and she was from Illinois originally. Due to our financial straights, I was convinced by some advice from an attorney that my best long term outcome was to let her have her wish to go to her moms house in Illinois to start with and she could get started there with her mom helping with children issues of sitting before school etc. The plan was to visit as often as possible and hopefully they would adjust to my abscence inbetween gradually. Long story short, the kids have done fairly well but we deal with the PAS(parental alienation syndrome) issue just based on my ex-wife is a negative person, nothing positive to say at all much less concerning myself. Still, I am there every 6-7 weeks for a weekend and so it is mitigated to some degree. They are currently 13 and 14 yo my 13 yo is a female, the 14 yo a male. My son does better with the ‘stinking thinking’ my ex throws his way, while my daughter has had problems in the past. Currently, she seems to be much more confident her mothers maginations are fictitious. They are usually letting it go in one ear and out the other and even ask why she is so negative outright. The man she was cheating with in 2001 when she left, just married her this year yet, the kids seem well adjusted where they are now. My son is not unlikely to change his mind and come and live with me in Delaware but admits he would be doing so because he simply hates her new husband. The subject of living away from the kids is something I am too intimately aware of and would have done differently had I had a real lawyer. My feeling is there are too many people practicing law and that most are making a living in a ‘rip off mode’ niche. My attorney and his advice were short sighted and even his senior partner once found out about it and was aghast. The damage being done, I maintain the best I can in the current paradigm. My desire has been to keep the kids stable and healthy and ending up with a good end result at age 18. I will give each 30k $ for college and a car between 16-18. Since they left I have paid all support and even convinced their mother to buy a house with the settlement money. That was a real departure of her normal behavior at the time. My feeling is that I have sacrificed any semblance of a financial advantage for the sake of my kids and the situation she created. Eventually, the support will stop and I can begin a damage repair of my lifetime goals. By then, I will have about 9 years until I need to get a retirement plan enacted. It will all be worth it if they do well as they start their adult lives. The first three did well, so I think they will do even better. The oldest is a successful Airforce computer tech, the Middle is finishing her PhD and the younger of the first three is an airforce mechanic. So hope is alive and even though trials exist, I always make my advice something which will ‘see them through’! They are told they could actually do better than they would have without the divirce because if their lives never would have had big issues then when they were grown up, those things would be too hard to bear, but this challenging childhood will actually prepare them mentally for lifes hard turns! Then I actually hear them reply, they see kids with quite worse circumstances every day. They once told me, “Their dad never even tries to see them Dad, I feel glad you keep visiting us like this, it’s fun too.” There are thousands of dollars I spend, multiple hours I drive, andthere is much sleeplessness I endure but that little statement, in a strange kind of way, is as irreplacable as any special moment a parent could have with their kids. As men we don not need a whole society pushing the importance of fatherhood to get the job done, we will make it emminantly clear come hell or high water, but just the thought of support would be nice.

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