Constantly Evolving: Puberty and Menstruation — Guest Blogger Dr. Lori Gore-Green

Constantly evolving is a new series documenting the ways in which women’s bodies change. Based on the time of the month or period of life, the series hopes to highlight the magnificence of the woman’s body. The previous “Constantly Evolving” article focused on external physical changes girls experience when going through puberty. In conjunction […] Constantly Evolving: Puberty and Menstruation — Dr. Lori Gore-Green

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Actions Speak Louder…. Guest Blogger Army of Angels: Part 2

This gesture is nice….but please don’t display blue pinwheels and claim to be against child abuse for the public eye, while treating victims with hate in private! I recently saw a school from our past, bragging about how much they care about this issue. Sadly, the AoA kids attended there during the worst of the […] via Actions Speak Louder…. — Army of Angels: Part 2

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I had a Brother

we played with bubble wrap and watched the stars we swam and skipped rocks in the creeks near our house at nine years old we were separated we saw each other at the holidays no longer knowing each other he saw me drown in drugs he knew I was sent somewhere for a year no telling what he was told we didn’t […]

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Hope Is An Action

April 2019 E-Newsletter Explore Your Definition Of Hope And Experience What It Can Inspire You To Do! Bring Change to Mind’s High School Program is proud to introduce its first collective call to action week for all participating clubs nationwide. Starting April 8th, we are dedicating this five-day campaign to the hashtag “Hope Is An Action.” We invite our entire community to join us in sharing this inspirational week with your family, friends, and social networks. Throughout this week, we aim to encourage communities to explore what hope means to them by exploring their own definition of hope, what it can look like, and experiencing what it can inspire you to do. These hopeful discoveries can be used to incite positive change while nurturing empathetic and compassionate conversations about mental health. For each day’s theme, BC2M has suggested a few different ways you can engage in this campaign. Most activities incorporate social media presence to spread the message throughout your community and throughout the greater BC2M community. We are thrilled to have our 180 clubs and more than 5.000 club members participate in our first BC2M-wide campaign activation and we can’t wait for you to be a part of this collective! Hope is something that everyone needs and it is particularly important to those living with mental illness. We ‘hope” that you will be inspired to join this growing movement of mental health advocacy and share the importance of compassion with […]

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I Believe in You #WATWB Two Year Anniversary

              Welcome to #WATWB # 22! We are sharing stories about people doing good work and bringing hope to the world.  To learn more about this monthly blogfest, visit https://www.damyantiwrites.com/we-are-the-world-blogfest/ and the WATWB Facebook page for more positive posts.   I saw Kevin Laue on television with a group of kids playing basketball. It was amazing to see the faces, looks of children feeling like they belonged for the first time. He is very upbeat and is making a difference in our youth across the country. Melinda Believe in you Tour Our mission is for every student in America to have someone who believes in them. That’s why we’ve created the Believe In You Challenge. The Challenge is for students to attend a school activity they never have before. Swim meets. Track meets. Plays. Choir concerts. Pick it, grab your friends, and go. Show each other that support! Share your acceptance of this Challenge using hashtag #BelieveInYouChallenge. If not you, then who? Believe in you Video Series    Just Click on Video STEP UP. IF NOT YOU, WHO? Believe in You is an episodic series designed to educate students and staff about the incredible power of believing in yourself, despite the challenges and trials that life may present. Hosted by Kevin Laue, and starring personalities from around the country who have overcome personal challenges to accomplish the extraordinary. Each episode comes with an accompanying […]

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1 in 6 Special Message From Anthony Edwards

Dear 1in6 Family, I wanted to take a moment and send a personal note to share a powerful and moving experience from this past week. On Wednesday, I had the incredible honor of joining an audience of survivors of sexual abuse, as well as others whose lives have been impacted, for a special screening of the two-part documentary “Leaving Neverland,” which will premiere this Sunday, March 3rd and Monday the 4th on HBO. The documentary introduces two incredible men, both survivors of sexual abuse, Wade Robson and James Safechuck. As a leading national organization helping male-identifying survivors of sexual abuse and assault, 1in6 both provided feedback to HBO on the effect of airing this powerful documentary, and recommended resources for survivors. Through this relationship, 1in6 was invited to participate in the taping of a television special, “Oprah Winfrey Presents: After Neverland,” immediately following the screening. As many television specials do, it all came together in a matter of days. Matthew Ennis, 1in6 President & Chief Executive Officer, reached out and asked if I would briefly share my story with Oprah and the audience. A short time later, Matthew and I joined over 150 fellow survivors and their guests in a theatre near New York’s Times Square for the taping. The cavernous room was filled with a positive energy I will not soon forget. Oprah, who has been a lifelong supporter of survivors and the complexities of their stories, brought us all together for an honest and probing discussion of abuse. […]

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Male Trauma Survivor’s

OF NOTE Facilitating Male Trauma Survivors’ Meaningful Involvement in Health Research   Sexual abuse is an international problem and an often overlooked public health issue for men and boys. Given the prevalence of trauma and its well-documented connection to mental and physical health disorders, the relevance of male survivor input and engagement in healthcare research is profound.   With funding […]

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MANAGING FIBROMYALGIA IN CHILDREN

Welcome to Remedy, a blog by U.S. Pain Foundation. Remedy aims to provide people with the support they need to thrive despite chronic pain. It features the information about promising treatments, tips and strategies for self-management, resources for coping with the emotional and social effects of pain, unique perspectives from patients, clinicians, and caregivers–and much more. To submit an article idea, email contact@uspainfoundation.org. Posted: January 14, 2019   By Brent Wells, DC, a chiropractor and founder of Better Health Chiropractic and Physical Rehab If your child feels tired and achy, you may not worry initially. After all, there’s nothing urgent about what seems to be mild, general discomfort. However, if your child is constantly in pain, exhausted, having trouble sleeping, and experiencing intense moods, he/she may have fibromyalgia. This condition is fairly common in adults, but parents and clinicians may overlook the possibility of juvenile primary fibromyalgia syndrome — that is, fibromyalgia in children. JUVENILE FIBROMYALGIA SYMPTOMS TO WATCH OUT FOR Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition characterized by pain and fatigue. According to experts, children will often describe this pain as “stiffness, tightness, tenderness, burning or aching.” This pain can last for months and is often accompanied by other symptoms that affect a child’s overall well-being, energy level, and emotional health, including: Tender spots on muscles Difficulty sleeping and fatigue Aches, including stomachaches and headaches Lack of focus or memory Anxiety and depression If your child is experiencing these symptoms, you should […]

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Bloques de carreteras en la vida

Todos golpeamos las carreteras en la vida, algunas semanas duraderas, otros años. Para sobrevivir a la paliza que tiene que permanecer centrado en los pasos hacia adelante, incluso los pasos nano están avanzando. Tuve la suerte, el abuso, el trauma y el odio propio comenzaron cuando era muy joven. Crecí oyendo lo estúpido que me convencí de que era verdad. […]

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Road Blocks in Life

We all hit road blocks in life, some lasting weeks, others years. To survive the beat down you have to remain focused on forward steps, even nano steps are moving forward. I was lucky, abuse, trauma and self-hatred started while very young. Growing up hearing how stupid I was convinced me it was true. I was abused, sexually abused and […]

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La educación sexual de Netflix es genial, pero se pone mal la terapia y no es la única.

Espía digital POR ABBY ROBINSON 28/01/2019 La nueva serie de comedia dramática británica Sex Education es un golpe inmediato, que pega a los estudiantes de la escuela secundaria Moordale y sus preocupaciones basadas en el sexo justo en frente de su cara sin previo aviso o disculpa. Porque esto es un espectáculo en una misión: “[se trata de] animar a la gente a arrancar la venda de la ayuda y tener esas conversaciones incómodas, torpe sobre el sexo, en lugar de embotellar todo en el interior, o pensar que tienen que ir en línea para obtener las respuestas, ” escritor Laurie Nunn le dijo a Digital Spy y a otra prensa. “Para tratar de hablar con sus compañeros o-si pueden manejarlo-a sus padres, o a sus amigos. “Realmente pensamos que eso les va a ayudar a tener relaciones sexuales más saludables. ” Es un propósito noble y por eso, nada es sanitizado. Las preocupaciones que los personajes están lidiando están pintadas en los colores más ruidosos, enfáticamente salpicado a través de la pantalla porque, como el reparto y la tripulación tienen contras “La primera campana de alarma que experimenté cuando vi que era la forma en que sugirió que el sexo y la terapia de relaciones era algo completamente dividido de la salud general de la gente y el bienestar mental, ” profesor Sarah Niblock, Director Ejecutivo del Reino Unido Consejo de psicoterapeutas, le dice a Digital Spy exclusivamente. “Eso […]

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Netflix’s Sex Education is great – but it gets therapy wrong And it’s not the only one.

Digital Spy BY ABBY ROBINSON 28/01/2019   Netflix’s brand new British comedy-drama series Sex Education packs an immediate punch, sticking the students of Moordale Secondary School and their sex-based concerns right in front of your face without warning or apology.   Because this is a show on a mission: “[It’s about] encouraging people to rip the band-aid off and have those uncomfortable, awkward conversations about sex, rather than bottle it all up inside, or think that they have to go online to get the answers,” writer Laurie Nunn told Digital Spy and other press. “To try and talk to their partners or – if they can handle it – to their parents, or to their friends. “We really think that that’s going to help them have healthier sexual relationships.”   It’s a noble purpose and because of that, nothing is sanitised. The concerns that the characters are grappling with are painted in the loudest colours, emphatically splashed across the screen because, as the cast and crew have consistently emphasised, Sex Education is nothing if not real. It does the heavy lifting, having those all-important yet toe-curling dialogues – about relationships, identity, and what healthy, consensual sex looks like – that most of us swerved like Fast & Furious drivers during our younger years, and often still do. Sex Education is just that: an education. (And we love it, by the way.) But it could be accused of falling short in […]

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It’s All About Me: Menstruation & Body Changes

  Brought to you by Medical City Women’s Plano If your daughter is approaching puberty you have an important task ahead. The better prepared her for the upcoming biological changes, the easier her transition to womanhood will be. Mothers and daughters together can learn about the biological, medical and practical lifestyle aspects of menstruation from an OB/GYN on Staff at Medical […]

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The Upside to Conflicts in Middle School

Posted on January 14, 2019by Free Spirit Publishing I’m sitting at a busy lunch table full of sixth graders. There is energy you can’t put your finger on and a deafening hum that continues from the first lunch all the way to the last. All 150 students are engaged in the same activity at the same time: communicating. With each word expressed in this lunchroom, lessons are being learned that will be filed away and used the next time there is a similar social situation. Sound confusing and overwhelming to keep up with? Just ask one of these sixth graders, and they will tell you that it absolutely is! Teachers in middle school will often comment that being with their students from one day to another is like playing tug-of-war. For every day a student makes progress, the next day he or she might fall behind, have a behavioral slip-up, and/or refuse to work. Parents might say they have never seen their children so sullen at times, and they miss the carefree nature of their son or daughter. However, these things only mean that adolescents are acting appropriately for their age. Middle schoolers are constantly making big connections, which lead to big lessons. These students will leave the lunchroom and continue communicating their way through endless life lessons until they can stand on their own two feet and approach independence. It’s going to be rocky at times, but if students can pick […]

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Barran’s Bears: How police are spreading cheer to kids. #WATWB

One sheriff’s department is going above and beyond the call of duty, using stuffed animals to comfort kids in traumatic situations. Deputy Turner Barran, of Louisiana’s Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office, talks about the impact of Barran’s Bears. https://www.today.com/video/barran-s-bears-how-police-are-spreading-cheer-to-kids-1429821507843         Join us the last Friday of each month spending good news with a special story that moved your heart. ~~~GUIDELINES~~~ Keep your post to below 500 words. All we ask is you link to a human news story on your blog on the last Friday of each month, one that shows love and humanity. Join us in sharing news that warms the cockles of our heart. No story is too big or small, as long as it goes beyond religion and politics, into the core of humanity. Place the WE ARE THE WORLD BLOGFEST Badge on your sidebar, and help us spread the word on social media. Tweets, Facebook shares, G+ shares using the #WATWB hashtag through the month most welcome. More We Are the World Blogfest signups mean more friends, love and light for all of us. We’ll read and comment on each others’ posts, get to know each other better, and hopefully, make or renew some friendships with everyone who signs on as participants in the coming months. Add your post HERE so we can all find it quickly.

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Charity Project Gave Me The Best Gift

As a teacher in a Title I elementary school I serve students with a low socioeconomic status. My students are faced with several challenges both in and out of the classroom. Despite the many challenges they face, I am aiming to increase Social/Emotional intelligence, the understanding of feelings, and using them to inform actions. Children who exhibit healthy social, emotional, and […]

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Highway to Hell *Part 2*

Childhoods antics which landed my brother or me in trouble.  I have to start with my favorite story, you’ll get a better idea of who I am. At recess in third grade I told the teacher I HAD to go to bathroom. NO, go back and play. Back to teacher few minutes later I HAVE TO GO! You’re just saying […]

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Darkness Overcomes Me

I stand watching the darkness settle in. The black dog comes to torture me. Emotions, negative feelings left behind are brought out like dolls in a toy box.  I fight, fight hard not to fall in the abyss. Mask are taken out of their resting place, the mask are for me, which one will I need today. Lies and hurtful […]

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Sexual Assault of Men and Boys

Why doesn’t Sexual Assault of men and boys receive equal, mainstream media coverage as Women? We have to help change to allow healing. Sexual Assault does not discriminate! Joyful Heart Foundation partnered with 1 in 6 to create awareness and initiatives creating a safe environment to discuss trauma with peers. Please check out both organizations for support or how you can help volunteer today.  M […]

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Emotionally Equipped

  DonorsChoose.org Mrs. Orozco has a new project! Donate to Technology Matters! to help her classroom. I want to share the type of projects teachers are doing in our school district today for the leaders of tomorrow. I included the book list, you may want to purchase some books yourself. Emotionally Equipped My students need fictional books over social issues and emotions […]

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When Bias Turns Into Bullying

By Lindsey Phillips June 29, 2018 We all have our biases — but just because bias is a universal part of the human experience doesn’t mean it is something we should ever dismiss offhandedly, either in ourselves or others. That’s because bias has serious consequences, and when left unchecked, it can turn into bullying. A 2012 study of California middle […]

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Through the child welfare kaleidoscope: A Therapist view

By Sheri Pickover and Heather Brown June 27, 2017 The amazing feature about kaleidoscopes is the endless, ever-changing scenes and complex patterns they reveal to anyone who takes the time to look. The gentlest of rotations invites a new and oftentimes completely different perspective on the same set of colorful shapes. Working with children, adults and families involved in the child welfare system is not so different. A vast array of interplaying events, reactions, concerns and characteristics make up a mosaic of factors that drive a counselor’s assessments and interventions. Any counselor who has worked with one or 100 cases involved in foster care understands how complex and overwhelming it can be to help this population. However, in using the metaphor of looking through a kaleidoscope, we are reminded of how one gentle turn of our focus can change our perspective of the case at hand in a way that will continuously drive more attuned, meaningful interventions. Knowing that the myriad shapes exist before, during and after our treatment with these clients, we can more easily remain open both to seeing and making sense of our clients, the child welfare system and its players, as well as our own experiences of these cases. Given that each turn of the kaleidoscope brings a new feature into view, we have some idea of the shapes that are there: neglect or abuse, histories of mental illness and substance abuse, court involvement, grief and […]

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About Me

I am a Survivor After years of therapy and my grandparents love, I was pulled from the abyss. I have a clear heart, no anger or self loathing. Not forgiving….forgetting, allowing me to move forward. Over the years, people brought sunshine into my life. I can’t thank them enough. You were like Angels dropping in when I needed a push or […]

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Why kids and teens may face more anxiety far more these days

  By Amy Ellis Nutt Washington Post May 10 When it comes to treating anxiety in children and teens, Instagram, Twitter and Facebook are the bane of therapists’ work. “With (social media), it’s all about the self-image — who’s ‘liking’ them, who’s watching them, who clicked on their picture,” said Marco Grados, associate professor of psychiatry and clinical director of child and […]

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RAINN: Effects of Trauma on Mental Health

SEXUAL ASSAULT Effects of Trauma on Mental Health “Every survivor’s healing journey is unique and it’s crucial that we’re aware of the effects trauma can have on mental health,” said Keeli Sorensen, vice president of victim services at RAINN. “It’s time to start speaking openly about mental health concerns, and dismantle the environment of shame, fear, and silence that too often prevents […]

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Interview With Christine Clayfield Author Of “No Forth River”

I’m trilled to take part in the Blog Tour for Christine Clayfield’s first novel “No Fourth River”. Christine its great to talk with you this morning. Let’s jump in. Your novel “No Fourth River” is incredibly personal. Starting with the brutal abuse from your father to all the siblings. What convinced you now was the right time to write your story? There are four influencing factors that made me decide to write my story. 1) My husband and daughters kept telling me, over the years, that I should write a book about my life. 2) I don’t usually share my story with others. However, sometimes when I unintentionally mention things from my past, people are intrigued. They want to know more about my life. I’ve often been told that I should write a book because my struggles would resonate with others and my life story could be an inspiration. 3) I had been jotting down ideas for a while but never started to write. When I collected enough courage to speak on stage, people often burst into tears during my speech. They came up to me after my speech to thank me for sharing my story and to tell me how inspired they were. That moment was when I decided to write my life story. I didn’t realize until then that my life story was an inspiration to others.  Very shortly after that, I started writing No Fourth River. I transformed my life and I […]

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Donors.org First Million Projects

Donors.org is an awesome Charity that supports teachers projects. Bill & Melinda Gates often provide matching funds for projects. Please check out their website, the accomplishment of a MILLION teacher projects funded is mind-blowing. I personally  give to underserved with Learning Disabilities. You pick a project that tugs on your heart. Today only all funds are matched, great chance to […]

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I Am a Kid and Something Happened

Presented by RAINN I Am a Kid and Something Happened Tell Someone. If somebody touches you in a way you don’t like or touches an area covered by a bathing suit, tell someone you trust. Say no. If somebody wants to hug you, kiss you, or touch your body, you can always tell them no. It’s not OK for ANYONE to touch […]

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RAINN: Danyol’s Story

RAPE, ABUSE, INCEST NATIONAL NETWORK 800.656.HOPE (4673) LIVE CHAT “I just want people to know that they don’t have to be afraid of their truth. Your truth is important, your truth is needed.”  Danyol Jaye was sexually abused and raped repeatedly by his older cousin between the ages of 7 and 10. The cousin enabled multiple perpetrator sexual assault when […]

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How to raise successful kids without overparenting — ideas.ted.com

Moms and dads often feel like they can’t win. If they pay too much attention to their kids, they’re helicopter parents; too little, and they’re absentee parents. What’s the happy medium that will result in truly happy, self-sufficient kids? Here are five tips. 1. Give your kids things they can own and control. “Enlist the… via How to raise successful kids without overparenting — ideas.ted.com

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9 Pieces of Practical Advice about Bullying

IDEAS.TED.COM Oct 25, 2017 / Rebekah Barnett A teacher, psychologist, crisis-line supervisor and others share their suggestions for what you can do. Bullying knows no borders — it occurs in every country in the world — and its impact can last long after the incidents end. For National Bullying Prevention Month, we asked people from the TED community who have […]

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Change.org: Restore the Rights to Rape Victims

Change.org Impeach Judge Gregory S. Ross and restore the rights to rape victims.  Christopher Mirasolo, 27, was convicted of raping a 12 year old girl and two other girls, 13 and 15 in 2008. Mirasolo was sentenced to one year in the county jail but only served six and a half months before early release to care for his sick mother. In March 2010 Mirasolo committed a sex assault on a victim between the ages of 13 and 15 years old. He served four years for this offense. The 12 year old girl he raped in 2008 got pregnant due to being raped and Mirasolo is now seeking joint custody. THIS IS UNCONSCIONABLE! The judge not only is granting custody, but he disclosed the victim’s address and forced Mirasolo’s name to be on the birth certificate of her now eight year old son WITHOUT HER CONSENT.  This judge needs to be removed from the bench and this victim needs to have herself and her young son protected from this monster. HE IS A PEDOPHILE and a CONVICTED RAPIST! This all began because the victim had applied for government assistance and the prosecutor forced a paternity test. Judge Ross did NOT have to compel custody without the rape victim’s consent. Under the Child Custody Act, he could have compelled Mirasolo to pay support without giving custody. Read more here: http://www.eclectablog.com/2017/10/judge-who-awarded-michigan-rapist-joint-custody-with-the-woman-he-raped-as-a-child-had-other-options.html This young girl chose to protect her unborn child and now Judge Ross […]

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Children’s Bureau: Law and Policies

Laws & Policies Listen The Children’s Bureau provides guidance to states, tribes, child welfare agencies, and more on the complex and varied federal laws as they relate to child welfare. What’s New in Laws & Policies This page provides resources and information about new federal legislation, regulations, and Children’s Bureau policies. Child Welfare Policy Manual The Child Welfare Policy Manual […]

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Male Child Sexual Abuse and Homosexual Confusion

Blogging started as a coping mechanism to grieve my Granny. Spending years writing about how my grandparents unconditional love saved me from myself. Before long my post centered more around my traumatic background, it was seamless not a conscious decision. I have learned everyone’s trauma is different, even when they appear the same. I knew nothing of men’s sexual abuse. Five years ago I met several male friends who were sexually assaulted as children and adults. None of my traumatic experiences prepared me for how different boy’s and men process sexual assault. To all the Men Survivors of Sexual Assault, please know you are loved and supported by those without understanding the pain and trauma inside. You are loved for who you are. I found this video on YouTube by Mark Sanford. I don’t know him and not endorsing in any way. I am acknowledging his trauma, the pain and deep emotional suffering he went thru. Honestly, I don’t know if the video will help anyone. Please know I’m committed to learning all I can about Male Sexual Assault because I care. I know the pain of dragging the self-hatred around for years. If the video is crap please tell me, I learn from feedback. Share what’s helpful, thought-provoking or out of left field. I’ve been asked to write for Men’s Movement, http://www.mensmovement.com  an organization supporting men’s mental health and personal development. Please check out their site. Soon to come a […]

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Support Parents Efforts to Save Baby *Let Parents Decide on Critical Illness, Not Judge*

This family is having their most difficult times spread across the news. The British government has ruled in favor of the hospital to keep baby on life support and not allow parents to come to America for an experimental drug. I think it’s a sad day when government over rides parents in the welfare of their baby. People are so supportive of the family, having rally’s outside the hospital, American hospitals have offered to treat him free of charge. With the out pouring of support, it’s mind numbing to think government and the hospital have more rights than the parents. They want the best for their son. It breaks my heart to see the parents plea and cry. M https://www.aol.com/article/news/2017/07/10/british-judge-looks-for-new-evidence-in-case-of-critically-ill-b/23024052/

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DonorsChoose.org Helping Teachers Helps Students Learn

DonersChoose.org Supporting a great cause doesn’t require a large donation, any amount stacks up and when the goal is reached you feel satisfaction. I live in Plano, Texas where a number of school are underserved and underfunded. When I receive an email from a School Teacher needing help, I look for projects with matching funds, ask myself if this the project hits my heart? The amount donated isn’t the point, you donate to Teachers and Children, who are our future. The children are already several steps behind other students, if I can make a difference in a child’s life, it’s a privilege. Teachers listen up, this is a nationwide project and changes are one of your fellow teachers has submitted a project or the school isn’t aware of resource.  “Listen to Reading” My students need personal CD players so that they can hear what fluent reading sounds like and so that they can become more fluent readers themselves. My Students “When you can read then you can go to Kalamazoo or Idaho”. This is a line from one of my favorite poems. It is so true and my goal as a first grade teacher is for my students to learn to read and to love to read! I teach first grade to ESL, bilingual, and regular ed children at a Title 1 school in an urban district. The majority of my students are low socioeconomic and they are all very active and […]

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Unconditional Love-The Sacrifices Never End

My grandparents loved me unconditionally with words, most importantly their actions. They saw the effects of abuse and neglect from a distance, I never said anything or make accusations. Granny spent extra time with me, giving me a long bath, washing my hair, scrubbing dirty feet, knees and elbows. She pampered me with few words spoken. She had the ritual, after drying off and hair not dripping she would wrap me in the towel, carry me to the bed, put baby powder on me then tell what a cute and funny/beautiful/any compliment I could comprehend at the age. Granny knew I was dead inside from years of abuse, she never spoke bad of my mother even though tormented by my pain  My grandparents made sacrifices until God deemed the time was right. My music teacher called me into the hall and would not accept my explanation for the bruises all over the my face. She asked me go to the Counselors office, I begged you don’t understand saying anything only makes it worse for me. I arrive in Counselor’s office, asking to call my Granny. I told her everything, she had seen the bruises, my underarms bruised and bleeding from my mothers stabbed finger nails. Some of the most traumatic years followed. God knew when the time was right, at 12 yrs old my grandparents received full custody. It came with one condition, giving the Sate of Texas custody for one year for […]

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Male Sexual Assault-Road to Recovery

Mens Health Month RAINNEWS June 2017 Men and boys who have been sexually assaulted or abused face the same mental and physical effects as other survivors. Cultural stereotypes about men and how they portray masculinity can sometimes feel toxic to male survivors, adding additional challenges to their experience. Recovering from sexual assault or abuse is a process that looks different for everyone, and it’s important to support a survivor, no matter their gender identity. Focusing on self-care after a sexual assault is a vital step toward recovery. Sexual assault can affect the physical and emotional health of a survivor, so it’s important to address both components of self-care. Should a victim choose to seek professional help, therapy can provide a space to openly discuss their thoughts and experiences. One out of every 10 rape victims is male. It’s crucial to remind male survivors that they are not alone and share the services available to help them through their recovery. Survivors can call the National Sexual Assault Hotline 800.656.HOPE (4653) or visit online.rainn.org to be connected with local sexual assault service providers in their area. RAINN also partners with 1in6, an organization dedicated to helping men who survived unwanted or abusive sexual experiences in childhood. If something happened to you, know that you are not alone and help is available. This Men’s Health Month—and all year round—join RAINN in supporting all survivors. https://www.rainn.org/news/male-sexual-assault-road-recovery Thank you for reading. RAINN is an excellent Sexual Assult resources for men […]

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The best possible thing you can do to help your child through your divorce

Most kids will suffer for a short time after a marriage ends, but what exacerbates and extends their stress and anxiety is when they feel torn between two parents, says communication researcher Tamara Afifi. Fifteen years ago, I was doing field research for one of my first studies on divorce (TEDxUCSB Talk: The impact of divorce on children) and I experienced a moment that had a huge impact on me. I was going into families’ homes and spending four to seven hours interviewing them. In one house, I sat down with a 12-year-old boy and asked him about his parents’ divorce. He was having difficulty concentrating at school, he told me, and his stomach often hurt. When he said his parents fought a lot, I asked him if he talked to them about it. “No,” he answered. “Because if I bring it up, it makes the fighting worse.” Parents don’t always know what their kids are thinking because, like this boy, they keep their feelings to themselves. As a result, they go around believing everything’s OK with their child when it’s not. Kids may suppress their emotions for a number of reasons — they don’t want to make their parents upset, they don’t know how to express themselves, or they’re simply too absorbed with their grief. After I talked to that boy, I thought, “I have to do something different to show parents how their fighting is affecting their kids’ bodies.” […]

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I keep Moving Forward: *Not allowing My past to Chart the Future*

“If you are always trying to be normal, you will never know how amazing you can be.”    Maya Angelo I am a Survivor My grandparents unconditional love pulled me from the abyss. After years of Therapy, I have a clear heart, no anger or self loathing. Not forgiving….forgetting, to allow myself to move forward. Over the years, people brought sunshine into my life. You were like Angels dropping in when I needed a push or pat on back. My mother and stepfather physically and emotionally abused me until 12 years old. My stepfather beat my mother almost daily starting with hitting her head side to side down the hallway, the hallway ended at my room. Everyone in the house lived in hell, I got an extra dose. As a small girl, I dreamed my father would save me from the traumatic abuse. The dream was over, he started sexually abusing me as a child. It was innocent at first or so it seemed. At 12 years old I moved to my father’s. It’s impossible to wrap your head around sexual abuse at any age. In 1992 my father committed suicide. Estranged since my teens, we talked several times before his death. He called delusional and paranoid. Saying someone was tapping his phone. He told me about committing suicide, I told no one. The news devastated Granny her only child was dead. With a closed casket service it’s hard to reconcile death when you can’t […]

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Howard school staff, mental health experts weigh in on suicide depiction in Netflix series

Andrew Michaels Contact Reporter Howard County Times The Netflix hit series “13 Reasons Why” has the Howard County school system, and schools in neighboring counties, warning parents about the show’s graphic depictions of teen suicide, rape and bullying. At the same time, many are saying the show opens a doorway into conversations on suicide and other “uncomfortable” topics. The streaming service’s show caught viewer attention nationwide after its debut in March. The show follows the story of high school student Hannah Baker, who commits suicide and leaves behind 13 cassette tape recordings for her peers, who she said contributed to her decision to end her life. Based on a 2007 novel with the same title, the graphic depictions in the 13-episode show – rated TV-MA for mature audiences only – raised concerns among mental health experts, educators, parents and youth. Efforts against the show include that of Oxford High School students in Michigan, who started their “13 reasons why not” project, discussing their uplifting stories about getting help during tough times every day throughout May. Three episodes feature explicit material, such as rape and suicide, and have “viewer discretion advised” warnings. In a statement earlier this month, Netflix said that they added more warnings before the first episode, following critic response. Original messages before the graphic episodes also reemphasized its content. After becoming the “most tweeted show of 2017,” according to Variety, “13 Reasons Why” was renewed for a second season, to […]

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Everyone Suffers in Abusive Household

Original post 3/2014 Everyone suffers in an abusive environment. Our house was always in chaos. An alcoholic stepfather who abused my mother and a mother who abused her daughter. There were three other children in the house who saw the abuse, heard the screams and threats. I used to think the victim was the only person with scars. At 9 years old I survived almost daily beatings by taking drugs, plenty of alcohol and trying to kill myself. It never occurred to me my brother suffered from witnessing the abuse. My brother’s scars are from seeing our stepfather beat our mother. Dragging her down the hall beating her head from side to side. Putting a knife to her throat saying he would kill her. Most of their fights ending in front of our bedrooms. We had front row seats to hell. My mother abused me, the methods escalated as I aged. I heard stories of abuse as early as six months old. I don’t think my mother was trying to kill me. She’s like the women on the news who allow their kids to die. She didn’t push my head under the water but would have crocodile tears if I drowned accidentally. One weekend driving back from Houston we passed the exit to my mother’s house. I had strong emotions about my brother not me. I didn’t understand the emotions. It hit me like a train, my brother was not […]

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CDC Provides School Violence Resources

A Division of the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention Injury Prevention & Control : Division of Violence Prevention Published August 2016 Resource links updated August 2016 Edwin R. Gerler, Ed.D., North Carolina State University In the United States, an estimated 50 million students are enrolled in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. Another 15 million students attend colleges and universities across the country. While U.S. schools remain relatively safe, any amount of violence is unacceptable. Parents, teachers, and administrators expect schools to be safe havens of learning. Acts of violence can disrupt the learning process and have a negative effect on students, the school, and the broader community. Much of the information contained in this document can be located at http://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/youthviolence/schoolviolence/   https://www.counseling.org/knowledge-center/practice-briefs/articles/school-violence   Content source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Division of Violence Prevention

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Wapama Falls on Hetch Hetchy Trail, Yosemite

  Wapama Falls (1,400 feet) Flows: all year, with peak flow in May. Relatively few people visit Hetch Hetchy Valley to see this roaring waterfall. In some springs, the water from this fall flows over the footbridges near its base. You can see this waterfall from the parking lot at O’Shaughnessy Dam or you can hike on an uneven trail to near its base (see a list of Hetch Hetchy day hikes).

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 Sending Hugs to My Friend Gavin :)

Sydney Opera House and Harbor Bridge I’ve known Gavin from years of blogging and helping each other. Blogging with Gavin is a dream. He works continually to improve his skills as a Photographer. Go check out his Blog, http://www.sedge808.com. Treat yourself by visiting the Galleries where his work shown. Glancing at Australian Vacation photos, I immediately thought of Gavin. Showing […]

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Sending Prayers to Noah Buble, Micheal Buble, all Family members.

For Micheal Buble nothing is more important than his family. This week it was announced, three year old Noah, was diagnosed with cancer. I send prayers of love for you and family. I pray for Noah’s strength, courage, know your parents are always at your side. God take the Buble’s family, please help the  family fight through a very difficult time. Give the parents the energy when one is feeling overwhelmed.  God will help you everyday.      

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Conversation: Autism and Bullying

Our friendship began on Twitter, She’s a lovely women. We talked most days about James Bay, she helped James while he was on tour. We are both addicted to JB!  We always had videos or photos to share. Her son was beaten terribly by another Autistic boy in his class. It was heart breaking to hear the school didn’t even call her. She found out when he came home from school, devastated, he was closed off, barely spoke. A fight broke out in the cafeteria, another Autistic boy beat her son so badly he came home and left hospital in a full leg brace, broken ankle, bruises all over his body from being kicked repeatedly. I have to add the bully was known for violence. She hired a lawyer, the school had not taken action. She was allowed watch the video of the fight, tears flowing, hands shaking, she was in a state of shock. She is brave enough to say her son will not return to school until an investigation is completed.  A complete investigation should bring the truth to the surface, it’s all on tape!  I believe other parents are concerned about their children. Every school must have an escalation plan, teachers and school administration are taught, “How to see trouble starting” I believe the monitors are accountable for their lack of action. Bottom line, School Administration is responsible for all their employees. I thought about how many blog about their […]

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Mother leaves 8 year old at County Hospital

Original post 6/2014 It’s interesting the events our mind suppresses until memories spring back like yesterday. I have no emotion talking about the physical and emotional abuse at the hands of my mother and step father. I have disassociated memories of sexual abuse by my father. I know it. My therapist and I have talked about it, she doesn’t push and knows if the door opens I’ll talk. What I will not do is force my mind and body to endure pain it’s not ready for. I have a good perspective on what I’ve survived and the methods our mind uses to deal with our deepest pain. I’m not sure if this particular memory was forgotten or suppressed. I had no emotion as my therapist was almost brought to tears. I saw a news story about a 8-year-old girl tortured by parents, beaten, starved and chained to a column on porch left for dead. The imagine seared into my mind and did not let go. I sat down in the Therapist lobby and the memory of the little girl crossed my mind. As we walk to her office, I ask if she had heard the story then adding my thoughts. I started to cry which I do easily for others in pain. As we talked about what type of parent would do that, a childhood memory flooded over me. The tears dried as if was talking about someone else. When I […]

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Take Opiates? With Benzodiazepines? New Black Box Warning

The FDA announced a Black Box Warnings for Opiates and Benzodiazepines medications taken together. BLACK BOX WARNINGS are the highest warning the FDA issues on medication. I was surprised by the number of each I take daily. Call your doctor for updated prescribing information. Subscribe to the Weekly Digest for up to the minute information. FDA MedWatch – Opioid Pain or Cough Medicines Combined With Benzodiazepines: Drug Safety Communication – FDA Requiring Boxed Warning About Serious Risks and Death http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch/SafetyInformation/SafetyAlertsforHumanMedicalProducts/ucm518710.htm?source=govdelivery&utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdeliver

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Happy Birthday Daddy

Today would be your 76 birthday, there are a few things to say. I don’t know if you were with God in your final hours. I can’t assume you asked for forgiveness, I can’t assume you’re in Heaven. Granny and Gramps went to their graves not knowing the pain you inflicted on me. Granny would breakdown, I would not cause her such pain. You told me several times you were going to kill yourself, I didn’t doubt. I chose to keep the information to myself. Granny was never the same after taking your life. You called delusional, hallucinationing your phone was tapped. I found the cassettes, listened to every one, it’s sad where the mind can take us. I have an idea how difficult it must have been living with a delusional mind. Years soften the memories and pain, time doesn’t mean forgiveness. I choose to move forward building a healthy life. I’ve forgotten those times, their packed away, never to share. Your son doesn’t have recollections of the worst times, he hardly knew you, you two didn’t spend much time. He knows nothing of my pain, like granny, he will go to his grave knowing none. I talked with your half-brother Michael last year, he had photos and fond memories of you, the times you shared. Thru him I learned your side of the family suffered from depression for generations back. Until next year Melinda

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A Mother’s Guilt

      Daughter My Birthday wish for You I hope that every candle brings a new wish. I hope the Smile that lights your face stays there all year-long. I hope everything  you’ve dreamed it will come true. I hope you know how much I love You and how proud I am of you. Happy Birthday With So Much Love. Card from my Mother You can’t give back what you took from my life. Xx  M

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Child Marriages, life of beatings and Sexual Assault by husband

  When I was 14 years old, I was kidnapped for a marriage to a much older man, as depicted in the film Difret. On the day I was abducted, I was raped by my would be “husband.” I knew I had to fight back and escape the first chance I got. I was taken to a hut and locked up. When I received another visit from my abductors I saw my chance. When he was suddenly called away, he left his gun leaning against the wall and the door unlocked. My father had taught me how to fire a gun, so I took it and ran. When he and his friends chased me, I shot him. It was the most terrifying, horrible ordeal of my entire life — and I’m one of the lucky ones. I was accused of murder and after 2 years in the courts, the judge ruled that it was, in fact, self-defense. My trial led to a re-examination of this tradition and the Ethiopian government is now working to end child marriage and female genital cutting by 2025. In addition, the African Union recently launched a campaign to end child marriage across the continent. I am now dedicating my life to working on this issue and to give voice to the screams of unheard rural women and girls. I don’t want to see the same story happen to any more girls. And yet, it still is. […]

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TED Talks: 10 Video Playlist on Autism Spectrum

I love Ted Talks, any subject, any time, presentations less than 20 minutes long. If you have an interest in the Autism Spectrum one or many presentations may answer your questions. You can search their mass library at http://www.ted.com. Sign up it’s free. http://www.ted.com/playlists/153/the_autism_spectrum?utm_source=newsletter_weekly_2016-04-02&utm_campaign=newsletter_weekly&utm_medium=email&utm_content=playlist_button Xx  M

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Faded Memories II *From Melody to Mody*

I was born with healthy lungs and strong personality  My parents chose Melinda Melody 1963. Melody was my fathers idea. To this day, my mother calls me Melody. I thought it was emotional abuse. In truth, She hated my father and used the name he chose. Emotionally  broken down to unconditional love of my grandparents. God Blessed me with my grandparents, I can’t repay you with words. What I can do is support others. I became a Minister and started a charity. God give me the strength to mentor children. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Living in a household with child abuse and domestic violence, the days without violence can disappear. The memories, faded memories can trigger deep pain if the door is open. My trigger thru me in the abysses from listening to a song listened to hundreds of times. I felt like a bomb landed in my lap, the arrival created complete chaos.  The memories were part of the chaos in my life. Shortly after the divorce from my father, my mother married shortly and my father married later. My brother and I called him the Nazi. He was an alcoholic, possessive and we marched to his beat. The verbal abuse started and shortly escalated to domestic abuse. We walked on eggshells constantly. A couple years into marriage my mother finds out he was married before with two children. We starting going to Houston regularly without knowing why. He was fighting the mother for […]

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Joyful Heart’s Male Survivor PSA Series

NO MORE Excuses: The Male Survivors Series We recognize that male survivors are met with persistent and harmful responses: That sexual abuse can’t happen to guys. That they just need to get over it. That guys wouldn’t “let” that happen to them. In 2016, Joyful Heart partnered with Viacom and 1in6, a leading organization that provides support and information to adult male survivors of childhood sexual abuse, released a new series of video and print ads—adding to a suite of print ads released in 2014—specifically addressing the myths and excuses that male survivors hear. They invite men who have experienced unwanted or abusive sexual abuse in childhood, and those who care for them, to visit 1in6.org for help. In case you missed it, I wanted to share our new series in Joyful Heart’s groundbreaking, celebrity-driven NO MORE PSA campaign developed in partnership with 1in6, a leading organization providing support and information to male survivors of childhood sexual abuse, produced by Viacom and created by Rachel Howald and Young & Rubicam. The PSAs are already airing across Viacom’s networks, and tomorrow, you’ll be able to see them during the eighth #NOMOREexcuses marathon of Law & Order: SVU on USA Network, starting at 1pm/12c. WATCH THE NEW VIDEO http://www.joyfulheartfoundation.org/programs/education/no-more/psa-campaign/no-more-excuses-male-survivors-series#sthash.cIxU9PCn.dpuf Today, I wrote on our blog about why we’ve been partnering with USA for these marathons since 2014. We already know that television and media have the power to shape and change attitudes. And […]

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Rest in Peace Grandma * I hope your heart is cleansed of Anger *

Original post 11/2014  You receive from the world what you give to the world.  Oprah   My maternal grandma died this week. I have no emotion. I would like to tell a story of a grandma and her granddaughter bonding and building memories. I can’t write about bonding because booze was her best friend. My grandfather an alcoholic as well, I can’t recall his voice. I walked into their house, the smell of Scotch over whelmed me. I wanted to get sick. My grandfather always sat at the dining table, a tall glass and bottle of J&B no more than arms length.He stared ahead and didn’t participating in the conversation. My grandmother verbally abused me every time I visited or talked to her. I have no ill will for her, I live in the present. As a teenager, I felt cheated not having a relationship with them. Everyone carries baggage. She has to account for her choices in life before our maker. She birthed my abusive mother. My grandma had pent-up anger and aimed for me. The ones I heard most often “it was my fault my mother got pregnant” or “I ruined my mother’s life” or the most painful “you were a mistake” I lived for years hearing those words repeated, I felt so small. I’ve struggled for days deciding if I wanted to acknowledge her life and death. I believe every one deserves acknowledgment at death. I hope my grandmother […]

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What’s Love Got To Do With It?

Original post 5/2014 We do things for people we love not for those who do not deserve love. I woke today with a tug, my introspective mood. I save difficult post for days like this. It’s not depression or sadness more logical than emotional. Dissociation is a conversation my therapist and I have talked about for 15 years. When I talk about child abuse at the hands of my mother and stepfather my mood is flat. One of the ways I survived was putting each memory in a box to deal with later. After awhile some memories fade. Other’s are  yearly reminders. My mother still sends Birthday and Christmas cards. About 15 years ago she sent a Birthday card triggering the last blow. She basically said “I’m not the only person with problems get over it.” Nothing ever changes, everything is about her. I had not thought about my mother yet would send thank you notes for Christmas gifts. I didn’t think about it, just on auto pilot. This Birthday card was different, it pissed me off almost to almost losing it which I rarely do. I took the card to my next therapy appointment. I sit down and Diane knew something was very wrong. I handed her the card and the inscription written in the book. Diane was a cool therapist, she knew me well. She could tell the anger was building and ask what was my next step. I […]

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Good Times Gone Bad

I started Looking for the Light on 2-22-2014, exactly 22 years after my father’s suicide. Every year on the date, my emotions/logic are so conflicted. I stopped drinking years ago but every year I get drunk, my coping mechanism. I thought my dad was cool as a child and we had lots of fun. My father had no clue how to parent, it was scream or give in. My brother and I where seeing my father every two weeks. My father (married) had a girlfriend and liked to party, 8:00 p.m. on Saturday nights he would head out. We were left with our step mother and step brother. It was boring for me. I remember the weekend well. I got dressed, put on my stepmother’s make up and said I’m going with you. He said no at first but it was the well ask me again type of no. I said I had to get out of the house. I’m 9 years old but I looked older, not that much older. I received a lot of attention from the guys and it made me feel good. It made me feel pretty, when I got older the memories screwed up my view of relationships. Being the life of the party was great. I know there were several men who would have slept with me if I’d let them. My dad had one club he liked, I became a regular. He would find a couple of […]

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY DADDY 1940-1992 **A Daughters Elvis Tribute**

Original post 8/2014 Elvis Presley had a lifetime fan in my father. I remember playing his Elvis records at 4 yrs. old. Jumping on my friends pink canopy bed with hair brushes belting out Jailhouse Rock. After the divorce Daddy would visit driving to a mom & pop store, we’d get bottles of RC Cola, sitting in-car belting out to the radio. We had to drink  in the parking lot because the bottles required a deposit, after finished daddy would  take back for the deposit. I think it was a dime. My father was one of my abusers, I have few good memories, they’re cherished. I forgave my father, choose to focus on this nugget. My father was mentally ill, committing suicide in 1992. Abuse complicates grieving,  warm tears roll down as I write. Tears for my grandmothers pain and the years I didn’t have a father. He was reading the Book of Job during his last struggle, the last moments between him and God. To daddy

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D I V O R C E

Original post 5/2014 It was a normal Sunday like any other. I’m 6 and my brother was 3 1/2 years old, my mother was taking us to the lake. We never went to the lake, I began to get excited about playing in the water. I also grew concerned, what did she have on her mind. Even at 6 years old I knew she always had an agenda.We pulled up to the picnic tables on the far side of lake, nowhere near the water. She tells my brother and me that our parents are getting a divorce. Not understanding what it meant I ask her to spell it for me. I kept repeating the spelling in my head so I could ask my friend. I would find out sooner than later. Gramps truck was overflowing my father’s belongings. They were driving off as we rounded the corner. Their relationship went from bad to hell on earth. My mother took every chance to tell us how much she hated him. She married within six months his name was R known as (Nazi & Lucifer). He was her supervisor at work and could get her the white picket fence. We moved into a new house with a big back yard, things looked so normal on the outside. If people only knew the carnage on the inside. Custody was a nightmare, daddy would bring us home and she would throw things at him. One time […]

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Andy Warhol’s “So Sweet” *Live For Today*

Original post 5/2014 I had to buy this Warhol because it was the complete opposite of my childhood. I saw the happy little girl and thought about me in kindergarten. She’s carrying a bag of candy and a good report card, again not me. What makes it so special is my mother told me I was stupid all the time. I began to believe her. You look in the corner and see “So Smart”, words I love to hear. I wasn’t stupid, just carrying a heavy load. No kindergartener can handle the burden of that secret. Warrior

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Mother leaves 8 year old at county hospital

Original post 6/2014 It’s interesting the events our mind suppresses or forgets. I have no emotion talking about the physical and emotional abuse at the hands of my mother and step father. I have disassociated memories of sexual abuse by my father. I know it. My therapist and I have talked about it, she doesn’t push and knows if the door opens I’ll talk. What I will not do is force my mind and body to endure pain it’s not ready for. I have a good perspective on what I’ve survived and the methods our mind uses to deal with our deepest pain. I’m not sure if this particular memory was forgotten or suppressed. I had no emotion as my therapist was almost brought to tears. I saw a story on the news about a 8-year-old girl tortured by her parents in some way. I don’t recall the circumstances. I always plan what I want to talk about but this day was different. I sat down and the memory of the little girl crossed my mind. I asked her if she had heard the story then adding my thoughts. I started to cry which I do easily for others in pain. As we talked about what type of parent would do that, a childhood memory flooded over me. The tears dried and it was if I was talking about someone else. When I was 8 years old I started having […]

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Do you know me at all?

Original post 3/2014 It’s been an emotional month with thoughts of my father’s suicide and writing about him for the first time. I never grieved my father, the emotions caught me by surprise. It’s been very confusing because my father was one of my abusers. I am having health issues which is stressful. The Black Dog has come to see […]

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Nine years old living in Hell

Original post 4/2014 My brother and I called our stepfather a Nazi because he was mostly German and he would beat our mother unmercifully. Her crimes as we knew were not having dinner ready or not warm enough. The kids were to loud, noise was not allowed in the house, he was an alcoholic with major control issues. I was 9 years old, my brother six & half years old and our two-step brothers where much younger. They came to live with us after Houston Social Services found my stepfather the better parent. Of the choices, he was. Their mother was a drug addict. He never saw the boys after the divorce. By the time they were in the court system, they had been left at home for up to two weeks with no food, nothing. The youngest in the same diaper. The youngest experienced trauma so severely he regressed to a baby. Her addiction took over her life for that matter she may have forgotten she had kids until she came down enough. I hated my stepfather from the beginning, he didn’t wait to start controlling everything. He rarely talked to my mother it was always yelling. It was very complicated for me. I hated my mother for abusing me but it still hurt when he beat her. We had a long hallway that passed our bedrooms. When he was out of control he would walk my mother down […]

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