We do need you.
Terrie Williams

Women want to baby their boys

I have a son about to turn nineteen, whose mother took him away when he was only four months old. I did the best I could to try and stay in his life, but her mother, his grandmother, had recently got her MSW degree rather late in life, and true to baby-boomer form, had to play with her new toys to prove she was committed to making the world a better place.

It was the grandmother, who engineered the (felony, interstate) kidnapping of an infant, and it was the grandmother who stacked the ensuing court proceedings (which took fully two years to convene, more than long enough for a toddler to completely forget the man who had greeted him on birth and changed his first diaper) with her colleagues as so-called “expert witnesses”.

The trial was a kangaroo-court lynching, of a man, for being male.

There is no other way to describe it.

Every contact I had had with all these social workers prior to the court hearings was used to take everything I said and did, with and without my son present, and build it up into a case against me. No actual abuse or wrongdoing on my part was ever alleged. I was placed on the defensive for how I think, for the out-of-context interpolations by hostile feminists of everything I said in answer to their prying, leading, trick questions, sitting there taking notes and making disapproving gestures in reaction to every breath I drew.

From the beginning, I realized that I was not the the victim of these abuses of official power and authority, near so much as my child was: he was literally taken hostage, as obtuse demands about my life were made of me in an “or else you’ll never see your son again” context. And of course by the time we were re-united when he was two, he was nervous and apprehensive with me, and that never went away between us for the several years I tried to jump through visitation hoops just to be with him at all.

The legal language was “parenting time”, when it was basically impossible to function as a real parent that way; meanwhile, sympathetic friends and family kept talking to me about their hope that I could “see” him. Neither approach has anything to do with what it is to be a father, or a father’s son.

We remained uneasy strangers together for years during awkward weekends, and it was obvious he was being aggressively debriefed and brainwashed by his mom and grandmother after each time. Once he asked my parents at about age seven or eight, if it were true that his daddy is dangerous, ’cause that was what he had overheard Mommy and Bamba saying.

Eventually, around twelve years of age, his mother dropped all pretense of going along with the court order she herself had demanded, and which she had described to me after the trial as “you won” because she was upset she didn’t get her demand of supervised visitation extended indefinitely.

She changed her phone numbers and email addresses, and even started sending back cards and gifts from my parents on holidays and birthdays, which they diligently sustained the effort to send him like any other member of our family.

That was in 2010.

A few weeks ago, he took the initiative on his own, as a legal-aged adult before the law, to call me, after literally over six years of absolute blackout between us. It was his idea, and mostly what we talked about was his coming to where I live now several hundred miles away, and seeing together, man to man, if we couldn’t figure out how to make a life together. His enthusiasm was palpable, and again, no part of the contact had been my idea by that point.

There is a vicious narrative alive and well in social-work circles, that a man trying to stay in his kids’ lives post-divorce cannot possibly be motivated by anything but a sinister wish to get to them so he can “continue abuses”, even when no abuse has ever been proven or even alleged. I was not aware during the legal phase way back when (1998–2000), that this was actual professional doctrine, part of training materials for not only social workers, but judges, attorneys, police, mediators.

What I hadn’t known then was that every word out of my mouth, every posture or gesture observed in me while in the courtroom, was being taken as a given that I was that guy, the abusive dad just pretending to want to be a real parent, because of course everyone in the room knew what it was I “really” wanted. That was what all the in-services and seminars and federal guidelines had informed them I must be all about, because I am male.

The harder I tried to do what I knew was my duty, to stay as much a parent to my child as I could, the more I was building my own gallows with these people. I had the sense all along that they weren’t hearing me, weren’t taking my intentions seriously, but only years later did I come to learn by means of intensive internet research and a lot of networking with industry people, that this was how they were trained, that their very careers and livelihoods were at risk if they were to take me at face value and treat me like a human being.

I refuse to have anything to do with farcebook and always have, but my mom and dad use it the way a lot of elderly people do, a kind of interactive greeting-card and updating service to keep in touch with far-flung relatives and old friends from back home.

They have been telling me for years now, that my son’s posts have been getting more angry and weird and vulgar, as if he is in the grasp of some random rage but with no focus or object to it, just a pissed-off young man ranting, even to the point where his own peer group is telling him to tone it down. My dad told me that farcebook actually banned him or whatever it is they call it, for violating “community standards” when his going off about the Christian home-school program he’d been educated by, triggered some algorithm designed to look out for potential school shooters.

What my dad told me was that this was not what he was blustering about, but apparently, young people irritated at their school manage to set off some auto-generated set of actions on that stupid website, and they temporarily banned him for it.

Pardon the digression, but the outcome of his contacting me the other week was ultimately that his mom or grandmother or both obviously got wind of what a legal adult was thinking of doing, coming to be with his alienated father on his own initiative.

The last time I spoke to him, he told me in a totally different tone, sounding like that scared eight-year-old again, that his mom had set him up to go work as a laborer for some relative of hers running a landscaping outfit, of course far away from where I live and of course totally cancelling the prospect in the foreseeable future that he will come here to try and coexist with his dad.

Not sure why I went into all that, other than you seem receptive to some hard truths on all this.

Not only was I actively prevented from being a proper father, but the whole activity of striking me from his life was based on a doctrine, that my trying to be one at all was what those people call “evidence of abuse.” Seriously. The very effort a man makes to do right by his children, because he is a man and a moral human being and he owes them that, is the very basis of alleging that he is an abuser, and this is how the system is geared to operate.

It is far worse than erring on the side of caution to protect children. It is an actual campaign, quite openly designed to operate in such a manner that fathering or the wish to act as a real parent on a man’s part, is in itself the only thing anyone needs to see in order to take that man right out of those kids’ lives.

It is industrial-strength, fully-automated, professionally-endorsed misandry, set in motion to begin with by the Violence Against Women Act since 1994, and used as default policy toward male parents in custody cases ever since.

It’s actually, both the personal and the bigger-picture sides of my story, a LOT worse than what I am telling here. And showing no signs in my son’s now-adult life, of ever getting better.

It is called “parental alienation”. It is intentional, it is political, it is targeted at men, for being men. And for children taken hostage this way in service of officially-sponsored radical-feminist policy, there is nothing remotely resembling any cure for what it does to them over the course of their lives.