2018 was by far one of the most difficult years to date in this almost 10 year journey.  I’m not sure which has been harder- losing the kids or watching my husband move forward after losing the kids.  We are fighters, though.  We always find a way.  We always make lemonade from lemons.   As you know, those of us who have lived the parental alienation nightmare find ways to continually press forward.  It’s the only way we can survive.  And now we’ve decided to take all the energy we’ve spent fighting the courts and a vindictive ex into spreading awareness to the world.

The tears for me haven’t stopped coming yet, and I suspect I have a million more or so to go.  The holidays were rough.  There was no tree, no decorating, no celebrating.  There were no ornaments being painted, no stockings being made or gingerbread houses being decorated.  There were no endless hours of baking until we dropped in the kitchen.  No holiday celebration trips to St. Louis, Blues tickets or late night ice skating.  No Christmas tins to deliver or presents to open.  Just like so many of you, we too are trying to find our new normal.  Instead, there was Jack taking a shift with the Sheriff’s office so another deputy could be home with his family.  And there was me and my dog Sweet Pea, sitting on Mary’s bed in her room typing my heart out in the hopes that my words will reach you.

I remember back when it all started.  I don’t mean at the very beginning.  I mean back when the first false accusations rolled in.  The sting of seeing my name written on the first DFS report.  The disbelief of police being summoned to my door the very first time.  I remember the helplessness, anger, pain and victimization I felt.  It’s a feeling like no other.  Having no control over what’s taking place in your very own life.  Being literally attacked by another person in every way except physically.  I lived in that constant state of helplessness for the majority of 10 years.  Always waiting for the other shoe to drop.  The next attack, the next accusation, the next phone call.

I was naïve back then.  Back then, I still had hope. Hope in the court system.  Hope in justice.  Hope that the truth would prevail.  Hope in the belief that all that needed to happen was for a judge to hear about it and the alienator would suffer severe consequences.  I also remember the sting of realizing the court system didn’t care about us or the hell we were subjected to daily.  The pain of realizing the alienator may actually get away with this has forever been imprinted on my heart.

I could’ve never imagined when I wrote my very first blog post that you and I would meet.  If there was ever a silver lining in total tragedy, connecting with you would be it.  I’ve had conversations with people from literally all over the world feeling exactly as we have.   Hopeless.  Desperate.  Alone.  There are no words to express how grateful I am you feel you can reach out to me and share your story.  Thank you for doing so!  And please continue!

Through your support for S.P.A.R.K., we’ve mailed out many copies of Divorce Poison by Dr. Warshak to families fighting this evil.  We’ve also sent bracelets and care packages out to moms and dads who are desperate to hear from someone who understands the difficult and treacherous journey through parental alienation.  I know it doesn’t change their desperation, but I believe just having a positive act of kindness from someone can make a difference.  I remember feeling like the whole world was against us. Had someone reached out to us, I believe it would’ve helped us continue to put one foot in front of the other and not feel so alone.

2019 is a New Year and I will continue pressing forward in this journey and sharing our story with you.  My prayer is that you are able to understand what parental alienation looks like in everyday life.  And more importantly, I pray that you know you’re not alone on your difficult journey.

If I could take your pain away, I would.  In the meantime, I’m here to tell you again-you are not alone.  You have a friend right here.  And this friend will continue to be here for you and continue to be a voice for those who would otherwise remain silent.

Xo

Cheryl

Picture: Steinberg Skating Rink 1/1/2014

1 thought on “New Year, Same Journey

  1. We have begun our journeys about the same time. I’m so exhausted in every way. I’m numb. I feel hallow.
    I’ve stopped getting my hopes up. I have had to get to the I don’t care anymore point to stop crying at any moment someone asks me how my family is.
    Christmas was quiet. I needed that though, working 2 full time jobs. I need the income but it keeps me away from home and from being disappointed or hurt.
    I want to move away, to the woods, in a cottage, where no one can find me. I can’t be hurt and I used to being alone.
    Next Christmas I hope to not even be,any where near home. To be away from the pain.

    Thank you for all you are doing.

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