children

The Family You Found

You weren’t close to family by blood

but you found brothers young

who still surround you to this day.

 

You pledged to brotherhood in college

and choose a career where you stand

in a line full of brothers in blue.

 

You’re the most resourceful 

and willful man I know. 

You could let me be your family too.

 

Documentary Recommendation Recap!

I just wanted to recap all the documentary recommendation articles in case you missed any! I think the ones listed below are the most interesting documentaries of each series but you should definitely click on series 5 because there were many many good documentaries in the crime category!

 

Series 1 Fraud & Cover Ups

The Devil We Know (Netflix) – Would Recommend

Devil dives into DuPont’s responsibility in the health risks of their teflon products. The doc touches on specific people affected and their stories as well as widening the scope to see how far it’s deadly consequences have reached. It’s terrifying and tragic how harmful and deadly telfon is and how companies like DuPont would rather death over profit loss.

 

Series 2 Abductions & Abuse

Behind Closed Doors (Netflix) – Would Recommend

Behind Closed Doors is a british film following the story of 3 women fighting domestic violence. It is incredible interesting to see all the complicated emotions that they go through and just how deep these wounds go. From an outside perspective, domestic abuse seems so straightforward – if they hit you, you leave. But love is irrational and there is no reasoning with that primitive emotion. These women are all incredibly strong for fighting these men through the court system and for battling with their own complex feelings daily.

 

Series 3 Documentaries to Skip

Children of God (Netflix) – Would Not Recommend

This documentary follows the memories of a family that lived in a Cult for many years. The first interesting thing about this cult was that the leader wasn’t with the rest of the cult, he just sent letters from a secret location. It’s interesting that the leader had such a presence without even being present. It focused heavily on child abuse and sexual abuse with interviews from the one family that has since left the cult. The cult even featured promotional videos that were essentially children undressing to song.

The other focus was on the sexual activities the wives were essentially forced to do such as sleeping with other husbands and members of the cult as well as sleeping with men in the outside community in order to entice them to join the cult (flirty fishing). It’s a sad documentary as the grown children recount their stories of sexual harassment and rape and dealing with the complicated resentment they have with their mother for putting them in such an environment. It’s disturbing and heartbreaking, and not at the top of my list of recommendations.

 

Series 4 Animals

Dogs (series – Netflix) – Would Not Recommend

There are 6 episodes in this docuseries following a different dog(s) in each episode. I only watched the first two and the fifth episode because those stories seemed most interesting to me. The first was a young teen girl still struggling through getting a hold on her epilepsy. She will be receiving a service dog who will help to recognize when she’s about to go into a seizure and help bring her out of it. You learn a bit more about service dogs, different jobs they can do, and the initial training they have with their new owner. The episode unfortunately ends shortly after the dog goes home with the family so you don’t know exactly how it all turns out.

The second episode is a dog named Zeus who is stuck in Syria while his owner was able to escape on a work visa to Germany (or somewhere). Zeus has been staying with a friend who is also in hiding and it’s not safe for any of them in that warzone. Zeus traveling through borders by car and plane. There are a few hurdles along the way and you’re not sure if Zeus will be reunited with his owner. Everyone loves Zeus and you feel for the friends that are now losing that piece of light in that terrifying war.

The fifth episode is about Territorio De Zaguates in Costa Rico. It’s very possible you’ve heard about it as it’s a bit of a tourist attraction that you can run with hundreds of dogs on the multi acre shelter. This shelter never turns away a dog and it warms your heart to see them get taken off the streets. As the episode unfolds though, you being to question if they’re taking on more dogs than they can handle. Food, money, water, shelter, staff, and vet visits is a lot for any shelter to take on but at this size you wonder if more is always better.

 

Series 5 Crime

I am Innocent (series – Netflix) Would Recommend

This New Zealand crime docuseries is 6 episodes following 6 different cases ranging from murders, juvenile criminals, and family cases. Based on the title you can assume that all criminals telling their story are innocent and have been wrongly convicted. You find out the details of the crime, where things went wrong, and how things were later resolved for the unjustly convicted criminals. After each episode I wanted to go tell my friends and family about this insane, unjust, and true story.

How to help your partner through tough times

In life, you face a lot of struggle. You might grieve a lost loved one, lose a job, or face a dispute with a friend. Fortunately, you usually have people in your life you can lean on including your partner. Tragedy affects everyone differently so if this is the first time you’re helping your partner through something, you might not know the best way to comfort them.

 

Let Them Know You’re There

There can be a lot of thoughts rushing through their head at this time, they may feel that expressing their feelings are a burden for you or they might be so consumed that they haven’t thought of you to lean on. So you let them know you’re there for them offering support in any way they want or need. You’re ready for when they want to talk. You’re a shoulder and open ear.

 

Read the Room

Some people want to talk out their issues, others prefer to silently work through things on their own. You may think how you’d react during this hard time and may think you know what’s best for your partner. But they may deal with their grief in a different way then you do. Keep an open mind to this and try to not take it personally if they are keep their emotions close to their chest. Don’t project your own ideals onto them and don’t push them for what they’re not ready for.

 

Validate their Feelings

Writing things down on paper or talking out your concerns is a good healing process for the soul. Sometimes you just need to vent or cry or scream – you just want to be heard. So validate your partner’s feelings. There doesn’t always need to be a solution or plan of action. Be a soundboard as they navigate through this new territory.

 

Know it’s always an ongoing process after losing a loved one.

Losing a loved one will hit you in new and unsuspecting ways. A tv show, a street sign, a song could all bring memories rushing back even after time has passed. The loss will still ache whether it’s years or months. Anniversaries and special holidays will always be tender for your partner. There is no start and end to this healing process, it will ease both of your minds to accept this. Just because there are tears today does not mean there will be tears tomorrow, so don’t worry or judge when you’re having a hard day. You will always remember them because they are always with you.

 

Single Parent Dating – Questions Answered Part 2

Welcome back to the second and final installment of answering your single parent dating questions! I’d like to thank Dating Dad and Define Relationship so much for being a part of this and helping out fellow single parent daters!

 

What’s the best way to introduce your children to your SO? (from Single Mom Strong Traveler)

 

DD: For this one I’d definitely spend some time building up to it. The kids need to know that this person is serious, and that they make you happy. If you’re happy then they are more likely to be too, so positive association is key. I plan on doing this in a neutral place so there’s no sense of home or space invasion; it’s corny, but something like a funfair would be perfect. Lots to distract and occupy, and without any need to force conversation for very long. Wherever it was done, it would need to be treated very carefully and with the kids at the heart of it all. Softly, softly would be the order of the day, with not too much overt smushy stuff between the two of you in order to reinforce that the new SO is never going to come between parents and kids.

 

DR: For the first meet I invited him round to my house and both kids were there. I had told them he was a good friend and we saw each other a lot. I let them ask me questions after they had met him and I answered them honestly.

 

Would you be okay with your SO getting involved in parenting discussions with ex and yourself?  (from Single Parent Network )


DD: Ooh, now this is a tough one. It’s tough to say for sure, but ultimately yes, as they are going to be (to a greater or lesser extent) co-parenting the kids 50% of the time so shouldn’t feel like a tacked on extra. They might or might not have as much experience of parenting as I do, but they will have their own methods and ideas which will need to be part of the whole discussion and approach as, in my opinion, the key to parenting is consistency. If they’re getting one thing from one parent and something totally different from a step-parent then only trouble can come of it.

To make it more personal regarding my own situation, this is very tricky for me as not only is my ex-wife’s boyfriend the person she had an affair with (thus ending the marriage), but he is also 16 years her junior, making him only 7 years older than my eldest daughter. I appreciate that I have a natural aversion to him, but in my opinion not only is he not a good role model for them but, at 21 years old, there is no way on earth he is capable of or has the life experience to help raise them when he is barely out of his teens himself. Whilst I would expect my new SO to be able to engage with my ex, and while I would ultimately like to be on professional parenting terms with any new (grown-up) partner she meets, I just can’t ever see myself having any form of parenting discussion with her current boyfriend.

 

DR: Absolutely not. Ever.

I would let him sort his own kids out with the mother of his children. I would not get involved. I would keep my nose out as it is up to them two. My philosophy is that too much input would confuse everything and could end up in drama if I disagreed with what she said and vice versa.