Saturday, May 9, 2009

On Child Support and Domestic Violence

Bloggers must always be cognizant of the possibility that anyone can access what they post. Children, family, current and future employers, significant others etc., can all someday read what we have written. With this in mind, I choose to continue to post real events and their very real consequences. Most people tell stories from the beginning. You, dear reader, have the good luck to stumble upon what hopefully be the end of this particular period in my life.

Today I received an order of child support. The occasion was marked with the usual fear, anger, and uncertainty that I have grown familiar with. There was the calm before the storm: The smiles and knowing whispers with the advisor. The careful controlled and concentrated effort at ignoring my presence. And then, down came the rain... The mask slipped, the facade crumbled, and security was called to escort the obligee out of the building.

My five year order of protection grants me two things - An underwhelming sense of protection and loads of unwelcome advice from others. My personal fave: "If someone wants to get to you, ain't no piece of paper will stop them." Thanks for that. Child support and protection orders are not infallible. Aside from the obvious reasons for obtaining such orders, most people fail to recognize accountability as motivating factor. Personally, it was what led me to today's hearing.

No longer will I have to beg plead and chase down money for my child. I may never see a dime, but the state I reside in holds him responsible in ways I cannot. I may end up being physically harmed, but the list of suspects is narrowed considerably. God willing, I will be able to someday look at my daughter and tell her: First, that I wanted provide a two-parent home. Second, leaving was the only way to obtain safety and peace of mind so that I could parent her. Third, that I made every effort to foster a relationship between her and her father in a safe environment. Fourth, that I obtained the financial support that is rightfully hers.
And last, that I did my best.

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