So, I am not in jail. Nine individuals came to support me at my hearing, and at least seven others were thinking of me during my hearing. What happened at the hearing?
I made the decision just minutes before the hearing to accept the help of an attorney who a friend connected to me. At the hearing, the attorney asked for much of what I had been asking for over eight years (apparently this Judge has been with us for three years)… and it was granted.
Perspective #1. I threw in the towel. I raised the white flag. I surrendered. I am a loser.
Perspective #2. In spite of being a beautiful, intelligent and amazing woman, I was never going to heard because those who were supposed to be hearing me as I speak are unable to hear what I have to say, because of who I am.
Note #1. Me calling myself beautiful, intelligent and amazing is not narcisstic… it is me giving my self positive cognition after being told for over 20 years that I am funny looking, unintelligent, and selfish by abusers.
Note #2. About people not able to hear me. Here is another individual: This individual rates all of my Pages with a 1 star, with the comment “another Felicia Chew page”. At one point, we were friends. But something flipped this individual to beginning this practice of harassment. In an attempt to end the cycle, I sent a private message to the individual. No response. Just continued 1 star ratings with the same comment “another Felicia Chew page.” I am unable to delete the comments, so I decided to use the Report feature in Facebook (I know, many of ya’ll hate that feature). I decided to block the individual two days ago.
Question #1. Why did I wait so long to block the individual?
Question #2. Why did the individual “flip”?
Question #3. Could I have done more to get these individuals to hear me?
Question #4. Why didn’t I have an attorney?
Answer #1. Empathy. My greatest strength, my greatest weakness.
Answer #2. Unknown, as the individual has not communicated with me. Or, if they did, I blocked it as a result of my PTSD, and not being ready to hear the message at the time.
Answer #3. No. At least not at the time. *I* could not do more. Somebody else might gave been able to do something, but *I* could not do more.
Answer #4. I did… many years ago. However, due to
a. getting some *really* bad advice from an attorney at SALA (resulted in the Judge being disgusted with me and believing that I was a harlot and terrible person, who needed an Order that read: “No men in (my) bedroom”);
b. followed by having a non-trauma informed attorney who was willing to give my most “prized possession” to an individual who had destroyed many of my “prized possessions”;
c. to an attorney who was afraid and unable to admit they were afraid and then proceeded to him on my then boyfriend…;
d. and then to not being able to afford an attorney because there are *so* many situations like mine (#TheSameButDifferent) that there just are not enough attorneys for everyone…
…I had to end my attorney-client relationships, and I was unable to secure a new attorney due to lack of funds.
Re Answer #4 … I have learned that some folks really cannot hear because they have implicit biases and/or blocks. These may be due to a variety of reasons, including having experienced ACEs (adverse childhood experiences), undiagnosed mental health challenges, and having unresolved trauma (this is the reason for #TranscendTucson http://www.feliciachew.com/transcendtucson and http://www.facebook.com/86elevatetucson).
Re. Answer #3 … it kills me. It kills me inside. I feel useless. Helpless. Some folks would say I am playing the victim card. Some folks would say I relapsed into the pit of being a victim. Some folks would say I retreated into Gethsemane. Some folks would say I am the turtle retreating into safety (Gethsemane). Relapsed into the pit of being a victim (addicted to being a victim). Manipulative (playing the victim card).
My opposition in Court call me manipulative. They asked for $50/day sanctions to force me to comply with an Order.
Some of my supporters see the fact that I have an attorney now as a gift from God. (Side story: I once believed *strongly* in God, and I was a worship leader, prayer leader, bible study leader, small group leader, youth leader, 5-day Club teacher, and a teacher in a Catholic school…. but after being a part of a group that believed that women should not speak in discussion groups, and that excessive discipline to the point of children being “disciplined” to the point of being unable to walk, and being terrified… I left the church).
Re. Answer #2 … it is frustrating and disappointing. How can a problem be resolved when the individual is unwilling to speak with me? Again, maybe the individual tried, and I did not hear because of my trauma (an explanation, not an excuse). To that end, I have formed the team Transcend Tucson with the help of my mentor (who is super smart), and now we have a movement to address the need for change in Courts, including written policy to guide Courts, attorneys, and workers in delivering justice and breaking the cycle of trauma in parents and kids.
Re. Answer #1. Choose Humanity. Empathy. Wisdom. I am told that these concepts are too broad. I think they need to be broad… broad enough to encompass #EachOfUs and #AllOfUs, not just some of us.
2. “Family first”
3. Transcend Tucson.
#WeGotThis #ExplanationsNotExcuses #StopTheBlame #StopTheShame #OurChildrenAreWatching
Thank you again to everyone who has been supporting me in my journey, for loving me, praying for me, caring for me… and even hating me. Thank you for believing in me.
Felicia Chew Community Projects (Tucson, AZ) 520.909.3888 / firstname.lastname@example.org