"This life therefore, is not godliness but the process of becoming godly, not health but getting well, not being but becoming, not rest but exercise. We are not now what we shall be, but we are on the way. The process is not yet finished, but it is actively going on. This is not the goal, but it is the right road. At present, everything does not gleam and sparkle, but everything is being cleansed." --Martin Luther

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Letter to the editor

Unfortunately, papers have word limits in their letters to the editor.  Here's the longer version.

I am sure you could imagine my surprise the other day as I pulled my mail out of the box to see a picture of my six year old son on a political campaign.  Interesting, no one had contacted me about using my son’s imagine.  I didn’t give my permission for that.  (And no, this was not a random crowd shot-this was just a political candidate and my son, close range)
It was increasingly ironic to me that he was used as propaganda for increased public school funding, specifically all day, everyday, funded kindergarten.  Ironic because he doesn’t go to a public school, we home school.  I guess maybe the teacher’s union aka MN DFL is now in favor of school choice?  Perhaps it would be a tad bit different if I supported the ideals that my son is purported to endorse by his imagine.  But I don’t.  I am paying for public school education which he doesn't attend, and I pay for all the materials he needs for his education at home as well.  That average of $2500 a year the ad said they save an average family, doesn’t get saved here.
The picture in question was taken as a personal picture.  Mary Sawatsky thought it was neat that I had nine children.  During a local parade she saw us and asked to take a picture with our number seven as she herself was a number seven of nine.  I didn’t think too much of it.  There was never any mention that the picture was for anything other than herself.  Of course, she never asked to put it on her personal Facebook page either, but I didn’t think anything of it when I first saw it; it was just Mary’s page, not Mary Sawatzy for State Rep’s page.
Of course the flyer in question came from ProgressForMN.com, and was prepared and paid for  by  the MN DFL party, so she didn’t “endorse it”.   I know she didn’t pay for the literature, she told me in an email that she hadn’t even seen it.  So it would seem that the DFL went to her personal page, plucked a random photo (which I have since asked her to take down) and used it in their ad.  Couldn’t agree more with John Burns: “(However,) it is naive not to understand that there is a winking relationship between the candidates, their political parties, and various outside groups who pay for the advertising.”
Truthfully though, this isn’t a DFL or Republican or political issue even.  I would just be as upset  if any ANYONE used my minor children in an advertising campaign  without my permission.
I suppose you can give me some bull about that anything on Facebook is public.  But that is what it is-bull.  Yes you can see it, but you still can’t use it for your own exploitative purposes without permission.  There is plenty of legal precedence for that (Chang vs. Virgin Mobile).
This is a matter of privacy, the right of people not to have their (or their children’s) likeness used in an ad without permission.  Even if Mrs. Sawatzky had given away her rights as the photographer of the photo, she can not give away my son’s rights.  There are three elements that must be established in a legal claim for unlawful use of name or likeness:
  1. use of protected attribute (in this case, my son’s identity)
  2. for an exploitative purpose (political gain)
  3. no consent (I did not give)
No parent wants to see their child used as a tool for propaganda, especially something they don’t believe in or support.  Maybe I will have to look closer into my options.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

A little story that a friend told her son to explain to him Reactive Attachment Disorder (which he has).
I think it is helpful for anyone who wants to try to get what it is in pretty simple terms. Thanks Kim!

Once upon a time there was a little boy, and he was with his friends and family ice skating on a lake. There were snacks and loads of kids and music and fun. The boy was having a blast. Unfortunately, the adults weren't paying enough attention to the little boy, they accidentally didn't keep him safe, and he fell through the ice! He managed to skibble up out of the water fighting hard and using all his strength. He crawled across the ice to land and sat waiting for his family to notice he was hurt and cold, but, because of the music and the cupcakes and the talking and fun, they didn't notice. He waited and waited, and still nothing. As time went on, he got more and more angry, why did they not notice he was gone!? Why? He was cold and hurt and hungry, but nobody came. Finally after what seemed forever, some fire fighters found him and tried to save him. They came out and told him not to be afraid, that they cared for him and were only trying to help. They put some safety gear on him and tried to get him to come back across the ice to safety, but all the boy could see was that they were trying to drag him back to the hole. No matter what words they used to explain that they were not bringing him to the hole, he could not convince his body to believe him. They harder they pulled, the more angry he became! Bringing him to safety became a much bigger problem, because his fears and natural reflexes got in the way. It was made harder still, because the firefighters couldn't understand why the boy would not go to the safe side of the lake!

This story is like yours, isn't it. It's like that except for you it's not a hole in ice, the thing that makes you pull away is love and affection. This is not your fault. When you were very small, the adults forgot to keep you safe. They had loads of reasons for making this mistake, and none of the were your fault. But because of that, you are afraid that going near love again will hurt you. We, your family and therapists are the firefighters in the story. We are trying to help you and love you and get you to the safe side of the lake. We will keep trying to calm your mind and body and make you understand that we are not going to harm you.

---RAD can happen for lots of different reasons and it shows up in lots of different ways.  The trauma didn't have to be major-it can be as simple as malnutrition because the child's family just couldn't feed them.  Or an illness, or of course, neglect and abuse.  RAD can be treated, but it is hard, hard work and many parents feel isolated and alone because of the way it often manifests itself (manipulative behavior, the child being on their best for others and then acting out for their "safe people" aka parents, indiscriminate affection to name just a few).   Judgement, "helpful" suggestions, shame, guilt, loneliness, even despair.  If you are struggling, please know that you are NOT ALONE in this journey.  It is tough.  Keep swimming!!  For online support, check out:
Beyond Trauma and Attachment
Facebook- https://www.facebook.com/beyondtraumaandattachment
Closed facebook groups also available for moms, dads and siblings. 

Saturday, December 28, 2013


We have had some moms cancel and have room for you to join us! I know you have been thinking about it, now is the time to take a leap of faith. If you are afraid to fly, we may have someone in your area to make the trip with you either by plane or car. If you can't imagine what will happen to your family while you are gone, our alumni can tell you what worked or didn't for their families. If you are terrified to travel across the country or to another country to meet a 100+ women you only met online, I promise we were terrified, too. If you worry your family isn't as traumatized as the other families are, we will still support you and make you laugh until you cry. Money? I have some cheap beds available. It's just a weekend.
 ~ Rachel, Executive Director, Beyond Trauma and Attachment


Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Little Man

He said I couldn't put it on Facebook, so I will put it on the blog!! 

He wanted his hair cut like dad's.  I was a little leary of going that short...but dad did it anyway!  He kept teasing Myron with different styles.  Myron wasn't too impressed with this mohawk.

Here is the finished product. 

My two amigos!  Myron is very worried about giving me a kiss each morning since dad is gone :)

Wednesday, July 17, 2013


 We are moms from all over the USA and Canada who are raising children who have experienced early childhood trauma and attachment resistance. Our children have come to us through foster care, domestic adoption, international adoption, blended families and birth. We provide support, rejuvenation, and education through online groups, our website, and a yearly retreat in Orlando, FL.

Each year BeTA holds an auction to raise money for our yearly retreat, this money provides scholarships to help defray the cost of the retreat for moms all over the country and Canada.

Get on over there and bid, bid, bid!!  There is still plenty of time to bid-auction closes July 27.  You can put in a "proxy" maximum bid so you don't have to keep checking it-you will get an email if you are out bid.
AND...with any additional donation of $5.00 or more added on to your final payment or made using the "Donate Now" button, you will receive a postcard sized print of "We are all Wonder Women!" artwork.

In the totally strange event that you don't see anything you'd like, we will gladly accept your tax deductible donation!  Just click the "DONATE MONEY" tab on the left hand side of the screen.
We are already at 3/4 of our goal!!  We'd love to blow that right out of the sky and help MORE MOMS connect, rejuvenate, recuperate and be encouraged in the journey of motherhood-Beyond Trauma and Attachement!

To learn more about trauma and attachment please visit our website at www.momsfindhealing.com.

Thank-you for supporting BeTA (Beyond Trauma and Attachment)!