Posts Tagged ‘Family’

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Collaborative family law bring an alternative solution for families having a dispute that do not want to go through the expensive court system to resolve there problems. In collaborative family law, a couple will sort out the problem face to face with their lawyer. Collaborative family law is mainly used in divorces and matters regarding children and maintenance.

For collaborative family law to work it is important that the couple involved act in an honest and open manner. One of the most beneficial factors of collaborative family law is that you do not have to rely on a result which has been made by a third party, such as a judge. This means that the couple will remain in control and usually the outcome will satisfy both parties.

In collaborative family legislation, lawyers will advise both parties and work together in a bid to try and get the couple to agree to a result. Anything that is discussed within the collaborative law proceeding is private and cannot be used in court should proceedings progress any further.

The collaborative family law process begins with each party having a one on one discussion with their lawyer to explain what they would like to get out of the process. The lawyers will then meet and discuss what they have talked about with their respective clients. From here the couple and their lawyers will meet and they will have to sign an agreement which explains that both parties want the issue to be settled out of court. They will then go on to discuss what they want to work out in further meetings. If the dispute is about financial matters, these will usually be discussed at the end of the first meeting.

Following meetings will aim to get to the best result which both parties are happy with. The lawyers may decide to get outside help in order to achieve a result, for example from a councilor so they can have a more amicable relationship.

In the last meeting, all the information from the preceeding meetings will be bought together and the lawyers will explain to the couple how to make the agreements they have formed legally binding.

The process usually takes about six months to complete. This will vary from couple to couple depending on their circumstances. This is considerably less time then would be spent if the couple decided to go through the courts.

The main advantages of using this law are that the couple will remain in control of the process. The children’s needs will be put before all others so it can often lead to a better result for the children. The other main aim of the process is that it remains amicable so that the couple can continue to have a relationship after the process. Collaborative family legislation can also work out a lot cheaper than going through the courts.

Collaborative family law cannot be used in cases of drug abuse or violence. The overall costs of collaborative family law vary but average proceedings should cost no more than around 15,000 for both parties.

I am a legal writer covering advice on topics of law including collaborative family law, for further text and similar works visit family law or contact a solicitor today.

For more legal advice and information, and for free legal resources I suggest you visit

While watching the inauguration of President Barack Obama, I experienced such intense emotion of joy for men and women who were able to overcome great odds. I couldn’t help taking a trip down memory lane. I come from a country with a history of deep seated prejudice. I wish I could say that all of that has changed, but I’m afraid there is still a long road ahead of us.

Even in America people still need to check their prejudice. With the winds of change so obviously blowing on this particularly Tuesday morning, their are still an undercurrent of prejudice and the one I intend to put the spotlight on is Weight Prejudice.

I found myself in a spot about 10 years ago where I opened my heart, maybe for the first time, to some serious investigation. I needed some real change, and I came face to face with the fact that prejudice and love can not co-exist in one heart. One will always push out the other.

In my case, it was time for love to get the upper hand. It wasn’t easy, more like humbling and painful. To have to look at yourself, your beliefs, the things you held dear for many years, the people you’ve trusted, and the part you’ve played in severe prejudice and oppression of a people group, can be earth shattering. I cried for a long time, seriously, it took years. I questioned my own way of thinking. I didn’t trust my own decisions any more, and I was suspicious of all authority for very long.

I was mortified at what I found: Ugliness and prejudice against people that I was either not consciously aware of, or that I simply chose not to see when I was younger probably because it was easier than going against the current. Some of the things I grew up with was obviously wrong, and it made it easier for me to turn from those and vow to raise my children differently. However, some types of prejudice hid in the small corners of my heart.

One of these, that influenced my life greatly, was weigth prejudice or discrimination against overweight people. I never thought this was true for me, in fact very few people are aware of this in themselves. Now, I can already see some eyebrows being raised: How dare I lay this kind of “insignificant prejudice” alongside deep ingrained racism and prejudice against women. I am not trying to compare one with the other, I am simply trying to make you aware of another type of prejudice that have caused people to suffer and others to fall into dangerous eating disorders, yes, even loose their lives.

By now you must have heard, or worse experienced, that certain employers, jobs and careers make no room for someone who is overweight. Research has shown that teachers and other adults are more caring and attentive to kids that are good looking and skinny than to their peers who are not so “lucky”. I definitely experienced this as a kid. The sad part: I wasn’t overweight as a child. I just had an average build with freckles and a clumsy demeanor. I studied hard and was polite, but I was basically ignored and brushed off.

Of course I do not endorse overeating or binging. I am very aware of the dangers of obesity, and more so in children. I am all for changing your lifestyle and that of your children, giving them a healthy and safe future. What I’m against is the way we treat overweight people.

See, as with any other prejudice, our children are watching and learning. So, people with weight problems have a weakness, an obvious weakness, but so does everybody else, just not as obvious to the naked eye. Check yourself next time you see someone who is overweight. What are you thinking? Do you think of them as lazy or without self control? There are other addictions and habits that one can judge even more severely, but unlike food addiction, we wouldn’t know about it just by looking at peopole.

So let’s leave the judging up to God and reach out to overweight people with the love and respect they need to overcome their weaknesses.

IMPORTANT: If we give our children the message that we dislike overweight people, even in a subtle way, we can sow a seed of fear in their hearts: Fear of ever becoming overweight, and fear of disappointing us. The strange thing is, it is usually people who have a fear of gaining weight and know that they secretly have a struggle with food that can have the most prejudice in this area.

I dealt with exactly this while abusing diet pills in my early twenties. I was very skinny and looked down on people who wasn’t, yet all the while I was just hiding a big secret: I was so afraid of gaining weight. I also talked to women in my support groups that were overweight, and some of them admit that they couldn’t stand other overweight people.

Most prejudice is rooted in fear. Maybe you too have to deal with your fear. Once you start to deal with this hidden part in your heart you can start a new life of freedom. There are deeper relationships with God, yourself and others waiting for you on the other side of this fear and prejudice. Don’t be afraid to look, it’s worth it! Have a look at my program for women struggling with eating disorders such as overeating. Prejudice is one of many things this course deals with. Today can be you first step out of the nightmare of food addiction and the prejudice that might accompany it.

If you want to learn more about How to Stop Binge Eating by yourself then you might want to have a look at my program called “Women Struggling with Food”. This Online Program for women who struggle with food related issues, such as bulimia, compulsive overeating, and binge eating disordercan teach you how to stop binge eating or stop bulimia for good.

Most likely you are one of those family reunion aficionados if you are reading this. You probably have some great memories of reunions that you have attended. However, what would you do if you were asked to plan family reunion functions?

Where would you begin? When would you start to get things rolling? Would you want to hire someone to help you plan it?

Here are some great suggestions to help you plan family reunion fun:

1. Make sure to ask for help early in the planning stages. It is a good idea to create a committee. Depending on how many people you are planning on attending, there should be one committee member per 25 people that plan on attending.

2. Delegate, delegate, delegate. If you are the one called to do all the planning, then you should make sure that everyone in your committee has a job. You should end up only being the one to delegate. You job is to stay organized and follow up with your committee members to make sure they are getting their job done right. And, if they need any help.

3. Proper communication. To ensure that your reunion is well-attended you will want to make sure that it is properly advertised. Invitations are a good thing to send out. Or with the advent of email, you can send out your invitations cost-free. It is also a good idea to send out notifications early enough so that your family can make travel arrangements if needed.

4. Plenty of Time. Not only do you want plenty of time to plan family reunion get-togethers, you will also want sufficient time for making everyone aware of a date. You don’t necessarily need to send out all of the details at that point in time, they can come later. As a rule of thumb, it is good to give your family members at least a year to work around the date of the reunion.

To make sure that you are able to complete tasks, or those who were delegated tasks to complete them, you should have a schedule to work around. It is a good idea to use an action list and planning tools.

For example, if you plan on having your reunion at a specific location, you will need to know who will be making the calls and who will follow up. As long as you are organized, to plan family reunion gatherings doesn’t have to be all that difficult.

Make sure to visit my blog Family Reunion Ideas for helpful tips and advice on Planning a Family Reunion, Family Reunion Games and much more!

How time flies sometimes.  It has now been two years since the naked body of Lindsay Ann Hawker was found in a bathtub on the balcony of Tatsuyo Ichihashi, with the suspect managing to run barefoot past nine police officers who went to his apartment, and then evading them on foot.  This story made headlines back in the UK straight away but it was only after foreign media became heavily involved that this story started to get mentioned by the Japanese media.  Interestingly, the Japanese Wikipedia article on Hawker still does not include Ichihashi’s by name, referring to only “the suspect”.

I predicted then that there was very little chance of the Japanese police catching this guy, and so it has proved until now.  In the past ten days the police chief in the case has been replaced for reasons not made public.  Coincidence or not, this change in staff came just days after he gave an interview with the BBC’s Inside Out program.  One wonders if people above him deemed his defense of the police officers at the time was seen as inadequate in some way.  He was quoted as saying, “”At the stage that the investigators went to Tatsuya Ichihashi’s apartment it was still not clear that he was involved in this incident and it was not clear that she (Lindsay) was already murdered.”  That does make you wonder then why nine armed officers were dispatched to his apartment, if they were just making an enquiry into a missing person’s report.

Hawker’s family are back in Japan once again as we approach the March 27th anniversary of her death, and are asking the police to increase their efforts to find Ichihashi.  The police’s attempts to show they are working on this case are, at best, laughable.  Previously they have made posters showing what Ichihashi might look like if he dressed up as a woman.  The most recent thing is now a cardboard cutout of Ichihashi to be placed in train stations around Tokyo which, if a button is pressed, will produce a grainy rendition of his voice.  The police have offered a reward for Ichihashi’s capture, but Y1m ($ 10,000) does seem a pretty paltry amount.

The reaction of people has been something to behold too.  Police have stated that they have visited many restaurants and adult entertainment facilities (no sniggering at the back) and inquired about him.  At one such bar, the owner told police, “I heard rumors that he is staying at (a gay bar in) Shinjuku Ward.”  That is some information, but if the police hadn’t gone there then for all intents and purposes this guy would have not come forward.  He would have just kept the rumours of sightings and whereabouts to himself.

And now, just as the Hawker family return to Tokyo to search for Ichihashi, a journalist has revealed to the Telegraph newspaper that Ichihashi’s father may have killed himself.  The story states that getting information on whether this is true or not is difficult, although the media seem to have no problem reporting names when it is any other person who has killed themself.  What gets you thinking in this story is that the suspected suicide was back in September, yet has been kept quiet until Hawker’s family are back in Japan.  A sceptic might consider that the story was kept quiet until a time when it may be useful to provide some sympathy for the family of the suspect, who have been forced to undergo extreme hardship after their son has been made a suspect in a murder enquiry.  Saying that though, I think his arrest warrant is still only for abandoning a body, as obviously he might not have killed the girl on his balcony in his bathtub filled with sand.

I’d like to report an update and possibly an arrest very soon, but I think it will probably be another year before this story takes up any more column inches in Japan.

Read more at Big in Japan:

Thanks to Mary Moody for her website, Darlie Routier Fact & Fiction:

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Justice For Devon and Damon Routier

Article from World Psychiatry:

“Spouse revenge filicide is difficult to prevent, because there is usually little warning. This behavior most often occurs after learning of spousal infidelity or in the course of child custody disputes.”

Psychiatry MMC

Altruistic filicide:
The parent kills the child because it is perceived to be in the best interest of the child.

*Acts associated with parental suicidal ideation—The parent may believe that the world is too cruel to leave the child behind after his or her death.

*Acts meant to relieve the suffering of the child—The child has a disability, either real or imagined, that the parent finds intolerable.

Acutely psychotic filicide
The parent, responding to psychosis, kills the child with no other rational motive. This category may also include incidents that occur secondary to automatisms related to seizures or activities taking place in a post-ictal state.

Unwanted child filicide
The parent kills the child, who is regarded as a hindrance. This category also includes parents who benefit from the death of the child in some way (e.g., inheriting insurance money, marrying a partner who does not want step-children).

Accidental filicide
The parent unintentionally kills the child as a result of abuse. This category includes the rarely occurring Munchausen syndrome by proxy.

Spouse revenge filicide
The parent kills the child as a means of exacting revenge upon the spouse, perhaps secondary to infidelity or abandonment.