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Archive for August, 2011

In some homes across America there will always be that one family member, who is often times, the most spoiled or the most neglected. This member will always be the most loyal regardless of how they are treated. They ask very little of the family beyond being fed and watered once they receive their yearly or bi-yearly shots, and will many times give up their own life if called on, for the family. The return of the family to the home is always the most exciting part of the day, for them. They worship, usually one member of the family more, unless we are fortunate enough to find that special one, who chooses more than one family member to tag behind.

Some families can love this member to its grave and make sure they know they are special and others can leave them outdoors in the elements totally neglected or in a house where they bring shame on themselves, since they are forgotten, and have no place to relieve themselves except in the filth of the home.

If there is any other place that the extremes of humanity are shown,in such huge numbers in America, between good and bad, than with this family member, I’m not aware of where that exists. The cruelty against them can be so atrocious that it often will raise the ire of the public in a way that no others can. Other times people will be quick to call people,who show their love to this family member as silly or ridiculous,because of the affection they shower on them.

I am talking about the family dog,of course, but cats can receive the same treatment. Cats are less loyal,however, and will often choose two other families in the neighborhood to adopt who will feed them, incase their original family fails their expectations. Unless of course, we keep the cat indoors, at all times, and then they are more than content to run our households.A spoiled dog can also run a home, until or unless, we let them know that there is an alpha male or female living in the home and then they are more than glad to take orders and remain in their order of the wolf pack mentality, that still goes back in their instincts for years and years, before the family dog became domesticated.

It has been awhile since I have updated you on our faithful old companion, so I will update you now. Just to refresh everyone, in March of 2010, we went on a vacation and left him in the Veterinary kennel, where he has always stayed while we have been out-of-town in the past. They do an excellent job, and in the past he has always resigned himself to staying with them.

Whatever the reason, perhaps because we took vacation earlier in the year than usual and threw off his routine or because he was 13 years of age and suffering a little dementia, due to being older, no one knows why for sure. He refused to eat and suffered a nervous break down with our being gone.

We got back home just in the nick of time, to rescue him from his own self-imposed-victimzation. It was touch and go for a while but he made a full and quick recovery.He is a toy cocker spaniel and was purchased to be a companion for me, while I traveled. As is typical, many times,life is what happens while we are busy making plans and my health altered the traveling dog plans.

Despite that though, he has settled in to be both a good traveler when my husband and I take him with us as well as a super house dog. We have not been able to leave home without him for more than a couple of hours since his break down. As a result we have spent trips or vacations in some pretty seedy motel rooms when we travel East.The farther West we go, dogs are accepted as a member of the family, and people look at us strange if we even doubt if they will take dogs in some of the most upscale suites and penthouses.

The fact that our youngest daughter lives in Portland, Oregon, and we plan our longest vacations around seeing her or meeting her elsewhere on the Coast, it has not been too bad of a hinderance to have him with us.We worry of course,especially this year when we met our daughter in Reno and went on to the California Coast and wine Country, if the trip will be too hard on him.

He ended up making the trip better than my husband and I, and came back just as perky as ever. He fits in well with us as he has a little arthritis and is content to take a nap in his chair:)I am pleased to say that he is going on to his 15th year of life and still not suffering old age, beyond his ability to still enjoy life. So that is the long and short of the update of our other family member.

I hope you take out time, even if it is only a few minutes, as most dogs will understand that our time is sometimes limited, to appreciate and praise your other family member, today. Any of us who do own dogs and are able to give them the proper care do know and understand that the little critters return love on a magnanimous level, when we are able to give love.

If you can no longer care for your pet due to financial difficulties or health, then please make certain that you place them with someone who can. I cannot urge enough, the need to give food,water and love to these family members, who ask for so little and give back the best in all of us and more. Have them spayed and neutered and their shots kept updated, and if you cannot afford to, then contact your local humane or animal shelter, as many times they will be able to do it for you, for little or no cost.

Sorry about the public health message, but animal over-population to the point of feral dogs running wild in major cities,as well as, upsetting the balance of nature in rural areas is becoming a problem and will become more than just a nuisance, if we don’t make certain our beloved family members are treated in the way we need to accept is a must, for the animal population, and our Human children’s future safety.

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How many times do we hear parents say,”They may look-alike but none of them act the same,”in families, and yet we try to force identical behavior on all of the children. I understand the necessity to set rules and boundaries in our homes,in order to maintain equality for all the members of the family. I do not dispute the need to do so.

What I am talking about is how too many times we try to pin point each child into following the example of the child, that parents often pick,out of the family. More times than not it will be the oldest son or daughter of the home. There is even the philosophy or belief that exist, “raise the first child right and all the rest will follow.” Other times if parents find the oldest un-cooperative then they will pick the most submissive and hold her or him up as their favorite child or the example of the family, that the rest of the children need to follow.

We always do better as parents if we set the example that the children are to follow, instead of putting perfection on another child in the household. Too often the behavior of the child, is anything but perfection, but in a parents’ need to think they are raising the perfect child, they often blame that child more harshly, when they do prove that they are just a normal child and do and will make mistakes like all the rest of the children.

Other times parents are so intent in believing that this child is perfect that they will never make them take responsibility for their own mistakes or failures. In short parents will go into denial and refuse to believe anyone, who does not agree with their own estimation of their child. This will sometimes even include law enforcement, when they show up, and still these parents will deny this child made a mistake. It will always be the fault of another instead.

I think most people do understand the damage that parents do when they set their children against each other to compete for their approval or love, but sadly, it still does not stop that form of parenting ,in some cases. To call ourselves good parents when we will not tolerate anything beyond what we establish as “black and white”, reality, is an exaggeration of the word, “good.”

Just as we parents acknowledge, our children are all different, they will also excel in different areas of their life. The differences in maturity also tell us the need to raise our children as the individual they are. To simply pick out a child and expect the rest to follow the same behavior will only backfire and disappoint both them as well as ourselves. It is when we try to force a child into an image, we conceive, that we will have children who will rebel and often become the so-called,”losers”, that the parents have labeled them to be.

It can become very destructive to the families’ unity, when the child who disagrees with the parents has higher standards and becomes the real success of the family, instead, and they were not the “chosen one.”Sadly, there will always be families who would rather be right than to have a child of theirs’ prove their own judgment to be wrong, regardless how successful of a person, that child becomes. In cases where the entire family follows the lead of the parent, the child who feels differently in their belief system from the rest, will many times be branded by the siblings, especially when jealousy plays a role, no differently from the way the parents will brand the child,as well.

Just as adults have different ideas and opinions as well as different taste and some mature while others never do, the same is true of our children. If one of our children excels at sports and the other as a painter or writer, too many times fathers especially, will treat the son who enjoys something different from he did, as a child in the home who he simply shares the home with. Other times men will argue “they are girls. What do I know about shopping or volley ball?”

Mothers on the other hand, sometimes, will claim that they are just too nervous to watch sports while indulging the son or daughter who will go shopping with her. Other times it is the mothers who would not miss one of their child’s sports activities but will fail to show up at another child’s piano recital or the reverse. Children need equal time and attention from their parents and we cannot simply substitute our time by replacing it with an older sibling. If they fail to become a “mini Me” and instead find interests of their own, we need to keep our own disappointment out of it, and instead support them.

When we become lost in our own lives,children will misbehave, if they find that is the only way they can get our attention. Fathers cannot continuously expect mothers to cover for them in their child’s activities or the reverse, and not expect that at some point their child or children will act out their disappointment, as well.

To be good parents we all need to understand that our children will choose what interests them and when they do, our role is to support each child with the same amount of concern and interests that we show those who share our interests. If we cannot be enthusiastic just for the sake of it being our child, who is performing, then we need to make an attitude adjustment of our own. We need to make an effort to understand better why this holds an interest to our child. If we need to learn the game, then take time to learn it.

When we allow our own fears to enter into the lives of our children, too many times, we can let those fears stagnate the life that our child has a right to discover. Too often parents will believe that their “black and white” way of doing things is all that matters, and as long as a child steps up to that criteria, then we have been good parents. We can also apply this same theory to the kind of person we have become when it comes to accepting the differences in all of the human race.

Good parents are in truth, those parents who accept our children’s differences from ourselves as readily as we do their shared interests with us. Anyone can enjoy what we find enjoyable but it takes a good parent to acknowledge enjoyment and respect for our children’s differences, from our own.

It is always easy to raise a child who agrees with us, but the true test of our own ability, is raising the child who has a different opinion from our own, on almost everything, with the exception of morality. When we raise our children through love and support while teaching them the boundaries of respect, in return, we teach them the significance of unconditional love. They will then in return teach their children who will teach their children etc., and both the family as well as Society, will know the rewards.

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When we accept that our children will represent both the best of us as well as the worst of us, perhaps more people would learn to like themselves and accept others, before they marry, instead of unloading their own baggage on both their marriage as well as their children.

With people waiting longer to marry we have real hope of being able to accomplish doing just that.However, with the falling numbers in the educated since the 1980’s to the drive underway to prevent acceptance of both education and Science in the Right-wing,Tea Party and the Republican platform, taking place, we are seeing an outbreak of bigotry across America instead of an improvement in acceptance of our diversity that does make us the Democracy we are.

On a lighter side perhaps Mother Nature was making us wake up when the earthquake hit the home of the politicians in Washington D.C, who will refuse to allow Science to be part of the Republican platform in 2012. Was she saying if you doubt Science is real I’ll give you a taste of just what Mother Nature still holds through science, by following up with the hurricane as well? Isn’t that the same reasoning that Pat Robertson and Michele Bachmann used to speak of God’s attack on mankind and the Baptist hate group has been using to disrupt military funerals, to show God’s displeasure against gays? Religion has used bad storms and ill-health as signs of God’s displeasure against mankind since the beginning of time and perhaps both are simply normal for the scientific circumstances that exist. I guess it is only fair that we can use it both ways, shouldn’t we think?

Our attitudes are totally dependent, many times, on what we are able to accomplish in understanding ourselves and the reasons behind why we do what we do and why we react to the stimulus in life that we do. Unless we accept Science along with Religion and educate ourselves, we will never fully understand what makes up the components of mankind much less ourselves. The understanding that we reach, through ourselves, also goes towards making huge improvements in how we raise and understand the differences in our own families. Through Science we all learn what makes us tick.

How hypocritical is it that the same party and voters will be the first to embrace modern medicine and support drug companies who base their findings on Science? Are we to believe if they or their loved ones get sick they will refuse Science then as well? Can they tell any difference between atmospheric pressure or the reality that when heat is put into the earth then it must escape somewhere else? What about what goes up must come down? What about reality,is it real?

In homes where both snobbery and bigotry or the self righteous and the intolerant, are central themes, we leave behind an indelible mark for life on our children. Growing up not understanding that to segregate ourselves from others means our own lost, on our future ability to be able to work side by side, in unison, with our fellow workers,can become one of the greatest hardships parents will visit on their children. In America we live in a World of diversity. We are not always going to be able to understand our differences in culture but if we are taught to hate or to separate ourselves from others, because we have been fed hate or told that others are inferior,our children will pay the price of our own ignorance.

Once we all realize that children form cliques in junior high often over nothing more than the brand names of the clothes on their back,because they think the way everybody else in the clique thinks, and the street address of their parents,as well as, group together out of an insecurity and fear to become the individual they are meant to be, perhaps the majority of us can mature enough to accept through Science we learn the only differences that separates all human beings, is the melanin in our skin and that which determines our gender. All mankind are directly made according to their own special genetic code and otherwise there is no difference between the rich,the poor,the races or gender orientation.

The worse kind of segregation takes place in our prisons across America. If that is not an indication of just how we cheat our own families when we choose to set ourselves up as being superior to others, then I do not know what it will take, to open our eyes to the prison we place ourselves and our children in when we can only accept those who share our shade of skin color,think what we think, or live at an address provided by their parents. It should be just a little scary to all of us.

We have not yet reached the place in America,outside of the prison walls, where we do need to depend on the safety in numbers aspect,if we arm ourselves with knowledge through educating ourselves and voting wisely while using common sense in taking precaution, unless we are under attack by criminals,terrorist or our own petty jealousy that often needs companionship, as does snobbery, bigots,and hate groups need to form to keep others out. On the other hand, none of us can deny Mother Nature will always prove to all of us how much we do need to rely on our government, of “For the people by the people,” many times, in order for us all to work together when it comes to digging ourselves out of a National disaster.

The longer we remove truth by removing Science and education from our lives,and replace it with ignorance, the more likely we will reach the point that ignorance will depict how we live. We need to get out of the funk of,” I don’t care anything about politics,” because that will be the number one reason that the ignorant (often times the intolerant or self-righteous) can and will succeed in running America, and we will all be left out of what has become the greatest Democracy of the World.

(Do I need to offer anymore proof of the ignorant ruling America other than looking any further than the Tea Party and the right-wing conservative candidates who have declared and those that may run,for President in 2012, in order to prove my point?)

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If we have made responsibility the central theme in our homes, long before the adolescent years, then we can often times see what we have taught our children, come back at us during the teenage years. Responsibility does not just mean making their school work their number one pursuit nor does it mean cleaning their rooms and looking after their own personal hygiene the only thing that matters. A great part of responsiblity also entails teaching them that they need to take responsibility for their own actions and the words that come out of their own mouths.

They or we do not get to get off on being rude to us or others, because we have failed to teach them respect. They or we do not get to get off on lying or cheating on their homework, because we have made study time consistent in our homes and made it the top priority over anything else,first. Home work needs to be done where we can both watch them and help them when they need help.

If they are not asking us for help then that is a good clue they are not doing their homework. Sending them to their room so they can grab a book and pretend or switch to a web site every time they hear us in the hallway or knock on the door is not supervising homework. They or we do not go free from understanding that when we deal out discipline or punishment they will need to follow it through until they finish it because we have been consistent with our punishment.

In short then, just as all the lessons of life need to be taught to our children because we have done our job they need to take responsibility for their actions by doing their job. Do not use,”I trust my child or children” as a cop-out to get out of taking your own responsibility towards being there both as their supervisor and their guide.

The earlier children understand right from wrong and their responsibility in it, the sooner it becomes habit in their lives. Children who are not confused with morality,since they have learned to live the value of right over wrong until it has become a habit, many times, are more tuned in to the choices available to them. It takes so much more energy to lie and cheat because we are always called on to remember what it was we said in order to keep from exposing ourselves as a liar. Not to mention the guilt that often follows that all liars need to justify in order to live with the lie. Mankind was never made to lie. At the opposite end of that statement, since it is not accurate to generalize about anyone,many times, it is the parents who make the rules too strict,who have the children who behave the worse,once they find their freedom or rebel.

The chances are always better with honest children who are allowed to express themselves,because many times they are not conflicted by peer pressure or not understanding their own minds or direction. Since teenagers are no different from the rest of the population and anything is possible we need to keep in mind that they still need our direction during moments of doubt or confusion that will sometimes happen. Other times to be able to say,”My parents would kill me if I do”,offers a nice excuse for them to get out of doing what they know is wrong. No one can ever say,”My child never would.” and say it with certainty. Our chances are better with honest kids who do not have to lie in order to be able to spend time with their friends, though in a great deal of the cases.

Since self-expression as well as terminology and the way it gets expressed, is very much a part of each individual taste, be prepared to be humbled, if they do not always dress or appear to speak the same language as we do.Conformity will come soon enough,and it does us all well, to support their own desire to express who they are to themselves as well as their peers. Wanting to be different from everyone else is much better than wanting to be like everyone else,in an effort to be accepted or popular.Many times they will set the trend when they do decide to be different and if not they are showing more courage than most of us do, and that is a good thing.Creatitivity, often, brings along with it a life-time of success and contentment.

It is not the responsibility of the school, Church, grandparents or anyone else to teach our children how to take responsibility for their own behavior, it is our responsibility to teach them. The others will simply aid us or help us once we get them started in understanding that we are the parents and our children can both trust us to keep our word to them and they can rely on us to be there for them when they need us. They need to learn that our home is a safe place to return to at the end of the day when children have been children.

If we do not remember just how mean children can be to each other, then we need to take a refresher course by just listening to our children and offering the help where needed. If it is our own child who is mean and we are not handling it correctly because they are being mean to other children and even being bullies, then we need to get professional help,the earlier the better.

After all of that has been accomplished, we will have these wonderful people in our lives who are known as teenagers. They will bring home with them and their friends an enthusiasm and zest for life, at the point in our own lives, we feel our own enthusiasm is draining. They have a generosity of heart for all their fellow students, at a time, we have become too set in our ways or too complacent with the status quo. They will accept everyone because they have been taught to accept everyone and they will many times remind us that it was us who taught them the significance of doing so, at a time, we are becoming more cynical each day. They have a thirst for learning and getting involved with the world around them, at a time, we are not even keeping up with the magazine subscriptions on World affairs.

If we as parents remember that we need to start teaching our children no later than the age of 2 or 3 the significance of taking responsibility for their own actions as well as what is theirs and taking responsibility for it as well, then we will find that our teenagers have a great deal to teach us.

Many times, we had already taught them but until now, we were not always certain that they had heard. If our teenagers are not renewing our own youth while inspiring us to be more accepting of others, but instead are a consistent head ache, each day, then do them and you both a favor, do not stoop to their level and fight and argue with them but instead get them help that you both need. If we have done our job in early training,and we are maintaining a general acceptance of their right to express themselves, but there is no explanation for this sudden change in attitude, many times, this is the time that we will see mental illness and depression begin to play a role in the lives of our child or children.That can be true in poorly structured homes as well.Too often we over-look genetic factors that are often as a result of hereditary factors.

For the sake of all adolescence and teenagers, everywhere, parents need to know and understand that personalities do not just change from happy-go-lucky to quiet and withdrawn. As parents we need to make certain that there is not an under lying cause and we as parents need to be aware if our children have had a life changing altercation or attack on them, are not doing street drugs or drugs stolen from our own medicine cabinets, or taking alcohol from our own homes.

If they have not had the early training in childhood or have had early training we need to get out of denial, and understand both are sometimes the other side of being teenagers. Children many times will be the alcohol or drug suppliers from our own home or from their grandparents without anyone being wiser for it. It is also, quite possible, that they are suffering from depression and need medical help.

Do not think that teenagers will always share the truth with us or for that matter anyone else either. Many times they carry an irrational shame or fear that can only surface with the help of a professionally trained person or people. Do not wait until the school decides to send them to counseling as many times kids can be great deceivers and schools do not always see the child we see.

Many times poor behavior is shown to us, as parents, as a scream for help when our child needs help. Our teenagers can teach us many things and all we have to do is be tuned in or knowledgeable enough to know the symptoms that are out-of-place when they happen.

We can only know that when we do know and understand we are their parent and their friends are their friends. Too many parents make the mistake that teenagers are adults now so we just have to let them learn on their own. Make certain we are learning as well, from the teenager, so we can step in when needed. The success of their life may depend on it. Teenagers are for enjoying and if they are unhappy we will be as well. Stay alert,be wise, and be there, and it can be the best years of all of our lives. Not only will we all be rewarded as a family, but so will, all of Society feel the imprint we have made on our children’s lives.

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Although, I quote a great deal of clich√©’s because they do ring true, who ever came up with,”Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.” had to be one callous human being or had no reality based idea just how often verbal abuse can and does destroy relationships for life.

The greatest tragedy of all is that painful words used amongst children are often the number one cause of suicide amongst our young people. What children are doing to children with the use of derogatory words on their computers,cell phones,the school bus and the playground across America has risen to a new level of hate. That adults would stoop to the level of children when using the same words against their own children or others should sicken us all.

I’m always amazed when I hear mothers firing back words like”little Bitch” to their daughters or you “little bastard” to their sons and forgetting they are supposed to be the adult. Calling our daughters and sons names when it is our job to eliminate the name calling is a tragedy in more ways than one.

Even in the best of situations (if we can call it that) name calling is the one thing that women or children will never forget.When parents call their daughters little whore or slut or equally disturbing words there is never any taking the words back. The more childish we behave as adults with the name calling the more we are destroying the ability for a loved one to like us and the more damage we are doing to Society as a whole. Too often these words are being learned from parents and passed on to children.

Just as adults when the men we love or care about or our family members label us with name calling or claim we are worthless, it hurts, even when we are older. When abusers think we are just using the milder of names, there is no such thing, because under moments of high stress, if we are in the habit of name calling the worse of the worse will slip out. Words are like brands on cattle we can never take them back or remove them. All apologies will ring hollow in the ears of the verbally abused, for a lifetime.

Too many people seem to be clueless to the fact that loving each other is not the problem. Liking each other is a real struggle. The more we use words in the form of name calling or in other derogatory forms to try to end an argument the more we set ourselves up to destroy our relationships for life. Not only do we need to stop acting like children and quit using name calling as a response mechanism; our children need to be punished with cell phone or Wii removal for a period of time, or something that will cause a hardship in their lives the first time we hear the words of disrespect come out of their mouths. We can not expect our children to respect us or others, if we never teach respect.

If we are calling names ourselves then it is going to be tough for them to have any respect for us if we do it and punish them for it.”Do as I say not as I do,” has never worked and we only fool ourselves by thinking or saying,”this is my home and I can do anything I want,” or “as long as you live under my roof you will do as you are told.” Both phrases only convince them that we are either a bully or think they are stupid.

They know we not only have a moral obligation to raise our children to adulthood but a legal one as well. If our children are still living at home after they are old enough to be on their own it only tells them that we will never force them out anyway, regardless of how they speak to us.

Verbal abuse is one of the hardest forms of abuse to defend against. When we allow ourselves to stoop to the level of children by name calling we destroy the respect of our children many times for life.No different than husbands and wives do when they do the same thing.

We give to and sacrifice for our children because we love them and want to give to them,in many cases, but another well-worn phrase that means nothing to our children is,”after all the things that I have done for you.” Children are about as manipulative as they come and they get smarter every year. They also understand that if they tell us that such and such has and I don’t have…..a great deal of what we will buy for them, is many times purchased to stop the child from whining,to gain our children’s love,to make ourselves look good,to compete with our friends, or simply that they won when they got what they wanted because we were too stupid (in their minds) to know we were being played by them.

Too many people just form the idea that our children are rebelling and do not bother to do anything about it. Yes if we have done our jobs and taught them to be self-sufficient and then turn around and treat them like babies or if we haven’t done our jobs, teenagers will rebel. What too many parents do not understand is there is almost always a reason for those bad moods as well. We need to get to the bottom of why the outbursts are becoming more and more frequent. Parents who withdraw during this time of their children’s’ life thinking what ever it is they are just going to have to work it out for themselves because they are adults now, can make or break the difference in the lives of their child.

“Our children need to know we trust them,” is the most ridiculous response we can give to rebellion.What they really need to know is they have a parent in their life who gives a damn if they do make a mistake. Many times they are going through the worse struggles of their lifetimes and there will never be any time in their lives that they will need their parents more than during this time. They need our ability to guide them when they are in doubt or do not have the capacity to work themselves out of the mess they may have gotten themselves into,still often after they leave home, but definitely while they are still at home.

We must make them know we are approachable and welcome them in our lives. If we offer both a refrigerator filled with Coke or Pepsi and a private place for them to gather they will many times make our homes their “crash Pads”(sorry that is an old 60’s phrase). Other times if we are up when they come home they many times will want to talk if they know we are accessible and we are playing the adult role expected of parents.

They all have friends what they really need are parents.I do understand the difficulty of getting them to talk, sometimes is like trying to have a conversation with a porcupine, but reaching out to them at this time in their lives will often spell the difference between success or failure in their lives.If we are ever going to be the grown ups it is never more important than this time of their lives.

If we are childish enough to call them names or go after them on attack they will be at their friends houses getting the advice, many times, that will be the last thing we want them to be getting. Like for instance,” have another beer or do you want a smoke before you leave?” Our children only bring their nicest friends around to meet us. Those that they know we will never approve of but who have the connections to the”good times” are the ones we never meet.

We parents need to reach out and offer understanding during the teen years as well as be on our toes full-time as to where they are hanging out and who they are spending time with. When we do find out we need to ask questions in regards to what their thoughts are in how they plan on handling a situation and ask them if we can offer a little imput to the situation. When we go in with all barrels drawn on the attack and stinging them with name calling we will never be part of this important time of their lives.

I repeat that both children and sometimes adults, become what we say they are. The more positive you/we are towards our/your children and wives the more positive they will be in return and it works the same with negativity. Call your daughters or wife a whore and they will often prove you correct, regardless of what age they are.For all of us adults who do not already know and understand this, many times it is the person who is having the affair that yells foul the fastest and the loudest.

If we refuse to grow up our children will do the same. They are faced with so many mixed emotions as in one way they cannot wait until they leave home and in another they wouldn’t mind being a child for a lifetime if we have been generous to them while they were growing up. We have already had our chance and now its time we be the grown up who guides the family through the storm. When we guide them through the toughest parts of adolescence and their young adult years so they become the people they were meant to be,it will be the best journey we ever take when the grandchildren are placed in our arms.

(If this subject matter sounds familiar it is because I have written on it several times in the past. I will continue doing so until I quit hearing Parents say,”What can we do? They are teenagers,” Next to the new-born stages they are the most important years of our child’s development, in my opinion. Good Luck and enjoy the humbling experience they teach us all.)

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Despite the differences in all of us, the only real thing that all children,adults,families,schoolmates,neighbors,co-workers and all people who make up our daily lives are looking for is acceptance.

We often find that people who have lived in a community ,neighborhood or worked at a place longer than the rest feels an entitlement to make certain the new people know how we do things around here. If the new comers refuse to accept our ways of doing things, many times it can turn out to an all out war of the Hatfields and the McCoys. If we have never put up a fence and the outsiders want a privacy fence for their own reasoning the fur sometimes will start flying. If the new employee has learned a more efficient way of processing information than what we learned and refuse to accept what we are teaching them then the feelings are stepped on to the detriment of harmony in the office many times. We all want acceptance in our lives.

When trouble developes in families,neighborhoods,at school or the work place it can usually be traced back to a group or individual who has tried to force conformity on the rest of the people or population to accept their terms of the way things should be done. Change comes difficult for some and they will fight tooth and nail to make certain that change never happens even when the majority have grown to accept that it is necessary to move on or ahead in order to maintain acceptance of the majority in a Democracy,harmony, or to improve on the past.

Trouble usually begins in large families when siblings marry and start bringing in new ideas that are foreign to the pecking order that the family had established years ago. If big brother or big sister had assumed the role of parenting and became comfortable in dishing out orders or making decisions and little sister or brother feel they have a better way of doing things then problems will arise. The older siblings have grown to accept that they are in charge and how dare they be upstaged by a different way of thinking or doing things. The same is true when parents feel because of their station in life their children are bound to accept their dictates for life and if they do not then they will simply disown them,in some cases.

When couples get married and accept that they will refuse to do everything the same way their parents did but instead will form a relationship based on their own acceptance of what standards they will keep and which they will discard they are behaving in a totally natural and healthy frame of mind. Maturity is all about forming our own boundaries and acceptance of the input into what our marriage will represent and look like to us.

When we refuse any acceptance or imput into the formation of our own marriage from our husbands or wives, because Mom or Dad would never approve or did not do it that way or believe in that political party or religion and a wife or husband instead determine that they will live their lives identical to the way their parents or siblings have always dictated, we leave no room for our partners acceptance into our lives. These marriages are in trouble from day one and indicate an immaturity in the couple that suggest they were not ready for marriage.

Marriages last because of our acceptance of both of our differences as well as our likes.Too many people fail to understand that many of us form the idea that we are what we do or like and when there is no acceptance of our likes or differences we often feel that there is no acceptance of us. When we determine the moral ground that we will choose to conform to in order to maintain who we are or to raise a family we accept each other. We need to be on the same page morally in order for a base of trust to form.

If one of the partners are moral and the other immoral we immediately start forming a crack in the foundation of trust that holds the rest of the body of our marriage together. Make no mistakes about it, immoral includes trying to control or dictate to our spouses through the use of force or abuse how they will live their life. Just as it does in the way we spend money or bankrupt the family, on wants over needs. It is when we can no longer accept each others differences that we quit liking or respecting each other and the marriage divides.The character of a person plays a huge role in whether we will accept each other and whether our marriage will last.

The same is true about raising children. What children really want from their parents is acceptance of who they are and what they enjoy doing. When men want a football or baseball star because they think their son has the aptitude they quite often turn the child into what they want instead of what the child wants. Most sons will go along with their Dads because all children starve for their parents acceptance. It is true when mothers turn their daughters into beauty pageants,send them to dance school or cheerleading.

Although it is fine to expose our children to different forms of possible accomplishments in life too many of us fail to hear the child when they say,”Mom and Dad I would rather do…..” Many times it is a far worse crises for a child to feel that they disappoint their parents than it is to speak out and say they do not want to do what Mom and Dad want because most children will do anything to gain acceptance and to avoid disappointing mom and dad. When they do say they want to quit we need to see ourselves as successful parents who have given them a voice in their own lives.

We need to let go of the idea that if we sign up a child to something that we want because we are choosing to live our lives vicariously through our child, that when our children say they would rather quit and do something different they are not failures.There will be things that all children need to learn in order to safe guard their own safety in the future such as discipline and punishment for bad behavior,taking responsibility for their own actions, swimming, basic first aid course and a good education and these we cannot let them decide that they do want to quit. Raising our children successfully is about what their genetic code is telling them and acceptance of their differences from our own.

Just as our parents raised a child or children who grew up to be nothing that they dreamt we would be and learn to accept that,if it was a functional home,we need to do the same in our homes. It is only when we refuse to accept each other for the path that they choose that families will and do disintegrate and form black sheep. When we all are living a moral life regardless of our differences there should never be a black sheep in the family. None of us get to judge who is living a moral life and who is not because just like people have difference in ideas they also have differences in spiritual beliefs and how and where they will worship.

If we are not breaking God’s law or Man’s law we are moral according to our own right to accept the direction we choose to take. The rhetoric and hate being spewed by the politicians should never be considered as moral in our homes to the point that politics destroy our families the way they are destroying their own party with the voters. Life is about me accepting you and you accepting me. God Bless us all!

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The two biggest arguments that women use when staying in an abusive relationship are:”I still love him,” and “He is a good father.”

If we could get through the message to people who are abused that it takes both people to show and express love and that love does not hurt then perhaps the abused would look at their relationships more realistically. I’m not sure how we do that,myself, as many times the abused have been told so many times “how worthless they are.” many are convinced that they and their children can not survive if they do leave the marriage. All I do know for certain is that telling women that they do have a duty and obligation to go back to the marriage bed and to try harder to work with their husbands and to pray does not work and often leads to tragedy to the entire family.

All the favorite meals,mood lightening, and following detail to the explicit demands of an abuser does nothing towards stopping the abuse, either. One of the other problems of abuse is many times when women do say, “I don’t have time to do what he wants today,” and he does come home and beats her,she will think it is her fault because she did not follow orders. The abused do start believing that they are as dumb,fat, and ugly as they are being told they are by the abuser. They all forgive and promise they will never do it again,of course,but it never last. During the forgiveness period many are that sweet loveable person the women fell in love with and they become convinced they are deeply in love and could never leave, all over again. Living in fear becomes a rush and if it does not become comfortable then it becomes normal for them, the longer it goes on. It becomes easier all the time to deny all of the rest.

Of course, a parent who is thinking clearly, would never say,”He mistreats me but he is a good father.” We all understand that children cannot watch turmoil between their parents and come out with anything but psychological damage as a result of it.We know that whether children are watching abuse take place on others or it being inflicted on themselves, it alters the personality of the person they were meant to be as early as 3 years of age. To cause this kind of damage to a child does not make any of us a good parent when we realize that this type of harm or damage will affect the entire life of our children. They will grow up totally confused as to how to effectively deal with a relationship and many times will abuse themselves.

Other times the children come out just as demoralized as the battered women because just as she has no self-esteem or identity beyond him neither do the children. The sons will often repeat the same disgusting names to both their mother or sisters as are coming out of the mouth of the abuser.Many times he learns that the only value women have is to wait on and look after a man. The sons learn to bully and the daughters learn to withdraw, other times sons will become intimidated and withdraw while daughters become more aggressive and tend to become more sexually active when incest, many times becomes part of the abuse as well. This is typical behavior patterns when the abused are saying.”He is a good father.” no differently than when the children are being beaten as well.

Policemen can pick up the mentally ill and have them hospitalized without family approval in cases of discovery according to the Baker law. The problem is that putting women into shelters under the same circumstances will often times jeopardize the safety of the other abused women who are in hiding. If the victims do not want to go or be there, which is often the case, they will get ahold of their abusers and let them know where they are and once the secret address of the shelter becomes known then the safety it offers for other abused victims no longer exists.

Like all of the problems that do seem unsolvable there are solutions once an entire community of experts put their heads together to come up with different ideas. Sadly that all costs money and time and too many do not have one or the other to offer to the group. I am the first to admit that I do not have much to offer in way of solution,myself. I just understand that as long as we ourselves go into denial when our friends tell us they ran into something that gave them the black eye,because we do not want to embarrass our friend,we do the abused a disservice by not discussing it. Too many are ashamed to talk about it but once confronted by understanding instead of accusations, when the relationship is a close one,many times they will want to talk.

If we educate ourselves on the knowledge available to them like going to see their Doctor or the police and enquire about getting into a shelter or they will only repeat the behavior until it becomes worse, we can help empower them. Offering sympathy will only make them feel better temporary and they will go back to the abuse. Other times they will rely on us for their courage and do nothing else, Many times when the abuser finds out the abused are relying on a confidant they will end the relationship. I repeat, we need to empower them to get help so they do not rely on our hand holding but instead rely on their own ability to seek help.

Currently in some of the States when police are being called to domestic calls, both the abuser and the victim are being arrested and spend the night in jail or at least a couple of hours until things cool down a little. I do not think putting abused victims in jail is right but if we did pass laws that made protecting abuse and abusers illegal in our State, perhaps the abused could be hospitalized and at least kept long enough to try to work with the mental damage that is often done to the entire family by an abuser. I can already see the problems that could come out of that as well, and that is why abuse is such a difficult problem to work with and to solve.

Like everything else that is preventive, we simply need to learn and educate ourselves while we are dating and making lifetime choices for a mate. If he or she strikes or hits us or throws things at us, while dating, he or she will become much worse after marriage. Dating is the time that we are on the best of behavior and any names being thrown at us while dating will go from being cute to vindictive after marriage. Anger that is not part of the grieving process very rarely subsides without being able to release it. Healthy people will talk to someone or get professional help in order to either let go or to work more effectively around it. Others hide it behind alcohol and drugs. If we are doing both with the abusers while dating then we need to understand the hell we will put our children through if we marry them and continue the same recreational behavior.

All parents need to know and understand just how important an education beyond highschool is to all of our children. Both boys and girls. Too many times the number one reason that our children do stay in an abusive situation is because of the fear that they could not financially support their children alone,as well as, they can by staying in the abusive situation. Education does not only give them the out to do that but it also establishes the confidence in our children that often leads to their knowing they deserve better and to get out before any more damage is done to their children or our grandchildren. None of the expensive birthday parties or clothes that we are currently buying them will lead to the success of their lives as an education will. Even though abuse does also exist in the educated, it is considerably less, and nothing empowers our children like an education does.

Whatever lays ahead for abuse I feel it needs to be dealt with,as it lies at the root cause of what Americans should be most ashamed of, as well as, is twin to crime, in America today. To just wash our hands and give up or worse yet to blame the victims and do nothing, when we are so much better as a Nation than that,shows poorly against us all.At the same time I applaud all of you who have dedicated their years and time working towards finding solutions only to find out that the root problem towards solutions does lie in the victims themselves, who have been so deeply brainwashed in fear or have learned to adapt to it,to the point they do refuse help offered to them,too many times.Somewhere there is a bridge that will join the gap that does lead to successful treatment and my faith is in the fact that we will find it. Thanks to all of you who are looking.

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Until we can make women and men understand and realize that the only way we can stop abuse is for adult people, who are being abused, to empower themselves,abuse will always remain.Unless we accept the reality of it happening in one out of every three homes on every block in every town,city or village, and being protected by our Christian-Judeo Society with the power of the right-wing, Tea Party and special interest groups in their corner, abuse will remain the corner-stone of crime in America.

If you have been reading my posts then you understand that I write about taking responsibility for ourselves and teaching our children to do the same. We women cannot get stronger as long as we all hold the hand of the women who are being abused, since in doing so we continue weakening them as well as ourselves. Instead we need to point out to women who will and do protect abuse and abusers what their responsibilities are and help to empower them against such treatment. Sitting in judgment of them or pointing fingers and finding blame, is no better than offering sympathy and doing nothing.

If they do get the courage to leave then we need to be certain that they are kept safe by making laws that will keep them safe as well as providing the necessary support systems that they will need. We have already made good gains in those areas and now we must convince them through our Churches that love does not hurt. Divorce is acceptable when the protection of our families are at stake. As long as abused and neglected children are growing up to become criminals and being put to death, then we need to empower ourselves into knowing and understanding that we cannot be treated like second class citizens or worse, unless we allow ourselves to be treated that way.

We know that anger-management classes that are court ordered for abusive people,whether men or women fail. We know the laws are set up to let men off sometimes in a matter of months when they kill their children and wives and are found guilty of manslaughter. Women will serve much longer if not the full 20 years, when they kill the abusers. We know that rapist and pedophiles are never cured.

We know that men have been viewed for centuries as being weak if they cannot control their women.We offer very little in the form of help or understanding for men who are victims of abuse.A real man settles his differences with fist in many parts of our Society.

We know 9 million Morman people believe women cannot go to Heaven unless a man takes them there. We know the many other millions into the billions of women have been brain washed into believing it is their duty to serve their man and make them happy regardless of how they are being treated in return. They do tell the men they must respect their women,wink wink.

Is there any wonder that bullies start out on the playgrounds of school and grow up to bully all their lives? We as a Society are clearly condoning if not promoting the superiority of men in a Christian-Judeo environment. When we add ignorance to power we get abuse.

Unless we women empower ourselves to realize that the only way our children will be safe is for women to be safe, then abuse will never stop.As long as we concern ourselves about abortion then we will never concern ourselves about the real problem and that is our own safety and empowerment.

We know that in families where men and sons are being waited on that the sons will grow up and expect it of their wives. We also know that young girls are growing up being taught that the only future they do have is to serve her man and make babies that they cannot afford to educate if they were not already being taught that education is the damnation of all mankind,anyway.

We know there is more abuse in these families than there is in families that teach equality. We know that Church goers are being taught that people who teach equality in a marriage and home are no good liberals spreading lies in order to defeat religion,such as myself. We know that if men hit they do not stop hitting.The few that do leave women living in fear with the words and anger that continues. We know their sons will grow up and do the same. We also know when mothers abuse their daughters grow up to abuse as well. Both men and women are abused.

We know that when men and women are abused so are the children abused. We know far more women are abused by the cowards who are bigger and stronger than they are and the only defense a woman has against the men is a weapon, unless they are granted all of our Blessings and Dispensations to leave the marriage without making them feel guilt. We know the scars left on children watching mom being beaten or killed will travel hurt and harm through at least three, if not more, of the generations of that family.

We know that if we believe that incest is in low numbers and we keep the real numbers protected, then people will be less concern about young women who are abused and less understanding of the need for abortion. We know if we can keep women’s’ emotions upset over abortion then we can get them to vote for the right-wing and tea party candidates who want to change the Constitution to deny equal rights.

We know that poverty and prostitution is the number one cause of abortion and yet there is a movement under way, that does not seem to concern the religious community, to legalize prostitution. The fact that it has served the pleasure of the superior male species only and has not been considered adultery in past history and existed since the days of the bible makes it acceptable,sadly. Even when it is the number one cause of death in young women either through, disease,murder or addiction.

I have only scratched the surface of why abuse happens and if not smiled on, certainly we are and have been blinding ourselves to the truth of it since the beginning of time. The only way we can stop it is by women taking responsibility for their own poor behavior because men never will give up the place of superiority over women unless we women make it clear that we and our children will no longer tolerate being treated that way. We begin today by educating ourselves.

If he is abusive he is abusive. It is not our fault that he is an inhumane jerk but it is our fault if we put up with it. If we date jerks we will marry jerks. If we marry jerks our children will pay the biggest price of all for the poor choices we make. If we sleep with everyone we meet then we will definitely fall for one of them and it only takes one to destroy the rest of our life along with our children. Divorce does cause pain to our children but it causes less pain than watching their mothers being beaten or cleaning up their blood.

Just as we women and the majority of good descent men, who come from functional homes, want to see our children happy our children want to see their moms and dads happy and the only way we can accomplish that is in equality of the genders. Women need to take the choices they make much more serious than what a man looks like and how he dresses and men need to do the same. Character can be disguised for a while but it can’t be hidden forever and for the sakes of ourselves as well as our children we need to make it our top priority.

No self-respecting human being will want to take control over another adult human being who is family, much less call the mother of their children a whore, bitch,slut and worse.Unless we are a policeman, a member of the Court system, or a jailer we guide and offer help to people, we do not control them. We need to take ownership of our own responsibility and teach our children the same by practicing and teaching equal respect for all the God-given abilities that both genders are given. We begin today.

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Too many of us fail to follow our own instincts when we know that something is not quite right or when something will work. If we would train ourselves, to trust our instincts, we would sometimes do better in life.

Our own instincts go into high alert when danger is near by. In many ways we are not that far removed from the wild, as animals are. Just as their ears perk and they stomp, when danger is near by, we also sense that same foreboding. Our hearts will race a little and we need to train our attention towards our surroundings and to go on high alert as well. We need to learn to trust and rely on our own instincts more than we do. Too many of us just dismiss them and go along willingly. It is often times a sense of fatalism on our parts that takes over and does make us give in. Many of us mistake the warning or alerts for,”I knew this was going to happen” and instead succumb to them.Other times we think I must just be dreaming or imagining things.

If it is not typical behavior for us to imagine things or to hear things then we need to trust those instincts, more clearly. We cannot live our lives on our instincts alone, although some do. We do need to mix in a little common sense. For instance if we live in the plains and have a fear of heights we do need to either determine if we are going to test our limits by getting over the fear or if we are just going to accept that our fear of heights is real and stay away from cliffs and mountain tops.

If everything makes us afraid then we do need professional help to sort out when our instincts are real or if we are suffering from Anxiety, an Obsessive compulsive disorder or Post traumatic Stress or some other affliction, and get the help we need, so that we can learn to trust our instincts better as well as enjoy life more. I stress if fear or anxiety, is not common behavior for us, then we need to trust our instincts for what they are telling us.

I have always imagined that if I faced a dangerous situation, I would just freeze up, and go along but with age comes more understanding of who we are and a little more sense of our own reactions to life,sometimes. Carrying a cane gives me a new sense of hope as to having a weapon. I now think I would be “hell on wheels” and pity the poor sucker that would try to take me and my cane on. I came to that conclusion when a mother and daughter were having a “knock down drag out fight.” and I came between them, only to find out later the mother always carries a knife. I am pleased to say that they were so shocked that a stranger would care, that they no longer hit each other, according to rumor. When I finished talking to them, they were apologizing and telling each other they were sorry.

We could prevent some of the muggings or rapes if we would learn to trust our instincts and how we react to stress. For those who have not heard yet:Never get in a car or vehicle and leave the area because our chances are much better of getting help if we remain in the area that we are in, as versus, being taken out to an isolated area where no one will hear our screams for help. A scream or a proper placed kick or resisting many times will scare off the attacker.However many are successful because they do use the element of surprise so we do need to check our backs as well.

When our instincts are on high alert we need to turn around and look behind us, as well as, look to both sides. If we run into a store or business when we feel this alert, or in the open where other people are, we may feel like we would embarrass ourselves but it is always better to do that than it is to not trust our own instincts.

Think of an excuse that you will use if you have to make a quick dodge into a business or store. We were feeling a little faint and could we sit for a moment, many times will do the trick.Other times people are coming and going to the point we may not even be noticed as being out-of-place. If we are in a neighborhood then turn and go up to an apartment building as if we live there and sometimes they will drive on by, if they have been stalking us for a while. Do not forget to pull out the phone and act like you are placing a call. Sometimes cell phones can make us less alert so make certain you are tuned in as you walk.Do remember though that most of the attacks will happen at night-time and make a schedule of taking a different route or going with a friend and do not walk if you can take transportation instead.

If I could take a quote from Dr. Phil,”The best judge of future behavior is past behavior.” If when we are dating someone we find something is not working or we are not communicating on the same level then we need to question ourselves. If we are ever abused by either name calling or they are expressing a great deal of anger by hitting windows or dashes or even ourselves,or throwing objects at us while breaking everything in the place, or they manipulate us by crying to get what they want from us when we know there simply is not money to buy it, then please know marriage will only make it worse. When two people learn to live together and share the same check book as well as the same hours and bed we take on stress in a relationship, through marriage, we do not relieve it. When we add children to it then it doubles.

If our instincts are telling us that this person is not just right somehow, then trust ourselves or trust that we are not right for them. It is easy to think that others are disturbed when in truth we ourselves are not always operating with,” a light on in the antic.”, ourself. Anytime anyone is using anger and aggression to control us or others over their common sense or judgment to show and give us respect, then the problem is us.When we give over control of our own life, instead of taking control of our life, we fail not only ourselves,but everyone else who cares about us.

Run, don’t walk away from this type of relationship. If our friends are telling us what we obviously refuse to see,we have a duty to ourselves, to trust them as well as our own instincts that are warning us, if we are trying to deny what our conscience already knows is the truth. If, on the other hand, our friends and family can not see what we know to be true and are telling us that it is just jitters or we are nuts because he/she are a nice person and come from a good family, and we know differently, then we need to listen to only ourself.

Just as instincts can warn us against danger our instincts can tell us when we are on the right path when solving a mystery,protecting our own safety, making a decision,or even investing in something we feel strongly will work. Many times the most successful amongst us are those who do rely on and do trust their instincts. What our instincts are telling us will not hold up in a Court of law,it does not offer proof to others, sometimes too often people will use it to speculate about others, but it like our conscience seldom fails us morally. So the next time our instincts tell us that the decision we are making is a right one or alarms are going off, remember,”Sometimes we just know what we know,” and learn to trust it. We can only empower ourselves by taking control of our own life. No one else can do it for us nor can we contol their lives, and expect positive results.

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We have all known them. They are the ones who say,”No matter how hard I tried, I could never catch a break.”,”I just wasn’t lucky like other people were”,”My husband never had the temperament that would have ever allowed us to succeed”,”I could never have done that,” “Or it seems like whatever I did there was always someone out to get me.’

A great deal of the cloud that seems to follow some,at least in their minds, does have to do with their own attitudes. Many do have an opportunity to prove themselves but when they reach the point it is going to mean real effort on their part they quit or fail to put forth the effort it takes to achieve. There are people who are genuinely afraid of success because if they fail at it, they will not be able to blame anyone but themselves nor will they be able to convince others or themselves what a hollowing success they could have been if they were just given the chance to prove themselves. Other times we have such a low self-esteem that we will defeat ourselves before we even get started.

Our attitudes play a great role in the signals we give off to future or current employers.Our appearance and how we dress, use to play a bigger role on the job than it does now, but most places still hire on that alone,if we have the youth and education to go along with it. Previous experience will always win out over none. If we argue each time that we cannot put in the extra hours it will not be long before we are slated for heading out of the door. If we always have aches and pains or allergies that interpret to the idea that we are not able to handle the job, we won’t be asked to do it, and we will once more be slated for dismissal.If we are the local loud mouth who knows everything but our performance lags then we also many times will get the pink slips.

There are many times, people who take jobs because they are getting pressure from home and have no intent of holding the job any longer than it takes to leave and draw unemployment,We need to show initiative to get ahead on our own and many times when we don’t we defeat our own ability to make gains in the Company, Others have the attitude that they are better than the 9 to 5 job. They think they are slated for greater things and the 9 to 5 jobs are for losers and slouches but not for them.

Most of us fail to realize that the largest part of our wealth, we will ever gain towards retirement comes from the income that we earn during our productive years. If we never save and spend every penny of it we will never have what others have. We may have a nicer wardrobe or more shoes that go out of style one season to the next but we will not be able to accumulate enough income that will grow towards retirement.If we do not pay bills when they are due then the amount of the fees and interests we pay along with the over-draft fees many times will come to much more than what we spent on the original item in the first place. We all have way more money to spend once we realize how much is going out and make being debt free our first priority. Much of our earned income is often times the only money that we will ever have.

Many investments will and do fail. Too many people will stick whatever they have all in one basket and if the person who runs the Company,Savings and loan, or fund is corrupt or has hired an inept person or people, we will and do lose every penny we did set aside for later. Often the failure will frighten us off to the point that we never invest again. When we do allow failure to frighten ourselves off we can be certain that we will lose even more, in the long run. Every financially successful person has failed a number of times before they did get it right.

Unless we work for family or are able to establish a successful small business of our own, rare is the person who will not be laid off at least once,lose one home and need to move. Even when we do work for ourselves more will fail than succeed. To think we won’t stumble or be forced to start over at some point in our life is somewhat naive. More people will work and retire at 65 when they work for a small business than a large firm. It is almost unheard of today in any large Company or Corporation.

We need to understand the credentials and history of all the top echelon,who are calling all the shots on our investment. We need to beware of diversity and spreading what we are able to save, through various avenues other than putting our earned income all into one basket. As bad as it is to lose part of our investment, it is always better than to lose all of it.

Just because a business has a store front or a past reputation of making money or delivering good advice, does not mean that all people within the network are always capable. Many times Dad and Grandpa will have run a profitable business and the children will run it into the ground, along with board members who are more valued out of friendship than business savvy.

Check on your investments. Don’t just put them in and assume they are safe. Sometimes we will know more or understand the economy better than those hired to protect our investments. If it is too good to be true then it is too good to be true no matter how good of a friend your friend says this guy is. We never pay anyone anything to win or to inherit anything and anyone who tells us that we have won or been left an inheritance that we just have to pay the taxes on are nothing but scam and con artists and in some cases can be quite dangerous if we refuse to pay after we have already made the mistake to pay once.

The reason our grandparents told all of us to set aside a little something for a rainy day is because it was wise advice. When the day comes when we need to replace the roof or buy new appliances we do not want to take out another loan on the house, whatever we or the savings or loan or the banks call the loan, a home improvement loan or a loan by any other name that clears equity in our homes is, nothing more than taking out a second mortgage. It may be that we borrow against another holding or replace one appliance at a time as the need arises. Other times we can save our bonuses and tax returns so that we can do individual rooms at a time, and pay cash as we go.

Refinancing,unless it is for a lower interests rate,is never more than a second mortgage. Second and third mortgages do not only raise our interests rates across the board they make us all more vulnerable as our house will be foreclosed on where the homes with equity in them have other options at the time our lives take drastic changes. When we still have equity in our homes, we will have the option to sell sometimes at a comfortable profit and reinvest in something smaller or to reorganize or refinance, because we will have leverage in equity or cash.

I repeat, people never want to take the equity they gain out of their homes as to do so means we are getting second and third mortgages and making ourselves much more vulnerable when the job decides we have reached 50 and it is time to work us out of the Company because the department we were hired to work in is being phased out or we are being laid off at any age. Too many people fail to realize that no matter how loyal we are to a large Company or Corporation, the company is only interested in profit and that is their bottom line. Their intent is to please the stock holders first. There are no more of the work until your 65 and we will give you the gold watch ceremonies, left in Large Companies or Corporations.

More and more people are finding that their terms of employment are ending between 45 and 50. There are supposed to be laws against that but all Companies have their own team of lawyers who dot every I and cross every t before they lay us off and can find grounds by simply saying the Company is going a new direction. There will be tons of class action lawyers trying to get you to pay a little something or to sign on the dotted line and they will go after the bastards but believe me, it is for the lawyers benefits more times than not. More Companies are also hiring two-part time employees over one full-time in order to get out of paying for benefits.We need to be aware of our own ability to put aside and to invest and never trust someone else who is promising us a sweet deal. Too many sweet deals end up in their pocket and they are the only ones who will get the sweet deal. The rest of us will be broke. Never believe the person who tells us that they just need to borrow for a short time until their own cash comes,unless we can verify the information ourselves. If it means paying a penalty to cash in our own personal investments, then don’t do it.

The question was then,”Do we Choose Our Own Financial Misery?” The answer is many times “yes”, especially when we ourselves are the worse offenders of all when it comes to spending more than we earn. Other times it’s a little greyer of an area. Some of us are just too trusting, other times people are immigrants and not aware of our laws, cons prey on the elderly who no longer have the ability to reason and do not have family members to guide them. Other times people are bankrupted by health and crime.Corrupt Evangelists or corrupt Cults can convince many deeply religious or confused people to sign over everything they have or own.

No one is better skilled than the manipulator or con artists who sometimes are our own children,parents or extended family members. Yes we do all need to understand that people will stand in line once they find out that we are generous or aging, to get every dime we have and we are responsible to know the difference, but many times we are people who fail to know that con people are everywhere. It is important that we do appoint a trustworthy person to handle our accounts or to set up trusts and handle our estates while we do have the ability to know who is dependable and not.

If the estate is small, then the safest way many times, is putting it into small varied accounts and C.D.s,bonds, or interests bearing savings accounts in your local bank. You won’t get rich this way but at least your money will be safe as the bank will ask you why you are taking out the money and they can advise you if that would be wise or not. Never,never, never trust the person who tells you not to tell your bank why you need the money. That has crime written all over it.

I guess then the truth to the question is yes,if we are talking about a family who had the physical and mental potential to earn a middle-class existence or better,unless we are victims of health problems that bankrupt us and of crime that we could not foresee. We all have a responsibility to make and find our own financial stability. We are not only responsible for earning the income but also responsible for how we use or spend the income we earn.

We need to educate ourselves as well as listen to the opinions of the experts, to know if it is more feasible to borrow money and on what terms as well as where and when we should invest. It is true that many times those who are willing to take the greater risk, as long as it is done with some knowledge or common sense, are more likely going to make the greater gains. We can be too cautious if we do not educate ourselves on taking a few risk and doing our own research on it.There are still more honest people in the business than dishonest.Many times we can and do well to use a combination of both ourselves as well as bonded brokers,realtors,bankers,and financiers,which the great majority are.Some will be “dice throwers” while others are conservative investors and if you have done your homework you will know the difference. Sometimes the investments can justify borrowing money as the investment will bring us a greater return than what we will pay out on interest.

Too many people have wrongly gone with the idea; “we need to spend money in order to make money”, without understanding fully what the risk are that it entails.Some not many people, who have more knowledge and income than we do, can make that idea work, but it does not come without a high risk ratio, especially if we go into it blindly. If getting rich this way was such a sure thing or a common occurrence then there would be more than 1.3% of the population,with most of those having inherited from oil, in the wealthy class. As long as we look for blame and make excuses we can always find both but neither will protect our income.

Many of us do not knowingly cause our own hardships but regardless of if it is our homes,checking accounts, or extra income we do need to get the information that is necessary to protect ourselves against those who would manipulate or con us out of it. Although our hearts do go out to those who really did think they were doing the right thing and met the wrong person or people whose only interests lie in making certain that the trusting and good of heart do end up broke. We cannot spend everything in our productive years and think we will be retired to do the things that we wish to do when we retire. The Ryan Plan backed by the Republican majority is another such move to spell disaster to those who are unprepared for retirement. We must tell our Congressmen,to “Leave Social Security and Medicare, alone!”

We should make the laws tougher against the corrupt and con artists but sadly a great majority of them are never prosecuted because it cost too much to do so. We all need to remember that regardless of our age, our own identity can be stolen in a matter of seconds, and that is no treat to try to correct,either. All credit cards,checking accounts and Social Security numbers are subject to theft with or without our own carelessness, sadly.

If we remember nothing else,”Ignorance is no excuse in the face of the law,” and “the only person we can trust to be as concern as we are about our own money is ourselves,” If we fail, before we turn our money over to another, to check to see if an insurance company, savings and loan Company, a broker or an individual is licensed, Federally insured or are bonded, as well as,check out the safety and financial records that are a matter of public record, on other institutions, we do need to understand that sometimes our money is not safe.

We need to both educate ourselves ,as well as, understand that everyone even those that others call a good Christian person is not always an honest or moral person. We are no less responsible than if we turn over our money to a family member who is a drug or alcohol addict and we know they will spend it on drugs or alcohol. Just because they attend our Church does not mean they have our best interests at heart. Too often we blame the banks when it is our own lack of knowledge as well as those closest to us that we should evaluate closer.

We can’t live our lives in paranoia so we need to do the next best thing and that is use our own common sense and learn to protect that which is ours. If we do not check out their credentials or make certain our money is guaranteed safe or protected, then we do need to take responsibility when it is lost. The stock market is no better of a bet, sometimes, than a slot machine in many cases. When we decide to take the risk to earn more we are doing just that,”We are taking a risk,”The good news is Americans are paying off personal debt at a higher rate than ever. Have a good day folks and understand a smile goes much further than gossip towards making us all feel better.
(Please note: I repeated myself in several places so that it does stick in our minds)

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