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Posts Tagged ‘Teen Life’

My Letter to Michelle Obama by Amy J. Matthews…

October 28, 2012 1 comment

Dear Mrs. Obama:

I am writing to you today because I respect you very much, and I know how important both the issues of Domestic Violence and the right of everyone to have Affordable Health Care are to you.

I want to introduce you to an amazing woman and advocate Susan Murphy- Milano. Susan is currently dying of Cancer due to the lack of Health Insurance. Everywhere she applied for help turned her down and she was informed that she did not qualify for their services. I know you agree that there is something terribly wrong when a country as great as ours can let this happen to anyone, yet alone someone who has devoted her entire life to saving the  lives of others and without once thinking about what it could mean to her own.

Susan grew up in Chicago, the daughter of a 30-year veteran Chicago Police Detective and Violent Crimes Investigator Phillip Murphy. Susan’s father murdered her mother in 1989 and then turned the gun on himself committing suicide.  His intent was to kill his daughter as well. On the way to the house to try to save her mother something made her take an unexpected turn on the way. This decision is the only reason Susan is alive today. Had she taken her normal route Susan would not be with us now! Susan lived a life of trying to keep her mother alive her entire life and after her mother was murdered she devoted her entire life to saving others.

This most amazing woman is now on her last days after putting up a good fight. I am writing you today because I know you care. I know you care about the women and children in this country, the state of our health care, and every person’s God given human right. It is not just women and children that Susan has saved; there is no gender bias when it comes to abuses towards another.

Susan is the leading expert on Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence, and at the time when she discovered she had Cancer she was already in stage 4. This all happened just as her lifelong dreams were coming true. Susan is the women who mentored Rev. Neil Schori , Stacy Peterson’s Pastor and taught him everything he knows about Intimate Partner violence. Together they created The Evidentiary Abuse Affidavit    which is a legal document that can be used in court as legal testimony even if the victim is murdered or missing.

This tragic news about Susan came just as her lifelong work was getting known. Susan was getting invitations from law enforcement agencies all over the country to come and train Law Enforcement and first responders what to look for when they answer a call, or respond to a crime scene.  She was preparing to start working at a University where she was given Carte Blanche and offered full use of the Universities resources to help her with her work. She did not apply to work at this University they came to her asking her to please come and head this project. Susan was offered her own Television Show which was scheduled to air this winter.  Again she was approached by the producers she did not seek them they sought Susan. These are just a few of the triumphs that have a major impact in the field of Intimate Partner Violence!  Susan was now in high demand all over the country. But her work was suddenly halted in its prime due to her health.

Susan had a good chance to recover had she had the treatment she needed. This is a disgrace and an embarrassment for this Country which I know you and the President both agree. I am so sorry that the President’s Health plan has been fought against and has not been put into place. This is something that may have saved not only the life of this amazing woman but could have saved countless other people both through Susan’s work and the health plan combined.

This is what Susan said when she made the announcement about her Cancer:

“My dreams and hard work are now becoming reality.
In early fall there will be a national announcement about the Intimate Partner Violence Institute with two major universities.

A national conference and training hosted by the Naperville Christian Church is scheduled for the first week of October on the Evidentiary Abuse Affidavit for law enforcement, prosecutors and first responders.

The Evidentiary Abuse Affidavit APP will be at the Apple Store on Monday July, 2, 2012.

Holding My Hand Through Hell will be released nationwide October 1, 2012.

Everything will still happen as scheduled”.

Susan Murphy Milano June 27 2012

Please check out these links and Google her name for more on Susan. I know you will love her as much as I do and as the countless women she has saved

Susan’s Cancer blog Conquering Cancer which she started to try to change the way society looks and Cancer treatment

Susan’s Main Blog  Susan Murphy Milano’s Journal to educate the public on Intimate Partner Violence

Document the Abuse website for the Evidentiary Abuse Affidavit 

Susan’s latest book “Holding My Hand Through Hell” is about her life and what it was like for her growing up in an abusive home.  She wrote this book for the purpose of helping others who are living the same hell that Susan grew up living in.  After reading this book people will know why Susan is the who she is.

See Susan’s other books here

Chicago Tribune article and interview with The Rev. Neil Schori.

Listen here to Rev. Schori interview after the trial of Drew Peterson

Susan Murphy Milano and her work in Chicago. Please watch this video and you will see the great work she has done in the past!

Thank you for taking the time to read this and listen to the interviews.

I would like to invite you to the Facebook prayer page for Susan. You will be in awe of the outpouring of prayers and thoughts of people whose lives were changed just by knowing her.

God Bless you and The President for all the work that has been done and is being done to make our lives better.

Sincerely,

Amy J. Matthews

Book Release, Susan Murphy-Milano – Holding My Hand Through Hell…

October 24, 2012 Comments off

Susan Murphy-Milano once again has gone over and beyond the call of duty in her most recent released book, Holding My Hand Through Hell.

Susan, a “Success Survivor” herself of victimization and a well known Advocate in the Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence arena takes you on the ride of her life.  Ladies and gentlemen……………HOLD ON! and get ready for the read that you will not be able to put down!

Susan has never been an open book.  She has seldom opened up, never allowing the women in crisis, her close friends nor others to see or hear the damning side of her life that existed from the time she could remember. 

It was nationally known that her father was a decorated detective in the Chicago Police Department.  He killed her mother and then himself after many years of dealing the many forms of abusive power at her mother, brother and herself.   Susan was hell bent that she was going to make a difference in our society and that she does.  Yes, her father was hidden behind the blue badge, everyone covered up for him and/or turned their cheek rather than to slap his ass in jail with charges that would have stuck.

Susan has made sure in her book, Holding My Hand Through Hell that no stone was left unturned.  This book is graphic and extremely detailed, but guess what…..domestic/intimate partner violence and child abuse is graphic, raw, ugly and nasty.  One never knows when it may rear it’s ugly head.  This book can be overwhelming at times but yet……there is inspiration throughout her life that is shared.

I have personally witnessed Susan in “crisis mode” with victims who reached out to her.  Susan is always twenty steps ahead of the assailant, compassionate but firm as she instructs the victim exactly what to do and how to get it done.  Keep in mind that no victim ever died on her watch.  When assisting in solving homicides she is always on target, she would sniff out the perp just like a K9.  Susan doesn’t ever back down, yes she walks the walk and most definitely talks the talk.  When a mission presents itself to Susan she immediately goes into survival mode.  Survival mode is what Susan has known all of her life all too well.  To witness her in this mode is simply breath taking.

Holding My Hand Through Hell also proves to us all that God is always present in our lives and Susan has proved this over and over.  God was with her through every trial and tribulation; God has a purpose for each and every one of us.  We may not understand at the time while in the pain but eventually when we realize the purpose we must act upon it and follow God’s plan.  

Susan’s Murphy-Milano‘s testimony proves that she never gave up on God, she could have but never turned her back on her spiritual Father.  In turn he has used her story to make a major difference in countless lives.

**********************************************************************

At this time Susan is slipping away from us after suffering from Stage IV cancer.

May you feel God’s loving embrace as He wraps His arms around you protecting and guiding you on your journey home.  Blessings my friend.  I love you.

**********************************************************************

Holding My Hand Through Hell is available at:

Ice Cube Press

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Take care and STAY SAFE!

Warning Signs of Teen Dating Violence…

October 15, 2012 1 comment

Warning signs to watch out for teen dating violence include: sudden loss of interest in activities, low grades, changes in appetite, changes in sleep patterns, loss of regular friends and drastic changes in clothing.

Often victims will wear long sleeves, long pants and scarves to hide bruises and marks. If you as a parent suspect that your teen is in an abusive relationship, encourage zero tolerance for inappropriate dating behaviors.

If you suspect that your teen is being violent to their dating partner, talk to them. Let the teen know that love is about respect. Sometimes it is difficult to realize that your child is being mean or violent. Do not allow aggressive behavior in the home. Talk to the teen about emotional abuse and how it is unacceptable in any relationship. You could say something like, “It bothers me when you yell at so-and-so.” Express concern and talk to the teen about appropriate behavior. You may even want to seek professional help for your teen.

Teen dating violence is a problem that parents can help prevent. Talk to teens about the different types of violence. Be alert for warning signs and let the teens know that you care. Most of all, show teens the appropriate way to behave by being respectful and caring towards other people.

Encouraging teens to have healthy relationships before they begin dating is important. Be aware and keep the lines of communication open with teens about their relationships.

Signs of an abusive relationship

There are many signs of an abusive relationship. The most telling sign is fear of your partner. If you feel like you have to walk on eggshells around your partner—constantly watching what you say and do in order to avoid a blow-up—chances are your relationship is unhealthy and abusive. Other signs that you may be in an abusive relationship include a partner who belittles you or tries to control you, and feelings of self-loathing, helplessness, and desperation.

To determine whether your teen relationship is abusive, ask her/him to answer the questions below. The more “yes” answers, the more likely it is that your teen may be  in an abusive relationship.

Your Inner Thoughts and Feelings

Do you:

  • feel afraid of your partner much of the time?
  • avoid certain topics out of fear of angering your partner?
  • feel that you can’t do anything right for your partner?
  • believe that you deserve to be hurt or mistreated?
  • wonder if you’re the one who is crazy?
  • feel emotionally numb or helpless?

Your Partner’s Belittling Behavior

Does your partner:

  • humiliate or yell at you?
  • criticize you and put you down?
  • treat you so badly that you’re embarrassed for your friends and family to see?
  • ignore or put down your opinions or accomplishments?
  • blame you for his/her own abusive behavior?
  • see  you a property or a sex object, rather than a person?

Your Partner’s Violent Behavior or Threats

Does your partner:

  • have a bad and unpredictable temper?
  • hurt you, or threaten to hurt or kill you?
  • threaten to commit suicide if you break up with him/her?
  • force you to have sex?
  • destroy your belongings?

Your Partner’s Controlling Behavior

Does your partner:

  • act excessively jealous and possessive?
  • control where you go and what you do?
  • keeps you from seeing your friends or family?
  • constantly checking up on you?
  • excessive texting or calling you?

If your teen is afraid for her/his safety or has been assaulted by her/his partner please dial 911 or call the National Domestic Violence Hotline, 1-800-787-3224.

Take care and STAY SAFE!

“Red, White & View” – Teen Dating Violence Discussion…

September 26, 2011 Comments off

 

VICE PRESIDENT JOSEPH R. BIDEN TO DISCUSS ISSUE OF DATING VIOLENCE AND SEXUAL ASSAULT AFFECTING TEENS AND YOUNG ADULTS, LIVE ON “THE VIEW,” TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 27

Barbara Walters and Bill Geddie, executive producers of the ABC’s Daytime Emmy® Award-winning talk show, “The View,” announced that Joseph R. Biden, the 47th Vice President of the United States, will be the special guest, live, TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 27 (11:00 a.m.-12:00 noon, ET). The Vice President will focus on the threat of dating violence and sexual assault that continues to exist for teens and young adults across the country. The Vice President’s appearance is part of “Red, White & View” continuing the show’s commitment to political guests and discussions.

The author of the landmark Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), Vice President Biden has led the effort to combat violence against women for over 20 years. He continues the cause today leading the fight from the White House.

Over the past year, in response to the high rates of violence and abuse that continue to face young women under the age of 24, Vice President Biden has refocused his long standing commitment to reducing violence against women specifically on teens and young adults. Under the Vice President’s leadership, the Administration has undertaken a wide range of new and innovative efforts to address the issue. Just last week, in a video message released via Twitter and YouTube, Vice President Biden launched the “1is2Many” project calling on high school and college-aged students to share their ideas on preventing dating violence and sexual assault at schools and on their campuses.

Dating abuse isn’t always as obvious as bruises and beatings. In fact, if you don’t know any better, some of the most common forms of relationship abuse might seem like the way that boyfriends and girlfriends are supposed to act.

That’s why it’s so important that you learn the signs of abusive relationships as soon as you start dating. If any of the signs below are true for your relationship, get help.  The following signs can be applied to abused males as well by girlfriends.  Victimization DOES NOT discriminate.

1. He Constantly Checks In on You

If your sweetie’s attentive and asks you about your life, that’s fantastic. But if he constantly calls you and expects a full report on where you’ve been and who you’ve been with, then something more sinister’s going on.

2. He Lies to You

Relationships can’t survive unless you trust each other, and if your partner abuses that trust by lying to you, it’s a relationship that isn’t worth keeping. A couple of white lies are forgivable. Lying regularly, or lying about important stuff, is absolutely not.

3. He Won’t Let You Talk to Other Guys

Don’t stand for this form of relationship abuse. You’re allowed to talk to anyone of any gender you want. If your sweetie is suspicious of something, he should have a mature conversation with you about it, but he’s not allowed to control your behavior.

4. He Threatens to Hurt Himself

When someone tells you something like, “I’ll kill myself if you break up with me,” they’re using fear and guilt to manipulate you. Any threat should be taken seriously, so speak to a parent or counselor about it. But you don’t have to play along.

5. He Loses His Temper Quickly

Everyone gets mad sometimes, and that’s okay. But if your sweetie snaps at you over the tiniest things and blames you for things that aren’t your fault, then something’s wrong (and it’s not you).

6. He Embarrasses You in Public

No one who loves you (or even likes you a lot) should ever make you feel bad about yourself. Doing it in public – by calling you names or making fun of you when other people are watching – is especially cruel, and you don’t have to stand for it.

7. He Forces You to Have Sex

Sex doesn’t just mean intercourse. It can mean a whole range of sexual activity, including oral sex or even just touching. If your partner forces you to do anything physical that you don’t want to do, get out of the relationship.

8. He Keeps You Away From Your Friends

Abusers are pretty smart. They know that if your friends found out the truth, they’d tell you to get out of the relationship lickety-split. By pushing your friends away, abusers are trying to protect themselves. Don’t let them.

9. He Looks at Your Phone

No one – not even the love of your life – has the right to monitor your calls and texts. And you’re allowed to be in contact with whomever you want (even your exes). If your sweetie disagrees, he’s trying to control you, and that’s a form of abuse.

10. He Does Anything That Scares You in Any Way

This could mean physical violence, the threat of violence, harsh words or dangerous behavior of any kind. Bottom line: if you’re scared to be around someone – even someone you love – don’t be around them any more. Break it off right away.

Take care and STAY SAFE!

 

 

Phone App Wakes Parents Up to Teen Dating Abuse via WeNews…

September 13, 2011 Comments off

Parental involvement is key to combating teen dating abuse, says Jane Randel. The Liz Claiborne Inc.’s Love Is Not Abuse campaign has created an iPhone application to educate parents on what their teens may be going through.

For the past seven years, the Liz Claiborne Inc.’s Love Is Not Abuse initiative has worked to combat and prevent teen dating abuse. One of the key insights gleaned during that time is that parental involvement and guidance are essential to preventing teen dating abuse.

We’ve also learned that there are inherent challenges to parental intervention. Although parents recognize dating abuse as a problem, many believe the issue simply does not affect their child. Many also don’t realize that technology has become a platform for abuse.

Teen dating abuse is much more prevalent than many parents think; 10 percent of U.S. high school students reported experiencing assault by a boyfriend or girlfriend in the past year, according to Adolescent Health study authors Emily Rothman, an associate professor of community health sciences at the Boston University School of Public Health, and Dr. Elizabeth Miller, division of adolescent medicine chief at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh.

And dating abuse is not only physical. Other, very common, forms of abuse include emotional and digital abuse. A recent study commissioned by Liz Claiborne Inc. found that 1-in-4 teens report being abused by a boyfriend or girlfriend through technology.

The need to engage parents is why we have created the Love Is Not Abuse iPhone application (app), an exciting new resource designed to educate parents and get them talking to their teens. The app informs parents about the warning signs of dating violence and emotional and digital dating abuse. Included are tips on how to talk to your teen about dating abuse and national resources to get help.

Various Developers

The app was developed with leading experts, researchers,

parents affected by dating abuse and partner organizations, including LoveIsRepect.org, the New York-based Joyful Heart Foundation and Break the Cycle and the National Network to End Domestic Violence, both based in Washington, D.C., among others.

When we recently launched the app, Denise DeZao, a mother of a teen dating abuse survivor, shared her experiences with teen dating abuse and explained why she believes the app is critical to educating parents about abuse.

“At the time, I did not recognize that my daughter was involved in an abusive relationship,” she said. “I now realize that the red flags were rapidly waving in front of me. When I experienced the app for the first time, I had the oddest sensation. I felt as if I could totally and completely experience how my daughter must have felt in her relationship. If resources like this app had been available to us then, I am confident that I would have acted upon the signs and intervened in the early stages of the relationship.”

Education is key to prevention. Parents must take a proactive approach and educate themselves on teen dating abuse before their teens enter relationships.

Resources are readily available in the app, and while some parents may find initial conversations uncomfortable, it is our hope that the Love Is Not Abuse app will be utilized to help prevent dating violence and wake parents up to the reality of teen dating abuse.

Jane Randel is senior vice president of corporate communications and brand services at Liz Claiborne Inc. Randel spearheads the company’s award-winning, cause marketing program, Love Is Not Abuse, to generate awareness, educate the public and ultimately prevent violence against women. She is on the National Advisory Board of the National Domestic Violence Hotline and is a member of the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape/National Sexual Violence Resource Center’s Honorary Board.

By Jane Randel, WeNews commentator.]

Teen Dating Abuse Facts:

*60% parents cannot sufficiently identify the warning signs of abuse

*1 in 4 teens report verbal, physical, emotional or sexual abuse

*1 in 5 high school girls have been physically or sexually abused by a dating partner

*Dating violence among peers is reported by 54% of high school students.

*1 in 3 teens report knowing a friend or peer who has been physically hurt by his or her partner through violent actions which included hitting, punching, kicking, slapping and/or choking

*80% of teens believe verbal abuse is a serious issue for their age group

*Nearly 80% of girls who have been victims of physical abuse in their dating relationships continue to date the abuser.

*Nearly 20% of teen girls who have been in a relationship said their boyfriend had threatened violence or self-harm in the event of a break-up.

*The majority of teen dating abuse occurs in the home of one of the partners.

Teen Dating Abuse Warning Signs:

  • Isolation: Does your daughter have fewer friends than she did before meeting her boyfriend? This speaks to the isolation that an abusive boy imposes on a girlfriend. He might isolate her first from her friends, then from her outside activities and then her family. She can then become emotionally dependent on him, and find it difficult to leave.
  • Emotional Changes: In the early infatuation stage of any relationship girls are often happy. Once the boy becomes abusive, she begins feeling sad and desperate. She may cry more or want to be alone.
  • Constant Communication: Does your daughter’s boyfriend constantly call or text her, and she must call him back immediately? He might ask her where she is, what she’s doing, who she’s with, what time she’ll be back and how many other boys she has spoken to.
  • Jealousy Issues: You might notice the boyfriend’s jealousy. If your daughter looks at or speaks casually with another boy, does he get upset? Did he tell her that he loved her early in the relationship? This is his “hook.” Your daughter might find this romantic, but it could be another red flag for jealousy and issues with control.
  • The Boyfriend’s Background: If your daughter’s boyfriend comes from a tragic home life, it could mean trouble. He might not be far behind in his parent’s footsteps if they use drugs or are abusive to him or each other.
  • The Need to Impress: When he gives her “advice” about her choice in friends, hairstyle, clothes or makeup, notice if she’s following his every word. Your daughter is likely in complete denial and may be in fear of what he will do to her if she doesn’t change.
  • Making Excuses for Him: Your daughter might stick-up for her boyfriend, defending his words and actions. Don’t let her denial force you to ignore your gut! He may have convinced her that she’s too sensitive when he calls her names or told her he’s “only kidding.”
If you keep the line of communication open with her, you’ll be able to notice more signs. For more information, call the National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline at 866-331-9474, LoveIsNotAbuse at  866.331.9474 or the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-SAFE.

Take care and STAY SAFE!

“Teach Our Teens and Save Their Lives” – Susie Kroll

July 3, 2011 1 comment

In the realm of teen dating violence, Susie promotes the concept that healthy teen dating relationships will translate into strong and healthy adult relationships. Susie strives to educate both teens and adults about the seriousness of teen dating violence.  She specializes in speaking about Teen Dating Violence and Healthy & Safe Dating.  She conducts workshops, keynotes, trainings, and seminars on issues specifically related to teens and their relationships.  Related topics to Teen Dating Violence include:

  • setting boundaries,
  • safe dates,
  • the Dating Bill of Rights,
  • Cycle of Violence,
  • early warning signs of teen dating violence,
  • teen empowerment,
  • the differences between healthy and potentially destructive dating relationships.

Because most domestic violence relationships that end in fatalities started in high school, she feels it a vital necessity to reach out to teens and work toward prevention and safety.

In the context of domestic violence, Susie aims to educate listeners on what Domestic Violence is, how the abuser uses power and control, and what tools the abuser uses to maintain their power and control.  She also discusses the myths surrounding Domestic Violence and answers the question, “Why don’t you just leave?”  Susie can combine these elements into one presentation or highlight a single topic for an in-depth presentation, keynote, or workshop.

In both Domestic Violence and Teen Dating Violence, Susie speaks with compassion, approachability, knowledge, and energy.  Her presentations are layered with a truly touching, amazing, and powerful story about “Jessica,” a friend that came into her life and ultimately survived a harrowing escape from the abuser bent on killing her.

Susie earned a BA in Speech Communication from the University of Washington.  She has spoken to a myriad of audiences on varying topics related and unrelated to Domestic Violence and Teen Dating Violence.  These topics include business communication, teaching public speaking workshops, giving scientific presentations to area junior high and high school science classes and in an academic capacity.  Most recently Susie has spent her time speaking to local high school and junior high school students and community groups about Teen Dating Violence and prevention.  She has also been a participant of Toastmaster’s International.

Over the last 6 years Susie has consulted with business owners about organization and taught seminars on effective communication and public speaking.

Susie regularly spends time helping with domestic violence related activities at Domestic Violence Services of Snohomish County and at Providence Intervention Center for Assault and Abuse.  She has had affiliations with LeTip International in the capacity of Vice President and President of her local business networking chapter.

Susie frequently volunteers with organizations that serve domestic violence victims and their families.  Currently she lends a hand with youth support groups and at her local shelter.  Susie also works with victims of sexual assault and abuse by serving as an Advocate with Providence Intervention Center for Assault and Abuse where she responds to local ER’s and provides advocacy for sexual assault victims and advocacy via a 24-hour emergency hotline.

More about Susie Kroll:

  • BA speech communication (info transfer and comm not speech therapy) from University of WA
  • BS Zoology w a marine emphasis at University of WA
  • Masters in counseling psychology (to be completed 2014).
  • Completed training as sexual assault/child sexual assault advocate from Providence Intervention Center for Assault and Abuse. Was an advocate for victims in county’s ER’s.
  • Completed training with Domestic Violence Services of Snohomish County to be a volunteer in the confidential shelter, kids support groups, and as speaker for Teen Dating Violence for the last 2 years…primarily in high school and junior high schools.
  • Participant in Toastmasters International.
  • Hobbies include spending time w husband and our 2 golden retrievers, singing, and gardening/landscaping.

Topics for Speaking Engagements, Workshops and Events:

  • Teen Dating Violence and Healthy Relationships
  • Technology, Teens, and Safety with their Cyber Reputations
  • Domestic Violence/Teen Dating Violence in Pop Culture and the Media

Links:

Susie Kroll MediaKit

Previous Speaking Engagements/Events

Connect with Susie Kroll online:

WEBSITE

BLOG:  “Teach Our Teens and Save Their Lives”

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

LINKEDIN 

Susie is also a contributing writer to the victim’s rights blog “Time’s Up!”

If you would like to schedule Susie Kroll for your next event, please fill out the form below or contact ImaginePublicity at 843.808.0859 or email contact@imaginepublicity.com

 

Take care and STAY SAFE!

Homeschool or Public High School for Courtney Alexis Stodden? (Child bride of Doug Hutchison)

June 23, 2011 4 comments

Star Jones tweeted the following, “sexual deviance is not a “preference”. I “prefer” to live in Buckingham Palace…but if I go there uninvited…they will arrest me.

“Ok, ok, let me catch you up in case you haven’t heard…Doug Anthony Hutchison, the Lost actor, 51 and minor teen, Courtney Alexis Stodden, age 16 has caused quite a stir in the media as they revealed that they were married in May in Las Vegas. I can just imagine the look on your face and what you are thinking at this moment – my head actually hurts from shaking it from side to side.

The first question that is raised is…”is this legal?” According to the marriage license page for Clark County, Las Vegas, it’s easy. Minor applicants who are 16 or 17 years old can obtain a marriage license with two things: an original or certified copy of their birth certificate, and a parent or legal guardian who will provide his or her consent. Answer: Yes.

Minor Courtney’s mom, Krista Stodden, approved of her daughter’s marriage despite the 35-year age difference and that at least one of Courtney’s parents did sign the necessary permission form. Mr. and Mrs. Stodden seem to adore Hutchison and that they are both supportive of the marriage.

So many things come to mind with this relationship/marriage; I honestly do not know where to begin. What compelled Hutchison to marry a “child”/minor or even have an interest in any way?

Doug Anthony Hutchison -

Hutchison was born May 26, 1960 (51 years old this year), known for his roles in The Green Mile, The X-Files, Lost and 24. He owns the production company, Dark Water, Inc. Hutchison’s first marriage lasted two years and is now married to minor, Courtney Stodden.

Courtney Alexis Stodden -
When Stodden was born Toy Story was all the rage in theaters, Bill Clinton was busy achieving a budget surplus, and Crystal Pepsi had just been taken off the shelves.

Star Jones hit the target as it is apparent that Hutchison definitely has sexual desires and behaviors considered to be unusual or abnormal, i.e. sexual preference is a child. And, the majority of individuals with a sexual deviation (if caught) would be in trouble with the law. A sixteen year-old teenager does not have the insight nor maturity to make a rational decision to marry nor to be seriously involved to this degree. The honeymoon phase will dissipate and then what?

As a parent, I am appalled that her parents would condone their daughter’s wishes, behavior and actually give her permission to marry or even consider dating this man. Hutchison is older than her father! The majority of parents who would do this (if caught) would be slammed with human trafficking charges. Think about it. Does anyone else see $$$$$$$$$$ in this arrangement?

It’s surprising that Courtney was required to produce her birth certificate and permission form (reminds me of field trip requirements for kids) – the majority of people are feeling that she is older than 16 by her appearance. The Officiator was on his/her toes with this ceremony.

A further note of consideration – Nevada lawmakers really need to re-think, add and move to the top of their agenda to abolish this existing law that is in place that allows minors 16 and 17 years old to wed in their state. What does it truly say about the moral’s of the lawmakers of Nevada? I know, I know….if there’s a will, there’s a way but this is truly allowing child sexual abuse to exist without any ramifications – no law to protect these kids. And, neither kids, parents or ephebophile’s (the sexual preference of adults for mid-to-late adolescents, generally ages 15 to 19; in sexual ethics it may be defined as a sexual preference for girls generally 14-16 years old and boys 14-19 years old.) need additional encouragement or avenues to assist in their deviant ways.

And, will Courtney be homeschooled or will she attend a high school near Hutchinson’s home? Or will she eventually get her GED? She is a child, perhaps outwardly mature for her age but she is only 16…..only of legal age to get a driver’s license.

Are you feeling the mix of everything that smells soooooooooo wrong in ALL ways?

Many feel that this marriage was truly for promotional purposes only and they are certainly getting the attention. For how long, only time will tell. You can listen to Courtney’s music on her website – you decide. It is understood that Courtney is a client of Hutchison’s production company, Dark Water, Inc. where she is attempting to promote a CD.

Personally, I don’t care for her music nor am I fan of Hutchison but I do care about the message that is being sent to other “kids” who may listen to her music and become fans. I am hoping that parents are tuning into their “kids” and at least are in the same chapter. Not always are we on the same page with our “kids”. It’s imperative to at least be in sync with them.

Take care and STAY SAFE!

Teens Face More Consequences from Sexting than Congressmen Do!

June 13, 2011 1 comment

U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner may not have broken any laws by texting lewd photos of himself to younger women he didn’t know.

Delaware Police are investigating allegations that Democrat Rep. Anthony Weiner may have been sexting a 17-year-old girl.

Police on Friday afternoon came to the home of a 17-year-old high school junior to ask her about direct online communications she has had with Rep. Anthony Weiner.

Two officers from the New Castle County Police Department arrived at the girl’s home around 4:30 p.m. and asked to speak with the girl’s mother about the daughter’s contact with Weiner. Another officer appeared at the home a short time later. A FoxNews.com reporter was at the home when the police arrived.

The girl, whose name is being withheld because she is a minor, told FoxNews.com, “I’m doing OK.”

The police left the home after about 30 minutes, followed by the daughter and mother, who left in a separate car. It was not clear if the mother and daughter were going to continue the conversation with police at another location.

Sources close the student said the girl followed Weiner on Twitter after seeing him speak during a school trip to Washington on April 1. Weiner, after signing on to follow the girl’s Twitter feed, direct-messaged the girl on April 13, the sources said, though it is not clear what other communication the two may have had between or after those dates.

In many states, however, teens who send pictures of themselves to their own girlfriends or boyfriends can be prosecuted for child pornography.

Allyson Pereira calls that hypocrisy. She should know. She’s spent six years dealing with the consequences of “sexting” one topless image of herself to an ex-boyfriend.

Allyson was 15 at the time, and the boy said he’d date her again if she’d send him the photo. But he was playing her. According to Allyson, he sent the private image to his entire contact list.

For the next three years at Wallkill Valley Regional High School in northern New Jersey, she was bullied and ostracized. Paint cans were thrown in her family’s pool. A tire was rolled down their driveway, smashing a glass door to the house.

“It’s actually made me stronger,” she said in an interview last with JJIE (Juvenile Justice Information Exchange), “but there were times when I really was suicidal. If it hadn’t been for my family and one or two friends, I wouldn’t be here today.”

“I can’t even tell you what it was like to live with that,” her mother says. “These kids can be so cruel to each other.”

But Allyson and her family were afraid to report the situation to police because Allyson could have been prosecuted for sending child pornography — of herself.

In an effort to protect children, both Congress and state legislatures have passed tough criminal laws designating the electronic distribution of nude images of teenagers as child pornography and often requiring those convicted of “sexting” to be registered as sex offenders. The problem is that a net thrown by the legal system to catch adults who exploit children is now more effective at ensnaring children.

Most states now require youths who send nude or semi-nude images of minors to be criminally prosecuted. Alabama, Iowa, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin are among those where teenagers as young as 13 have been prosecuted or convicted for sexting.

One of those teens was Phillip Alpert of Orlando, Fla. At 3:28 in the morning after an argument with his 16-year-old girlfriend, Phillip, who had just turned 18, sent a semi-nude image of the girlfriend to her contact list. Her parents reported his actions to the police, who descended on his house with a search warrant.

Phillip faced 72 charges of various sorts, including the possession and distribution of child pornography. He was kicked out of school and, after pleading guilty, placed on probation for three years.

Most troubling of all, he’ll be listed as a sex offender until he’s 43. In Florida, that means he must tell the state when and where he moves; he can’t live near any schools, parks or playgrounds; and his offender’s status will show up on any Internet search of his name.

Allyson, who’s now 21, met Phillip in February 2010, when the two were the focus of an MTV special, “Sexting in America: When Privates Go Public.” After three years of keeping the abuse she was suffering private (and, to be sure, after she graduated from the high school where much of that bullying was centered), the fate of two girls who’d sent pictures of themselves to boys they liked finally motivated Allyson to go public. Just as in Allyson’s case, the two girls’ photos had been forwarded to others, and the two girls became the objects of brutal teasing.

Then, in June 2008, Jesse Logan, 18, of Cincinnati, Ohio, hanged herself in her room. And in September 2009, 13-year-old Hope Witsell of Ruskin, Fla., stunned the nation by doing the same.

Since deciding to go public in early 2010, Allyson has spoken regularly to school groups about sexting and has made national media appearances. She’s a member of the “street team” for MTV’s “A Thin Line” cyber-bullying project and is at work on a book about sexting.

Along with other advocates, Allyson wants sexting among minors to be decriminalized. She says any softening of the law should apply to minors who distribute others’ images as well as those who send images of themselves.

“All it takes is for you to press ‘send’ and in a millisecond it’s out there and you can’t take it back,” she says. “[Girls] just impulsively send it. They don’t think of the consequences. And the same with the boys who are passing it on. They don’t think about how it might affect the person who’s pictured.”

Both the teens who send images of themselves and the teens who distribute them to others would benefit from counseling more than they would by being designated sex offenders, she said.

Allyson and her mother are doing everything they can to push for a bill currently before the New Jersey state legislature that would decriminalize the first conviction for sexting. New Jersey Assemblywoman Pam Lampitt, the bill’s sponsor, stresses that her legislation requires counseling rather than criminal punishment for first-time offenders.

“This is something that can go viral in seconds, so this could ruin a child’s live, and then on top of that they could be considered sex offenders,” she notes.

Lampitt’s bill has worked its way through the state Assembly, which is the New Jersey legislature’s lower chamber. Today, it’s up for consideration in a Senate committee.

Similar legislation is being considered or already have passed in other states. Lawmakers in Weiner’s home state of New York are considering a bill that would give judges the discretion to divert teen sexters to an “educational reform program.”

In Florida, where so many of the most sensational incidents happen to have occurred, this year’s Legislature passed a bill that will decriminalize the first sexting offense by a minor, making it punishable by up to eight hours of community service and a $60 fine. The second incident would be a misdemeanor.

It’s unclear whether the Florida legislation, which takes affect in October, will save from criminal charges the two latest Florida kids to be charged with sexting.

Last week, in Hernando Beach, Fla., the family of a 15-year-old boy reported to police that their son had been threatened by another student. The 15-year-old boy’s girlfriend had sent an image of herself to him. A second boy saw the girl’s image on the other person’s phone, and threatened the 15-year-old boy, according to an affidavit.

But when the family of the 15-year-old boy reported the threat and provided police with a flash card containing the image, police didn’t charge the boy who allegedly threatened their son. They arrested the 15-year-old and his girlfriend.

That’s the kind of case where Allyson Pereira sees hypocrisy. While adult celebrities cast images of themselves all across the Internet, teenagers who show the same poor judgment can be charged with a crime.

“If you look at Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton, they can do these things and get away with it,” Allyson said, referring to two celebrities who’ve boosted their careers by sending out lewd images of themselves. “And kids think they can do it and it’s cool. And then they do it, and they can get arrested.

SIMPLY….. DON’T BE A PART OF SEXTING NO MATTER HOW OLD YOU ARE.

Take care and STAY SAFE!

 

 

 

Partial Contributor: Ken Edelstein, JJIE

Victims speak about teen-dating violence

February 25, 2011 3 comments

Johanna Orozco, of Cleveland, a victim of teenage violence, spoke to a crowd of local counselors, teachers and teens at the YWCA on North Park Avenue in Warren. Orozco’s ex-boyfriend shot her in the face in 2007.

A state law signed last year by then-Gov. Ted Strickland and sponsored by former state Rep. Sandra Stabile Harwood of Niles mandated that public schools begin to teach students in grades seven-12 about teen-dating violence starting this school year.

Implementation of the law, known as The Tina Croucher Act, hasn’t gone perfectly, said Cheryl Tarantino, executive director of the Warren domestic-violence shelter Someplace Safe.

Because the Legislature didn’t provide any funding to carry it out and because the law didn’t specify what kind of education is required, some schools are doing almost nothing, Tarantino said.

On Thursday, Someplace Safe and the 13 other Northeast Ohio organizations concerned about dating violence brought three of Ohio’s best-known teen-violence experts to the YWCA on North Park Avenue to train local counselors, teachers and teens on the subject.

Johanna Orozco of Cleveland may be the best living example of the consequences of teen-dating violence.

When Orozco, 22, first stepped to the microphone, it was apparent why people listen to her.

Not only is her face disfigured from a shotgun blast she suffered in 2007 when her ex-boyfriend shot her at close range, but she speaks in a dynamic way and relates to teens.

Orozco’s story, which has been told numerous times on national television and in a seven-day series in the Cleveland Plain Dealer, was that she was the victim of a tall, dark, handsome, intelligent and violent teen named Juan Ruiz Jr., Orozco’s boyfriend of two years.

Orozco had known Ruiz since the second grade. They started dating in early 2005, when Orozco was a sophomore in high school. Ruiz shot Orozco in March 2007.

The court sentenced Ruiz to 27 years in prison in September 2007 after he pleaded guilty to raping and attempting to kill Orozco. Ruiz was 17 at the time.

But during her talk Thursday, Orozco pointed out that her relationship with Ruiz was anything but violent in the beginning.

Four to five months into the relationship, Ruiz became jealous and started to tell Orozco what she could wear and who she could talk to. He accused her of cheating and began to call her every three to five minutes on the phone.

Her friends and family noticed that she had changed — becoming isolated from them. She lied about the reasons why.

A year into the relationship, Ruiz hit her for the first time, so she broke up with him, only to change her mind a short time later.

The relationship got worse over the following year — slapping, squeezing and hitting her in places where others wouldn’t notice. She continued to lie to friends and family about the source of the injuries because “I loved him. I cared about him,” she said. Eventually, she also feared him.

About a month before Ruiz shot her, she left him, but Ruiz found her and raped her at knifepoint, which she reported to someone at school, which led to juvenile charges being filed against Ruiz.

Ruiz was let out of juvenile custody on house arrest and stalked Orozco for two weeks before shooting her as she sat in her car.

The blast removed half of her lower face. Bone from her leg was used to rebuild her jaw.

The other speakers were Elsa and Jim Croucher of Monroe, near Cincinnati, the parents of Tina Croucher, who was killed by an ex-boyfriend in 1992.

Elsa Croucher said her daughter’s boyfriend was a good-looking football player who regularly hit her daughter, leaving bruises.

Tina Croucher lied about how she got the bruises, but eventually her family found out, and Tina stopped seeing him.

“Then he really caused problems,” Elsa said, describing “horrible messages” that he left on voice mails, and times he went to the family’s church and to Elsa’s workplace.

“Four days before Christmas, he shot her in the head and killed himself in her room,” Elsa said.

The Crouchers were instrumental in getting the Legislature to pass The Tina Croucher Act.

 

Published: Fri, February 25, 2011 @ 12:06 a.m.

By: Ed Runyan

WARREN

Vindy.com

Photo by: Robert K Yosay

Take care and STAY SAFE!

R-E-S-P-E-C-T, Teen Dating Violence: Education

February 24, 2011 1 comment

One way to decrease the chances of teens being in an abusive relationship is to encourage kids to love themselves. Show teens respect. Let them know that it is important for other people to respect them as well. If siblings are disrespecting one another, bring attention to the behavior and try to stop it. Encouraging teens to respect family members, friends and others will help them to demand respect in their dating and personal relationships.

As hard as we try to talk to our teens, they will not always feel comfortable telling us when something is wrong. Look up local hotline numbers for teens. Make a list and give it to your child. Also, have a list taped to the refrigerator and the back of the teen’s bathroom door. Let the teen know that the numbers are available if they ever need them. This way, the hotline numbers will be accessible to your teen should they become involved in an abusive relationship. The teen hotline numbers can be a valuable tool in helping teens in a time of crisis.

Victims of teen dating violence often feel as though they deserve the abuse or that they will not be able to find anyone else if they break up with their abusive partner. They may have low self esteem or fail to recognize emotional abuse and think that it is perfectly normal. Remind your teen that they deserve respect in their relationships. It is important to emphasize to teens that they will have several relationships where they think they are in love and have found a special person. Explain to your teen that they are young and that they will have many opportunities to date.

Safety issues are a main concern. Aggression and anger can lead to serious intentional or accidental injuries. If the teen has unexplained bruises or marks, talk to them about what you suspect is going on in their relationship. You do not have to confront them with questions. Just talk to them about healthy dating relationships. This lets the teen know that you are available and concerned without putting the teen on the defensive. If the teen feels that they have to defend their relationship, they are less likely to break up with the violent partner.

Take care and STAY SAFE!

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