Ginny and Georgia

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Netflix has set the bar high with Ginny and Georgia. I first started viewing the series Ginny and Georgia last night. For anyone with daughters struggling to fit in, this show is for you. It showcases how teens deal with coming into their sexuality and how little things make the difference in how they see themselves.

We get to know Georgia’s teenage daughter Ginny, who is struggling with overcoming insecurities as growing up being two races. As a mother of three biracial daughters, I can tell you the struggle is spot on. My 15-year-old has hair like Genny’s, and if you let her tell it, her hair is her worst enemy. It is very curly and too silky to keep braids. We have tried everything, but nothing helps when it comes to getting rid of the curls. We have flattened it only to see it curl back un in a day or two.

In the past, we would tease that she was just unlucky and got the in-between hair. After watching the show, I feel like those comments might have aided in her not liking herself. At one point, Ginny, who self mutilates just like my daughter did, talks about the struggle of how she doesn’t feel like she belongs to any race. She had a hard time fitting in with black people because she was too light. Yet, she couldn’t do things like wear make-up or wear certain hairstyles like white people because she was too dark. Fitting in is so important to children, after my daughter ripped her arm to shreds we put her in a self empowerment group. She just stated over and over that she didn’t feel pretty, she often talked about not fitting in. She felt separated by not only her appearance but her music.

So, as I am looking at this show, I couldn’t help but think back to all remarks Alison made regarding her hair ordeal. She would say something like I love their hair, I wish my hair was like that, or I wish my hair could at least get braided. Yet, she could never point out anything good about herself. Of course, I tried to remind her that she had great hair and that she should be happy that she would never need a perm. I grew up having to get perms and get my hair pressed which, can be nightmares. So, I didn’t feel too sympathetic to her remarks about having a different grade of hair because I didn’t understand the real issue.

I was minimizing her feelings about being pretty or not feeling happy. I think as parents, we sometimes want to put a bandage on things, but there are some issues we cannot speak on. When we were dealing with Alison cutting, I remember having daily conversations on how she felt about herself; it always ended with me trying to reassure her that she was perfect. Yet, perhaps those weren’t the words she needed to hear.

She was struggling with her identity, and it started with hair and flowed, all the way to sexuality. I finally told her about a year ago that people do their best when they no longer live by adopting labels. Labels are dangerous and often more confining than any box. This show is an excellent pick for people with children who are going through an identity crisis. I just couldn’t help but feel like Ginny was my Ally. The things she talked about in the essay/poem she read in her class, sounded so familiar. I felt like they read my daughter’s life out loud.

Not only does this series show the struggle of children, but it also shows the extremes of a single parent who will stop at nothing to make sure her kids are safe. In most cases, we would die for our children. I do not want to give away spoilers, but I get Georgia, and I can get behind some of the choices she made. She did the best she could with the deck of cards she was handed.

Did The Government Help To Create A New Breed Of Troubled Kids?

Why didn’t we have school shootings and massive bullying when we were younger? It is mainly because of one word and it begins with the letter P and ends with the letter S. PARENTS! We talk about guns and mental health a lot in this country. However, I haven’t heard people talking about the lack of discipline in our country because of fear. When we allowed the government to come into our houses and take on the position as the silent parent, we opened the door for disruption.

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Some of you might find it ironic as hell that I am taking this position, but there’s a reason behind it. When I was in the academy for investigator training, one of the first things we learned was that the majority of CPS cases would be fictitious. I didn’t want to believe it because surely 85 percent of cases couldn’t really be just parents, trying to be parents. However, after I graduated the academy and cases started coming in, I soon learned the dark side of reporting.

While a handful of my cases were actual abuse, the majority of my cases were not abuse. Many of them were cases with teens or preteens who were out of control. Some of the children were so out of control that their parents could no longer afford to take care of them. In many ways, we have the government to thank for this epidemic. Parents are scared to parent because anything and everything can be used against them when it comes to reporting.

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We are talking about in some cases parents raising their voices, spanking, removing doors, and talking to children about their weight issues, these are some of the things that parents did to get CPS called on them which always resulted in Rule Outs. The calls would come from clinics, schools, family members, or people involved in custody fights.

A single mother was using a provider for her newborn and she didn’t feel like the doctor was really showing the level of concern that she needed, so she switched providers. The clinic called in a case on the new mom with a load of lies which were easily picked apart due to records. I have always and will always say CPS needs a new screening method. The current method does more harm than good. If you have a reporting system that lets retaliatory accusations flourish then you have a broken system.

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There needs to be some form of punishment for false accusations because there are too many false allegations that result in stagnated parenting. Good parents become fearful of future calls and stop reinforcing rules out of fear of future CPS interactions. This fear then spreads to family members and friends which later interrupts how the family is able to parent. Keep in mind in order to close cases investigators must contact references even if the case happens to be fictitious. Thus spreading fear of how and what parents can do to parent their children.

Enter in the wayward child that we see today. Parents cannot parent due to fear of the government and the government is not equipped to take on the full responsibility of parenting all the children they have helped corrupt. So people reach for medication or therapy when perhaps the only thing they needed in the first place was the ability to parent their children without the fear of the government.

My Daughter’s Encounter With The Police

I’ve been struggling with something lately. This past weekend my daughter walked to the store which isn’t very far from our house. She informed us that on the way to the store a cop slowed down to a near crawl and drove beside her. She then stated that it made her nervous so the turned around and walked the other way. The policeman then turned around and proceeded to follow her in that direction as well.

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Due to the cop making her nervous she decided to go to another store which ended up being a little closer than the first store she planned on visiting. As she entered the store, the cop drove away. We have had talks about staying away from trouble. She does a good job of it, to be honest. She doesn’t really go anywhere with anyone. We have covered the basics, even warned her about staying away from hoodies which is something she had on last weekend. She hates the sun! I’m feeling kind of confused and stressed about the policeman following my daughter, to be honest. I never thought I would have to explain the dangers of being a minority female on foot. We tell her to watch out for strangers, watch out for people who look jittery, but we haven’t had to talk to her about watching out for cops.

I used to bake cupcakes and bring our cops back in Garland treats to help show our appreciation. Hell, I would even go to Taco Bell and grab food just to take it to patrol cars to show how much we cared. I’m scared because the atmosphere is changing and in many ways it has changed. I told my daughter something totally different this weekend when we talked about the encounter with the officer. I told her to be careful, face the officer, and smile if he follows you. Then I started thinking about what I was saying. Why was some officer following my daughter around and is she safe here in this small town, we call home?

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Just what do we tell our children about interactions with the police?

How Are You Rating Your Quality Time

Families are made up of so many different things. With each family comes a set of unique illustrations that paint that family’s life from within. Trauma seems to add new details and sections to the dynamics which can ultimately alter how families are able to coexist among each other. It is at the end of the school year, and we have come to the conclusion that we are still dealing with the tremors of trauma from five years ago.

If the event would have been an earthquake, you would have expected to see small tremors that popped up some years ago. However, it seems as though the tremors are harmonic in nature and ever reaching. We were finally able to have a real heart to heart with our 13 year old. Yes, I said the 13 year old. She was 8 when her sister was attacked and my oldest was 16. In many ways we focused so much and so hard on the recovery process for one child that we nearly lost the other two.

My eldest has been living in Florida for nearly six months now. It makes me sad to write this because I don’t know how much I missed when it comes to being there for the 13 year old. For the past five years while I was trying to save one daughter, I was slowly letting the other two drift away. After having a real heart to heart, my baby finally opened up and told me how she felt.

She informed me that there were nights that she would just lay in her room crying because she felt like we didn’t see her. No parent ever wants to hear that, you do not want to hear that you were a shit parent. I think I did what my parents did in many ways. I tried to bring in things to make up for not being there. We had the season tickets to Six Flags, great hiking adventures, and even trips to craters. We were really trying to meet that quality time quota that so many of us play towards.

Now, we are looking at quality time in a much different way. It’s about those trips to markets that result in instant bright face appreciation as well as those moments of tenderness because some boy has broken her heart. It’s about telling her how much we love her each and every night and telling her no matter the outcome, she will overcome. In my mind, I still see her as

this little one. This picture was taken on some random day at the park. We decided to ditch the normal routine after school and have a play date. Don’t make the mistake that we made and think that quality time has to be something like below.

Hiking in the mountains.

Going to ballet.

Mining in dormant volcanoes.

It can be anything as simple as just watching your kids walk ahead of you at the park. If you are anything like my family, you are still trying to work out the kinks. We are moving in a better direction, but that direction now comes with open eyes. It’s not always easy after you take off the rose colored glasses, but it’s something that you can’t ignore. Don’t miss those moments.