Happy New Year!
Hi, this is Jennifer. This is my update for January 2010.
I’m back! No… not in the United States but definitely dedicated to the cause of finding justice for abused children in the family court system.
It has been a year since my last update when I decided to take a year to figure out what I was going to do next. I worked on a Domestic Violence by Proxy project with Dr. Joyana Silberg, Leadership Council and Dara Carlin, Breaking the Silence. (My article is attached.) I am currently finishing up a year long investigation of Glenn Sacks and his connection to my abusive father. I have a 5 part series which is about ready for publication. I know that many of you cannot understand why I am wasting my time challenging this insignificant columnist but he is an extension of my father’s abuse and I will not allow my father to continue to abuse us by proxy (via Glenn Sacks.)
Since our story came out and all charges against my mother have been dropped, the Dutch government has upheld their asylum order and we have now been allotted even more rights. Because we refused to denounce the United States things were more difficult then they needed to be. (The Dutch government is trying to push for mandatory neutralization for asylum recipients.) That has been quite an emotional battle. Even though the legal justice system in the States failed us, we are still proud to be Americans!
We were finally allowed to move out of the projects! It is such a relief! Our new house is in the town where my little brothers and sisters go to school. They do not have a school bus program here in Holland and it is expected that bicycles are the standard means of transportation, even in the winter with snow on the ground. My mother had to bike the kids to school and back several miles each way to the next town to make sure we were in a good school system. She still has to bike about 10 miles a day but she thinks that a good education is so important. My younger brother is going to the same international school that I went to. I can’t believe that he is already 16. The Dutch Government and the European Council agreed that the Hague Treaty clearly states that my little brother has the right for protection in the Netherlands. They have refused to return him to the United States and we finally have peace. We have accepted that we must remain in the Netherlands for 1 ½ more years until he turns 18 and is legally free from the American family court system.
I am back at University and live in a student dorm. I am only a 30 minute bike ride away from the new house and I go home regularly for a good home cooked meal! I enjoyed my psychology studies and now I really love pedagogy. I will continue to further my education while we are waiting out of stay in exile. As soon as my little brother is 18 I am determined to return to the United States and change the laws which puts vulnerable children in the hands of their abusers. Children need to be protected in every state. Minnesota is first on my list!
My next update will be in April.
(Here is a photo from our celebration at Euro - Disney.)