It's ironic that it is Easter Sunday today. This Easter Sunday marks the fifth anniversary of when my then-minor children departed from my life forever. I remember my father ironically remarking to me once that it was on Easter Sunday in 1945 that he waded ashore as a 20-year old into a three month crucible of horrific combat on Okinawa.
I dropped them off after our weekend together five years ago as usual. I had full joint legal custody and standard visitation, acquired after a circus of a two-day custody trial during which "they" faxed a letter to the judge's chambers from Sharon Rogers' house in Arlington stating their visitation preferences, which I guess was to never visit. This sort of parental manipulation--some call it child abuse--by the primary caregiver aimed at turning the children against the other parent is called Parental Alienation Syndrome, or PAS. Practically everyone it hasn't happened to disputes its existence or ignores it.
The following week the judge threw out a "harassment" suit wherein she had used our three minor children as her stalking horse by having "them" sue me over a supposed fiduciary matter. She was ultimately sanctioned and assessed costs of almost $50,000. The lawyers who signed the pleadings and conducted the hearings that led to this outcome for her were Joseph A. Condo (past president of the Virginia bar!) of McLean and William B. Reichhardt of Fairfax.
The Mother and these divorce lawyers "won" though, because the family was irrevocably torn apart, predictably so in my opinion. The children never visited me again after "their" suit was tossed after a full evidentiary hearing, and I have had a nugatory influence on their upbringing since that day. In effect, I haven't spoken to them or seen them since then. I wouldn't recognize any of them if I passed by them on the sidewalk. I don't want your sympathy, I just want you to know that this pernicious extra-judicial family-killer of PAS exists and is practiced in this country. For men, here and here are some resources on where to get support. It's Easter Sunday and I'm going out on for a run. Running allows me to get a new start every day.