What if it were your kids going to that school too ?
Frank Comment on Karla Homolka
By Frank Kermit MA
April 27, 2016, updated on April 18, 2018
When the news story broke in 2016 that Karla Homolka was found to be living in Chateauguay, Quebec, with a legally changed name, married with 3 young children and thus was regularly on the grounds of an elementary school where she took two of her oldest, I started to think.
One of my first thoughts was did her new husband know of her past before he had children with her, or was that information hidden from him and he was duped? After all, given the fact that she is a convicted serial killer who helped target her own younger sister, along with two other teenage girls, that simply cannot be something a person could easily overlook while falling in love.
As it turns out, her husband is the brother of her lawyer, and I would personally assume he knows even more details about what happened than the public does. Maybe I am wrong.
Another question I had was whether or not the news media did any disservice to her children by revealing the exact house they live in. Although the young kids are not responsible for the sins of their mother, would these very young children now be the targets of school bullies as well as any adults in and around the school who may take on the mantle of social justice, to justify abusive actions against these children that happen to be just as innocent as Homolka’s original victims?
Even if other school children, the school staff, and the parents of the other children in the school make it a point not to target those little kids, could revealing the exact location of the home in that neighborhood, ignite an individual vigilante who seeks to make more innocent children suffer in an effort to appease social justice’s call of an-eye-for-an-eye?
But the final question I had was what if it was my child was going to school with the children of a convicted serial killer?
I thought about this question the most. What would I do? It seems that after serving her sentence there is no legal action that can be taken to force her to remove her children from that school, and I do not know if isolating her children is an answer I would be comfortable with. Again, I would not want to punish the children for the actions of a parent.
One of the thoughts that came to my mind is that my kids could already be going to school with the children of convicted criminals and I simply do not know it. Just because it does not appear on the news media does not mean it does not exist.
The fact is, we really do not intimately know our neighbors, and that includes the neighbors we actually do know.
Every family has secrets they do not share with the neighbors.
So where does that leave us with what to do, when you are concerned for the safety and well being of your children?
Many years ago, on our first date my wife and I talked about a hypothetical situation of what we would do if it turned out one of our children was being so severely bullied at school that it started to affect their mental health. We both agreed that we would take every measure possible to protect our children including modifying our day-to-day work lifestyles and make whatever sacrifices were necessary to pull our child out of a brick-and-mortar school where our child was being victimized, and simply do whatever it took to home-school our kids.
As we may not legally be able to expel the other kids who torment our children, we always have a choice about whether or not we send our children to a school in order to meet the educational requirements of the government.
That conversation with my wife was one of the reasons I knew I was going to marry her, as we both felt very strongly about protecting our children and we both had the same vision of how we wanted to parent.
So, I guess that is what I would do.
From what I gather in the media follow-up stories, neither the school, nor the government is forced to remove Homolka’s children from any elementary school regardless of her criminal past.
It has nothing to do with rehabilitation, as it seems it has to do more with the deal she and her lawyers struck with the prosecution, and the fact that she completed her 12-year sentence.
Again, maybe I am wrong.
What I do feel confident in stating, is that if it were my children in the position of so many other kids going to school where I did not feel my kids were extra safe I might very well put the home-school plan into action.
According to http://thecanadianhomeschooler.com/canadian-homeschool-laws-quebec/, a student who receives home schooling and benefits from an education experience which according to an evaluation made by or for the school are equivalent to what is provided at school, are exempt from compulsory school attendance.
For more information about home-schooling and how to transition your child from going to a brick-and-mortar school, to schooling your own kids at home, please contact the Home School Legal Defense Association http://www.hslda.ca/
I really do not mean to offend anyone with this article.
I just see people being very concerned about what they should do, and before anyone takes any actions they are going to later regret or feel terrible about, I thought it would be wise to at least cover other options that are available.
I wish you all peace and healing.
From Lovers To Friends
By Frank Kermit
April 27, 2016, Updated on March 1, 2018
Most of the time, I get asked by clients how to go from being just friends with someone, to actually dating them. In fact, it is so popular a question that I have written a book: 'From Friends To Lovers: Stop Being Her Emotional Cookie Man' and have recorded a 2-hour MP3 lecture on the subject.
Occasionally however, I do get the reverse. A person that asks how to stop being lovers, but still stay friends?
This can be somewhat challenging as the nature of going from lovers to just friends, is very dependent on the kind of sexual relationship that existed previously.
If the two of you were just casual lovers or friends-with-benefits, and there was never any expectation of things getting into a more serious commitment, then transitioning from lovers to friends might be a simpler process.
If the two of you were dating more seriously with the hopes of it becoming a committed long term relationship, staying friends after ending your sexual involvement may not even be a good idea, depending on how attached or hurt one or both of you are after the break up.
There are times, when going from lovers to friends may require a period of no-contact, to help with personal healing and breaking attachment patterns.
So, becoming friends may still happen, but likely only after a period of not being actual friends, but still remaining on “friendly” terms. (Usually this means that although someone is hurt or feeling rejected, they do not resort to attacks on your character just because of the break up).
The best way to manage becoming friends after being lovers is to manage the friendship from before you become lovers in the first place. If you make it clear between both parties before starting a physical relationship, that there is no desire or expectation of something more serious later on, it will be easier to remain friends afterwards.
Part of managing those expectations is to also make it clear to both partners that this arrangement is a time limited involvement. You start off by being clear this can and will end at any time.
Even in cases where someone develops feelings for the other, it is still easier to remain friends in the long run, if you are both honest about the meaning (or lack thereof as the case may be) your sexual relationship actually has.
If you are in a more committed relationship and you want to stop being lovers and demote each other back to friends (sounds kind of harsh doesn’t it?), the best way to break up is to focus on all the reasons you are both incompatible for a future long term relationship.
If your long term plans are in conflict (for example, one of you wants to raise a family in the country, while the other wants to live in the city), then using that as a basis for ending the relationship has the greatest chances of salvaging a friendship after sex.
Simply acting on a lack of attraction, or feelings lost will not garner feelings of friendship. Yes, losing those honeymoon phase feelings does happen, even in the best of couples and lovers, but that alone does not have to mean the end of being lovers (as many successful long term couples will attest too).
Even the best of connections can hit an attraction slump on the road of pleasure.
If you stop being lovers because of your long-term incompatibilities, and not based on your moment-to-moment feelings, there are less hurt feelings, less feelings of rejection, and a lot more understanding.
Even if you aren’t able to become the best of friends, at the very least, you are more likely to end up on “friendly-enough” terms. In an age of social media, that is a grand option.
When it's All About Attention
By Frank Kermit
April 26, 2016, updated on April 18, 2018
Attention does not equal love.
Attention does mean you get noticed more, however, even if the entire room notices you, that still does not guarantee that you will earn love that way.
In fact, depending on how you attempt to acquire that attention could get you the kind of attention where everyone wants to know about you, but no one wants to get to know you personally.
One of the issues I see in my coaching practice is trying to explain to some people that their attention seeking behaviors are hampering their initiatives to find love.
For example, when writing an online dating profile, trying to be too general so that you potentially attract the maximum amount of attention may get you more first dates, but will cause you to end up more alone in the long term.
When writing an online profile to be more specific to your realistic (not fantasy ideal) needs, you will likely attract less attention, but of the attention it does attract, it creates the best possible odds to find a legitimate connection.
Trying to get lots of attention from everyone, means you are potentially going to get less attention from the very individuals that could be your greatest loves.
Attention is not a bad thing.
Attention can be a great thing if it is the kind of attention that supports you, encourages you, empowers you, and brings you up.
Good attention can do those things, such as bringing attention to a great work you have done, or a strong endeavor that you are behind that is trying to get off the ground, or even getting attention as a means of appreciation for your good deeds.
Attention can also be a means of self-sabotage, when a person seeks attention so desperately, they are willing to settle for bad attention instead of no attention.
For example, the teenager who is neglected at home and not getting enough good forms of attention to the point of feeling ignored (no attention) may start acting out in destructive ways to get bad attention (attention to misdeeds).
It can be important to take a moment and ask yourself about what type of attention you are currently seeking?
Are you seeking good attention that will attract the kinds of people in your life to move you forward?
Are you seeking bad attention, just for the sake of getting any attention, regardless of the consequences?
Are you trying to keep yourself hidden away so that you are able to avoid attention, and reject any of the attention that you may get through happenstance?
Are you trying to get all the attention possible and hoping that by increasing the amount of attention you get, you also increase your chances of getting something at all?
Put your focus, not on getting all the attention you can in general, but rather, on getting the particular attention of those individuals that make all the work you put into attention getting worth it.
Sabotage Between Friends
By Frank Kermit
April 8, 2016, updated on April 19, 2018
From what I have observed in my practice over the last 15 years, one of the most consistent external factors that will keep a person single, are the friends of that person.
I have seen so many people experience sabotage from their friends; specific actions that those friends took, that directly resulted in someone ending up single.
Here are some examples I have encountered over the years.
A young man feels his best male friend is spending too much time with his new girlfriend, so he manipulates their social circle to put pressure on his best male friend to break up with her, by claiming she is changing him when she is not.
A married woman is being coaxed by her recently divorced friends to come out to a club for a girls-night-out, and actively encourage her to cheat on her husband by pushing her to occupy the attention of the odd-man-out of the circle of males that have shown interest in the group of girls, in a subconscious attempt to have her lose her marriage and rejoin her girlfriends in the single world.
A man meets a new girl that he really likes and wants to date, but his friends all tell him he could do so much better than her, and his need for their approval costs him what could have been a very compatible partner, when they just do not want to lose their drinking buddy.
A girl jealous of all the male attention that her friend is getting from having lost weight starts to spread rumors that are designed to turn the guys off, and keep the guys focused on herself for more titillating information.
This is just a small sample of what actually happens.
Just to be clear, for the purposes of this article, jealousy is the feeling when someone feels threatened of losing something they feel they already have.
It does not matter if it is a real threat (like someone writing love letters to your partner and demanding that your partner leaves you), or if the threat is imaginary (you assume your partner is cheating when there is no evidence to support that theory and in fact your partner is faithful). Whether the threat is real or fantasy, the effects on your nervous system is still the same.
This is different from envy (which your friends can experience as well). Envy is when a person does NOT have something that someone else does have, and covets it.
A true friend is someone that wants to see you happy. Even if that happiness means you will be spending more time doing the things you love, and spending more time with a serious romantic partner, and less time with your friend.
If you are searching for love, it is best to keep in mind that your future long-term romantic partner is likely to replace your best friend if you seek to make a long-term relationship successful.
A true friend is OK with this.
Putting anyone, ahead of your life partner and children, even if that person has been your best friend since forever, is a predictor that the relationship will eventually end.
Friendship is important. It is just as important to know at what point you are not willing to have your long term happiness and success be sabotaged all in the name of maintaining a friendship.
Give a piece of your heart to your closest friend, but never to the point where that piece of your heart will cost you peace of mind for your future.
Dr. Laurie Betito Quotes