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Family Law: A Psychopaths Playground for Legally Sanctioned Abuse

As a young child, my parents always called me the “party police”.  I was the good girl who never liked to see people breaking the rules.  I never smoked, never drank underage, never did drugs, and never stole anything.  I grew up believing in justice and always believed that the courts and the police would protect me if and when I needed them.  That belief ended when I entered a custody war with Luc (my psychopath ex).

Going through a custody war with a sociopath will change the way you view the justice system.  In fact, most of my time in court with Luc felt more like an “injustice” system than anything that resembled justice.  The painful lessons I learned about how our system works rocked me to my core.

As a parent who is madly in love with her baby boy (which most parents are), my maternal instincts were telling me to fight this man with everything I had.  That being said, the very nature of our courts and what was happening throughout the trial felt like it was taking my stress to new levels.  As I became weaker emotionally, Luc became stronger.  He would file ridiculous motions to drive up my bills, sling as much mud at the walls of the court hoping that something would stick, and always find lawyers willing to represent him for free (or believing he would someday pay them back) and psychologists to make excuses for his immoral and criminal behavior.

Legal Abuse Syndrome and PTSD

Shortly after I fled Luc’s house with my son, my therapist diagnosed me with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).  He then explained to me that he believed I had something called “Legal Abuse Syndrome”.  I had never heard this term so I looked it up on Wikipedia and learned that Legal abuse refers to abuses associated with both civil and criminal legal action.  This abuse can originate from all parts of the legal system to include frivolous and vexatious litigants, abuses by law enforcement, incompetent, careless or corrupt attorneys and misconduct from the judiciary itself.  Legal abuse is a personal injury that develops in individuals assaulted by ethical violations, legal abuses, betrayals, and fraud. Abuse of power and authority and a profound lack of accountability in our courts have become rampant.

Sociopaths and legal abuse

From what I have learned through both my independent research and my experiences, sociopaths enjoy chaos.  They like to inflict pain on their victims in a way that appears sadistic.  These individuals seem to flourish in Family Courts because its legally sanctioned abuse.  I fled Luc’s house with my newborn son just weeks after baby boy was born.  Even though I filed for custody a few days after leaving, Luc waited three months before he responded to my motion for custody.  During those three months I didn’t hear anything from Luc about my son – not a text, a phone call, an email – nothing.  So why did he wait so long?  He wanted to wait until the day when he believed he would inflict as much pain as possible.  He officially filed a response to the motion on my birthday.

Luc came into my life and completely destroyed my belief in law and order.  One of the most painful lessons that I had to learn throughout my court battle with Luc was that psychopaths don’t play by normal rules.  This is true in their lives and it is certainly the case in the courtroom.  The most disturbing part about this was that Luc would get away with many of his lies because it would come down to my word against his.  He knew how to play the game and what he could get away with.  It was hard for me, at first, to anticipate his next move and prepare myself for the chaos.  Laws are not always enforced and true criminals are experts at figuring out which laws they can break and which are so hard to prove that no prosecutor will bother taking the case.  Psychopaths have a reckless disregard for the law and this allows them to play the system against us.

Overcoming Legal Abuse Syndrome and “The Death of Justice”

I still struggle with panic attacks when I think of all the things Luc has been able to do to me through the legal system and what he is capable of doing next.  Sometimes it feels like Luc has stabbed me right outside of a Police Station.  Instead of arresting Luc, the police rush to put me in handcuffs and arrest me for bleeding on Luc’s boots. (While apologizing to him and letting him know that they will make me buy him a new pair of shoes)

Justice as I knew it is dead and along with it went my youth and the naive version of myself.  The small piece of little girl cappuccino queen I have left inside of me is storming around and throwing a huge fit.  She is screaming and crying and stomping her feet.  Grown up cappuccino queen, however, is constantly thinking of ways to protect her son while trying to quiet the little girl inside who is throwing a royal tantrum over the death of justice.  

In my darkest moments of despair, however, I keep fighting.  I fight because I have to and because I have no other choice.  I am baby boy’s mom, I am his only healthy parent, and I love him.

In the brave words of Martin Luther King Jr.,

 “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”

83 Comments

  1. Dr. Karin Huffer on September 3, 2012 at 2:57 pm

    In 2008 a new law was passed, the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act ADAAA. When it went into effect in 2009, it has given those suffering from PTSD and other invisible disabilities protection from many legal abuses. Now, there are federal mandates in place that, with assistance, the person with legal abuse syndrome can resist the coercive attacks from their opponents and often change the legal game.
    Dr. Karin Huffer
    Author – Overcoming the Devastation of Legal Abuse Syndrome (1995)
    and Unlocking Justice: The Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act Protecting Persons with Invisible Disabilities.(2012)

    • cappuccinoqueen on September 3, 2012 at 10:10 pm

      Thank you for your comment Dr. Huffer. I would love to learn about these protections that you are speaking about. Litigation appears to be Luc’s favorite sport. He was actually able to find a psychologist who completely ignored his prior psych evals, the custody evaluation, his criminal history, and the testimony of repeated abuse. This same psychologist suggested to the court that I should be tested for my fitness as a parent due to my diagnosis of PTSD (even though Luc caused this). She turned into his mouthpiece and completely disregarded her professional obligations. For some reason, Luc seems to keep finding people who will represent him pro bono (or maybe he is just not paying his attorney). When he tries to take me back to court (which I believe is inevitable), is there any assistance I can get then?

      • Lin on July 30, 2017 at 10:35 pm

        There are so many crooked psychologists out there who will do anything for money. The judge in our case ordered a psych eval on both of us and my ex’s attorney and the guardian ad litem colluded by calling the evaluator during the exam and their words went into the report as fact! She actually said I had bipolar disorder, a personality disorder and paranoid schizophrenia. And did I mention I can’t get a copy of this psych eval that I paid for and could only read it in the my attorney’s office. Then they give my ex full custody without him having a psych eval done himself. Family court is so corrupt.

      • S on November 15, 2018 at 9:11 am

        cappucinoqueen, i am sufferring the same thing in my 3+ years in a horribily abusive court case and environment. i was placed under supervised visitation still in effect for no reason, my home was stolen and my reduction in mental capabilitiy that was caused directly by my abuser and the JUDGE AND THE FORENSIC PSYCHOLOGIST AND MY ABUSERS ATTORNEY IS BEING USED AGAINST ME WITHOUT ANY EVIDENCE THAT IT AFFECTS ME A S AWAY OF FULLLY NEINFG ABLE TO PARENT MY KID. IM LOOKING FOR AN ATTORNEY THAT IS WILLING TO SUE THESE PEOPLE

    • Elizabeth McQuinn on October 26, 2016 at 3:59 pm

      I have suffered legal abuse for the past seven years, ever since my ex husband married his divorce attorney. And he vowed to “take me to court as much as possible “. He is obsessed with it. With me; hurting me.

    • s on November 15, 2018 at 9:48 am

      Dr. Karin, what can be done to kill this epidemic?

    • Katie Kohl on February 12, 2019 at 3:36 pm

      I need someones help. I’m dealing with this now

    • Mandie on August 29, 2019 at 8:45 pm

      Please help!
      … please pick up the phone.
      I’m in this current situation right now.
      Had no idea he was a sociopath, but this has been going on for 9 years.
      I’m mentally broken, drained and dont have the finances to keep fighting.
      I dont know how to protect myself, my now husband, and daughter.
      He is definitely using the courts as a way to keep chaos going and to show me just how powerless I am.
      I’m literally at my abusers mercy, and so are my daughters.
      However, should I kill the mother fucker, well then it will nor be deemed justifiable.
      Then again, I’m also being asked to appease my abuser, or he will take the custody case to trial.
      Im.done, just so done of having a personal boogie man, lurking behind the screen of a phone, using others to report back to him as to what I say, do, live, think etc.
      My peace, privacy, views, and all that once was, is no more, and havent been for the past 9 years.
      Please tell.me how to make it stop!??

      • Hera on September 25, 2019 at 7:29 pm

        I am so sorry you are going through this. Send me a direct message on Facebook or email through the contact link on my contact page here. I might be able to connect you with an organization in your area or a good attorney.

  2. Advocate on September 3, 2012 at 4:12 pm

    Dear cappacuniqueen,

    Legal Abuse Syndrome is a very real diagnosis and is the term that was first coined by Dr. Karin Huffer. In fact, she has written two books on this problem that has become rampant in our courts across this country and many other countries.

    Having been diagnosed with PTSD, you are entitled to acommodations in our court system under the ADAAA so that you may participate equally. The same is true for anyone with invisible disabilities such as Autusm, PTSD, etc., as the same is true for anyone who is blind, cannot walk, hard of hearing, etc.

    Please research her website, evalaccessadvocates.com for her book, Unlocking Justice.

    • s on November 15, 2018 at 9:47 am

      advocate what would accommodations look like?

  3. Debbie on February 20, 2013 at 8:32 am

    Again I totally understand the ‘chaos’ that is deliberately caused by the abuser – and their glee as they feed off of your trauma. Additionally I relate to the frustration of trying to make other people understand that they are dealing with a Sociapath who doesn’t play but normal rules – as they can appear to be perfectly normal, reasonable and plausible in public

  4. tami on March 8, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    Omg! EVERYWORD I’VE READ HERE…I HAVE LIVED! LIVED? BARELY SURVIVED. MYSELF AND MY FAMILY HAVE STOPPED LIVING! WE CANNOT GO ON ANY LOBGER UNTIL SOMETHING IS DONE ABOUT THIS! I TOO HAVE A GREAT CASE TO PRESENT TO…..ANYONE THAT WILL LISTEN. WE HAVE LOOKED, SEARCHED FOR AN ATTORNEY WITH ENOUGH GUTS TO LEAD ME INTO A COURTROOM TO START A CASE THAT WILL CHANGE OUR LEGAL SYSTEM BACK INTO A SAFE PROTECTIVE JUST… PLACE WHERE JUDGES FOLLOW THE LAW. I WANT (NEED) TO SUE FOR DAMAGES PUT UPON MY FAMILY BY JUDGES. BUT….I ALSO NEED TO DO SOMETHING TO CHANGE THE LAWS THE ALLOW CORRUPT JUDGES TO RUIN AND DESTROY LIVES….JUST BECAUSE ” THEY CAN”. IF ANYONE KNOWS OF SUCH A PERSON PLEASE PLEASE WRITE ME AND LET ME KNOW THEIR NAME AND I PROMISE TO DEVOTE EVERY MIBUTE TO HELPING THEM CORRECT THIS HORRIBLE INJUSTICE WE HAVE ALL SUFFERED THROUGH. THANK YOU ALL. TAMI.

    • Suzanne Barnes on June 5, 2015 at 5:40 am

      Tami, although 2 years have passed, I wanted to tell you about an attorney who represents people like us. Her name is Pat Barry, and she is based in California. If you live in CA great. If not, perhaps she can give you a referral. She gets it!

      Good luck!

      Suzanne

      • Josey McCormick on December 17, 2018 at 8:00 am

        Omg! Any help of the same for vancouver, wa? Small part of this is the Clark County Sheriff’s assisted while under the color of law 4 officers, as a favor for a fellow officer took my grandson from my daughter who has sole custody and gave him to the non-custodial father. The father has taken him to Pierce Co., he hired an unethical attorney who has control in court and freely manipulated the proceedings, To attempt custody. At this point in time my daughter still has legal custody. What sounds really messy and difficult in this case I believe can easily be corrected with a little help!?! Please.

    • Beth Burke on May 19, 2017 at 5:14 am

      Tami, please update me on anyone you found to help you. I am being tormented by my ex-husband as well and he continues to punish me and distroy my relationship with my children. My attorney did nothing thruout his abuse and he lost the $650,000 my parents gave me to protect me from him. He never called my lender and I lost my house and he himself verbally and emotionally abused me before, during and after he was my attorney! The AGC, my attorney general and several politicians from Michigan have done nothing to help me. Did you find anyone to represent you? I think we need to find an attorney that will take on more than their own state and we should file together to make a federal case!

      • Ann Foregger on October 29, 2018 at 1:17 am

        Hi Beth, I have a story too…a restraining order against my ex through 2099 and unbelievable documented abuse–first with my ex and then with the unjustice “justice system”. For example, when I was in a DV shelter with only a diaper bag and our daughter–he took my name off the title of our home, stole all of the equity out (leaving me with only the shared debt), paid my child support out of his credit card–again calling it community debt, the divorce is written “he gets everything in his possession and I get everything in mine”. I lost all of my 50 yrs of possessions, red convertible, RV and had to pay 50% of the mortgage and RV cost even though I had no access to either of them and had left my home due to HIS violence. Anyway, 12 years later I am just asking for a child support modification after a decade of being underpaid (which I did to protect our daughter–don’t want to make him mad, right?!?) So I have lived below poverty to protect our daughter…He makes $18k per month, owns 4 properties and pays mortgage of $700 per monrh, while my income is -$1,500/mo with 1 BR appt rent of $1850.
        So the story is real and not uncommon for mom’s trying to protect their children–and I am talking about documented sociopaths with 8 plus restraining orders, 3 plus ex-wives, and—ooops I was talking about my ex.

        LET’S FIND A WAY TO JOIN TOGETHER. I’M PROUD OF HOW I PROTECTED MY DAUGHTER, BUT I WANT TO KNOW IF THERE IS ANYONE OUT THERE THAT WANTS TO CREATE A HUGE LEGAL VOICE THAT COULD MAKE A DIFFERENCE!!!! Sorry, for the caps, but I wanted to increase the odds that anyone would read this.
        Here’s the deal: Life can suck, family law can suck and it will never be perfect….BUT the INJUSTICES that are currently going on are unacceptable and we need a voice. Not about every little thing that we didn’t get our “way” on….but the REAL DEAL of being financially and emotionally RUINED due to a legal system that won’t hear us good moms. Any one want to make some changes???

        • Jen on July 11, 2019 at 8:48 pm

          Yes, I am interested. I have been in litigation since 2012 and it’s still going. The courts do not care how much it cost and do not have the best interest of the children in mind at all. My ex gets away with not following and orders and the court never has held him in contempt but threatened me to switch custody if I did not force my children to go spend the summer with a man they hate. I have paid for social studies,therapy, psychologist, psychiatrist. My children have been interviewed by court services and even the schools got involved. Yet this person still has the right to his children and to keep me in constant litigation.

        • Tiffany Noble on July 17, 2019 at 6:00 pm

          Ann – YES! My story has been written and re-written in these comments. I believed that justice prevails, but in truth, (admitted by a wonderful prosecutor who has no power in my case) “the system is geared to be ‘fair’ to the abuser”…
          THIS CANNOT STAND. WE MUST DO WHAT IS NECESSARY TO PROTECT OUR CHILDREN AND EACH OTHER!
          Just tell me when and where – I’m there!

          • Tari on September 29, 2019 at 8:25 am

            My three children and I too have fallen victim to very much the same as so many of the experiences that I’ve read. I would be honored to help take a stand.



      • kimberly c pearson on November 7, 2018 at 10:06 pm

        https://www.change.org/p/congress-protection-from-sociopaths?recruiter=911299043&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink&utm_campaign=share_petition

        If you are really interested in making a difference please help by signing to enact a law to protect against narcissistic sociopaths.

    • Sheri fink on October 14, 2018 at 11:24 am

      Tami I’m trying to do the same thing. How can we meet

      Sheri

    • Kevin Samuel Delbridge on February 26, 2019 at 6:10 pm

      My name is kevin Samuel Delbridge from Halifax County NC. I have been abused by the nc childsupport Halifax county childsupport Halifax county clerk of court numerous judges and lawyers. Ive benn found in contempt of 40 times with no evidence in the record to prove any. Plus they have extorted 10,00
      0 dollars and caused my wife to alienate me from my daughter and cause me to lose every job ive had in past 15 years .please help me im suffering from agoraphobia and social phobia and ptsd/ Las

  5. Aletheia on June 21, 2013 at 9:45 am

    Prevention. Isn’t this one of the many buzz words we hear regarding rape, std’s, birth defects, drug abuse etc.? How about if the justice system applied this concept to all of it’s participants including the lawyers, judges, social workers, psychologists and all the rest? If they kept people who have the brain functioning of a psycopath OUT of the positions of control/authority by screening them prior to placing them in these positions, and also screened the plaintiffs and defendants so that we could have a chance to weed out those who were actually seeking help/truth/justice vs. those who just want to “play” by creating chaos and strife? But what if we as a society were all simply made aware of what psychopathy truly looks like, educated about this, and then given the chance to prevent ourselves from unknowingly putting ourselves in positions of danger (which includes emotionally, physically, financially, spiritually) by avoiding these people when possible?

    We’d have to change our entire system wouldn’t we? We’d have to admit that we have given free reign to evil when we allowed the many and often differing/opposing therories presented to the court system by those in the psychology field, that were used in order to explain away the evil nature/character of psychopaths. This would trickle down into every system in society including the educational system, religious systems on and on. Why? Because we have built EVERYTHING on the lie that people are all the same. We now know this isn’t true via DNA testing, MRI imaging etc. but just look at the colossal mess we’d be in if we admitted this. We’d have to apologize to the many people like you who have been so thoroughly raped by the justice system and then go back and rescue the many others that have been destroyed. So we end up staying just where we are at and only a few like you survive.

    But I see how we got here and why we stay here. It’s a horribly vicious circle. We unwittingly get involved with these evil destroyers (psychopaths) then we fall in love with them and give birth to their children. Some of us become finacially dependant on them due to their disatorious ways of controlling us (and again, nobody even forewarned us or prevented us from doing this as we are forced to concede that all are the same) and then we’re stuck. Because this is genetic/chromosomal, we give birth to more of them and now it’s personal. We may have to choose to protect the child we love (even though this child is incapable of loving us or anyone else) over the welfare of those in society who are unaware of the truth of psychopathy. So we do the same thing that was done to us because otherwise we are against our own. We also want our children (who are psychopaths) to have a chance to get a job, get married etc. and if the majority of people knew the truth of psychopathy, our children would never have a chance AND we might be stuck with them (yet another psychopath in our lives) forever.

    So here we are, broken and bloody and all we can do is cry at the heartbreak of it all. We can love and pray for each other but to do what we SHOULD do (educate all and prevent them from getting involved with or giving birth to more psychopaths) may ultimately force us to split our heart.

    Thank you for your personal story. I’m always so grateful for others who see the truth of psychopathy. I’m also so sad and sorry for us because we rarely get out and when we do, we often find ourselves alone. So again, thank you.

  6. Ali on October 3, 2013 at 2:22 pm

    Wow, I felt like I had no where to turn and that no one would understand. My husband was deployed and was not notified of a court proceeding against him in which he was father by defaulted and wages garnished. When he returned home, we had to physically split up because we could not afford to live together and I had to move home with my parents. We experienced fees for lawyers, breaking lease, and taking out loans to pay for the bills and food we could not afford because of the garnishment (more than 25,000 in debt). He has experienced really weird, depressive and aggressive symptoms. . He’s been constantly in and out of court for the past 4 years and it is still going. His behavior is getting worse to the point where he’s accepted the possibility of garnishment of 50% of income, not motivated to improve his life because “they” will take it away. He also is paranoid and jumps when the door bell rings. The most troubling is he has trouble eating and sleeping and has night terrors and waking up sweating. My main question for legal abuse syndrome is how do we get rid of it? I am loosing my husband to this.

    • cappuccinoqueen on October 3, 2013 at 2:41 pm

      Ali, I am sorry to hear about what you and your husband are going through. It sounds absolutely terrible. Sadly, as long as he is in this vicious court cycle the legal abuse will continue. That said, I would suggest that he see a therapist to help with this. It sounds like he is experiencing PTSD from all of this and he might need to speak to a professional to see how he can better emotionally handle all of the stress. I also suggest that he gets a good attorney and try and see if he can work out something a little more tolerable. If he was deployed and had no knowledge that the child even existed, this seems as though it isn’t right to have launched all this child support against him before he was even aware. As long as he is accepting his responsibility (assuming that the child is even his child and he is accepting responsibility), he should be able to work something a little more reasonably with the court. All that said, I don’t know the details of his case and I am not a lawyer. I do know, however, that going in and out of court is extremely emotionally taxing. Especially if the other party is determined to make you suffer vice coming to a reasonable resolution. I wish you and your husband all the luck. The best thing he can do is try and better himself despite the challenges and be there for his children in the best way he can.

  7. JJ on October 13, 2013 at 3:00 pm

    Stumbled on this while searching for “legal abuse.” I’m now realizing there is an actual term for my experience. There is no diagnosis, but I’m pretty sure the father of my child has borderline personality. He has all the symptoms and does the behaviors. The big pattern is that he reacts to any criticism, either real or imagined, by blowing up and turning it around on me. This sounds like what happened to you too. So whereas my legal declarations about domestic violence and his substance abuse were true, he responded by accusing me of being an abuser, a drug addict, a prostitute, and more. All false, but the court just throws up their hands and declares it all “he said, she said.”

    Do you still use a lawyer? Have you tried self-representing to save money? I’m thinking of firing my attorney because she let me sign a bad settlement under duress (my ex threatened to kill himself in court!) Maybe it’s better to get the lawyers out of the picture? Curious what you’ve tried. If you have a good lawyer, I’d like to know how you got them to help with the twisting and false allegations.

    • cappuccinoqueen on October 14, 2013 at 5:54 am

      JJ, As you have seen…I am no longer in litigation. That said, it was very expensive. I agree with firing your attorney if you don’t feel he/she had your child’s best interest. When looking for a new attorney, don’t be afraid to interview several and even go watch them in action on another case. It is worth making sure that this person is going to do the best job possible considering how much money you will spend. Regarding going pro se, sometimes I wish I had done that. I am not sure I would have done a worse job myself. That said, I would not suggest that without seeking out some help from a local law school or domestic violence group. It is really hard to do this and you don’t want to have any regrets.

      • Lin on July 30, 2017 at 10:31 pm

        As someone who started out pro se, I may have been better off hiring an attorney and not trusting the ex to do what he said. I lost all custody and may have no choice but to go for pro se in appeals.

        • April Wagner on September 5, 2018 at 9:43 am

          I filed with the court of Appeals and they accepted my case. God is always in control. It’s time the “Legal Abuse” stops. I did a pro per with the COA and I’m not giving up.

  8. JJ on October 13, 2013 at 3:05 pm

    PS: I only read your about page after I commented. Oh my. I’m stunned and terribly sorry for your loss. Heart breaking.

    Congratulations on your pregnancy. : )

  9. Angie Layton on October 30, 2013 at 7:57 pm

    I am representing a number of people going through this process and would love to develop a group of anybody willing to tell their stories. The Denver Post is interested in writing an expose, and I am hoping to do a presentation in Canada next year about this problem.

    • hallie rose on March 10, 2014 at 7:02 am

      I am american mom trapped in Australia with kids suffering profoundly due to psychopathic australian and horrific court system. I am tormented in isolation by years of fily court which has seen me stripped of right to go home stripped of family we have been homelesd and live in poverty. Because i got a new job to try to pick up peices ex took out nutty intervention order. I am sole support for kids. He is trying to make me humiliatef yet again and lose job. My life is hell and kids cant even see relatives in states

    • Cecilia A. Sparks on March 25, 2015 at 4:29 pm

      I have been trying like crazy to find someone to advocate for victims of sociopaths. I, too, am a victim, as well as two women before me, and the one following, who doesn’t know it yet. Do you have any idea where we can find advocacies, because everywhere I turn, I”m told that legislature, etc. can’t help me.

      • cappuccinoqueen on April 6, 2015 at 12:47 pm

        Reach out to domestic violence groups. Often times, victims of sociopaths and women who have lived through domestic violence have very similar experiences.

        • Mandy Solley on August 4, 2019 at 2:34 pm

          I need help. Divorced a narcissist, pathological liar. Agreed to equal custody, shared. My legal aid lawyer coerced me. He got out of hitting me and paying child support. Suspected child abuse, sexual, but couldn’t prove it. Stopped visitation. He is trying to hold me in contempt. I live in Arkansas. I need a lawyer here, pro Bono, who can fight him. Please help my girls, toddlers.

          • Hera on August 14, 2019 at 7:30 pm

            Hi Mandy, I am really sorry to hear about your situation. Unfortunately, I do not know of any attorneys in Arkansas who take these types of cases pro bono. Sometimes you can find Non-profits who have on occasion have attorneys in house who can help in certain cases, but this is also rare. I would suggest going to free legal clinics to see if they have referrals or reaching out to local DV organizations for suggestions.



    • Colette on May 13, 2015 at 9:35 am

      Angie,
      Were you able to do this presentation? I am currently in bitter custody litigation with my abuser. The circumstances of which are exactly as the ones Im reading about on this page. Id be interested in hearing/reading about your experience.

      Colette

    • Chris wallman on October 15, 2015 at 10:06 pm

      Angie- did the Denver post ever publish this story? After draining all my resources, and gaining some small victories over the abuses I have endured (I am a male, btw), I see my children enough to survive. I am suffering significantly, and having a hard time resuming a successful 6-figure career taken from me by false allegations and harassment. Anyway, long story short, I am having to set out Pro-se into the appeals process on some issues, and would love any more published information on legal abuse, victims resources, and help for the PTSD that is ruining my life!

    • Katy Johnson on February 6, 2016 at 7:58 pm

      Angie, are you an attorney? I would very much like to speak with you..

    • Carol on September 7, 2016 at 7:13 am

      Please any referrals for an attorney that can handle my las case in Florida.

    • Bill B on August 13, 2017 at 10:14 am

      Hi Angie, I am an American dad who has been fighting a very interesting high-conflict battle with a Canadian mom in Newfoundland. I’d be interested in sharing my story which includes the former Miss Newfoundland, minister’s daughter, the pentecostal church and a treasure hunter. I know that sounds made up but is true.

    • Sheri fink on October 14, 2018 at 11:33 am

      Yes sign me up my name is Sheri I live in PA and this is rampet throughout the legal system here.

    • Ann Foregger on October 29, 2018 at 1:32 am

      Oh WOW! I’d love to share my story and actually am a certified domestic violence advocate and—I know alot of stories. I hope you might be interested in another round of sharing stories from us women who are living it!
      Not sure how this works, but to this “site” , I absolutely give access to my email for anyone from this site to contact me. Thanks!!!

    • Lisa on January 26, 2019 at 5:17 am

      Yes!

  10. OSCARHUGO on June 24, 2014 at 12:46 am

    I want all to know that I am a loving Father who’s Ex-Spouse is a Narcissist with Paranoid Personality Disorder. Beside the shear sadistic revenge of dragging me through the Courts, she uses Child Custody as duress to retain property that is not hers.
    Often the Malicious Ex uses an attack on Custody to defame and then get an advantage over the Property settlements.
    I believe the Legal Abuse is Domestic Violences, and based on the Nadkarni Decision, I hope to get the Appeals Court to recognized this.
    Thanks for this website, and for not making it a gender war. There are abused Spouses and loving Parents of both sexes that are suffering from legal abuse. We need to join together to make Legal Abuse designated as Domestic Violence.

    • cappuccinoqueen on June 24, 2014 at 1:47 pm

      Oscarhugo, you are very right – abuse can happen to either gender. What is happening in our family court is bad for families – period. Hang in there man. Legal abuse is traumatizing and can send anyone into depression. Try and stay as healthy as possible for your kids.

  11. Cecilia A. Sparks on March 25, 2015 at 4:30 pm

    What do you do if a decision comes back that you feel is unfair because the sociopath continuously lied in court? I feel like I’d rather go to jail than pay that monster one more dime from my menial savings.

  12. New Strategy on September 27, 2016 at 3:40 am

    Thank you so much cappuccinoqueen. I just learned of LAS watching LAWLE$$ FAMILY COURTS: Almost All Temporary Order Hearings are Unconstitutional and Fraud, on YouTube. Social Media is great. We can encourage each other, expose wrongdoing and corruption. I have been ground by the Family Law $ystem in Ontario. I am in a deficit of $1,967.oo monthly for all the awards to my x-socipathic spouse suffering Histrionic Personality Disorder. Six years of abuse in family court for someone who paid voluntary support, with no credit for 6 years of Occupation Rent. I was also punished $3,800.oo of Court Co$t$ for doing a Motion based on “mens rea”, intentional perjury on the Form 13.1 Financial Forms. .

    Judges were formerly lawyers. There should be separate Schools for Judges. The collusion is a disgrace. Someone warned me that the courts would attempt to break me. The man who told me this was in court 32 times in 1.5 years over trying to keep custody of his son from CAS after his girlfriend died. No gender is exempt from the abuse. The designated scapegoat is subject to collusion by his own lawyer. A Notice Server told me he overheard my first lawyer tell someone that she will not do a family law case, unless she can squeeze her client for $35,000.oo.

    For those in Ontario I found this document: Focus on Family Law – Ministry of the Attorney General – Ontario
    https://www.attorneygeneral.jus.gov.on.ca/english/about/pubs/cjr/firstrep……

    BUT, have they enacted any recommendations? Highly doubtful except for throwing more millions to lawyers exploiting Illegal Aid. My x’s first 3 lawyers were employed by The Family Law Centre in Thunder Bay a taxpayer funded organization enabling corrupt lawyers to enrich themselves while destroying families. Her 3rd lawyer even attempted a Contempt Motion without serving me Notice which is illegal. Google “the Two faces of Justice” done by the Toronto Star exposing the antics of “Fox Theatre” at the LSUC. The documented 61 million dollars that lawyers in Ontario stole from their clients in real estate, wills and retainer fees. They did not even look at abuses in Family Law.

    We should lobby our MPP’s that Regional Family Law Committees be established with a large makeup of victims of court abuse being members.

  13. the invisible game on March 3, 2017 at 4:42 am

    Awesome site you have here but I was curious about if you knew of any user discussion forums that cover the same topics talked about here?
    I’d really love to be a part of online community where I can get advice from other experienced people that share the same interest.
    If you have any recommendations, please let me know.
    Thanks a lot!

    • cappuccinoqueen on April 19, 2017 at 5:20 pm

      Hi there, not yet…but I am trying to expand my site and will look into doing something like this.

  14. nma.gd on March 15, 2017 at 12:12 am

    Excellent article. I will be dealing with some of these issues as well..

  15. Nicole on March 29, 2017 at 8:13 pm

    Can anyone help me find a pro bono attorney and or start a fundraiser to help get my daughter back. My oldest daughter (11 y/o) and I are nearly incapacitated with grief and are experiencing severe s/s of PTSD that is starting to scare me as I try to stay strong and fight for my 4 y/o little girl who was taken by her fathers deceitful emergency custody order granted on totally false allegations without my knowledge even saying that It should be kept a secret from me as I’d kidnap her if I ever found out… Lies and granted on 2/13/17 and he has refused ALL supervised visits and parental rights and now neither my 11 y/o nor I can even visit at school during lunch and the school is convinced I’m the abusive one and He has now filed a new charge saying I tried to kidnap her by going into his mothers him which NEVER happened. She was a sweet happy loving little girl that I raised on my own successfully and happy the three of us until he removed her and is feeding her lies about me and trying to put me in jail with lies. I have lost my job and can barely keep it together for my oldest and despite the concerns of the select few people left in my life they are all extremely hesitant to even come near a court room facing his allegations. I have everything to prove he is lying this entire time but it’s me against 2 dozen lies, him, his attorney, and his mother all lying. I can’t give up on my little girl but I can’t give up on my 11 y/o daughter either and he’s forcing me to choose and still face him nearly weekly only to albatross me under oath in front of judges watching me become emotionally distraught with each lie… Idk what to do. He has convinced everyone, probably my own little girl, to be afraid of me. :,( I have no attorney and have to face charges again on Monday and just found out today

    • cappuccinoqueen on April 19, 2017 at 5:17 pm

      What part of the country are you in? Send me an email at cappuccinoqueen@rocketmail.com. There might be some orgs in your area that I can suggest.

    • Linda Redenbaugh on May 22, 2017 at 9:24 am

      Dear Holy Father, this is the precisely the kind of thing that has been happening to me and my daughters. He is wealthy and now after surviving a decade of this ALL I have is my faith! Where are you did you find help? I am considering fleeing to Canada there is no help here! Just a hand full of people going through this absurdity. One of my twins called 911 in his care cause she didn’t wAnt to live anymore after the latest barrage of lies against me. And like you they blame me! Contact me please extendedfamilycareservices @gmail.com. I need to hear from you I am concerned for u too, these it seems will only be satisfied with the death if us. Linda

      • cappuccinoqueen on July 10, 2017 at 9:46 am

        I would not ever advise fleeing the country. While that might seem like the best option, I have known of many people who have been brought back by the authorities and then completely lost custody and access to their children.

  16. Vctoria alvarez on April 28, 2017 at 9:19 am

    Please help, I am in Illinois and my ex has put me though all the above for the last 9 years. I was awareded custody again for the 3rd time and now he is appealing. I’m already having a breakdown. Is there any support in Illinois,St Louis area that can help me stop this?

  17. Linda Redenbaugh on May 22, 2017 at 7:52 am

    I don’t have any money for an atty. I have been going through this for a decade. Even when I had money he still hd deeper pockets and I never get any help. Can I flee to Canada…if I stay here I just keep getting accused of worse and worse things

  18. Vic on July 3, 2017 at 8:30 am

    Two sons have gone through 10 year legal debacle in NC because of an alleged picture taken of 17 year old classmate with her lesbian friend while in high school. There was never any case, but since girl was daughter of small town attorney, the System tried to destroy their lives by accusing them of a sexual crime & keeping the case unresolved for years. Had to seek intervention to expose this county at state Supreme Court level. Sons humuilated, faced Arrests, jailed, attorney fees, & finally dismissal, But the huge cost to mental well being & financially draining. PTSD is REAL! Need advice to pursue.

  19. Lin on July 30, 2017 at 10:06 pm

    I’m currently going through a custody battle where every time I go to court, I lose more custody of my kids. I also suffered from PTSD when we left for another state and their father filed motion after motion against me racking up costly legal fees and forcing me to pay them! I then returned to the state where my ex filed and have since become homeless and bankrupt. I’m still trying to fight for custody of my two children because I’ve read too many stories about psychopaths/narcissists/sociopaths to know what they are capable of. I’ll get myself back on my feet only to be knocked over again by the psychopath ex. Having him in our lives is like drinking small amounts of poison. A little bit will make you sick, but over time…

  20. Patty on August 7, 2017 at 3:16 pm

    We all need to get advocates and/or become one, I originally helped start Mothers against drunk drivers in the 80’s and we loaded up the courtrooms with watchers, get groups together, take it to ism meetings, such as, like AA, Alanon, etc.

    get this out there, too many crooks, not enough of us

  21. Patty on August 7, 2017 at 3:19 pm

    I did finally come out of this or so I think, I have been in litigation with a family member since 1988-1993, in 1993 I won for him to come in a different manner to keep me in court until now.

    Judge denied Res adjudicata, how could she, oh, only money would be the trick.

    ten years, hundreds of thousands of dollars and I am the bad one.

  22. Judi Beltz on September 15, 2017 at 8:53 am

    Should you feel safe living in a world where justice is decided in a system that already failed you?

    Judges should be educated. Lawyers that take on clients that are mentally ill and also abusers should have to take training on ethics vs serving the mentally ill and abusers .

    Judges should be held accountable when they ignore domestic violence they should be called out for more training

  23. Kim Marshall on October 14, 2017 at 4:36 pm

    I have been going through legal abuse since my ex mother in law retired from the courthouse. I have been arrested multiple times on false charges all which were dropped up until the most recent when my ex husband who retained primary custody got his mother and new pregnant girlfriend of one year to file more false charges on me. I was forced to “pretend” I was a lawyer while I had to represent myself due to the multiple attempts to get help and a lawyer have been refused. They had video tape at the police station this time of the false reports being made refused to give them to me and when the jury was asked if any of them knew the officer testifying one said yes and they automatically put him on the jury docket. I was given the ticket even though it was proven false. He is now trying to take me to court to take my parental rights away after he and his girlfriend have been harassing me for a year claiming she is going to take my children. They filed false child protective claims on me which were dropped due to me recording taping conversations and saving all her false claims through texts and pictures. It is ridiculous.

    • PittBull on November 19, 2017 at 6:05 pm

      To all who find themselves, meat in the grinder;
      How brave are you willing to be? If you have spent 10yrs. in court, you have more experience than most attorneys you are hiring (they settle 80% of the time, and through noncompliance, you get robbed twice). Family court is all about the Judges & Attorney’s relationships (like Congress, passing crap for the rich to get out of support our country & sending us the debt).
      1. comes to terms with the fact that you bred with a narcissistic sociopath, and are in a Hot & Cold War for life.
      2. pay attention to what’s going on. The judge and attorneys are cut from the same cloth, or they wouldn’t be doing these jobs.
      3. everything must be on paper, and I mean everything (the judge will not allow regular hearings to be on the record, and will save your case for last, in order to be abusive. Expect it, remember, you are not dealing with one sociopath.
      4. Become a top office professional with your case, extremely organized in PDF folders & paper copies in legal boxes.
      5. You will at some point have to be pro-se, so start studying all your states civil laws, appeal cases online & all of the motions put in by previous attorneys. This means writing motions, studying rules of evidence and putting all your arguments in writing. Why? Because the judge will barely let you speak & thinks you are an idiot. Be prepared to be abused (what’s good is you are used to it). When asked, you can say “Your honor, I put everything in my motion.”
      Pay for transcripts of previous hearings, AP cite all relivant testimony, facts of divorce decrees, depositions, exhibits, and supporting appellate decisions, etc. in your motions. Why?
      6. Because you are signaling to the judge that you are ready to appeal a case that goes against previous appellate rulings. Also, if possible, have a credible witness at every single interaction with any court or appointee. If you need time to plan a strategy, or need to get something changed, file motions with the court for extensions, etc.
      7. Understand, judges hate this shit. The more reasonable and prepared you are, the more they like you. They hate pro-se, so get over it. You will never be out of court till your dead, if he owes support.
      8. He will state lies about everything, it’s he said she said, bring your evidence. Your ex’s attorney will dispute everything you submit. Get business records from your previous attorney, as needed, along with affidavit. Submit to court and opposing counsel with certificate of service.
      9. You must become the most competent family non-attorney possible, learning as you go, working for your family. You will never get to quit!
      10. Always live in truth (not delusion) with honor, document everything, be professional in court. Never stop fighting for yourself and children’s rights. The system is not designed for these cases, and is not changing for the 3% of sociopaths. Know the law!!!
      11. Last, be a loving therapist for your children, read books on how to help them cope. The fact is that you and your children are damaged, and can never completely escape the effects of a sociopath. Your children will struggle in relationships for life, as will you. But like a Vietnam or Gulf War Vet, there are methods of coping and improving life. If you are lucky, your child will not repeat your mistake.

      • JayCee on January 27, 2018 at 7:06 am

        Great advice, Pittbull. I really do mean that.
        Unfortunately, people who have PTSD are not capable of meeting such a standard. Even the smartes, most organized, most hard-working victim will fall short. PTSD is not just a horrible feeling. It’s an actual impairment. And it’s very real.
        There were weeks when I could sort the elementary school papers my kids brought home – I WASNT CAPABLE! I have a college degree and I could not do it for weeks at a time. It’s very scary.
        What hope is there for us?

        • PittBull on December 19, 2018 at 1:49 am

          I have PTSD from my sociopath/psychopath. You only have two choices when it comes to the children, fight for them or don’t. When it comes down to the money, you will end up judgment proof, completely impoverished, that how this 50 billion dollar family court industry is designed. Take a que from the dead beats, have nothing in your name. Only a good bankruptcy attorney is worth the money paid. Sad, but true.

  24. Helen on December 16, 2017 at 1:30 pm

    Thank you for taking the time to write the above. I wish i was stronger, but after almost 6 years of the horrific court system I am drained in every possible way.

  25. Momto4kiddos on December 17, 2017 at 11:30 am

    Anyone interested in becoming an activist to change the laws regarding family court abuse, please contact me at pab3girls@yahoo.com. We need to take this to a national level first – then world-wide. I have some ideas but I need people like me who have been through this hell willing to come forward and tell their story.

  26. Liz on January 14, 2018 at 10:28 am

    What county and state are you in?

  27. Chiedza on April 26, 2018 at 3:35 am

    Its April 2018 and I am from Zimbabwe and have just found this site today and it doesnt give me any hope at all. I have been reported 8 times in the past 1yr and am always in and out of court. How do I survive this. I am broke already and the corruption is so rampant that I have been convicted once and right now I have 3court cases. I am in court every other day. I cant even hold a job because he files the cases in different cities. And I need to travel otherwise they lock me up. I wont give up. To all those with their emails on here, I will definitely write to you. Something has to happen in our justice system to protect the real victims from psychopathic abuse…

  28. David Jacobs on June 18, 2018 at 7:19 pm

    Psychopaths are very real. And divorcing them with children is the crem dela crem exhausting and nauseating diabolical dance with the devil. It doesn’t end. They tip toe on the strings of the law, pulling them to their own advantage, while they thrill themselves and laugh at everybody around them as they stab deep and ugly wounds into their victims, who are actually consistently beautiful and valuable people who too easily fell dead into their traps. So they stole your children. But you can save your self. They humiliated you. But you won’t be humiliated. Cut it off. Get away. Start a new life. Sacrifice. They are evil. You will be better for it. You will be finally rid of and free you of all your own demons…and in that sense they were a gift from G-d.

  29. Ann Foregger on October 29, 2018 at 1:41 am

    Hi David–your words of wisdom or PROFOUND!!! I’d love to hear the backstory on that, but all I can say is that you “nailed it”. For some reason, their “charm” wins and they get so much joy out of destroying us. I have to constantly remind myself that “God” is in control (that’s how I believe) and that no one can pull a “fast one” on my destiny. Sometimes in the heat of the pain it is easy to forget that God is still on the thrown (again, disclaimer–that’s what I believe) and in tough times we are growing the most and prepping for our next promotion.
    Blessings!!!!nAnn

  30. Kimberly Pearson on November 7, 2018 at 10:26 pm

    Can everyone email me? I’m taking this all and a petition to Congress.
    kcpearson31@gmail.com
    570-793-1304

  31. Ann on December 30, 2018 at 7:52 pm

    This article is so true. I totally lost faith in human justice after going through divorce. Family courts just add insult to injury. It seems that nothing matters to them but to make all cases fit into the 50/50 custody formula, which is the simplest to handle for them. There needs to be a thorough reform of child custody laws. Best interest of the child doctrine is, in fact, best interest of the family court doctrine, when scrutinized. If nothing changes and psychopathic parents prevail in custody cases, we will some day turn into a nation of psychopaths.

  32. Ann on December 30, 2018 at 8:22 pm

    Things can only change when a major news agency like CNN would publish an article on the state of affairs in family courts. Politicians will then wake up.

  33. Alissa on January 24, 2019 at 11:08 am

    Thank you for your post, it helps to know i am not alone – I, myself am in the midst of a 4-year (and counting) custody battle with my psycho/sociopathic ex and your words have matched my thoughts unlike most others; even now, more than 6 years past your posting date.

  34. Terri rybicki on January 24, 2019 at 12:42 pm

    This is my life since 2015. I’m physically, emotionally and financially drained. There’s no light at the end of the tunnel. The courts have to be punished for allowing this abuse to continue. I suggest we all stick together and bring a lawsuit against the family courts.

    • JANE MARIE GAJEWSKI on August 26, 2019 at 8:31 pm

      FRAUD UPON THE COURT! <——-research it! ! For the love of god, the judges do the fraud right in front of our faces! WITH attorneys! they have a "DUTY" to report the abuse but don't! that is called corruption.

      SEE HOW THIS GOES……..

  35. Mama Bear on June 16, 2019 at 11:50 pm

    The entire system is failing my daughter. She disclosed physical and sexual abuse to her therapist at a center for children who are victims of domestic violence, after I left her father for domestic violence. The police cut her forensic interview short, and then gave her father the forensic interview and case materials before interviewing him, and told me that abuse never occurred, despite the fact that her therapist believes her. The DA refused to prosecute (I am told she’s too young, and juries don’t find young victims believable, and DAs are elected officials, that rely on prosecutions in court to get re-elected.) Her father has me in court almost monthly on one motion after another. The parenting evaluator stated that I need to accept that I am not the victim of domestic violence, and didn’t even include my daughter’s disclosure of domestic violence in his evaluation, and recommended going from supervised visitation to 50/50 custody. I have so much evidence, and he has nothing but his lies – no documentation or corroborating statements or evidence, yet everyone listens to him and the entire system falls for his lies, and is completely failing my daughter, who is greatly suffering from the effects of the abuse, and having to see him every weekend, and the only people who care are her therapist and her pediatrician, and it’s killing me. I feel so helpless and hopeless. This system is supposed to protect her and it isn’t!

    • JANE MARIE GAJEWSKI on August 26, 2019 at 7:47 pm

      FRAUD UPON THE COURT! MAMA BEAR there is no help for pro se’s ON THE FEDERAL LEVEL and THEY KNOW IT! I brought it to there attention and they, the “JUDGES” POSTED MY COMPLAINT on the INTERNET for all to see! I have PTSD, and to tell you truthfully……I love being disabled, THE FED”JUDGES” HATE ME! JUDGE MANNING and Judge DENLOW…………..TOOK AWAY my most valued right, THE right to be heard……..I told JUDGE MANNIING THANKS! AND COULD YOU APPOINT AN ATTORNEY…..REMEMBER I’M DISABLE, ADA LAWS! THE MORE LEGAL ABUSE THE BETTER I GET! BTW, JUDGE MANNING DID GIVE ME THAT RIGHT! SHE GAVE ME A COURT APPOINTED ATTORNEY
      AND I FIRED THEM!

    • JANE MARIE GAJEWSKI on August 26, 2019 at 8:52 pm

      IT DIDNT PROTECT MY DAUGHTER FROM THE ABUSES, OR ME! ………..GET THAT EVIDENCE INTO YOUR file!

  36. JANE MARIE GAJEWSKI on August 26, 2019 at 8:53 pm

    ORDER OF PROTECTION

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