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DOMESTIC VIOLENCE: DR. RO KNOWS: In her widely viewed interview with Oprah, Rihanna was the face of millions of abused women

rihanna-cries-about-chris-brown-on-oprah_h

rihanna-cries-about-chris-brown-on-oprah Credit: Google Images

By: Dr. Rosetta Stith

And, those women even today endure the ravages of domestic abuse and violence!

Rihanna’s ordeal will help leverage bipartisan political support to renew funding for the Violence Against Women Act. Her tragic experience with violence,  like the experience of other women,  is real and horribly everlasting.

I commend Rihanna for her courage and openness which enabled her to recount her ordeal for all of America to hear; and, which included a salient factor-Chris Brown, her abuser, needs help. The need for help and counseling applies to other men who are abusers.

Her tears reflect hurtful memories of the brutal assault which  still pervades her heart and mind.  Like Rihanna, many abused women have those memories. As survivors, abused women continue to be abused.

Rihanna did what many women should do, but do not do enough. She reported this violent incident to the police. She got on the road of healing herself by recognizing that it was not her fault because Chris Brown needs appropriate behavioral/ domestic counseling.

Thank you Oprah!

Your interview will serve as a poignant reminder that as women, we have rights and a support system to deal with a domestic violence crisis including programs, relatives, and friends. Your show gave us a critical path to follow to end this level of violence.

And for Rihanna:  It’s  I Can, You Can, We Can!

Way to go!!

I have a message for expectant and parenting young mothers who have been abused.

As the former Director of The Paquin School for Expectant and Parenting Adolescents and Their Children, which was a Baltimore City Public Middle/ Secondary High School for Girls, on-site Pre-School Programs for their children,  and  part of my experience included teaching young  girls, other women in their families, boyfriends, and young fathers that violence should not be a part of their family life.

Remember, if you are the victim of abuse, you have rights.

First, call the police and report the abuse.

Second, embrace and reach out to your family and friends.

Third, take advantage of the physical and mental health programs and prevention programs, like those which were offered at Paquin, with a staff of appropriate professionals who can help you.

One of  life’s values taught at Paquin which you should embrace is that besides the importance of your education and the welfare of your child, the fact that even though we were not born together, as women we are better working together!

LONDON 2012 OLYMPICS: Michael Phelps- A Man For All Seasons- Awarded the “ Greatest Olympic Athlete of All Times” for his 2012 Olympic legacy in London”

English: U.S. swimmer Michael Phelps shows off...

                            By: Dr. Rosetta Stith                                                                                                                                                                                      

In some games it’s: “‘3 strikes’ and you are out!”

Not true for Michael Phelps, a young Baltimore  man who has earned three consecutive wins for the same swimming event, the 200 Meters Individual Medley. It has made him an international hero, and a shining athletic Olympic Star for the World, the United States, and his home State of Maryland.

Hats off to his wonderful and loving mother, Ms. Debbie Davisson Phelps,  and his supportive family and friends for the love and support which have allowed him to grow as a young boy and a strong young man. He was enabled to face the growing changes that life brings to our youth. He developed a positive message to disregard and understand unacceptable behaviors, apologize where needed, and continue to move forward as he has done for his self, his family, and his global fans.

That was apparent from the touching moments when he was captured on television networks looking at his family in the stands for their visual support and applause.

Phelps has earned 22 Olympic Medals from three consecutive Olympic Events (2004-Athens, 2008-Beijing, and 2012-London)

His final words to his family, his fans and the sport, “ I  did it!”

Congratulations, way to go Mr. Phelps!

You made us proud again as you now move on to new life ventures, chosen life paths, and your continual support to provide opportunities to teach children to learn how to swim just like you.

To me, this is a needed and valuable life lesson for them, because our children ‘must see to be’ if they are to learn, grow, see and appreciate what you have earned and accomplished.

They will want to be just like you!

I cannot think of a better person to provide and leave this path for children who want to put ‘sport’s on their list of things ’to learn and do’ so that they can be just like you!

Thank you, for all that you do, and your recent success could not have happened to a better person and role model!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        

SCHOOLS: DR. RO KNOWS: Moms, it happens every year for children – going back to school; what you need to know for a successful school year

Happy Children Playing Kids

Happy Children Playing Kids (Photo credit: epSos.de)

By: Dr. Rosetta Stith

*Do not surprise them.

*Begin to talk to them about going to school each day to learn their ABC’s, numbers, read books, and meet other children who are their size and ages, and other exciting things.  

*Do not wait until the last-minute to take them to this strange place to see and meet other children they do not know.

*You may want to verify their zoned school for your area/neighborhood by calling your local school system to ask what their requirements are for registration which will include their shot records, and which must be current before they are registered to enter. This is extremely helpful for parents/guardians who must take time from planned activities or work schedules to satisfy this requirement for your children.

*Most school systems have early registration programs as an ‘Early Start’, find out the dates and time. Talk to your neighbors and parents to find out which children are scheduled to go to school for this school year. 

*Develop planning sessions with the parents and children in your neighborhood who will attend the same school by age and grade.

*Have some ‘Getting To Know My School Friends And My New School Sessions’ with their friends before they are scheduled to attend school.

*Set aside a time each day, perhaps during dinner to talk about their day at school, or what they may need for the next day. Be a good listener, and ask questions to see if anyone is bothering them with unkind names and gestures that the teacher may not have seen or observed.

*Talk with them about their bed time and other things that must be done before they go to bed (bath time and what they would like to wear to school) so that they will be a part of this daily routine and ready to go to school each day.

*Check their book bags before they go to school to make sure that they have nothing in their bags that are harmful or inappropriate for school.

 *You may also want to talk with the assigned teacher for material requirements for the first week of school which may include parents or guardians spending some part of the day to visit their children’s classroom to observe and assure their children that a member of their family is there and sharing their first days of school with them. This is helpful and allows you to hear what they think about their new school experience and find out what is needed for the next day.

*Remember, if school is to be important to your child, it must first be important to you.

*As the school year continues, be mindful of the monthly themes and scheduled activities, attend/participate when possible, or have a family member attend for you.

*You may have to verify their participation with your child with a letter to their teacher and includes your telephone number for safety reasons/authorized visits with your child.

*Remember, it’s all in the family and a delight for you and other family members to see what they are doing for school.

*Enjoy a safe and wonderful year of learning with your children.

*Celebrate this new journey with them, and that you will be there with lots of support, hugs, and kisses for this new place called school!  

YOUR COMMENTS AND YOUR QUESTIONS ARE WELCOMED!