Lesson Learned from Ciara’s Defamation Lawsuit Against Future: Avoid Bad Mouthing Your Ex

This world can put a hole in your soul sometimes, Put you at the end of your road,  Sometimes you just break down, When this world tries to end you, I defend you..
I’ll be there to stop the bleeding, I’ll be there to start the healing…” Ciara, “I Got You

Fulton County, Georgia (Jan 6, 2017): Singer, songwriter and actress, Ciara, has dropped a $15 million defamation law suit filed against her ex-fiancee, rapper, Future. 

Ciara accused Future of making public comments that portrayed her in a “false light” and spoke negatively about her parenting ability. Future also characterized Ciara as greedy for seeking child support for their son. The lawsuit resulted after Future blasted Ciara in social media posts, and called her names  like “bitch” and “punk ass ho”. Journalist Stereo Williams criticized the disrespect in which Future addressed Ciara and stated (excerpt, link to full article posted below), “A disagreement over child support doesn’t have to devolve into a famous man publicly calling the also-famous mother of his child a “bitch “” and “...men must be held accountable for their behavior and to the women with whom they have a child…” 

The couple’s relationship ended shortly after the birth of their son, in 2014.  I agree with Stereo Williams – the end of a relationship with another person should not mean that your child is dragged into your drama, and made a part of the break-up. It is wrong to bad mouth an ex, especially in a public way, because what you are saying – and doing – will hurt your child. And hurt your child even more than it would hurt your ex. Adults have the ability to deal with their issues or seek legal recourse; the same can’t be said for children who are caught in the middle. A parent’s words and actions create the environment in which  child lives, and ultimately shapes who the child grows into. Parents need to be mindful, and protective, that they do not project their own issues onto a child. You don’t have to agree with your ex or even like your ex but for the sake of the child, it is best to remain polite and respectful.

Side note: I do realize there are cases (like mine) where parents find themselves in situations where they do go public with certain issues involving their family – this happens a lot in cases involving domestic abuse, extreme custody disputes, and with other serious issues that impact the family or society. I think there is a fine line between exposing  a problem and outright bad mouthing an ex (or anyone else). For me, personally, I balance that line by checking my motivations – i.e. does speaking out serve a greater purpose or is about me? Sometimes you do need to speak out to right a wrong or address a problem or raise awareness…. but when doing so, it is also important to be professional and respectful when addressing those issues (stick to facts!). Avoid personal digs or disclosing information to embarrass or hurt someone. Also, continue to educate yourself and seek other avenues for networking, and raising awareness. Working with other people on a common goal or issue is how you make a difference (and is not the same as carrying out a personal vendetta against someone).

Ciara previously released a heartfelt song and video title “I Got You” dedicated her son. “I Got You” is about her love for her son, and her efforts to protect him when the world/life becomes tough. The video includes home videos beginning when Ciara announces her pregnancy, and continuing through the first year of her son’s life.

Even though dismissed, Ciara’s lawsuit raises awareness that bad mouthing, and speaking negative about the other parent, is harmful to children and makes co-parenting more difficult.

Because children share a bond with both parents, and relate to each parent in a special way, children will internalize negative talk made about a parent as if it were said to them personally. Judge Ann Kass (2nd Judicial District, New Mexico) wrote Don’t Bad-Mouth Divorcing Parents In Front of Children; Criticizing a Parent Also Hurts Kids and says,”Children see themselves as half of each parent. When children hear bad things about one parent, they hear bad things about half of themselves. If they hear bad things about both their parents, they feel that both halves of themselves must be of little worth.”  Negative comments about the other parent also cause anxiety, fear and increase stress in children.

Tips On How to Avoid Bad Mouthing/Negative Talk About the Other Parent:

*Avoid talking about adult issues (such as the divorce/separation) where children can overhear, or when children are present.

*Similarly, instruct family and friends to avoid talking negative about the other parent in front of the child, or talking about adult issues in front of the child

*Do not tell a child about the other parent’s short comings or give the child your opinion of the other parent

*If you personally are struggling with the end of a relationship, or with your ex – seek appropriate help or support. Do not shift the blame or dump issues onto children. Places of support may include: family, friends, spiritual support, support group, therapist, etc

*Similarly – it’s okay to apologize!

*If you have a problem with your ex, or need to communicate, take it directly to them – not to the child. If communication is a problem you may consider additional help or support such as: spiritual council, community support, therapy, mediation, family, friends, legal help, parenting/family coach etc

ADDITIONAL TIPS/ADVICE: 

How to Talk to Your Kids About Divorce by Jennifer Wolf

Post-Divorce Parenting: Bashing Your Ex is Bad for Your Children by Rosalind Sedacca

Positive Parenting Through Divorce by Lina Guillen

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FOR MORE INFORMATION ON CIARA’S LAWSUIT:

Ciara Drops Defamation Suit Against Future (Rolling Stone)

Ciara ‘decides to drop $15 million defamation lawsuit against ex Future’ (DailyMail.com)

Ciara and Future’s Baby Drama and the Black Mother Double Standard (The Daily Beast, Stereo Williams)

 

 

 

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About Emily Court

Mom & Kids Need "Just Us" To Fight Injustice in Family Court. I blog to raise awareness about problems existing in the family court system, and use my own story as a personal example of how the systemic failures in family court, and the Guardian ad Litem Program, affect families, in an effort to encourage needed reform. "Emily Court" is a survivor of domestic violence and homelessness working to create a better life for her children, in a stable home free of violence. In her efforts to rebuild her life, she has not only encountered harassment and intimidation from her alleged abuser but faced systematic failures in family court that have empowered her alleged abuser and put her children at risk. Emily is fighting to keep her kids safe, and bring them home. Through writing and blogging, Emily is working to raise awareness about domestic violence, and the urgent need for family court reform. She is currently working on a memoir titled "'Til Prayers Are Answered".
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One Response to Lesson Learned from Ciara’s Defamation Lawsuit Against Future: Avoid Bad Mouthing Your Ex

  1. familycourtfemmesfightingcorruption says:

    I thought the greatest gift one could give to one’s child is to unconditionally love the other parent, no matter what. As “dysfunctional” as some families were with whom we grew up, this was the one line that was not crossed by parents, and the worst of them in our time, and even parents who had no meaningful relationship when they became pregnant. The parents then, as much as children have always been used as pawns, still honored the right of the child, and of the other natural parent. I grieve for this generation, and that my son has had to grow-up in such Orwellian, Kafka-esque nightmare of “objective” intentions. These boutique law firms that actively solicit, or target “high net worth divorce and custody” “issues,” such false, illegal, fraudulent forced adoption and “permanency” scams, and where they convince the father and new, or first actual wife or spouse that they are “heroes” (perhaps sometimes the gender is reversed?) have helped to ruin America. We must end this corruption.

    The obscene mechanisms, or system through which the libel and defamation of character, among other things, that forever stigmatize and taint the courageous “hero” mommy transcends into the modern workforce, or, at this point, we shall venture to term it, non-workforce, or non-career. Almost five years after the fact of my son being kidnapped under color of law, this nightmare still haunts me. Combined with false arrests by corrupt, state and local government officials collaborating, or “uniting,” to cover-up their “accidents,” or mistakes which time can never be rectified or gotten back with the children is abhorrent to the federal, The Constitution for The United States of America, Bill of Rights, ratifies and applies directly to the people, and the founding, traditional, historical, thus applicable federal, The Declaration of Independence and Preamble. If it was that way for fathers in the 1980’s, it is much worse now for mothers as the tables have turned in the backlash of lobbyist, grant funded, grant steering vice.

    Oftentimes there are perverse Eugenics-based programs, or pogroms–ties–with local international economic development corporation municipalities, law enforcement, state attorneys general, and child support offices and local workforce and health and human service department agencies that preclude hiring those who have dared to Stand for h/er, and he/r child’s most fundamental US constitutional and natural rights, liberties, and freedoms, to the detriment of “commerce” and “consumerism,” and the child and his relationship with natural mother or father–the NON-GAME ‘Player’ who never “consented to be involved in this heinous Triad, or pyramid-based “no fault” scheme. This non-hiring is truly a problem where it deters (wo)man from ever getting back on her feet as the system was intended and designed. But we will never trade places.

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