On this page
- An email to my mother about the overwhelming stress
- “Encouraging” messages from my brother and father cause a change of plan
- The new plan
- Page specific to my relationship with my brother
- Communication breakdown with my father, July 2011 and April 2012
An email to my mother about the overwhelming stress
On 3 June 2012, I replied to an email that my mom sent me. It discusses some difficult topics such as my relationships with my family, the ARDC, why my refusal to lie is making everything worse, and why I am terrified of the possibility that the ARDC wants to misuse the criminal process to bring bogus criminal charges against me with the hope that I will have to spend time in jail before the charges are dismissed (and because the bogus charges would be rape, that other inmates would beat and/or rape me).
In my email to my mother, I was wrong about one thing and I misunderstood something else that she said. Her reply, below, explains what I was wrong about.
Sent:Tuesday, June 05, 2012 3:24 PM
Subject:Re: FW: HAPPY BIRTHDAY!
It is exceptionally painful that you, my dad, and Dave all think that I committed a crime and/or ethical violation.
I have no idea what your dad thinks, but I do NOT think you committed a crime or ethical violation. I think the Mom’s ego was hurt and she wanted to hurt you back.
I am not currently facing the possibility of going to prison. This is not a criminal proceeding.
Poor terminology on my part. In my mind, living in your car, not being able to work at your profession, not having money and emotional freedom, etc. is like being imprisoned.
My comments were only in hopes of getting you to move on from life in the car.
I only wish I knew how to make this all go away for you. It seems so very sad that you have to endure all this and I feel helpless to do anything in your behalf. I think the world at large is missing something by not having you circulate in it like you had planned.
Thanks for all the info. Can you give me any advice on how to do whatever I can to make your life more bearable and perhaps brighten your days here and there?
“Encouraging” messages from my brother and father cause a change of plan
My hopelessness is not the result of just one issue or event in my life; it is multi-faceted and the issues are intertwined (and I do not care that I used a mixed metaphor). It is certainly true that the ARDC is the largest problem, so today I had planned to share documents about the ARDC debacle. I was preparing documents and making changes, when I received some encouraging messages from my brother.
Via text message:
Wilkinson, Dave: I just left your trial. I don’t understand why you weren’t there. I went to support you. 6/27/12 11:54 AM
Wilkinson, Dave: If there is any way for you to get here, I would strongly urge you to beg for leniency and show respect to the panel, they have only one more witness 6/27/12 11:55 AM
From: David Wilkinson [[email protected]]
Sent: Wednesday, June 27, 2012 12:05 PM
Subject: Court case
I went to your hearing to show support, shocked you weren’t there. There is one witness remaining. I really think you should get there and throw yourself on the panel for leniency.
Sent from my iPhone
Some quick notes:
- It is a hearing not a trial, and the difference is important. There is not a judge or a court—there is a panel. The panel only “finds facts” and makes a recommendation to the Illinois Supreme Court.
- My brother does not understand why I was not at the hearing, but the only way he “understood” that I was homeless was when he went to my old apartment and discovered I did not live there. I had been homeless for five months at that point.
- My brother “went to support” me. I have been homeless for exactly 10 months today. I have not seen my brother in over a year. Letting me use his shower from time-to-time would have been much more support.
- He suggests I should “beg for leniency”. This means that he believes I committed an ethical violation. His knowledge of the situation might be a bit limited, however, considering he did not even know I was homeless for five months.
It gets better. As I was writing the above information, my father sent me an encouraging email.
From: Dan Hogan [[email protected]]
Sent: Wednesday, June 27, 2012 1:37 PM
Subject: your ARDC hearing
I just spoke with David.
He said he sent you and email about being at ARDC hearing.
I got to thinking about it �. and thought I’d express a similar sentiment to you� —- i.e. if you have shown up for your hearing you could have at least defended yourself.
David reminded me of your blog. I just scanned it for a few moments and read some of your posts.
I wonder�do you put the same energy into finding a job or getting yourself out of hopelessness as you do in writing?
When your $600 is gone, then what will happens?
Dan Hogan, CMF, CPF
Lord & Hogan LLC
1 – 713 – 454-7660 USA Direct Line
1 – 713 – 249-1365 USA Cell Phone
1 – 713 – 523-4200
Houston, Texas USA
Some quick notes:
- My father is not a lawyer. He does not know whether or not this statement is true, “if you have shown up for your hearing you could have at least defended yourself.” Nevertheless, he believes that he knows whether it is true or not.
- I love my brother, and it does not matter that he is my half-brother: we have different fathers. It is fascinating to me that my father and my brother spend more time communicating with each other about my life, even though they are not related, than they spend communicating with me.
- Why did anyone need to remind my father of my website? I have had it since 2001.
- Why did my father need to skim my website? (And why was “for a few moments” sufficient?) I was fired more than 28 months ago. I received my first communication from the ARDC over 26 months ago. Why does my father not already know about everything on this website?
- This is not a blog. On this page, in the very first section after the table of contents (How the information is “organized”), I wrote “This is not a blog”—it is even underlined and links to a page explaining what a blog is. This may seem trivial but this is exactly how my father treats all of the details of my life right now. When he bothers to listen to what I am saying “for a few moments”, he rarely hears me. In this situation, “This is not a blog” was one of the first things he could have read, it was underlined, and it was semi-bolded, plus I offered another way of thinking about my website (a memoir) and I provided a link to a detailed explanation of a blog. I use links and bold to make it easy to skim for the ideas that I think are important. He claims he skimmed my website “and read some of [my] posts” but like nearly every other fact I share with him, he seems to be immune to understanding the facts.
- He wrote, “I wonder…”. Why does he wonder? Why does he not know how much effort I put into writing, “finding a job or getting [myself] out of hopelessness”? I have told him.
- “When your $600 is gone, then what will happens?” For a moment, forget that he is my father: pretend he is only a business acquaintance. He co-signed some of my school loans, because I am over a year behind in payments and it was hurting his credit rating he is making payments on the loans. If he has to pay all of the loans, it will cost him $82,094.00. I was fired 28 months ago. During that time, of all of the people in the world, he probably had the most power to help prevent me from being in my current situation. Forget that he is my dad—why did he not act sooner to protect himself from having to pay $82,094.00? (He also co-signed my car loan, so the amount could be higher.)
The new plan
Honestly, when my brother sent me the text message, I was devastated. The text message itself is not devastating, but the larger issue of my relationship with my brother is heartbreaking, and the even larger issue of my relationships with all of my family members is . . . I do not even have a word for it yet. When I received it, I lost all of my motivation to share the ARDC documents: I just wanted to crawl under a rock and be alone. But either I am too big or the rocks here are too small, so crawling under a rock is not an option.
Since I have lost my motivation to share ARDC information because these messages from my brother and my father have reopened fresh wounds, my new plan is to write and share documents about my family relationships. I have only shared a few things, so it is probably difficult to understand why these words could hurt so much. If I share more, then maybe things will make sense.
9 July 2012: I have discovered new facts related to the ARDC. (No matter how bad things are, they can always get worse.) While some of the facts help me understand why some things happened, a few of these newly-discovered facts are so disturbing that I cannot comprehend them. I have not added much to the website since I discovered them because it is soul-crushing to see that some people will expend so much effort to hurt someone else and that they will be so happy when they destroy that person’s life, happiness, and hope. If I am able to add anything new, the main reason is because I feel I owe a duty to some other people to try to improve things in my life.
Page specific to my relationship with my brother
Nearly every page on this website is incomplete, and the page about my relationship with my brother is not an exception, but it does have more details than are written here.
Communication breakdown with my father, July 2011 and April 2012
Before I added the text from OkCupid, this was the starting point for my story. These emails show some of the many other issues that contributed to my hopelessness—some of the other straws that were on my back.] Because I cannot think of a natural starting point, I will simply begin with a recent event: an email from my father. I am not trying to demonize my father by sharing this email with you. This email happens to touch on a lot of issues of my hopelessness, but I do not think that my father is a bad person or that he necessarily did something wrong.
I believe that this email (or set of emails, actually) illustrates how even in nearly ideal conditions, communication can break down. My father is a good communicator, a good planner, and good with money. He has a financial interest in my loans (as a co-signer), and he is my dad: he really does care what happens to me. I am (or was) generally pro-active about communicating with other people, setting expectations, and trying to give people the information they need so they can make decisions. Those values were reinforced by my father, and he not only believes in those values, his business is based on teaching other people how to implement those values and skills.
Despite all of these advantages, we have been unable to effectively communicate with each other about my life. Maybe we have had this problem for a long time, and maybe the problem really only extends to the difficulties (as opposed to good things) I have in my life: I am not sure. We certainly have been unable to effectively communicate with each other about the problems in my life that started to develop in 2007, my last year of law school working towards a Juris Doctorate. The major problem at that time was that I did not have a post-graduation job. Many of my issues today can be traced back to the fact that as a successful law student, I did not have a job waiting for me after I graduated (in May 2008). These emails, however, only explicitly talk about what was happening starting around February 2010.