Archive for December, 2011

Dear Lili,

It’s Christmas Eve now. Christmas always makes me think of you because it was always a very special time for us. I wish I could see you again this Christmas, but I feel in my heart that someday soon father and daughter will be reunited. In the meantime, I’m sending out these Christmas wishes to you and hoping that they can somehow take the place of the presents I’d like to send you, but cannot, for reasons you’ll understand when you get older. This post is my 2011 Christmas present to you, and I hope that it brings you some happiness and helps you to remember how close you and I used to be.

There will always be a lantern burning in the window here when you decide you want to find your way home again. Your Daddy will be waiting for you with open arms, as I always have.

Merry Christmas, Bubby.

Love always,

Your Dad 8)


Christmas 2002

You and I spent Christmas 2002 alone. Your mother was in New York with a friend that Christmas season. I tried to make it a very special Christmas for you. We had a lot of holiday fun together.

One of my students, a woman named Nancy from Columbia, invited us over to her house that year for a Christmas party with her family and other friends. She and her husband had a couple of little boys and you all had fun playing games together, I remember.

Here are a bunch of pictures from that day. I wonder if you remember.

Lili and Nancy’s little boys

Lili and Nancy

Playing computer games

Nancy’s husband on the right and a friend

Getting ready for dinner

Let’s eat everybody!

Looks yummy!

For me?


Nancy passing out presents

After the party we went back home. The next day was Christmas Eve, and we were preparing fro Santa to come.

You had written a letter to Santa Claus before, of course, telling him what you wanted for Christmas.

That year you wanted a Chicken Dance Elmo, some Winnie-the-Pooh CD-ROMs, a Zooboomafoo video, magnetic building blocks, and some other things you had seen in the store.

That evening we read The Night Before Christmas together. I made a Clear File book for you of the poem with pictures I had downloaded from the Internet. On that Christmas Eve I read it to you just like Poppie had done a few years earlier when we went to visit them in Florida.








After that, we wrote a note to Santa Claus to leave with the milk and cookies we left for him and the carrots we left for his reindeer.


We also decorated the house some more with some drawings you made

a cardboard snowman you made

and some little decorations you cut out from some shiny paper.

Then you went to bed so Santa would come and bring you some presents!

The next day when you woke up all the milk and cookies and the carrots were gone, and Santa had left all of the things you had asked for and more.

You had lots of fun opening everything.

Christmas morning 2002

Opening your first present

Happy Lili

Opening more presents

Little Princess

Playing with your new Winnie-the-Pooh CD-Roms

Lili and our little tree

That Christmas we also made hearts for each other with this plastic bead kit Nancy gave you at the party. After you arrange the little beads, you melt them together with an iron to make one piece. We made two hearts, and you kept one and I kept the other. My heart is still hanging above the bed. I wonder if you still have yours and if it reminds you of your Dad the way my heart reminds me of you.

Like I always say to you, “You are always in my heart.”


Christmas 2003

Christmas 2003 came after your mother and I had broken up. At that point, we were only seeing each other maybe once a month or so. We were supposed to spend five days together but your mother said that you had a doctor’s appointment on the 26th and that you had to go back to Makuhari. I told her I would take you myself and then you could return with me to Higashi-Nakano. But that wasn’t going to happen. I also suggested that after your appointment you come back to your first home and spend the rest of the season with me, returning to Chiba for the New Year. But that wasn’t going to happen, either. So we only wound up spending about 30 hours together that Christmas. Still, as always, I was grateful for any time I could spend with my daughter.

Back in November, you had sent Santa a wish list.

So I planned a Princess Christmas for you. I ordered a handmade Indian dress special for you from a Native American woman in Wyoming. And Santa went a little crazy and brought you all kinds of Disney princess things — dresses, a princess castle, etc.

On Christmas Eve we sat down and wrote our usual note to Santa to leave with the milk and cookies for him and carrots for the reindeer.

After he delivered your presents, Santa wrote you a little note back as well. When you woke up the next morning, you were really surprised to see all the presents.

Here are a bunch of pictures from that Christmas Day.

Santa’s helper

Finding Nemo

Making a Christmas drawing

Lili’s Christmas drawing 2003

I bought a much bigger tree that year for us

Christmas decorations

Happy Lili

Lots of Barbies that year

Chocolates for Daddy from Lili

Merry Christmas, Daddy!

I kept the decoration from the box,

and still have some of the chocolates in the freezer

We know Santa came because the milk and cookies and carrots were all gone!

Princess Lili in one of her new dresses

Playing with your new Barbies (Ken is dressed for surfing. Ha Ha)

The castle came with a stand that the dolls could “dance” on when

you moved it around while it played “Once Upon a Dream” from Cinderella

So happy with my new toys!

Indian Princess Lili

Shaking the turtle shell rattle and doing an Indian dance

Daddy’s card – outside

Daddy’s card – inside

Enjoying our Christmas cake

Daddy and his Little Princess


Christmas 2004

Christmas 2003 was to be the last Christmas we ever spent together. About two months earlier I started getting messages from your mother every time I asked to see you that said “Lili doesn’t want to see you.” Christmas 2004 was not to be. I was really pretty sad around this time and had to get away from Japan for a while, so I booked a trip to Koh Samui, Thailand, where I spent Christmas and New Year’s that year.

But just as I was leaving the house for the airport, the phone rang. Somebody was trying to send a fax. At first, the fax jammed and the fax didn’t come through. But I fixed the paper and the phone rang again. This is what I got — a Merry Christmas fax from you!

It made me smile and cry at the same time. I smiled because you got the presents I sent and because you remembered me that Christmas, and cry because it was the first Christmas I couldn’t spend with you.


Anyway, since I can’t send you presents anymore, this post is my Christmas 2011 gift to you — one of love and memories of the happy times we once shared together. It’s been very difficult for me even doing this, and the tears are flowing, to be sure. I don’t want you to feel bad, but I do want you to know how much I miss you.

Every year I still put a Christmas tree. Here is the really big tree I got a few years ago and which I decorated last week.

And I decorate a corner for you with a decoration you made for Christmas 2003, the Santa hat you wore then, and the Christmas stocking from your very first Christmas in Florida in 1998. Because no matter what happens, you are always with me.

And I always put up prints of your old Christmas drawings as well.

I’ll never give up on you. Lili. If you knock on my door tomorrow, or next month, or 10 years from now, I will welcome you home with open arms.

I hope you are having a wonderful Christmas this year, and that the New Year brings you all the joy and happiness you wish for.

You are always in my heart, Princess Lili.

I love you, always and forver,


Merry Christmas 2011!


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US girl reunited with father after 4 years in Japan

CHICAGO — Nearly four years after his ex-wife spirited their daughter away to Japan and blocked nearly all his attempts to see her, a Wisconsin doctor welcomed his little girl home Friday — just in time for Christmas. “My heart is pounding, 

Daughter in custody rift returns from Japan

Kansas City Star
By BRUCE VIELMETTI MILWAUKEEJust in time for Christmas, a Fox Point man was reunited Friday with his young daughter whose mother fled with her to Japan nearly four years ago at the start of the couple’s divorce. The girl’s return also freed her mother 

Fox Point Dad Gets Daughter Back From Japan In Time For Christmas

WISN Milwaukee
MILWAUKEE — A 9-year-old girl is back with her father in Milwaukee following an international custody battle between an American parent and the Japanese government. It was a battle that many other American parents have never won. 

Fox Point man reunited with abducted daughter

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
By Bruce Vielmetti of the Journal Sentinel Just in time for Christmas, a Fox Point man was reunited Friday with his young daughter whose mother fled with her to Japan nearly four years ago at the start of the couple’s divorce. 

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For Immediate Release

Contact: Patrick Braden, CEO, Global Future

(213) 392-5872 or global.future@yahoo.com


Kidnapped Milwaukee Girl Returns from Japan in Time for Christmas

Fox Point Doctor’s Daughter is First-Ever Abducted American Child Returned from Japan

WHAT: Press Conference to announce and discuss the return of Dr. Moises Garcia’s nine year-old daughter from Japan, following her kidnapping from Milwaukee in 2008.

WHEN: Saturday, December 24, 2011, 11 AM

WHERE: Pfister Hotel, Kennedy Room Conference Center, 424 East Wisconsin Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53202.

WHO: Dr. Moises Garcia; Patrick Braden, Founder, Global Future; Takashi Ikeda, Japanese Attorney for Garcia family in Japan; possible speakers to include; Milwaukee County District Attorney (representative to be determined) and Attorney James Sakar (Wisconsin Attorney). Possible VIP’s may be added pending availability.

MEDIA INTERVIEWS: All speakers will be available for interviews following the press conference.

ABOUT GLOBAL FUTURE: Since 2006, Patrick Braden, Dr. Garcia, and Global Future’s member parents, whose children were kidnapped from the United States to Japan and other countries, have lobbied over 600 days on Capitol Hill and held over 2,000 meetings with the administration, members of Congress, law enforcement officials, and NGOs. Global Future’s efforts have been responsible for the passage of legislation, key public policy research, and improvements in the U.S. government’s handling of international kidnappings. Global Future parents assist new members in communicating with public officials and agencies, and with individual case management, protocols, and strategies. Global Future publishes and distributes various materials including our 32-page magazine American Citizen Children Kidnapped by Japan, which U.S. officials acknowledge as a very strong tool in their work on the international kidnapping issue.


Global Future: The Parents’ Council on International Children’s Policy

P.O Box 861892, Los Angeles, California 90086

Phone: (213) 392-5872 global.future@yahoo.com

Global Future advocates for every child’s right to two loving parents.


PDF download available here:

MEDIA ADVISORY Final_Version 12-22-2011


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Caught Between Parents

Supporting children through the challenges of divorce
by Amy J.L. Baker, Ph.D.

Parental Alienation: Prevention is the key

Parental alienation: Prevention is the key
Published on April 14, 2011 by Amy J.L. Baker, Ph.D. in Caught Between Parents

Parental alienation is a set of strategies that parents use to undermine and interfere with a child’s relationship with his or her other parent. This often but not always happens when parents are engaged in a custody battle over the children.

There is no one definitive set of behaviors that constitute parental alienation but research with both parents and children has revealed a core set of 17 primary parental alienation strategies, including bad-mouthing the other parent, limiting contact with that parent, erasing the other parent from the life and mind of the child (forbidding discussion and pictures of the other parent), forcing child to reject the other parent, creating the impression that the other parent is dangerous, forcing the child to choose, and belittling and limiting contact with the extended family of the targeted parent.

Taken together, these 17 parental alienation strategies work to create psychological distance between the child and the targeted parent such that the relationship becomes conflict ridden and eventually non-existent, as the child is empowered to cut that parent off completely. Each of these strategies serve to A) further the child’s cohesion and alignment with the alienating parent; B) create psychological distance between the child and the targeted parent; C) intensify the targeted parent’sanger and hurt over the child’s behavior; and D) incite conflict between the child and the targeted parent should the targeted parent challenge or react to the child’s behavior.

Parents who try to alienate their child from his or her other parent convey a three-part message to the child: (1) I am the only parent who loves you and you need me to feel good about yourself, (2) the other parent is dangerous and unavailable, and (3) pursuing a relationship with that parent jeopardizes your relationship with me.

Children who succumb to the pressure and ally themselves with one parent against the other often exhibit a set of behaviors that have become known as parental alienation syndrome:
(1) The first manifestation is a campaign of denigration against the targeted parent. The child becomes obsessed with hatred of the targeted parent (in the absence of actual abuse or neglect that would explain such negative attitudes).
(2) Weak, frivolous, and absurd rationalizations for the depreciation of the targeted parent. The objections made in the campaign of denigration are often not of the magnitude that would lead a child to hate a parent, such as slurping soup or serving spicy food.
(3) Lack of ambivalence about the alienating parent. The child expresses no ambivalence about the alienating parent, demonstrating an automatic, reflexive, idealized support of him or her.
(4) The child strongly asserts that the decision to reject the other parent is her own. This is what is known as the “Independent Thinker” phenomenon.
(5) Absence of guilt about the treatment of the targeted parent. Alienated children will make statements such as, “He doesn’t deserve to see me.”
(6) Reflexive support for the alienating parent in the parental conflict. There is no willingness or attempt to be impartial when faced with inter-parental conflicts.
(7) Use of borrowed scenarios. These children often make accusations towards the targeted parent that utilize phrases and ideas adopted wholesale from the alienating parent. And, finally,
(8) The hatred of the targeted parent spreads to his or her extended family. Not only is the targeted parent denigrated, despised, and avoided but so too are his/her entire family. Formerly beloved grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins are suddenly avoided and rejected. When children exhibit these 8 behaviors the most likely explanation is the manipulation of the favored parent.

Once children exhibit these behaviors much of the damage is done. Prevention is critical as it is easier to stop children from becoming alienated than it is to undo the alienation once the children have adopted false ideas and feelings about the rejected parent. For this reason, parents who are concerned about the use of alienation strategies on the part of the other parent should become educated as quickly as possible about different options for responding to parental alienation.



Resources for targeted parents are available at www.amyjlbaker.com.


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