Unfortunately I cant afford an attorney so I'm forced to represent myself in a divorce and child custody case. I'm attempting to cite all methods of abuse and neglect our child has been exposed to. The one above is one of many examples. This certainly was not a one time experience. I've been accused of abuse myself and am attempting to point out all the actions of the other party. your help would be appreciated the other party has a free attorney through an agency that works with victims of abuse.
When I have a client write a declaration I don't allow the client to swear in the declaration. Instead, I'll suggest something like, "and then (other parent) used a really vulgar curse to describe (child)" . . . or something like that. I do not believe that actual slang belongs in a document being filed with the court. Others may disagree with me, but I think you want to emphasize what is coming out of the other parent's mouth, without engaging in potty-mouth yourself. Some judges are really offended by swearing.
That said, the argument you appear to be raising is not "I am not a DV perpetrator", it is more akin to, "she said it first" or "she did it too" which is not as good of an argument. You will not get what you want by admitting tacitly you did what you were accused of for ANY reason, no matter how good.
I know you do not want to hear this, but you really need a lawyer. This is your family and your child and your ability to parent your child you are watching disappear before your eyes. The only good way to salvage this situation is to level the playing field. Sell something, ask your parents for help, go to a friend, but don't try to defend DV allegations alone - it is a complex area of the law!
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You cannot afford not to be represented. Please consult with a local seasoned family law attorney as soon as possible.
I agree with the other attorneys, the issues you are presenting are very complex and you would be best served by obtaining professional help. Have you tried contacting the King County Bar Association (assumed based on your location). Many bar associations keep lists of attorneys who are willing to work at reduced rates for clients who qualify for low bono or moderate means programs. This may be something you might want to look into.
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