[Warning: Potentially Triggering Content]
This story has, unfortunately, only gotten worse…
Back in January we reported on the shocking news that Josh Homme‘s young sons had filed a restraining order against him, claiming the rocker was “scary.” The Queens of the Stone Age frontman, the 5- and 10-year-old claimed, drank and drove with them in the car, was physically and verbally abusive, and talked about killing their mother’s current boyfriend.
Their mom is singer Brody Dalle, frontwoman of The Distillers. The rock stars separated in 2019 after 14 years of marriage, and the split has only gotten nastier over the years. Their 50/50 custody agreement apparently disintegrated in 2021. And things only got worse the next year. Brody previously got a restraining order herself, claiming Homme had been violent with her. Specifically she testified he head-butted her so hard once that she “saw stars.”
But the most upsetting part for the mom is the fact her children were taken from her.
In March 2022, her children were taken directly from the courthouse to what’s called a “parental reunification camp”. This was ordered after Homme complained his ex was “alienating him.” Both she and the 15-year-old daughter they share had successfully gotten restraining orders against the man after accusations of violence. And yet he seemed to win — and the young boys were taken, apparently against their will, as you can see in an extremely upsetting video:
Orrin and Wolf were taken to a place called Building Family Bridges. And their mother has not seen them since. Just dread-inducing…
That was about 16 months ago. Or, as Brody put it on her Instagram a few days ago, 475 days. She captioned a pic with her sons:
“My everything. My reason for living. 475 days. 1 year, 3 months, 18 days. 15 months,18 days. 41,040,000 seconds. 684,000 minutes. 11,400 hours. Into the black. Gone. Void. I’ll never get back. And for what? I’m not a criminal. For all my punk rock cred I’ve never even been arrested. Some speeding tickets, Slapped by a cop once when I was 12, but other than that, zilch. This is punishment, for reporting what they said, trying to protect. I tried to make it stop for a year and a half, until they refused.to.go. Testified. Begged. Pleaded. Sobbed. What would you do? everything, anything I bet.”
Damn straight. She lamented:
“I’m f**king broken. This has shattered me into a thousand pieces. For a long time, I couldn’t get out of bed. I contemplated what the point of going on was. I’ve been filled with so much pain and fear for so long. Fear of that split second mistake where you can’t go back. No one can sustain that state. No one should ever. I let it go. I released it. I found the ladder of light. Get the f**k up and fight for your life. For them. Always.”
We can’t imagine what it must do to a parent to have their children legally taken from them — and put in the hands of the person from whom the law is simultaneously protecting you! It makes no sense!
How did this happen? In a followup post on her private IG, she laid out the facts:
“In February 2022 after an 8 day trial, I was granted a 3 year domestic violence restraining order. You didn’t hear about it because I didn’t go to the press, I didn’t parade it around, tooting it from some triumphant horn…because, it’s been f**king terrifying and devastating. 3 weeks later, they took one of my kids. A month after that, under temporary guise they took my other two. Textbook to a T… Do not be fooled by the pr and the smoke and mirror’s magic trick of don’t look over here.. look over there… darvo textbook insanity, they’re all the same. We all see you. My story is not unique and it is not rare, it is happening to protective mothers (and some protective fathers) everywhere. There are thousands of us. Hundreds of thousands of us. Children are the collateral. Everyday collateral. What they suffer will make your hair stand on end. Many protective parents have lost children forever, in horrific unconscionable ways. If you have never been held in the heart pounding, hellish vice like grip of family court, and If you have never been accused of the quack debunked, looney and extremely dangerous claim of parental alienation and with zero evidence because there was none…..please, hold your tongue, you have no idea.
She went on to blast the parental reunification camps like the one her boys were sent to:
“False claims of parental alienation, wielded as weapons by abusers in retaliation for their exposure, have prompted a profound and alarming realization. This movement is revealing the systemic injustices and manipulation that occur within the family court system. Through the collective efforts of advocates and survivors, the truth is emerging, dismantling the facade of false allegations and vindicating those who have been unjustly silenced.”
“The utilization of the Reid interrogation technique on vulnerable children, who often lack support and viable alternatives, is distressingly employed by organizations such as Family Bridges, Turning Points, and Transitioning Families. These tactics are highly concerning as they involve coercing children into retracting abuse. Furthermore, children are subjected to the distressing experience of watching videos in which other children recant their own abuse. To compound matters, these children are then instructed not to discuss or disclose the events, citing a moratorium on the past. Such practices raise serious ethical and moral concerns surrounding the well-being and rights of these children. They are cut off from their mothers and protective fathers entirely sometimes in cruel, unyielding and never-ending circumstances. Children refuse to go and then they are forced, and then they are kept away from the other parent….Make it make sense.”
Brody is far from the first to speak out against these places…
In November 2022, a young woman named Ally Cable spoke out after being subjected to the Building Family Bridges reunification therapy against her will. Ally, who has since become the Youth Initiative Founder for the Center for Judicial Excellence, was just 16 years old when she was “held captive” for days:
“My sister and I were kidnapped from a courthouse in Johnson County Kansas and transported to a remote city in Montana.”
Family Bridges’ website calls it “the original reunification program and the gold standard for alienated children.” There’s that word again. “Alienated” children. These are children that accused a parent of abuse — and they’re being treated as though they couldn’t possibly be telling the truth.
Ally says she and her sister had been abused by their father. But the reunification camp forced them to say that was a lie — and to denounce their mother:
“We were coerced into saying that our safe parent, our mom, had brainwashed us into believing that we were abused.”
The Family Bridges program isolated the young girls from the outside world for four days — but they were not allowed to see their mother for months afterward. Ally and her sister were forced to live with the father they had already accused of abuse — and she says he went on to physically and sexually abuse them.
Why would the Family Bridges program do this? Why would they help an abuser? What’s the answer to 99 out of a hundred questions: money. The company were paid about $40,000 by Ally’s father to “deprogram” her, she says.
When she turned 18 Ally says she got out of there and didn’t look back — she hasn’t spoken to her father since.
There Are More…
You’d think this business would be exposed. The sad fact is… it has. In 2017 The Washington Post did an exposé on Family Bridges, speaking to children from seven other cases. All said they had a similar experience — taken from the courthouse, escorted against their will across state lines, isolated for four days, told to reject their other parent in favor of the abusive one — and of course, being kept from the other parent (usually the mother) for many months.
These kids were taken from all over the country — Michigan, Seattle, Miami, New Jersey, Utah, Montana, and Virginia — but the result was always the same. You can read about all their cases HERE.
It sounds like Brody is spot on with her judgment of these parental reunification camps. Our question now is why any judge would send a child here!
We’ll give Brody the last word here. She ended her most recent series of posts about what happened to her children by writing:
“Lastly, While I know full well that I am not without flaws and I have made many mistakes throughout my life, the actions taken to separate me from my children by paid strangers and individuals who have never been a part of their lives is an unjustifiable and heart-wrenching ordeal. It is astounding and disheartening to think that individuals who profit from court cases hold the power to determine whether I can have a relationship with my own children, whom I have carried, given birth to, raised and nurtured and profoundly loved throughout their entire lives. The blatant and deeply disturbing imbalance of authority in this situation is gravely unsettling.”
What do YOU think, Perezcious readers??
If you have sincere cause to suspect child abuse, call the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child or 1-800-422-4453, or go to www.childhelp.org.
If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence, help is available. Consider calling the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-7233, or text START to 88788, or go to https://www.thehotline.org/.
[Image via WENN/Avalon/Brody Dalle/Instagram.]