This topic contains 11 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by Mike Hall 1 week, 1 day ago.
June 9, 2019 at 3:32 pm #56584
By Sandy . . . As I write this, I have been home less than ten minutes after the conclusion of our Houston conference, our eleventh. It has been a mos
[See the full post at: NARSOL conference 2019 is now a memory]
June 9, 2019 at 6:04 pm #56587
Sandy! What an awesome experience…this was my first NARSOL conference, and I was NOT disapointed. In fact, as I told several co-attendees, I had not realized how stressed and guarded I’ve been living these past 15 years until I arrived and discovered that I did not have to guard my heart, my head, or my self in this crowd. I felt like I was living real again, like I’d been holding my breath so long I forgot what it was like to breath freely. We shared, we consoled, we rejoyced and we cried together, for each other, and for our families, and for ourselves. It was truly cathartic.
Most of all, the presentation inspired hope and renewed faith, while a the time being grounded in reality. So many new friends who felt like lifetime old friends…no, more like extended family I was getting to know for the first time. The love and acceptance was restorative. And the information was extensive. This was like the ultimate Fearless Group experience! And when I get home to Virginia, I hope to infect my fearless group friends with some of the benefits of attending a NARSOL conference offered to me this year. It was a blessing to go. Next year in Raleigh I hope to caravan as many fearless group members as I can so we can all share in the catharartic relief together!
June 9, 2019 at 9:44 pm #56589
NARSOL friends and family,
Best ever conference!
(My fourth; NARSOL’s eleventh)
The bar is high for Raleigh 2020!
Love to all.
June 10, 2019 at 3:24 am #56595
I’m sorry, but how does all of this help those that have to register? As more and more laws are getting past, and more and more people are jobless struggling in their lives, how does this extravagant meeting help those people? This same thing could’ve been accomplished via teleconference.
June 10, 2019 at 3:34 am #56599
Hi Matt, I remember a couple people saying something similar last year. It’s what prompted me to reply for the first time. If you’ve never been to a real conference where professionals meet to network, get inspired, and to inspire others, you simply can’t understand. Take our word for it, there is huge benefit to unity and sharpening one another. Coming out of the conference, I and my two local colleagues that attended were both inspired and educated to do new things to reach out and advocate, challenge, and support others. The conference is a workshop and laboratory for those of us who want to make a real difference. I highly recommend you try to attend one. The value is beyond what you are assuming, and the cost is really low compared to other similar events. I left the last breakout group and began drafting about half a dozen new plans to add to what my colleagues and I are doing to advocate in our home state of Virginia, and carried back new ci tact’s and direct advice from experts to give to my fellow fearless group members. That is REAL HELP for those who have to register. We learned strategies to deregister, lobby, advocate, assist, form groups, and much more. Real help that 200 of us can now carry back to our home states and provide to as many of our fellow RCs as will listen. What a great opportunity. I will most definitely be there in Raleigh in 2020! I hope you’ll join me. Charlie.
June 10, 2019 at 12:39 pm #56609
I don’t think the same thing could be accomplished via teleconference. There were so many interactions going on simultaneously, people telling their stories, people listening, small groups brainstorming, sharing and devising strategies to change laws. A lot more interaction than a teleconference. It is true that it is expensive for members of a national group to gather in one place, and many people just cannot be there. However, the conference moves around the county, and if it is ever near you, I definitely recommend it.
On the other hand, the time spent planning the conference that could always be spent in other ways to try to change sex offense laws. There’s always a trade-off. However, it seems that NARSOL does a pretty good job of attacking the sex offense laws using a variety of methods.
June 10, 2019 at 9:16 am #56604
This is my third conference and, as usual, it was superb. I always come away partly broken-hearted at hearing more people talk about the trauma and injustice they or a loved one has experienced. But I am also inspired and energized by the speakers and attendees. Thanks to Paul Dubbeling, I now know exactly what to include in my son’s removal from registry petition. Lenore Skenazy taught us, in a most entertaining way, how to write an effective OP-ED, which I will use soon. Each presentation I attended was excellent. Hotel deal was exceptional. Thanks to the people who worked so hard to put this together.
June 10, 2019 at 10:12 am #56606
As I sat waiting for my flight yesterday, then during the flight, and again this morning when I woke up and began my day here in my Charlotte, NC office, I continue to think about how fantastic the conference in Houston was! Paul Dubbeling never ceases to amaze me with his knowledge and presentation skills, and our last presenter on Sunday morning, Guy Hamilton…just WOW….what a heartfelt story that got to us all as he shared it. I’ll be showing some of these to my wife once they are up on the website in the near future, and plan to bring her with me next year when the conference is in Raleigh, NC. It is these kinds of experiences you want to share with your loved ones! Thanks to the NARSOL board and all whom worked to make this conference better and better each year!
June 10, 2019 at 12:39 pm #56610
I was only able to attend on Saturday and not all day but I’m glad I was able to see a few familiar faces again, maybe next year I can attend the entire conference. Two things stand out though; One is, maybe it’s me, but I can sense a “shame” as a “Registered Citizen”. I’ve been to many conferences where I am wanting to be visible but who wants to walk around a Hotel with a bunch of monsters! Second, did anyone notice the irony of the group of young girls gathering in the adjacent Hall? OMG…I can hear the Headlines now: “Teens put a risk at Houston Hotel!” But the real Headline should be: “Not a single girl was Assaulted by visiting Registered Sex Offenders!”……Hope to see everyone in Raleigh..
June 10, 2019 at 4:15 pm #56616
Thank You, Sandy!
What caught my eye in this is the following:
“Lenore, in her speech, took us back to her beginning involvement with our advocacy and how she very early recognized the sexual offense registry and all that it has spawned as another example of what she calls “worst first thinking,” which is, in any situation, imagining the worst possible outcome there could be and then proceeding as though that thing were virtually sure to happen.”
How many times have you said better safe than sorry? I see this on the posts allot when referring to sex offenders from people who agree with the registry. This is exactly what the registry is, it is “better safe than sorry” without the safe, and without any concern for the damages inflicted on the innocent in fear that they might become guilty at a later date. Just because someone committed a crime in the past does not make them guilty of future crimes no matter how many fake stats you throw at it. Keep up the good works!
June 10, 2019 at 5:48 pm #56630
The Houston conference was an inspiration, an education, and an opportunity for truly meaningful relationship building and professional networking that far exceeded my expectations. It’s impossible to pick even a few highlights that do justice to the value of this NARSOL convention (my first.)
But one thing I have to say is that until now, I never thought I’d find any true HEROES to emulate. To my great surprise, I encountered three speakers whose example challenged me to be my best self as I pursue my mission of healing and preventing sexual abuse: Paul Dubbeling, Lenore Skenazy, and Guy Hamilton-Smith.
Yet I’m not holding these inspiring people up as somehow “ideal” or “perfect.” A common theme of the conference both in the presentations and out in private discussions was how we are all perfectly imperfect humans. Yes, as Paul Dubbeling so eloquently pointed out, our “enemies” are the irrationality, fear, and retributive and reactionary impulses behind our counterproductive sexual abuse laws – but we all sometimes slip into these weaknesses, so really we have a lot in common with those on the “other side.”
Now more than ever I realize we can save everyone a lot of trouble by just owning our humanity and not getting hung up on flaws, but rather looking for the best in people, starting with ourselves. And if we want people to see beyond our labels to the precious people we are, we need to set the example.
June 10, 2019 at 9:03 pm #56634
Wow, sounds like a blast. Unfortunately my PO would not approve my travel or else I surely would have been there! You can bet I will be for the 15th, if not before.
I am so glad NARSOL is here and am especially grateful for those advocates who fight for a cause that is not their own. It takes special courage to embrace our struggle. Thanks to all who attended.
June 11, 2019 at 10:22 pm #56683
It was so good to see the wonderful women behind all the great articles that you write. Like I said, I always look forward to each and everyone. I was only able to attend Sat and Sun. I have to say that I learned a lot. I wished that I would have been there all the days to learn more. Thank you to all, for all that you, everyone involved did. It was well worth the money. One day I will get my grandson off the registry, or change the laws, or both!
Thank you all!