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January 24th, 2012 by FAF Staff
Goldie Hawn and Bill Hudson, circa 1976.

Bill Hudson, father of Kate and Oliver Hudson and the ex-husband of Goldie Hawn, has authored a new book, Two Versions, in which he claims he was alienated from his children by his ex-wife. According to Amazon.com:

Bill Hudson of the Hudson brothers, ex-spouse of Goldie Hawn, explores in this book aspects of the family dealing with fame, marriage, divorce, and the ugliness that can cause relationships between parent and child to become stilted…he covers the bitter side of divorce, his own foibles, as well as such issues as parental alienation and fathers’ rights. Not a ‘Hollywood tell-all’, but instead an emotional outreach to those who have been in or are in the same situations Bill saw.

In a recent appearance on Good Day LA, Hudson said he was unfairly portrayed as a “bad father” who “walked away” from his children. He claims he has tried everything to reestablish a relationship with his children, but that Kate has “followed the path of her mom,” accusing him of abandoning this children, etc. He sadly noted, “I’ve never met my grandchildren.” To watch the interview, click here.

Bill Hudson's new book, "Two Versions."

Hudson quotes Fathers and Families Executive Director Glenn Sacks extensively in the book. Hudson wrote:

[I]n addition to educating people, Glenn and his organization actually work to implement change…It’s refreshing to see them use the media to provide a voice for fathers, the same media that often created strife in my situation. Fathers and Families also gets involved in lobbying for family court reform…and are…changing some of the ways family issues are handled within our legal system.

As in my case, Glenn said that a parent (usually the mother) often decides they want to bring in a new parental figure to create an ideal family unit. Just as Goldie encouraged my children to address Kurt as “Pa,” it happens to many others after a divorce. “We see that a lot,” says Glenn. “The woman attempts to make the father a blank space in their family history. She replaces him with a new dad and convinces the children to minimize the role of the biological father.” That puts the father in a no-win situation.

“The more time the children are in mom’s care, which is usually most of the time since she often gets sole custody, the more likely the father will be alienated from his children.” If fathers keep their mouths shut and don’t fight it, they are accused of abandoning their kids. If they speak up for their rights, they are the bad guy for disrupting the new family.

Glenn points out that…with celebrity divorces, the media often describes the divorce as a “nasty custody battle” or “messy.” This is misleading in that it draws a moral equivalence between a father trying to get joint custody so he can share parenting with the mother of his child, and a mother demanding sole custody. There’s a huge moral distinction between these two positions, and fathers are often described as being contentious or litigious simply because they’re trying to remain a meaningful part of their children’s lives—a fact usually lost on the unsuspecting public…

There is good news though. Based on all of the cases he has seen, Glenn says, “It’s not uncommon for alienated children to reunite with fathers when they are older. Sometimes it’s a spontaneous reunification brought on because of a life-altering event that makes one party reach out and try to reconnect. It could be money for college, the birth of their own child, or they feel the absence of a grandparent. Sometimes children grow up and go through their own divorces and then find out what can happen. It helps them see things differently.”

I’m also thrilled that Glenn and the Fathers and Families organization will continue to help promote not just father’s rights, but family rights. Their position is that if both parents are fit, once there is a divorce or an end to a relationship, custody should be shared.

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