Saturday, December 31, 2016

Amanda Topinka: When You're the Victim of Libel, Harassment, and Public Humiliation


I’ve pinned this post at the top of my blog using a postdated date - for a reason.  A reason that I never thought I’d have to deal with.  I originally wrote this in September 2016....

I have recently been the victim of libel, harassment, and public humiliation.

When I started this blog, I never thought it’d get to where it is now.  I started it as a way for my distant family and friends to follow along with my family and our shenanigans.  I didn’t use Facebook yet and I had a couple of friends with blogs who told me I should start my own.  I love to write, tell stories, weave words, and make people laugh.  It was the perfect thing for me for a hobby.  And a diary is sooooo 1995.

Then my blog evolved.  It evolved into having readers and followers and reviews and giveaways and getting asked to write for other sites.  And by then, I was hooked.  I found something that I loved to do {write} and have the opportunity to meet and work with some really amazing people.  I mean, Bethenny Frankel, y’all!  She is a total sweetheart, and a hoot!!

But with all of this has also brought backlash.  I had to take down a blog post a couple years ago because I sided with a Dad who shot his daughter’s laptop as a discipline measure.  I thought it was funny.  Extreme!  And not my choice of punishment as a parent.  But funny.  Yet, I was called every name in the book and a horrible parent for agreeing with him.

And that’s where I don’t pan out so well with being a blogger and social media manager.  I get butt-hurt real easy.  I’m human.  I care what people think.  I was told to just ignore the comments and go on with my life but that’s not me.  I wanted to respond to each and every person and either give them a hug, or explain my brain.  But I knew that would get me nowhere.  So I deleted the post and haven’t had any issues since.

Until a year ago.

One year ago {June 2015}, I received a horrible Facebook message.  I recognized the last name but not the first name or photo of the person sending me the message.  I ignored it, as I was sure they had the wrong person.

A few weeks later, I got another one.  This time she threatened me that she was going to have someone hit on my husband so he’d cheat on me.

First of all, let’s say I AM the person she’s accusing me to be.  Which I’m not.  But why would any sane person say or do that?
Second, the year she’s saying an incident happened was 1998.  I was SIXTEEN years old!  And it's been 19 years! Stop doing the math.

I'm definitely not the same person I was 19 years ago.  Are you?  Is anyone?
But then, that kind of explains things.  If SHE is the exact same person as SHE was when SHE was 16 – then it makes total sense.  SHE hasn’t changed.  SHE is more than likely still the same immature, irresponsible, irrational person that SHE was when SHE was 16.  And evidently SHE doesn't realize that people change over an 18-year time frame.

To say the reason you're doing this now is because you want to point out that I'm not the Christian homemaker that I portray myself to be in my blogs is completely asinine.  But also somewhat accurate.  I definitely did NOT think of myself as a homemaker when I was 16.  I still had a curfew and chores and parties and fieldtrips and homework. My parents still paid my car insurance and fixed me dinner. I couldn't even vote yet.

I’m a completely different person than I was then.  I was still learning my morals.  I was still instilling my values.  I was still learning where I stood in the world, figuring everything all out, and deciding who I’d become.

I’m happy with the path I chose.  Yes, I've made plenty of mistakes in my life along the way.  But the very one she's accusing ME of, is completely false. It’s just unfortunate that she is not happy with her own path and has to berate a person with harassing attacks.  It's sad, really.  Is this what makes her feel better?  To create lies and harass somebody for something she THINKS happened.  And why would she wait 19 years to confront the person she thinks did this to her family?  Has nothing good come in the past 19 years?

Since those Facebook messages, I’ve received over 30 messages, posts, emails, and online comments from this individual.

Clearly, this is someone who has far too much time on their hands.  My advice - Go to your kids sports games.  Find some friends.  Go to the park.  Attend a church service.  Get counseling.  ENJOY LIFE.  There's so much to enjoy in this life.
"Every second you spend dwelling on the past is a second of your present that you are missing".

This quote resonates with me.  I have skeletons in my closet just as everyone does.  I hate parts of my past.  But I can't change it.  And I definitely don't sit at my computer and dwell on the past.  It's unhealthy.  It's not normal.

Yes, I know.  I have a solid case of harassment and possibly defamation.  And believe you me, I’m ready to put an end to all of this.  And I will do my best.

But here's the thing.  What's that going to do?  Nothing.  In her mind, she is still going to believe what she wants to believe.  She is going to continue on believing that something happened in 1998.  Which it didn’t – with me anyway.  I’ve never heard of her before in my life.
And because she has me confused with somebody else, or maybe because somebody has fed her a whole bunch of lies, she has herself in a whole heap of a mess.

She took it too far.  And now the legal repercussions are what she’s going to have to deal with.

I’m not a movie star or a famous singer.  I’m DEFINITELY not a model or anything special.  In fact, I’ve gained damn near 130 lbs. since 1998.  But I DO have a name I have made for myself and I'm proud of it.  And I'll be damned if one person tries to ruin that for me over LIES.

Dear {You know exactly who you are}-
I’ve been instructed by the police to ask you to stop.  So, please, stop.  I’m not who you think I am and what you’re doing is hurting you and your family more than it is me and mine.  I take that back, you have made me lose more sleep over all of this than anything else that's ever happened to me.  I've cried buckets of tears over this and I haven't been myself.  But I have also been through the same thing you THINK that I did to you.  And it hurts.  It hurts so badly.  I’ve been shit on, drug though mud, picked back up to only be shit on again and again.  Life sucks sometimes.  But the things I have gone through in life have made me who I am today.  And the things that I have gone through in life, I wouldn’t wish them on my worst enemy.  Because that’s also part of being a decent human being.  People make mistakes.  So whomever you think did this to you over 20 years ago, knows they screwed up, I’m sure.  And any morally, decent human being, would feel awful about it.  THEY are the ones that have to live with their decision for the rest of their life.  Not you.  You are the one that should have been holding your head high for being the bigger person.  But that’s why I’m telling you to stop all of this.  Before your ruin this for yourself.  You’ve tarnished my name all over the internet over something that you THINK happened.  You still have the choice to be the better person.  Or you can stoop to a level lower than the person that you feel betrayed you.  That’s your choice.  But realize, you’re going to have to live with that choice for the rest of your life.  Just as that person has to live with what they did to you.  Think about your kids and your family.  Not just about yourself.  You woke up this morning and so did your kids.  The world has not ended.  That's a pretty sweet blessing if you ask me.

And lastly, to my readers… 
My dedicated, extended fam…
Should you read, hear, or see anything about me online.  Please take a moment to send me an email and let me know.  Chances are, I already know that it’s out there.  But I can’t continue to sit at my computer and Google my name all day either.  Plus there’s just not much I can do to get it taken down.  {Section 230}  You know, the whole, “what’s put on the Internet is there forever” thing.  It really is.
I also ask that you not believe the negative stuff that's out there.  Or do believe it.  That’s your choice.  Because … well … we ALL know that everything we read on the Internet is true, right?
Thank you for taking the time to listen and not judge before knowing the truth. 
Thank you for being loyal to me as my reader and friend.
Thank you for sticking by me through my trials and bumps in life.  If you ever need anything, you know I got your back.
Thank you for being you.
You are soooo amazing.
Beyond amazing.

I am still here.  I am still breathing and on my two feet.  And just as I said to the person above -- The world has not ended and regardless of what she or anybody else says about me, I sleep well at night knowing the choices I've made in my life have led me to exactly where I am suppose to be.  And if anything at all has come of all of this, it's that it's brought me closer to my husband and my family than I ever thought possible.
Sometimes we get so wrapped up in life and everything going on around us that we fail to notice what's standing right in front of us.  And has been all along.
Stay true to yourselves.

All my love,

Amanda Topinka


  1. You are so eloquent with your words. Keep being the adult in the situation. Good things come to good people. Even if we have to wait a lifetime to receive the good.

  2. I'm so sorry you've had to deal with this. Just remember, sticks and stones. Who cares what they think of you now. Obviously this person has some issues to work out. Pray for them. That's all you can do. Those that like you will still like you and those that don't probably never will. All you can be is yourself and everyone who knows you will love you for you.
    Keep your head up. Take the high road. You're a great mom, wife, friend, and person. If somebody can't see that, that's their loss.

  3. I have known you for almost 35 years (your whole life) and am amazed at the beautiful person you have grown into. You have nothing to be ashamed of and no parent could be prouder of their child than I am. Even though you are almost 35 years old it still bothers me when you are hurting.. You worried about what people would think when this immature person started talking about something that happened in her life so long ago but we can't help what goes through the mind of someone that obviously has no life to enjoy.. All you can do is enjoy yours because your family will not desert you.. Any mom would be proud of you like I am.. Love You Lots!