It’s not just a trend as of late… it’s a timeless Noun / Verb / Adjective.
Female Empowerment is here to stay.
The result of female empowerment is impressive; the subsequent feeling of allowing oneself to be empowered, is bold. Whether through a boudoir photography session, allowing her inner-strength to reign again, or starting a new business, there are countless ways to achieve this triumphant feeling.
And there’s no shortage of avenues right now to assist in the “rising movement.” There are countless organizations and businesses cropping up, which aim to do just this - as we know all too well, it’s important that “we-women” look out for one another. And also to keep each other in-check.
Colorado female-owned-and-operated Private Investigator firm, The Fact Firm, keeps women empowerment at its mission’s core - with two sisters at the helm. I happen to be one of them.
I’ve always had a philosophy that some things aren’t meant to be understood. So why go to such lengths to comprehend something, that at times, seemed like it wasn’t meant to be understood? And furthermore, become a Private Investigator?
The situation which brought me to my knees, was the ending of a marriage which included outrageous feuding and complex finances. We all know of a couple or two who has fallen prey to this type of ending. In fact whether it’s a divorce, the end of a business relationship gone wrong, or an unraveling of an online dating triangle, many families and friends go through the headache of untangling themselves from fascinating and intricate webs which can surprise the UN-surprisable. Accordingly, we decided to do the research, education and training - to become licensed, Professional Private Investigators (aka, “PI’s”.)
You read that right. We started The Fact Firm (www.FactFirm.com) to do precisely that, sort out truth from fiction, make it affordable to the everyday person, and to help parents like ourselves- mostly women- sort things out. We have found that females are not okay with unanswered questions.
The legal side, the client side, the partner-side. During the licensing journey, we became encircled with quite the fascinating network of the online-dating-underground. A few situations were too captivating to remain untold. It might even raise your “red flag radar” a bit, and save you from needing to commission us in the future.
Most of us can identify… we’ve all been the proverbial shoulder for a friend or two whose love-match-made-online, turned out to be a sham. Whether their match’s profile photo was just a bit heavy on the editing filters making them far more attractive than “in real life,” or the person with whom they were matched was a total jerk, the stories are endless - and yes, sometimes comical. And no, it’s not just the men who turn out to be misleading their suitor. Women are guilty, too. The majority of the “deep-seeded” issues, however, seem to be with the men omitting information. Like, pretty important stuff.
I mean, we’ve all been guilty of adjusting a photo to smooth our skin or remove a (well-earned) wrinkle or two. But what I’m about to share are examples when the outcomes of online matchmaking has turned downright scary.
I’m not talking about the benign photo-filter-issue, here.
After surveying a group of 20 matches made online (various online dating sites), my business partner / sister, and I, have uncovered several interesting stories.
The biggest dating disasters, took months - and in one case, more than a year - to find out that the person they fell for --- did not check the box, “HAVE CHILDREN” --- let alone “Divorced,” in their “profile.” In fact, the latter situation to which I’m referring (divorce), not only included children; he was essentially living dual lives with different addresses simultaneously, where his CHILD SUPPORT checks were mailed from the alternate PO Box, along with ALIMONY to his ex, in addition to being the gathering-place for piled-up court papers, traffic tickets, and yes - love-letter-evidence from another woman he was also courting. Confused? Two current women thinking they’re the only one, an ex-wife, three children, and money being sent to two of the ex’s, one required additional for child support.
I mean, I can hardly keep my schedule straight with just two children, one husband and one address. I can’t imagine how difficult it would be to play roles in two + lives, afford to send support payments to other dependents, try to see them once in awhile keep your “current-exciting- life,” hidden from all current-players, as well. Red flags WERE everywhere, but ignored, and guised under the umbrella of “love.” And eventually - it all came to the surface. Because it’s nearly impossible to live such a charade forever. And do it well. So “they” got caught. We caught him. And he’s in trouble.
Sometimes it’s only when the cyber-love-connection couple moved-in together, that they find out their “new true love” also had a CRIMINAL past. And this time it was a SHE.
While a simple Google search plus some time on social media snooping around, can uncover a lot, it can’t uncover ALL dirty secrets in a matter of minutes, which we have at our fingertips through a software only available to licensed Detectives. It’s not because the people didn’t do their “due diligence,” that their match’s are getting away with stuff. It’s because some of these “issues” are pretty hard to find.
The reason we were retained in this last case, was because he answered the door at her residence after moving in… and he was served with court papers. For her. “Does Jane Doe live here?” He answered yes, the individual said, “Can I get your name?” to which he obliged. The rest of that conversation was a blur, as the Process Server spoke about his fiance: “Let Ms. Doe know she’s been served - this is from the law firm representing [the department store] she was caught shoplifting from now that she’s missed her first two court appearances.”
These dating websites have no obligation to do anything more than take your money on a monthly basis, make accessible to you - single, lonely and vulnerable - profiles of whomever you may want to date, based simply on the portrait that other individual painted, truth, or not, connecting you with commonalities the algorithms pick up.
The average person has no idea that hiring a Private Investigator (aka, a “Detective” or a “PI”) is within their reach to quickly get the truth before their heart is hooked in the relationship.
Watching friends go through the disaster of untangling themselves from such a mess as described above is just one of the reasons that Private Investigator services are on the rise.
It isn’t as far-fetched as people might think, and for the super-rich anymore. The idea of using one to ensure your future is not about to be derailed before the train even leaves the station, is becoming smarter and less taboo.
We are not both just “nosy Capricorns” determined to be right.
As it turns out, we learned quickly that given the majority of licensed PI’s around the country are men, there was a huge deficit of women in the business, whom many clients - obviously including females, wives and moms - were reluctant to approach, for fear that the PI might think their case was too “petty” or trivial. Or that the services would be too expensive.
One mom who recently retained us, explained during the client intake process that her husband was adamant there was no possible way their 16-year old son was texting and driving as she suspected. Secondly, the dad refused to believe their teen could possibly be disobeying the “limited license” laws that in most states, require drivers for their first year behind the wheel to have no individuals in the car with them other than family or siblings. Yet this mom had a suspicion, based on the odd types of garbage she was finding in the back seat that their son swore he knew nothing about.
Concerned about how to approach him or how to find evidence, she quietly hired The Fact Firm to either confirm her gut feeling, or provide her reassurance she had nothing to worry about.
Without invading her son’s privacy, we set-up-shop on the patio of a Starbucks near the son’s high school, covertly capturing video of her son in his hand-me-down Subaru they entrusted him with, where the stereo can be heard blasting loudly at top volume, with a carload full of teens on what was likely their lunch period or an “off hour” at school.
Digging up dirt (or uncovering roses!) on whomever you might be dating, or carefully keeping an eye on your teen, are just two examples of different services that Private Investigative firms offer.
These are not “fly-by-night” operations that you may be imagining based on what you have seen in TV or in the movies. In fact, in all but a handful of states, Private Investigators are required to be tested on their knowledge of the law, background checked by the State Bureau of Investigation, fingerprinted, and licensed to operate.
Whether it is suspicion of a cheating spouse who is the breadwinner, or your beloved child behind the wheel, you have options.
Another case we recently closed was a father just back from rehab, for the third time. The wife listened to her gut, and she decided she needed a “sober coach” to monitor his sobriety. She was right. Within an hour of landing at the airport to come home, his Uber was headed to the liquor store.
Women’s Intuition has been studied for decades; something about this phenomenon has been spotlight time and time again. Women’s intuition, Mother’s intuition. Listen to it.
My goal right now is to get you to tune in and remove the static. Your gut-instinct is powerful. And if you have a hunch, facts are the only way to uncover the truth.
Women, you would be surprised how hiring a female Detective gives you the added bonus of undeniable intuition. The best part about some of our work - is when the evidence we provide ends up putting an end to one's’ worries allowing our client to better sleep at night.
If you’re not in Colorado, don’t fret. To find a licensed PI near you, visit either the United States Association of Professional Investigators at www.usapi.org or check out PINOW, a network of licensed private investigators at www.pinow.com.
Don’t waste time if something doesn’t smell right. Do something about it. Allow yourself to be empowered and get to the bottom of what’s keeping you up at night.