Sometimes it is best to let sleeping dogs lie. But if you are lawyer and former York County probate judge Robert Nadeau, your motto is closer to, “Sometimes it is best to wake up the sleeping dog at 2 am to triple post a long angry rant because my mom found some less than flattering comments about me on your website, and while I’m at it let me cast accusations upon my firm’s former clients in a very public and unprofessional way.” Yep, that’s what this guy did. Here’s the post.
None of us are perfect; we all make mistakes, sometimes terrible mistakes. But Mr. Nadeau has decided to magnify his mistakes with the screed copied in it’s entirety below.
The early morning triple posted rant:
Some 3 to 6 years after all of the turmoil, humiliation and struggles to right wrongs while suffering immensely in every conceivable personal, professional and financial way, I have come across this blogged article and all of the comments from some really rather snakelike characters who in each instance similarly need to look real hard into their life’s mirrors. But they apparently lack the capacity to meaningfully do so and, therefore, simply lower themselves to the levels they perceive and decry in others such as me, or worse.
First, let’s get some things straight about myself. I made a big mistake. I actually fell deeply in love with someone, “L”, 19 years younger than me, while representing her very well (by her own often stated admission) in her divorce case until I realized what was happening to me emotionally. It shocked the hell out of me–a no-no for professionals, and something that had never happened in what had been by then a 22-year career as a successful lawyer and elected judge and a previously, unerringly faithful husband and father. I then immediately told L that I was required to cease being her lawyer, before anything physical between us occurred. She immediately agreed to and did immediately hire replacement counsel without missing a beat in the continuing, effective handling of her divorce case via her new attorney. I also then immediately informed and left my wife. L and i eventually lived together and did so very happily for the next two months. However, feeling great guilt about the effects on my children that my new, unexpected relationship (NOT a mere “affair”) was having, I struggled and initially decided to attempt marriage counseling with my then wife to show my children that I was paying attention to their constantly stated, as well as visible, emotional needs and was giving reconciliation a try that I privately had extreme doubts about in view of how I felt about L. But that reconciliation decision devastated L (and, in private, me), so L, out of great hurt and confusion, went against what she knew about what had really happened and followed the advice of others by claiming that I must have been unethical. So, what would have been an inevitable, permanent return to L became tremendously complicated by two years of adverse publicity instigated by two young, catty, underperforming attorneys employed by me who didn’t hesitate to publicize my “affair” for their own economic advantage as an unsuccessful strategy to extract a financial settlement from me while they proceeded to complete their already, previously held plans to leave my law firm anyway to establish their own partnership elsewhere. The voracious media and a highly media-conscious legal system spearheaded by those former associates and their attorney, and eventually by the Maine Board of Overseers of the Bar and certain unelected judges always concerned about public perceptions concerning their alleged unwillingness to go after one of their “own”, went after me to the nth degree and more in a succession of court proceedings involving the former associates fighting over accounts, board proceedings, a distorted judicial conduct finding pursued by a political opponent that with all due respect was simply wrong, and an entirely one-sided, abusive divorce judgment.
The succession of these events exacted tremendous strain on the relationship L and I found a way to resume over a period of more than two years, that was intended to lead to marriage. We were engaged and, I thought, very excited and happy about our future. There was nothing false about that commitment, or my “ethics” that preceded it. When our long engagement, which was frustrated horribly by my eventual, clearly punitive divorce results, ended, it was the biggest devastation of all for me. Many things I learned from others after the fact relating to what had allegedly, really been going on in my relationship with L despite our engagement only deepened the devastation and caused me to leave my beloved Maine at the end of 2008. Stupid me, for ever having the type of huge ego that caused me to think that anyone 19 years younger than me and so seemingly attractive could ever really be serious about a long-term relationship with someone like me! But know this–what you read in papers or on blogs, or hear in the media, is but 1/10th of the story, and is often based on sound bytes, slants and lack or space or interest for telling the full story. Sensationalism sells. Anything more is boring.
Second, for the person who suggested that attorneys employed by me were mistreated by me and that court personnel and employees were similarly mistreated, stop surmising and start knowing the facts. As with any employment situation anywhere, there were some underperforming employees (attorneys) over the course of a 12-year law firm who left because they simply didn’t carry their weight or had simply used their entry-leve positions as an opportunity to gain experience and a stepping stone to more promising positions elsewhere. Most left on amicable terms and were welcome to stay, and all left as much better, more skilled lawyers by far than when they started their jobs. In the final year of my practice in Maine, financial difficulties caused by the seemingly endless adverse media attention, public misinformation and the draconian divorce judgment I received which was later, in part, successfully appealed, simply necessitated a reduction in force and the eventual relocation of my practice to a different state. Those still working with me, both in my law firm and in the probate court, hoped for and wanted me to be able to continue to employ and work with them, and I wanted to reciprocate, but it had simply become too financially, professionally and emotionally difficult for me to do so.
Third, my discovery on your blog that “Naran” has been participating in it comes as a huge shock to me and to my family. My mother, Nancy Auclair, who unquestionably served York County as its elected Treasurer in 2008 with tremendous distinction and faithfulness, had considered Naran Roe Spaulding to have been a close personal friend until she discovered by surprise Naran’s cowardly writings just two days ago. Not once has Naran ever discussed any of her alleged concerns and apparent perceptions regarding me with either my mother or me during the past 6 years, despite her prolific comments we have just discovered. And, I dare say that Naran could not and would dare not bear the scrutiny that public officials such as I have had to endure, and that she need not worry about doing so anyway. She is hardly popular among the majority of the electorate in her town of Kennebunk, due to her endlessly critical, often myopic attacks on public servants and educators trying to do good, faithful work. She is not a person with many real solutions other than to constantly bellyache about “taxes” in the usual, over-simplistic, nearsighted Republican tradition, and in my opinion could not be elected as dog catcher if she mustered the courage to take the heat of public office to begin with. Thanks for your “courageous” opinions, Naran–now, try telling it to my face, in person!
Then there’s commentator Charlie Neville. Wow! What a hypocrite! Hell, he even criticized my former associate, Amy McGarry, in his comments. Although I have no use or respect for a variety of other reasons, the fact insofar as Neville is concerned is that McGarry, while employed by me, was Neville’s trial attorney who actually did a very good job saving Neville’s skin in connection with his criminal prosecution for a stalking-related charge initiated by his former girlfriend. Despite that result, and despite the most ill-advised (and, as I recall, rather racy and hardly becoming) communications that had occurred between Neville and that former girlfriend that were a part of his prosecution, Neville mentions nothing about that. Instead, he bellyaches about his legal bill McGarry charged him for a great result, and then goes so far as to distort that the bill was somehow my doing when I wasn’t even his lawyer. The hypocrisy of his comments brings to mind his estimate for producing a sign at my former law firm years ago, that was so extremely exorbitant that we chose to hire a different sign vendor instead at a price that was, as I recall, less than 25% of what Neville wanted to stick us for.
As for the writer named McGee, I only know of one couple named McGee whom I’ve represented. They are wonderful people and recent, repeat clients following my reopening of a satellite office in Sanford in June, 2010. There, as well as in my New Hampshire office, I still have many clients who strongly believe in and rely on my abilities and my ethics.
I am far from perfect. Evidently, Naran, Neville and the other commentators on your blog are far superior persons who have no embarrassing dark secrets. I’ve been through hell and, in the end most importantly, extreme heartaches that may indeed have been poetic justice meted to me. I’ve learned a lot. I also know and am most confident in my abilities, my extremely, endlessly hard work for clients, my resilience and perseverence, and my redoubled ethical standards despite everything. I, unlike those who have commented about me, have not only learned from my mistakes in ways my critics can never benefit from, but also will always have the courage to take them head on, not in the anonymous comfort of blogs few except those similarly prone to feast on the struggles and misfortunes of others that people like them resort to. Go ahead folks–come visit me and tell me what you think in person, not on cowardly websites and blogs, if you really think you know the whole story, and if you truly have anywhere near the courage of your convictions that I know I possess!
As Kenny Rogers & the First Edition once sang, “Have you ever kicked a good man when he was down, just to make yourself feel strong? Tell it all, brother!” And, sister.
Robert M.A. Nadeau
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Thu, 11/04/2010 – 1:28am #20