desperately need advice....

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by neednewtechnique, May 12, 2007.

  1. neednewtechnique

    neednewtechnique New Member

    Okay, our difficult child did something today that I don't know how to handle, and I can't really blame it on her difficult child-ness, but more on the fact that she is a kid who has been pulled away from her mum at a crucial moment in her life....

    Here goes.....
    She went to stay all night with her grandparents (bio mom's mom and dad) who we know are good people and are safe. Problem is, she is only allowed visits with mom on certain days and they must be supervised by certain people. I was worried that if bio mom found out our difficult child would be so close, she might "happen to show up" at her parents' house so she could see her, and they are not technically allowed to supervise a visit, so we knew that could be a bad situation. I called our difficult child's CPS caseworker and asked her what we should do. She told me that our difficult child, the grandparents, and her bio mom know the rules and it is NOT our responsibility to point them out, but that if I found out somehow that she DID see bio mom when she was at grandparents' house, I WAS required to tell her.

    So my husband and I chose not to say anything, because we figured if they were going to arrange a "visit", that they would do it whether we said they could or couldn't...but if we made a point of saying they couldn't, then they would just make sure we didn't find out about it. Also, as CPS said, THEY KNOW THE RULES, it is THEIR responsibility to follow them.

    So when she came home this evening, I casually asked if she seen her bio mom while she was gone, and she said "yes." And I asked her if her bio mom came over to grandparents' house, and she said "no we went over to her house." and I asked if her grandpa took her over there and she said "no, me and my little cousin rode our bikes over there". So NOT ONLY did she have a "visit" with mom when she wasn't supposed to, and it was not supervised by an approved person, IT WASN'T SUPERVISED AT ALL!!!!!

    Now, my dilemma is this...I feel that it is my responsibility to inform her CPS caseworker of this offense, but at the same time, I feel that maybe we should just keep this between us and let it go....

    I would almost be willing to let it go had bio mom come over to granparents' house, simply because she WOULD have had SOME RESEMBLANCE of supervision, and it would not have been at her little crack house...but the fact that it was unsupervised completely....that worries me a bit.

    I have not had a chance to talk to my husband about this yet, as Saturday's are his "guys night" and he is holed up in our pool house right now with all his friends...but I am not even sure how he will respond to this or what he will choose to do about it. Does anyone have any thoughts??????
  2. kris

    kris New Member

    <span style='font-size: 11pt'> <span style='font-family: Georgia'> <span style="color: #000099"> i know this places you in a very uncomfortable position but the caseworker was very explicit about what your responsibility is in this. if she finds out you knew about the unauthorized visit then it will come back to bite YOU....and you don't need that.

    in my opinion it's important that you & the caseworker operate from a place of trust as much as possible. it's doubtful difficult child will feel any repercussions but bio can & should. grands will probably will get spoken to about closer supervision but difficult child is, after all, a difficult child & will do what difficult children do.

    i don't think you have a choice. you'd have wiggle room if you hadn't specifically asked caseworker about this, but that horse is out of the barn.

    </span> </span> </span>
  3. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Tell the caseworker. As she said, they know the rules. You chose not to tell them, you had your reasons for this, do you think that if you had told them that the visit would not have taken place? or would difficult child have been ordered to lie to you about it? Frankly, I would be even more concerned about instructing difficult child to lie about it.

    Talk to the caseworker about it and see if there is any way she can keep your involvement out of it - sometimes careful questioning by the caseworker can produce results that keep you in the clear.

    Anyway, you can always use the same 'dumb insolence' in turn, if difficult child's bio-family get narky about you telling them. You look wide-eyed and say, "But I was just chatting to case worker about what a lovely visit difficult child had ... surely there was nothing wrong?"
    If they say, "Yes there was," that is a clear admission that they knowingly broke the rules. If they say, "You know they said bio-mum couldn't visit," your response can be, "then you just admitted that you knew it too - so why did you break the rules?"

    If they try to say, "But we didn't know," or "We forgot!" then you say, "Then I forgot too, when I was chatting to the case worker."

    The case worker's job is to ensure that difficult child's welfare is always taken care of. Bio-family have their own agenda which does NOT have difficult child on the top. Maybe bio-mum's problems are connected with her parent's refusal to say "no" to her, and tell her to clean up her act and be responsible.

    They have no possible excuse. They knowingly broke the rules. And if they claim they didn't know, then you can equally claim that you weren't dobbing, you were just chatting. After all, difficult child didn't hide it from you, she was open about answering your questions.

    Your job is to ensure difficult child's welfare and safety are top priority. So think about what you should do, in those terms.

  4. Sunlight

    Sunlight Active Member

    I would talk it over wtih teh grandparents, they should have been supervising better to know where she was.
    I am curious, you say you are 23, and your child is 12 yrs old. you have had a child at age 11???
  5. timer lady

    timer lady Queen of Hearts


    Document, document, document. If nothing else report via email each time an unsupervised visit happens. CPS worker may insist that the parties involved know the rules, but if they aren't following the rules the worker needs to be informed.

    In any case, your husband should be reporting this. difficult child is his daughter - you are somewhat in limbo with the legalities of the situation.

    Just my 2 cents on the subject.
  6. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat

    in my humble opinion, You need to talk to husband, and then tell the caseworker. And I would not worry about whether grandparents have a problem with it or not. They knew the rules. YOU are the responsible one. After her visit, it is abvious that you are the MOST responsible one.

    PS Ant's mom: She is step-mom. difficult child went by bike and visited bio-mom.
  7. neednewtechnique

    neednewtechnique New Member

    An's mom,

    Okay, I AM 23, and our difficult child is 12, we are discussing in this post that our difficult child had an unauthorized visit with her bio mom, which IS NOT me...she is in foster care in my home until such time as her father is awarded custody of is a very strange situation, as her father is my husband, and she was placed here in our home with BOTH of us, but the state isn't quite ready to allow my husband to have fully custody of his daughter until they have had some time to evaluate that he can, in fact, care for her, since he has never had custody of her before. WE didn't get into trouble or anything, but bio mom got put in prison for drug related charges, in the presence of our difficult child, and she had to find a new home...

    To sum it up, in July, my husband will take custody of his daughter, and I will officially become her "step mother" instead of her "foster mother". (THIS DAY CANNOT COME SOON ENOUGH FOR ANY OF US!!!) I absolutely LOVE our difficult child and would never ever want her to end up anywhere else, even if she DOES have a tendency to be a bit over the edge at times.... You know, they say that a step-parent, step-child relationship can be a difficult thing and that you don't have to "love" each other to make it work, just have to "respect" each other, but I don't buy that order to effectively parent ANY child, you simply HAVE to love them, besides which, if they are the offspring of your SO, how could you NOT love them??

    So in short, the decision has been made, I will be calling the caseworker and having a discussion with her about the visit. As for someone else's question about whether or not the visit would have taken place if we HAD said something, I HONESTLY don't think it would have changed anything, other than our difficult child would NOT have openly admitted to me that she did it, whether INSTRUCTED to lie or made the decision on her own, who knows, but we CERTAINLY have established that they don't play by the rules, no matter who tells them to....
  8. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    I think you did exactly the right thing. You asked the caseworker's advice and you did what she said - don't remind them. basically, what caseworker has done is give the biofamily plenty of rope. It's caseworker's choice as to when to use that rope to hang their case with. And as you said, it meant difficult child was open in telling you. It's not up to difficult child whether she makes the decision to visit biomum, legally she's not able to make these decisions because she's under age. These decisions have been made for her, by the court and the system. Other adults in her life should do the responsible thing. Their failure to be responsible now shows up in start contrast.

    Because you didn't run around like a chook with its head cut off, you now are in the driving seat, basically. You behaved sensibly, but also with caution and calm. Not everybody would do this - some would by now be making a HUGE noise and demanding action be taken. But instead, you have simply handed over the information to the person whose job it is to keep an eye on things.

    I'm glad you talked to caseworker. All in all, I think this is good news, even the visit. It sounds like no harm was done but rules were broken and not by you. Those rules were going to get broken anyway. At least no harm resulted from that breach - this time. It makes it easier to prevent next time.