difficult child's baby's health and their living conditions

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by tandem biker, Jun 18, 2007.

  1. tandem biker

    tandem biker New Member

    On Sunday, 6/10, difficult child and husband take Tyler (15 mo) to the ER with a high fever. He'd been to the dr. on Friday/Saturday for antibotic injections each day for dual ear infections and the medications weren't touching the infection. [Note - this child has not been well since he was an infant - chronic infections.] Later that night, they admit him to the Oncology Ward fearing his blood results are leading them to a Leukemia diagnosis. husband is devastated. To me, it seems that difficult child is Later that night and the next day, repeated blood results are so significantly different that they suspect a lab error in the first blood sample but his neophils are still low. Although they were 95% certain it was a nasty infection, they were still not ruling out Leukemia unless the neophils started rising indicating his bone marrow was reproducing them albeit slowly.

    While difficult child is staying in the hospital with the baby (sad to say but she was enjoying all of the attention), we decided it was time that someone went into her apt. to see how she was keeping it up. I'd been saying for months that someone needed to drop in and demand to be let in. husband and ex didn't want to force the issue and I have no over-ride power in this issue. My younger step-daughter (difficult child's sister) and I drew the short straws and took husband's extra key and went over there this past Tuesday.

    Long story short, they were living in squallor. Her geriatric dog had been kept in the bathroom while she was at work or away from the house thus dog feces/urine littered on the floor and smeared into the hallway carpet. GUinea pig pen in the bedroom on a crate with crap everywhere. Trash was everywhere [every floor (2-3' deep in her kitchen and bedroom) space, every surface space]: dirty diapers, diaper wipes, bottles, broken plastic, money, bills, food containers, dishes, silverware, rotting food, etc. The smell was not as bad as you would expect as the air conditioning was cranked so high it was freezing. The pictures we took were frightening but all well showed the true story.

    We literally felt sick for that baby. She had been living this way for years and for anyone to think that she would have changed her ways just slayed me - I knew it wouldn't change but hoped that now with the baby involved and his health in jeapordy, maybe husband and ex would now act to at least involve a social worker to intervene on that baby's behalf with Katie.

    Unfortunately, I was wrong. husband and ex confronted her in the hospital and told her she and Tyler would be living with Jennifer until they cleaned/sanitized her place and that they would from now on be checking on her twice a week to make sure it stayed that way. If not, they would be calling the authorities and turning her in and ask that they remove the baby and place him with ex. Yep, another "NEXT TIME".

    Hence, they've now been hauling trash, cleaning/sanitizing as they can given baby care, jobs, etc. but still have almost 1/2 to go plus her car which is in the same state. Not me - she booted me out the first day when I couldn't keep my tongue when she started badgering her mom on the way over to get started. She actually said to her mom something about keeping the baby at mom's house because it wasn't sanitary. I turned around in my seat and said "and you were going to take that baby to your house when he was released from the hospital"? That was it, she was on me like a fly on horse_ _ _ _ screaming at me and giving up my secret - I'm a 3-week old closet smoker - she caught me! I said "that's all you got on me? Whew hew! I think I have a little more leverage on you with social services"! I was now the super bad guy and she didn't want me in her apt! She then unlocked and slammed the door on my foot and kept slamming it until I removed it. Fine with me. I told her I would go back home and clean her filthy car. She screamed that I wouldn't be touching her car either which I replied "not yours, you just drive it. We paid for it, pay the car insurance and even the gas you put in it." But hey, I don't want to do that so I picked up a key that looked familiar off her counter, stuck it in my pocket and left. It, by the way, belonged to our bedroom door.

    So, hey, the geriatric dog's been with us since last Sunday and finally after a week and 2 days, husband's been able to convince her that it's time to put her to sleep and that's being done today. That's after having the dog pooping/peeing on our family room carpet 2-3x daily/nightly and husband steam cleaning it every day.

    I'm done with her. I don't want her in my house. I want no more association with her by phone or in person. Baby is welcome to be at the house - I'll gladly develop whatever relationship I can have with him when it's separate from her. If husband wants her over, I'll being going somewhere else - but she will never be allowed to be inside unattended.

    husband is not ready or willing to yet detach financially, emotionally, or any other way right now. I understand his first priority is for that baby. However, I feel that unless they come clean with the doctors about the state of his living conditions, their understanding of what may truly have happened will never be known. By the way, husband called me to report that his latest blood draw showed that his neophils have doubled which now leads them to believe it was an infection. YA THINK????

    For all of you whose difficult child's are like this and who may be trying to get pregnant, whatever ways you can discourage them - please try. It's so not fair to the babies especially when difficult children are unable to take care of themselves financially or emotionally.

  2. tandem biker

    tandem biker New Member

    I failed to mention that Tyler was released on Tuesday evening and that he is currently still covered under Medicaid.
  3. Sunlight

    Sunlight Active Member

    I called child protective services three times about my grandson when he was smaller. they did do a surprise visit.
    they didnt do much else.

    I hope if she knows someone will check that she is better with her hygiene. ugh.
  4. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    My computer is giving me fits. I've lost two replies. Sorry.
  5. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    LOL! I KNEW it would take a one liner! DDD
  6. hearthope

    hearthope New Member

    I think we all have a responsibility to take care of those that can not speak up for themselves.

    The baby deserves a clean healthy living situation, I would call children's services ASAP

    They will work (hopefully) with difficult child and make sure she gets her act together, if she can't then she shouldn't have the baby

    TYLERFAN New Member

    Hi there:

    Although my daughter is an addict she is also a slob and I can imagine her house in the same state...... :hypnosis:
    My difficult child was living with my grandson in not only squalid conditions but also dangerous drug conditions.
    Finally she begged me to pick up her son one night and I have had him ever since. I felt that my difficult child's Lifestyle", her personality disorder and her drug abuse were going to land my grandson in foster care eventually. I was not about to let that happen. :grrr:
    I wonder if you have thought about whether you want to take the baby, before protective services gets called? It's not for everyone. If she will let you have him.....maybe you could check with a custody lawyer, if the bio-father is not around, you have a chance.
    I can sympathize about your difficult child....sounds like she and mine would be pals.

    Melissa :angel:
  8. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I'm going to try ONE more time! My daughter is beyond a slob.
    Not quite as bad as your description but definitely NOT acceptable for a small child. Three times other people called
    social services. Three times the social worker investigating
    "understood" that "it is hard to keep a clean house and be a single working Mother". WTH??????? Funny...I was able to do it
    without endangering my children!

    Anyway, because of your husbands position it might be wise to
    enlist a third party to call in so your grandchild will have some
    assurance of safety and your marriage won't have to be put on the

    My husband completely avoids GFGmom whenever possible. I understand
    your need to avoid the useless stress. on the other hand, the baby really
    does have to be protected..one way or the other. Hugs. DDD
  9. SunnyFlorida

    SunnyFlorida Active Member

    Do you work in a field where you are a "mandatory reporter". You could be an anonymous reporter :thumbsup:

    I certainly know my difficult child 1 would feel right at home with your difficult child. His living conditions are basically the same.
  10. KFld

    KFld New Member

    It's one thing to turn out heads when our grown children choose to live this way, but when they bring a baby into it, it really makes me ill.

    I would make an anonymous call myself. They will check it out.
  11. Genny

    Genny Worlds Best Nana

    I have to disagree with the others. There is no point callng if her parents have already cleaned up the mess. They won't do anything and you'll be the bad guy for nothing (lets be honest - anonymous or not, if CPS contacts her now she'll know it was you).

    Let her parents monitor her like they said they will. If they don't, and you suspect things have gotten bad again then make an anonymous call. I hope your husband wakes up and stops enabling her...personally I don't know how you can stand it. He's not doing his grandson any favors :rolleyes:

  12. Fran

    Fran Former Site Owner

    <span style='font-size: 11pt'>You are in an unenviable position of being a step parent. You don't have much say in what her home looks like. It's unfortunate that her mom and dad don't realize that the baby suffers. Would her sister call child protective services?
    My difficult child is not at the top of the list of good housekeepers but he doesn't have a child. I was concerned about bugs and him being asked to move out so we worked something out. He has some help cleaning his apt. He pays her to help him every 3 wks or so. Not a lot but it's enough to keep the Board of Health from evicting him. It doesn't seem to bother him but he functions less well in that sort of chaos.
    In the meantime, I'm sorry about the baby and that the bio grandparents don't seem to be willing to take a stand to advocate for those that can't advocate for themselves. It's not punishment for difficult child but help for the baby.</span>
  13. rejectedmom

    rejectedmom New Member

    I do think that it is too late for DSS to take action since the mess has been cleaned up but you have pictures. I think you could write them a letter with the pictures enclosed and tell them exactly what you found, what your concerns are, and what solution her parents have decided on and ask that DSS moniter the situation. -RM
  14. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Just because the place is "cleaned up" does not mean that it will
    not be equally as filthy in a week...or two, at the most. I know
    from experience that a filthy difficult child enjoys a clean environment for
    as long as it stays clean without any further effort. It will be
    like a vacation in a hotel.......and then........it will look
    just as it did before. DDD
  15. 1905

    1905 Well-Known Member

    I truly think they will not take a child for having a dirty house. Sad from your perspective, but keeping in mind you want for the baby, maybe you could hire someone to go in there once a week. I know, why should you have to do this? Or go in there, and don't even engage her in an arguement- but help her clean, knowing full well she may not help. Clear your mind of any anger and tell yourself over and over...its for the baby. Sometimes a young kid just doesn't understand as we do. They don't care. We can't make our difficult child kids care- I work with kids who have parents that don't care, and not much is done by "the state". I can understand how you don't want her in the house, maybe if she has a good relatiosnhip with husband, and he is willing to help financialy- he can give conditional help. I'll do this... if you do this...type of thing. Sending hugs and understanding the heartbreak. Alyssa
  16. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    A child will be removed from a squalid house in NY if the proper authorities are notified. Normally, I would say to let the grandparents address this with difficult child, but this issue will directly impact the baby's health & mental well-being. I know this personally because I was raised in squalid conditions. The neglect of the household often extends to the child: lack of medical and dental care, poor personal hygiene, dirty and ill-fitting clothing. Friends never come over, it becomes a shameful secret that permeates your life. It continues to affect you into adulthood; I know I become physically stressed out in overly cluttered or dirty surroundings. Nothing is ever clean enough. It's no life for an innocent child. Please contact someone and show the photos.
  17. Jen

    Jen New Member

    been there done that. In my case my difficult child an his ex fiance were bad house keepers together but no where close to waht ou are saying. Children services intervened because there were several dirty diapers, curdled milk bottles, adn dirty dishes in the bathtub because their sink garbage disposal became disfunctioning. Chile was taken away for a period of time, that is when my sons horror began, adn she got the baby back with her mom as the supervisee, and my son allowed no vistis.

    I had taken the baby she was 12 months at the time, and said she could not return until the house was clean. I never cam back to check it, we lived an hour away. His ex fiance comes back gets the granbaby, and tells me the place is cleaned up. Few days later the SW intervened

    This SW knew I did this and I was considered a bad person in this because they [placed the major blame on my son from previous circumstances.

  18. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    Is she still in the hospital? I would contact social services there.
  19. ctmom05

    ctmom05 Member

    <span style='font-family: Fixedsys'> <span style='font-size: 11pt'>The things that would be good for your grandchild might not necessarily be good for the parents.

    As much as your heart might ache for what Tyler is having to put up with, it would be enabling his parents to step in and pay to have their housework done for them on a regular basis.

    Calling whatever department or agency that handles child protective service issues in your area should, at least, generate a docmented concern. Living in squalor sometimes paves the way to true neglect.</span> </span>
  20. TrishaBC

    TrishaBC New Member

    I agree that you should wait till it's bad again, as awful as that sounds. If they check right now and it's good, you may be deemed a troublemaker and they will not take you as serious. And go annyonamious (SP) with your complaint, there's no need to put yourself out there.

    When my difficult child still lived with his bio parents and was just 6 months old, I went to go visit him. It was about 11-12:00, just about lunchtime when I got there and everyone was still in bed. Some person who was sleeping on their couch let me in, I went to the babies room to get him and he was wide awake in his crib, which was crawling with maggots. I just about puked. I took him, left a note for the parents that we went to luch and called social services to go see. They did go there, and simply bought the bio parents a new mattress for the crib and told them to clean the place up. They did go check again a couple days later, but they never did anything about the fact that he had been sleeping in a crib full of maggots.