Interagency Serivice Coordination meeting, how to be prepared

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by wethreepeeps, May 15, 2011.

  1. wethreepeeps

    wethreepeeps New Member

    A very honest social worker at the Department of Developmental Disabilities told me the purpose of this meeting is to get everyone in the same room to convince me that they'll give my family the moon and stars if I just agree not to abandon difficult child to the dept. of children's services. difficult child has been hospitalized three times in the last three months, we've had to rehome our pets due to multiple instances of him trying to suffocate them, and in the last couple of weeks, he runs out the door every time he's angry, sometimes staying gone 6-8 hours before the police find him. Last week I blocked the door so he couldn't leave, and he broke out a window and climbed out of it.

    Has anyone been to one of these meetings? Anyone have an experience with legally abandoning a child? I wrote up a 8 page document listing all hospitalizations, therapists, doctors, special programs we've tried over the years, hoping they'll see I've done everything I know to help my son, but that it boils down to the fact that you cannot teach someone to have empathy. You can only teach them how to fake it when it's convenient to them.
  2. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    I am so sorry you are going through all this. I have never heard of this meeting so can't offer any help. Just want to give you {{{{(((HUGS)))}}}}
  3. pepperidge

    pepperidge New Member

    Would they and you consider placing him in an Residential Treatment Center (RTC)? It seems that is what he might need.

    Hope that Timer Lady sees this post; if not you might consider sending her a private message. She has been through some similar stuff and might have some good advice for you.
  4. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    You know, I think the pages/history is a good thing. Documenting what our difficult children, and the family, has been through is an important step in getting others to see the "real situation".

    I'm not sure about the actual intent of this particular meeting, but it usually is a coordination of services between school, social workers, agencies that provide services to kids, etc. It's a "whole picture" kind of thing.

    I'm sorry that I don't recall, but were you leaning towards turning your son over to the state? Had you started the process and then then the meeting was called?

  5. wethreepeeps

    wethreepeeps New Member

    I want him in Residential Treatment Center (RTC), and he's been approved through the dept. of developmental disabilities, but there's no bed for him anywhere, so unless I want to bring him home when he's discharged from acute care on Wednesday, then I have to abandon him to the state so they'll place him in foster care until a placement opens up.

    In theory the meeting is to coordinate services, but the social worker on my case very bluntly told me that since I've made a decision towards out of home placement, the meeting will all be about pressuring me to change my mind and letting them convince me that MST will solve everything if I just give it a try again.
  6. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I had to enter into a custody agreement with DSS in order to get Youngest care years ago, it was a funding issue. They fought tooth and nail for me not to give her into their care, they kept throwinng more more services at her that weren't working. In the end, it was a compromise... a temporary custody agreement for the sole purpose of funding for residential treatment. Luckily for her there was a bed available, however, so foster care wasn't necessary. I had a document similar to what you have, listing her hospitalizations and treatments and failures at improvement. I asked if they were willing to wait for one more suicide attempt before they would help her. I also went so far as to file the court papers to place her in their custody.. and that's when they finally agreed to the temporary agreement. They didn't want it going in front of a judge who would likely be ticked at their lack of resopnse to her needs. I withdrew my motion once we had an agreement in place.

    Stand your ground...
  7. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I am sorry that you are having so many problems. I would NOT agree to MST as what will fix everything. I don't know if the diagnosis's are correct or not, but it sounds like you have done everything you possible can and it is hurting your other child to have him there. Be aware, and make them aware, that he is going to be bigger and stronger than you in the very near future, if he isn't already. This means that youa re going to be in danger from him if he has no empathy. When he cannot have/get/do what he wants he is going to hurt you and possible hurt you to the point that you are permanently harmed and/or killed. This can also happen to your other child. Push HER needs into their faces. It sounds very much like keeping him home is dangerous and may endanger her and your lives. What is CPS going to do if you have asked and begged for help and he kills her or you? Who is responsible then if their MST therapy hasn't worked?

    I have seen other parents here trying to get services the way you are. Regardless of what they promise, there will be a waiting period before it starts. A couple of weeks, maybe a couple of months. In that time he will be home iwth you and you will still be dealing with his problems alone. From your other posts it sounds like your instincts are screaming at you that it is not safe for him to be at home.

    If this is the case, do NOT give in to them. The biggest mistakes that most of us make as parents happen when our instincts are saying one thing and the "experts" are saying another. We doubt ourselves because they are the "experts" and "know more than I do" and we go along with them. I am begging you to NOT fall into that trap. Yes, they ARE experts. But they are experts in the system and in getting parents to go along. They are NOT NOT NOT experts in your son, his problems, what has already failed to help, your daughter, what she needs, what he has done that has hurt her, and in you, what you need, and how to keep your family safe. YOU are the expert in those things. YOU. So go with your instincts if they say this is all just empty promises or that you have already been there done that and it hasn't worked.

    Above all, insist on what will keep everyone SAFE and do NOT let them put your daughter's needs and your needs below your son's needs. They may even tell you that her (your daughter's) needs are not important in this meeting. Ask them why her safety isn't as important as keeping him at home. What they will do when you cannot keep her safe from him? Take her away from you? Gee, wouldn't that add trauma onto terror and injury? I have had them threaten that - to take my daughter away if my son hurt her again while they were trying to tell me it was cruel to have him in a psychiatric hospital where he could get help and we could heal. So they didn't want him in the psychiatric hospital where he already was and they wanted to place her in foster care instead. Be aware that they may offer to take your daughter instead. It will be FAR less expensive and difficult to place her instead of him. It would also traumatize her hugely and she NEEDS you and her home.

    Follow your instincts. Take an advocate and/or a lawyer with you to protect YOUR interests and help document what was said. Record the meeting if at all possible - even if you don't tell them youa re doing it. In some (many) states it is legal to record a conversation as long as 1 party is aware of the recording. That means that you can record it if you are part of the discussion and know that you are recording it. You can search online to find out the laws in your state. If nothing else, take a friend or relative with you to take notes of the meeting so that you have a witness to all that they say/do/promise.

    Many hugs and lots of strength and support.
  8. wethreepeeps

    wethreepeeps New Member

    thank you for the support. I just want this meeting over with. My daughter is so terrified that they're going to arrest me and she'll never see me again that she's having nightmares and anxiety attacks. My son is aware that the plan is for him not to come home and he's shown no emotion whatsoever. I am getting a letter from both his pediatrician and his psychologist tomorrow to take with me, supporting residential placement, but neither can attend since the meeting was just called on Friday, they're both already booked up. His school guidance counselor says she'll come. I don't have any family that can attend, so other than the school counselor I'll be on my own.

    We did MST once already, when he got out of the sub acute program two years ago. So you can see how much good it did, since we're here now.
  9. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Its different everywhere... but I'm finding that if its causing a problem for "me", nobody listens at all. BUT, if its causing serious problems for another child in the same home... SOME agencies/specialists/etc. will get the message that they can't solve one childs problem by destroying another... SO, don't push what the risk is to you (don't ignore it, either, but...), push what the risk is to your daughter...