difficult child's parole requirements

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by klmno, Aug 13, 2009.

  1. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    The PO visited difficult child today and he told him the requirements we know of so far. Upon release difficult child will have 30 days house arrest. No problem. Then, (oh, here it comes), a mentor weekly changing to every other other week, therapy weekly, PO once a month, and a job whenever he's not in school for the summer or over spring or holdiay break. difficult child will be 15yo. I have no idea where he expects him to get a job at that age and just being released from state Department of Juvenile Justice but I can tell you this, I can't work and provide for the kid and have my schedule revolve around taking him to work and therapy and picking him up, having him home for a mentor's visit whenever the mentor says, plus accommodate the regular mom stuff like IEP meetings, dr's appts, and everything else. Of course since difficult child is a juvenile with no driver's license, the axe is hanging over my head to make sure he is all these places or else I get taken to court.

    I'm seriously thinking about writing a letter to the PO and Department of Juvenile Justice counselor and telling them that if difficult child needs all this, they can send him to a place that can provide all this and I'll pay the CS while he's there. When difficult child gets himself off parole and out from under their nose and their requirements, if difficult child is willing to live by my rules he is welcome to come back home. Also, this way they can't have any doubt that whatever trouble difficult child gets into while on parole is not my fault.

    I'm already bringing this up to difficult child and I mentioned it before to the PO but the PO is apparently ignoring it because he took papers to difficult child today to sign his "agreement" for all this and they said he was coming home.
  2. maril

    maril New Member

    It's discouraging to hear your request was ignored; will you still write the letter? You would think there would be consideration for your circumstances. My difficult child's PO had told him about job opportunities through a program that serves juvenile court (community service as well as paid employment opportunities connected with restitution).
  3. Christy

    Christy New Member

    It's a good idea to send a letter explaining the situation. It may fall on deaf ears but I'd put it in concerns in writing.
  4. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    Where is difficult child normally while you are at work? That is where the mentor should pick him up. The mentor can double as transportation to his volunteer job.
  5. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    The mentor apparently has to come to the house and is not a form of transportation. Since difficult child was in middle school, he attended YMCA day camps during the summer which met my work schedule. We had planned for him to do their "leader-in-training" program for his current age range, which has the same hours. I scheduled my vacation times to cover some of his holiday breaks from school and the rest of the school vacation, I would work part time hours.

    As far as restitution, I had to cash in some of difficult child's education fund to cover me being unemployed as a result of all this **** last winter. I am paying off difficult child's restitution with that, too, and I need to get his damage to the house repaired. Now, difficult child doesn't know I only cashed in part of it- not all of it. I have told him that he will have to work to pay for his college if he wants to go- I figured that would make him a little more motivated to keep those grades up, too, because he does want to go and he knows it's possible to get scholarships. But, I didn't expect him to get a "real" job until he was 16 and I would contribute to him getting a car because I only have one. Not only am I concerned about the feasibility of this, but these Department of Juvenile Justice people do seem to steer kids towards working instead of graduating from high school- I am VERY concerned that difficult child will end up hanging out with older kids and just quitting school, thinking he can just get a good job somewhere.
  6. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    JJJ is right. You dont have to be there when the mentor is there. The mentor can help him find a job. He can also take him to therapy. There are lots of places for a 15 year old to find work too. McDonalds hires teens. So does Burger King. They even hire teens with legal trouble. In the summer he can check with lawn care services.
  7. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    That would be different but the PO told me that they contract out to a company to do the mentoring and I checked the company's web site. Both the PO and the website indicated there is a flat fee for so many visits to the kid (the mentor is really a "monitor") and there is NO transportation included. The PO told me he might be able to get the mentor to do an occassional transport, but really, the mentor is not going to pick difficult child up every morning and drop him off every evening and work it around mine and difficult child's work schedule. They don't do that kiind of stuff here. And they want me monitoring difficult child constantly- remember his age- we aren't talking about a 17yo. difficult child is 14 now and turns 15 in Jan. and will probably get released in Feb for good behavior.

    Actually, difficult child has one option here- he can choose to do another 6 mos in the state facility and then he's done, instead of coming home on parole. But, I'm not sure I could talk him into this or that it would be in his best interest. I honestly think difficult child needs to get 3 points- 1) After what he did, he'll come home when I say he can come home, and 2) I make the rules in my house and if he's living here, he has to live by them no matter what anyone else tells him as long as I'm not abusing or neglecting him- if he's in trouble legally then he has to meet the more stringent of the two, and 3) he needs to figure out that the life he had at home is not as bad as he thought it was- if he lives somewhere else that's "mainstream" and he's "monitored" just as much, he'll get the clue pretty quick, I think.

    And the PO needs to get 3 points- 1) I'm not lieing to these people- it will take more than pills and behavior mod to help my son but I'm not "covering" for him, (they should take note how many times I've called the cops on difficult child-including this last time) and 2) we'd be a lot further along if they'd learn to back a parent up instead of treating the parent like the delinquent in front of the child, and 3) I can't accommodate all their "community supports" which I really don't think they have a clue about what a real support system is- so what do they think is in difficult child's best interest- a group home where they won't make difficult child do half of this and the PO said would make difficult child worse, or a mom who can do half but not all
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2009
  8. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    If he is on house arrest, you wont be doing the monitoring, the ankle bracelet will be doing the monitoring. You will be working. He is going to be 15...not 4. 15 is well over the age at which you can leave them home alone. I would laugh at them if they told me I had to stay home and stare at him 24/7. They cant expect you to do that. Monitoring him means making sure the phone is in working order and that your physically see him alive and well before you go to work and when you get home. If he chooses to break house arrest while you are gone, that is on him.

    How many hours of mentoring is he supposed to get per week? I find it hard to believe someone is supposed to mentor a teen boy for many hours while sitting quietly at the kitchen table staring at each other. The best mentoring is done while out in the community in real life situations. That can only happen when the mentor picks up the child and takes him out for the afternoon.

    You live in an area where your son should be able to pick up the bus to meet you at some of these appts so you dont have to miss work so much. Or he can go on his own. He doesnt need you to go to every therapy appointment or every PO appointment. You can phone in from work for the first few minutes to talk then let them get on with it.

    He will be a big boy. He can do this.
  9. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    When Youngest had a mentor, that mentor came to the house after school and drove her all kinds of places. Weekly therapy seems reasonable to me; Youngest had to do this for awhile. It meant I had to take a long lunch one day a week. I would bet the weekly requirement wouldn't last forever.. therapists can't be forced to see a patient that doesn't need help as he/she gets better.

    Another option for a job for a 15 year old is a bag boy at a grocery store. I can tell you with 100% certainty that fast food places don't check for legal trouble.. because of the number of Youngest's friends that worked there.
  10. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    I agree these things would be great for difficult child, but I can't accommodate all of them. The mentor and PO, I agreed to and thought the time requirements from me would be minimal. The job and going back to the therapist stuff on top of it puts it over the line. Keep in mind, Crazy, the people conctracted for difficult child are thru Department of Juvenile Justice and the requirements are different than when they are coming thru mental health. For instance, difficult child has to be seen/monitored so many times a month. One has to be face-to-face with the PO. The mentor does the other and reports it to the PO. If we are late getting home due to traffic or something, this is a PO violation for us if the mentor wanted to come by that day. The mentor will be the first dropped because it's Department of Juvenile Justice funding paying for it. Therapy- my gut sees it heading to mst or in-home therapy. Mainly because people are flippiing over difficult child being monitored and the recommendation for family therapy.

    I've written a draft letter to the PO. It says I wish I could give difficult child an ideal home life, but admittedly, I can't.
  11. maril

    maril New Member

    I saw your earlier post where you said you don't want your son to be encouraged to put work before school and I wholeheartedly agree that our teens' education should come first.

    Since your son would be required to work during the summer and on breaks from school and he would be coming home in February, maybe by the time spring break comes, he could have a do-able plan? I guess that depends on how long you will have until spring break occurs in your school district; ours will be in April, likely the week following the Easter holiday. Also, in the summer, working will keep him busy and hopefully won't interfere with any classes he might take in the summer. I know it is difficult to juggle all your commitments plus provide transportation to different places, etc.

    We are fortunate to have public transportation available and my son has used it when we have been in a bind and couldn't provide him a ride from outpatient rehab. Actually, he has adapted rather well to traveling by bus to the city and elsewhere, unfortunately, not always for acceptable purposes. :faint:
  12. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Are you sure they won't let you use his previous therapist for weekly therapy? That would make the most sense and ensure continuity of care. You might ask the PO about that. There's no reason to start over with a brand new therapist.

    Let me ask you this... what would you have preferred the recommendations to be? In an ideal world, of course....
  13. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    K...I think you are putting the cart before the horse. No one can give anyone the ideal, Leave it to Beaver home life anymore. Single mom's have to work. Everyone knows that. I think you are putting more pressure on yourself than what is going to be expected. These people are there to honestly help your son succeed after his incarceration. They really dont want him to fail and go back in. It looks bad on their books. That is why they put all these plans in place. Just tell them -assuming you have a job by then that interferes with you taking him back and forth places- that you need appointments after work or help with transporting him to these appointments. Not a big deal. If a PO has to go get him, they will. They have county or state cars for just that purpose. You just have to work with these people.
  14. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Well, if people in our system were reasonable, that would be fine. But we already have over 2 years of history with this csu (court services unist) and it difficult child comes home with more requirements than he went in with. They do want him monitored 24/7. This isn't me negotiating with them. These aren't recommendations by somebody- these are parole requirements. I think there is more of a lesson for difficult child to get hinmself out of this before coming home without my life turning into an impossible nightmare this time. Here's what I'm thinking to myself: Remember the PO andd her super last year? Remember how many times I was told that they don't care if I can afford it or if I lose my job- that it was my problem and their problem was making sure difficult child "got what he needed and was ordered"? Remember how that turned out? These aren't dss people who are trying to work out family issues.
  15. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    The only way any human being can be monitored 24/7 is in a locked facility, period. Have they put 24/7 in the requirements you mentioned above? If not, dont' worry about it. Just do what you can.

    I really think you need to be careful in how you approach this. How about saying, ok, I want to comply, but here are my problems... how can we solve them? Instead of saying, NO I can't do this... I have a feeling all that will get you is an immediate wall, and will set the tone for the future.
  16. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Well, here's my draft letter: