My therapist appointment to discuss court

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by klmno, Mar 17, 2009.

  1. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    I saw my therapist today. She said she used to work in the system and all these juvenile courts around here decide before court what the outcome is going to be. She said that is what was going on yesterday when everyone was in the courtroom except difficult child and me and they had to go over the PO's memo that she'd just put out. She said the GAL had obviously gone along with the idea that difficult child should be in state juvy.

    She said what did not make sense was the gal trying to turn it into a trial against me. That it seemed absurd for her to put the message out there in court in front of difficult child that he needed to go to prison but it was his mother's fault. She said if gal had really thought that difficult child's issues were just a result of me, she would have advocated for difficult child to live somewhere else but that made no sense either b./c no mental health professional had even reported a concern that I had caused issues in difficult child. Also, they kept referring to "my issues" but never said what they thought those issues were.

    She also seemed shocked about the GAL not concentrating more on the psychiatrist's recommendations for Residential Treatment Center (RTC) and that state juvy would be detrimental to difficult child. She also noted that it was obviously planned ahead because gal knew I was seeing a therapist but never brought it up or asked me about it under oath but told the judge after I was off the stand that I refused to deal with my own issues. She said it didn't add up because none of it had anything to do with difficult child's punishment and that people in the system knew there were a LOT worse parents than me and they repetitively would send kids back to them. I wish there was someone on this board who worked in the system who could explain the GAL's reasoning to me. LOL! I keep wondering why on earth the GAL could possibly think that trashing me in court, resulting in totally discrediting anything I try to say or do could possibly be in difficult child's best interest when the GAL knows that I have been his strongest advocate and difficult child has NO advocate if I'm discredited. He's 14yo-it's not like he doesn't need someone looking out for him at all.

    She said she used to do assessments at the state juvy processing place and that unless things have changed in the past few years, difficult child would do hard time- no Residential Treatment Center (RTC)- and he would be there for well over a year- probably close to 2 or 3, unless they somehow focused more on mental health and an incentive for an early out. She told me the obvious- just try to accept it more a little each day and try to put my life back together. She didn't know if they could still order me into therapy or anything else now that difficult child has been transferred to state care. She said he is still under this jurisdiction in a way- that after a year or some time, the state would have to report to this court how difficult child was progressing and that that court would not be transferred even if I moved, however, if I moved awway from here, she doubted there would be any problem having probation/parole transferred to the new area. She said she didn't blame me for wanting to move, for several reasons. I swear, I sooo wish I had moved us out of this area last year.

    I keep thinking there should be an appeal but I have nothing left to fight with. There are ways the courts could make sure I didn't pull difficult child from Residential Treatment Center (RTC) without consequences. His defense attnorney never once spoke to the psychiatrist or advocated for a mental health solution- he kept saying that was up to the gal. The gal wanted to keep the focus on me. If the PO made accusations, shouldn't someone have checked the validity? No one addressed anything when I was doing everything in my power to prevent things from getting to the point of the last arreest. Instead of taking any responsibility, they point the finger at me and sent difficult child to state juvy and completely ignore going to the next level of care. Of course, previously they kept saying that we couldn't jump to a Residential Treatment Center (RTC) level of care and they have to see if their way works first.

    Well, difficult child's defense attny just called. He answered a WHOLE lot of these questions. For one, since difficult child was in court for an arrest, the judge could NOT order Residential Treatment Center (RTC). If the judge had the court on my motion in Jan, before this last arrest, the judge could have ordered Residential Treatment Center (RTC). Great. And the GAL- he said it was the way she advocated for a child, in so many words (but a little more direct- about ability), but if I filed a complaint against her or anything at all it would either fall on deaf ears or there would be nasty recourse from her that could include making sure difficult child never came back home after his release from state Department of Juvenile Justice. (That statement alone confirms my suspicions that some of these people make decisions based on the beefs with the parent, not what is in the best interest of the child. Doesn't the judge know that- or do judges not care, since judges were attny's before they were judges?) He said the GAL did not base her recommendation on what the PO wrote in her memo but has no idea what she wanted all along because they "do not communicate well". He said he understood why I was concerned over her advocating for Department of Juvenile Justice instead of what the psychiatrist recommended and the fact that she said the things about me and some other things. But he said it would make things worse for difficult child to fight this, appeal it, or complain about it. Sooo...he said when difficult child is close to being released, I could ask the court to appoint a different GAL but not get into reasons why- just act like I want a fresh pair of eyes.

    He said difficult child's case and commitment to state greatly disturbed him and that he'd probably spent 15 hours on it unpaid, just trying to figure out a better way. He said he would keep fighting but sees no way to win and it would just drag difficult child's time locked up out longer.
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2009
  2. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member


    K...I am gonna tell you somethings as I see them from reading your posts over the years. I think some of this could have been avoided if you had done things a bit differently and you may want to think about that for when difficult child does come home. Notice I did say when because I do think he will come home.

    I remember when difficult child first got in trouble and they ordered the MST guy. You really balked at that and I dont think you should have. I would have taken that service. If you really read up on what MST is it could have helped. Yes it is behavior mod but behavior mod can be extremely helpful for mood disorder people...or all people. And MST trains the caregivers to be the "therapists" so to speak. And no one says you cant have a psychiatrist in addition to the MST guy too. Its a whole community deal. I think that was one big mistake that probably really put a big red flag next to you.

    The next one is I think you gave too much information about yourself to everyone. I dont think the courts needed to know as much as they ended up knowing. No one dealing with Cory knows that I was raped or that my mother abused me. They didnt need to know that. None of their business. I never told them that I was in counseling or if I wasnt. Again...not their business. They can ask if there is a family history of something but that is about all. This gave people too much info to use against you.

    The third thing is...and this one is the hardest for me to put into that I think difficult child has learned to play the bipolar card. I know you are going to deny this one to the hilt but I just cant believe that he doesnt have some control over his actions right now. Otherwise his doctors would be screaming to change his medications because he would be so unstable and out of control in all aspects. As a bipolar person...I know how to play that card. I have seen it played. Sometimes you dont even know you are doing it until called on it.

    I know you probably arent gonna agree with a thing I have said here Please print this post out and save it for later. Read it in 3 months...6 months...a year. See if maybe something I said makes more sense when things arent so raw. I dont mean to say anything to hurt you. I am saying all this after going through years of raising a teen who has been through both juvenile justice and adult corrections. I dont want to see you here on the board when difficult child is 22 like Cory and he has headed off to adult jail. Please take what I say with all the love I have written it.
  3. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Actually, your 3rd is the only one I do agree with. LOL! I thinkk difficult child learned to play me against the system and vice versa as much as anything. the first suggestion- I just can't regret it under the circumstances and situation at the time. I won't get into it all again but I would make the same choice. If the judge agreed with it, I can't beleive I'm the only one who thought it was a reasonable and competent decision. As far as the 2nd: I was under oath during testimony and questioning by gal. I have no idea why she had to know everything about my life- I found it all uncomfortable and a violation in a way. But, I could not hold this info back after she had already threatened dss and so forth before. The fact that I revealed those things about my family was the only thing that kept dss from calling my bro right away before yesterday. I really had no choice on that one, Janet, if I was going to protect difficult child from them. These people (GAL, PO, Judge, etc) had been trying to force me to let difficult child have more contact with my family. They had to know why I was not comfortable with that. The gal had been trying to blame me for all difficult child's problems from the very beginning- my position was that if they were ever going to remove difficult child from my custody for any reason or if something happened to me, that I did not think it was in difficult child's best interest to send him to my family. Being on the witness stand, I pretty much had to answer the 5 million questions the GAL asked before and after.

    As far as him coming home- I don't think he will ever live with me again before his 18th birthday. So, I hope they are all right- I sincerely hope this commitment was in difficult child's best interest.
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2009
  4. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I wish I had some good advice but I do want you to know you and your difficult child are in my daily prayers. (((Hugs)))
  5. ML

    ML Guest

    You continue to stay in my prayers. I'm so sorry about all of this.
  6. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I know you must be sick of reading the same advise from me. on the other hand, I feel confident that you know that I sincerely care and do wish that there had been a better resolution for you...and your son.

    You've got to accept the things you can not change. You used up all your courage trying to change what you could. Now, it really is time for you to find the wisdom to know that difference.

    Keep seeing your therapist if it helps you. Find cards or clip out newspaper articles or magazine features to include in frequent mailings to your difficult child. No matter where he is, mail will be welcome. Chances are you will not be allowed to send anything else to him.

    See if there is a Department of Juvenile Justice parent support group online. Sometimes there is and I understand it helps. Make a list of project at home according to degree of difficulty and cost so you can feel like you are positively accomplishing something as you check off do-it-yourself projects. Try to find something that you personally enjoy as an adult woman (not as a parent), lol. Find a volunteer group that can use a little of your help. Hone your work skills so you will be prepared for new opportunities.

    Do not hash and rehash these traumatic events because you have absolutely no way to change what has happened, no way to change the GAL, no way to change the PO, no way to change the Judge or the systems's methods. Thousands have traveled similar roads and had results that were not say the least.

    Think positively and pray if you are so inclined. We have had CD families who have been pleasantly surprised by the services/help/support given to their difficult child's via Department of Juvenile Justice facilities. Do not focus on how long he will be there. You can not set the time. Do focus on hoping that however long he is there he will benefit in the long run.

    Don't think for a minute that I am not sympathetic to your loss. Truly I am. on the other hand you have to become the healthiest adult you can be in order to have a pleasant future that sets an example for difficult child. Hugs. DDD
  7. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Thank you! DDD, those are pretty much my goals- I need to do a little each day to try to catch up with some over-due things. Getting the dogs groomed, for one. I guess it must take me longer than many to adjust to things- I don't think I will be finished crying within a week. LOL!

    He's in others' hands now and I will try to support whatever their methods are. I should know in a few weeks the range of "length of stay" (LOS) to expect. Apparently, they call the parents in and review things. It just isn't clear to me yet if they call them in early on to get social/family history, then call them in again after the evaluation is complete and the (LOS) and place he's going is determined. Anyway, they do notify the parents once this is determined.

    It will help for me to know if they end up with something closer to 1 year or 3 years. They can do either. The exact amount of time will depend on how he does there. My willingness to do whatever they want upon his release will play into whether he goes to a group home, my home, or turned over to dss for family placement afterwards.

    I can already say that I will not allow him to come home if the people in charge are convinced that I am his whole problem again. difficult child needs to be under the guardianship of someone they (his authorities in the system) trust, or no one will have a minute's peace. I've been doing this for 2 years under those circumstances and, in my humble opinion, it completely destroyed us.

    My guess is that he'll be in closer to 3 years (it says this is the max for a kid committed for an undetermined amoubnt of time) and difficult child will be 17 yo so, I think any idea of me being a part of any future raising him or being emotionally close to him as a parent is over. Yes, I already know, maybe he'll be better off. Apparently, that's what the system has already determined.
  8. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    You've gotten some good advice here, and the one I want to stand behind the most is that it's YOUR time now. You've worked so hard, fought so hard. You can't change the outcome. It will take you awhile to get used to taking care of you,and to find the energy and even willpower to WANT to do things for yourself. Cultivate friendships .. figure out what social outlets you'd enjoy the most ... join clubs... whatever works for you. It's time to exhale.
  9. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    One thing to remember is that you will always be his mother and he will always be your son. Cory was basically raised during his teen years out of my home but yet he is extremely close to all of us. The bond you have with difficult child will not be broken no matter where he goes.
  10. Star*

    Star* call 911

    Just sending some hugs -
  11. aeroeng

    aeroeng Mom of Three

    If it were true that he is better off with out you, then you would not hurt as much. You are still the most important person in his life. Because you are the one that loves him.
  12. rejectedmom

    rejectedmom New Member

    I am so sorry you are hurting and feeling like you have been run over by the system. I hope that you can heal and that the future holds better times for you and your difficult child. -RM