PO/difficult child Update

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by klmno, Jun 15, 2011.

  1. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    PO called yesterday- now he's denying that he ever said Residential Treatment Center (RTC) is an option. He said he'd recommend it and not stand in the way if I could pay for it or my insurance would- that can't happen at this point. He said he had to get his recommendation in for difficult child's placement after his release from Department of Juvenile Justice. He's going to recommend a group home with reunifications efforts (ie, the ultimate goal is that difficult child would return home at some point) but the final decision isn't up to him. If this doesn't get approved, and in all likelihood it won't because there are only two left in the state and MANY kids in Department of Juvenile Justice who have NO family at all, then there are only two choices left- and neither are good.
  2. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Well just dandy. I would push for the last option available K. Job corps. Group home or job corps.
  3. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Well, the problem with that is that I won't push for anything that requires difficult child quitting high school or getting a GED. difficult child is still wanting to go to college, achieves in school in Department of Juvenile Justice and just finished 10th grade with an average of 95.5 in his core classes (not all 8 classes, just the 4 most important acedemic ones). How on earth can I refuse him on this when it's his ONLY constructive goal?? I am fully aware that he pumps it up more than he really means it just to manipulate me, but dropping out or getting a GED is too permanent on this matter, in my humble opinion, for him only 16 and just finishing 10th grade. If he doesn't want to quit school how can I put him in a position where he'd have to when this is the only thing the kid has going for him?
  4. exhausted

    exhausted Active Member

    If you can't do the Residential Treatment Center (RTC) or group home, will they send him with trial home placement? This usually includes a tracker, PO, strict court orders, drug testing, and in-home therapist. I don't know-it may not be the best but at least you have support. Usually if they screw up on these deals they then have to put them in custody again. Just a thought. I can't believe this JJS worker would send him back and not seek what is best for him and his family-he isn't the "guardian" of state funds. Frustration! At least ask the judge for what you want-hopefully there will be a hearing before they release him,right?? Hugs!
  5. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    All I can say is I'm sorry. I know you have tried and tried to find the best course and obviously he is a bright teen. on the other hand, I assume all you can do is list all the alternatives and chose the best available. I know you are traditionally educated and that course seems like the right path. on the other hand my sister's son (she has multiple degrees and her husband is a college grad) dropped out of high school and got his GED. He now makes close to $500,000 annual with a GED and his wife makes almost as much with no post high school education. The high school courses offer in Fl by Department of Juvenile Justice are not on an above average level as they want the kids to gain credits. It is a double whammy when you have a record and a GED applying for work but if you have a goal (and the smarts) you can move to your highest level. Just like all the rest of the milestones in life it is going to depend on him. It might appeal to him that he can skip up a level and take college courses sooner. Metaphorically (is that spelled right, lol) if he wants to run with the big dogs he could compete with the pack earlier which "could" enhance his self esteem. Of course you (and surely not me) are the one in the driver's seat. I completely believe your goal is the best opportunity for your son. Hugs. DDD
  6. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Here are some thoughts and positions I've taken- thrown out randomly.

    1) I told PO that I wanted it clear to everyone, I am NOT turning my back on my son or dis-owning him. My objective is to have family therapy prior to difficult child returning home, difficult child earning his way home by proving that he is trying now, gradually integrating difficult child back into the community, and giving us both some time to transition so neither of us are walking on egg shells and are a little more comforatble that things will go better than last time. I stressed that this is not only due to my safety (the only leg there is to stand on for difficult child getting into a group home) but also because I honesttly belive it's in difficult child's best interest, given how well (NOT) he transitioned last year.

    2) I still don't think I could actually bring myself to not pick my son up and allow him to get sent to my bro. I could, however, sit and have a conversation with PO, myself, and DSS about what is in my son's best interest, my concerns about trying to meet 15 requirements a PO throws out as "orders", not being able to meet them and keep a job, and none of them being anything helpful to difficult child's success anyway, etc.....whether or not that can happen, I don't know. The dss worker (not cps) in the last place I lived always agreed with my position- it wasn't me that was the problem and Department of Juvenile Justice should be dealing with things not dss. BUT in this state, if dss gets the kid, he goes to the first place they can get him in that costs them the least and that means if there;s ANY family member..well....I can't do that, I don';t think

    3) You bring up good points, DDD. I know this wasn't your main point but neither difficult child or me are focusing on how much money he might make in the future if he gets an education. From his point of view, he has been saying for 4-5 years that he wants to become a veterinarian. From my point of view, I realize that could change 15 times by the time he's 25yo but I don't really care. For one thing, I figure any education is never a waste. If difficult child is just saying all that to mainpulate me but it gets him another year of education, I don't really care while he's a teen. It's impossible though to become a vet without going to college- a very long time- which cost a lot of money- so the kid needs scholarships, should he ever really ever make it that far.

    4) difficult child has enough pain dealing with the fact that he knows I am the one saying he should not come straight home. He's dealing with that part ok, but still it is painful. Of course, I feel like he's just going to have to deal with it given what he did- twice- but I don't think going so far as doing something that ruins his dreams - even if he really hasn't 100% committed to them at this point- would serve to get more effort from him. His counselor and I had a brief conversation last weekend. The counselor said difficult child's big problem is that he gives up too easily. Yes, I know, and when he does, he bucks the rules no matter whose rules they are and digs himself in deeper. When he's "free" (ie, living outside Department of Juvenile Justice) it gets to the point of doing dangerous things, self-harming, and letting others cause bodily injury to him. He self- destructs. There's a fine line in there, too, between my son learning to gain a true confidence and earned pride instead of feeling a sense of entitlement or feeling like he's better than someone else. (That's the part the people in the court system just don't get- they think they do but what they order only serves to enable difficult child.) So, I think difficult child can deal with going to a group home or someplace if it's only a few months and he is in a position where he is working toward more freeedom- that might serve him very well. Plus, it buys time and gets closer to 18 yo.

    5) I HATE CSU people in this state. I would emancipate difficult child and let him live with me if I could. This decision is stemming as much from my hatred for CSU as anything. However, I can't get difficult child emancipated because difficult child is not employable yet- why? because I made the sd (thru difficult child's IEP) quit giving difficult child classes that taught him to do a job- like commercial cleaning- and give him classes that met "his" goals instead. These are the classes he's made As in so they are happy and difficult child got a little more educated. I don't know if that was the right thing to do or not, but I just can't bring myself to tell a kid- any kid- that just because you want a diploma with Spanish and History classes doesn't mean you can get one, when he's making As.

    6) Maybe I'm just trying to buy as much time as I can hoping difficult child will mature in the process. I don't know what else to do.
  7. ML

    ML Guest

    Dammit! I think you did the right thing with his classes and believe education may be the one thing that saves him. Hugs,
  8. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    thank you, ML!

    DDD, I re-read your post- the part about difficult child getting freedom (or independence) sooner is what I'm telling him about a group home. He wants more freedom than he can get in any reasonable family home. In most situations a kid just has to bite it. With my son, that approach leads to violence or dangerous behavior however, he isn't really at a stage where he can be thrown out to the wolves and expected to survive, so I am telling him a group home gives an intermediate solution. I will need to talk to him and others first, and find out exactly when (how old he'll be) when he'll get released before making any firmer position than I already have.

    All I know is that I cannot take another situation where a PO is throwing out whatever order that crosses their mind while using the threat of dss (ie, my bro) against me) and difficult child using this to walk all over me again. I can't handle it on any level and it obviously proved to only make difficult child worse.
  9. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    Have you looked at Boys Town? While not a true Residential Treatment Center (RTC), they have a real high school with a record of getting kids into college and they have enough structure that it may help him transition from life in hail to life in college. They operate on a sliding scale.
  10. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I was thinking along the lines of JJJ. Down here we do have some transitional living places that give kids that are coming out of care and wont be coming straight home..or might not ever go home.
  11. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    I'll try to check out Boys Town- I know nothing about it. DJ- are the places you are referring to funded by Department of Juvenile Justice or dss? difficult child can only go to a place funded by Department of Juvenile Justice or me in order to avoid being turned over to dss, and of course, Department of Juvenile Justice has to approve any placement.
  12. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Boys Town has a good reputation in Florida. Good idea and better than Job Corps for sure. I know how hard it is to work with the system and I really sympathize. You are being a Warrior Mom and exploring all options. Way To Go! DDD
  13. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Ok...other than Boys Town...which is privately funded...and Job Corps...which is publicly funded...I cant remember what I said...there is also a place run by the National Guard. I cant remember the name though. I will be honest. I would be surprised if you can find somewhere for difficult child to go, if the people at Department of Juvenile Justice wont approve it. I imagine they probably want him off their backs. Let me ask Jamie where his friends son went. He had a coworker who's son got in trouble about a year ago and they were able to send him off to a placement in lieu of going into Department of Juvenile Justice. He had a multitude of diagnosis's and Im sure the fact that he had parents working in law enforcement didnt hurt either.

    It was funny though, it was the first time her son ever got in legal trouble and Jamie had her call me to console her...lol. She was so scared to talk to anyone but Jamie told her that she shouldnt feel like a bad mom, it happened in the best of families, it happened in his...lol.
  14. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    thank you DJ & DDD!! It really stinks that dss has group homes and therapeutic foster homes but is now not allowed to place any kid in them unless/until all extended family members refuse the kid first. Why? It saves funding that way. None of these systems are doing things because it's in a kid's best interest- just another situation where they put a spin on words about to convince the public that they are "trying to prevent having to put a kid in the system" so the public assumes it's because that's in the best interest of the kid. In a very general sense, yes of course it is, but when the kid is already in a system, this hoovers because then the truth comes out- it's really about cost. Department of Juvenile Justice doesn't want him incarcerated due to funding, CSU (even though they come under Department of Juvenile Justice funding, they only get a designated portion or pool) wants the family to foot the whole bill and when their orders don't work, they get the kid back incarcerated so it stops coming from their pool of money. If they quit spending money hiring more people to do this kind of koi, they'd have money to spend on the kids. OK that was my vent for the day.