Today’s story of incredible persistence and resilience in the face of overwhelming challenges –
I was rescued from deadly abuse and trafficking as a child. I was fostered, adopted out, but soon after my parents both died. I got pregnant during my downspiral and ended up raising my premature son alone in a shelter for years until I aged out. I’ve spent my entire life giving him everything he deserved and loving him so much more purely than I ever knew. Now we could be torn apart.
A 51A (Investigation of Child Abuse and/or Neglect) was filed by my son’s teacher. Despite the fact he’s a happy and popular kid, is on a waitlist for therapy, that he has consistent check-ins for his medication and ADHD, that I’m constantly in contact with his school and counsellor regarding his progress and his absent work…
His mental health has been great and he simply just wants to goof off with his friends instead of reading Shakespeare. She might have been insulted I didn’t remember to reply to another “How can I motivate your teenager in my classroom?” she sent on Monday, but I had spoken to my son about the email and had informed him to start staying after twice a week again like she had requested.
So she.. reports me to the Division of Children and Families?
I have been so overwhelmed tending to the needs of my two other children who have chronic medical needs and are in and out of hospital frequently.. but I never let a single ball drop. I made every appointment, I pushed for all these resources for my children, I’m keeping up with all of these communications and advocating for my child. I thought I was truly doing everything I could for my son and he says himself that he’s been happy, just.. doesn’t care about English class. I can’t breathe – what is going to happen to my family? How do I disprove a claim that is so.. vague??
The social worker already called back to confirm they’re going to move forward with the investigation. My youngest is autistic, entirely nonverbal, and has type 1 diabetes. I’ve been sobbing all night trying to imagine her in a foster home… please someone give me some advice. I fought my whole life to keep my baby safe. How am I losing them now?
Some solid advice came back –
Do you have a support system? Don’t assume you will lose them. It’s an investigation. Breathe. Get your home in order. Clean to the max. Make sure food is always in fridge. Make sure no chemicals or otc drugs are in reach. Lock it all up. Print copies of all your communications with the school and medical personnel and any organization where you were pushing for resources and keep in a binder for easy reference. Ask the doctors for all the children’s medical records NOW to show they have been seen consistently. Make notes of your conversations with your son so you don’t forget things in the moment when they are asking questions and it’s nerve racking. Keep all of this documentation organized and easily reachable at a moments notice and do it before they come back.
I agree with this little rant from someone else – All of this stress added to her already loaded plate caring for her kids with medical needs. All this extra stress, worry and basically trauma they are putting on her is so uncalled for. I understand that DCF has to investigate claims, but the system is honestly so disastrous, it’s rarely genuinely helpful to kids/families and doing this to families that don’t need any intervention at all is just cruel.