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grandbabymomma

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  1. Hi befuddled86, The law says a case can't drag on for more than 12 months. it also says some BS about "time is of the essence & blah blah." So, at the end of the 12 month's, you'll go to court for a review & DCF will ask you if you'll agree to permanent guardianship (like you agreeing means anything.) You will probably be like "what does that mean?" They'll amuse themselves & give you time to think about it, while they draw up the papers & threaten to take the kid if you don't agree with it. They have to close the case, no matter what or why, in 12 month's, probably because 12 month's SHOULD be enough time for a normal, loving, responsible parent to get it together! You will leave court, scratch your head & wonder how the hell those people get paid to do what ever it is they do! THEN, since your case is closed & "parent" still have rights, guess who gets to decide on visits with the deadbeat? YOU DO! DCF will stop visiting you & they'll stop acting like they care BUT, Dead beat will have them on his side if you decide the child should not be subjected to the lifestyle he chooses to live & don't let him visit! He will be able to drag you to court, on the tax payers dime & get a "free" attorney. You, probably strapped due to the expense of raising HIS offspring, probably won't hire an attorney because you did nothing wrong & don't need one! lol. And around and around we go. Judges get paid, DCF gets paid, attorneys get paid & the kids PAY! This system is broke & i'd love to rise up & raise hell but it occurred to me, last time I was dragged to court and left scratching my head, NOBODY CARES! I give up. I love my granddaughter & would have adopted her & tried to do right by her, but the power's that be (our f'd up system) has other ideas. My Granddaughter just turned 5 & I still have permanent guardianship of her. I love her dearly, but I have come to the conclusion that she will be better off with her mother because, now that she has the "right" to drag me to court when she doesn't get her way & DCF plays her game with her, my heart & sanity cannot take anymore! it's them against me. They win, Grand baby loses, Grandma avoids going to jail for contempt or dropping dead from the stress of it all! Good luck with your endeavors. I hope your case ends differently than ours. Don't let the know it all, negative jerks on this forum get to you.
  2. Perhaps having a frank conversation with the sue happy, over worked grand peeps would help! Something like "Gee, I'd love to help because I care about the child, but I'm afraid you will sue me if he bumps his head or skins his knee!" Let them chew on that & get more desperate for your help. Maybe they'll see the error of their ways (probably not.) But it would feel good to tell them! Good luck!
  3. If there is an open family court/dependency case, WE are paying her lawyer! The CPS, DCF, GAL and BOTH Bio parent's all have attorney's that work for the State! Look at the bottom of the last page of all mail you receive from the court & there will be a list of all the people that were present in court & who they work for. It will say "copies furnished to" and a list of everyone's names & who they work for. Good luck! I'm in a similar boat.. Try to speak to the GAL (Guardian ad litem.) They SHOULD want to hear your opinion.
  4. TomJack7799, WOW! WOW! WOW! Now your situation sounds JUST LIKE OURS! MY Granddaughter was 23 mos. old when we got her & she will be 5 in Nov! Obviously, we're still going through it.. We got permanent guardianship shortly after my last post (2 yrs. ago.) The parent's have done nothing to improve their situation. My son (baby's dad) became addicted to heroine & is now in jail. The mother has moved no less than 10 times in 2 years & continued to be involved with abusive paramour until about 6 mos. ago. She finally got rid of him after he nearly beat her to death AGAIN! Well, she didn't actually get rid of him. He's in jail for assault & battery, on her. She took me back to court for visitation in April & "won." She has visited with her 3 times. Baby screamed and cried & did not want to go with her. I just happened to come across this post & your comment tonight while using findlaw to research family law/adoption attorney's. I don't know why you "resurrected a two year old thread," but I'm very glad you did! Re-reading my post has helped to reinforced my determination to go ahead with the expensive and time consuming adoption process. So, thank you! Luckily, my husband has great benefits at work that include excellent health insurance & he also has a legal plan that will cover most of the legal cost for adoption! As for the $242.00 relative care giver stipend, $240.00 goes to preschool & she will go to kindergarten next year. I am very blessed to be in a financial situation that will allow me to tell the state, court, DCF and the other various agencies to keep their "help" & all the strings that bind my grandchild to them and the person that gave birth to her! I used to believe that the system was there to protect children. I even thought that we were on the same "side." I changed my mind when the court approved visitation for my 2 year old granddaughter at the county jail, to visit her mom. My belief that they were all nuts was confirmed when our caseworker tried to do a home study at the Schulzbacher homeless shelter! Luckily, the shelter had enough sense to deny the home study and visits... To say this has been a long, hard, scary and frustrating road, would be a huge understatement. I guess what I want everyone who reads this to know is 1- this 2 year old thread is still relevant and I hope that something that I shared helped someone, some way. If you get nothing else out of this and you've read all of this, know that 2 or 4 year's is NOT a long time, according to DCF. The struggle is real, hard & long! 2- it has been therapeutic to spill my thoughts & worries with other people in similar situations. I feel for & pray for all families that are dealing with DCF, court & abuse. 3- although it's sad, it's nice to know I'm not the only one. I hope my ramblings reassure others that they are not alone either. 4- all of the mean spirited, know it all's out there that feel the need to make stupid comments lives matter! Lol
  5. concernedgrandparent_2007, First, I'd like to tell you how sorry I feel for you & your grandson. I am in a similar situation. My granddaughter was removed from her mother (not my daughter) due to abuse by her paramour. My son is not fit to raise anything except my blood pressure! We have had to deal with DCF & CPS for the last year and I wouldn't wish them on anyone BUT that might be an option for you. Since your daughter lives with you she'll probably take him and put him in bad a situation again when she gets the chance to "live her life" as she seems to want to, as soon as she finds someone to put up with her crap! Since your grandchild has bonded with you and as long as your home is safe, chances are high that a judge will give you guardianship if you report her for abuse/neglect. If a judge removes him from her care she and the dad will have to go through a "case plan" to get him back. The case plan would require them to take parenting classes, be drug and alcohol free, employed and have a safe home. I AM NOT AN ATTORNEY, Just a granny that feels for you! If I were you, I'd use this website to study the laws concerning this matter in your state. There is tons of state specific info. I've had my granddaughter for a little more than a year now. The courts only permit a certain amount of time for parents to get their lives straight (usually 12-18 months) before their rights are terminated. After that the child is available for adoption. I hope to adopt my granddaughter soon. I hope that if you go this route, your daughter will do whats best for her child but if not, he's a lucky little boy to have a grandma like you to look out for him! Best of luck to you
  6. explorer13. Not that it's any of your business how I plan to pay for adoption fee's, My husband is gainfully employed by a railroad and has excellent benefits, including legal representation and, of course, an excellent salary. I am aware of the sad fact that I raised one of the "wayward" parents. He's 24 yrs. old and frankly, he's not rehab able! Nor is the child's mother. They've had 13 months to act like responsible parents and have not done so. I feel the need to defend my parenting skills to you, a perfect stranger, for some reason. I failed miserably with this particular "child" but I raised 2 others that are good, moral, law abiding, employee'd, wonderful parent's. I hope to do the same for this poor child. That is the reason I've used this forum to get information on this, and other topics, pertaining to our situation. I did not do so to be judged by the likes of you!
  7. I have had guardianship of my 2 yr. old granddaughter for a year. She was removed from her mom due to abuse. I haven't officially adopted her yet but I plan to do so as soon as DCF stops wasting time and resources trying to rehabilitate her parents. I am on disability and receive a small check each month for my 15 yr. old daughter. Can I get the same benefit for my granddaughter too? We live in Florida, if that matters. Thanks.
  8. I'm not an attorney, just a Grandmother in FL who, sadly, am involved with family court, CPS, DCF, etc. I'm also a mother, have been and have had stepparents and my children have a step dad. To you maf6974, I say BRAVO! Your husband is fortunate to have a woman that loves "his" child the way you do. To those who say she's "overstepping" SHAME ON YOU! It takes a village and sometimes the village idiots (people on this site and most professional Family court employees) like to throw around the term "in the child's best interest" with no thought to what that means! This poor child need all the motherly love and concern you provide. This is YOUR family you are fighting for and any prudent judge should consider your input into this case as you seem to be the one trying to look out for THE BEST INTEREST OF THE CHILD! Keep up your good work and this granny in FL will be praying for you and your family.
  9. Thanks Ted_from_Texas & Findlaw_JN. I agree with you both about hiring a Family Law Attorney and I have. I met with him once a while back while dealing with another fiasco concerning this case. I am just eager to find out as much info. on my own so I don't have to pay for advice I can get here. I do foresee using his services again in the future. Ted from Texas, I think you are correct about custody/guardianship issue. We are considered "Kinship caregivers" which is in the realm of the Foster Parent system. That just goes back to the original question about Custody, Perm. Guardian & adoption. It's more confusing than it needs to be. Seems like each agency involved have different uses/meanings for these words or uses them interchangeably. As I look back at my questions, I notice that I said I want DCF out of my life the I said I didn't want them to close the case and dump their responsibilities on me. That should tell you a little bit about the relationship I have with them! We have had 6 caseworkers in 12 months and so much has happened it's hard for me to keep it all straight. They all assure me they've read the file but I don't have much faith that our brand new caseworker, that we met one time ( a week before the 12 month review,) has an appreciation for how desperately we all need to protect this child. The case plan I received says overall Goal Compliance Expiration date 10/12/2014 Although Florida law permits case plans of up to 12 months, section 39.806, Florida statutes, permits termination of parental rights 9 months after the date a child is removed from the home or the date the case plan is accepted by the court, whichever is shorter. The case plan must be limited to as short a period as possible for accomplishing its provisions. FAILURE TO SUBSTANTIALLY COMPLY WITH THE CASE PLAN MAY RESULT IN THE TERMINATION OF PARENTAL RIGHTS SOONER THAN THE COMPLIANCE PERIOD SET FORTH IN THE CASE PLAN. This is the "PLAN" everyone has been following thus far. Now, the "PLAN" has changed! I had nothing to do with making it. DCF did. The parents agreed to it & I got a copy of it! I got reassurance from multiple agencies that this would not/could not be dragged out for more than 12-18 months. This is why I feel "baited & switched." I just want the people that make the rules to follow them! Most of all I want this precious child to have some chance of having a normal life with a chance of becoming a happy, productive adult some day. Which brings me to your snarky comment explorer13, Yes, I do realize that I failed miserably at teaching my son adult values and responsibilities. I've wondered a million times where I went wrong. I've asked myself many times if I'm the best person to raise this little girl given my past failure. I don't know the answers. I do know that I raised my looser son's older brother in the same home and he's doing very well in life (married, employed, responsible, legal, moral and a wonderful father) and my 15yr. old daughter who makes straight A's loves to go to church and is every parents dream of a perfect kid. I know that I love My granddaughter more than words can explain and will do everything in my power to give her the life she deserves. You asked if I'd prefer that my granddaughter now be placed in foster care with strangers? That question is too stupid to bother answering. I have to agree with your last statement, Dealing with DCF caseworkers can be frustrating. Thanks again everybody for your help. This has been enlightening and therapeutic for me!
  10. Platinum Contributor, Thank you for your kindness, wisdom, and time. It has always been my hope that these "grown ups" grow up and get their lives in order so either one of them could raise their child. As the months go by and I see the foolish, destructive way they live their lives, my hope diminishes. It confounds me to no end. What worries me about Permanent Guardianship is 1: it gives the parents a pass to drag this out indefinitely while the child gets older and more bonded and with us. To allow them to up-root her again is just unconscionable to me. The mother actually got a judge to approve a home study on a homeless shelter! Thank God the shelter has more sense than the judge, they wouldn't allow it! She also got approval for the child to visit her in jail! 2: I do not want to deal with DCF's foolishness for God knows how long! 3: I can't allow the drama and nonsense, that is a normal part of the parent's lives, to interfere with the calm, God loving, stable environment that my husband and I provide for our 15 yr. old daughter. I just can't be the referee to their "game." Thanks again for your response. You've given me a new way to look at this
  11. I've had guardianship of my 2 yr. old granddaughter for 12 month due to abuse by the mothers paramour. When this nightmare began I was assured by DCF that after 12 months of the case plan being followed (or not, in this case) If the parents (BOTH parents) did not significantly abide by the plan, IE get there lives in order enough to be responsible for their child, their parental rights would be terminated and the child would be available for adoption. So now it's 12 months later. Mother has refused to leave the abuser, has been arrested, spent a month in jail and recently tried to commit suicide, totaled her car, got her license suspended for 5 years, has no job and is homeless! Father (my son) is currently wanted by the police for theft and failure to appear, has no job, no driver license, no home of his own and is expecting another child with a married (to someone else) methadone addict with 2 kids that she lost custody of! DCF contacted me last week and asked me how I felt about Permanent Guardianship. It' seems to me the 12 months are up, they want/need to close the case and since they couldn't manage to hold the parent's feet to the fire they want to bail on me and dump their responsibilities in my lap. As much as I would love to see them get out of my life, if I agree to this, I will be the one to determine visitation etc. This is not what I signed up for! I really never expected the parents to get their "poop in a group" and I would adopt my grandbaby in a minute and tell the deadbeats to get lost! However, It seems that DCF has baited and switched on me. SO MY QUESTIONS ARE: can anyone explain the differences between Permanent Guardianship, Custody and adoption as they pertain to my unfortunate situation? Can I refuse Permanent Guardianship? Can I make DCF follow through with the plan that THEY came up with in the beginning (TPR/adoption?) What the heck is Permanent Guardianship mean anyway? until she's 18? Is this common? HELP! THANKS..
  12. Thank you DumplinHoneyChild. I kinda figured that was the advice I'd get. It's funny, the parent's, the Department, The Guardian Ad Litem all have "free" attorney's. I was told that the baby has one too but in the 12 months we've had her, I've not been contacted by anyone. That's our wonderful "system" for ya. Whoever coined the phrase "The System" in reference to DCF had it all wrong! It should be called "The Quagmire" Thanks again for your time
  13. I've had guardianship of my 2 year old granddaughter for 12 months.She was removed from her mother due to abuse by her moms paramour. We went to court Monday and while waiting to be called the mother told me some disturbing things involving her recent suicide attempt/DUI/car crash. She said she didn't want DCF (Florida) to find out about. Of course I mentioned this to the caseworker (the SIXTH one in 12 months) and she didn't seem very concerned and didn't mention it in court. Because it had to do with mental health issues, I think, it's confidential. The mother has been Baker Acted 2 or 3 times in the past and I suspect that is what happened after this incident. My Question: How can I get any info./ proof of this event? I'm sure it would put a stop to the reunification plans that she has everyone convinced is best. She is still with the child abusing paramour ( living in his home with his mother) although he is currently in jail for abusing her! By the way, The judge approved a home study on the mother's home (the one mentioned above) so mom can have unsupervised visits. DCF is a worthless nightmare and I know they could get this info. if they were so inclined but I can't get them to do anything. Our next court date is in 6 weeks and I really need to shine a light on the situation they want to put this poor little girl in.I used to think DCF was there to help kids, now I'm not sure what they do besides waste paper and taxes! Thanks for any ideas, help or prayers for an innocent baby girl in N. FL.
  14. I've had custody of my 2 year old Granddaughter for 12 months. She was removed from her mother (not my daughter) due to abuse caused by her paramour. We went to court Monday and while waiting to be called she told me some very disturbing things that, if known by the court, would probably ruin any chance of her being reunited. I informed the caseworker ( the SIXTH one in 12 months) and she doesn't seem to be concerned and didn't bring it up in court. Because it had to do with a men...

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