Notice: Forums will be shutdown by June 2019

To focus on better serving our members, we've decided to shut down the POF forums.

While regular posting is now disabled, you can continue to view all threads until the end of June 2019. Event Hosts can still create and promote events while we work on a new and improved event creation service for you.

Thank you!

Plentyoffish dating forums are a place to meet singles and get dating advice or share dating experiences etc. Hopefully you will all have fun meeting singles and try out this online dating thing... Remember that we are the largest free online dating service, so you will never have to pay a dime to meet your soulmate.
     
Show ALL Forums  > Single Parents  > a question for all single parents      Home login  
 AUTHOR
 goodoleboy72
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 12
view profile
History
a question for all single parentsPage 4 of 6    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
Just got a call from her caseworker...I'm going to meet her next tuesday(her earliest opening)

I'll let Y'all know how it goes.
 a8u1t7m0
Joined: 2/4/2009
Msg: 13
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/10/2009 8:39:08 AM
If it were me, I would call DCF and explain that, due to the investigation, you have concerns that your daughter is not in a safe, loving environment. Ask if there is any way that you can AT LEAST get temporary/emergency custody of your daughter until the case with DCF is resolved. Tell them that you want to pursue custody of her. Even if they can't directly help you, they can probably give you some pretty good advice as to who to contact and what your options are. Lawyer fees can be expensive, but a lot of the filing you can do yourself.

Don't be afraid to pursue full-custody, if you think the other parent is not a fit parent. Just because there is full-custody, doesn't mean that there isn't visitation. Don't be afraid to request supervised visitations, if you find it necessary. It will be up to the courts, not you.

The best of luck to you!
 pdiddy73
Joined: 2/4/2009
Msg: 14
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/10/2009 10:20:49 AM
I think your main concern right now is your child, ultimatly you know your ex better then anyone. Your focus should be in the best interest of your child, if your child requires full custody, you change your schedule, if joint custody is in order then so be it. I myself have joint custody, while I do not approve of every move my ex makes, I believe our child is in good care while she is with her (mother). You are absolutly right in the fact who she dates is your business as he will be around your child...I think it is even a good idea to do a backround check...

Good luck, I hope everything works out for you.
 goodoleboy72
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 15
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/10/2009 11:01:22 AM
I don't think I'm alone in thinking that who my ex sees IS my business...I'm not a lawyer but .............. according to the state of VA, you WILL lose custody of your child if you have overnight visits or have someone visit overnight while your child is with you (granted such activity has to be proven). I'm not making this up folks. I know someone who went through it. I think more states should have laws like that!!!

To all those who think I'm just posting this stuff hoping for sympathy and attention...look at the posts I've put up since the OP.

1) I've downloaded the forms necessary to file for custody

2) I've arranged a meeting with my daughters case worker

3) I've called lawyers that deal with family law and scheduled appointments
 dion6
Joined: 5/26/2008
Msg: 16
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/10/2009 8:45:58 PM
I understand what you mean, but you should go for join custody and be more vigilent. How old is your daughter ? maybe if she's old enough to talk, you could question her about her activities with her mum and step father.
 goodoleboy72
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 17
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/11/2009 7:42:45 AM
thanks Valmont
 goodoleboy72
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 18
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/11/2009 6:34:47 PM
thx Itsall



As for you world class A$$ ..... try reading the entire thread before you put your 2 cents in. WTF
 goodoleboy72
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 19
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/11/2009 6:38:24 PM
I'm not second guessing weather or not I can raise my daughter properly....I know I can!

My question was actualy about my feelings of guilt due to taking my daughter from her mother.

WTF Am I the only one that reads a thread all the way through before I make a post????
 FastReb
Joined: 1/3/2009
Msg: 20
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/11/2009 8:16:54 PM
I will give you my perspective from my work in law enforcement. First, each state's laws concerning family law can be vastly different from even the state bordering yours, much less half a continent away. Your first step should always be to consult a lawyer in your state, preferably one that specializes in family law (which usually includes divorce, child custody, etc.). I can tell you that in my state, the law is very cut and dry. It reads that if a man and woman aren't married when the child is born, the mother has complete and full custody. It's automatic at birth and I have had to make many men turn their children back over to the mother on numerous occasions when they had no court order giving them any visitation or parental rights. As a matter of fact, in my state, the only "right" a man has regarding the child he fathered while he wasn't wed to the mother is actually a duty, in the form of child support. He has no other rights until he goes into court and the court grants them to him.

Again, depending on the laws of your state, if you can get into court and get some parental rights, you may have a shot at getting DCF to give you custody, if they do take the child from the mother. Otherwise, if your state is like mine, they will probably try to put the child into the custody of one of the mother's relatives (her mother, sister, etc.) before they'd give you a shot, if they even legally could give you a shot without you having some type of court recognized parental rights.
 goodoleboy72
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 21
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/11/2009 8:43:03 PM
Thank you footballmom. And thanks to every one who posted after reading the entire thread. I will procede to try and get custody of my lil one. I've gotten over my guilt and know that if I am awarded full custody, its for a reason. I'm ready for whatever the Judge may say.

I'll keep y'all posted if you really want to know how it turns out!

As I said before, all I really want is what's best for my lil one.
 goodoleboy72
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 22
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/12/2009 12:42:59 PM
OMG you couldn't be further from the truth.

My guilt (which I have gotten over) came fromthe thought of possibly leaving my lil one without a mother. I believe its best for a child to have both parents in their life.

I have no doubt about a mans ability to parent as well as a woman.
 FastReb
Joined: 1/3/2009
Msg: 23
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/12/2009 7:53:21 PM

Goodoleboy, I hear you about people not reading things though. Considering I just went through a custody battle in Massachusetts, you can trust my advice.


footballmom, I'm not sure why you'd high-light my comment other than you somehow thought I was directing this comment to you. I wasn't. I was simply trying to convey to the OP that since each states law can be vastly different from even a bordering state, he should check with someone who has continuous contact with his state's law, which is usually a lawyer working in this area.

I am glad that things worked out for you, both in court and with not having to use a lawyer. Hiring a lawyer can be a very expensive proposition, as everyone already knows. However, even if your efforts were recent, some states have laws that go into effect at different times of the year. Here in my state, most new laws go into effect on July 1. I have no idea if most laws go into effect on a certain date in Massachusetts or if each law goes into effect individually. A lawyer would know if any new laws had been added or old laws amended, resulting in my suggestion to OP.

I hope this clarifies any misunderstanding there may have been.
 goodoleboy72
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 24
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/12/2009 8:49:23 PM
Ok here goes........

Thank you very much FOOTBALLMOM and VALMONT!

This has been a very hard decision for me to make.

With that said to all those that had something negative to say or questioned my integrity or my judement or just had the sticky side up that particular day.....

.....STFU.......


Its a forum, freedom of speach, you got yours good for you.

I was aksing for advice, and as in real life I found out that when I ask for advice I must take the good with the bad, but above all I must consider the source.


I've made my decision on how to procede with MY particular case (everyone has different circumstances!!!)




I'm closing this thread now because my question has been answered!
 barbee1970
Joined: 12/29/2008
Msg: 25
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/12/2009 11:20:01 PM
I say go for it. Fathers do have just as much right as mothers do these days. The courts are more concerned about the best interest of the child.
 packagedealx3
Joined: 2/4/2006
Msg: 26
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/15/2009 8:28:24 AM
Indigo, first of all, the child is 20 months old, not quite capable of verbalizing in detail to dad how she feels about things.


go for joint custudy, you cannot take your daughter away from her mother, a child needs both parents, believe me i learned that the hard way with my son, it totally messed with his head having no dad around.

Going for joint custody when a child is living in an unfit environment is stupid. If he is able to gain full custody of his daughter, the courts will determine whether visitation must be supervised, etc. Gaining custody is not taking the child away from the mother because the child will continue to see mom unless the state deems her a totally unfit parent and nixes her parental rights.

Many men I think with younger children feel like they are taking the child away from his/her mother if they go for full custody and it is really quite normal and healthy to feel some guilt from this because it facilitates the dad taking the time to consider whether he is really trying to take the child away from mom or do what he thinks is right for the child.

The OP stated that he did not pursue custody because he was astute enough to realize that her abilities as a partner were not synonymous with her ability to parent. Finding out that her abilities as a parent are in question, the OP then moves to further figure out if full custody is again, not tied up in emotion beyond protecting his daughter from real harm.

Sometimes coparenting is not possible and in others such as this if the OP finds really serious issues are brought up in the meeting with the case worker, is really not an option if YOU are doing your job as a parent.

My X is verbally and emotionally abusive. Now that I am not his favorite target, the kids get it. I have had a difficult time over the last four years determining whether the kids should continue to see their dad when he is fairly consistently mean and hateful or for them to not see their dad at all. My kids are older, we talk about it, they know they can tell me at any time they don't want to see their dad and I will respect their wishes. So far they have chosen to continue to try to deal with someone they love but often wish would just go away, or stfu.

It takes a lot of stones for a kid to close the door on someone that is supposed to love them well and unconditionally even when they fall far short of those standards. My boys don't seem to think about it that much. My daughter wants to do the "right thing," and we talk about her doing what is right for her in addition to what she thinks is right for her dad.

A 20 month old even more so than an older child, is at the mercy of the adults that surround her.
 goodoleboy72
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 27
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/15/2009 1:45:49 PM
OK OK...........

Inicia....my lil one is safe, I just dropped her off. I had to change my appt. with DCF from Tues. to Thurs. I've downloaded and filled out the forms that Football mom gave me links to (THX!!!). I'll be dropping them off the next time I go into the city (I'm workin 2 hrs away from the city this week). I've called lawyers and can't find one to work pro bono (I can't afford one) so I'm gonna hafta go it alone.

Do I think my ex is the worlds worst mom NO
Am I going for full custody YES
Do I think I'll get it PROBABLY NOT

I'm going to trust in the judge's wisdom and decision as to what is best for my lil one.
 Rythmn
Joined: 1/21/2006
Msg: 28
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/15/2009 2:24:32 PM
i 'll say this as a fost/adopt mom who tried to involve birth mama with her children, although mine were much older:

child services determines if she is a suitable parent. the next step is to find the nearest relative who is able to care for the child or s/he is put in foster care. sometimes, if it's borderline, they'll just wait for it to get worse--UNLESS they find a willing birth father or relative to pitch in immediately and help out. that is a practical decision, as there are not enough good foster parents! once the parental or guardianship custody is established--which may or may not mean her rights are temporarily or permanently interrupted-- they usually offer supervised visits to the offending parent.

often a neglected child fares worse than an abused one in the after years. babies are often just left laying in cribs in their own urine or toddlers on the floor with no supervision or interaction. interaction is what feeds the brain and determines "mood" later on in life. thus, the early years are important to the health, security and brain function/development of your child.

so, why are you worrying about offending the child's mother? work with child services in protecting the baby. then take it from there, with their involvement. many birth moms make it. many don't. often the courts do nothing, while a child is put in harms way. here, you have a chance, with DCF already being on the scene. the mother could always visit. custody and parental rights and who makes the decisions are all seperate issues. you could have full custody and agree to certain visitation patterns.
 daddypickle
Joined: 1/31/2009
Msg: 29
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/15/2009 3:45:02 PM
good luck, dont naturally think u wont get full custody.... i didnt think id have full custody either. you never know what will happen
 goodoleboy72
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 30
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/15/2009 4:41:39 PM
THX Daddy......


.......on a lighter note , nice stripper man!!!!!!!
 packagedealx3
Joined: 2/4/2006
Msg: 31
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/16/2009 8:05:23 AM
OP, don't worry about the lawyer at this time. I don't know if the links you were given included the custody and child support statutes for your state, if it didn't, those should be available online and one of the best things you can do for yourself whether you lawyer up or not is gain as much knowledge as possible. There are a lot of bad lawyers out there and you need to know enough to recognize when they are giving you bad advice and in order to make sure they speak up about things in court which I have personal experience with, they won't unless you make them.

As far as the attorney, we sought custody of my 30-year-old stepson when he was 16. I filed the paperwork and did all of the legwork and we hired an attorney merely to represent us in court because of the way that courts usually work when custody is in question, i.e. the question and answer thing. Saved a ton of money and realistically, we didn't need a lawyer before then anyway. Because of the cps involvement, you will probably have some preliminary hearings, etc. and it will be a while before you really need a lawyer. Try to put whatever you can away so when you need one you will be able to hire one. You have gotten a lot of great advice regarding documenting EVERYTHING and make sure you have that in court.

Another tip is creating a synopsis of things, if you have documents, create something in microsoft word that has just the date and a brief description of what happened and can refer yourself to a more detailed description of the incident. This includes when you split, how much support you have been paying, etc. When we were in court with my stepson, neither my X nor his X-wife were able to testify clearly relative to exactly when they split, etc., it was pretty pathetic watching them bumbling around on the witness stand. When I have testified, I write up the points I want to make sure to get across which is something you might want to do as well. You wouldn't be allowed to read it but you can keep an outline in front of you to try to answer the questions the way you want.

When you do get to the point of going to court, if she is without means and because of cps, they will appoint an attorney for her. Don't let the attorney bully you, think about your answers, take a moment to refer to your notes and specifically state that you don't want to mis-speak so you want to check the date or whatever. Do not ever let a lawyer hurry you into an answer that can be twisted around to mean something else.

You poor thing, at this point you have gotten so much advice your head is probably spinning. I suggest that you print this thread and organize all of the things we have suggested in addition to what you have already done, it will be a great reference as you move through this process.

Also, the post by Serenity, you should read again. My stepson is a mess as a father. His wife is worse than slime IMO. He has 7 kids (they now live 150 miles from us) and we took three home for the week to give the other grandma a break and to allow his dad to spend some time with the kids as well as my kids and I also spending time with them. It was a heartbreaking experience for not only me but my kids as well. Mine were 9, 13 and 16 when the kids were here. The three we brought home were 5, 7 and 9. Because they had been so neglected while he was working and staying home with mom, they were several years developmentally delayed. There is a disconnect with them, having not formed attachments properly, that was evident even to my children.

Beyond that, children need to be taught certain things in order to take care of themselves. If I left my 9-year-old with food he could easily fend for himself for a week (and no, I wouldn't leave anyone but my oldest alone even for the weekend, lol). These kids would be sitting on the couch waiting for someone to feed them when you returned. Your presence in your child's life will probably make the difference in your child not turning into what can be best described as shells. These kids didn't even know how to bathe properly. I work at home and was working most of the week they were here so my daughter did a lot of the care with the kids and had put them in the tub while she and I were getting dinner, so it was the last night they were here, when my youngest had returned from out of town with a friend, that someone actually "supervised" the baths and discovered that they had never been taught how to use soap. My 9-year-old was teaching another 9-year-old how to soap up his arms and that he needed to lift his leg out of the water to soap it, sigh.

Do not minimize the damage that neglect can do.
 Rythmn
Joined: 1/21/2006
Msg: 32
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/16/2009 10:19:38 AM
here in CA, men have equal rights. i do know that it varies by county politics and the judges, but often the biases work in reverse (against the women). it justs depends on what fruitloop you get stuck with. i would also research the judge's actions regarding prior cases beforehand, to know who you are up against. sometimes the attorneys know how to get the right judge.

i would think in OP's case, that his state would be more liberal than some others. if in a state that has not yet caught up, i would suggest contacting one of the many father's rights support groups. they are not only in the usa, but i personally came across them in scotland when fighting for my ex's rights to his first round of "birth" children. even there, in a more conservative rural area, he got the attention. but, he also blew it. in retrospect, i was probably the driving force, as i believed his side of the story and worried about the "poor" children. sadly, i didn't know about him then, what i do now. however, it could have been the reverse.

so, rights are rights and legal process is legal process. forget the emotional aspect, if you want to succeed. if you have to fight hard, get ready to keep a bound diary (about what transpires with the baby and the other) and document every day what you come up against and your own actions on the part of the baby. they say to get a bound one so you cannnot cheat and add pages. see if you can also get people who can vouch for how you provide personal care for the baby. for some reason that also helps a lot in court. our foster/adopt advocacy group taught us that.

most people just give up. it can consume you. i did it for my ex's british kids and i did it for my adopted kids, although i did have a relationship with the birth mom, who in the end rooted for me (ours was a very unique case).

looking back, not sure how i did it and would never have the energy to do it again. but, if it was my infant and i was young again without my current history, i wouldn't think twice. parents are supposed to care for their kids. when they are conceived, nobody is thinking if they both will make good parents. people have licenses to drive a car and own a dog, but not to be a parent!

it is definitely a journey and you get to learn about the supposed "law". you also get to learn about yourself. i now believe most institutions that are in place in society, are more about providing local jobs, than they are about protecting rights. all i can say is know thine enemies, including each and every player in the decision making process! always appear to be civil towards here, so it's about the baby and not the two of you. that does not mean, feeling sorry for her. just be civil.
 packagedealx3
Joined: 2/4/2006
Msg: 33
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/20/2009 10:02:18 AM
OP, did you have the meeting with the caseworker yesterday?
 goodoleboy72
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 34
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/20/2009 2:18:08 PM
First off I'd like to thank footballmom, packagedeal and valmont. Your advice and support more than I ever expected. If I could return the favor I most assuredly would.


I never thought when I started this thread that it would go so far.

Hillmom I feel very sorry for you. You weren't ranting, everyone needs to vent and if a Single Parent's Thread on POF is your outlet then you're more than welcome to hijack this thread!!!

Once again to everyone else who posts PLEASE....START FROM PAGE ONE AND READ ALL THE WAY THROUGH....I know it's a lot of reading (5 pgs.) but one of the latest posters said I should question my daughter about whats going on in the home...To which I'm sure she would respond "DADA...MAMA...WASSAT....UTTOH"
....after all she's not even 2 yet.





So .... I met with DCF thurs morn., all went well mostly questions about my past and living conditions. What I did find out was that my lil one has been enrolled in the REACH program (They deal with early childhood development). So now I need to contact them and find out what they recommend. I also realised that I need to work on opening up communication with my ex....this may be difficult...but I gotta do what I gotta do.



Footballmom..........

THX so much for the links .... I used them.....but I've found out that I need a few more forms and a copy of the lil one's BC, so I'll be hitting city hall and the court house this week...while I'm there I'll definitely look into the Pro Bono Attys.......I can't thank you enough for the advice!

I know I said I wasn't going to post again....but after reading everything and seeing that this thread may have helped someone else, I've decided to keep posting whenever I have more news....These things take a while so be patient!
 flcntrygirl80
Joined: 4/22/2008
Msg: 35
view profile
History
a question for all single parents
Posted: 2/22/2009 8:26:26 AM
As a single mom, if the situation was reversed for me and my child's father was being investigated by DCF, I would be in the middle of it and petitioning to get custody of my child. I hope you kept proof of cs payments, or you won't get credit for them if she takes you to court about it. My advice, go down to the court house in their county if they live in a different one) and file the petition for custody and child support immediately. It is pretty simple to do it yourself, no real need for a lawyer.

Good luck.
Show ALL Forums  > Single Parents  > a question for all single parents