To make a report to social services?

(104 Posts)
HappyWasGoLucky Fri 28-Feb-14 00:02:09

Name changed, I'm a regular. Pom bears, naice ham, penis beaker.

This is long, I apologise!

A family member of mine has been interviewed under caution regarding an incident in which her child (2 years old) was hurt. Social Services turned up at her house several weeks ago and took her and her two boys to hospital (2 and 3) because of a severe mark on the two year olds face. She told the hospital staff and social services that he and his brother were fighting and he fell over and hurt his face on a toy bus, which they accepted.

Fast forward several weeks and she has rang SS and told them that she lied and she hit him round the head which caused him to fall on the toy bus. She had a child action meeting with SS and the police in which she admitted hitting her son.

Following this meeting the police rang her and told her to present herself at the police station for interview as they were going to charge her with assault on a minor. Following the interview, the police are going to make a decision on whether to charge her with assault on a minor and give her a caution or proceed to court.

She and her mother are now down-playing the incident and saying that she only gave a small tap on the top of his head with the palm of her hand and that SS are trying to stitch her up for something she didn't do.

The thing is, I know of and have witnessed previous instances in which these boys have been emotionally and physically neglected and have been hit.

I've witnessed her smack the elder child round the head because he wasn't leaving a room quick enough. I went round one afternoon and neither boys were dressed or washed, they both had nappies on that were dangling down to their knees and the elder child had quite obviously had a poo. I told her he had soiled his nappy and she said 'yeah, I need to change him' and then proceeded to sit down and talk to me for an hour about her boyfriend. When she did finally change him the poo was stuck to his bum so it had obviously been left for a while.

I've witnessed the children throw bricks around the back garden whilst she sits in the kitchen smoking and gossiping, absolutely no supervision whatsoever. On another day, this actually resulted in another child's head being split open by a brick and an ambulance was called. The ambulance man was so concerned at the state of her children that he called the police.

Her elder child has taken to wetting himself when someone shouts, it doesn't even have to be him getting told off.

So basically, the police and SS are focussing solely on this one incident with the bus and her smaller child, they know nothing of anything else.

I know that by reporting this I will be opening myself up to all sorts of abuse and I will probably be outcast from the family (bar my own immediate members). But I feel that by not reporting this that she will more than likely be let off with a caution and the children will continue to suffer. sad

AIBU?

HappyWasGoLucky Fri 28-Feb-14 08:59:23

The police have told her that if it goes to court then thr children will be removed from her care, however, they want her to admit that she hit him directly in the face which she won't do.
They can't prove her story about the bus isn't true so we think that they are just going to caution her.

If I make this report do you think they will be able to make a more informed decision and possibly not let her get away with a caution and free to go home with the kids?

WhamBamThankYouMam Fri 28-Feb-14 09:01:51

So you went to their house and the children's nappies weren't changed, one obviously having had a poo, and you sat there for an hour and chatted to her?! Really?! hmm

starfishmummy Fri 28-Feb-14 09:05:25

Thats what I thought too WhamBam.

Pobblewhohasnotoes Fri 28-Feb-14 09:56:40

The more information SS have OP the better, so yes they can make an informed decision. You can phone anonymously you know.

MammaTJ Fri 28-Feb-14 10:03:32

Why hadn't you done if before?

lazyhound444 Fri 28-Feb-14 10:10:20

I've only ever reported in a professional capacity, not personal. IME it can be a long, drawn out process. Thanks to shitty soap operas and crap TV dramas, some of the general public are under the impression that SS swoop in like a SWAT team after one negative report. The reality is very different as most local authorites try their best to keep the children with their natural parents for as long as they can before placing them in foster care.

Despite all that, it's imperative that you DO report it. As others have said, the more they know, the better and more informed a decision they can make.

AnnabelleLee Fri 28-Feb-14 10:10:46

She called them voluntarily out of the blue to admit to hitting the child, when the accident story had already been accepted?
IF this is true, she is clearly asking for help. Do something to help then, instead of colluding in the abuse (like pp said, you sat and chatted for an hour knowing the child was being neglected at the time? Why didn't you change the nappy yourself?)

IdRatherPlayHereWithAllTheMadM Fri 28-Feb-14 10:13:09

Yes I would in this case, I do not normally like to encourage people to snitch in this way but you seem to have seen lots of things with your own eyes and it sounds like a very sad situation.

KrevlornswathoftheDeathwokClan Fri 28-Feb-14 10:15:24

YANBU

ginmakesitallok Fri 28-Feb-14 10:24:05

Please please don't think of this as "snitching" - this isn't the playground. Imagine if you don't report. When those poor children grow up they will know that other people knew what was happening to them and they did nothing to help. Please report all you know.

katese11 Fri 28-Feb-14 10:28:07

Why didn't the police intervene earlier if they were called after the brick incident?

HadABadDay2014 Fri 28-Feb-14 10:31:08

I can't believe you sag there for an hour when this baby needed changing, I would of ask where the nappy and wiped was and Chang him myself.

Why haven't you reported it sooner.

jugofwildflowers Fri 28-Feb-14 10:32:51

I feel very sad that people do not report such things or act on instinct for fear for themselves. As if turning a blind eye will make uncomfortable things go away.

There are so many neglected and abused dc and when something awful happens people ask why didn't anybody do anything? The signs are usually always there.

Those poor poor dc. The one person who should be loving and caring is letting them down so badly and with a grandmother who would rather lie and aid and abet her own abusive daughter than seek help for her grandchildren.

Op, you have a good heart, you know what you've witnessed is wrong as does your sister. What sort of family members will these dc turn into without someone with a kind heart and strong conscience to help them?

They are still very young so the damage could be mitigated if you act now. Have you and your sister been too afraid to confront this awful grandmother or mother and tell her that the way she treats her dc is so wrong? The nappy incident for example, wouldn't you have said let me change him for you then we can have a cup of tea?

It sounds as if you are used to the neglect and bad parenting which has lessened your shock to the fact that it is utterly unacceptable and a disaster waiting to happen. The brick incident was already a warning light when another child got badly injured.

There seems to be successive warning bells going off and paralysis to do anything apart from you op.

Your conscience will not allow these dc to be further neglected and abused, thank god, but please do not delay in reporting it x

Pigsmummy Fri 28-Feb-14 10:38:50

You have to report, SS are involved and need to get an accurate picture of what is happening.

You have to ask why they turned up at the door in the first place, I suspect someone alerted them and now SS need to get help from you, yor sister etc to get a clearer picture of what's happening. They will try to support the mother rather than rush in and take children away.

HappyWasGoLucky Fri 28-Feb-14 11:02:55

To the posters asking why I just sat there and didn't say anything about the child's nappy - I did say something. Twice.

Plus I had my 6 week old DS with me. I should have changed the nappy myself and I didn't. I know that was wrong of me. But thanks for making me feel worse than I already do.

I'm going to report this morning once my DS has gone down for a nap.

lazyhound444 Fri 28-Feb-14 11:04:48

I completely understand why you didn't change the nappy OP, you're in a very awkward situation. Unfortunately some people come on AIBU to pick holes and criticise.

TheVermiciousKnid Fri 28-Feb-14 11:06:06

Well done for deciding to report, HappyWasGoLucky. It's hard, but the right thing to do.

HappyWasGoLucky Fri 28-Feb-14 11:10:55

Thank you lazyhound.

This family member is the same age as me and has been diagnosed with boderline personality disorder and has other mental health issues, so we are led to believe.

She has already said to my sister that she needs a night out this weekend so she 'have a break from it all'. I just don't think her heart is in the right place. She sees her children as more of a burden on her life, I think.

HappyWasGoLucky Fri 28-Feb-14 11:13:32

Their dad is not around. He left over a year ago and she got together and moved in with a man who she said was violent towards her.

I don't know if that is the case. She tends to embellish stories and make them completely different to what actually happened.

puds11isNAUGHTYnotNAICE Fri 28-Feb-14 11:31:03

OP you are doing the right thing and I think it is very brave of you to do so.

Please don't listen to those trying to make you feel bad. No one can say how they would react in a situation unless they have been in it.

HappyWasGoLucky Fri 28-Feb-14 11:41:09

I'm about to make the call.

WTF do I say? I've got no clue what I'm doing.

And yes, I'm worrying about the effect this is going to have on me. That makes mr selfish, I know. sad

But, above my own preference to avoid drama, I need to know that SS know the full picture, or at least as much of it as I can give.

HappyWasGoLucky Fri 28-Feb-14 11:41:26

Thanks Puds.

puds11isNAUGHTYnotNAICE Fri 28-Feb-14 11:45:41

smile

You are not selfish, you are scared. Be brave. Those who you really need will still be there after the call has been made (plus MN will always be here smile)

Tell them the truth. Tell them what you have told us.

Good luck smile

MrTumblesSpottyHag Fri 28-Feb-14 11:51:49

I don't know if you've already are the call but ime they talk you through everything over the phone. The hardest part was making the call, then it was just a case of answering their questions.
You're doing a brave thing OP.

lazyhound444 Fri 28-Feb-14 11:53:42

As Mr Tumbles has said, they will talk you through it all.

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