Letter from social services; help!

(137 Posts)
Seb101 Thu 13-Mar-14 15:36:15

Today I have received a letter from social services referral and assessment department. It says my child has been referred to them! I can't speak to anyone until tomorrow, and I'm going out of my mind with worry! We are a normal, two parent, loving family. We adore our little girl. I can't think what it could be about. I phoned a general help desk and they couldn't help. The person I need to speak to isn't around today! But they said someone has referred our child, and this would be because of a concern over her safety and well being. It could be a doctor/ health visitor or a member of the public. We've had no accidents, doctors or health visitor contact; so unlikely to be them. I'm so scared of what might happen....
Can anyone offer any advice? Could this be something routine? Has this happened to anyone? My dd is well cared for, bright, healthy. I've never smacked her, or screamed and shouted at her. I'm a good mum, and she's my whole world. If anyone has experienced this type of situation; please help! I will ring them tomorrow, but in the mean time, I'm very worried!

TheScience Thu 13-Mar-14 15:38:32

Is there someone who might want to make trouble for you?

lonnika Thu 13-Mar-14 15:38:47

Right first of all take some deep deep breaths and calm down.
There could be a variety of reasons they have been called. If all is well they will come and assess and that will be it -

NigellasDealer Thu 13-Mar-14 15:44:43

have you fallen out with a neighbour?
now listen, please try not to worry about this too much, if there was an urgent concern, you would have had a surprise visit.
phone first thing tomorrow and they will arrange a visit and i am sure everything will be OK. how old is your child? does she go to nursery or school?

Technical Thu 13-Mar-14 15:53:58

They have received a report and are duty bound to investigate. Once they have done this, if things are as you say, they will see that there is no issue.

The most likely scenario is that someone has done it to be (very) mean. Any ideas? Or it's mistaken identity, someone has got your child muddled with someone else

Seb101 Thu 13-Mar-14 16:34:14

Can't think of anyone who would do this. Not fallen out with anyone. Really good friends with neighbours.
Dd is just 2, doesn't go to nursery. Is at home with me full time.
Strangely they had the wrong address; a few doors down. But it was addressed to me; postman recognised my name. So they wouldn't have been able to do a surprise visit.
I will try to calm down, your right. We've done nothing wrong, so it'll be ok. It's just all those horrible stories of social workers digging for problems, using what you say against you, twisting stuff etc. prob not true, but the worry is there none the less.
It also worries me that someone out there is being malicious or has something against us.

eurochick Thu 13-Mar-14 16:38:21

Is there a child at the other address? It could be a case of misaddressed post.

exexpat Thu 13-Mar-14 16:43:09

You say you have had no doctor or health visitor contact - does that mean she has not been seen by a doctor or health visitor at the times they would expect (baby checks, immunisations according to the schedule etc), or not for a very long time? I think that can be seen as a red flag in some cases.

NotCitrus Thu 13-Mar-14 17:10:40

Two year checkup that they didn't have other way to organise?

Could well be nothing - ss called us up after I missed two appts for dd's jabs (good reasons for one, total cockup the other), they wanted to check I was ok, we cofirmed I was managing, dd has now been jabbed, ss gone away.

givemeaclue Thu 13-Mar-14 17:14:01

The wrong address suggests that is not in fact for you

Forago Thu 13-Mar-14 17:20:59

when I took my son for his 3y checkup they said oh glad you're here we were just about to issue an alert because he had disappeared! I said pardon? they said we lost all contact with him when he was 18m. Yes I said, that's when we moved house to our current address and registered with a new GP who he has seen multiple times for a chronic condition.

Apparently they records from the old GP weren't transferred properly and because he didn't have the MMR due to his medical issue they had lost track of him (MMR seems to be the main way they track) - even though they sent the invitation to come to the 3y check to the correct address ........

Maybe something like that has happened to you?

The different address but same name doesn't suggest it is not for her, I think it suggests this is malicious by someone not in authority (a member of the public) who guessed your house number, or thought they had it correct.

I'm sure all will be fine and they will see that when they see you and DD. Try to relax and good luck thanks

WestieMamma Thu 13-Mar-14 17:36:35

I've been in this situation. It's something I wouldn't wish on anyone. I knew I had no reason to worry but I still came close to a breakdown over it. I've still not felt able to tell anyone in real life sad .

In my case it was another social worker in adult services who reported me as she thought my disability meant I was incapable of looking after my son. She'd only met me briefly once and never met DS. At best she was dangerous ignorant of my condition. At worst she did it maliciously a week after The Court of Appeal ruled in my favour against Adult Social Services.

The SW from children's services was really embarassed, apologetic and closed the file.

MiaowTheCat Thu 13-Mar-14 19:03:46

It's horrid, it's terrifying and people who've not been through it don't "get" quite how nasty it feels (I've tried to get through to my just-qualified as a social worker brother how it feels so he understands for his clients but he doesn't really want to know).

In my case it was slightly unusual (not bloody unusual enough though!) that I'd wibbled about something they wanted to do in DD1's birth (basically they wanted to do a spinal and I just wanted them to note and stick to my pain free gap so my SPD didn't get made permanent and worse) and they referred me as a "resistant patient". Had a "just need to have a little chat with you" (god I hate that phrase - it's NEVER used for little chats) with two members of hospital staff who were filing the report, phonecall with the SW who'd talked about me with my midwife and my health visitor I'd never even met (yeah that part was useful) and then a few days of thumb twiddling before they sent me an error ridden letter saying the case was closed (they'd made copy-paste errors and got names wrong all over the shop) but that we'd always remain on file as "known to social services."

As someone else mentioned - it can really do a number on your mental health going through it - something that's often dismissed on here so take care of yourself with it all, don't blame yourself and I'd be querying who the letter was actually meant for with the wrong address - like I say - in the written correspondence I had there were errors all over the place with names in the wrong spaces and similar (so it read with strange things like - "we have spoken to your health visitor and would encourage you to build a strong and productive relationship with Miaowthecat")

Seb101 Thu 13-Mar-14 20:34:15

Westiemamma; Gosh your situation sounds horrid. It's stories like that that scare me..... I'm worried they will have already decided there is a problem before they even see me. I'm so glad they closed the case for you. It really is so heartbreaking when you love and do your absolute best for your child, but someone questions your parenting. I'm jumping the gun obviously; as don't even know what the issue is yet. But my kind is going in overdrive; imagining all sorts of terrible scenarios! Can't wait to actually speak to someone tomorrow, although incredibly nervous I'll give the wrong answers! sad(

Seb101 Thu 13-Mar-14 20:38:52

Miaowthecat; I can't quite believe you will be documented as 'known to social worker' because of that. It seems absurd! Thanks for sharing your story though. Your right, until that letter lands on your door, you don't understand the panic it creates. I'm even questioning myself ' was there a time I shouted/ did something wrong??! Could someone have reported that. Don't think I'll
Be getting much sleep tonight...sad(

Seb101 Thu 13-Mar-14 20:42:58

I've just had a thought: my husband and if are struggling with conceiving our second child and have been diagnosed with infertility issues. I've been at the doctors a lot recently for one test or another. I've often taken my dd. I have on occasion shed a tear/ got upset at these appointments when given bad news. Nothing major; but some tears! Could it be the doctor has seen this as a emotional problem and contacted social
Services. Seems a bit far fetched to me, but I'm trying to think of something/ anything that could have caused concern.

NigellasDealer Thu 13-Mar-14 20:44:21

that is possible seb - one word of advice if you have to see a social worker, show zero emotion, they will use it against you.

Viviennemary Thu 13-Mar-14 20:46:21

It sounds like a mix up to me. Wrong address but right name. It sounds very strange indeed. Hope it's a mistake. I don't think it's likely the doctor has said anything.

Seb101 Thu 13-Mar-14 20:46:53

Nigella; advice taken; thank you ;))

milkysmum Thu 13-Mar-14 20:47:08

gosh that's awful that you just received a letter and then have not been able to speak to anyone! hopefully some light will be shed on situation tomorow

WestieMamma Thu 13-Mar-14 20:47:08

If it's any consolation, a mum at my baby group went through similar. In her case a friend of a friend reported her because she 'liked' a Facebook page campaigning for the legalisation of cannabis. Again the case was closed once SS had spoken to her and saw she was just a normal mum.

Seb101 Thu 13-Mar-14 20:54:07

Viveannemary ; I do hope it's all a mix up. Myself and dh have been through so much trying to concieve a second child. It's been incredibly hard. My dd is everything to me and we so desperately want a sibling for her. I can't tell you how much I love her. This stress is really the last thing we need. sad

Seb101 Thu 13-Mar-14 20:59:24

Westiemamma; omg; someone actually called ss over that. That's madness. But thank you for sharing; I'm hoping this is some sort of silly mistake.
I spoke to someone ( who knew nothing of my case) who said ' issues are only passed on to assessment and referral if they believe a child is being harmed or in danger of being harmed! ' I was seriously shaking after that phone call. His tone was so
Serious. It sounded so serious! sad(

WestieMamma Thu 13-Mar-14 20:59:24

Be kind to yourself, take it easy and rest as you'll most likely get little sleep until it's resolved. And have a good cry when nobody is looking.

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