My kids were taken away from me by SS for 5 years - AMA

(206 Posts)
InABetterPlaceNow Wed 22-Sep-21 19:08:14

I might regret this! NC for obvious reasons.

Just thought it might be helpful for those worried, those going through it, etc.

OP’s posts: |
Potteringshed Wed 22-Sep-21 19:08:49

Why were they taken away?

Lookwhoseinsideagain Wed 22-Sep-21 19:09:37

Do you think it was the right choice?

FionnulaTheCooler Wed 22-Sep-21 19:09:38

How old are your kids now and is your relationship with them good? We're they in one placement for the time you didn't have them, or were they moved around a lot?

greyspottedgoose Wed 22-Sep-21 19:09:46

Your title implies you got them back, how did you do that?

notHarris Wed 22-Sep-21 19:12:44

Have you been able to move on from that as a family? How do your kids feel about it now?
(As pp said title implies you got them back, is that the case?)

InABetterPlaceNow Wed 22-Sep-21 19:13:37

Potteringshed

Why were they taken away?


My ex was very, very abusive. I was minimising it and everything I did was filtered through "how will he react / think about this". I thought he was only hurting me (I was wrong). I was in fire fight mode and it was the only way I knew how to live due to my upbringing. So I wasn't capable of seeing the bigger picture, and though I thought I was protecting my kids (by "managing him"), I wasn't.

OP’s posts: |

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InABetterPlaceNow Wed 22-Sep-21 19:15:40

Lookwhoseinsideagain

Do you think it was the right choice?


I didn't at the time.

I do now. I am so, so very grateful to the social worker that got involved 3 years in. She believed in me, supported me, and my kids and I owe our reunion to her.

We have a "goodbye" meeting next week, and I think I might cry.

OP’s posts: |
DGFB Wed 22-Sep-21 19:17:24

That is so wonderful that you think so highly of your social worker! And we’ll done on turning your life around

bloodywhitecat Wed 22-Sep-21 19:18:06

Who did they live with while they were not with you?

InABetterPlaceNow Wed 22-Sep-21 19:19:47

FionnulaTheCooler

How old are your kids now and is your relationship with them good? We're they in one placement for the time you didn't have them, or were they moved around a lot?


They were with family. Who actually are no longer able to have them unsupervised as things came up (thankfully after they returned 2 years ago). SS don't always get it right, and I raised concerns at the time, but due to ages at the time they might have been adopted and was advised to drop it by my solicitor. And was still better than where they were before.

Without being too outing, one is nearly an adult, the other two tweens. Very, very good relationship between us. They know how hard I fought for them and that they are my everything. They also no longer have any contact with their dad so I'm the sole parent.

OP’s posts: |
LastGirlSanding Wed 22-Sep-21 19:20:01

How did you take the first steps to recover after your children were removed?

InABetterPlaceNow Wed 22-Sep-21 19:26:19

greyspottedgoose

Your title implies you got them back, how did you do that?


I stopped fighting / not picking SS. At first I picked on everything they got "wrong" but they needed to build a picture for a solid case as the main reason (ex) was more than enough reason to remove them. I just had to suck some things up and tell myself those things were easy wins as they weren't true, and they would see it as they worked with me.

I took every parenting / domestic violence course I could find. I gave up work to do those and have as much contact as possible. I then changed career and threw myself into work so I could earn enough to move closer to where they now were (changing contact to less frequent but longer overnights). I got a non mol against my ex and went overboard on reporting ANYTHING to both SS and the police.

A big part was the social worker who was allocated mid way through. I do feel that's a real factor, and I'm very grateful. It took a good year to do a phased assessment, more overnights, testing me balancing work with the kids etc. But we got there!

OP’s posts: |
InABetterPlaceNow Wed 22-Sep-21 19:32:01

notHarris

Have you been able to move on from that as a family? How do your kids feel about it now?
(As pp said title implies you got them back, is that the case?)


I think we're all just so relieved. My youngest still phrased any "good days" as "this is the second best day of my life!" - the first being coming back home. She can still be really clingy, but it's getting better over time.

Honestly, with any parenting challenges that come up (and there have been lots!) it's always in the back of my mind that I could be without them. So I think it makes me a better parent.

OP’s posts: |
InABetterPlaceNow Wed 22-Sep-21 19:32:39

DGFB

That is so wonderful that you think so highly of your social worker! And we’ll done on turning your life around


Thank you!! She is honestly one of the most beautiful people I've had the pleasure of meeting.

OP’s posts: |
InABetterPlaceNow Wed 22-Sep-21 19:33:43

bloodywhitecat

Who did they live with while they were not with you?


Family, though not direct to me - I'm grateful to them in many ways, but keep them at arms length (see above!)

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InABetterPlaceNow Wed 22-Sep-21 19:36:56

LastGirlSanding

How did you take the first steps to recover after your children were removed?


I worked closely with women's aid, and got intensive counselling through a service for sexual abuse survivors. Pattern Changing was amazing (through woman's aid) as was my support worker and lawyer. I listened and took the action that they said. I still lost the initial case, but I held onto hope and worked my butt off to be able to take it back to court. It was in my mind every moment of every day. As it turned out, the LA saw the change and took it back to court themselves rather than me needing to take it there myself.

OP’s posts: |
colouringindoors Wed 22-Sep-21 19:37:04

Well done OP flowers

InABetterPlaceNow Wed 22-Sep-21 19:40:06

colouringindoors

Well done OP flowers


Thank you! <3

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thequeenoftarts Wed 22-Sep-21 19:45:36

A huge well done to you, you should be very proud of yourself for all the changes you made in your life to prove to everyone your children were that important to you.

Choked up here for you, and delighted you got a good social worker to believe in you.

DishingOutDone Wed 22-Sep-21 19:47:21

Do you think your success in getting the kids back is unusual? Do you think there are other mums who did all they could and still lost their family?

InABetterPlaceNow Wed 22-Sep-21 19:52:07

thequeenoftarts

A huge well done to you, you should be very proud of yourself for all the changes you made in your life to prove to everyone your children were that important to you.

Choked up here for you, and delighted you got a good social worker to believe in you.


Thank you!

We've been through many, many social workers over the years and I do feel for people who get less than great ones. My biggest piece of advice is to let anything you don't agree with wash off your back and focus on anything you might feel has merit and work on that. Ofc with lots of talking to whoever can listen to make sure the things you are "washing off" aren't actual issues!

Grab support from everywhere you can find it, build relationships with people "in power". I built relationships with my kids schools, counsellors, sure start workers, CAMHS workers, college, etc etc. If you can't find anyone to work with, then you are probably the problem (sorry). But if you build up enough support with as many services as possible, then when you get a "bad / mismatched" social worker then you have back up of that makes sense.

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LastGirlSanding Wed 22-Sep-21 19:52:30

That’s really quite something. Congratulations on making it through such a tough time and coming out stronger, takes a lot of courage. flowers

bloodywhitecat Wed 22-Sep-21 19:52:57

I take my hat off to you, I foster and I have an understanding of how hard you must've worked and how hard you fought. I wish you and your children every happiness.

pommepommefrites Wed 22-Sep-21 19:53:26

Was he just violent to you or was it to the children too? Why would they have been taken off you? Sorry if these are triggering questions. You sound inspirational and very strong.

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