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has anyone else had their child wrongly taken into care?

(23 Posts)
beckadeville Thu 01-Nov-12 09:29:55

I had my baby in July and due to my partner at the time being emotionally abusive, my dad involved the ss.

I met with a ss 4 days before my son was born, she stayed for about 15 minutes. She encouraged me to leave my partner but in the same breath told me I wouldn't be able to cope as a single mum as I'm 'not strong enough'. I should also point out this was the first time I ever met this lady.

2 hours after the birth of my son, AR I will call her, walked into the labour room and told my partner he had to leave and was not allowed to see our baby and that me and the baby could not go home. She offered no help as to finding somewhere else to live and said that was down to me. I wasn't even allowed to go back for our belongings. I later fiend out this was before she'd even done an initial assessment.

2 data later I received a phonecall saying that if we didnt move to my sisters in high Wycombe that she would take my baby away and to get a solicitor as she was taking us to court. We went to court and a interim care order was granted and my son and I moved to high Wycombe the following day. Again no assessments were done.

8 days later, AR showed up and said she was taking my baby. she had no formal papers saying that he had to go into care, just said if I dont hand him over I will be arrested. She told me to go home back to my partner and shed be in touch. Again no assessments were done.

The first weekend apart they took my son into hospital, as he still had a limp on his head from the ventouse delivery and they went to see if I had done it to him.

My contact with him had to be supervised and was for an hour 3 days a week. However I was lucky if I got 1.

I immediately applied for another court date. AR used it against me that I had gone back to my partner despite the fact she had told me to. I asked her for help to find other housing for just my son and I and she said no. The only way I could get him back was if I was on my own. I went to the council and explained my situation and they put me on the housing list, however they put me right at the bottom. I live in a small area and private renting was very limited. In the end I had no choice but to kick my baby's dad out and get an injunction order on him so he couldnt come back.

I applied for another court date and it was orderedthat my son be returned to my care in four weeks.

The four weeks passed and at the next court date came, but the ss decided they wouldn't not return him to my care until they had seen my phone records, despite my solicitor, my exes solicitor and my son's guardian and solicitor opposing this. We did not have enough court time to contest this so had to go along with it.

In the mean time, AR went off sick for mental health reasons and a new sw was assigned.

My phone records have come back and proven that my ex and I have not been in contact, and yet I still have to wait a week for the rehabilitation plan to begin that lasts 10 days.

It has taken nearly4 months for a core assessment to be done, still no initial one has been done. The new sw had no choice but to complete it in 4 days when it takes a minimum of seven weeks to complete.

My son's foster carer has complained that she cannot get him into a routine because he sees me so often (now five days a week for 3 hours) and that he is too clingy because I show him too much attention. She has also contacted the ss trying to delay him coming home so that her family can say bye to him?!

He is due home in 13 days and I cannot wait.

The next stage is taking it back to court with my solicitor to complain. I am looking at receiving £125,000 in compo, but this will never bring back the first four months of my son's life.

Has anyone else experienced anything like this? My case was so badly done and I have heard that AR has an appalling reputation, so I surely can't be the only one?

Italiangreyhound Thu 01-Nov-12 09:39:26

Hi beckadeville, I have never been in your shoes and am not yet an adoptive parent. But I felt having read your very sad post that I must make contact and wish you well.

So I just wanted to send you my very best wishes for your reunion with your son. I am so sorry you have been through this experience and I really hope all will be smoother from now onwards. I hope you will get whatever help is needed.

All the best for you and your son.

LaurieBlueBell Thu 01-Nov-12 12:25:56

Hi beckadeville well done you for staying calm and working with the department to get your baby back. I hope you can build a happy future without your abusive ex.

I'm a foster carer and adopter. I am shocked at the FC complaining about your contact. I admit it is hard to get a baby into a routine when they have a lot of contact but it is our job to manage that. The parent has a right to build a relationship with their child, she is being ridiculous. and a bitch
Saying a proper goodbye to a child is important to all concerned in a foster family. However, she should manage that within the timescales agreed.

Good luck.

beckadeville Thu 01-Nov-12 12:38:16

Haha I thought the same!

I am just excited now to look to the future and to clear my name as a bad mum. I really don't feel the way Ive been treated has been fair. Especially when, and a major point I forgot to mention, I would regularly get phonecalls from AR threatening to take my son and that I was a bad mum.

I just wondered if anyone else has had an experience similar or something and wanted to get my story out there to make sure it's not just me that thinks it's wrong!

backtofront Thu 01-Nov-12 12:41:51

beckadeville Thu 01-Nov-12 12:41:51

And I apologise for my spelling, I'm on a touchscreen and auto correct is horrendous!

parsnipcake Thu 01-Nov-12 13:01:22

His, I'm an fc and so sorry to hear of your experience. I have had lots of babies and children because of domestic violence, it can be extremely damaging to a child to watch it, and many of the older children I have looked after have been severely disturbed because of violence they have observed. I think this is why SS can be so zealous. As a fc I get very frustrated with how slow everything is, and what you describe is common, sadly. I echo what's been said about routine - I sonetimes ask for contact times to be changed so a baby can have naps and parents can have better contacts, but contact is really important so I am sad you haven't had a positive experience.

I hope everything goes well for you and you and your child can enjoy the test if your lives and move forward.

parsnipcake Thu 01-Nov-12 13:05:37

I'm not sure about the compensation though, what you describe sounds fairly standard. Rehabs aren't rushed because they have to make sure there are support services in place, and that you can cope - often there isn't as much general help around for a 4 month old as there is for a newborn, so the HIV etc will have to be notified etc.

beckadeville Thu 01-Nov-12 13:09:53

I can understand when there is domestic abuse involved, I see now that the environment I was living in was not suitable for my son and the best thing I ever did was leave his dad. However I don't see the justification of taking a baby into care because I was emotionally abused, and bit bring offered any help whatsoever.

In all fairness to his fc, she has been brilliant. She regularly sends me pictures and texts me over the weekends when I don't get to see him. I was just upset to learn that she was trying to delay him coming home by a few weeks so her friends and family could spend more timewith him before he comes home.

Thank you for all your words of support, I'm glad I've found this site, it's nice to finally be able to talk to people who listen

LaurieBlueBell Thu 01-Nov-12 14:15:35

I agree with parsnip about the compensation. It sounds as if your first SW wasn't coping well. They do work under enormous pressure (I understand in your position that would be the last of your concerns).

Maybe you would be better off just moving forward and enjoying having your baby home.

Good to hear the FC is keeping in touch with you.

beckadeville Thu 01-Nov-12 14:26:12

The compo isn't a main factor for me. If she wasn't coping well she shouldn't have the power she did, because she tore my family apart.

KristinaM Thu 01-Nov-12 16:23:15

I'm so sorry to read your story and I hope you and your son are reunited soon. My advice to you is to concentrate on building your new life together and try to put this experince behind you

I think it's unlikely that you will get any compensation and you will waste a lot of time and energy fighting for it, only to get nothing at the end. You need that energy to build a better life for you and your son and to get back into training and employment yourself , if you are out of work. On to develop your career if you are working. It's not easy as a single mum -I have been there and I wish you all the best.

I also advise you to be very VERY careful to have no further dealings with social services. They do not take kindly to being crossed. Make very careful choices now in your life so you have no reason to have contcat with them -choose your partners wisely, do not fall out with your family or neighbours, do everything 100% right with nursery and school , look aftre your own health and make your sons welfare your top priority in life.

Good luck smile

Tigglette Fri 02-Nov-12 14:56:56

You sound like you've had an awful time of it - well done on working so hard to build a relationship with your little one. As hard as its been for you, the very fact that you were being emotionally abused would be considered grounds to have such a small baby taken into care. SW would have assessed whether they felt you would be able to protect your baby, which, if you can't protect yourself, is unlikely.

You're in a different place now, you sound much stronger and more able to meet your wee one's needs, enjoy building your future together but I would echo others who have said put it behind you as quickly as possible.

oldbootface Sat 03-Nov-12 22:42:04

well we've only heard one side of the story here,

KristinaM Sun 04-Nov-12 11:48:00

Well old boot, that's kind of the nature of mumsnet, isn't it? When soemone posts on AIBU , we don't refuse to comment because we haven't got both sides of the story. We can only take things on face value and assume that posters are telling the truth as they see it, unless there is good evidence to the contrary

beckadeville Sun 04-Nov-12 14:09:01

Oldbootface I don't think I would have such good grounds to complain on if I wasn't being honest and if things were done properly. And besides, I hadn't even thought of complaining until the Guardian of the case advised me to do so.

I only wrote my story to see if anyone out there had been through anything similar. Oldbootface I don't think it's fair to suggest I'm not being fully honest or exaggerating in anyway.

BooyhooRemembering Sun 04-Nov-12 14:16:22

"well we've only heard one side of the story here, "

oh hang on til we get in touch with the SW, baby's dad, FC so they can all give us their version, then we'll hold a trial and see who we believe hmm

JustFabulous Sun 04-Nov-12 14:19:03

Can someone really demand you give them your newborn baby without any paperwork?

ThingsThatGoBumpInTheNight Sun 04-Nov-12 14:36:42

*Threats to isolate the family – “don’t speak to anyone about the case, don’t speak to the press or media.” Often this threat is reinforced by suggesting that speaking out will automatically ensure the child is taken from their mother or father, or both.
Collusion between the Police, Social Services, NHS and legal teams so that the victim family is held on the outside of a ‘decision making ring’, over which they have no influence or right of appeal.
Deliberate isolation of the child from parents to family break bonds and relationships. The child is told that there is no contact with the parent(s) because they “don’t love you anymore.” In fact the parent is blocked by Social Services from seeing the child.
Repeated Court hearings which drain the family physically, emotionally and financially.*

This, from that link.. yes, it is very true.

"well we've only heard one side of the story here, " oh hang on til we get in touch with the SW, baby's dad, FC so they can all give us their version, then we'll hold a trial and see who we believe

LOL yes indeed.. only you wouldn't be able to because they would be afraid to speak for fear of recriminations from the SS or family court (prison for contempt of court for discussing a case ect)

OP.. oh my gosh my love i am so sorry.. but.. you have your child back, yes? Or back soon? Then thank every star in the sky and stay out from under their (SS) radar.. My DD was taken.. Wrongly and unlawfully, but the SS and other professionals and agencies joined together, manipulated situations and did all sorts of underhanded dirty shitty things to discredit me, keep her from being returned to her family, she recently came back to me, aged 17 and damaged as hell from her experiences. I would wish for that to happen to no other family. ever.

And i'm not a radical or an arm waving mad woman, i don't insist that SS are despicable bastards and each and every one should be shot at dawn, but i do think mistakes are made, terrible mistakes, that damage children and families, and that it can not be allowed to continue. If one childs' death at the hands of an abuser if one too many, so is the removal of a child from their family without proof and on the back of lies.

I am so happy for you. Hold your baby, protect him, eventually they will find bigger fish to fry and leave you alone to carry on your life unless you become a radar blip again.. don't.. Live well and away from them xx

ThingsThatGoBumpInTheNight Sun 04-Nov-12 14:38:12

JustFabulous, no they can't but they sound very convincing and threatening when they do, have had it happen myself but was more aware by then and told them to piss off. Only the police can remove a child under a police protection order and that lasts for 72 hours

Lotta1234 Tue 05-Mar-13 15:49:39

Beckadeville we were investigated by social services for an accidental
significant injury my daughter had when one month old. Had lots of threats of court and being arrested and we weren't allowed on our own with baby for five weeks. Then we were proved innocent by a community paediatrician as we'd been telling the truth all along. And funnily enough I found out our incompetent social worker was signed off sick after. Good for you for sticking up yourself. We came close to years of supervision or our daughter going into care because of social services when lots of other professionals - police, GP, health visitor - were saying we were innocent.

wakeupwakeup Thu 11-Apr-13 20:56:15

You will need a good solicitor, get one who is not on the SS panel. Get intouch with an organisation called parents against injustice and they will send you a fact sheet. Also have a look at type into Google Stop Forced Adoption Conference and listen to the speakers.

fasparent Thu 11-Apr-13 21:45:33

Being a fostercare'r for over 37 years also an adoptive parent we try too
be non-judgemental towards parents , as best end result is reunification , seen many over the years and its a great feeling when this happens, many stay in touch parents that is , kind of a friend some one too chat too when needed.

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