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... To think that "the system" in this country would protect a 14 year old girl??

(27 Posts)
Silvermoonsparkling Wed 27-Mar-13 13:46:54

Call me naive, but I am stunned by this.

I know someone, a single mum, who has an out of control teenage daughter. She was fine until a couple of years ago but is now a total school refuser and spends her time in bed or hanging around the streets of local town with similar kids. Alcohol abuse has now progressed to a drug habit - she now prostituting herself to get drugs. She is violent towards her mother who lives in fear of violence towards herself, as well as trashing of the house, electrical items etc when she feels like it.

Social services are involved and have been for a while. The police pick her up off the streets a couple of times a week.

What on earth should happen next? I can't get over the idea that she is effectively being raped, everyone knows, the system does nothing and it just continues.

TigOldBitties Wed 27-Mar-13 14:42:54

What do you think should happen? Bearing in mind her human rights and being able to do as she pleases within the law?

HeySoulSister Wed 27-Mar-13 14:46:10

I know kids like this too

My own dd was one too

What do you expect anyone to do with an adult sized 'child'?? You cannot 'force' these kids into anything at all

I had my own daughter arrested and I left her in the cells overnight.... 3 times!! She's nearly 17 now and we can have a laugh about it

Go read the teenagers section for further examples

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 27-Mar-13 14:46:39

It is horrifying and dreadful. However, what can be done? At 14 controlling her, without locking her up, is impossible. I've been in lots of youth correctional places and they are dreadful too, even the progressive 'good' ones have high suicide and self harm rates. Punish the men who are abusing her but there will always be more of them. I know a lot of sex workers and you would be horrified at the number of men who are abusive, violent, don't care the age of the girls they are buying to abuse.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Wed 27-Mar-13 14:52:42

Unfortunately society fails people like this. There are hundreds of young people who fall through holes in the system every year.

HeySoulSister Wed 27-Mar-13 14:53:46

We had help from the probation service op..... They were prob the best agency we were involved with. But guess what?? That service is being cut to the bone!

So.... What else is there....

Silvermoonsparkling Wed 27-Mar-13 14:57:32

Thanks for your responses. What do I think? Well I think the police could at least attempt to find and arrest these adult paedo drug dealers are who call her mobile and she then goes to meet. Can't be too difficult to follow a 14 yr old walking into town and see Reg plate of car she gets into. I agree there will always be more despicable scum to replace them but it would be a start.

Her drug dependency mean that she is now losing urinary continence.

Is the thinking then that it's a hopeless case - she's an adult sized child with human rights so let her be abused???

Smudging Wed 27-Mar-13 14:59:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CloudsAndTrees Wed 27-Mar-13 15:02:53

It's very difficult to protect someone from themselves. It would be great if there was something simple that could be done, but there isn't. Someone like this girl who is clearly set on her mission of self destruction can't be helped until she decides to help herself.

TigOldBitties Wed 27-Mar-13 15:04:10

I don't think she is a hopeless case, however there is only a limited extent to which you can help someone.

Its a vicious cycle as there always will be dealers as there always will be users. Where there is addiction there is invariably crime and prostitution or at least people behaving in negative ways to feed their habit.

The primary issue, from what you've said appears to be her drug addiction. I don't know if at that age there can be enforced rehab, and even if there was you can guarantee that if you force someone to go they won't choose to take drugs the minute they are released.

Unfortunately I can't imagine that she would even be considered a priority case by the police.

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 27-Mar-13 15:04:54

Not a hopeless case, just maybe hopeless at the moment.

I do think we need to take sexual crimes MASSIVELY more seriously. If someone is willing to pay for sex with a drug addicted minor they really must be a... I can't actually think of a word that is bad enough. It won't save her though because there will be more to take their place.

MrsTerryPratchett Wed 27-Mar-13 15:06:07

Oh, and they've closed lots of the very good, residential rehabs. FWIW rehab works for people who want to be there. You can detox someone but they have to do the work to stay clean.

delboysfileofax Wed 27-Mar-13 15:13:21

She's violent towards her mother and trashes the house?

The simple answer is prison surely? I appreciate the default for mumsnet is that she is some sort of "victim" but she also has to be responsible for her own actions

Silvermoonsparkling Wed 27-Mar-13 15:14:41

I know there is talk of rehab but yes I can totally appreciate it is hardly a solution if she doesn't want to get away from this lifestyle - which she apparently doesn't.

Doesn't it make you want to hug your children closer. I think many of us just have no idea how easily apparently 'normal' kids could just go off the rails like this.

Silvermoonsparkling Wed 27-Mar-13 15:18:58

Del boys, yes think her mother would be safer, and it would be in the girl's best interests if she were in some kind of prison. Away from heroin (well hopefully) and being raped by drug dealers.

Selks Wed 27-Mar-13 15:20:48

You don't appear to have the full facts, OP, of what social services and other agencies might be doing to help this young girl.

It's not an easy situation to address particularly if the girl is actively mixing with undesirable people, but what social services should be doing is addressing it as a child protection issue, the girl should be on a child protection plan and her parents should be fully on board with this. In some circumstances social services may be able to address these problems via a child in need plan. Either way a full 'core assessment' should have been done to identify all the issues i.e. referral to drug support services for her substance abuse issues etc.

Once a multi-agency plan is in place then the family and all the agencies can work together to help the girl exit this situation and support her in developing other behaviours and support. If she is being exploited then the police may already be involved gathering evidence for prosecution but this can take time particularly if the girl is unwilling to give evidence.

If things don't improve with a plan of action such as I have described then there is always the option for the girl to be removed to a secure children's home to get her out of the situation and ensure her safety.

I can understand your concern OP and it can seem like not much is being done but often with cases like these there is a lot going on to address the issue that isn't always visible. The cases that we have heard about in the media - and rightly so - are the cases where services and the police have not done enough. The majority of cases we do not hear about because the services are being effective, the young person is successfully supported and the concerns end.

However if what I have described is not happening for the girl you describe and you feel she is being unsupported and is at risk you must phone the police and social services to pass on your concerns.

delboysfileofax Wed 27-Mar-13 15:22:53

well unfortunately it's just as easy to get drugs in prison, but I don't think that matters. She needs to be punished to get it into her head that she cannot just do whatever she pleases in life. there are always consequences

Silvermoonsparkling Wed 27-Mar-13 15:31:34

Thanks selks and del boys. Yes multiple-agencies are involved but seemingly impotent over the last 18 months to effect any kind of behavioural change. She is going downhill fast, looks dreadful, incontinent, stinks. I appreciate I am not aware of all the facts, of course not. I just hear regular tearful ghastly updates from her emotionally wrung out mum.

Selks Wed 27-Mar-13 15:36:42

Is it being treated as child protection Silvermoon? If not it should be - doing that usually means that action steps up a gear.

TigOldBitties Wed 27-Mar-13 15:41:46

No it doesn't make me want to hug my children closer, maybe many of us aren't aware of these types of things but I also think many of us are. The so called 'underworld' is quite present in lots of people's lives you wouldn't expect.

I strongly believe in personal responsibility and the right to behave as you please. Support should be offered but ultimately her behaviour is exactly that, her behaviour. Her mistreatment of her mother and any law breaking should be handled as is, it the decision to do those things are hers.

As a teen I behaved in ways which might be considered very dangerous, were certainly illegal and didn't do me much good. I never really mistreated my parents but otherwise I was completely 'wild'. The only person I blame is myself, the only person I really harmed is myself and I don't regret it at all. I'm now a respectable member of society.

Silvermoonsparkling Wed 27-Mar-13 16:26:57

Tigs if she were an adult, I would agree with you. But this is a 14 year old who has got involved with the wrong people and it has now led to her dependence on them and regular rape. God only knows what they've threatened her with if she were to give evidence against them. Not sure I can accept it's all her fault and she must take consequences. She made an enormous mistake as a 12 year old and she can't now break free.

twinklesparkles Wed 27-Mar-13 16:34:51

What difference does it make if her mum is single??

If she was from a married family would she be magically a better kid???


Silvermoonsparkling Wed 27-Mar-13 16:40:05

??? Is only relevant because it's just her and her mum in the house. There's no extra adult there to support the mother going through this hideous time with her daughter.

MrsDeVere Wed 27-Mar-13 16:53:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Silvermoonsparkling Wed 27-Mar-13 17:00:31

Thanks Mrs Devere, yes, her mum was talking about a Section 20. Just have to hope that if it's going to happen, it happens soon. Just cannot see how this situation can be allowed to continue.

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