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Social services- would this happen?

(38 Posts)
gingergenie Sun 19-Jun-16 23:33:24

I had an altercation with my partner, involving my mum. I was very triggered due to prior long-term abuse and violence and called the police. We are working through stuff and are by no means out of the woods, but in spite of the fact that I believe we need couple therapy and he needs to learn how to manage his anger better, his X wife is now claiming that social services have advised her not to let the children see him.

He lives with me and my children (not his)? And I haven't been advised to keep him away from my kids. Would SS do this? He hadn't been contacted. We have reason to believe parental alienation is in operation. He wants to be a part of his kids' lives. But apparently SS have advised her not to.

I don't believe her but I'm not a sw or a family lawyer. Can anyone advised?

AfroPuffs Sun 19-Jun-16 23:47:11

They quite often do make that suggestion if there has been violence, yes.

WannaBe Sun 19-Jun-16 23:50:42

How is it that his ex knows all this?

But yes, SS will often make suggestions along those lines. And TBH if my ex was involved in a domestic involving the police I wouldn't be letting the DC go there either. Nothing to do with parental alienation and everything to do with not wanting DC to be witness to domestic violence.

Abinob Sun 19-Jun-16 23:51:07

Yes but I think they would have contacted you as well. Me and dp had a drunken argument on a night out and someone called the police (dp wouldn't give me my bag and i fell into a bush) and ss came to visit us and check we weren't usually that mental and that ds was happy and fine etc, just the one visit then they closes the case but they did look into it so it does happen.

WannaBe Mon 20-Jun-16 00:08:29

The ex may have called SS for general advice though rather than specifically identified her ex. In which case they may well have advised that generally the children should be protected.

gingergenie Mon 20-Jun-16 00:08:40

There was shouting but no violence. Not sure if SS would have to also write to OH as well. His children have been denied contact for three years. She expected their youngest (then 6) to make her own access arrangements.

gingergenie Mon 20-Jun-16 00:10:04

And the one DC he had had contact with doesn't come here. She won't allow it.

WickedLazy Mon 20-Jun-16 01:00:58

If someone has reported him as violent or police have been at all involved, ss will have done a check on his kids.

DP got drunk one night and was really nasty, throwing things etc. My neighbour rung police as we were arguing in the street (long story), ds wasn't here, he was at mil's. I got a letter to ring sw, agreed a day and she called for about half an hour, spent most of it talking to dp about alcohol not being a solution, managing stress, etc. Also had health visitor out a few months later (both were really nice) and she made it clear I had to be able to put ds first, and be aware of any potential threats or dangers , but seemed happy with things, ds healthy and happy and doing well at nursery, alcohol banned from the house etc. Got a letter a week later saying I wouldn't hear from them again.

You might have similar if he's registered at your address. Difference is, you are there to supervise, his ex is not. The sw did suggest no unsupervised contact for a few weeks, (I asked if mil, his grandad, his aunt etc could supervise, and she said that was fine, as long as I trusted them).

It sounds as if dp and the ex don't get along/she doesn't trust him. Has he been to court for access? If the court denied it, do you know why? Was the relationship volatile with lots of shouting? Maybe she has seen him in a darker light than you have yet.

Apparently relationship counselling is not advised when one of the partners/spouses is in anger management. Dp has had counselling, and covered his anger as part of it, (and where the real anger comes from, and why trivial things can be the straw that breaks the camels back) and it seems to have helped. He's been diagnosed as having severe anxiety, which makes so much sense in hindsight. Maybe he knows he needs to sort himself out before he tackles seeing his kids again. 3 years is a long time when you're a kid.

Marilynsbigsister Mon 20-Jun-16 01:51:53

If he hasn't seen his dcs for three years, why hasn't he made an application to court for a child arrangements order that will compel his ex to make the dcs available for contact .? - if there are no issues with his behaviour , then it would be very unusual not to be granted contact. Even if he had a history of violence he would still be granted some form of contact.-- sorry but handwringing that he hasn't seen them without perusing through the courts is not acceptable.

BitOutOfPractice Mon 20-Jun-16 01:56:46

I can't help feeling that there is much much more to this than you're telling us op.

Marilynsbigsister Mon 20-Jun-16 02:35:20

Perusing- pursuing.

NanaNina Mon 20-Jun-16 02:47:13

I'm a retired social worker. How does your DP's ex know about what happened in the argument. Did the police ask for her name and address? When these sort of things happen and there are children involved the police send an "incident report" to social services. We used to get dozens (especially on a Monday!) and we barely had time to read them, maybe skimmed them for anything of concern. I can't recall a single time we took any action based on one of these reports. Couldn't read them for a start the handwriting was so bad!

IF social services have been involved, then they should be making contact with DP and you as well as the Ex. IF they haven't done that, then they are out of order, but sadly these days, all sorts of corners are cut because of under resourcing.

Sorry I haven't read all the thread but as usual people are making assertions based on lack of knowledge. I usually get shouted at for daring to say I'm a retired social worker, so I expect those to pile in soon. Incidentally are you in the UK as you talk of "parental alienation" and that's not a term we use in the UK.

Maybe best not to say any more until that's established.

WickedLazy Mon 20-Jun-16 02:58:36


Where I am in the UK, any domestic incident involving children means an automatic letter to ss. Sw assured us when she came out it was quite routine, and she was just here to help/find out what had happened. Dp admitted his mental health hadn't been good, but counselling was helping. Supervision was to ensure no drinking around ds (which never happened anyway, so happy to comply with that).

Has your dp ever had any mental health issues or previous problems with his behaviour while drinking?

youcantakethegirloutof Mon 20-Jun-16 03:33:44

They will not have contacted her directly if they did not come & do an assessment on you & your family, which if I'm reading correctly (3am & on 3rd wake up so may not be!!) they didn't. However, if she contacted them for advice they would advise her that she has the right to stop contact if she feels that her children are at risk of harm & that her ex would need to attend court to address either by seeking a child arrangement order or revisit a current order (child arrangement orders replaced residency & contact orders). There is a difference between this & SS saying that it is their view children should not go there, this would never happen without speaking with you about the incident and looking at the safety of your children. Hope this makes sense.

gingergenie Mon 20-Jun-16 07:13:30

He has had some contact with one child which said child has arranged. Other two children have refused. Mediation has taken place and court orders discussed but because of their ages now he's been told that they can refuse to come even if there is one. They are 16,13 and 10

wherethewildthingis Mon 20-Jun-16 07:30:10

nana Nina - its wrong for you to constantly give a poor and incorrect impression of social services on threads like these. I can assure you in pur area, every report of concern for a child- be it about domestic violence or anything else- is read carefully and acted on appropriately. We also do not "cut corners" but work very hard. You are retired- please confine your comments to your own seemingly very poor practice and stop making things harder for those of us still doing the job.
Sorry to derail the thread.

NerrSnerr Mon 20-Jun-16 07:37:09

How did his ex find out about the police being there? I also agree there must be a back story. From what you've written I wouldn't let my children stay at a house where the police have had to come because of drunken arguing.

gingergenie Mon 20-Jun-16 07:57:14

I have no idea. He is not a danger to his children.

WickedLazy Mon 20-Jun-16 16:30:55

If he is drinking and getting into a such a state the police had to come out, children can't be involved in a situation like that. That was why the sw and health visitor came out to me, to ensure it hadn't and wouldn't happen. I would also try to find out how his ex knew. Have the police maybe looked him up on the system, and seen some mention that he has access (or no legal restriction against it) to vulnerable children? That could indicate prior involvement with them and thus a call to ex wife. Or maybe they just did ask if he had any kids, and took the details. It sounds like you don't really know a lot of the ins and outs of this. Has he started counselling or therapy yet?

NanaNina Mon 20-Jun-16 16:52:28

Aha I thought it wouldn't be long before someone came along to insult me - you have today's prize wherethewildthingsare for being first off the starting blocks! What you think about my practice matters not one jot to me because I know the truth and at the end of it all, for all of us, that's what matters. And it's definitely against MN etiquette to "link" threads and make comments as in "it is wrong of you to give a poor and incorrect impression of social services on threads like these - I could report your post but I won't because that's pathetic.

I am retired yes but I don't sit knitting in a rocking chair (though I wouldn't mind that) I am still very involved in many aspects of social care. I act as a consultant to 1st year social work degree students and I am a "long arm" student supervisor affiliated to a local University that undertake the social work degree course. I also sit on a panel for interviewing applicants for the degree course. I have taken issue with the course director that I think some of the questions/issues in these interviews are too lengthy, poorly phrased and in some respects convoluted. I have asked that the Qs/Issues be written on cards to hand to the applicants (as this was a method we used in Social Services) in the interview process, on the basis that the interview was not a memory test, but sadly this has been declined.

I routinely worked for 60 hours a week and know the massive difficulty in recruitment and retention of social workers on a national basis. Please be assured I am not trying to discredit social workers - quite the reverse in fact. I lay the blame for the struggle that is involved in service delivery in all aspects of public services, at the feet of the government.

Sorry OP for de-railing your thread. There is (as usual on these threads) a fair bit of mis-information on here. I'm still not altogether clear of your situation because the waters get muddied by posters who have no knowledge of how social services operate and others seeking to discredit me. However I understand that there are no Court Orders made, though not sure why this is the case. I agree that there is absolutely no point in trying to make a 16 and 13 year old have contact with their father, and dare I say there will be a reason, or a variety of reasons. Maybe he displayed anger in his relationship with their mother, or possibly they were apprehensive of him - I don't know and there's little point in trying to guess. Many children/young people object to the fact that their father has a new relationship and step children. It's a minefield really. I don't honestly think the 10 year old is going to want to see her father without her brothers/sisters. Equally I think the ExW is "using this" as a way of ensuring there is no further contact. I still don't understand how she got to know of this incident. Did the police take details of his ExW and his children, names, addresses, ages etc. Probably they did and this would be a "police incident" sent to Children's Services. IF there is a decision that there should be some intervention (which I think regardless of what wildthings says, would be unlikely) then they would speak to the parents involved and their partners, and certainly not just tell the ExW to keep the children away. They don't have the authority to do this - only a court can make an Order to that effect. I know many people think social workers have the authority to do all sorts of things but that is NOT the case. All social work activity is (or should be) underpinned by relevant legislation. As an example of mis information Astropuffs up thread comments "yes they quite often do make that suggestion if there is violence" - can you evidence this assertion Astro

I accept I get frustrated on these threads because so many people dish out advice to people which is so wide of the mark and sometimes patent nonsense. It isn't going to help people who are distressed about a matter related to their children.

Claraoswald36 Mon 20-Jun-16 16:57:23

Place marking.

Spero Mon 20-Jun-16 17:49:31

It's perfectly possible she has been advised to exercise caution. I assume he has a history of this kind of behaviour? Why did his relationship with ex end?

Alarm bells are ringing for me if he would rather put focus on her bad behaviour than look at his own.

Children's Services usually take issues of violence in the home pretty seriously as impact on children is severe. I suspect there is more going on here.

wherethewildthingis Mon 20-Jun-16 20:40:20

Nana Nina instead of getting so defensive about people insulting you or to discredit you, maybe have a think about why other SWs often respond to your comments in a negative way.

apple1992 Mon 20-Jun-16 20:47:50

Our local police also send the incident report to the school if there is domestic violence incident and there are children.

Tiggeryoubastard Mon 20-Jun-16 20:56:02

Frankly if you, he and your mother had an altercation that was bad enough for one of you to ring the police then how the ex found out and what she's been advised is irrelevant. She is doing the right thing to keep her kids away from that sort of environment.

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