Any advice for Texas grandma taking care of the kids?

txsvickiNovember 9, 2002

Hi- I have 4 grandkids, age 1,3,6, & 8 years old. They all are living with me for the past 2 months after being removed from their home by children's protective service. They were being neglected due their parent's drug use, and because of the continued drug use, it looks like I am about to get custody of them. My husband is disabled,in bad health which affects our income.I work part time and have been trying to get a bachelor's degree, but it will take 2 more years. Does anyone know anyting about Texas laws? I am looking for any advice, tips, etc. I know I can get foodstamps and child health insurance, but am worried sick over how I will provide for 4 children and have the energy to try and work full-time. I've barely had enough spare time to make many phone calls or gather information, but have now decided to search the internet and join a few groups seeking advice. I want to be prepared when the social worker visits, so that I know what questions to ask.

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What a sad story! I can't help you with Texas laws. All I could say was to make sure the house is in order (to impress the social worker) and the kids clean, well-fed and quiet if possible! You are one brave woman to start raising this size family at this particular time in your life. But you know darn well you're doing a miracle for those kids. They will thank you when they're older. Their only other alternative is to be split up and put into foster homes. I wish I could help you out but I'm as far away as I could be in Montreal, Canada.

Are you aware that in larger towns and cities there are several places you can go for free or very inexpensive clothing? Salvation Army tops the list, then other religious outlets. Don't be too shy to call these places for help. Can you get help from surrounding churches--at least for school clothing? Know that you are not alone with really bad serious problems. There should be people near you that can help with a few things.

I wish you health and happiness and many solutions to your problem. God bless you and your family!

    Bookmark   November 9, 2002 at 4:28AM
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1. If your husband is disabled, can he get disablity insurance thru social security etc. Is there state disability avaiable? You may need some legal help and because you appear to be around senior citizen age, from 55-up, you can contact some senior groups to ask for help. As to your grandkids, thank you for caring and doing your best. For clothes, check the cosignment shops also, as they usually have good clothes and toys in better condition. Do you belong to a church? Talk to the principal of the school, as most PTA;s have clothing closets usually at the chairman of that dept home. How about medical, talk to the children's dr's, the social service department of the local medical center/hospital. You may not be able to work full time, talk to your employer for ideas. How about the children's social worker. If you do not feel he/she is helping you out, talk the their supervisor. I am sure the children are upset also being taken away, and make sure they know they did NOTHING wrong. Do the parents have visitation rights? Are they getting some counseliong also? (children) Are their other relatives that could help, not financially, but with baby sitting. Could the children be again released to their parents? Don't be afraid to ask any one for help and if you do not get the answers you want, keep asking. Keep everything documented in a notebook-- I truly wish you the best.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2002 at 1:18PM
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I can`t really add anything to the really good suggestions above (I don`t even live in your country) except take some time with your kids. I raised my daughter myself and had to work full time. It was no fun. I went around worried all the time about her not being left alone, money, etc., etc., with the result, I learned much later, that she grew up thinking I didn`t really care about her. The opposite was true. So, if you take my advice, take time with your kids, put aside your problems sometimes to be doing things with them, even just reading together, doing kid stuff, having some fun and good talks, getting connected. They will need the security of feeling close to you and to your husband. The ages you mention are precious times. All the best. God bless.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2002 at 12:36PM
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Hi, I recently moved to Texas as a senior citizen. Our local senior center has a senior advocate (a volunteer) to help explain what is available to someone in Texas. She even helped me find a doctor that would take medicare. Keep looking on the internet - I found my subsidized housing thru a search of elder texas or something similar. (It's a great place, keep my pet & garden) Don't forget about the religious links - especially Lutheran and Episcapalian (spelling) It doesn't matter that your not that religion - check anyway. There is help out there, just don't give up on looking. I'll keep you and your family in my prayers. Make sure you find SOMEthing to laugh about every day - it will help alot.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2002 at 8:30PM
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Just wanted to say thanks to all who replied to my message. I'm not senior yet, I'm 48. I am getting custody of the kids due to the parents drug use. CPS is helping a lot. I have since got foodstamps, tanf (monthly cash payment), and health insurance for the children. It's some help but not as much as a foster parent would get. I mostly need help with babysitting and some respite care. There are really no other relatives who are much help. My teenage daughter helps out a little and my husband also. He is on social security disability, and is very stressed by all this. We've been married 21 years, he is the step-granddad, and has threatened to leave several times. Well, this will be my final post because I do not intend to PAY to be able to post on the internet, lol.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2002 at 1:11AM
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Did you know that once you have paid, it is good for 1 year? Continue to write us. You need the emotional support! And we love to hear of people doing such kind selfless acts as yours.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2003 at 11:20PM
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How are things going. I think you can still post here since you joined November 7 2002. You can post until November 7 of this current year.
Let us know how things are going

    Bookmark   February 16, 2003 at 5:14PM
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