Juvenile Justice, filing warrants and Social Services

moonie_57July 29, 2008

Another post concerning teenagers prompted me to post our turbulent events of the past 7 weeks. I have filed disciplinary papers against DD who just turned 16 last week. We just feel as if we are out of options and basically, we have no parental control over her. Nothing works fast "in the system" so we're still waiting for the paperwork end to be completed. After, DD will be on what amounts to probation.

DD befriended her friends mother, a 28 y/o woman with 5 kids (one of which is due any day) and prefers to stay there instead of home. It's a place where she can chill, have no responsibilities and come and go as she pleases. It got to a point where she refused to come home at night, and actually spent 4 nights there against my wishes. To make a long story a bit shorter, I ended up calling the police to get her home. She came home that night, and the next night she was refusing to get in the car with me, telling me the woman would drive her home. I gave her 15 minutes and told her I would again call the police if she wasn't home. I waited the 15 minutes, then called the police. DD was home before the deputy arrived. He informed me of the disciplinary action, which until that point I was unaware of.

The next day, I went to Juvenile Justice, told them of what had been occuring and the PO explained to me what all to expect if I filed the papers. She said one thing the judge would ask me is why I had not brought charges against the woman. She explained that DD was breaking the law and the other mother was complicit in the act. Actually, they view DD as a runaway.

Within a weeks time, several incidents occured, which was actually what gave me the backbone to finally call the police. One night, during this period where I could not get DD to come home, the other mother and her ex boss took DD and some other kids to a baseball game. I had spent about 7 hours trying to find DD, not having a clue where she was. Cutting this explanation short, they had gone to the ballgame, then to ex bosses office in another town. He, the ex boss, had a handgun in his glove compartment and it came up missing. He had been drinking, got mad, and left them stranded in the other town. They.. including DD, ended up at the police station over this stolen gun. Apparently, one of the other kids got the gun and tossed it out. I don't know the full details still, but it boils down to that woman taking DD off for hours and hours, without my permission, and putting her in a serious situation.

Another incident involved this woman's ex, whom she is pregnant by. The ex boyfriend apparently enjoyed the company of someone else, and this woman decides she wants to go confront the two of them. She took DD with her, and the woman ended up with having 3 charges brought against her for assault, communicating threats and harrassing phonecalls.

The 3rd incident happened when DD came home and stated that his other parent told her that she could move in with her. I immediately got in my car and went to ask her why she would tell a 15 y/o girl that she could move in with her. Her response to me was that she wouldn't turn away a child that had no place to go. I told her DD had a home.

During all this time, I was telling that other mother she needed to tell DD that she could not stay at her home. The following day, after again not getting DD to come home, she pulled up in my driveway and told me she did not let DD stay at her house the previous night. I asked DD where she stayed, and she said at another friends house.

It was this night that I finally called the police, and then found out that the other mother had lied to me, and that indeed DD had spent the night at her house.

So, back to leaving Juvenile Justice.... I went immediately to that woman's house, told her and DD that I had just spoken to JJ and about possibly bringing charges against the other parent. The woman did not understand how I could hold her responsible in any way. I explained to her about being complicit in DD being listed as a runaway.

Although DD was back home at night, she still chose to spend the day at that woman's house, against my wishes. 2 days later I filed the warrant against the woman... contributing to the delinquency of a minor. DD got mad and called Social Services on her dad because of an incident about a month before.

During an argument, she told her dad to leave her the "F" alone. He smacked her in the mouth and busted her lip. So, she reported this to SS. Within a couple hours, we had a meeting with SS worker. Unfortunately for DD things didn't go like she was expecting... and I really don't know what she expected... but, SS was not on her side. So, now we have SS in our lives until they close the case.

We are going to family counseling and DD is having individual counseling. It's too soon for there to be any headway, but we're working at it. At lease we the parents are working at it... DD only goes because she has no choice. We're waiting for juvenile justice to get the ball rolling, and we have another court date the end of next month. We have been to court twice, but the first time the woman asked for a court appointed atty, which was denied. She was given 3 weeks to attain her own atty. On the same court date, she also has the assault charges to be heard that occured over the ex boyfriend. The second time we went to court, the woman did not come. She called in and said she was in labor. The judge held the case open until all other cases were heard then she had the bailiff call the hospital. The hospital said that the woman did not check in there. The judge put out a failure to appear warrant. I'm not sure if they have picked her up on that charge, but there's rumors that she went to a hospital 1 1/2 hours away and could possibly get that squared away.

Anyway, obviously in the interest of time and space, I've left out alot of details. In many ways I feel like I've done the right thing by filing the papers against DD and by filing the charge against the other parent, but some days I second guess myself. When you bring the law, and Social services into a situation, sometimes it spirals out of control.

Really, I just want to get this court date behind us, get DD on probation, because she continues to have contact with this woman on probably a daily basis, although the woman is not allowed contact with DD, based on the warrant.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

OMG! I feel for you. My DD is 16-1/2 and I'm not sure what I would do in your case. I do believe that those parents should be held accountable for "aiding" your daughter.

Here, a child can move out legally at 16 and there's nothing a parent can do.

My DD's friend has divorced parents. She doesn't get along with her mother and has a good relationship with her stepdad. Her mother, IMO, is really "pusing it" with her DD. I just recently commented to my DH that so-so doesn't realize that her DD can decided to go move in with her dad if she wanted to cuz she's 16 now.

Family counselling is a good thing. It can't hurt. However, if your DD is forced to go, it still might not work if she doesn't "talk" and is not honest about her feelings and stuff.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   July 30, 2008 at 9:35AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

What do you think attracts your DD to this other woman, that she wants so badly to be there? Does the woman allow drug/alcohol use in her home, or allow your daughter to do whatever she wants there? Does your daughter have a relationship other than friendship with anyone in the house? In other words, why is she so desperate to be with this woman and all her kids?

What can you change to slowly heal the relationship with your daughter? Are there areas you can compromise?

Are you able to really hear your daughter to understand why she so badly wants to be in that home and evaluate where you can begin to heal this relationship? Is she capable of expressing the truth even if it's hard to hear?

I wish you the best as you fight for your daughter.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2008 at 5:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

khandi - that's the thing... you don't know what you'll do until you're faced with the situation. It was very difficult to take the warrant out on the other parent and even more difficult to file those papers against my daughter. She feels like I've ruined her life, but in actuality, all she has to do is follow the law, and the rules of our home. If she can't manage that, then she needs help from outside sources. It's just a very sad and hurtful situation.

Here, a child can not move out until they are 18 or have been emancipated. This is one of DD's goals (emancipation) she wants to work on through counseling. It would take her quite awhile and alot of work before she could convince a judge that she is mature, responsible and financially independent to go out on her own. Her other goal is to get us off her back, which she doesn't realize would take cooperation on her part. But, if she were successful in those two things... who could ask for more?

bnicebkind - you have asked the same question I keep asking myself. What attracts her to that woman and that sort of life style???? I can't answer that although my mind seems to stay wrapped around that question continually. We live a quiet easy life. That woman is surrounded by drama and seems to enjoy our troubles. I don't think drugs or alcohol is involved but I could be wrong. I'm assuming they will drug test my daughter when her probation becomes active. We have an appt this coming Tuesday. There is no other relationship within that home other than the friendship with the mother and a lesser one with her 13 y/o son. The friendship began with the son and was based on video game playing in the beginning.

At this point, I don't know what we can do to heal the relationship. Hopefully counseling will help. We are at odds constantly because her dad and I won't let her do "anything". There are many things she can do... she just needs to find new friends or get back to her old ones. She has given up her friendship with others in order to be with the other parent. It's just very strange in one way, but it another, it makes sense. She has a "friend" that can drive, has her own place, is "cool" and doesn't expect anything resembling responsibility from her. Actually, dealing with this woman has been like dealing with another teenager.

I thank you both for your well wishes.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2008 at 11:27AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Now I've gotten on the subject and can't seem to stop.

I believe one of the problems we're having is generational. DH and I are both in our 50's and DD's friends parents are all young parents. Of DD's closest 3 friends that she hung around with before, all had mothers that were teenagers when DD's friends were born. All of them party on the weekends, which isn't a problem with me as long as my DD isn't involved in it. I don't see anything wrong with parents having a drink around their children, or even around mine, as long as they aren't falling down drunk. In the past, I've had times where DD was not allowed to spend the night at friend's houses because of the activity of the moment. She didn't appreciate that either. But, that's my call, in the interest of my child. These are some of the things we've faced in the past. We just aren't "cool".

    Bookmark   July 31, 2008 at 11:45AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Is it at all possible that the relationship with this woman is beyond friendship?

Keep looking for ways to heal the relationship with your daughter. Is there anything she enjoys doing that the two of you could do together to lighten things up between you. Can you look for common ground and build on it? For example...can you plan special meals and help her learn to cook them? Can you work on a Habitat house together? Could you work at a soup kitchen together once or twice a month? Or get her interested in a sport/arts/music, etc. and support her interest? Or perhaps get her into something where she will meet new friends that will be better for her? Could you enroll her in a photography class or help her find new interests. What area could she be gifted in, or at least fit within her interests? Can you build something from that?

Is she an only child? Does she crave the active family at the other house?

    Bookmark   July 31, 2008 at 11:32PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I feel your pain, although things never got quite to that point with DD#1 (trust me at that age the first "D" didn't stand for DEAR) it did get awfully close. She is now 27 just got married Saturday, and we are very close. If you'd have asked me then what our relationship would be like in 10 years I would have said she'd not be talking to me! Please keep trying, do everything you can to show her you do love her and are doing this ecause you love her. Then you know you did all you could, and you can tell her...I did that because I loved you so much. None of that hit home so much with our DD#1 until she had her daughter (yes she did it backwards, baby then marriage), and I told her...you know how much you love that little girl, well that's how much your Dad and I love you! I think it really hit home then.


    Bookmark   August 1, 2008 at 7:30AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

moonie, while all of this is difficult (I cannot imagine, my little fellar is only 8), you are doing it well. You're motivated in the right way, saying the right things, and doing the right things. Keep up the good work, I'm proud of you.

It shows:
"It was very difficult to take the warrant out on the other parent and even more difficult to file those papers against my daughter. She feels like I've ruined her life, but in actuality, all she has to do is follow the law, and the rules of our home. If she can't manage that, then she needs help from outside sources. It's just a very sad and hurtful situation."

    Bookmark   August 1, 2008 at 8:29AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Are there any "parenting skills" classes that you can take? Our daughter has anxiety and we went into family therapy to work on our "communication skills" because supposedly our daughter's home life is too stressful for her. We are getting help in how to parent a child who is anxious. It is helping a great deal. Maybe there are classes that you and your husband could take on how to parent a "difficult" child.

As a matter of fact, we had a session yesterday afternoon and I was reading some statistical charts while we were waiting. There are MANY areas in which a child has difficulties in, such as social phobia, anxious, reclusive, deliquent behaviour, and extreme deliquent behaviour, etc. Your daughter might be in the "deliquent behaviour" range. A list of "actions" were listed under each "behaviour". It was very informative. You should call your Children's Mental Health Center for information (our sessions are held at such a center). They might be able to give you some useful resources to help you in this matter. It wouldn't hurt to find out!

    Bookmark   August 1, 2008 at 9:44AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"We just aren't "cool"."

Age has nothing to do with it, good parents are NEVER "cool". They're understanding, encouraging, empathatic, involved without hovering and most of all fair, but not "cool" in the way the average rebellious teenager thinks would be "cool". (permissive, conspiratorial, and for the most part, uninvolved - unless they are rescuing the teen from the consequences of their own bad choices)

Stick to your guns; if the state is willing to prosecute the other woman for contributing, let them. That woman has her own issues (including what I suspect to be a "rescuer" personality), but her relationship with (and influence over) your child needs to end. With any luck at all, the punishment will be strong enough that she'll think long and hard before taking in the next "stray" teenager that crosses her path. So, it might not help you (other than ending thisparticular relationship), but it could help someone else in the future. That said, I hope you understand that even after this woman is out of the picture, your daughter is probably going to find someone just like her. Don't give up.

Continue to fight for your child, even if you end up in counseling alone. I'm hesitant to mention it, and I want to make sure you understand I am not judging, but it is encouraging that you and your DH are going to counseling. While her use of the "f" word is not appropriate, smacking her in face and busting her lip was way over the line. I realize it was a heat of the moment thing, but it will be good to get this worked out. You would never allow your DH to strike you in anger, and it shouldn't happen to your DD either. That's where the 'fair' part of parenting comes in, being able to keep a tight reign on your temper and making the punishment fit the crime even when you want to throttle the little monster. ;^)

I wish you and your family all the best, but most of all, I wish you wisdom and patience.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2008 at 2:03PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

bnice - you're question regarding their relationship was also something that I have pondered over. I wouldn't think so, and would hope not.

No, DD is not an only child, although her brothers are now grown and don't live in the home anymore. As far as trying to find activities together that would hopefully begin the healing process... DD hardly talks to me, will not ride in the car with me, unless absolutely necessary. But, today I did take her to my workplace where she could spend the afternoon riding around on a golfcart. She didn't like it when I went in the same direction as she did, but we did get drinks and snacks together. So, there is hope.

bloobird - I was surprised someone else hadn't already bruoght up the point about DH smacking her in the face. This is something DD hasn't gotten over and knowing her, she'll hold a grudge for a long time to come.
Not only was I upset about DH's actions, it also made me mad that he put me in a position where I could not back him up as a parent, and my partner.

khandi - we don't have a CMHC here in our area. In fact, it's very hard to get help here but by pushing and making contacts, I expect to do -something-. One thing, once a month individual counseling for DD is not enough. I have manage to get her in every 2 weeks, but I'm going to push for more than that. I feel like she needs it. As far as parenting classes... that's something I need to check into. Thank you.

Rob - thanks for your kind words.

    Bookmark   August 2, 2008 at 8:00PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

While it sounds like she is trying to role play as the "Cool older sister/hippie Mom, the reason your daughter is over there so often might have less to do with the woman than with what other teenagers she is allowing to use her home as a flophouse. (Like, possibly a boy?) Either way, it is an unhealthy relationship, and you are right to end it ASAP using whatever legal means you have available.

I completely understand what you mean about being angry at your DH, but you're working through that as a family, and it will make you both stronger. Given time, DD will also let it go; it was a slap in anger, not a lifetime of beating and psychological abuse. It will make her stronger too.

The standard wisdom is that in ten years, you'll all look back on this and laugh (or, if not laugh, at least not get angry), but ten years is a long time to wait for the punchline. :^/ So instead, just make it a goal to make it though one day - today. When it all gets to be too much and you don't see how you can go through another day, just tell yourself "This too, shall pass." Trust me, it will.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2008 at 12:26AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I thought I would update what happened in court, August 26th.

The woman was found guilty of contributing (harboring a runaway) and is not to break any laws for 12 months. I don't understand why the judge did not put any restrictions on her from having contact with DD. Guess he felt DD was as much to blame, as she is. Still, that woman is an adult.

DD is on probation and having to continue with counseling and had her first appt with a woman from the Major's Program, basically a mentoring type thing to help her become "community involved". DD was very unhappy about this and was unpleasant during the process today. It was embarrassing as well as hurtful by the things she said. I honestly don't know what terrible pain her dad and I have caused her to make her feel the way she does about us and about our home life.

Anyway, she still continues with her friendship with that other parent and is a little bit sneakier about it. My plan is to write the woman a reminder that we do not want her having contact with DD and if it continues, we'll refile the charges.

She is knowingly and willingly, aiding and encouraging DD to violate her probation by having contact with her.

Hope all that makes sense.... I'm very tired.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2008 at 8:13PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


How heartbreaking. I'm sorry.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2008 at 12:33PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Good to hear from you again. I hope your note does the trick and convinces this woman to mind her own business and leave your child alone.

I really feel for what you're going through,these are the worst years; but you'll get through this. Just keep telling yourself "And this too, shall pass".

    Bookmark   September 10, 2008 at 9:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

suzieque - thanks for that hug. I really needed it this morning. Don't know why but I've been close to tears all morning. Never in my wildest dreams did I ever imagine that our relationship with DD could take this direction.

bloobird - I haven't written the letter yet but it's still my plan... and to send it certified so that she has to sign for it. Just don't want any misunderstandings and want to know for sure that the woman realizes that just because we went to court that it isn't over... not if they continue that friendship. Our sheriff told me that often people will refuse to sign for a letter because of guessing of it's contents. If that's the case, he'll send a deputy out with the letter.

Just keep telling yourself "And this too, shall pass".

You first wrote that over a month ago. I've reminded myself of that very phrase several times. Thank you.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2008 at 9:48AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

More than a month has passed since I updated this thread so here goes....

I had mentioned that I planned to write that letter to the other mother, but at this point I still have not done it. First, I want to make absolute certain that DD is still having contact with her, but have not been able to substantiate it as of yet. Of course I -know- their friendship remains intact, just no proof. It's not as often as it had... no where nearing being as often since she now has returned to seeing her other friends.

DD attends a community college, going to the Gateway to College Program. This is a satellite campus with stores surrounding it. Her hours are 8AM to noon, and I take her and pick her up. One day last week she called and told me she had a ride home with another student. I told her fine, but still went to the campus anyway. After waiting awhile, I finally called her cellphone and she said she was on her way home... class had gotten out early.

So, the next day I got the same call.. she was riding home with another student so I made sure I got there early. Saw DDas she was coming out the door and she stated that she was waiting for the other student to finish up. I pulled off, circled around and came back. Just 8 parking spaces from the campus door sat the other mother. This is what I had been expecting. So, I got out of my car, asked her where DD was, she asked me how the "f" was she suppposed to know. Well, I was livid and got in my car and pulled off, my phone ringing. Of course it was DD, mad because she saw me go to the other mother's car. And I can not prove that the other mother was there to pick up DD.

Anyway, DD ended up riding home with me. Hasn't called to tell me she was riding with another student. If I get one of those calls, I'll be checking up. It's not time to back down yet.

Other than that, things are going fair. She comes home on time, goes to school daily, makes all her counseling sessions. But, I never know where she is when she's gone during the day. I have not been successful in getting her to check in with me. This is something she will answer to her PO for.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2008 at 7:09PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
estrangement from adult children
There seems to be a very common thread with all these...
parents of estranged adult children
I too have been where all of you are. I am so happy...
I don't trust future son-in-law, what should I do?
My daughter is old enough to be his mother. I have...
To parents of other heavy gamers...
Please do not attempt to moderate or restrict your...
Estrangement from adult child
I am, and have been, estranged from my adult child...
Sponsored Products
Unfinished Parawood Juvenile Chair (Set of 2)
Distressed Antler Wall Hook
| Dot & Bo
Tulip Juvenile | Søren Lingerie Chest
Pet Gear Cocoa Easy Step III Pet Stairs - PG9730CC
$56.99 | Hayneedle
LA Baby Babys Dreamland Crib Mattress - MT-4001-22H
$49.99 | Hayneedle
Little Tikes Lalaloopsy Toy Box Multicolor - 631870M
$99.50 | Hayneedle
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™