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Speaking of Alcohol...

Posted by sylviatexas (My Page) on
Thu, Mar 11, 10 at 17:39

There were a couple of references lately to insane behavior by people who were drinking, & one about how hard it is to prove that there was danger when a child is in the care of an alcoholic parent.

I just want to say...

keep at it, diligently, eternally;
do whatever you have to do.
Try to get the problem drinker to stop picking up the kids.
(You'll never get him/her to stop drinking.)

I once worked with a young mother whose 2 children had to visit their father every other week;
due to his numerous DUIs & his history of bar fights, he was under restrictions when the kids were with him.

The only reason he still had visitation, or exercised his visitation, was that his mother insisted;
she bailed him out, paid for lawyers, etc.

When he had an accident, drunk, with both children in the car, the courts ordered his mother's presence the entire 48 hours, & she agreed to it.

Late one Friday night/Saturday morning, the Dallas police called my co-worker to tell her that her children were in the Dallas Emergency Children's Shelter.

Their dad was dead.

When he had picked them up that afternoon, his mother was in the car, so he had dropped her off at home & had gone to a bar & ordered a pizza for the children.

He then proceded to get totally drunk (hey, it was Friday, he had a paycheck), get into a fight over a game of pool, & he got stabbed.

I don't know what if any trouble his mother got into for allowing her son to violate the terms of his visitation.

Those children could have been hurt or crippled or killed in the car accident or in who-knows-what other risky journeys their father took them on.

Keep your guard up, & keep your camera & a tape recorder on you, & keep up with what the courts are requiring of the person who is drinking.

Document any conversation in which the person sounds slurry/weepy/irrational/scattered/belligerant etc.

Take photos or videotape any altercations that take place in your presence.

If the person is yelling at you, threatening you, invading your "space", fold your arms & be sure your fingers are protruding from the other side;
a department store security guard taught me that this will establish that you are obviously not taking an aggressive stance or throwing punches, which is what the drinker is going to allege.

Document any mention of such slurry/weepy/etc behavior or speech by anyone else who talks to the person.

The more you can keep such a driver off the streets, the better chance you give his/her children & all the rest of us who are on the roads.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Speaking of Alcohol...

That story gave me chills Sylvia! Another thought I had is that if lovehadley's ss's bm shows up and seems as if she has been drinking I would probably want to call the police to document her coming drunk (AND PREGNANT!!!) to pick up her child!!


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RE: Speaking of Alcohol...

I hear you Sylvia, people need to do whatever they possibly can to protect kids from harm. 100% agree.
Unfortunately we are not getting very far ourselves with what we've been doing, much to our frustration.
BM is a closet drinker, is that how you call it? So nobody knows her 'secret', apart from her close (also alcoholic) friends and family. She's an expert at keeping up appearances, and also I guess people prefer not to see the signs when there are some (like the girls missing too much school because of hungover BM and the school ignoring the issue, but the dept of education also sticking head in the sand. Or CPS assessing BM over the phone and deciding there's no reason to worry about welfare of skids..) Anyway, obviously this is a sore spot for me.

When we went to court BM came away laughing, the court counselor did not see any issue with BM's drinking after interviewing the skids (who know how to keep this important secret).

As far as we know she doesn't drink and drive with the skids in the car. When they have to go to BM's best friends' place they have to stay the night when BM drinks. The skids don't like staying there (no bed, just sleep on floor with cushion and a blanket apparently..) but it's better than getting in the car.

Yesterday BM rang the skids at 4pm and when they'd been talking a while I started to suspect she was drunk. Usually when she is, she'll talk to the skids for hours and promise them the world. And yesterday, they talked for hours (had only been at our place for 1 day, so lots to talk about..?) and BM promised she's going to take them to funparks, buy them new clothes, take them to the movies blabla etc etc. We don't want her to ring our house drunk, but it has been awhile since last time so we were caught off guard I suppose.

And this is a BM with 2 more babies, who was taking care of them last night? It's just so depressing..


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RE: Speaking of Alcohol...

I think a video camera on a tripod facing the driveway is not a bad idea in the "picking up kids drunk" potential environment in which some find themselves.

Nothing like documentation to prove a point.


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RE: Speaking of Alcohol...

"If the person is yelling at you, threatening you, invading your "space", fold your arms & be sure your fingers are protruding from the other side;
a department store security guard taught me that this will establish that you are obviously not taking an aggressive stance or throwing punches, which is what the drinker is going to allege."

AUGHHH. I wish we had had a camera in our driveway when BM punched me.

These are all good points, Sylvia. Documentation is key. We need to get our tape recorder ready again for BM's next drunk call.

The problem is, like I said before, it doesn't matter WHAT she does when SS is with us. We would have a lot more ammunition if we could record a drunk call from her when SS is with her. The problem is, when SS IS with her, she calls DH a lot less!

It is a tough, tough situation. My guess with someone like her, who had been a dry drunk for almost a year, is that her behavior will continue to escalate until something bad happens. All we can do is document and pray that SS remains safe until we have more evidence to do something.


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driving

" Another thought I had is that if lovehadley's ss's bm shows up and seems as if she has been drinking I would probably want to call the police to document her coming drunk (AND PREGNANT!!!) to pick up her child!!"

I wanted to add, that of course we would immediately call the police if BM seemed intoxicated.

The problem is, during the school year, ALL pickups/dropoffs are at school. So we have no way of knowing what BM is like when she picks SS up in the carpool line. And, unfortunately, neither would the school. At SS's school (and I totally hate this!) the kids all flood out onto the sidewalk at 3:30 pm and are free to go. There are crossing guards but that's it. There is NO ONE making sure kids go to the correct cars, etc.

I HATE IT. At my DD's school (and granted, it is about half the size) the teachers personally bring each child to his/her car in the carpool line. The kids stand grouped according to classes, and as we drive through the carpool line, the teacher brings them out to the car. It is VERY controlled.

But at SS's school, all he does is see my car or see BM's car and he crosses the crosswalk and hops in. There is NO supervision from the teachers. No one would know if BM had had a few drinks, unfortunately.

DH gave the school the papers prohibiting BM from drinking while SS is with her, and filled them in on the history at the beginning of the year, but there is only so much they can see.


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RE: Speaking of Alcohol...

"the kids all flood out onto the sidewalk at 3:30 pm and are free to go. There are crossing guards but that's it. There is NO ONE making sure kids go to the correct cars, etc."

this shocks me.

The schools in my little town have teachers or teachers' aides or somebody, *lots* of somebodies, outside when the kids come pouring out/

They literally stop the kids before the kids get to the driveway & check each car to be sure it contains the right driver.

I once picked up an old friend's granddaughter, & the communication was exhaustive:

Grandfather called daughter at work & told her he couldn't make it & I was picking up 8-year-old granddaughter Chelsea.

Chelsea's mom called the school & told them what I looked like & told them that Chelsea knows me.

School tells the "front line soldiers", & one of them peers at me when I drive up, wanting to know who the heck I am & what the heck I'm doing there at that time of day.

Chelsea comes out rescues me & says,
"That's Sylvia. Hi, Sylvia."

snork!

& that's how it should be.


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RE: Speaking of Alcohol...

At my DD's school the kids pour out as well. There are lots of adults, and they "get to know you" but they are not checking names and taking numbers so to speak. There is no way they would ever know if someone was drunk unless it was horribly obvious.

Most drunks can hide it well enough to get away with it through a car window with relative strangers.


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RE: Speaking of Alcohol...

As long as I couldnt smell it on their breath, I dont know if I could tell. I had a business dinner one night (no one driving home, we were out of town), and I had one glass of wine, and one guy was really drinking, but seemed coherent to me.


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