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Kinsa

I'm so heartbroken, and angry

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My little sister lost custody of her three children yesterday, ages 16, 13, & 11. The kids have lived with her their whole lives. My sister divorced her ex-dufus-husband ten years ago, and in those ten years her ex-dufus-husband has sued for custody of the kids about six or seven times, always losing each time. Well, this time he finally got what he wanted. My sister is a 911 operator with long-term stable employment, a GREAT mother, not on drugs or alcohol, owns her own home, etc. The only reason she lost custody is because the kids' grades are starting to tank (because the ex-dufus-husband messes up those kids so badly), and he's unemployed so he and his equally-dufus-girlfriend can "be there" for the kids more than my sister can.

 

Y'all have no idea how bad this is going to be. The kids are devastated, as is my sister. And I have absolutely nothing nice to say about ex-freakin'-dufus-husband, so I'll stop here.

So many :grouphug: My heart is breaking for her and you:-(

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I am so sorry. Just reading this makes my stomach hurt.  What a horrible mess.  (How can he continue to pay for this when he's unemployed?)

 

:grouphug: :grouphug:

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My heart hurts for your sister and her children. Why? Did the judge even talk to the children? :grouphug:

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I don't understand this. The children's "guardian ad litem" (child advocate) was subpoenaed. He stated on the stand that it would NOT be in the best interest of the children to remove them from the home.

If even the child advocate says it was a bad idea, how could this have happened? I really don't understand this!

On a related note, my big sister who lives in Mississippi is driving to Virginia to be with my little sister this weekend. Apparently the kids aren't coming home today after school (they are going directly to their "new home"), so this weekend is going to be very hard on my little sister. Big sister is going to be there for moral support.

 

 

(edited for a misspelling)

Edited by Kinsa
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Did I mention that the children's father was arrested for child abuse in the past??? Against the now-16yo. He was an infant.

 

This is like a bad dream.

Edited by Kinsa

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Did I mention that the children's father was arrested for child abuse in the past??? Against the now-16yo. He was an infant.

 

This is like a bad dream.

 

What the h-e-l-l is wrong with that judge? If/when he runs for re-election, decisions like that would be really good for people to know.

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What the h-e-l-l is wrong with that judge? If/when he runs for re-election, decisions like that would be really good for people to know.

Idk. I'm seriously wondering if he was working under a bribe.

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What county in VA are they in? IF they are in Fairfax or Loudoun Cy, I have an excellent family law firm I can refer you to. PM me if you want it. 

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I've never heard of children that age not being asked. In many states, it's in the law that once they're 13, their opinion has to be taken into account by the court.

 

If that had happened to me at 16, I would have just run away. I can even imagine exactly where I would have gone. Sigh.

 

I am so sorry Kisna!! 

 

In our state, the courts take the kids opinions into account by 12 or maybe younger and by 15, the kids can choose which parent they want to live with. Did the court appoint a guardian ad litem for the kids?

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I'm remembering the Tsimhoni kids - remember that case, where the judge was such a wacko? Apparently they were recently reunited with the mom, but it's now 9 months later. Gah. I sure hope this doesn't take 9 months to sort out.

 

Family courts are so messed up in this country.

 

ETA: Kinsa, the person who runs the FB page that's on the mom's side in the Tsimhoni case does advocacy for a LOT of cases like this where the family court seems to have gone really wrong. You might read through some of those links or ask for advice or something.

Edited by Farrar
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Idk. I'm seriously wondering if he was working under a bribe.

 

I was just going to ask if maybe the ex's attorney and the judge are buddies or something. I don't understand how something like this could happen otherwise.  

 

Though I've heard a lot of horror stories about the family courts in Virginia over the last few years, so that might have something to do with it. :( 

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Just got off a 2-hour phone call with my little sister. She was crying hysterically at first, but calmer by the time we got off the phone. Oh my, the poor girl. She watched as her kids were picked up at her house by ex-dufus-husband (I assumed they weren't coming home after school, turns out they did, but only long enough to gather a few items), and the kids were M-A-D, and crying. There was nothing she could do but let them go. And there was nothing I could say to her other than, yes, he's a heel, yes, he's manipulative, yes, you're a great mother and it's not your fault, etc. I wish I could do something. Ugh.

Edited by Kinsa

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Just got off a 2-hour phone call with my little sister. She was crying hysterically at first, but calmer by the time we got off the phone. Oh my, the poor girl. She watched as her kids were picked up at her house by ex-dufus-husband (I assumed they weren't coming home after school, turns out they did, but only long enough to gather a few items), and the kids were M-A-D, and crying. There was nothing she could do but let them go. And there was nothing I could say to her other than, yes, he's a heel, yes, he's manipulative, yes, you're a great mother and it's not your fault, etc. I wish I could do something. Ugh.

 

Nothing you can do but be there for her. 

 

So hard. 

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There are no words. I am so glad your sis will have someone with her this weekend.  :grouphug:  :grouphug:  :grouphug:

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And I just have to say....

 

I used to read stories like this online and think to myself, "Oh, well, if the courts ruled that way, then there MUST be more to the story!"

 

There is nothing more to this story.  This is just a travesty.  I have lost all faith in the courts. There is NO REASON for these kids to be removed from the only home they've ever known.  No reason.  This is just a cruel injustice to my nephew and nieces.

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And I just have to say....

 

I used to read stories like this online and think to myself, "Oh, well, if the courts ruled that way, then there MUST be more to the story!"

 

There is nothing more to this story.  This is just a travesty.  I have lost all faith in the courts. There is NO REASON for these kids to be removed from the only home they've ever known.  No reason.  This is just a cruel injustice to my nephew and nieces.

 

I used to think that too. 

 

Exposure to what courts can do to mothers and children is a real eye opener. 

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And I just have to say....

 

I used to read stories like this online and think to myself, "Oh, well, if the courts ruled that way, then there MUST be more to the story!"

 

There is nothing more to this story. This is just a travesty. I have lost all faith in the courts. There is NO REASON for these kids to be removed from the only home they've ever known. No reason. This is just a cruel injustice to my nephew and nieces.

One of the hardest things has been to see the comments my friend has to deal with to that effect-that there has to be more to the story. No, it doesn't. Good moms really do lose custody for superficial reasons, even when it seems like it would be a no-brainer for the kids to stay with them or at least to have something closer to 50/50.

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How especially awful for whichever child(ren) was/were struggling with grades, they are going to think being taken away from their mother is their fault.

 

This story makes me want to cry. Shame on all the adults (dad, girlfriend, lawyer, judge) who will harm children in order to forward their own agendas.

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How especially awful for whichever child(ren) was/were struggling with grades, they are going to think being taken away from their mother is their fault.

 

This story makes me want to cry. Shame on all the adults (dad, girlfriend, lawyer, judge) who will harm children in order to forward their own agendas.

 

x a million. 

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This is criminal. I have no words. I'm glad your sister has you to be there for her. What a nightmare, all around. Those poor children.

 

So what if their grades are even worse? What, foster care??? Is the judge INSANE????? To uproot children over slipping grades????

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Judges have their own biases. They don't have to be insane, or even corrupt, they just need to lack insight into their own biases. I think judges are woefully ignorant of the way (not all) men can use family court to manipulate and punish ex-spouses, and particularly clueless when it comes to seeing through the superficial charm of a narcissist father. 

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Judges have their own biases. They don't have to be insane, or even corrupt, they just need to lack insight into their own biases. I think judges are woefully ignorant of the way (not all) men can use family court to manipulate and punish ex-spouses, and particularly clueless when it comes to seeing through the superficial charm of a narcissist father. 

 

Bingo.  You have hit the nail on the head.  He doesn't even really want the kids.  (He mostly ignores them.)  He wants to hurt my sister (because she is the one who left him years ago -- but not without good reason), and he is using the kids as pawns in his scheme.  Well, he succeeded.  He hurt her worse than anything else he could've done to her.

Edited by Kinsa
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It's maddening when everyone outside the system can see it so clearly, but inside the system ? Idk what the answer is. 

 

I have a couple of friends potentially in your sister's position over the few months. I really feel for you all. 

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And I just have to say....

 

I used to read stories like this online and think to myself, "Oh, well, if the courts ruled that way, then there MUST be more to the story!"

 

There is nothing more to this story.  This is just a travesty.  I have lost all faith in the courts. There is NO REASON for these kids to be removed from the only home they've ever known.  No reason.  This is just a cruel injustice to my nephew and nieces.

 

And a breach of their human rights. Article 25: (2) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance.

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She can, but there's a trial period first. And of course, it is gonna to cost (yet another) boatload of money.

 

At this point, ex-dufus-husband is talking about suing HER for child support.

 

Biting my tongue right now. I'm a Christian lady, after all.

Couldn't she appeal and have a stay granted in the meantime?

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I'm so sorry for your sister and her children. It's so heartbreaking when judges rule in a way that seems to completely defy logic and the best interest of the children. DH said that in his experience judges go against GAL recommendations about 10-15% of the time. I do wonder how much of it has to do with judges not having experience in family court as attorneys before getting to the bench. I know that in our area, a lot of judges are appointed from the state's attorney's office and fewer come from private practice. That's probably good for criminal court experience, but family court is a lot different.

 

I'm glad your sister won't be alone this weekend. I hope she's somehow able to get custody back soon and without too much emotional damage to the children.

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Did I mention that the children's father was arrested for child abuse in the past??? Against the now-16yo. He was an infant.

 

This is like a bad dream.

 

This is horrible!     Was it your sister who reported him or someone else?  

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This is horrible!     Was it your sister who reported him or someone else?  

 

My sister took the baby into the ER for bruises she found when she came home after leaving the ex alone with the baby.  The ER called the police.

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Maybe the kids should accidentally fail the rest of the school year.

 

This is the kind of thing that teens think of all by themselves--- part of the reason that most courts weigh heavily the input of teenagers. I said upthread that they are mobile, but it's more of a general thing. Teens have a lot more power they can exercise than little kids. Even teens who aren't manipulative by nature will figure out how to get what they want.

 

So sure. A betting person can read: Teens who did poorly in 2 classes sent to live with parent they don't want to live with. Doesn't take a genius to predict the next move. 

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Judges have their own biases. They don't have to be insane, or even corrupt, they just need to lack insight into their own biases. I think judges are woefully ignorant of the way (not all) men can use family court to manipulate and punish ex-spouses, and particularly clueless when it comes to seeing through the superficial charm of a narcissist father. 

 

Yep.

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So sure. A betting person can read: Teens who did poorly in 2 classes sent to live with parent they don't want to live with. Doesn't take a genius to predict the next move.

 

From the teen or the narcissist?

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And a breach of their human rights. Article 25: (2) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance.

 

I can't see how that applies if a court determines the father can provide better care than the mother.

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I can't see how that applies if a court determines the father can provide better care than the mother.

 

Obviously court orders trump anything written in the Declaration of Human Rights. The court orders are legally binding documents, the Dec. of Human Rights isn't.

 

Clearly, though, courts don't always make the correct decision. If you have the right qualifications, you can make up all sorts of nonsense and bad luck to the recipients of it. A court determining that one bod can provide better care than another bod doesn't mean it's actually true!

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In Virginia, court doesn't ask or take into account what the kids want at ANY age.

 

That sucks, but on the other hand, asking the children what they want isn't much of a check or measure. Even when they do ask the children, and they express a preference for one parent, it will be assumed that parent put them up to it. Then he or she is in strife for 'parental alienation.'

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Obviously court orders trump anything written in the Declaration of Human Rights. The court orders are legally binding documents, the Dec. of Human Rights isn't.

 

Clearly, though, courts don't always make the correct decision. If you have the right qualifications, you can make up all sorts of nonsense and bad luck to the recipients of it. A court determining that one bod can provide better care than another bod doesn't make it actually true!

 

My point is that a court decision where a judge believes he is ruling in the best interests of the child wouldn't violate the Dec. of Human Rights (assuming it was even taken seriously anywhere).  The Declaration doesn't give mothers special rights in custody hearings.

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My point is that a court decision where a judge believes he is ruling in the best interests of the child wouldn't violate the Dec. of Human Rights (assuming it was even taken seriously anywhere).  The Declaration doesn't give mothers special rights in custody hearings.

 

I know the declaration doesn't give mothers special rights in custody hearings.

 

Having custody transferred to one's abuser is a breach of that child's human rights no matter how I look at it. However, arguing the point here protects no one's children. The courts need to stop running as though co-parents are all reasonable people at heart, because those who are both reasonable at heart don't end up in court. They sort themselves out face to face or in mediation. It's the couples where one or both aren't reasonable at heart that end up in court. 

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