Parenting teens and taking on foster care, will this work?
I havent been to court before, but my kids next court date is on Monday the 13th. We find out if the boys will be going to their grandmothers house or if they will be starting weekends, or what other plan they have.Since no one is telling us anything I feel that it is in the best interest of myself and my husband to go to be able to find out exactly what is going on, maybe some of our questions will be answered, questions that no one seems to have the answers to. Maybe no one really knows the answers but I believe that people are intentionally omitting some key things that are going on with the case. Sometimes we have to be our own investigators!I also think that if the case is becoming volatile, then safety comes first. It is up to you how comfortable you are with possibly going. Also if the workers involved in the case are really good about giving you updates, keeping you informed, and willing to provide honest answers to your questions, then maybe you dont need to go.
I always go to court. I feel like that is the only way I will 100% know what went on and what all was said. Also, I like to be there on the off chance somebody has a question for me. So far that hasn't happened, but you never know! :)
I always try to go - I can't always make it, usually on account of social workers who don't think I need to be notified, but I snoop out the info anyway. I like going for a few reasons. A - it shows I'm interested in the case and hopefully the kids' well being. B - I usually get to hear stuff I wouldn't ordinarily get to hear. because I'm there I'll be privy to whatever is said during the actual hearing, but also by being present I'll hear what everyone is saying to each other. Usually the parents or caseworkers or CASA won't excuse themselves before talking about an intimate detail of the case while I'm standing there. Occasionally an attorney will do that, as they should, but sometimes I get to hear that too. C - I get to see what family shows up. This gives you a clue as to who is really trying to be involved in the case. If they are there, I usually get to talk to them. This is always beneficial. Either I get ignored when I introduce myself or I get to talk to them. Usually I try to encourage them about how their kids are and give them details. I usually give them my foster care email address then and tell them they can contact me that way "when they're worried about their kids". This has gone a LONG way in my cases. I also get the opportunity to encourage them in their journey. I tell them my story and that of my parents who by the grace of God never had their kids taken away but surely could have and how all these years later their positive choices have had resounding impact. I explain to them that they too can do it. In cases where it's looking like TPR, I can explain how much I love their kids, what our family is like, and how much we'd be willing to be there for their kids forever. On a completely selfish note, I also like being there to hear all the OTHER cases too. It's like reading a trashy magazine or watching TMZ, except these are real people. I've even had a chance before to encourage a mom who's kids were in foster care completely unrelated to my case. And I got to hear all about one case where the person involved was essentially being accused of baby brokering. Yeah. Stuff like that.
When we were licensed in the midwest, I didn't attend court. I was more naive then. But, we got all the paperwork sent to us and our workers kept us in the loop.In Texas, at least where we are at, the children are REQUIRED to attend every hearing. That means I'm there whether I want to be or not.I do agree with Mie, attending court gives you the best idea of what is really going on with the case. I learn a lot by eavesdropping!!Given the choice, I think I would attend court. It's the best way to know what is really going on. In my own personal experience - I just wish the kids didn't have to go!! Little ones just shouldn't be exposed to that environment!! But, court is where we'll be on Monday. I'll have two hungry, tired and very confused little children sitting on my lap listening to all the dirty laundry being aired out.