What you allow is what will continue. 

Sunday my son had a visit with his father.  At the drop off, my son was showing increased fear towards the man who fathered him and it took longer than usual to get him comfortable with staying.  The visits are still supervised, although the supervisor doesn’t take it seriously and typically stays inside and leaves Justin and my baby outside.  

At the drop off, that took 20 minutes, justin became very angry with me.  Our son was scared and didn’t want me to leave, so I was trying to build his confidence, and was helping him pick out rocks and put them in his pocket.  On the third rock, I handed it to the 18 month old and told him, “why don’t you go show it to him?” And pointed at Justin.  Justin flipped out because I didn’t refer to him as “daddy”.  He tried to verbally abuse me for a while, but got no reaction from me.  

The supervisor eventually came outside and our son went to her, so I was able to leave.  When I returned 40 minutes later, I could hear my son screaming for me from the back yard.  It has been months since he’s done that.  Justin met me halfway to the backyard and was acting very strange.  The baby was gasping for breath, and was visibly upset.  Justin told me “he’s been very cranky” and I didn’t think much about it since we have both been sick.  

I discovered, the following day, the reason for my son’s distress.  

I have seen Justin take out his anger on his other child when the other mother didn’t go along with his abuse too.  


He only sees this baby for an hour at a time, and he cannot be trusted to protect him for that hour?  Why would anyone ever let him have this child for longer than that? And unsupervised?  

According to Erickson’s 8 Fundamental stages of development, young children need to go through the trust and attachment stage so they can develop a trust for their caregivers.  This will serve them well in the future if they complete this phase.  Why doesn’t anyone listen? 

Importance of Note-keeping

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I’m hoping that someone will read this and it will help them in their journey as well.  I have started doing this for my record keeping, when it comes to various things, but most importantly, my son’s visitation with his abusive father.  I’ve alluded to the fact that I have to mark the diapers, and photograph them, because he refuses to change them.  I also take notes of this too.  I am ordered by the court to provide food for the child, as his father typically schedules visits during what a reasonable person would consider “dinner time.”  I don’t mind doing this, other than the fact, often times, my son’s father will eat the food.  He has instructed me to bring certain foods, because “he” likes them, not referring to my son.  I have been asked to bring steak for dinner.

I would like to point out, I am not ordered to provide a meal for Justin.  I am only required to provide foods for the child, as his father has NO idea what to feed him.  For example, during the two months he had unsupervised visits, he would take my son during dinner time, and offer him an uncooked, unpeeled carrot.  My son was 8 months old, still in a rear facing car seat, and had 4 teeth.  I hope that I’m not being unreasonable when I identify the severe choking hazard this brings about.

The type of father we are dealing with is also the type to withhold food as a disciplinary tactic from his children (I have personally witnessed this, and it’s more than just snacks or dessert).  He is also the type of person who will beat a child for not eating all of their food, or for gagging after he force feeds them.  I have personally witnessed all of these behaviors.

Anyways, I thought I would take a moment to document for you how much effort I go into documentation.  I have often times wanted to give up.  Often times, I have thought about stopping, because no one will read it.  However, I have support from close friends and family who encourage me to continue it in hopes that one day someone will read the documentation and actually help me.  One day someone will help my son.

This documentation started way before I ever had my son.  I won’t post everything here, but I will post what I have been using for the last several months to document the supervised visits between my son and his father.

Feb 2017 Inked2017-06-26 12.27.39_LI_Redacted This is a link to the documentation for the Month of February.  As you will note, we had a new court order that began supervised visits on February 3, 2017.  He was able to see the child for a total of an hour and a half the entire month.

march 2017 2017-06-26 12.27.50_Redacted This is a link to the documentation for the month of March.  He was able to see the child for a total of an hour and a half for the entire month.  We received a new court order on March 31, 2017 that indefinitely suspended his unsupervised visits because he was not following the court order.

April 2017-06-26 12.27.58_Redacted  This is a link to the documentation for the month of April.  He started spending over an hour per week with our son, because of the newest court order.  Please note the times he is scheduling visits, the fact that he has not changed diapers, and the fact that he’s not feeding the child.  I bring food, and he will give it back upon my return completely untouched.  Often times, my son is begging for “juice” when I get there, but he has not been given a drink and is incredibly thirsty.

May 2017-06-26 12.28.09_Redacted  This is a link to the documentation for the month of May.  Still spending 1-2 hours per week, not changing diapers, and not feeding the child.

June 2017_Redacted  This is the most recent documentation for the month of June.  We were supposed to return back to the case manager in early June, but I have heard nothing about scheduling, so we continue on in the current court order.  Thankfully, because the hot weather, the refusal to change and feed him, and the denial of drinks for the child, it’s best that he’s only away from me for an hour at a time.

The last two weeks, Justin has started climbing in my vehicle upon my arrival to collect our son.  This is inappropriate, and unnecessary.  He has told me previously that he’s thought about strangling the mother of his other child in this manner, and it makes me incredibly uneasy.  I’m sure that is his intention.  I have started standing on the outside of my car so that he cannot strangle me.

Dancing with the devil

I recently came across a quote that I believe to be incredibly accurate. “Don’t continue dancing with the devil and expect to get out of hell.”  Unfortunately, in my case, the court system is forcing the dance to continue, long after the song has ended. 

At the last visit, Justin decided a few hours in advance to try to schedule something.  Gone are the days where he was making an attempt at notifying me 24 hours in advance, and he thinks he can just schedule as he pleases.  My work schedule has never changed. It is not flexible. I work a typical office job, 8-5 Monday through Friday.  Last Friday, he decides that he is going to slam a visit together quickly as he’d forgotten to schedule one all week.  He failed to give me adequate notice, and there is no way at 10:30 in the morning I can ask my employer for half a day off work because he wants a one hour visit.  

I’ve asked him so many times in the past to please give proper notice so I can request time off, which he refuses to do.  So, after he tells me that my alternative time is unacceptable to his schedule, a few hours pass and he then decides that he will accept the alternate time.  This is after I already tell my mom (who watches my son during the day) that it was ok to take him on a short road trip, as Justin would not be seeing him that evening.  


My mom had just taken my son to the doctor that morning.  He was sick because Justin had scheduled a visit with a supervisor who had sick children in her home.  

He is trying anything to get a reaction out of me, and it’s simply not working to his benefit.  I refuse to stoop to his level. I will not engage him in an argument. 

This behavior has continued to set up the next visit that we will have today.  He refuses to listen to logic, and it is apparent that he has alternative reasons for not wanting to schedule a time that is best for the child. 


As you will note, he likes to text when he knows I’m busy (during work hours) or late at night in hopes that I don’t respond right away.  He has used this to tell our case manager that I am non responsive, or slow to respond in an attempt to get me in trouble with the court.  

My son’s therapist agrees that the times being scheduled should be around the child’s schedule.  She is willing to write a letter to the case manager to make this suggestion.  


I don’t hear a response back until this morning, completely ignoring the fact that the child is ill.  I had to text the supervisor, because she is a reasonable person, and explain that 1:00 was right in the middle of nap time for the child and she agreed that later in the day would work better for her anyways.  


This goes to show that he doesn’t like me also trying to contact the supervisor, when I have every right to contact her regarding a visit.  There is nothing in the current paperwork that states he is responsible, because the paperwork issued in February 2017, put him in charge of it and he was unable to meet that requirement.  The current paperwork that was issued March 31, 2017 states that both parties are to take on the responsibilities of making the visits work.  

Again, I’m not trying to be difficult, im doing what is in the best interests of the child.  I’m not denying the visit, I’m trying to work around the child’s schedule when his father doesn’t want to devote much time to being a father.

Speaking of being a father, as you know by now I mark the diapers because I need proof he never changes them.  With the hot weather, it’s even more important than ever to keep the child clean under the diaper.  The last visit, he wasn’t changed, and I’ve been fixing the diaper rash that occurred over the last few days. It’s almost healed today, just in time for another visit. 


It’s terribly unfortunate that a child has to suffer, with blisters in sensitive areas, because his father is too ignorant and lazy to change a diaper.  It takes less than a minute, on average, and it’s really not that hard to do.

Grey Rock and new supply

I have spoken with several members from other law enforcement agencies since the “gun” incident, and I have been told that the officer I spoke with *should* have written a report.  I was told yesterday by a deputy in another agency that failure to write a report, when requested by a person making police contact, could result in disciplinary action, and that it is the responsibility of the officers to help keep people safe.  Obviously, this isn’t what happened in my case.

I finally got an updated address “letter” from my son’s father.  2017-06-06 21.27.54.pngThis is after I had to remind him that he had never sent it to me, after I had sent him a letter.  Again, as you will notice, I even offered to cut my vacation short, to accommodate his schedule.  I didn’t hear anything back from him until Sunday afternoon demanding a visit.

While on vacation, he texted me and asked me to attend counseling with him (again).  I told him to have the therapist call me.  I have no intentions of attending anything with him, unless it is court ordered.  There is no reason for me to put myself into a situation to be further victimized by this individual.

After he had scheduled the visit on Sunday, after my vacation had wrapped up, he notified me a few hours prior to the visit that he was going on a float trip, and that it would interfere with his scheduled visit with our son.  As usual…. priorities.    2017-06-11 15.24.40.png

I have continued to mark the diapers during visits, and he has not changed any since the “poop” incident in April.  He verbally told me that he hadn’t called the case manager yet, and wanted to know if I would fight him on getting unsupervised visits.  This is after he left a supervised visit with the child, I caught him coming back before he thought I would be there.  He also kept the baby out in 91* weather, for the entire visit (thankfully, only an hour long) and returned him to me with a soiled diaper and heat/diaper rash.

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My attorney suggested that I file a PFA on Katie, however I chose not to, as I don’t want to risk losing supervised visits.  Those are much more important to me, and the safety of my child, than keeping a “new supply” for him away.

At the most recent visit, I discovered that he makes me bring the baby to him in the supervisor’s garage for a reason.  I figured this was the case, however, I now know why.  On top of the blue tote, is a gun.  The gun has been there the last two visits (probably more, but that’s when I noticed it).  He makes it a point to stand in front of the blue tote, so he is within close proximity and accessibility of the fire arm each time I am there.    This is just another attempt at trying to get me to react, and to intimidate me into complying with him.  My son is also tall enough to be able to reach the firearm easily, and I know that the supervisor is not actually supervising anything.  With sometimes up to three other children in the home at the same time as the visits, under the age of 6, someone is going to get hurt, eventually.  I just hope its not when my son is there.  2017-06-18 17.31.10.jpg

He continues to jerk me around when scheduling visits, and is now still only seeing the baby once or twice a week for an hour each time.  He will schedule, then move and change and reschedule, and never once asks me if it will work for my schedule.  On Father’s Day, I had to encourage him to actually spend an hour with the child, because he shortened the time to 30 minutes.

He is still continuing to hose my son off each time I show up to pick him up.  To the point the baby is soaking wet when I put him in his car seat.  It was mentioned to me that his reasoning for doing this could be that he is trying to conceal an odor that is on his clothes.  I cannot prove this.  I took this picture for proof that he is hosing him down.  2017-06-11 19.07.36 HDR.jpg

Often it takes two days for the carseat to dry out, and I have a rotation of three pairs of shoes, because they will be so wet when I get the baby back that they do not dry out by the time the next visit is scheduled.

At one recent visit, he asked if the baby was still nursing. I told him that he still nurses at night, so he bent down and told our child to bite mommy really hard.  Abusers do this with children of all ages!  They use the child to further victimize.  The following day, my son bit me so hard it drew blood on my hand.  Even though he is only 18 months old, he knows what is going on around him.  

We still have not gone back to see the case manager, and I would rather keep this current arrangement than have any more time with this man and my son.  Nothing is perfect, but at least this is the best I can do.

I recently joined a support group for victims of domestic violence.  They have taught me the “gray rock method.”  I didn’t know it, but I have been doing this for months, just without knowing it.  Basically, the object is to make yourself so boring, that the narcissist loses interest, and will eventually need the drama from a “new supply.”  His new supply is his current girlfriend, and he almost leaves me alone.  He is asking me to attend therapy, while living with this other girl, as a means to get a reaction out of me, and to try to further control and capitalize upon my time.  These abusers are master manipulators, and I’m not sure that he will ever change.  I can only hope that I can protect and shield my child enough that he won’t fall victim to much of his father’s aggression.

 

“To serve and protect..”?

Today, at the one hour visit Justin scheduled, he brought his girlfriend.  This is the same one who has threatened my life previously.  She dropped Justin off and drove away, and after leaving the baby, I drove away also.  Apparently, her mother lives very close to the new location for Justin to have the visits.  Unbeknownst to me, as she had left about 4-5 minutes prior to me, she went to her mothers home.  I drove past, and she was out in the yard.  Upon seeing my car, she started yelling and flipping me off.  Since documentation is so important, or that’s what everyone says, I turned around to get a recording of her hostile, immature actions.  She had already retreated into the house by this time but sent me the following message:


I went to the police station and asked for someone to escort me back to get my son.  I was told that the police don’t get involved in civil incidents and no one would be available to help.  I asked about having a report written, for documentation, and I was told to have a seat and an officer would come speak to me.

After 15 minutes, I had not been seen by an officer and I had to leave to go pick up my son.  On my way there, I called the Safe Hope Domestic Violence center based out of my county (the same one who has never been helpful prior) and was told that on Monday they could help me file a PFA against this individual.  Today is Sunday, and doesn’t help me get my son back.  I explained to both the officer at the station and to the girl who answered the phone that Justin always has guns in his truck.

I arrived to pick my son up, and his father had him outside across the street from the supervisors home, with the girlfriend.  Upon seeing me, Justin ran back inside and took the baby with him.  I waited until exactly the time specified by him and got my recorder out and walked to the house to collect my son.  After getting him back, I walked to my car and asked Katie if she didn’t want to cause a scene now?  She said she knew I was recording so he had nothing to say.  I told her I was recording, because I couldn’t trust either of them and I knew there were weapons in the vehicle.  She went on to tell me I could come look after strapping my son in.  I told her I would not be lured over to the vehicle like that.  She then waited until I turned my back and was strapping my son in to say “it’s ok babe, I’ve got guns in the truck.”  Here is a video recording of the altercation: Evidence 6/4/17 Katie threatening with guns

I went back to the police station. And asked again to have it documented.  I was told by Officer R*** that “we don’t help with documentation for court” and he refused to write a report. He told me nothing criminal had happened and that I just needed to calm down.  We went on further to say that I was instigating her by trying to record her.  I explained to this officer that I understood that the burden of proof was on me, and I was trying to get the documentation that was required.  I told this officer that she had previously threatened to stab me in the throat, and he told me “well you’re lucky that she didn’t.”  I informed the officer that there was prior domestic violence and he told me that we can’t hold past offenses over someone’s head for life.  I was told that because I went back, to get the documentation they require for anything to happen, I was being the aggressor.  I thanked the officer for his time and told him I’m sure I would be back, as he didn’t know what these individuals were capable of.  He told me “I hope you don’t think I’m being an ass, but you need to calm down.”  The officer then asked how Justin was with the baby.  I said, he’s an abusive individual.  He told me “I didn’t ask how he was towards you, I asked how he was with the baby.  Your kid is fine.   There’s nothing to report here.  Nothing illegal happened.  People have guns everywhere, that’s not illegal.”

Justin has been convicted of battery with a weapon, three charges.  He got his conceal and carry license revoked, and since he was convicted of domestic violence, he is not supposed to legally own guns.

These people are supposed to help keep people safe?  It’s marked on their cars “to serve and protect”.  My tax dollars are paying the salary of these people who say that I need to calm down when I’m being threatened with a gun?  He told me to come back when something happened but there was nothing they could do before then.

The system is broken.  At every level.

Helping hands

Since I’ve had NO luck with my local victims advocate, I stumbled upon a wonderful woman at a booth on a main street event at a small town out of county.  She listened to my story, and I pled to her for some help.  She assured me that the “right” person to talk to was her boss, because she knew Harvey county even though they were based out of a different county.  She told me that he boss was currently at a conference, but to call on Tuesday of the following week and they would help.  She told me that what the court is doing to me is horrendous and I should not be at my abuser’s beck and call.  I shouldn’t be forced to deliver a baby to someone with a gun who has had prior convictions of assault with a weapon.  She gave me this phamplet and hand wrote the contact information I needed on it. 


I waited until Tuesday.  And I called this miracle worker, Lisa.  I was told she couldn’t come to the phone but would call me back if I left a “safe” number for her to call back.  

That was 4 weeks ago.  I’m still waiting, Lisa.