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Left holding the baby....

(40 Posts)
downtoearth Mon 15-Jun-15 11:21:49

AIBU to feel peed off the situation as follows
have been kinship carer to GD since the age of 4,she is now 161/2 and just completed last GCSE Friday and has now officially left school.
E has a friend also E who is 14 from a "difficult background" who has taken to running away /being thrown out of home social services and police have been involved for years and are aware of the issues,this has escalated into truancy due to bullying and mum has reported her missing twice in as many days without even attempting to look for her.
I became involved at 11.00pm Thursday eveningI was awoken by a telephone call from the local beat officer (My E knows them from the community centre youth team where she volunteers ,and is hoping to work on an apprenticeship) could I have her stay as a place of safety, s/s visited next day and arrangements where made for her to stay until a placement was sorted out,things have unravelled and my is resenting sharing her room and having to spend time with this friend and having her life curtailed,I have asked for this to be sorted today and guess who is being made to feel like the bad guy.poor girl started her work experience to day,have had to spend all day Saturday finding clothes for her suitable to wear ,her work placement is in a nursery which only works half days ,so I am keeping playschool hours and back to pick her up 3 hours later 25mile round trip,and have just had a call from the playgroup leader E has been sick and feels wobbly now I have to go and collect a sick child as well,have had to cancel my work commitments and curtail my activites and I am absolutely positive if I hadn't kicked up a fuss today I would still be waiting for a suitable placement this time next month....I feel really angry that I have been put in this position,I am a kinship carer not a foster carer I get residency payments for my E feel like they want 2 for the price of one....cant think of an appropriate smiley don't think there is one...

downtoearth Tue 16-Jun-15 15:59:16

nightowl bruises were caused by mum who has done before,but covers it up as she dosent S/W involved as she is a teaching assistant and may lose her job,this has come from child but S/W is aware of this.what she is doing about this I am unaware as obviously I am not on a need to know basis,there may be other things I don't know about,these are questions that need to be asked but what weight would I carry,and although I am now in the awful position of knowing it seems that there is a whole can of worms waiting to explode,and I am the person opening the tin re social worker and family...

jollyg Tue 16-Jun-15 16:21:11

And if the girl died of far more serious injuries?

How would you feel then?

By your actions at present you are being complicit in covering up.

Mishap Tue 16-Jun-15 17:35:21

If these bruises are being ignored and glossed over as part of the "normal" functioning of the family it is entirely disgraceful. There is indeed a child protection issue here.

I think your plan of action is good - today is Tuesday and there is time to find a proper placement before Friday is you make enough noise. To be honest I would contact the lot all in one go - SW, line manager, SSD director, MP, local councillor - or one or other will just drag their feet.

Leaving this young lass with you to begin to establish a relationship (both ways) is cruel when you and SSD know that it cannot continue. They are playing on your and her emotions - it is quite wrong. You have to kick ass and do it now!

nightowl Tue 16-Jun-15 18:03:03

downtoearth that is shocking, and I'm sorry if I gave the impression I thought it was your responsibility to sort out the bruises as well - you have more than enough on your plate. I agree with Mishap - contact everybody and don't omit to mention your concern about the bruises. It is doubly worrying that the girl's mum is a teaching assistant as this would have to be taken into account. I'm sorry if that puts her job at risk but is someone who regularly bruises her own child really a suitable person to be in that role?

Jollyg I don't think downtoearth is covering anything up; it seems the S/W is aware of the bruises but nothing is being done about them.

downtoearth Wed 17-Jun-15 09:58:47

we have some movement,S/W contacted me late afternoon,yesterday but she is adamant that E is going home,and E is happy about this ,she will be returned to mum,who will be monitored and supported in her relationship with her daughter,obviously I am only told what I need to know and am unable to insist on more information,I guess I have also not be given complete situation.It appears that these blow ups occur monthly when mum and daughter both have period/pmt at same time BOTH are volatile personalities,I have learned that E hits mum and mum restrains and the bruises are restraint bruises,E also hits her brothers and sisters,E has admitted this to be true.It appears that the family struggle financially no more than the rest of us and some of this is a deeply unhappy child wishing to gain attention,they have a family support worker,and also E has a key worker so does appear that they are not under the radar of those able to whistle blow.I have got caught up in this tense situation without full facts and have responded to the immediate drama and safety of the child as you would in this situation.I have assured E now that we have established a relationship that she has my contact number,I will act as a safe haven for the night if she needs respite but it will be only for a night,unless I believe her to be at risk/danger then obviously S/W will be contacted immediately as I have her and office contact details,if any evidence of bruising I will photograph it and call police immediately,I will also contact E on a weekly basis,have round for a meal etc as my E's friend and keep an eye on situation. E is being given money by S/S to choose paint etc for her room so that she can take back some control in her life,she will also be given some money to choose some clothing etc for herself,I feel satisfied that this is being dealt with at that the child is safe,and will have a safe haven and protection by me as a responsible adult.

downtoearth Wed 17-Jun-15 10:02:47

Beyond that I don't know what else I can do ...

whenim64 Wed 17-Jun-15 10:38:01

That's all sounding sensible and reassuring, downtoearth. How considerate of you to offer a bolthole for emergencies.

Ana Wed 17-Jun-15 10:38:30

I'm glad the SW contacted you and put you in the picture, downtoearth. It does sound as though the girl in question and her family are well known and under supervision, they must think it's OK for her to go back home.

I think you're taking a lot on, offering to have this child overnight in the future and having so much contact with her. I fear both she and her mother (and indeed SS) might take advantage of your kind-heartedness...

Mishap Wed 17-Jun-15 10:48:11

I think you are right Ana - a lass with such a disorganised life is unlikely to have any concept of boundaries, so there may be times in the future when, once again, you will have to make sure that you put your family first. Well done for all that you have done in the last few days.

nightowl Wed 17-Jun-15 20:34:22

You are a very kind and generous person downtoearth, but then we already knew that smile

They are all very lucky to have you.

loopylou Wed 17-Jun-15 21:12:48

downtoearth, you are exceptionally generous and big hearted, flowers
I hope that I might be so in such circumstances x

downtoearth Thu 18-Jun-15 08:42:56

thank you all for lovely comments and support...just to add a final touch to the story,E has been completing her work experience completely by coincidence at the nursery where my youngest adoptive GC attends they have formed a connection,I look after little A 12 hours on Saturdays,and other minor babysitting,I have suggested that E accompany us to the park/picnics on some Saturdays so that I can observe unobtrusively,and if concerned will contact S/W,I have made it clear a stay is settee only for one night,then home in morning,I would rather that than have a phone call in the night again from police,I will feel more in control,she will also of course come by invite to have dinner with my E as and when....lets hope for peace and quiet for a while ....sunshine

downtoearth Thu 18-Jun-15 08:53:30

and just a final word I have insisted that mum dosent meet me or know my address,tha way both of our anonymity is protected and mum dosent feel emabarrassed if she where to bump into me...we live in a village which is a longish trek so fear of turning up unexpectedly is remote as we have to taxi my E back and forth by car...will pick little E up in a near her home supermarket car park...

jollyg Thu 18-Jun-15 19:40:15


As there seems to be a medical issue here PMT,

Have S/S thought of seeking medical advice, for both, of course Drs have a duty of confidentiality , and that would not impinge on Mums job with kids.

Just a little thought.

Glad you have progressed