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Question
Posted by: Beyond Tired | 2010/09/10

Custody of my Kids

Hi CS,
Thanks for the help and to the others that responded. I was told today that in October it is basically a formality that they will be placing my children in foster care with my sister, it is for a period of 2 years. Now I do not really know what to do, they are my babies, I brought them into the world, no one else. Yes, I have made mistakes, but heavens not that many. Does the fact that I am bi-polar and have suicidal tendencies play a role CS? Can they decide not to give my kids back on the grounds that I am bi-polar?
I don''t know if I want to carry on without my kids, all I was living for was them and now what?
The new guy in my life that I am not sure of, he thinks that if he is in my life the kids will be given to me because he offers stability, but I disagree.
You know CS, I fought the ex so hard so that I wouldn''t loose my kids, keeping him at bay, yes he did terrible things but so did I, he often ended up sleeping in the veld and in terrible places, without food, having no real shelter and very barely a blanket, only keeping the bare essentials with him and when he had been sober for 5 months and was coming right, he gets killed. Why was I so determined if in the end I loose them anyway.
My heart feels as if it has been smashed into little pieces and it just ain''t worthit to pick up the pieces. I just want to go asleep never to wake up again.
CS what must I do?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

I'm not sure what the strictly legal position is, the extent to which the authorities can discriminate on the basis of an illness such as Bipolar - but I'd guess their over-riding responsibility is to consider what seems best for the children, and a mother who is considered at risk of suicide attempts or other unstable behaviour, may be seen as a potential risk to them.
On the other hand, if this decision is made for a 2 year-period, and you continue to have access to them, you could establish a 20year record of stability, with NO suicide attempts or other major instabilities, which would make it much harder for them to renew that decision next time round. Be very cautious not to react, in despair, this time round, to such a decision, in dramatic ways that might convince them they were right to so decide, and make them reluctabnt to change their mind.
Continue to live for them ( that doesn't require you to always be living WITH them ) and prepare to have the decision changed, by demonstrating your continued stability and sense.
If you disagree with their apparent decision, don't create a drama that will convince them they're right - live well so as to convince them they were wrong.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Just my opinion | 2010/09/10

There are so many women - and fathers for that matter, that land up these days killing their own kids and themselves because of severe depression. We read it in the papers every day. I think because of that, social workers and the welfare might feel that the kids are better off with your sister.
AND maby all in all it''s a good thing, even though you don''t think so right now, because you will have time to sort yourself out, to get healthy again and get yourself back on track.
Obviously you''ll be able to see your kids, your sister won''t keep them away from you?
Maby take the time to concentrate on yourself right now.

I too live for my kids, and I am bipolar, but that does not make me a bad mother. In fact, I''m always praised by my ex-in laws about how well I raise my kids. They are both top students at school, my daughter of 12 has just been chosen as head-girl for next year (grade 7), both my kids do great in sports as well.

You just need to get the bipolar under control, get the right medication and you can continue your life as a normal person. Prove yourself in the following two years and you''ll have your kids back.

Reply to Just my opinion
Posted by: cybershrink | 2010/09/10

I'm not sure what the strictly legal position is, the extent to which the authorities can discriminate on the basis of an illness such as Bipolar - but I'd guess their over-riding responsibility is to consider what seems best for the children, and a mother who is considered at risk of suicide attempts or other unstable behaviour, may be seen as a potential risk to them.
On the other hand, if this decision is made for a 2 year-period, and you continue to have access to them, you could establish a 20year record of stability, with NO suicide attempts or other major instabilities, which would make it much harder for them to renew that decision next time round. Be very cautious not to react, in despair, this time round, to such a decision, in dramatic ways that might convince them they were right to so decide, and make them reluctabnt to change their mind.
Continue to live for them ( that doesn't require you to always be living WITH them ) and prepare to have the decision changed, by demonstrating your continued stability and sense.
If you disagree with their apparent decision, don't create a drama that will convince them they're right - live well so as to convince them they were wrong.

Reply to cybershrink

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