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My sister is unfit to care for her kids!! (long)

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Old 06-19-2011, 10:49 PM   #1
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Default My sister is unfit to care for her kids!! (long)

My sister and I have had a rough life. Abusive, bipolar, drug addicted mother, abusive or deadbeat dads... The thing is, I came out fairly ok. I saw what went on and refused to let myself become it. My sister fell into the same lifestyle though. She got pregnant at 16 and dropped out of school. I was 20 and living on my own at the time and tried to get custody of her from our mom, but it didn't happen. Our mom pretty much played CPS like a piano and would show a good face while they were there but would neglect and abuse my sister the rest of the time. Eventually, my sister got into drugs and illegal activities and lost custody of her first child to his father. She got pregnant again not long after, and continued drinking and drug use into her pregnancy. Her daughter is special needs. She got pregnant again, and cleaned her act up somewhat. She got married (he isn't the father) and had the baby. She was diagnosed as bipolar as well as having some form of psychosis. She sometimes doesn't take her medication and has complete breakdowns over things like the Holocaust or other things that have no bearing on her. Last year she told me that sometimes she thinks people are breaking into her house and she is always scared the house is going to burn down. She has exit signs up all over her house and reads books about the Holocaust and other things to make sure her kids "don't forget how awful those things were." The kids still with her are 7 and 4 and totally out of control. She told me she locks them in their room at night because they get into things. Sometimes though, my sister doesn't get up until late and the kids stay locked in there. They are also locked in there if my sister and her husband just don't want to deal with them. My sister tells me she just can't handle them.

I've been supportive and have even bought her girls clothes and care items. I've talked to her about parenting and doing the right thing, but I can only do so much. I live 8 hours away, but we talked every day and she regularly visited our grandparents. About a month ago, she suddenly stopped calling and her phone was shut off. My grandmother said she's been staying with them and our uncle and they were concerned because my sister was keeping her oldest daughter out of school. Out of the blue, my sister left and stopped talking to my grandparents. A cousin of ours lives with my sister, and yesterday totally dropped a bomb on all of us.

It turns out, when she stayed with my grandparents, it was because her electric was cut off. When she went back, she continued to live without electricity AND running water, since their water pump was electric. 3 weeks she went without it. My cousin said my sister is abusing pills and isn't taking her medication. My cousin was actually in the process of moving out, saying she can't live with my sister anymore. She's having violent outbursts, punching and hitting walls and the dashboard of her car. They just recently got the electric turned back on and are on some kind of payment plan with it, however, they are months and months behind on rent and are facing eviction soon. The most disturbing part is that my sister told her son's father she can't do visitation with him right now. This is something she woudl NEVER have done before. Her son's father told my grandma he thinks something is going on.

My family and I have had no direct contact with her for weeks now. She has no phone or internet and refuses to see anyone. I'm worried about her and the kids, but mostly about the kids.

Tomorrow morning I am calling CPS in their county to make sure they are ok. I'm just worried that they won't do anything, much like they did when I was a kid and when my sister was 16. This whole thing has me furious and upset for a multitude of reasons. Mainly because her kids are suffering. I am trying to get a plan together and figure out if we can take them in if they are removed from the home. It would be difficult to take on 2 more kids (we have a 6y/o and a 3y/o already) but it IS doable for us. And honestly, if it means helping them until my sister gets herself together, I would love to. The whole thing is just terrible.
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Old 06-19-2011, 11:01 PM   #2
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Thats great you care about the kids that much. It's a bold move to do what your doing but someone has to do it. Ive seen too many kids caught in the crossfire because others didnt want to "stir things up" with the parents. Then to take those kids in your home is just amazing. It's hard on a kid being sent into foster care where they dont know anyone and they dont know their real family anymore. stay strong.

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Old 06-19-2011, 11:12 PM   #3
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My brother and I had to raise our younger brother's kids 10 years ago...me, our nephew and him our niece....after our little brother passed away. Our sil is bi-polar and other issues.

It was the right thing to do....however not easy. I raised our nephew who did pretty good and is now beginning his 3rd year in the NAVY.

Our niece on the other hand caused so much trouble that after 9 years my brother had no choice (for the sanity of his own family) but to allow our niece to go back with her mom (who is actually better now)...

but so far that isn't looking too good...

good luck and prayers for you and those kids!
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Old 06-19-2011, 11:18 PM   #4
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Wow. Definitely sounds like a mess. I think you have the right idea though. Got to take care of those kids first! They certainly didnt ask to be put in the situation. I hope your sister can get the help that she needs...for her sake and her childrens. Good Luck!
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Old 06-19-2011, 11:23 PM   #5
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i'm sorry that you're dealing with this right now...

i work in the mental health field, and it sounds like your sister is decompensating, which could have serious consequences for her children. i can't imagine how hard it was for you to call CPS, but i think it needs to be done. maybe it will be the wake up call your sister needs to stop abusing (if she's doing that) and stay on her medications.

hope it all turns out well.
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Old 06-19-2011, 11:25 PM   #6
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EZMONEY, that's what I fear the most. Her kids have been through a lot and have serious behavioral problems, and they aren't sure, but they think the oldest girl has moderate to severe autism. (Which just lights the fire under my butt even more!) I have 2 children of my own who won't understand. The life my sister's kids lead is a foreign concept to my own kids, just as our life is a foreign concept to my sister's kids. They're young though, so I'm hoping early intervention will help heal them.
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Old 06-20-2011, 05:33 AM   #7
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So many things I could say.... or identify with.... the abuse, the drug/alcohol abuse....... but you get the pictures.

All I can say is: Try your best. Do what you can. But definitely, definitely report it to higher authorities and let their counselors advice you as to what you could and should do. Its their jobs, after all.

So sorry you have to go through it..... be strong.
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Old 06-20-2011, 08:44 AM   #8
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Call CPS get those poor kids out of that house and hopefully they never have to go back and deal with that. Just because kids are young doesn't mean they won't remember as they get older. Sometimes we suppress memories once we're removed from a horrible situation and may not recall what was the memory but still affect us certain ways as adults. Bringing in our insecurities, our issues and all sort of other problems that we can't figure out why we have them, because these memories we blacked out as a child. Good luck to you and hopefully those children can finally be some place good in the end of all of this.
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Old 06-20-2011, 09:39 AM   #9
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I know you are calling CPS - def do that! I hope the kids get what they need.

Hang in there -- so much to deal with!

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Old 06-20-2011, 12:19 PM   #10
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Call CPS and keep calling. Luckily, many places are slowly coming around and the "reunification at all costs" mentality is dying out.

If her children are removed (which seems likely) and you take them in with you- speak with CPS about financial assistance. In many places, relatives caring for children receive the same subsidy as non related foster parents.

Good for you for doing the right thing. My husband works at a group home for foster children (mainly teens) and I can't tell you how important it is for family members to speak up and intervene ASAP.
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Old 06-20-2011, 01:57 PM   #11
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My heart goes out to those children... You are doing the right thing for them.

I'm so sorry this is happening.
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Old 06-20-2011, 03:31 PM   #12
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a sad, sad situation for everyone. You are doing the best thing possible under the circumstances. Be strong and sending all good thoughts to you and your family.
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Old 06-20-2011, 03:45 PM   #13
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such a sad situation....glad you have the guts to call CPS...most people dont.
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Old 06-20-2011, 04:09 PM   #14
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Call CPS as many times as it takes until something is done.

People are SO GOOD at fooling them. I know my parents were and still are. It's saddening.
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Old 06-20-2011, 04:19 PM   #15
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CPS couldn't help because it was second hand info. I heard it from my cousin, so it isn't proof enough. I called the sheriff and asked them to do a welfare check. They went in and checked and called me after. They said my sister doesn't want anything to do with our family and told them to tell me to never contact her again. The sheriff said they will no longer do welfare checks at her house.

In a way I'm relieved. I'm hoping everything really WAS ok. I have a sick feeling that it isn't, and that I'm never going to see my sister or her kids again.

I've done what I can I suppose.
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