Wednesday, September 5, 2012

First Visits - Part 1

When it came to the first family visits for D and S , I had to resist the temptation to spout that "bad attitude" quote I used to have on my wall when I worked in an an office full-time. The one that said, "Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part."

They were separate visits, with separate people. Two visits for each child, one for mom and one for dad. The caseworker told me that each child would have a different supervising person, from separate agencies, because she wanted to keep the actual cases as separated as possible in order to prevent either family from successfully directing all blame to the other one. She also insisted to me that the visits should be scheduled at my convenience, not the parents', and that there was nothing I needed to do about visits until I heard from the visit supervisors about scheduling them.

So, I waited. The kids had been in my home for nearly a week when I finally heard from S's visit supervisor. I'll call her Ms F. Ms F called on a Thursday morning and asked if Saturday would be OK with us; I confessed that we had a family day planned that would make that hard, but we could cancel it if that was the only day that would work. (Clearly, I'm not very good at insisting on things being done "at my convenience.") Friday was out because S had pediatrician and dentist appointments scheduled. Ms F said we shouldn't have to cancel our family day and we scheduled S's visits for the next week on Tuesday.

I merrily sent off an email to the agency caseworker (I don't have any contact info for the county one), letting him know the date and time of her scheduled visit.

It set off a hailstorm of texts, emails and phone calls.

I'm sorry, but the law says they have to have a visit this week. Is there a reason they can't have a visit til next week?

A reason? Other than the combined facts that a) it's currently Thursday, b) the child has medical appointments on Friday, and c) you told me to schedule it at my convenience? Oh, and I still haven't heard from D's visit supervisor, by the way, so don't know how his visits could happen this week!

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