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PPD and CPS - BIG UPDATE post 156

post #1 of 164
Thread Starter 
I've been a member of MDC for a long time, and have posted here before. For this thread however I needed more anonymity so I created a new username.

Background:

My now ex BF and I have not been getting along well since the baby was born. His mother stays with us during the week to babysit, despite me not wanting her too. I do not get along with her.

What happened this week:

On Wednesday my ex BF, his mom, and I got into a huge fight. We fought a little, so I left the room and got on my computer to chill out (ex BF was playing with the baby). My BF followed me into the other room and started telling me that I don't do anything, that I'm like dealing with a 13yr old girl, that I shouldn't be taking leisure time while the baby is awake - that I should be doing laundry or dishes or cleaning something, that I'm immature, etc.

I did not respond to him. I was done talking to him. Then it came time for the baby (10mo) to go to sleep. He wanted to nurse to sleep, but I couldn't do it. I just could not nurse him to sleep. I needed my space. Well, that set ex BF off again. And his mother. Who said to me, "This conversation is between you and Will, but you really should think about this......etc." Then, I said, "I'm weaning the baby, weaning works by not nursing him. I'm weaning him, therefore ex BF can put him to bed" She responded, "I'm going to call CPS on you, you can't do that cold turkey"

I LOST it. I started yelling at her (she was holding the baby), I told her to get the HE!! out of my house, that I didn't ever want to see her again, I called her a *itch. It was bad. It hasn't happened that badly before. I have a temper, and when I'm my normal self (which is never going to happen again, my old self is GONE since this baby was born) I can control it. Right now though, I can't. I cannot deal with things. AT ALL.

Anyway, so fast forward to Thursday morning, I drop ex BF at school, then park the car. He comes to me a few hours later and says he needs the car keys so that he can get something out of the car.

What did he REALLY do? Took the baby to the dr (he's had a bad cold, which is now the flu) WITHOUT telling me!!!! And told the pediatrician what happened the night before (I'm sure making me look WAY worse than what actually happened), and the ped called CPS.

So the CPS person shows up last night (after I have spent the better part of 24hours crying b/c my life has gone to he!!), and I blew it with her too. I didn't sign releases so that she could call my dr's, I told her that if she was going to take my son away that she should just do it rather than drag it out. It feels like everything is working against me and my life is just a complete failure.

On wednesday I said a lot of things that I don't mean. Like, I wish I had an abortion (sometimes I do), I wish I gave up the baby, I don't want him, I hate being a mother, etc.

I can't undo it now. And now my ex BF is trying to take him away from me. I've been told that I can't be with my son alone. AT ALL. My ex BF says that he did this to force me to get the right help (I'm on meds, and I have a therapist but its not working) and that he wants joint custody eventually (right now we live together - we just broke up Wednesday night).

My life has been destroyed. I'm a law student. I'm never going to be admitted to the bar now. EVER. I can't imagine getting admitted to the bar with a CPS record. I was going to transfer schools after my first year and go back towards home, but then I was pregnant. I didn't get an abortion b/c my ex BF wanted me to keep the baby. I tore so badly after the birth that I was in sever, debilitating pain for 12 weeks after the birth. I'm not graduating on time b/c of the baby, I don't get to move home after school ends b/c of the baby (I live in NYC now, but I'm from Seattle).

What do I do now??? I hate my life. I don't like being a mother (I love my baby and I would never hurt him, but being a mother is too hard right now). I only have stressors in my life, and no stress relievers. I hate living in NYC, I hate all the crowds I hate all the noise. I'm so tired of all of this. I can't deal with it anymore. I just want to go home.

HELP!!! I'm heading over to FYT to see if anyone knows of some good ppd therapists in my area.

(so sorry this is so long, if you read the whole thing you are a saint)
post #2 of 164
I'm so sorry mama. I have no advice for you but I couldn't read and not reply.

(((((HUGS)))))
post #3 of 164
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post #4 of 164
It sounds like you have a lot of stress right now, and maybe it is better that the baby is being cared for by his dad at the moment. It sounds like you need a little time away.
post #5 of 164
that

s Stumbled on your post mama and just wanted to give you a little support. NYC is a hard city, babies are hard and so are mother-in-laws!

I really encourage you to seek professional support of some kind at this point. And, if I might suggest trying to reach out to the CPS person who you had the bad experience with, or her supervisor/office for a referral to a mental health professional, PPD counselor or similiar. They will be able to point you in the right direction, may know about free or sliding scale fee providers and will see that you really are willing to get help when necessary, which can only help your situation with them. I think you do need a little help right now, mama, said with love!!!!!

Good luck and keep us posted.
post #6 of 164
This sounds really tough. I am sorry.

With depression, things can often seem much worse than they are - a CPS visit will not cancel your career in law - if anything, you will be more understanding of the needs and background of your clients. Right now you need to take care of yourself - counseling, meds, more counseling. When the meds are right, and the therapist is right, you will feel so much better. Ask your current therapist, your doctor, your pediatrician for names of good PPD therapists.

You probably don't need to wean, just pump during the day and let the Dad take care of the baby.

Do you have a friend you can stay with, so you won't have to hang out with EX and his Mom? I think having his Mom in the home is a really bad idea.

Was he a nice person before things went bad? It is really possible that when you are feeling better, you will be able to resume a relationship with him. You have many parenting options for your future, including letting your EX be the primary parent, if that is your choice. But don't make a decision now, while you are depressed. The baby will be much more appealing to you, much more lovable, once you have your PPD under control or resolved.

Right now take care of yourself, let EX take care of the baby mostly, and get plenty of sleep. Things will get better
post #7 of 164
Sleep is SO important.

This place helped me immensely - they will talk with you as long as you need it and they have resources: http://www.postpartumny.org/ They're on LI, but I know they will help, if they can.

Depression makes everything worse. So, so much worse. Don't think about the future or the whatifs or any of that - focus on getting well.

s. hang in there - it will get better.
post #8 of 164


Let X-DP take the baby while you sort this out. And get your therapist involved to help you navigate this as well as a lawyer who can guide you on the legal aspect of the situation.

And maybe apologize to CPS for blowing up so you can build a bridge. They may be able to offer some assistance.

You are going to want to be involved in your child's life no matter how burned out you are right now. So keep that as your goal and do what you have to do to realize it.

V
post #9 of 164
I'm so sorry you're dealing with all this right now.

CPS does not exist soley to take kids away from their parents. Primarily, their job is to keep families together and assist parents in getting the help they need.

Your son is safe right now, with both Daddy and Grandma available to care for him. You need to take this time to get the help YOU need. If your therapist isn't helping, and your meds need to be adjusted, you may want to go check yourself into a hospital. CPS may be able to help with paying for the mental health care you need.

Getting yourself help is only going to help your CPS case. It will show that you're taking the initiative in getting yourself better, rather than waiting for them to "force you" into getting help.
post #10 of 164
Mama right now you have so many emotions going on I can see how tough it is for you. But honestly right now your first concern has to be your child. I understand that you may have feelings that they are *taking away* your child but honestly you need to ask yourself can you really take care of his emotional/physical needs on top of dealing with your depression. If not than it might be helpful to have your ex take him for awhile with the understanding that you are seeking help. I guess I can see both sides your overwhelming stress and his fear because of some of the things you have said against your child.

Secondly I would find myself immediately in my therapists office. If they are unwilling to help, than find another. Someone will help and listen. PPD is treatable. Please dont give up. Please talk to your therapist.

As for your relationship. Obviously all the above are stressers in it. Im not saying break up and never be with each other. Obviously something was *there* at some point. Maybe you can take some time away and figure things out for yourself. Get your PPD under control, figure out school and what your goals are. As for the CPS thing, I think that being proactive and showing your are seeking help with help.
post #11 of 164
Mama, you need help. Please be kind to yourself.
post #12 of 164
I'm so sorry

I think you need to call your social worker and explain that your bf and his mother had pretty much taken over the baby and with you feeling depressed and in a different city, you're very stressed. Tell her that you are in counseling and explain that your MIL's interferrence is hurting you as a mother and ask what you can do about it. Maybe there can be a daycare subsidy or some way for you to get her out of your life as much as possible. Interfering MIL's can be a huge stressor.

You were wrong to just try to wean the baby like that, but it's hard to function when you've got people breathing down your neck. You need to be able to trust your mothering and build confidence, not have confidence stolen from you.

Get your social worker working with you. Ask for help, tell her what the problem is and ask for advice.

Also, maybe you can go to couple's counseling and address the MIL issue. Don't be too hard on yourself. You were in a really bad situation, although it may not seem like it looking back. Lots of moms would have been thrown into depression.It sounds like all control was taken from you as soon as you got pregnant.

You will have some control again. You will be able to be a lawyer. You will get through this and you will love your child more than anything in the world. You need support and you haven't had that since you got pregnant. You were not just a vessel, bringing a baby to your boyfriend and his mother. This is your baby and your life is never going to be the same because you are the mother. Nobody can replace you.
post #13 of 164
I'm so sorry! Is there anyway you could contact your social worker and ask about counseling services for the whole family? It sounds like your bf's yelling is only making your problems worse, as is the interference from his mother. They could help you to set up boundaries, and to set up a plan so that you can have some time alone to yourself. It won't hurt the baby to learn to be soothed by him, and for him to demand that you never sit and relax while the baby is awake is ridiculous. It sounds like he also needs some counseling to learn that he has unrealistic expectations of you.
post #14 of 164


Being a mom does suck. A lot of the time. It took me 20 months to get to the point where I actually ENJOYED being a mom. A lot of people don't think I should say stuff like that, but I am being truthful. It does get better, it just takes patience and waiting it out and taking it day by day.

When Toby was 5 months old I went to a therapist about PPD. She called and reported me to CPS because I was very depressed, bulimic, etc (however all she said when treating me was I "need to lose weight and get more sunlight" ) CPS came over. It was terrifying, but you know what? They got me a ton of help I needed.

CPS is not there to take your child away. They're not there to take your XBF's side or even your side. They are there to try to do what is best for your baby. They will get you the help you need, if you are willing to accept it. For us, CPS came ever week for 3 months and did in-home counseling with us. It was a wonderful help. They gave me tons of resources for additional assistance regarding formula, medical care, and even a place where I could drop Toby off if it got to be too much. I could leave him in the care of the nurses for up to 2 hours while I took a break. I never did, but I was so grateful that CPS ended up NOT being the horror story monsters you hear about, but wonderful and kind people who just want to help in any way they can.

Good luck Mama.
post #15 of 164
Every family has a different structure, and I do know dads who have raised their kids with primary custody AND where the kids had a good (even really good) relationship with the mama. Is the ex a good dad? Would you consider letting him raise the baby while you focus on your career? You could probably work out visitation so that you still had a wonderful relationship with your child. It sounds like you really feel trapped. It is o.k. to free yourself even if it isn't the conventional choice.
post #16 of 164
I've been following your story and I'm so sad for you that it has come to this. You need help right now mama. If I were in your situation, I would be checking in to an inpatient unit to get some immediate assistance. It is very important that you get this taken care of, PPD can be very, very serious.

I'm so sorry that you are suffering and life is so hard right now. My mother had me when she was in law school and it was no cake walk. She had to wean me and send me to another city (her hometown where we had already purchased a house for post-school) with my dad so that she could finish with finals without defenestrating me. It was a rough time for her and my dad but we all came through it!

PM me if you need to talk.
post #17 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by first baby View Post
Then, I said, "I'm weaning the baby, weaning works by not nursing him. I'm weaning him, therefore ex BF can put him to bed" She responded, "I'm going to call CPS on you, you can't do that cold turkey"
This is not a CPS issue.

Not feeding the baby at all is a CPS issue.

It should be okay to ask other adults around you for help when you are at the end of your rope. Other family members should provide care for an infant when they are available and mom is losing it. Other family members should learn to feed an comfort an older infant when the breast is not available. It is a cop-out to claim that only mom can care for a breastfed baby.

I cannot imagine CPS opening an investigation based on cold-turkey weaning. It is far from ideal. It's not something I would advise, though I would support every woman in making the best choice for herself and her child that she could at a given time.

I just can't imagine CPS telling a mother that she has to breastfeed, no matter what the circumstances. I think that even in the case of a very sick infant who really needs mother's milk in an immediate-survival situation, it would unquestionably be up to the mother what she does with her breasts.
post #18 of 164
FWIW: A CPS record does not come up during the bar application process that I'm aware of. Criminal and financial mischief are generally what they are looking for. Don't stress your career right now.

If you have access to psych services through your law school, get hooked up with them now. Exams will be cming up and you need all the support you can get.

Use this time to get yourself back together for yourself and your little one.

Consider finding a lawyer now rather than later.
post #19 of 164
Thought I had posted earlier, but I guess it didn't work.

I think, as an attorney who deals with CPS issues, that you should contact the Social Worker. If you have her direct line call and leave her a message.

I would sit down and explain to her that you would like to meet with her outside of your home, as you don't want to discuss things with her around your X and his mother.

I would explain to the Case worker that the day before she came, you and your X got into a verbal disagreement and that before you and him got into more of an argument that you left the room. When you left the room the baby was with your X and his mother. Explain that you went to just to another room to get a few minutes to yourself, to relax and clear your thoughts before going back out to deal with the issue.

Explain that instead you felt like your X followed you into the other room, and he continued to get on your case, including telling you how bad of a person you are and that you were basically being selfish for doing something for yourself instead of housework and caring for the baby at that moment. Explain that then, his mother came in and stated baby was hungry and that you had decided you wanted to wean and told them that. That both he and his mother then tried to strong arm you into nursing, and you just couldn't because you needed some time for yourself, that with your depression you just couldn't continue to nurse. That they threatened to call CPS on you for not nursing. That your X took the baby to the Ped, and that you do not know what was said there to get the Ped to make a referral to CPS, but that you want to work through it.

Explain that when she showed up, that you were still upset and hurt and crying about the things from the day before. Explain that what happened the day before really hurt you and you cried all night, and then when she came, it was a final straw that broke the camel's back so to speak. That at that meeting you were very upset and not clearly thinking, and let her know that you want to cooperate and work with them and be with your son.

Let them know that you know deep down inside that you love your child, but right now in the home situation is not ideal with both your X and his mother living with you and not supporting you through your PPD and that it is manifesting itself and making you feel like you do not love your baby. Let them know that this is not the first time you felt that he has and/or his mother has been strong arming you, explain that you initially wanted to abort the pregnancy because you were not ready, but he used scare tactics and/or forcefulness to get you to go through with it. I would let them know that you do not have a support system around you and that you are miles from home.

Sign releases for them to contact your Therapist for the purpose of getting your diagnosis and if you are compliant with your treatment or not. Also, sign releases for them to talk to your Pediatrician.

Right now, because of how you were feeling and your state on the day they came to visit they have put a safety plan into place to ensure that the baby is safe and comes to no harm. They have not given him custody nor have they given his mother custody, they would have to take you to Court.

Let them know you would like their help to not only get referrals to help yourself, but you would also like assistance with getting yourself and your baby out of the same residence as your X and his mother, because you feel that you cannot continue to live and function where you are not supported. If the place is in your name, then once you get the Ok to have your baby solo from CPS, even working with them to be able to come up with a safety plan for you to be living with the baby by yourself, then tell them to leave, and if you don' feel confident doing it by yourself ask the caseworker to be with you and you can also ask your local police to assist you in getting them out. If they are also on the lease, you are probably going to have to contact your landlord and see how you can get out of the lease and get a place for yourself and the baby. CPS can even assist you with getting a place of your own and often times with getting some furniture. If it is the later case, you may have to go to the old residence when you move out with a police officer to remove your stuff, if that is the case, then I suggest you find someone else to watch your baby while you do it.

Not sure what it is like in NY, but in most States if a baby is born to an unwed mother, she is presumed to have legal custody of the child.

I would also contact your therapist ASAP and see if s/he can see you ASAP. Explain to them what happened, and ask for their help. I would also talk to your OB, as your meds may need to be changed.

Oh, and as for it affecting your ability to get your License. Don't worry, I know Ohio has a convicted cop killer as an attorney who went to law school while in prison, got out did character and fitness and took the bar exam and passed it. Character and fitness committee will question you about it, and be honest, tell them you were suffering from PPD and that you were at the time being treated for it and that you followed the recommendations of your treatment providers and you cooperated with CPS to the best of your ability. They wont hold it against you that you sought help, rather they will acknowledge your foresight for seeing you needed the help and assistance and got it. Many times attorneys fail to recognize their own mental health issues or alcohol/drug issues and fail to seek help. That is why there are often times scare put into you in law school about this subject.

Good luck and feel free to PM me if you want or need assistance or encouragement.
post #20 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by sparklefairy View Post
This is not a CPS issue.

Not feeding the baby at all is a CPS issue.

It should be okay to ask other adults around you for help when you are at the end of your rope. Other family members should provide care for an infant when they are available and mom is losing it. Other family members should learn to feed an comfort an older infant when the breast is not available. It is a cop-out to claim that only mom can care for a breastfed baby.

I cannot imagine CPS opening an investigation based on cold-turkey weaning. It is far from ideal. It's not something I would advise, though I would support every woman in making the best choice for herself and her child that she could at a given time.

I just can't imagine CPS telling a mother that she has to breastfeed, no matter what the circumstances. I think that even in the case of a very sick infant who really needs mother's milk in an immediate-survival situation, it would unquestionably be up to the mother what she does with her breasts.
I do think that CPS is questioning her decision to wean cold turkey. Rather, I think the X said something to the Ped and he became very concerned and made a referral as a mandated reporter.

I think that because Mother was so distraught that when CPS came to visit they did have concerns over Mother's stability and ability to care for the child by herself. That as a result, they wanted someone with Mother to help her and make sure baby was safe.

Not all CPS caseworkers are mean horrible people, not saying that these mean ones do not exist, but not every single one of them is this way.
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