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PPD and CPS - BIG UPDATE post 156 - Page 2

post #21 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by khaoskat View Post
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.
Yes, that was my thought (that CPS wasn't questioning it). I was just adding that the next time her MIL says something ridiculous, it might help her to stay calm if she thinks about how ridiculous it is in the moment.

I agree that help is needed. I hope mom can get more help.
post #22 of 164
I had a number of inpatient stays and lots of outpatient therapy for anorexia. I was very concerned about the impact on getting a law license. I saw a therapist who had worked with many professionals who had eating disorders and other emotional difficulties. His advice: Be honest and disclose it on the bar application. Under no circumstances lie on the bar application.

His advice was well-heeded. I had no difficulty getting my law license.

I second calling the CPS worker and apologizing and explaining and asking for some additional referrals. I think many people can imagine staying with your MIL being very stressful.
post #23 of 164
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone. I do need to contact the social worker, but she was very very cold to me, and it felt like she had judged me before I even got home (she was waiting for me, and had already spoken to my xBF's mom - I don't know what was said, but I'm terrified of what she said about me - she's a real witch and has lied to my own mother about me before). For this reason I'm terrified to speak with her - she was NOT nice to me and basically told my xBF that he needs to file for custody.

I went yesterday to the ER, they did not keep me overnight (thank god, I've never been away from Lincoln overnight, and that would have been terrible). The psychiatrist I saw is going to call my therapist, and among other things to let her know why I missed my appointment yesterday (I was in the ER at the time of the appointment, and didn't have the chance to call ahead). I gave the social worker permission to talk to my therapist, but not to speak to my PCP or my psychiatrist.

xBF and I are now sleeping in separate bedrooms, which will ease some of the tension. We are starting to wean our son - although we're having some trouble deciding how to do it so I'm on my way to Kellymom.com to see if there is a gentle way to do it gradually and if we should use formula or if we could wait a few more weeks and go straight to cow milk. (my reasoning for that IS NOT to save money, but rather he is very picky, and I highly doubt he will take to the formula, but he might actually like cow milk or another form of milk - any ideas about that? He's 10mo now, and if we wait 2.5more weeks he will be 11mo)

I'll keep everyone posted.
post #24 of 164
When it comes to making a choice about weaning, I might first try to realistically gauge if it will really help. In the case where others aren't helping with childcare, it might not take much pressure off mom. I know that for me, had I had to deal with bottles (which you don't have to start at 10 months, you could go to cups instead) and finding other ways of comforting a non-verbal child, it would have been much easier to continue to breastfeed.

If you can get ahold of a book called "How Weaning Happens" (which may be available to borrow through an LLL group nearby) it will have some weaning ideas tailored to your child's age. You might also post this in one of the breastfeeding forums here, ask at a LLL meeting, or solicit more ideas here.

I will be thinking of you. I am a full time student and mother to two older kids and know that it is hard. I've also experienced depression. Throw it all together and, well, something has to give sometimes and when it's mama's health, it's time for something to change.
post #25 of 164
In addition to everything else you are doing to take care of yourself, have you thought about adding cod liver oil and magnesium? IT HAS HELPED ME SO MUCH! I just want to tell everyone about it. I'm not saying it a quick fix. I think you should continue taking your medicine, seeing your therapist, maybe find a better therapist. But these vitamins have helped stabilize my mood soooo much and makes it easier for me to handle stress.

Take care of yourself.
post #26 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruthla View Post
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.



Quote:
Originally Posted by first baby View Post
Thanks everyone. I do need to contact the social worker, but she was very very cold to me, and it felt like she had judged me before I even got home (she was waiting for me, and had already spoken to my xBF's mom - I don't know what was said, but I'm terrified of what she said about me - she's a real witch and has lied to my own mother about me before). For this reason I'm terrified to speak with her - she was NOT nice to me and basically told my xBF that he needs to file for custody.

I went yesterday to the ER, they did not keep me overnight (thank god, I've never been away from Lincoln overnight, and that would have been terrible). The psychiatrist I saw is going to call my therapist, and among other things to let her know why I missed my appointment yesterday (I was in the ER at the time of the appointment, and didn't have the chance to call ahead). I gave the social worker permission to talk to my therapist, but not to speak to my PCP or my psychiatrist.

xBF and I are now sleeping in separate bedrooms, which will ease some of the tension. We are starting to wean our son - although we're having some trouble deciding how to do it so I'm on my way to Kellymom.com to see if there is a gentle way to do it gradually and if we should use formula or if we could wait a few more weeks and go straight to cow milk. (my reasoning for that IS NOT to save money, but rather he is very picky, and I highly doubt he will take to the formula, but he might actually like cow milk or another form of milk - any ideas about that? He's 10mo now, and if we wait 2.5more weeks he will be 11mo)

I'll keep everyone posted.
You PPD and stress could make it so your perceptions are off on the social worker. Try to take it a step at at time and try not to assume she's made up her mind. Her job is to investigate the circumstances, she is not a judge. Does she know you are struggling with PPD? As Ruthla said, she may be able to help you connect with resources. I would be completely open and honest and allow access to your therapist, PCP, and psychiatrist. If you really aren't well enough to care for your baby, there is nothing to be gained by hiding that. It is in everyone's best interest to put aside fears and look at the reality of the situation and make a plan for baby's wellbeing which includes a plan for you to get well and be able to mother your baby with your whole self again because that is what is in baby's best interest - a happy healthy whole mama.

I am so glad you went to the ER. That took great courage. Do you feel that they took your concerns seriously? Do you feel like there is a plan in place for you? Don't give up, mama. Go back it you need to or call 211 (state info line) and find out what is available for immediate help if you are feeling desperate.

Regarding the weaning, I posted in another thread, but I will reiterate it here. I would go straight to cow's milk in a sippy at that age if there is no allergies. Whole organic milk, raw if you have that available in your area. Formula tastes pretty yucky to an EBF baby IME. Warm the milk slightly, it makes it sweeter and more comforting and familiar to baby. I would drop one feeding at a time, one every few days to allow your body and his to adjust (you don't want to get engorged or get mastitis). I would save the favorite feedings for last. It takes a few weeks to wean this way but its ideal over cold turkey, a lot less traumatic. If he's dependent on nursing to sleep, that is often the biggest hurdle. Distraction works well, and changing things up to avoid the areas that are strongly associated with breastfeeding. For example, instead of nursing in bed in the early morning, get up and make breakfast. Instead of rocking and nursing in the chair, make a little snack and then go for a walk in the stroller or carrier to get him to fall asleep. If he starts to paw at your shirt, offer him a drink of milk or go make a snack for him or get out a new toy. You can shorten the feedings too, by a few minutes each day. Weaning is not an all or nothing thing, perhaps just cutting back a bit will help your stress.
post #27 of 164
Thread Starter 
Update:

Things have gotten worse.

On friday morning I very slightly raised my voice, the baby was not upset and didn't even look up from his toys. xBF said to me, "I'm going to have to call the social worker since you're not allowed to yell in front of the baby." I said, "That doesn't count, I hardly raised my voice, and he didn't even notice." xBF said, "Who are they going to believe?" It's more complicated than that, but after he asked who they would believe I started crying and freaking out that he was going to start lying to CPS about me.

I'm already afraid he DID lie to cps about me, and I need to speak with my son's pedi to tell him my side of the story. When I yelled at xBF's mom on Wednesday, both she AND xBF had been yelling at me prior, and are what provoked the whole thing.

I really think that he has planned this out, and insisted that his mom be our son's baby sitter so that he could make her look like his primary care provider. I REALLY hope that doesn't work. He insisted. He won't admit it now, but my mom heard him. His dad will also testify that his mom is the best person to take care of the baby (which could be good for me, b/c what say does grandpa have??).

BUT - to clear up a few misconceptions:

The baby is WITH ME and xBF is living in the same apartment with us. xBF is trying to come up with a reason to take the baby to his mom's house, and has said that my parents can't stay in this apartment if they come to visit (which they are, for xmas now that this is happening, and my mom may come earlier if I need her).

I saw my therapist on Saturday for an emergency session, based on things that I've told her about xBF, she thinks he should be sued for harassment and emotional abuse. She has my social workers number (I gave it to her) and is going to call first thing her next day back at work. She's also going to find time to see me this week even though its a short work week for her.

I'm perfectly capable of taking care of the baby. When my xBF is not around to antagonize me and be a jerk, the baby and I do great. I don't do it the same way that my xBF does, but we do fine - after all, I was practically a SAHM until my son was 7.5months old, and by then he was standing up on his own, and he started walking at 8.5 months. Most of that is his own stubborness and unwillingness to give up on something, but if I had truly been neglectful he would not have met all these milestones early.
post #28 of 164
Wow mama, that sucks. I think you need to start gathering (non family) character witnesses to help CPS see your side of the story, as well as being very honest about what you are going through and the help you need and deserve. It's important that your ex MIL is out of the story, I think it is causing so much stress for you. Do you have any possibilities of going to stay with YOUR mom for a while, with the baby? Obviously you should discuss that with CPS before you do it too. If you give total control over the baby over to your ex BF and his mom, I think that might be difficult to undo later, when you do feel able to care for him.
post #29 of 164
Thread Starter 
No, MittensKittens I can't go stay with my mom, she's too far away (on the opposite coast). She is however, planning to come here asap to stay with me so that I can keep the baby with me.

I'm going to call the social worker today and tell her that I need to meet with her before anything else gets done. I'm going to fight giving total control over to xBF and his mom, and I would like to get his mom out of the picture - but I need my mom's help to do that. No one else but me and her know this lady for what she actually is.

I think that if my mom comes here, then I can make the case to CPS that I will be caring for the baby while she is with me - but that if they let Will take the baby and move in with his mother that SHE will be caring for him. Parent trumps non-parent right? I hope so anyway. xBF has spent tons of time convincing me to accept her help, and to see as just that, help, when in reality, my instincts and my mothers instincts have been that she and Will are trying to take him away from me.

I'm terrified. I really am.
post #30 of 164
Are you taking classes right now?

I think it would make a huge amount of sense to get your Mom to your place ASAP. Find a new place to live. Ask your parents to help you out financially if you need to. So many things will go better when you don't have the EX in the same house.

You may need a lawyer to help you once you move out, so the EX gets minimal visitation and can't mess with you more. Of course, you know where to find a good family lawyer.

You WILL get through this, and things will be so much better once you have PPD addressed and no longer are living with the EX.
post #31 of 164
I think that you should get him out of the apartment. If he does ANYTHING, like yells at you, threatens, makes you feel scared, call 911 and get the police to escort him out. He's being manipulative, trying to make himself look like the good guy and you the crazy one. You have to take control. Or even take your baby and go to a shelter saying that you feel like you are in danger. Maybe it sounds extreme, but do anything so that he can't take the baby. It would be a lot easier for things to go downhill once he and his mom took your baby.

And straight-up tell DFCS that he has been grooming you to have him and his mom take the baby, that he is lying, manipulative, abusive, etc.

I'll be thinking about you mama and I jope everything is okay!!!
post #32 of 164
Threatening to a mother to take her child away is the worst form of emotional abuse. He is emotionally terrorizing you, mama. You need to get away from this man asap. You are toughing it out in an impossible situation. Emotionally abused, without support, raising a baby, struggling with PPD, facing CPS surrounded by adversaries rather than support...and trying to go to school! School can wait. Securing your health, the well-being of your child and your rights as a mother are things that cannot wait.

Desperate times call for desperate measures. My instinct would be to drop out of school based on a personal/family emergency and go home to your mom. I would call a family law attorney and double check, but to my knowledge since you are not married to your boyfriend, he really doesn't have legal rights to the child without a court order. He can and will likely sue for those rights, but by that time you can be safely in the arms of your support system (mom and family). CPS in your state may be contacted and you can tell them and/or the judge at that point that you fled due to emotional abuse, that you did have PPD but that has been treated (make sure this is true - get treatment, counseling and on effective meds as soon as you get there) and that you and baby are now thriving in a more supportive environment.

At the very minimum, get your mom here for as long as possible and get the support you need to face this. Depression makes you foggy and so does being abused. You need a loving, supportive, more objective person to help you navigate this crisis. I spent 2 years out of state from family trying to deal with an abusive ex who terrorized me with threats of custody during our separation and divorce and looking back I can see how the isolation made it so much easier for him to terrorize me and maintain control. If I could go back I would have packed up and went home to family and dealt with the legal fallout from there with support, or at the minimum had a loving family member come be with me at every pivotal decision-making point (court dates, mediation, etc) to help advise and give support.
post #33 of 164
Oh wow, if you were being supported instead of being pushed further into depression you would be less stressed and better able to cope. Your living situation is causing you to feel more crazy then you probably really are. I lived through something similar and removing myself from the situation is when it got better. My ex and his mom made my life miserable. They wanted to raise our kids together without me in the picture, my needs weren't important to them at all. No wonder you are having such a hard time. First of all i would stop listening to your ex and his mother period. Do not engage with them. Legally they can't stop you from doing anything. Call the social worker and describe your living situation with them treating you like you are an awful person. You aren't. Your living situation is causing you unbearable stress. You are a good mother, you are seeking help but you need to seek help without the ex and his mother involved. Get your mom out here ASAP and start getting healthy and getting in control so that you are capable of being a good mama. I bet once you are out of that living situation you will feel so much better. Also don't worry about school right now. Take it one day at a time and deal with one thing at a time. Get yourself on track and school will always be there waiting.
post #34 of 164
Thread Starter 
I'm trying to get my mom here, but she has to get leave from work unfortunately. I may ask her if there is anyone else who can come - anyone would do right now.

I emailed my professor, and she has said that she will give me an incomplete for the semester, and that I'm not to do anything for school until this is resolved. So school is on hold for the moment.

I need to make some more phone calls today, but I think I'll be filing for an order of protection and a temporary custody order first thing in the morning.

I'm a little calmer today, although thats b/c xBF was nice to me this morning. I'm not sure which is worse right now - the mean him or the nice him. The nice him is incredibly well liked at school, and known for being reasonable, and is the person everyone else see's. Only I see the mean him - which is extra scary b/c everyone will stand up for him.
post #35 of 164
That's the nature of abusive relationships, my love.

At this point, I'd be inclined to arrange an interview with your social worker and ask her if she can bring her supervisor as well. Find out exactly what is going on, and where they're intending to go to here. Also, without going into details, I would tell them that there is a relationship breakdown right now.
I need you to know that when I hit the point where I decided to wean cold turkey, I was hospitalised three days later. It sounds like your ex has forced you to keep going a little bit longer- not a good thing, admittedly, but still. You simply do not have the luxury of living under this much stress for much longer, because sooner or later you need to break under the pressure. There is a possibility that the social workers can help you get the help that you need, that isn't going to involve separating you from your baby. This is why I'm suggesting, so strongly, that you talk to them and ask for help.

I'd also get a family lawyer lined up- it sounds like SleeplessMommy has some good help for you there- and I'd get CPS and the lawyer talking to each other as well. It sounds like you have four goals: to keep parental rights and custody, to get that man out of your hair, to get well again and to finish school and be the lawyer and parent you dreamed of being. All of this is possible, but you need to believe in yourself and you need to accept help where it's offered.
Life on the other side of PPD can be awesome, btw. I know you're in the depths of it now, but seriously, there is life after depression.
post #36 of 164
Guestmama, I am sorry that I misunderstood your situation. I can imagine how scary this would be. Things will be so much better when you get the XBF out of the apartment. You sound like a strong person who is going to get through this incredibly difficult time. I am sure that when you sit down with the ped., the social worker and anyone else involved, they are going to have a much clearer picture of what is going on and will be able to help you get to a much better place. You WILL get your law degree and you will keep your baby. You are doing all the right things to make it happen including arranging for incompletes right now.
post #37 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by guestmama900 View Post
I'm trying to get my mom here, but she has to get leave from work unfortunately. I may ask her if there is anyone else who can come - anyone would do right now.

I emailed my professor, and she has said that she will give me an incomplete for the semester, and that I'm not to do anything for school until this is resolved. So school is on hold for the moment.

I need to make some more phone calls today, but I think I'll be filing for an order of protection and a temporary custody order first thing in the morning.

I'm a little calmer today, although thats b/c xBF was nice to me this morning. I'm not sure which is worse right now - the mean him or the nice him. The nice him is incredibly well liked at school, and known for being reasonable, and is the person everyone else see's. Only I see the mean him - which is extra scary b/c everyone will stand up for him.
That is wonderful about school. One less stress!

Mama, I'm not sure you need an order of custody. As unmarried bio-mom you HAVE custody by default. Check w/ a family attorney on this. A protective order is hard to get w/o physical abuse or threats of bodily harm but definitely worth a try, it will at least get the ball rolling. You are making great steps in the right direction!

And yes, the nice/mean cycle is the cycle of abuse. The book that saved me and helped me see through the games was "Why Does He DO That? Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men" by Lundy Bancroft, a therapist who has worked with abusive men for 15 years. I found it very empowering. I agree with the PP that it sounds like this is a combo of PPD and abuse that has you feeling so "not yourself". In fact, it is very possible that your exBF is trying to keep you feeling depressed and "crazy" - this behavior is talked about in the book. Once you can recognize this behavior for what it is, its less effective. He also wrote a book called "When Dad Hurts Mom" which discusses parenting/custody issues with an abusive man and how to protect yourself and your children in the court system.
post #38 of 164
I think, could be wrong here, that he is using your depression as leverage to gain custody. With just having broken up then he realizes he can get more leverage if there is something else wrong in the relationship. Anything you can do to get people on your side will benefit you right now. Get out of that home now though. Seriously. Talk to your son's ped, the social worker etc. Anything your ex and his mom says is heresay so be careful of what you agree with what they are saying to the social worker etc. Try to get help outside without telling ex you are doing so and where you are going for help. No longer any of his business.
post #39 of 164
I agree with everyone else you need to get out of there. Call the social worker and tell her your going to your mothers with the baby, they can easily transfer the case to your mothers area. Once your out of the situation and put a few thousand miles between you two which will greatly help your stress and your family can help you sort things out and find you the help you need. I've been though severe PPD and its not fun mama, get the support you need and things will get better but there only going to get worse if you stay there.

s

ps: do not tell your ex your planning to leave unless you want him filing an injunction or what ever its called to prevent you from leaving or filing for emergency custody. Get your Mom out there even if its just for a couple of days to get CPS ok to move and go back with your mom. God knows my cousin had to do this with every one of her kids, (7 kids and lost every one to CPS due to mental health issues, my aunt would go get her and the kid and bring them back home across state lines with CPS ok. Of course cousin would end up leaving kids behind, go get prego again and we'd repeat the process again and again but that's a whole other ball of wax. Point is, even though my cousin was batty off her meds which got the kids pulled CPS was fine with my aunt taking the baby and my cousin back home to get her back on meds and getting her head straight again. At this point even if they take custody from you and give it to your mom, that's much better then your ex and his mom.)
post #40 of 164
Thread Starter 
I think that leaving would almost be worse - it would look bad wouldn't it?

I don't know what to do. Right now, baby isn't going out of my sight but I'm constantly around xBF's family.

I left a message for the social worker, we'll see if she calls me back.
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