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CPS says we can't homeschool. Advice please. (long) - Page 2

post #21 of 26
It's a pity they're going to "soften" the accusation for court, because that means they'll be saying how you actually homeschool is a problem. Whereas if they stuck with the mistaken impression you'd be able to show, as you did to them, that how they're wrong about how they think you homeschool. "yes, it would be bad for the girls to be locked at home all day, but we're not like that, we go to this that and the other thing with these people who have all written statements about spending time with dd1 and dd2"

Isn't court-ordered therapy a typical step in these cases? I bet you get credit with the judge for having initiated therapy on your own. Could your therapist document your change over the past year? "when I started meeting with GuestMember she was blah blah blah (all the stuff CPS is worried about) and over the course of therapy she has changed to bleh bleh bleh (how you are now, with emphasis on how the issues CPS cares about have been fixed) it is my opinion that GuestMember is a fit parent, etc, etc"
post #22 of 26
Originally Posted by umami_mommy View Post
if the case is unfounded, then i don't think they have a legal leg to stand on in making you do *anything.* if the charges are unfounded, they need to close your CPS case.
Unfortunately, this is not how CPS works. They work by coercion, force, fear, and duress. IMO, they have way too much power and no checks or balances. They do not always have the family's best interests in mind. More cases, more quotas, ect. It is totally based with these types of incentives. (I am not saying there are not sincere people in CPS, I just think the system is broken)
Originally Posted by rockportmama View Post
That sounds so incredibly stressful and terrifying. I think you can be proud of yourself for how well you have coped with all of this nonsense.

Here's my perspective. If it helps you, great. If not, completely ignore me. If I'm completely misunderstanding the whole situation, I apologize.

They are, effectively, bullying you into giving them permission to continue to bully you. They agreed the charges were unfounded. They know you have a legal right to homeschool. They *should* know you have a legal right to not vaccinate. But they're dangling the idea of taking your kids (which they already said they will not do, right?) to scare you into signing away your rights and give them permission to be a constant, invasive, anxiety-producing presence in your lives.

The "softening" sounds like nothing more than a good cop-bad cop routine. They scare you with all kinds of possibilities that are trumped-up and outside the legal limit of what they can require. Then they come back with a softer offer to "just" keep tabs on you so they can trump up something else later.

I would focus on what things I could *do*. Find out what the legalities really are. Get legal advice. Find out if I could get a copy of my CPS file. Get letters from friends, family, drs, therapists, etc. Find out how many of them will sit on the stand and talk me up. Find out how many of them are willing to sit in the court and support me. (Having support sitting in the court room with you makes you look better to the judge.) I would also practice looking calm and confident, because I'm guessing the CPS workers can smell fear and know how to use it to get what they want -- whether it's a legal request or not.

My heart is with you. s
There is a lot of good advice here. I agree. Get a lawyer well versed in HS and or CPS cases.
I totally understand how fearful this must be! I am praying for your family.
Don't let them use your fear against you--can you find ways to foster your hope/internal power?
post #23 of 26
CPS has no knowledge whatsoever of child mental health or what healthy attachment is. They are also overworked and one hand does not know what the other is doing.

If it were me, and I don't know how feasible this is for you but, if it were me, I'd simply disappear to another jurisdiction. If you leave the state, they will not have the resource or time to bother to track you.

eta: I would recommend not having your mail forwarded or leaving any indication of where you went

I realize that may see extreme. I just think my fight or flight would be activated!!

post #24 of 26
Originally Posted by dannic View Post
Unfortunately, this is not how CPS works.
actually i worked for many years with CPS as a mental health professional in NY state. it is supposed to work like that, but sometimes you need a lawyer to protect yourself when they stray over the line. i am guessing the real problem here are the doctors who thought she had MSBP. doctors don't like to be proved wrong and they feel she needs "watching." they think that if she is "watched" by school officials everything will be okay. of course this is BS, the last people to call CSP are schools, even when things are really really wrong.

i would never flee the state, i would get a lawyer and fight them. doctors in the country need to be zen slapped. they think they own women's bodies.
post #25 of 26

OHhhhhh, I just HAVE to respond to you.

First of all... the most recent message I see from you is from Feb. 6, I think. How are things progressing?!?!?

I just finished reading the book "Do No Harm?" (McGill) It is a critical look at Munchausen by Proxy. Basically... there are a lot of stories out there that are very close to your experience. True disorders which confound the medical professionals, a mom who advocates strongly to have her child's needs met... an accusation of MBPS. I say accusation on purpose. First of all, interesting that it this now sits in your child's records, even after they have cleared you. Again... sounds like the stories I have just read. Ironically, MBPS is not a disorder of the child... it is an alleged disorder of the parent. And yet, there it sits... in your child's records. It is supposedly a psychiatric disorder, and yet... it isn't in the DSM. At least, I couldn't find it there... I will be looking that up again later.

At any rate, I am glad that part has been cleared up!

I do believe that it is the right of the parents to choose the method of education of their children, as long as it fits within the legal options. Is homeschooling legal in your state?

Second... your mental health situation has NO basis in determining whether or not your family may homeschool! Not their business.

The ONLY thing that they may hold on you... is whether or not you are abusing or neglecting your children. (homeschooling... even unschooling in most areas, is not considered neglect or abuse. If they have concerns about that, then they can keep an open file. If the entire concern was sick child possibly with mom "too concerned" about her, that really doesn't seem neglectful or abusive. If the only other concern is your anxiety... that again is NOT neglect or abuse! You have already admitted that things were rough for you in the past. The investigation is about NOW. If your family is functioning adequately, they have NO reason to keep an open file. I would also have concerns with MSBP in my child's records, without any substantiation. Perhaps a lawyer could help get that removed!

I agree with others who have suggested you obtain legal counsel! ABSOLUTELY! It would be my first priority... find the money! That would be what I would do!

I also have depression and anxiety, both quite well controlled. My girls were in public school until March of last year. They are 8 and 10 now... both have complex needs. My anxiety AND THEIRS is WAY better over the past year! They are recovering gradually from the damage which occurred as a result of being in public school. And they were in a pretty good situation all in all! Just the garden variety of pressure, bullying, peer competition, and all that stuff. Nothing really horrible!

Hospital staff felt that my older daughter needs to be in school in order to have "same age peer interaction on a daily basis" because she has anxiety! I have seen how her anxiety (and other challenges) manifest when she has "same age peer interaction on a daily basis" in a public school! I have seen how she is now becoming more skilled and confident in her interactions with children of all ages, and with adults. I thanked them for their opinions and asked for the research which they referred to (although they never named and specific research... it was just "research shows that kids like this do better... blah blah blah..." They never did give me the research information.

We will continue to homeschool for as long as it is in the best interests of my children... in OUR opinion! I wecome other professional opinions... but I need more than uneducated opinions before I make any changes. I have done enough research of my own to know what is working for my kids!

All the best to you guestmama! Let us know how things are going! I hope that there may be some small bit of my (rant) which may give you courage, strength, and hope!
post #26 of 26
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