I am new and have a few questions - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 12 Old 08-13-2006, 07:18 AM - Thread Starter
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I am new to the forum and have a few question that I just want another mothers oponion on. I am the mother to 3 boys ages 7,5 and 3 and stepmother to a soon to be 15 yo girl. She spends every summer with us there is a 3000 mile location difference bewtwwn us. My questions, I am trying to push my husband to file for custody of my SD, while she is here with us and not send her back to her mother for some reasons, here they are: her mother is a severe bipolar, wouldn't be to bad IF she was compliant with her medications the doctor gives her. She is not and has alot of mood swings etc. She has an explosive temper and SD is scared to call her mom back if she is what SD calls "all fired up" and her mother is 34 years old and she has a 21 yo boyfriend that has been living with here since he was 16 yo and they had a child about 3 1/2 years ago. So the mom was 30 the boy in HS?? I worry for her welfare with the mother decision making etc. I see alot of the moodswings in my SD that are associated with bipolar but don't know if they are learned due to her enviroment. SHould I push hubbie to try for custody and not send her back or leave it alone. My SD states she wants to stay with mom because she knows we are all OK here and she worries about what will happen to her mom if she leaves. She has been made to grow up to fast and I worry about her . What would you do?

Until later.
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#2 of 12 Old 08-13-2006, 09:15 AM
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First welcome to MDC.

Second- There is a Steph parents forum here and they might be able to offer you more advice. http://www.mothering.com/discussions...play.php?f=333
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#3 of 12 Old 08-13-2006, 03:08 PM
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Also a welcome to MDC!

I second going to the parenting and step-parenting forum. You will find an entire group of moms that can relate to your specific situation and can give you better advice than just the general "public" here at MDC.

You will have to do what you think is best. But being that the daughter is your DH's, you will have to sit down and really discuss it with him. He is the one that will have to make the decision in this matter.

Sorry I can not really be of any other help. But check out the step-parenting forum. I am sure they will be able to offer much better advice.

Any misspellings or grammatical errors in the above statement are intentional;
they are placed there for the amusement of those who like to point them out.
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#4 of 12 Old 08-13-2006, 05:48 PM
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#5 of 12 Old 08-13-2006, 10:35 PM
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w e l c o m e !

In love with Dh since 1998. We created Ds (7.1.03), Dd (10.16.06) and Dd (3.16.09).
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#6 of 12 Old 08-14-2006, 12:37 AM
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In most states your 15 year old sd has a big say in where she lives. It sounds like her home life isn't an ideal one, but if you can't get her on board to live with you then your chances of getting custody are a little slimmer. Lots of kids raised in a very turbulent households wont really know how to function without the severe ups and downs. In fact they try and create the chaos because that's what they are comfortable with. Unfortunatly there isn't much you can so about this except try and give her a more stable environment when she is with you. Which it sounds like she gets already. If you do try and go for custody try and make her understand the concerns you have about her continuing to live with bio mom. Also, is there a specific reason as to why your dh is hesitant to go for custody? Good luck with everything.
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#7 of 12 Old 08-14-2006, 11:23 AM
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Welcome and good luck!

~Jaclyn~ Mama to Lucas Wyatt born 5-3-06
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#8 of 12 Old 08-14-2006, 12:44 PM
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When deciding custody and visitation rights, a court gives the best
interests of the child the highest priority. What the best interests of
the child are in a given situation depends upon many factors, including:

* age and sex of the child
* mental and physical health of the child
* mental and physical health of the parents, including whether the child
is exposed to secondhand smoke and any history of child abuse

* lifestyle and other social factors of the parents
* the love and emotional ties between the parent and the child
* the ability of the parent to give the child love and guidance
* the ability of the parent to provide the child with food, shelter,
clothing and medical care
* established living pattern for the child concerning school, home,
community, religious institution
* school quality--particularly when one parent wishes to move
* the child's preference, if the child is above a certain age, usually
about 12,
* the ability of the parent to foster healthy communication and contact
between the child and the other parent.

I would really take the mother back to court and try for sole custody. Your SD could have her say, and hopefully say what she says to you. Even though she stated she would rather stay with her mom, her reasons are not justifiable. This would likely grant you full custody , good luck.

site i gained the information above from:
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#9 of 12 Old 08-14-2006, 10:31 PM
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In the cases I've known of a parent with a mental disorder, the children weren't removed for that reason in the absence of abuse or neglect. When she's 15 and she wants to stay there, I just really don't think you're going to have a great outcome there. Your sd may be resentful even if you were successful in court at overriding her wishes and simply walk out and go back. I think the situation sounds serious though, and I'd try to get sd into good counseling (where bipolar might be addressed,) but also learning she doesn't have to be responsible and parent her mother. 15 just seems like that age where she's going to have to come to a personal place that she wants something different. Just keep showing her that different and assuring her she's loved and welcome there. If you pay for the counseling, can transport to it be arranged where she lives, possibly through other family, even?
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#10 of 12 Old 08-16-2006, 12:45 PM
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My opinion is I don't think it should ever be the teenagers "sole responsibility" to pick where they want to live.

For example: When I was a kid, I would say I'm moving in with dad, when I got angry at my mom for grounding me to avoid punishment. Good thing I only did that a couple times because I was a fairly good kid. Kids definitely know how to manipulate the system!
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#11 of 12 Old 08-16-2006, 01:04 PM
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I agree that the kid shouldn't have the responsibility to choose the best living environment, 15 is pretty old and if she's not on board with the decision, it could be ugly. It is natural for her to want to stay with what she knows, where her friends are, and the life she is used to. That doesn't mean it is the BEST environment for her, but what I see as the BEST environment for my stepson is not necessarily where he is going to be happiest. Does that make sense? There was a time when I thought it was best that dss not see his "crazy" mom. Now I realize that even with her problems, he needed to have her in his life.

It does seem different to have to send her 3,000 miles away to basically be on her own with her mother as you are not there to be a safe haven. With her age, though, you might have to wait until it is more her idea. Work on convincing her it is the best arrangement, and that she would still be there for her mom. I just don't see that forcing a 15 year old to move across the country is going to have a happy outcome.
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#12 of 12 Old 08-27-2006, 03:59 PM
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