Picking up the pieces from my past…

At one time or another over the years, every one of my family members more often than not fantasized and daydreamed of having young one and baby permanently in our home.

After 4 years I had enough courage to leave, not knowing everything I knew and loved would be stripped from me, how my children would be used against me, and life as I knew it would never be the same. (Everyone involved has been given a new identity: my ex is Mr. his wife is Mrs. And so on, with the exception of my husband whom I’ve always called ‘B’ and me.)

I went through a divorce, (although I was never legally married to this man, but a divorce none the less) and at one time had protective custody on my youngest children. Trying to be civil and kind is one of my downfalls, it is hard for me to say no and because of this I have paid a great price…

In the beginning Mr. was both hesitant and tolerable. While in the Navy, B and I always made sure he had advanced notice on the time frame, including total days in which B wanted for leave. Phone calls were always made 2 weeks prior to confirm us making the Kansas trip; reluctantly he let young one & baby stay with me for most of B’s leave.

When I was able to build a small relationship with my children, when they began asking for me, showing excitement when they see me or when I called, that’s when I noticed the change. Soon home on leave meant bitter fighting with Mr., later I had to answer to Mrs. I rebelled several times explaining I never slept with or got pregnant by her so therefore she has no say on any aspects of my visitation. It only fueled them both and made it worse.

I quickly realized my children would only get to know me if Mr. allowed it.

Often Mrs. was the deciding factor on whether or not the overnight visits I longed for would instead be for a few hours. That left me feeling both Mr. and Mrs. received gratification by controlling how often I seen or heard from my children. I had been left begging to see or talk to young one & baby. Only a handful of precious memories were able to be made. Mr. had to have total control.

Many times after that Excuses as to why I couldn’t see or talk to young one & baby ranged from young one & baby needed to spend time with family out of town, or made plans with friends. It’s Mrs. Birthday and they needed to be there to celebrate it. They couldn’t talk on the phone because they were either grounded, sleeping, at a friend’s, to hyper last time to be allowed to talk to me this time, or my personal favorite, my phone number has been blocked and they no longer answer the phone. I left messages, wrote letters, certified mail etc.

This went on for years, telling me I could see them getting me all excited and after I made the 23+ hour drive home to see our family and my young ones, he changes his mind. I called numerous times, on the rare occasion the adults answered the phone my kids were told “Carrie” is on the phone. When I expressed my love to them both, their response would be “I know” Mr. was slowly turning my kids against me. Young one told me later that both Mrs.  & Mr. would tell her and baby I didn’t love them or I don’t call because I forgot about them. Later on young one and baby heard me leaving a message for them and were able to witness it being erased by Mrs. Several times myself and other family members, including state officials and therapists, made complaints and called the 1-800-ABUSE hotline. Each and every time we were told there was never enough evidence to remove young one and baby from the home.  All her life young one was lied to; now because of this I am left picking up pieces to what should be happy times…

April 11 2011 is the day my life changed; little did I know my family unit was getting more than just a 15 year old girl. I never dreamt it would be like this or that our safety & patience would be tested to the limits. December 13th 2011 was the 1st and 2nd altercation with young one also big sis’s 20th Birthday. Actually it was her 3rd and 4th. Before when she was explosive B was able to restrain her and get control of the situation. This was the first time police needed to be called; young one had lost all control.  Informing me I’m nothing but a worthless bitch that likes to sleep around, I do not deserve to be her mother I’m a filthy whore etc. I couldn’t believe the words coming from young one’s mouth, nor did I have any idea as to why.

Big sis was in Blackwell helping take care of her great grandfather and B was at work. Other than my Labrador and my son MJ I was alone with this explosive child. I asked where all this was coming from and that was a mistake. She started screaming how much she hates me, herself everyone. Spit was hitting my face, fists were pounding my body. I was repeatedly told how much she wanted to fuck me up. My brain was telling me to knock the piss out of her instead I tried to calmly ask again what was wrong.

My questioning didn’t help and she was getting more abusive so I decided to call the police. By this point MJ came into the living room asked me if I was alright and continued to stand next to me. Mind you I’m short I stand 5’5 or 5’6 while young one comes up a bit past my chin. MJ towers over me with ease standing just above 6’3 or 6’4. I don’t know if she was intimidated by him ‘hovering’ or not, she retaliated with “you have to get your baby boy to fight your battles” I said nothing, MJ told her if she hit me one more time he was going to nail her. She started screaming again police arrive and ask what’s going on. I explained I had no idea what set her off, she was fine earlier but became snippy after having a conversation with her father. I also informed them she has a history of explosive behavior. Young one told them she wasn’t happy and she didn’t care what the hell happened. Within 30 minutes she was settled down, the police told her to go to bed and not speak to anyone for the rest of the night. They took my statement and left. MJ had called big sis while the police were at the house, not fully aware of the time I was shocked to see B walking into the house, he wasn’t happy but I calmly explained to him the events from earlier, now big sis is also home so again I find myself explaining what happened.

Within minutes young one attempt to come at me. B grabs her and tries to restrain her, struggling she rolls over on her gut so B swats her bottom a couple times, in return she laughs and does the same thing to him. She is becoming more physical now, B’s glasses are knocked off his face as I was reaching down to retrieve them she pulled her left leg all the way to her chest and flung it forward, she kicked my jaw with such force B thought she had broken it, hearing me wince in pain pleased her to the point of laughter. Again the police were called, different officers this time. The whites of B’s eye is beat red, his glasses are broke my jaw is swollen and I have scratches on my face. Young one is arrested for assault and battery; within 30 minutes the police station is calling us to pick her up.

Since the first set of officers didn’t file the report correctly there was only one battery charge. As soon as we got home she started in on big sis pulling her hair and swearing at her. Seeing her sister disrespect and abuse her parents in the past big sis wasn’t keen on hearing her mouth. She told young one she was selfish and ungrateful, tried to explain to her that I had borrowed money and gone through hell just to get custody switched which is what she wanted. Reminded her how many times I had her back when crap with Mr. would surface, young one responded with she only wanted to live with me to get back at Mr. and with that she lunged at big sis.

Being older big sis was afraid to fight back for fear she would be charged with something, B had to pull young one off of big sis, and police had been to the house twice within an hour and a half. Suspecting nothing would get done, seeing our marks from her past altercations we took young one to the Oklahoma Youth Shelter so everyone could be safe for the night. The following morning we were told to take her to Oklahoma City/Tulsa area she was checked into the 2nd placement of the 6 she has been in since September of 2011.

Called Mr. and explained the goings on, no surprise when he didn’t offer help.

While at this placement we were required to travel 2 hours one way multiple times each month. You were not allowed to question her perception of things however it was quite alright for young one and staff to question ours. After being confronted about her ill behavior she started acting out there. Violence got the better of her again when she assaulted the staff. Received a court date, ticket and a $400 fine and since she’s a minor that leaves us financially responsible.

Between the court dates & weekly therapy sessions, it didn’t allow for a lot of understanding from B’s boss. In turn he lost a damn good job. Having no job meant no money to pay rent & bills, In March we lost our house and had to move in with B’s parents. Borrowing from family was the only way to get to court dates and therapy sessions.

In time it felt like therapy was going like it should, we did confrontation letters followed by forgiveness letters. Young one’s therapist felt Mr. was making things worse. Mr. had been contacted by young one’s therapist which is when he told the therapist he wanted nothing to do with young one, that young one had made her choice to come and live with her mom and now she needed to be responsible for her actions.

Even with all the drama and chaos that has been a constant since September of 2011 I can proudly tell you big sis and MJ have both graduated this past summer. Sadly on February 8 2012 B’s grandfather passed away. Knowing big sis and MJ were devastated, all I could think of was, baby needs the opportunity to say goodbye. With a heavy heart I called and asked to speak to my son, to my surprise he was allowed to spend the night with me the night before the funeral.

Unfortunately young one was not able to see baby nor was she able to go to her great grandfather’s funeral, at the time young one was in a residential group home.

His funeral was held February 13th; big sis was expected to check-in at Guthrie Job Corps Tuesday February 14 2012 the following day. Tuesday morning she loaded the car with her bags, even though we felt she was cheating herself the fair amount of time needed to be able to process her grief (being quite close, they shared a special bond.) Big sis managed to look past the negative and fulfill her commitment to herself she had already received her diploma a year prior to Brian completing his naval contract giving her a slight head start.

Before Guthrie big sis and MJ witnessed first-hand their sister’s abusive behavior. Twice they forgave her willing to give her another chance. Wiser now knowing it was just a matter of time before she has faked her way through yet another facility and landed back in our home. With the word discharged looming above they made the decision to have nothing to do with young one until she apologized.

Big sis worked hard, while still in Guthrie she became a dorm leader, finally obtained her learners permit. She volunteered her own time to help the Special Olympics in Stillwater Oklahoma. She graduated August 24 2012 from job corps health care, after that she moved into her first apartment in Stillwater, OK.

Siblings couldn’t check in at the same time which put MJ leaving a week after big sis. MJ checked in February 21 2012. He took a tad bit longer since he was enrolled in computer tech while also obtaining his high school diploma. MJ was struggling with computer tech completed the course but not the certification. Obtained his driver’s license and lost 50 pounds before graduating with honors. MJ graduated August 24, 2012. Shortly after leaving job corps he moved in with big sis since the job market in Stillwater is more promising than our small town of Ponca City.

Young one had been home 2 months when on September 25 she viciously assaulted me twice, the first being at B’s place of work. I ignored her behavior doing so only amplified it. Seeing B’s co-workers looking our way also amped her attention thrill.

She taunted me with how she wanted me dead and that she was going to kill me. Between the two of us, one of us was going to die and she was going to make sure it happened.

I remained silent. B heard the commotion but wasn’t able to come to where I was parked. Young one got ahold of my thumb and was attempting to break it. I was refusing to allow her any closer, swear word after swear word was spit at me. I had enough, I called the police and again we had to pick her up from the police station. Later at B’s parent’s house was when she next assaulted me, B and his Dad.

Highway trip the next morning taking her to OSU after a few short weeks we have to go back to Tulsa to pick her up since she was being discharged, she threatened me in front of everyone she was going to kill me and no way was she going home with me. Instead of the hospital transporting young one, B and I had to. That was the longest scariest 2 hour drive I had ever made, and in complete silence.

Courts are doing nothing except making us financial responsible. Because young one is put in placement shortly after the altercations her punishment is a slap on the hand. She has been arrested twice and charged with battery each time, received a ticket of $400 for another battery offence elsewhere. To make her guardians responsible financially, exactly what is that teaching her? Yes we are responsible for her, but I draw the line when it’s I or my husband who are left responsible for the fines and court costs because she allowed her behavior to get the better of her.

Finally things were calming down and starting to look up for us. October we were able to move out of his parent’s house and into our own. Young one was in treatment, big sis and MJ were in Stillwater, and it was just B and I. I can honestly tell you it felt amazing, no chaos, abuse or yelling. I had been working from 2-10 for a little over a month, a few days before Thanksgiving I ended up in the ER. All the stress from before had finally caught up to me and I could’ve swore I was dying from a heart attack.

Not having insurance has created a huge problem. I still need an Echocardiogram and a nuclear stress test. Needless to say I am not working and there is no way B and I can make it on our own. Big sis & MJ moved back home and are helping with the bills, for that I am thankful.

Young one has been home now over 2 weeks. She was discharged from her latest placement on January 7 2013 after being admitted October 18 2012. This time I admit to not feeling comfortable or safe with her in my home. I have again opened my home to young one, making it quite clear there is zero tolerance and no room for abusive behavior. Young one is my daughter and always will be, my relationship with young one can in fact be repaired with time, but there comes a time when one can no longer deal with the abuse and explosive behavior. Abuse is why I left my past relationships; I never dreamed I would be abused by my own child, I pray we never have to live it again and that this time will be different.

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