Tuesday, August 12, 2008


So this morning both social workers made it at the same time. That state worker can talk. They, of course, asked Gary about what he was doing. Gary talked about football practice. The state worker then gave Gary a 15 minute lecture on the sorts of foods to eat, the possibilities of wrestling, his own experience in wrestling, finishing up (finally) with how caffiene, carbonation, sugar and alcohol would interfere with his performance.


We needed him to sign some papers. He did, but he spent some time talking about whether Gary's dad couldn't do it. It was better for him to do it. He had parental rights. Could we get him to do it? I said gently that we had been having difficulty getting a meeting set up with Gary's dad and the papers did need to be sign. He finally did.

We had a conversation about how everyone wanted for Gary and his dad to be able to have visits. I asked the state worker that to tell me what he needed to approve unsupervised visits. The worker went on and on about this too. All I really got was that he would accept my judgment if we spent some time with Gary and his dad. Gary's dad could even just hang out at my house with Gary. Just so long as I had enough contact to get a feel for it.

After he finally left, and Gary left to go to the Y, the agency worker reminded me that she did not recommend that I invite Gary's dad into the house. He can be ... um ... verbally confrontational. He also threatens to take action if he doesn't get what he wants. Things like kidnapping Gary, or calling supervisors and judges to get workers fired. He doesn't carry through on the threats and no one takes him seriously, but still.

She also told me that in the one conversation she did have with him, he said he wanted to talk with her and the state worker about the level of supervision that Gary was not getting. He was concerned that Gary was allowed to ride the bus to friends' houses all the time. He could be doing anything and I wouldn't know.

We agreed that Gary's dad is frustrated at not being the parent, at not having control. The worker assured me that people knew that Gary's dad made outrageous charges about everyone and no one would take him seriously. Still, it would be wise of me to maintain clear boundaries.


I did appreciate the heads up. I know and she knows that there are buttons his dad could push very easily that could result in varying levels of trouble for us. It could be very ugly, but I think the most likely scenario would be simply that Gary would be moved. Dad's past behavior indicates that he is most likely to make complaints that we are incompetent -- the inadequate supervision thing is typical. Of course he could make allegations that would require investigation. That hasn't happened to us yet.

So we will not invite him into the house. I am also asking the agency worker to back me up in telling TJ that "we" all agreed that it isn't appropriate for a decision about unsupervised visitation to be based upon my experience. They should expect to have a visit with a social worker before they have unsupervised visitation.

I actually am completley in favor of unsupervised visitation. All they want is to be able to grab some lunch, shoot hoops at the Y, or maybe go fishing. I think it would be appropriate and safe for them to have those sorts of visits.

Given his behavior with social workers and judges however, I don't feel safe with the idea of Gary's dad believing that I am the thing between him and these visits with his son. I would like to think that would make him play nice in my company, but based upon his past behavior, it is more likely to result in him telling me that if I don't tell the social workers what he wants me to tell them he will call someone and get my license revoked.

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