CHRONOLOGY OF EVENTS
August, 2018 - I received word that the Harford County Department of Social Services was having a family meeting. At ths time my grandson and his children’s mother were living apart from me. The only information I got from Mommy was that they had smoked marijuana laced with PCP. I never learned whether it was one time or ongoing. As the meeting progressed, the lead social worker stood up and as if on a whim announced, “I’m going to take the kids.” I immediately asked what transitional language they were going to tell “G” that she wouldn’t be waking up with her mommy the next morning and the social worker SHRUGGED HER SHOULDRS and didn’t answer! That ‘s all that decision meant to her.
From the beginning Mommy was treated like a leper. Her children were punished and granted 1 hour a week to see their Mommy. After 24/7 of cuddling, hugs, kisses and feeling loved-they were reduced to 1 HOUR per week of Mommy time and sent to live with strangers. Regardless of anything the parents had done- they were healthy, happy children. DSS refused to give me any further information stating “you’re not a party to the case.” This is their favorite mantra…Evidently, the children were not in imminent danger or they would have been removed immediately from the parents care by the police- not called to a meeting where the decision was reduced and decided by a cold shoulder shrug!
I never got the full story of why the kids were given to Foster strangers. I am not attempting to explain or justify any behavior but although there was no issue with their parenting, the children were punished and have suffered.
June, 2019 - Mommy completed enough of her plan that she and the children were allowed to live with me. The restrictions were that the kids had to be either in day care or with me. This sounds easy enough but it wasn’t. Mommy was not allowed to take the kids to daycare or even pick them up. This meant that I had to find daycare near my job so that in case I got stuck on the beltway in evening traffic, the kdis would be stuck with me rather than be at home with Mommy. By this time, we were dealing with the 5thsocial worker and I asked what would happen if I got stuck in traffic and wouldn’t be on time to pick up the kids. The younger worker replied “call us.” I was suspicious that I wouldn’t be able to call them to many times for help so I placed the kids in a daycare closest to my job. I also asked her what if I wanted to get a manicure or pedicure and she replied, “ take them with you”- which makes o sense!
I realized later how hard this was on Mommy- to not be able to take your kids to a park or for a walk by herself-when her mommy skills were excellent. She didn’t have any control over who was watching them or do anything without me. Her parenting skills were never in question.
Mommy and her kids had clean up songs and wash your hands songs, and bath tub songs and cuddle in bedtime stories and I love you’s. Then DSS gives the kids away to strangers without asking about their routine or how they were to feel safe and secure and loved by strangers. They didn’t make any plans for the emotional needs of those kids and just punished them with callousness that I can’t understand.
July, 2019 (approx.) Mommy had to appear in court to testify against their Dad for violation of probation for a domestic violence issue. Before I was ready, Mommy left and took the kids with her. She obviously still had an emotional connection to Daddy and wanted him to see the kids-even from afar. The social workers found out and called me to come get the kids because in getting the kids ready, she ended up being late for the court appearance and was jailed until the next court date. The social workers called me to a meeting upstairs and the older social worker threatened me very rudely that it couldn’t happen again and that under no circumstances was Mommy to be alone with the kids.
And again- I was to call them if I needed any help.
August, 2019- On this day, Mommy refused to get the kids ready for daycare and said that she was not going to send them. She said that “G” was being bullied and that the day before, a little girl had pulled out the bow in her hair. As it turned out, “G” and her little friend at daycare made up a game where they pulled bows out of each other’s hair. They pulled out 2 before they were stopped by the daycare worker. But when “G” got home and Mommy asked about her bows, she very honestly told her mother that “B” had pulled them out.
It appears that this was a culmination of her frustration with not being able to care for her own kids. On this paticular day, I had made an appointment at work that could not be broken. Normally, I was at work by at least 7:30 after dropping the kids off. I work for the United States Government. If I have to contact an Embassy in Europe for instance, it is not a problem because that region is only about 5-6 hours ahead. However, even if I get to work at 6AM, theAsian region is 15 hours ahead. Most of my work is done electronically but there are occasions where I have to make a direct connection to a foreign national in Asia. we have to make special arrangements since we will be connecting to them at their nighttime. On this day, I had to keep the appointment with a foreign national in the Philippines. Otherwise, I could have stayed at home. There was no time tp ca;; anyone for help and the kids were still asleep when I rushed off.
After I left the house, I called DSS and advised them of what had happened. The younger social worker stated that they would be at my house within the hour. I did not have time to call anyone to come but also the magistrate had ordered DSS to find a back up person to help me- but they never did and didn’t try very hard to find anyone for these impossible restrictions that they had imposed. So when I called to inform them a day of what was happening, I called with the idea that they would “help.”
I made my connection and returned home immeditately. When I arrived back home, the social workers were already here, sitting on my couch and Mommy was crying and said, “they’re taking the kids.”
Later, DSS informed me that Mommy told them she needed a break. And perhaps she did. But couldn’t we have talked about it? Her own mother was hospitalized at that time- out of state- with a heart attack stoke and leg amputation- all at one time. Why couldn’t we have sent her to see her mother? I could have taken some time off from work so that the kids could be at home with her for a while. SOMETHING-but punish the kids again? Take them out of Mommy’s arms, take them away from her bosom because she’ has perfect imperfections? I believe that TOGETHER we could have preserved this family! In 2 weeks “G” started pre school and Mommy was robbed of the memory of her first day at
school and boarding the school bus. DSS didn’t care enough to take a picture of her first day. Only after my prompting did DSS even allow Mommy to have a progress report.
So the kids were punished again and placed with a Spanish family that did not understand African American values, culture and traditions. Harford County Department of Social Services allowed the kids to be mistreated by allowing “G’s” hair to become matted to her head and severely tangled. Although we explained that special treatment and moisturizers were needed, we were ignored and then DSS allowed this stranger to approach this little girl with scissors and CHOP OFF HER HAIR! I then had to explain that little African American girls don’t get their hair cut because their hair needs to taper in order to make a braid or a plait. How cruel that they made this little girl go through this. In addition, we learn, get rewarded, scolded and loved at MAMA’S KNEE while we get our hair combed and brushed.
But why is DSS committing CULTURAL GENOCIDE????
Exact date unknown, (12/2019) We attended a family meeting where the children’s lawyer let it slip that the Spanish family no longer wanted to keep the kids. Otherwise, I don’t know when DSS was going to inform us that our babies were being moved. So in January, 2020-they placed them with a white couple! From this point on, I have had only one visit where we met at Chuckie Cheese. After the covid virus. Mommy only saw them by skype. DSs would not allow any other visitors and one evening when I walked passed the computer and “G” said hello, I was reported like I was a common criminal. Also, when I pointed out to DSS that the plans at the family meeting didn’t address the emotional needs of the kids- they assigned “G” a THERAPIST because she’s TRAUMATIZED! DSS CREATED THE TRAUMA AND THEN GETS THEIR OWN THERAPIST TO REFUSE VISITATION FROM ME?
I want to emphasize that I bonded with these babies, held them in my arms and they lived with me. It is cruel that they not see their ‘Mum Mum.” I believe that it tis the intention of the Harford County DSS to keep them away so long that these innocent babies forget who we are.
Currently, I request a visitation request status at least monthly. The worker always gives the same answer- the therapist is not recommending visitation at this time.