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Managing the Chess Game of Court Ordered Visitation with a Psychopath

I have blogged previously about the nightmare of a court order supervised exchange professional.  In the past two weeks, I have really started to wonder if I am dealing with two psychopaths instead of just one – my spath ex AND this court ordered supervisor.  It has become abundantly clear that this woman chooses to meddle and fuel drama on some occasions and then on others she decides she wants to remain “neutral”.  Today Luc (the spath ex and my sons unfortunately sperm donor) had another court ordered visitation.  (Note:  Luc hasn’t had a seven hour visit for a month and the last time my son ended up in the hospital)  The events that occurred at the drop off have me wondering about whether or not this woman isn’t just a “psychopath drama fueler” but a psychopath herself.

I used to envy those parents who were still together and could take out their child for a family day in the part.  Now, I find myself also envying those who can have a relaxing day and not worry about their child being physically abused or neglected when he is with their ex.  I hate it when people tell me to “go have fun” on visit days.  Those are people who have never had to deal with a pychopath.  I can “go have fun” when I leave my son with my parents or even a nanny who has been properly vetted.  I cannot, however, “go have fun” when I know my son is being used as a pawn in Luc’s vicious terrorism plot.

The Beginning

The morning started out “special” as my son appeared to have woken up on the wrong side of the bed.  He was cranky and I was fighting with him about everything from eating to putting on his clothes.  I knew I had to make sure he had breakfast because I couldn’t rely on Luc to do something basic like feed baby boy.  Baby boy, however, had other plans.  Of course, baby boy didn’t realize that he might not eat for the next seven hours so he was more interested in walking around giving his morning sermon in baby gibberish than stuffing his stomach.

Being Over Prepared:

Initially, when this court order visitation nightmare began, I took the attitude of “if he wants to be a father then he needs to be one.  He needs to provide food, diapers, etc. for baby boy.  I am not going to hold his hand and provide everything!”  Since then, I have realized that providing baby boy comfort has nothing to do with Luc – its all about baby boy.  I needed to realize that even if I did provide the necessities, Luc would still likely neglect baby boy.  After accepting the reality of Luc’s disorder, I decided to provide Luc with diapers, baby wipes, emergency fever medicine, baby first aid kit, snack foods, and a sippy cup.  Today, all of these things were provided.

The dramatic drop-offs:

Baby boy is generally non-verbal.  Besides the occasional “Yea”, “yo”, “Dama” (his name for grandma), and “mama” he really doesn’t say many intelligible words.  He is, however, an amazing judge of character.  For example, he has picked a few women at his school that he has fallen in love with.  The ones he likes are not necessarily the best looking, but they are the ones who appear to be the most loving and who put off an incredible “I love children” vibe.  Baby boy is cautious with people who aren’t excited about children and he seems to be able to smell when people don’t want to have anything to do with him.  He hates the supervisor for the exchanges.  From the moment he sees her he lets out dramatic screams and over months this has not gotten any better.  While she claims it is because baby boy associates her with visits from Luc (and this may be true to a degree), I think he is also picking up that she does not like children.

 

The Dramatic Return:

As the visit drew to a close, I went to the grocery store and stocked up on baby boys favorite foods in anticipation of a tired and hungry child.  About five minutes after my mom picked up baby boy, I received a frantic phone call from the supervisor.  She noted that she had passed a verbal message to my mother and upon passing the message my mother told her to send me an email if she had messages to pass.  Though she had a message about baby boy’s health (Luc had reported a fever), she didn’t see the need to document this in written form.  Instead, she tried to force this information on my mother as my mother attempted to calm a screaming baby boy.

Given the fact that I pay the supervisor 35 dollars to spend 15 minutes dropping my son off with the devil, I was a bit confused as to why she was yelling on the phone to me about how she didn’t have time to send me a text message or an email about medical information.  Instead of falling for her attempts to spin me up, I calmly said, “I am sorry you feel as if she was dismissing you.  This is important information and we need to be sure we have the message correct.”  When I got off of the phone, I was so disturbed by her tone that I had already forgotten what time she claimed Luc gave baby boy tylenol.

Evidence of Neglect:

Other than sheer safety (given the fact that Luc wants to kill me just the way he killed the mother of his other son), it is my understanding that someone who supervises transfers between two parents can also observe for things “out of the ordinary” such as signs of abuse/neglect.  For some reason, our supervisor has developed some sort of fear of testifying.  Its as if she doesn’t want to notice issues because then she could be called into court and asked about them.  Baby boy was returned soaking wet and wearing the same diaper he had been dropped off in (seven hours earlier).  He was exhausted, wet, and starving.  Instead of noticing that the child had been returned in a terrible state having been clearly neglected, she chose to focus on how good it was that Luc noted that he gave the baby tylenol when he “felt warm.”  I want to scream saying, “wow…does he want a gold star for feeling his forehead and giving him drugs?  How about changing his diaper and feeding him?”

Breath, Document, Sleep, and Think Before Acting:

A year ago, I would have immediately sent a scathing email or called the supervisor attempting to figure out how to immediately “fix” the situation or try to get her pay attention to the neglect.  I have learned, however, that in situations like this the best thing to do is calm down before reacting.  Given the supervisor’s recent behavior, I have started to treat her as an extension of Luc himself.  I need to constantly remind myself that I am playing a game of chess with these people.  Nobody has ever won the game of chess by making decisions before thinking about them.  So I will breath – I will document – I will sleep – I will think – Then, I will make my next move in this game of chess.



16 Comments on "Managing the Chess Game of Court Ordered Visitation with a Psychopath"

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  1. Eralyn says:

    I had to pay a cool $4,000 sanction plus pay half of the new reunification therapist cost plus pay thousands for the hearing to have the woman removed from our case who joined in the abuse of my daughter weekly for over a year. She was a horrible unbelievable woman who two of her peers knew her reputation and were involved in our case. She was removed when my daughter took it upon herself to record on her ipod the woman with the spath at a meeting totally badmouthing me to the child. This caused an immediate hearing and above mentioned expenses to me! But we were then ordered to a new non-spath reunification therapist who couldn’t believe what the child had been through and called it equivalent to emotional terrorism. These supervisors and court facilitators are dangerous business for our children. I don’t envy your position and I hope she becomes a non-issue for you. She seems to really have problems with medical issues and your child and I am hearing you say it repeatedly. I think that’s your ticket to get rid of her. She doesn’t want the liability or to be involved with babies medical problems. That’s probably an area she’ll really end up in court about!
    Just my 2 cents. You are being very wise remaining calm and playing chess. You can gather all the evidence and be exactly right in all your points but it can be spun against you every time if they are not in your corner. I really feel she’ll get off the case if you play up the medical problems and keep making her accountable.

    Look at how blown out of proportion she was about the fever and your mom simply asking her to send you “evidence” of the babies fever. She didn’t do it and called getting you all upset because she’s uncomfortable.

    I completely understand that not relaxing feeling of the visits too. So many people would say “oh it’s only an hour per week”. No actually it was the day before stress, the drive there, the biting your nails while they’re there not knowing what angle it will end this week (keeping my phone in my hand for the emergency early phone call for various crisis) and then the recovery the following day after our crazy drive home and damage control from the one hour meeting the day before. I found my child two stories up in a tree she named “wolly”that was in the office complex, trying to break out of an office they locked her in and her running away during the sessions. It was hell…..



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  2. darwinsmom says:

    CQueen,

    Either the in between woman is indeed panicking over the medical risks, or it’s an act in the hope to trigger your worst fears. It sounds the latter to me. She probably knows it sent you in a panic and strong emotional reaction when he ended up in the ER, and it seems to me she’s trying to get you into a frenzy again. Very good of you to respond like a true grey rock!

    Throughout your relation with her, she has always honed in on your worries, tried to amplify them, but when it comes to providing evidence of it or report it officially she either neglects to do that or reports the opposite. She’s definitely trying to feed on drama.

    As for the “go and have fun” advice you’re getting… there is actually some sense in that. Not for the reason they say it. Of course it ain’t no fun. But it’s a grey rock tactic. Spaths always love to annoy and upset us, take what is most precious to us. He knows that you’re worried before driving baby boy to the woman, knows you’re worried while he’s with him (and for good reasons), and at the end of the day are enveloped in dealing with calming down a wailing baby boy. The spath knows that’s at least a whole day you’re thinking and worrying of him. The visitation is his tool to get at you.

    A way to make him more disinterested in visitation is by outwardly using that time for some me-time: the hairdresser, nail studio, a visit to the mall with a friend, … If he learns about you doing any of these things while he has visitation with a son, his plan is starting to backfire in his mind. There he hoped to annoy and upset you and make it a day all about him, and instead you’re getting some me-time.

    He might up the ante though at first by creating a new ER situation, and perhaps it’s too early to risk it with the fever anger for your baby boy, but I’m informing you of possibly looking at “go have fun” as a chess move.



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  3. Ox Drover says:

    C queen, that is another tactic, make the woman who makes the switch think you are going out to have a FUN day….I bet she will pass it on to Luc, and of course Luc doesn’t want you having FUN while HE is saddled taking care of a baby in a diaper….so maybe he will decrease the visits because he sure doesn’t want yOU having fun while he baby sits! LOL



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  4. Ox Drover says:

    ps “there are more ways than one to kill a cat besides choke it to death with butter”



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  5. Truthspeak says:

    OxD – SPOT-ON!!!!!! CappuccinoQueen, the whole motivation behind the spath warthog’s actions are to CAUSE YOU MISERY – period. He couldn’t care less if baby boy is hungry or sitting in a filthy diaper. The only thing that he “cares” about is whether or not you – CQueen – is suffering, spending money on legal fees, attending hearings, submitting to outrageous and intrusive Court Orders, etc., etc, ad nauseum.

    What OxD has suggested – marked diapers, removing tylenol, etc. – is 100% sensible. And, if you show up to deliver baby boy looking and smelling like a million bucks and out for an afternoon/evening of enjoyment, the worm will turn.

    I know that it’s an enormous challenge to put this whole situation in perspective, but it’s all about causing misery. From helping to make you pregnant to the extraordinary abuses, it’s all about causing as much misery as possible, deliberately and with malice. Disallow the misery and malice by changing YOUR perception and understanding of this whole circus. The Courts aren’t concerned. The spath never was. And, your concern, fear, and fury are not going to alter the situation, one bit.

    Continue to document – at every opportunity. Develop creative ways to document, but keep in mind that the documentation isn’t going to make Ms. Visitation Supervisor do her job any better. It’s for future reference.

    Brightest blessings



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  6. newlife62 says:

    This summer I “settled” in court to go from an every other weekend visitation senario to 50/50 against my wishes. My spath sued for sole custody based on 100% false allegations. One week before the court hearing my spath dropped my teenager home while she was in the middle of an allergic reaction to a new antibiotic. He is a doctor and offered no assistance to her. Her face was swollen and had a red rash all over it. This reaction took place during his visitation. He made no attempt during the visitation to contact me about this. As soon as my child walked in the door I something was wrong. I called the on call doctor (it was evening) who suggested starting with over the counter benedryl. If her throat was not affected I was to take her to her primary care physician as soon as the office opened in the am or come to ER if her throat begins to swell.

    Needless to say I was up all night making sure that if her conditions changed we would go to the ER. I took the next day off to take her to the doctor who said it was a whopper of a drug reaction. Since this reaction occurred during the following day the spath could have taken her to the doctor but he refused.

    Back to court. When the judge suggested that we settle because he was going to decide the case with a flip of a coin. My attorney showed him photos of my child’s swollen red face. He turned to me and said did you even bother to contact your ex-husband during this. I told him that the drug reaction began while my child was in his care. The judge repeated, so you made no attempt to include your ex-husband when you called the doctor. I repeated that he was well aware of the situation and as a doctor he chose to ignore her symptoms because it would interrupt his purchase of a puppy (to sway my child to want to spend more time with her dad). The puppy was purchased a week before my daughter was to speak to the judge. This was after her dad moved her from a crappy a crappy apartment to a house with a swimming pool.

    I also had a list of women willing to discuss my spath’s sexual harrassment of them but they judge pointed at him and said I don’t believe this upstanding doctor would do that. One of the woman was a former patient who was going to testify that he kissed her in an examination room.

    Since being awarded 50/50 custody my spath has blown off two weeks to go out of town on personal trips. The most recent was a weekend where my teenager was to cheer at the homecoming game (a big deal for her) and a cheer competition.

    Sadly, my daughter thought that 50/50 would bring her closer to her dad but it was made her realize that it wasn ‘t more time with her he was after, it was a reduction in his child support payments. Luckily the judge did rule that the payments were not to ever be less than he was paying on that day. Hopefully, this will take away the allure of him taking me back to court for more custody issues. My spath’s best friend’s dad is a retired judge so I am certain that this has come in to play with the outcomes as well.

    Finally, we were both ordered to take a parenting class. We did this 5 years ago when the original divorce order was issued. I’m the one who has read numerous books on parenting after divorce. It is such a joke and a waste of $75 but I have no choice. Who knows maybe they have added a chapter about dealing with spaths!

    I have come to realize that those of us in this situation can never let our guards down. I too do not relax when my daughter is with her father. Although she is far from the diaper stage, as a teenager, she is in the era of drugs and alcohol. As I left the courthouse, I received a text message from a reliable source that my spath was providing my daughter and her friends with alcohol when they are at his house. I used this as an opportunity to reenforce to my daughter that my house rules apply to her dad’s house as well. Sadly, it will take someone else’s teenager having a bad alcohol related experience at my ex-husbands house before the judge might change his view about him.

    Be strong and stick by your convictions!



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  7. Eralyn says:

    Newlife62,

    Oh WOW! These cases make me nuts! I know so many moms ignored and disbelieved in court. I think it’s a total win on your part that the child support is never to be reduced. That alone would stop a lot of these abusers from dragging you in and out of the courthouse.

    I wish you all the luck with and peace for the next few years. I am marking my calendar for the 18th birthday of my child and hoping for the best from now until then as you are.



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