Sorry it has taken a little while to post again. We're dealing with some issues at the moment with The Beast and I've been too tired to post.
While he was in daycare (I guess this is technically before he was in pre-k, so I'm out of order again. Go figure.) he was in a class where the teachers seemed to change every week. He was 2 or so years old and one day I went to pick him up (after we were married, she HAD to add me as a person to pick him up) and the teacher said, "He bit everyone in the class today. And both teachers." So I got onto him. I patted him on his butt OVER his diaper. I did not HIT him, and I did not hurt him. (Did you know step-parents are not allowed to spank? Just a sidenote.) I did not yell, nor did I yank him around. I patted him on the butt ONCE, gently, and said, "We do not bite. " Looking back, I should've done nothing. But hindsight is 20/20. Anyway, as I was walking out the door, I noticed one of the teachers yanking a little girl by the arm and spanking her HARD. The kid was kicking and screaming. I said something to the assistant director at the front desk as I was leaving and she went in the room.
We got home and I let Kiddo play in the backyard and run around with our Siberian Husky. They loved to play together and they had a good time. Kiddo got knocked over once and hit a landscaping trailer as he landed on his bottom. Not a big deal. He cried, I picked him up and he had a small scrape but nothing major. Didn't think much about it and the next morning, we are getting into the car to go to daycare and kiddo says "owie" and points at his back. There is a slight discoloration and the scrapes are there. I looked at it and it honestly looked harmless. Mistake number two.
We get to daycare and I point out the slight bruising and scrapes to the teacher, who calls in the director. They gasp and wonder what happened. I said, "Well, he fell down, but it didn't seem that bad at the time. I didn't check him before he left here yesterday but his fall really wasn't that bad." I left and had a bad feeling. I get to work and a few minutes later, the daycare director calls to tell me that she called DHS (Dept of Human Services) because while she didn't think I was abusive, she was required to report bruises. And one of the teachers told her I had "beat him" when I found out he had bitten all the kids. WHAT?!?!
While any normal parents would just think it was ridiculous and not worry about it, I worried because I know how The Beast operates and this will be blow up in my face.
DHS calls and talks to me on the phone. I told them everything and invited them to come to our house anytime, unannounced, to do whatever they felt necessary to investigate because I had nothing to hide. They never called my husband. I was upset, but Husby said, "The Beast will do something. We just have to wait and see." He was upset and worried too but knew I'd never hurt Kiddo. She shows up at our house with Evil Witch and takes Kiddo from our house that evening. Husby argues with her and says, "You know I would NEVER hurt him!" She said,"No, but Constance would!" He argued with her and just let her take him. What could he do?
A month goes by and we get him on our two weekends and our day of the week. We even get him on Labor Day which was our holiday that year. Not a word is said. All seems well. Then one day I wasn't feeling really well so I slept in and was going into work a little late. A sherriff's deputy knocks on my door. I answer and he is there to serve Husby with a RESTRAINING ORDER. It took that bitch a MONTH to decide to do this. I call our lawyer's office to find out what it is because I have no idea. The secretary is beyond rude, but basically tells me its a restraining order and to NOT contact The Beast, as it will violate the order. We are told not to go near the daycare, Beast's home, or contact her or Kiddo in any form until the court date.
We get in to see our lawyer and she looks at the date of the DHS call and the date of the restraining order and tells us how ridiculous it is and that the judge will dismiss it. We want to call DHS to see how their "investigation" has turned out and our lawyer says to not do that, because that's what guilty people do. WHAT? We are accused and we want to know what's going on. She says no. LawyerLady is supposed to be the best and she's a good friend of Husby's family, so we listen to her. Plus, she isn't charging us much and we can pay her out in payments.
So, 30 LONG days go by until our court date. We have not seen Kiddo this entire time. Our hearts hurt. I am so upset and worried and anxious. I start losing weight, I can't sleep... I honestly thought that Husby was going to blame me and leave me. I forget what he said, but it made me think I needed to leave. He asked me where I was going and I told him I was leaving. He told me to stay, that he needed me to help him fight. So we hugged and cried together and that created one hell of a bond between us that day. We pledged to fight her and that good people have to win at some point.
We get to court and our lawyer thinks this will be dismissed and we'll be out of there in a few minutes. We get sworn in as a room (there were lots of people there for different cases), and then when its our turn, Husby and Beast sit at the table with their lawyers. My FIL and I are sitting in the audience. I am asked to leave because I am a "witness." Next thing I know, I am sitting outside the room with EvilWitch. She's talking to the woman next to her and I just try to busy myself with reading things on the bulletin board in the hallway. I get called in and am asked to sit in the witness seat. The Beast's lawyer gets up and throws photos at me and yells, "Don't you think this looks like abuse? Like a handprint across his forehead and all those bruises on his back?" He shows me photos taken from an emergency room and the bruises are BAD. Like, all over his back. And he has what the lawyer says is a "handprint" on the side of his face. Kiddo looked NOTHING like that when we took him to daycare that morning. I am so mad, but I keep a calm face and said, "I don't know what child abuse looks like, but he didn't get that from our house." But I'm reeling from the images. I keep wondering how he could've gotten those bruises from our house. It just doesn't add up. My lawyer asked me a few things and that was about it. I am asked to wait outside again and I don't know what goes on. I'm on the phone with my mom, crying and mad. They all come out of the courtroom and The Beast's lawyer is talking to my FIL and Husby. He reaches out to shake my FIL's hand. My FIL just stands there and looks at his hand for what seemed like an eternity. It was VERY.AWKWARD. I had no idea what just happened and now my very southern, friendly FIL is just staring down this lawyer's hand. Everyone just stands there in shock. He finally reluctantly shakes his hand and The Beast and her posse leaves.
Husby fills me in after our lawyer, Husby, and FIL are all done talking. Turns out: Husby got REAMED from the judge for not calling DHS to find out the status, The Beast's lawyer found a social worker to testify that it looked like classic child abuse to her, and the judge had to call The Beast's lawyer off of Husby while questioning him. He was screaming and yelling and up in Husby's face. The judge said he wanted a supervised reunion between Kiddo and Husby at the DHS office with a DHS officer present. Then if that went well, we would resume normal visitation with Kiddo with SUPERVISION. The Beast agreed to let my FIL be the supervisor of our supervised visitation.
So basically, we were considered guilty.