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BM not giving SS his medicine a good case for custody change?

TheEvilStepmomStrikesBack's picture

My SS is 10 and he has ADHD. Not a seriously severe case but enough that it keeps him from focusing too well. He’s already repeated a grade and is on a path to fail this year. He should have been retained last year but he “passed” state testing, so his teacher bumped his grade to just passing.

He has the potential  to be a very intelligent child with either a whole lot of redirection or his medicine.  However BM has taken to not giving it to him. For the third time this school year (about 3 months), she stopped giving him his medicine. This leads to him not paying attention or being able to focus (even with one on one). She won’t change his diet, enroll him in any extracurricular activities, or anything that’s been suggested (which could possibly help him focus better) because that would mean she would actually have to get off her rear end and do something for him. Instead of helping him figure out his work, she gives him a calculator (in the 4th grade). So he can’t add large numbers, multiply or divide. He’s failing all his classes currently. 


When she lied her tail off in court 4 years ago that she wanted to help him do better in school (which magically  corresponded with us getting married) Admittedly he has behind, but he had just been diagnosed with ADHD and DH (who he was staying with. She left SS ther when she moved out). DH and the doctor were still working on getting the dosage right and learning about it, but there was a plan in place to help him. Well BM got him (because judges love crying moms right) and has done nothing for him academically at all. (For example they offer free tutoring at his school this year, she won’t take him because she doesn’t want to have to go pick him up even though she’s off by the time). 


Is her not not giving him his medicine irresponsible enough for a change in custody. Especially since he has a learning disability that depends on the medicine (or other actions to improve his focus and therefore his grades. He isn’t failing because he is is dumb or not trying. He’s failing because she’s willingly not giving him his medicine. 

simifan's picture

My SD was on seizure medication. One which was dangerous to take intermittently. BM lied her ass off in court, claimed our pill counts were off, she had additional meds, etc. Court stated we couldn't prove she wasn't giving them. ExDH finally had to have the doctor take her off the medication. I wouldn't count on it making a difference in the court.

TheEvilStepmomStrikesBack's picture

Oh wow!!! I'm sorry to hear that. Our situation isn't that bad but I can relate to a certain extent. At the end of the day, we just want him to have a chance. 

tog redux's picture

Probably not going to make a difference, unfortunately. It's not a safety issue and you'd need a lot of testimony from people who can say that he's being harmed by not getting his medication.   And as stated above, you'd have to prove she wasn't giving it to him (and not just by his behavior).

Courts have to have a lot of evidence to make custody changes.

Ispofacto's picture

We got dumbass Voldemort to admit via email that she was not following doctor's orders regarding Killjoy's asthma, and in court Voldemort testified that the reason Killjoy missed a lot of school was due to *unexplained* wheezing and respiratory problems.

She's a genius, that one.

In your case you'd probably have to get expert (doctor) in-person testimony that SS needs the meds to focus in school, and would most likely struggle in school if not receiving the medicine.  Paired with baiting your idiot BM into admitting "i'm not medicating him because he doesn't need it", like ours did, and failing grades, and no effort at tutoring, and possibly getting no parental assistance in completing his homework, you might have a case.

Sometimes a GAL can talk to doctors for you so you don't have to have in-person testimony, and the GAL will make a recommendation to The Court after reviewing everything.  SS could admit to the GAL to not taking his medicine, and/or not getting help with his schoolwork.



TheEvilStepmomStrikesBack's picture

Oh I don’t communicate with BM at all anymore. Not worth the brain cells I lose when I talk to her. She talks a good game, just never follows through. Change is coming though. I feel it! 

Rags's picture

I would advise DH to file for a change of custody and take every bit of information that you have, get it before a judge, and outline what you are looking for and why.

Find a killer attorney who will work toward  your desired goal.

It may work, it may not work. However, nothing will change unless you take a shot.

Good luck.

TheEvilStepmomStrikesBack's picture

I keep immaculate records of these types of things. Hopefully it’s enough if/when we go back to court. 


Rags's picture

Document, document, document. 

We always went to court with reems of data.  The SpermClan would go in with nothing. We always won. 

However, I always left family court feeling like I needed to take a boiling hot shower with Brillow pads.  It is such a skeevy process.

completely overwhelmed's picture

About 6-7 years ago when my DH was trying to prove BM was unfit, he tried to argue in court about BM not taking her meds and BM not properly caring for SD (not making meals, no bed time).

At that point, it just seemed like BM was depressed and irresponsible. So the judge made it clear that DH needed to do everything possible to facilitate a relationship between his daughter and BM including him sending a bag of frozen meals with SD so there would be food at BM's home.

It wasn't until BM had an overdose that the judge got serious and she lost pretty much all access to SD. So, unless your at that point the court system wants the responsible parent to do whatever it takes to prop up the irresponsible parent.