Sept. 2, 2013

Sunday August 5, 2013: 3:45pm - Listening to "My Immortal", by Evanescence

From Prison Dad by Robert Pezzeca (author's profile)

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JT Posted 10 years, 10 months ago. ✓ Mailed 10 years, 10 months ago   Favorite
When you write to the counselor, let her know that you want to offer what you can through letters. If the state has custody, then they can decide if you having some contact will be of help.

The truth of a 16 year old is that they probably won't be adopted. Though, sometimes it does happen.

Usually, they look for people that the child/teen has known in their life. There are a lot of mentors/friends/family that will step up if this is explored. Maybe that's some of what the counselor is trying to do? It's hard for me to tell.

If they don't go to a family, they will live in a group home with the intention of helping them learn skills they will need to live on their own.

Wherever she goes, let the counselor know what you can provide: support through letters. This is no small thing! Let her know that you will support whatever long term plan that they find that will help your daughter - and that you want to be a part of that in whatever way they deem safe/beneficial.

Ask her if you can send letters to her and that they can be used in therapy (this is a therapist?) If they don't know you, this is the safest thing (and they'll get to know you, too).

BTW, all states will request a TPR if the parents are unable to complete their case plan in 18 months (federal standard - they get money for this compliance). If you are locked up or not, the timeline is still 18 months.

Anyway, I'm writing this quickly. Write the counselor and let her know that you want contact, if it's helpful. Also let her know that if Krista is angry (and she might be) that you would like to let her know that you're sorry and that her anger/disappointment (whatever) is OK.

You are still VERY important in your daughter's life. Don't let that go, ok?


Robert Pezzeca Posted 10 years, 9 months ago.   Favorite
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JT Posted 10 years, 9 months ago. ✓ Mailed 10 years, 8 months ago   Favorite
You are in a reasonably good position - though there will be lots of other factors that will play into the decision. Some good (reasonable) some are just idiosyncratic - and may be related to who knows what.
But what is good is that the GAL and the therapist/counselor at the program are in your corner. They meet with the cps worker regularly and will pass along their opinion.

So it is important.

Some of the decision may depend on what's going on with your daughter (how she perceives your role). As I wrote, she may be angry (you don't need to feel bad about this - I know you do - but you are doing what you can NOW - that's important). And I'll give my 2cents about that.

If your daughter is angry - or disappointed, you should own that. Agree. But if you and s he have a relationship, don't take her anger on so much that you become wounded.

That's not helpful to her.

She needs to see/hear that people make mistakes, do the wrong thing, feel bad, learn from them, pick themselves up as best they can and move on.

That's the BEST lesson you can teach her. And that's just what she needs to learn, herself.


Robert Pezzeca Posted 10 years, 7 months ago.   Favorite
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JT Posted 10 years, 5 months ago. ✓ Mailed 10 years, 5 months ago   Favorite
If you have family that can be a support - a visiting resource - that might be enough. She will receive some support after she turns 18. In most states - If she is in school and wants to take college classes, for instance, she will get support. She will also get support if she wants to pursue a non degree program (you know, hair cutting). Or even community college.

Kids her age need folks to send cards and call. You may not have a relative who will take her in, but there might be someone who will fulfill that role.

As for not contacting you - she will be able to contact you directly, if she wants to. Kids are resourceful and she is nearly 18. You have this blog, for instance.

I don't know what she wants, at this point. But - for most teens, writing letters is hard. And she will be struggling with what happened in her life - and yours (why you went to prison is hard news and she has friends).

I wouldn't expect anything to her. I would tell her social worker that you would like to commit to writing every two weeks or once a month. Then send a short note. Just a simple one - no heavy emotional stuff. Tell her a funny story about your life - or talk about the weather. Just a page. Maybe a quote from someone that you like.

Keep in mind everything that you write here is easily (VERY easily) findable on the internet - it pops up with your name. So it will be read by everyone in the system, too. GAL and social worker.

All parents worry about 18 year olds. Remember that. There only so much ANY parent can do. I know if feels worse for you, but nothing in life is really all that different.

Take care

Robert Pezzeca Posted 10 years, 5 months ago.   Favorite
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JT Posted 10 years, 4 months ago. ✓ Mailed 10 years, 4 months ago   Favorite
There is only so much you can do.

Besides, it's ok to be angry and hurt. The truth is - there is much to be angry and hurt about. The problem is getting stuck in it - you know - really stuck. And you don't know that this will happen.

She has people around her to listen to her anger and hurt - AND her joy. Don't forget that. She's a teenager. I'm certain that everyday she ALSO laughs, jokes with friends, maybe even she has interests in 'special friendships' ;-).

She is her own person - growing into a woman. She will have to navigate this journey herself - this is true whether you were outside to help her - or not.

Stay focused on what you can do - because if you do everything you can - that really is enough. Does that make sense? If you give someone EVERYTHING that you can - it is ENOUGH. It is complete. You are offering all that you have - it may not feel like enough - and it might not be all you want to give - but in life when we offer ALL that we have - it really is enough.

Just be there and wait. Offer what you can and be satisfied that you have offered all of your love.

Robert Pezzeca Posted 10 years, 3 months ago.   Favorite
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