> No More Secrets And Lies: I Call an Ombudsman

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

I Call an Ombudsman

Next I called an ombudsman and told her about Mary's case. She also seemed concerned and wanted to talk to Mary's mother before she would recommend anything. I gave her Karen's phone number (Mary's mother) and waited a couple of days for her to call me back. When I didn't hear back, I called her and asked her if she had contacted Karen and what she had decided to do about Mary's case. She said she had contacted her, but had now changed her mind and didn't think it was important to do anything at this point. She thought it would be best if she just left Mary's case alone. I asked her why she had changed her mind and she said something like, "I just don't think it's a good idea to get involved in your daughter's case at this time." She was vague about her reasons.

I thought: This is just great. Karen probably said something about me or, who-knows-what, to get this woman to stop looking into Mary's case. She had done this before, many times, with nearly every teacher, doctor, therapist, coach, or friend the girls had. If she got to them before I did, she would poison them against me. This became so common that I expected it and knew I would have to straighten things out with these people who worked with my children, and try to convince them I wasn't the person they had been told I was. I never knew for sure what they had been told about me. And I never knew if they ever really believed me after I tried to set the record straight. This is a terrible thing to have to think about when you're visiting with your daughter's teacher or therapist. But I had gotten used to it.

After the ombudsman told me she wasn't going to look at Mary's case, I called Karen to ask her what she had said to her. I didn't think she would tell me, but I asked her anyway, and she told me the following:

"John, I told her it was a big waste of time for her to get involved in Mary's case."

The ombudsman dropped Mary's case and did nothing more with it, and that was the end of that. Then I wrote in my journal again:

A Waste of Time? — September 2008
  • A waste of time that Mary has been moved over twenty times in two years?
  • A waste of time that she has had no consistent plan?
  • A waste of time that her educational needs are being neglected?
  • A waste of time that she doesn't know what grade she is in?
  • A waste of time that she hasn't had any therapy for her sexual trauma?
  • A waste of time that she hasn't had any treatment?
  • A waste of time that she has no relationship with any therapist, or anyone?
  • A waste of time that she has nightmares and sexual abuse symptoms?
  • A waste of time that she is lacking any stability or permanence in her life?
  • A waste of time that she keeps getting placed further and further from her home?
  • A waste of time that there is no follow-through from placement to placement?
  • A waste of time that her mental health needs haven't been addressed?
  • A waste of time that her workers have lied to us multiple times?
  • A waste of time that she has been abused and is acting out and no one knows how to help her

-->  All my efforts to help Mary were being blocked — blocked with Dr. Oberstar, blocked with the State, blocked with the ombudsman. I couldn't even get my representative to do anything to help Mary.

Note: I called my representative recently (Sept 2012), and she gave me information to help me address my concerns. - John


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