after a brief consult with an infectious disease doctor who did not conduct any tests, my son and I were diagnosed by her alone, with a shared psychotic disorder she remembered from medical school. Despite the blood work results, scans, and cultures given to her with our initial paperwork, she belittled the doctors we had seen and their diagnoses, interrogated my son regarding my so-called mood swings, and called our medical history "crap". Disturbed by her bizarre demeanor, we left her office, after receiving our unfounded diagnosis, filed a complaint with the state medical board, and were subsequently turned into Child Protective Services for an alarming look into a very broken and scary system which haunted us for the next six months.
Month after month of Constitutional due process rights violations at every turn, moving to another county in the same state, lost dollars spent on legal fees that didn't get us an inch closer to justice we were about to encounter yet another CPS hearing to see how this new court investigator would paint the picture, in a county where the abuse/neglect allegations were proclaimed totally unfounded by one of their own social workers.
After previous hearings where I was denied putting my medical documentation, doctors' letters, and reports on the record and denied my testimony on the stand, my son and I waited in a secluded room to avoid the overwhelming perfumes and colognes which permeated the premises. My court appointed attorney came into the room asking, "Have you seen the report?" "No," I stated numbly as I lifted my head from my arms which rested on the table. She then handed me a copy of the court investigator's report stating that my son was thriving in my care and I was providing appropriate housing, education, and medical care. The fabrication had stopped! One person in a very broken system actually had it right! The report was later presented to the judge that day, and all parties asked that the jurisdiction be dropped. The judge granted the requests and thus we were finally free! Or were we?
I am still on a child abuse index and will remain there for ten years. If I am to ever work in my profession in the future, as a teacher, I will be denied working with children as long as my name remains on the index. Even when the first county had the report from our new county of residence stating the allegations were unfounded, the judge still took jurisdiction. The previous county had an agenda and the judge was biased about environmental illness. If I want to get off of the index it will take yet another lawyer, more legal fees, and more stress! There is only one lawyer to my knowledge, who has successfully challenged the index. Who should be held accountable for the loss of potential income? The reporting doctor? CPS? Both?
Another element of this ordeal is my appeal in the first county which is still pending. I am still waiting for my appeal lawyer to find the judge's decision was based on his personal or the county's agenda to shut down my pending worker's compensation case, or to prevent me from filing a case against the county on my son's behalf. However, how can my appeal lawyer prove these things when the transcripts have been changed? Who is to be held accountable for tampering with official documentation? Do I pursue another case? It's evident that many cases can develop out of one seemingly simply case.
What lessons did I learn? First and foremost, one must never go to a doctor with chronic symptoms unless referred by a trusted physician. Secondly, every parent in America needs to set up a legal standby guardianship today so no financial incentives prevail for any agency to intervene and take a child on unfounded grounds. Next, medical documentation is private and confidential and no school should convince/coerce any parent otherwise.
In addition, every parent should carry a pocket recorder everywhere to record any conversation which might be misconstrued later. This would include conversations /interviews with doctors, social workers, and lawyers. Check state codes for taping hearings/trials. Many people counseled me regarding this step and I didn't believe I needed to do it, however I have learned that their counsel was appropriate and needed.
Lastly, every parent and child should have an updated passport on hand. If our guaranteed Constitutional rights are not being recognized and upheld in this country, no matter the amount of energy, time, money is put forth to find justice, then one must contemplate alternatives. Align with like minded citizens and groups who promote Constitutional rights being upheld, and actively seek accountability from those who continue to abuse their positions of power.
In conclusion, my son and I did not ask for the environmental health consequences of asbestos exposure, gas leaks, water intrusion, mold exposure, chemicals injected in heating systems and other compromising exposures. None of us with chronic illness would ever wish to earn only a fraction of our earlier professional compensation, or to avoid going to places we used to frequent and socialize, to be forced to only eat certain foods, wear certain clothing, buy certain bedding, purchase specialized chemical free expensive products, and devote most of our energy just to surviving. Losing my career, my health, and my son's health was an extremely overwhelming life transition to deal with. But the thought of losing my son because of a doctor's unspoken agenda was outrageous and at times too much to handle. No mother in America should ever have to deal with this sort of legal persecution!