Bring Isabella Home

Hello.  My name is Patricia.

Six years ago, I gave birth to a beautiful little girl, Isabella.   Through a strained and abusive marriage, Isabella always remained happy when she was by Mommy's side, even when we struggled.  She never even called her father "Dad" until she was 4, but even now simply calls him Scott.  Scott and I separated many times (when he wasn't barricading me in the house) throughout our marriage, but I always went back to him, believing it was the best for Isabella.  

After I finally worked up the courage to sue for divorce, after the screaming, the threats, the "You'll never find anything better" and the "You're stuck because I have power over you" attitude that Scott always has, Bella and I moved away.  Scott responded by leaving all of our things in the rain.  Bella helped me pick them up.

After a while, Scott and I agreed: both parents should equally have Bella.  Since she wasn't in Kindergarten yet, we traded weeks, believing it was best for Bella.  After the second week, Isabella no longer wanted to go and would throw tantrums to avoid having to go to Scott.  Her reasoning?  "Scott's a bad man.  He smacks me."

...I took her anyway.  It would be wrong to keep her away from the other parent.  

Two days later, we got a call from Scott.  He needed our information so he could put Isabella in Daycare while he was at work.  I complied, and Scott stopped answering his texts, his phone calls, door knocks.  Then, on February 13, 2015, I was served with a Ex Parte Order of Child Protection for Isabella, loaded with absolutely whild accusations, some that couldn't be proven, some that could be disproven.  But the judge didn't seem to care that I could prove he was lying. There was nothing I could do.  I hired the only lawyer I could afford.

Isabella didn't see me for five months.  Scott was relentless.  Our lawyer would only hand us paperwork that he was receiving and telling us we had to do what they said, but made sure to take everything I had saved. We couldn't afford even him for another court date, so he dropped us.  Scott was granted full custody almost by default. I only get her every other weekend.  Bella still calls him Scott, and cries harder with each passing every-other-Sunday.

Sometimes she shows up with bruises that she can't explain.  They must be magical, because Child Protective Services told us it was wrong to use the child to take revenge on her father.

Times are hard for me.  Since the divorce, I began a relationship with a man I knew from school, and we have been together since.  Jake is on disability, due to deformities in his urinary tract when he was born, that have wonderfully blossomed into back pains, anemia, and a compromised immune system.   Isabella calls him Daddy Jakey and she is his world.  When she's here.

 My past with Scott has left me prone to severe anxiety attacks, among a multitude of other things I have doctors for... I can't work.  I'm trying so hard, but I can't keep a job any longer than a couple of months.  Scott made sure to take me to court again, because he felt $173/mo in Child Support wasn't enough to raise Isabella.  Now it's $243/mo.  I'm over $1,000 in debt.  

We can't afford a car, so making the court-appointed meeting place is sometimes difficult, but Scott has worked with us on that, actually offering to come to Cassville to help transport Bella.

Scott still ignores our phone calls.  I couldn't speak to Isabella for a week, even though I called every day (I have the call log to prove it).  So I called for a well child check-up, which I have a right to.  Scott's girlfriend threatened my life, and I was lectured to by the police for taking it seriously.  Scott apologized for the whole thing by calling me a "horrible mother" and a "piece of sh*t" over the phone.  

I still haven't talked to Bella.  This weekend is Mother's Day.  It is my weekend to have Isabella, and my holiday to have Isabella.  Last night I sent Scott a text message to confirm the meet at 7pm Friday, after my years of being threatened, accused, and insulted, this is the response I received:

"This is Scott. No. Like I said last night I'm done playing games. My daughter doesn't deserve to be treated the way you treat her!! If you want to come see her, YOU can provide the transportation. It was YOUR choice to violate the parenting plan you signed by moving to Exeter without the two month certified mail notice! It was your choice to continually violate the Parenting Plan by making me drive all the way to Cassville and now to Exeter because you don't have proper transportation for my daughter.
You may pick her up at her home at 7pm Friday and bring her home 5pm Sunday. I have FULL CUSTODY. Your failure to bring her back SAFELY and ON TIME will end up with me filing kidnapping charges. If you don't like these arrangements you are more than welcome to contact my attorney who has already been paid for and is eager to take you to court. I have not reduced your time, just made you responsible for transportation. 

You WILL NOT be getting extra time this summer so stop harrassing me about it!! 

This is a little girl, not something to play with whenever you feel like!!"


We need a lawyer, and we can't afford to consult one.  Please, someone... please help us.


James David Elliott 
Exeter, MO

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