Help for Baby I

I don't normally get directly involved when it comes to counseling fathers on how to go about going after custody. I will listen and act as an outlet for venting. Here is the instance where I have to draw a line in the sand!

This beautiful little girl ( we will call her Baby I) and her siblings are, in my opinion,  in DANGER !
 I have done all I can to remain neutral and allow our "system" to take care of the problem. Child protective services are aware of the situation and have made no visible effort to investigate so I am now doing something I swore I never would do, I am getting directly involved.

The father in this case is a very loving dad. I know we all say that, but this man is no dead beat. He has put himself in grievous financial peril in order to make sure his daughter is SAFE! 

As he is currently seeking suitable employment for a court enforced 50/50 joint order until a custody hearing is completed he has fallen so deep in a financial hole that he cannot make ends meet. Due to the fact that he has been a seasonal worker he makes most of his money in the winter time. when legal aid ran his numbers they told him he made too much money in the beginning of the year.  The child's mother lives off child support for her older two  and child tax and seems to have a sideline of some sort (part time work? ) as she always seems to be doing quite well, yet she qualifies for a legal aid attorney.

I have witnessed her total lack of interest in co-parenting the children. I actually saw the texts she sent the father of this child saying if he didn't acquire a child seat he could not take Isabelle for his custodial week. He called me and asked if we could talk. When I found out I went and purchased him a proper seat for the child and went with him to pick her up. Due to weather conditions and poor roads and the fact that he had to wait for me to pick him up he was two hours late. She belittled him in front of her mothers employees and her mother in a very public venue (her mother is a manager of a grocery store ). She and her mother swore at him, said he was creating drama and making things difficult. had she allowed him the use of the car seat this late pickup time wouldn't have occurred. She said loudly enough that I could hear her about twenty meters away that he should stop playing games and trying to make her look bad. She said she never said she told him he had to get his own seat (remember I saw the texts myself).
The two of them had no idea I was standing back observing the entire interaction and the fact that they continually aggravated the situation buy criticizing his ability to be a good parent, but also his inability to be a man. It was absolutely horrific to observe. She did everything she could to garner a reaction in public. This was not a new tactic. I actually talked to her when Isabelle's parents were still together just a while before she was born. I asked where they were going, she was dropping Isabelle's dad off because he was being a drama queen. She was on her way on a two hour trip in order to force her older children's father to travel an extra two hours to get his kids because "he pissed me off".  This is standard operating procedure for her!

For all of her constant verbal cutting of this man in public he never once pointed out what I observed at quick glance. It was cold out and Isabelle had no socks on , she had a huge bruise on her forehead and was completely underdressed for the conditions. The "mother" had done everything to hamper the exchange of the child.  Her father immediately took her to the hospital in the community where he lives on his arrival home. The doctor stated in a written record that this wasn't a falling down bump a toddler gets while learning to walk. It was the size and shape of a coffee cup.... let that sink in for a minute...... this child is just a year old...

As they are currently in the beginning of a custody battle I cannot and will not mention names or give out specific details. I will say this however, Child protective services is doing nothing to keep these children safe. I have been privy to several videos of her antics , and they are deplorable. I also witnessed one occurrence in particular that raised serious concern and that was what finally broke my resolve to stay uninvolved . The sad fact is, if any of  the videos could be entered into evidence in court she would lose those children immediately. Unfortunately for these kids their mother has a very expensive legal aid attorney who specializes in taking children away from their fathers. She is trying to make this person a victim in the eyes of the court. Baby I's dad can't afford a lawyer and is in danger of loosing his home because of the hellish relationship he was in with this woman. I have seen the evidence on him of physical abuse , although I have never witnessed it. I have witnessed first hand her antics and have see up close her lifestyle choices.

Baby I's dad is a doting and  father and a loving , tolerant mate. He took to her older two kids and loved them as his own , supported them and nurtured them from day one.

 I have seen this man torn apart , cheated on and mentally abused and his biggest loss of composure was to sit in front of my house and sob because he couldn't understand why he was being treated as he was. I am trying to get him to take some professional counseling . He shows all the classic signs of battered spousal syndrome and at times I speculate he has suffered some larger trauma thanks to the instability of his former partner.

Through all of that he still manages to take care of that little girl, love on her and try his best to move forward.

This is where we come to the hard part for any man....

Isabelle's dad needs help to get a lawyer and to catch up on his payments. Due to the fact that in order to meet his obligations outlined in the court order, his employment prospects have been few and he has fallen behind trying to give his baby girl a decent life.

This fund will allow Isabelle an opportunity for a better life, a decent home and a safe environment to grow up in. It is a fund that we hope to use to help him get custody of his child and repair the damage that has been done to his family.

This isn't a handout, but a hand up. My plan and he is in agreement is to use this fund to work his case and use it as an example of what we can accomplish as a group. once his expenses are covered I plan to use excess funds to continue and pay it forward. There are so many dads out there that struggle daily just for visitation and are denied by a corrupt ineffective system that is antiquated in its ability to judge family law fairly.

This won't be just one little girl, possibly her siblings ( if CPS ever does their job) ,  and her dad that will be helped. the long term is to set it up to help other struggling dads out there to be the parents, the men and the nurturers that they need to be!

Thanks so much for your time and patience to read through this. No amount is too small. We have until the 30th of November to help Isabelle's dad save her home. The date for setting trial is on the 14th of November and if we could have a retainer and a buffer put together by that time it would be a first step on a journey to safety for Isabelle and so many kids like her.

A little bit is great a lot is better, but no amount is ever too small!

Thanks again,



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Darcy Foster 
High Prairie, AB
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