It is with a heavy heart that I share the news of my dear friend's 3 month old son being taken out of her arms by the sheriffs department at their home the morning of February 4th. She was unexpectedly served with legal paperwork and accused of being an unfit mother by the father of her son, whom had no legal rights or proof of being the father.
He used the courts to gain control over her child and get the upper hand in custody under false pretenses.
Her baby was diagnosed with Bronchitis and RSV and was still nursing around the clock as many babies do when he was taken out of her hands and placed into emergency custody of his father with not as much as one ounce of breast milk to support him after being taken that morning. When a family member delivered all her stored breastmilk for the baby to the father, he threw it away and said he was better off on formula.
She met the father of her baby in high school, they lost touch and reconnected 9 years ago after he contacted her on Facebook. He quickly began pursuing a relationship with her shortly after.
He was a good friend over the years waiting for his opportunity to date her. He pursued her even while pregnant and dating another man. Despite her not being interested in a romantic relationship, he remained a consistent presence of support in her family life with her kids, he has watched her children, taken their family places and has been incredibly generous, building up her trust to finally open up her heart and see him in a different light.
Last fall 2017, they finally began to date and as many couples they enjoyed one another but also disagreed, she saw a completely different side of him. Nevertheless, they stayed together and became pregnant in the spring of 2018. She was so scared because she was in the same situation AGAIN, out of wedlock and pregnant with another baby – she humbly admits she was mad at herself for putting herself in a position of desiring marriage and a family so much that it forwent love, honor and obedience to God and had a new life growing in her tummy. Her fears intensified into horror when the father of her child did not want the baby and wanted to terminate life.
In the middle of arguments for him to not want their baby’s life and still hoping he would want to raise the child with her as a unit, The father of her child wrote a check for the cost of an abortion and some additional money which felt somewhat of a “pay off” for the inconvenience and drove away with his last words being “I’m sorry, for whatever it’s worth” – she didn’t see or speak to him for several weeks.
In crisis, alone, in the difficult situation she helped to create she really fought for what was right versus what was easy. It would have been “easy” to do the unspeakable in the moment, but God held on tight to her heart and to the life of her baby and she forewent the abortion and decided that she would trust God would pave the way for her and her child’s life.
Before her next prenatal appointment, she decided to seek peace and pursue it with the baby’s father, even though her inclination was to keep him out and away because of how hurt she was. But she knew it was not fair to the baby so she reached out and invited him to the baby’s next appointment.
They tried to rekindle their relationship. It was good at first and became challenging shortly after. As her tummy grew and the pregnancy was nearing the end, she was hoping for a closer relationship and commitment, but he continued with one foot in, one foot out. They were fighting frequently and causing one another a lot of hurt. Sawyer Jack was born on November 9th, 2018 via c-section.
Right after the birth they seemed to operate smoothly, together as a “family” with the rest of the kids who he instead think and refer to him as a step dad, but this began to disintegrate over the coming weeks.
Perhaps it was the sleep depravation that comes with a newborn or the disappointment of feeling unwanted and being put last, or his desire to be independent and free that brought everything to a head. Their fighting intensified. Throughout the pregnancy she was noticing he would recite their arguments via text message as if documenting, but she didn’t think anything of it and didn’t think to do the same, mostly because she didn't build cases against people she loved.
So, February 1, 2019 the father of her child left her house for an “emotional break” to which she responded with anger and disbelief, she felt abandoned, (as I mentioned earlier) their baby had RSV and bronchitis and she has 3 other kids, she needed help and he was leaving to go to a basketball game and spend time with his sister. That weekend he was communicating with her and even invited her to the game while her mom generously insisted she get out with the father of her child – an invitation he quickly rescinded and extended to his sister in a matter of minutes, she was hurt and rejected and didn’t hold back any emotions and how hurt it made her feel.
The following Monday, February 4th early in the morning the Sheriffs were at her door taking Sawyer and putting him into protective custody of his dad with no legal proof.
She was so in shock that they wanted to take her baby, she begged and pleaded to at least change and nurse him before they would take him, they were hesitant, rushing her so she did what she could, she sat down and nursed her son for the last time as the authorities stood and watched. And then she watched her other three children go into crisis mode as their little brother was “taken” away from them. In addition to taking full custody of Sawyer, the father secured keeping her away by placing a restraining order against her making it illegal and prosecutable for her to make any contact with him to see her son.
There was no due process – no one investigated her, no one looked into the accusation or her track record as a parent or her character. The father of her baby had audio recordings of her and her children over a 7 month period, he filed pages of accusations, information he had been collecting since they rekindled a relationship on every fight and argument, put it on paper, with major over exaggerations and made a case to take their child from her completely.
At this point in the legal battle, she's outspent and out lawyered. She tried to hire any lawyer for an emergency motion to reverse the custody, which was denied right away.
Her next hearing is Wednesday, she has retained a new aggressive attorney who is very expensive. For those of you new to family court, it’s all about who your attorney is in these cases versus what they can actually prove. So she had to go with the best she could find.
With this said, she knows she's not a lot of things, she hasn't made the best decisions, especially related to her relationships with significant others, but I do KNOW, that She has taken every baby God gave her and given them her all. She is a single mom who provides for physical, emotion and spiritual needs of her children, she guards them with her whole life in all situations and always has and she has never and would never harm a child. And that is the truth.
So, here is my ask for you today:
Today, I stand and ask for prayer for mercy from God, justice from the justice system for unlawfully taking her baby away and to ask you for your hand of support and generous hearts in legal and court fees as she steps in to this unwanted legal battle of getting her baby boy back. Having him as a son is a privilege and responsibility which she takes on fully.
My huge ask is to please help her in fighting for her baby and contribute to raise the money to help cover the legal fees for her baby to return back to her, his mom who loves him and fought for his life from the start. Would you join me in fighting a battle she cannot fight by herself and on behalf of Sawyer who cannot speak for himself.
Contention among parents should not be grounds for taking a mother’s child.