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Case closed…

The last six weeks have been rather difficult – that is to say in places absolutely gut churningly terrible and unremittingly awful but the good news is that things are, in some respects, now starting to look up

I can’t go into all the details because not everything has played out yet but I do want to try and explain what has been going on

Six weeks ago, totally out of the blue, we received a call from social services to say that they need to come to the house IMMEDIATELY along with a paediatrician to inspect our baby

Over time we have found out that a medical professional that had never seen our baby had made allegations that we had intentionally harmed him and pointed to bruising on his leg as evidence of this

Except that bruise is a birthmark

A particular low point was having to call my parents, distraught, to say that we had to take him to an emergency medical late on a Friday night and to ask that if social services wanted to take action to take the children away to ask them if they would step in and care for them

The medical concluded that the birthmark was a birthmark and that there were no signs of abuse

Over the following days we had to go through an investigation by social services – our house was inspected, all of our children interviewed and their bedrooms inspected, we were even asked about our relationship, careers, lifestyle – it was incredibly intrusive and upsetting, especially when you consider that Littlest was less than 3 weeks old

Our beautiful, new baby-mooning, learning to be a family of 5 bubble was well and truly burst

The good news is that the case against us has now been closed with no evidence of any risk to our children

The wonderful thing we have learnt over these weeks is how blessed we are with a network of family and friends who have jumped to help and support us

The bad news is that this is not finished

It was interesting for us to discover that AIMS (the association for improvements in maternity services) cites the following in a press release about false child abuse allegations being made by NHS staff

“We believe these [allegations] are being used as a pre-emptive strike, and as a punishment, when mothers complain”, says Jean Robinson, Hon. Research Officer, and a former member of the GMC’s Professional Conduct Committee

Except we haven’t yet complained, despite the issues I have blogged about previously

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27 comments to Case closed…

  • I’m completely speechless. How utterly, utterly awful for you. X

  • Holy moly, what an horrific thing to be put through. I am so sorry that this happened to you. Big love x

  • Jem

    How bloody awful.

    I get that they’re insanely OTT about these things because of the kids who’ve slipped under the radar but HOW on earth did this take 6 weeks to resolve when there was no evidence AT ALL? Crikey. So sorry to hear you’ve had to go through that.

  • Ben

    Holy shit. I did wonder what was going on but would never have guessed this. Just mental and if was to preempt your complaints is too scary to believe.

  • Absolutely disgusting, I can’t believe you’ve been subjected to such a horrendous ordeal. So sorry and hope that you can now put it aside to deal with later, and get your bonding started.

  • So glad you and your family have come out the other side, stronger.
    So sorry, at a time so special, you and your family have been through this and had such special time tainted.
    I hope you manage to get it to a quick conclusion, and get to spend your valuable mat leave bonding and getting to know your precious addition rather than distracted by this. xx

  • Oh my goodness. I’m so sorry you had to go through that. Take care x

  • Hannah, unbelievable that you had to go through this. I hope it hasn’t completely tainted what should have been such a special time for the five of you. I hope you can put it behind you now. Keep on muddling along. xxx

  • Am gutted for you Hannah, hope you can put it behind you and enjoy your beautiful family x

  • Can’t begin to imagine how awful this has been for you. Xx

  • Oh good grief. How utterly awful for you. I hope that the situation can be finally resolved and you can get on with spending time enjoying your children.

  • Oh my god thats so shocking and just truly truly awful. Im so sorry you had to go through all of that x

  • That is just stunningly awful. How in heaven’s name do they get it so wrong? And there’s no comeback for all the anguish they put an innocent new mother through, not to mention the affect it must have on your kids having someone intrude like that.
    Utterly speechless
    Sending you much much love. Hope you can move on and love that baby x

  • My goodness, how awful. Unbelievable. So pleased that it’s all over. Hope you’re back on an even keel soon – you must be completely shaken up. x

  • Oh Hannah, I am so sorry. That must have been six weeks of sheer hell for all of you.

  • Helena

    This is horrendous. I’m glad they’ve come to the right conclusion but still shouldn’t have happened.

  • What a horrendous experience, I’m so glad you had supportive friends and family around you, what a terrible thing to endure. I hope you can put it behind you now, dreadful. Love to you xxx

  • Oh my God, how absolutely awful for you all. I can’t believe you have been subjected to such outrageous treatment. Surely once they discovered the ‘bruise’ was a birthmark that should have been the end of it (not that it should have ever come to be an issue in the first place).

    I’m so disgusted for you.

  • BNM

    Having had a visit by social services because someone thought we weren’t looking after our kids, I can totally sympathize as to how it feels to be judged. The anonymous call they had received (found out who it was) just made it worse. You are not a bad parent and am outrageous that a birthmark can be misjudged so. I understand that they have to follow everything up but sometimes explaining to the children what is happening is worse than one call to you the parent!

    BNM

  • Unbelievable. I don’t know about the UK, but social services is understaffed and overworked out here. You’d think they’d have better things to do than traumatise a family with a newborn. I’m outraged for you. Glad you’ve come out stronger and that you have people who can support you and vouch for you but really sorry you had to go through it at all.

  • How awful for you! I am so glad it is over and you can put it behind you. How can someone make an allegation like that without even seeing the baby?

  • Oh Hannah 🙁 what a desperately horrid thing to endure. Truly hope you can put it all behind you now and get back to enjoying your babies xx

  • I never expected this to be the cause of the worry, so awful, shocking and wrong, it’s scary that this can happen. I mean surely, if the “bruise” turns out to be a birthmark that should have sorted all, and to have to go through all of this, it’s criminal. Have you seen the dispatches film on parents whose kids were taken away but it’s likely they suffered from early form of rickets? It’s enfuriating that such injustices can happen, and now with the guardian for every child, I’m rather worried that more stuff like this may happen. I really hope this is the end of the worry and that you have an avenue for redress for all the upset caused.

  • Truly I have been living in a cave – HB I am very sorry not to have sent you congrats, and now to hear about this. Same thing happened to me in A & E several years ago. Eldest, then 11 months, slipped over some DVD’s at a friend’s house and landed mouth first on a sharp corner. After I had been there for about 5 hours, a very “understanding” young Australian paediatrician came to DS’s bedside, offered me a cup of tea, held my hand and asked, innocently, “Are you tired?”. “Yes” I answered – which was then enough “evidence” for her to decide that I had deliberately harmed my child. The next 5 hours were spent in a blur of answering questions, reports being written up and senior consultant paediatricians subjecting my son to yet more examinations …. Grrr.

  • Oh my goodness Hannah! Like Sigrid, I’m not sure where I’ve been but I am so sorry you were put through this xxx

  • […] the distant past, before of all of what my mother calls ‘The Troubles‘, I think I was fairly laid back with Littlest – admittedly I’d managed to forget […]

  • […] midwifery team (who had attended us and left after her unprofessional behaviour stopped my labour) referred us to social services, accusing us of violently harming him – having never seen him. We were forced to present him […]

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