Autumn

Autumn

Friday, June 29, 2012

For Your Support

I want to thank each and everyone of you, my kind friends, for your support and words of encouragement as we dealt with our family problems. It shames me that I've even bothered you good people.

This will be the last post in which I will mention my grandchild, Little Bit. I must sadly report she has been lost to us for the foreseeable future. I will not reveal the details as I'm sure I've tried you patience far too much with this sadness.

The bigger shame is how the Florida state government doesn't recognize the rights of grandparents.

It's been a very sad day. Our hearts ache.


Stephen

136 comments:

  1. Sorry, it went against you today.

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    1. I'm sorry too, but will continue to keep you in our families prayers and thoughts.

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    2. Thank you both very much...

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  2. I am sorry, needless to say, but would expect nothing less from our Collectivist government. May it go down in flames and swiftly.

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  3. I'm sorry buddy
    Governments suck

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  4. I'm a big ol' biker but I'm crying now. I'm am so sorry for the way the state has wronged you. You who have provide a safe haven for this wonderous child, you who have provided love, teaching, moral support and guidance.

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  5. Stephen,

    You have not tried anyones patience, we are all here to support you in any way we can.
    I understand if you don't want to share more details, but I'm confused. You said they don't give Grandparents rights, but what happened to birth mother's rights?
    Wasn't that why all this went down in the first place?
    Again, please don't share if you don't want to.
    You will be in my prayers, as always.

    Keangnt

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    1. As far as the birth mother's rights...well, after the attorney told her she might, just might, be ordered to pay child support, a very small amount, after she was granted visitation, she packed in the middle of the night and fled. Crushed us. After we laid out almost six thousand dollars in lawyer fees, apartment rental, and other expenses. When she left she basically granted sole custody of Little Bit to her father. Since Florida doesn't recognize grandparents rights - we lost too.

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    2. Wow, just wow... I don't even know what to say to that.
      Please understand that we all feel like extended family to you, and again, if if helps you to talk about it, we're listening. Who knows, perhaps one of us has some bright idea which will help. It does take a village. (even if it is a virtual village)chuckle.
      We can only pray that your son sees the error or his ways and allows little bit back into your lives.
      You will never be considered anything less than one of the finest men I've ever known.
      You are in our thoughts.

      Keangnt

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  6. Sorry Steven, I know it hurts a lot

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    1. Thank you, kristine, it sure does hurt...bless you.

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  7. I don't know what to say my friend, except that your sadness will never try your friend's patience. So if venting it here helps in the slightest please do.

    We will continue to keep you, your wife, and little bit in our prayers.

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    1. Thank you, my good friend. Your kind words surely help. Your prayers are always welcomed and appreciated.

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  8. So sorry. I found it heartwarming that people like you and Sweet Wife exist in this world. Will continue prayers for you both, and for Little Bit.

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  9. I agree with Keangnt. You haven't tried our patience in the least way.

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    1. Bubba, I can't help but feel I've tried all you kind folks patience. Guess I just feel less than a man...this truly hurts. My heart is gone. Thank you, my kind friend.

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  10. Stephen
    I agree with the other posters in that you have not tired our patience. I have been hoping things turned out in your favor.
    I find that something Winston Churchall said when he once faced a terrible time helps me, perhaps it will be of some help to you.
    "Success is not final. Failure is not final. It is the courage to continue that counts."
    I wish you the courage to continue to fight for the right to be part of your grandchilds life.

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    1. Anon, trust me, I have a lot of fight left in me. The direction of my fire just isn't plain at the moment. Thank you so much for the kind words...God bless.

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  11. It's just not right, you two love that child & she loves you! That should make it right to have you two in her life!

    Knowing how much my FIL (& MIL) love our neice, I can only imagine what WE would do if MIL & FIL (Gan & Pappa), weren't able to see her.

    So sorry. You haven't tried my patience in the least, I was only hoping for the best & the right thing to be done - dammit!

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    1. Thanks, my lovely friend. This has truly ripped out our hearts. Bless you.

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    2. I'll say it again ,,,, dammit! This just isn't right, grandparents have rights! Sometimes, more rights than the parents (& birth parante) because of all the right reasons ... dammit!

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  12. I'm so sorry. I know how much this pains you and Sweet Wife. I am so very sorry. I can only imagine how hurt Lil Bit is, as well. It's just a shame your son doesn't see the one he is really hurting is his daughter.

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    1. Mermaid, you've hit the nail on the head...he has hurt Little Bit far worse than he has us...she suffers.

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    1. Thanks for the hug, Anne. It means a lot to me.

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  14. Phyllis (N/W Jersey)June 29, 2012 at 9:11 PM

    Steven and Sweet Wife you have given Little Bit the greatest gift of all. Love. That love will always be with her and nothing will ever be able to take it away. My heart aches because you I know what you are going through. Please know that you and your family will continue to be in my prayers.

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    1. Thank you for the kind comment, sweet Phyllis.

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  15. I am really, really sorry to hear that. Not really much I can say.

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    1. Truthfully, russell, not much I can say either. Thank you.

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  16. Ours ache with you. But don't give up.

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  17. I can only imagine your heartache, and am so sorry. I will continue to lift you up in prayer.

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    1. Much appreciated, my friend. Thank you.

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  18. Our prayers and support will continue on your behalf. God bless you all and don't give up hope.

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    1. Thanks, Swamp Dog. God bless you and yours too.

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  19. Stephen,
    Damn....damn.....damn!!!!
    The court system is so screwed up. I'm so sorry to hear the state did not honor and recognize your Grand Parents rights. Don't give up hope, some where down the line the other parent(father) will come to his senses. I will keep you, Sweet Wife and Little Bit in my prayers.

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    1. The state of Florida ruled grandparents rights unconstitutional. We never had a chance...thanks, Sandy.

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  20. Nothing to say that has not been said. A friend is never a bother, we will all be here now and well into the future. I am also confident Little Bit will hold you two in her heart until you are again free to share her life.

    Bill

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    1. We pray she doesn't forget us...thanks, my good friend.

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  21. My heart goes out to you. Having been cut off from one of my grandchildren for a time was the toughest time of my life. Things are much better now.

    Don't lost hope.

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    1. We pray our son has a change of heart in the years to come. It's our only hope. Thank you, my friend.

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  22. Dear One,

    You and your sweet wife and Little Bit have my deepest and warmest love sent your way. I will continue to pray that you ALL are blessed with the strength to endure this.

    I know that every situation is different but there was a time that my father kept me from his mother/my gramma. While it did hurt me greatly, I did find my way back to her and was able to have a great relationship with her.

    Please continue to "write" to Little Bit, expressing your love for her, even if it is in a hand written journal. Because she will see it someday and KNOW it was NOT your doing and that you have always loved her and wanted what is best for her.

    This blog/journal and if you continue with a hand written journal WILL mean the world to her later. (I can understand not writing on here anymore about her)

    I will also pray that God softens her fathers heart towards you and realizes just how devastating this is for her.

    I'm so sorry ya'all have to go through this.

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    1. Kellie, to write hurts. Thank you so very much for the kind thought...it'll take me a while to recover. But, I will.

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  23. my heart goes out to you stephen.i would expect nothing less from a corrupt and biased court system.i am a grandfather also so i can relate to your pain right now...god bless you and sweet wife.

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    1. Bless you, duane, you indeed understand. Many of us grandparents belong to the club of ripped hearts. Thank you.

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  24. Family court and legislation is simply evil. The government has no place in the family's business. Sorry things are going in the wrong direction and why any parent would try and keep the grandparents out of their children's lives is beyond me.

    I hope things improve for you and the wife and lil bit.

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    1. Thank you, my friend. Indeed, and I agree.

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  25. Still praying for a miracle. God changed a certain pharaoh's mind. Your son is small potatoes in comparison.

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    1. Mrs. S., dear one, thank you. His day will come and God will deal with him in due time.

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  26. Stephen,

    Friends never try one anothers patience in matters of the heart. They stand together and face the trials as one. So many hearts are here for you and your wife. Don't even think otherwise...ever. Little Bit knows how much you both love her. she will find her way back to you in time. I agree with Kellie...it is so important that you continue to journal for Little Bit, especially handwritten. Years from now, holding your handwritten thoughts and letters to her will mean so much. Meanwhile we all pray with and for you, sweet wife and your son to see his mistake. All our love and prayers.

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    1. Thank you, my sweet friend. Yes, both you and Kellie make good points....but, it's just so hard to sit and write to her or about her when I know I shall not be in her presence tomorrow or the next day...not be able to hold her in my arms and hear her little voice call out to me. It hurts. I'll need to wait a while before I continue to write to or about her. Even now, to type these words, kills my soul.

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  27. If you had been trying our patience, we wouldn't have been hanging on your every word and heartache. While the courts are run by shortsighted fools, I'm sure your anger is just being misdirected at this point and not putting it where it belongs. Directly on the flat head of Little Bits mommy.

    Stud's daughter did the very same thing. When she deserted her children and was ordered to pay $35 per month, she TOTALLY disappeared.

    Now Stud has lost his worthless daughter AND two precious grandchildren who are being passed around like a blunt at a kegger.

    YOU ARE NOT ALONE....but Little Bit is. SO SAD. But she WILL reach out to you as soon as she can. That's what Stud's grandkids did the minute they had his phone number memorized.

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    1. Dear, my anger is extremely focused...Sweet Wife just asked me if I 'was okay?' I looked at her and said, "No, I'm not okay. I want to hurt, something." So, I guess you're correct. My anger is misdirected. I haven't as yet acted on my feelings and should indeed hurt, something....
      Thank you, dear lady.

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  28. My heart so hurts for you, Sweet Wife and Little Bit. Sad to say but i do believe something will happen to/with your son and life will be full of sunshine once again. I will pray for the sunshine daily!

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    1. Anon, thank you and I agree, something somehow will happen to my son and his evil wife for their deceit.

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  29. I'm sad that the birth mother proved herself unreliable and irresponsible.

    I'm even more saddened that you think you're being burdensome. We come here to read you, support you, share with you, and we will rejoice with you when you have her back. Through thick or thin, until you decide to stop, we're right here with you and Sweet Wife.

    I hesitate to mention this, because it so often causes more problems than it solves, but if she's losing weight and not being properly cared for maybe it's time to consult with DSS? Perhaps they'll take better care of her if they know they're being watched.

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    1. Thanks for the support, my dear friend. It mean a lot to us. DCF made a thirty second house call on them and of course, the evil step-mother talked her way out of the jam and they moved on...
      On the birth mother...we took a gamble and lost. Shame, as she was our last prayer.

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  30. we have been through similar circumstances, and are praying for time to touch your son's heart. I truly believe that there will come a time when this will pass..he will need some help and you and Sweet Wife will be the ones he calls. Right now he is angry ...but it will cool down. Just know that we care and you are in our hearts and prayers.

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    1. Thank you, TT...all communication has been cut. My wife tried to call him this past week. He called the police and had them call her and they said he complained his mother had made a harassment call and to not phone, email, or text him in the future. She made the call to say 'happy birthday, I love you.'

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  31. NOOOO. ah, bloody ...
    i am so very sorry to read this. may murphy put down the stick now and better luck follow.

    sir, you have not 'tried our patience' in any way, shape, or form. you have reached out to the village for support which is what we can and do offer.

    please keep writing, for little bit and yourself.

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  32. I am sorry for you, as I understand what that precious little girl means to you.

    It's times such as this where back in olden days a few good men would gather together and make things right.

    Now we have lawyers.

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    1. Amen, my friend. Twenty-five or so years ago I'd have broken down his door and kicked his young butt and taken my grandchild. Now, I'd be locked up for thirty years if I did indeed kick down his door. Damn shame. Thanks, my friend.

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  33. I have not read any of the replies, but you know my feelings. 24/7/365, Leave no one behind.

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  34. I'll be praying that what is best for Little Bit will be realized in the heart before it has to play out further in the courts. Such a sweet child and such loving Grandparents deserve each other.

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    1. Any further court action is done, I'm afraid. It's over. Thanks, my dear friend.

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  35. Don't know what to say but, Damn...Keep the faith.

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  36. I know I am usually more of a lurker, but this has brought pain to my heart. You are never a bother and you speak from your heart. As others have said, I hope that her father finds kindness in his soul to see how much damage he would do to his daughter by keeping you and Sweet Wife away. She is the innocent here and does not deserve this. If he does do this injustice, then let the next years speed by quickly so she can make decisions for her life on her own and find you two back into her life. My positive thoughts go out to you and your family during this horrible time.

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    1. Thanks, my friend. You are correct..he hurts her more than us, and that's the shame of it.

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  37. p.s. I like the idea of another about continuing your blog for little bit. Let her read your words and find the love she can't get in person for now.

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    1. I might sometime in the future. For now it just hurts too much to write of her. Thanks, Bubba.

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  38. Stephen and Sweet Wife, I cannot begin to find the words to express how much this affects all grandparents, myself included, and all of your readers. It is sad beyond words, and makes me sick to my stomach. I do believe that all of the prayers and thoughts that are being sent up for you three right now, will in the end, find an answer to this catastrophe and I know in my heart you will all be together again. Your goodness will not be defeated.

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    1. God bless you, my friend. Thanks.

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  39. I am so so sorry. Hugs. Your family is in my thoughts.

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    1. Thank you, sweet one...hugs are always welcomed and appreciated.

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  40. dear sweet one - i can only repeat what everyone else has repeated and i am sorry that it took me so long to get to this post. i agree with the others that you should keep writing to her and for her so that she will be able to see what really went on, one day when she is old enough. she will not forget the love that you and Sweet Wife gave to her, i promise.

    and now i think it is time for all of us to collectively start praying that your son soon sees the error of his ways.

    much love being sent to you. your friend,
    kymber

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    1. Thank you, dear kymber...God bless.

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  41. Sorry Stephen

    Knowing how family court works in Florida, I am not surprised. Good people always get burned and the dirt bags walk away smiling.
    Have you considered using step-hags pill popping issue to get joint custody maybe? If LB safety is a concern, DCF should be doing their job and making sure lil bit is alright. They should be doing unannounced house visits to check on the situation. Call them up and voice your concerns, repeatedly.. I know DCF doesn't normally do the right thing either but it is something to consider...

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    1. Dear one...the state will not allow grandparents joint custody. We have zero legal rights. The only way they, the state, would allow us custody of our grandchild is if her parents die. DCF is a waste of time, useless. They have a heavy case load and are extremely reluctant to act on most complaints. They make a token effort and then write a simple one page report. If there isn't physical marks/bruises on the child they walk away....thanks, my friend.

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  42. Oh, Stephen.

    Can I just echo everyone else and say that you haven't tried my patience in any way?

    I am in the unique position to understand your heartache more than most, given my own situation. We were fortunate in that the judge took our overwhelming evidence into account and our two years of acting in loco parentis, and made the right decision as far as we were concerned. My parents were 100% supportive of us, even though it meant going against their son in favor of their grandchildren. It took us 14 months to wind through our court process.

    I am so sorry that Florida does not recognize grandparents' rights the way Pennsylvania does. That truly stinks.

    And Tammy is right; continue to call DCF (or whatever your agency there is) and press for checkups and monitoring. You have the right to express your concerns, and, it sounds, good reason to have them.

    And, please. Don't try to "spare" us by not mentioning Little Bit. I know how it hurts, and I know how it can help to blog. We are, quite clearly, your friends, and we care about what hurts you. If you need to not mention her for your own well-being, well, I for one will understand. But friends care, and friends want to help you shoulder your burdens--I think you can tell that from the comments here already.

    Hugs to you and your sweet wife.

    I have an ear available, should you need it.

    I will continue to pray.

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    1. Thank you, my sweet friend. You indeed know of my hurt. God bless and thank you for your prayers.

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    1. Thank you my friend...really, thanks.

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  44. Never ever feel like you're trying our patience. If you were, we'd leave.... so you're stuck with us! Prayers & good thoughts for you & your family. Blessings to you!
    your friend,
    ~hobo

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  45. We are here for you whenever you need an ear..you have NEVER tried our patience. Actually, it always warmed my heart to hear about Little Bit and made me angry whenever trouble came her and your way!
    Now, my heartfelt love comes to you and Sweet Wife over all this...and LB, too. My prayers are with you all.

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    1. Sweet Lady, it warmed my heart to write of her...now, it just hurts. Maybe with the grace of time the memory of will allow me to once again write of her and the love we shared. But, for now, I just cannot stand the hurt.

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  46. I'm at a loss for words. We will pray for healing for your family. The children should come first.

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  47. A while back you went to her school, and when LittleBit came out and saw you, she went flying into your arms for a hug. Can't you do that at least once a week so she knows you are still there for her. Even if you change up the days that you show up so there is no set schedule. Maybe Sweet Wife can become best friends with Little Bits friends mother, so when the two girls get together after school, at least you can see her that way, just to tell her you still love her. Just trying to think outside of the box. JB

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    1. Anon, no I cannot. First, she isn't enrolled in the private school Sweet Wife and me worked so hard to enroll her in, and second, we do not know of her whereabouts. Her father has removed her from the school. Even if we knew where she stays during the day while on summer vacation, we are NOT ALLOWED visitation by law. Her father has the right to allow us, but he will not do so out of meanness and because his wife doesn't grant him the right because she holds his testicles in a very tight grip. Thanks.

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  48. Oh no... Stephen, I am so sorry for y'all. Literally brought tears to my eyes to think of how painful this must be. I know how much I love my Grandpa and Grandma, and I know how much my lil' squirts love their Granny and Papa. This is going to be as hard, if not harder on Lil' Bit than y'all, because we've all seen just how much she loves y'all. I hate government interlopers with a passion...

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    1. Thanks, Craig, my friend. I've cried more in the last few weeks and months than the entire of my life...hate to admit it, but it's true. I'm exhausted. Thank you.

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  49. May I suggest: If there is evidence of abuse or neglect (i.e. losing weight) you might be able to get yourself appointed legal guardian(become her parent) if you are next of kin. There has to be some sort of Child Protective Services in FL.

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    1. We've reported the drug abuse. They walked in the house and the wife gave them a bottle of pills, written scrip from some pill mill. They walked out. No test, nada. They would not investigate even though we told them she buys pills daily on the street and has even stolen pills from my home prescribed to me when I was in the hospital. The state is worthless. Thanks, my friend.

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    2. Stephen, a warrior doesn't give up. And when it comes to LB, you are a warrior. Remember the Parable of the Widow and the Corrupt Judge in the Bible.

      And all of us have your six.

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  50. Ahh, damm. :( Prayers sent up for you two and littlebit for strength and peace. I also have to say what others have, you haven't been out of place talking about this, we're here to read and respond. :)

    You've probably thought of this already, but can any of your local congresscritters help influence the cps minions to at least grant you temporary custody?

    Please keep up updated as you have the energy to.

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    1. That is my next step. Problem is, Corrine Brown is my congresscritter...God help me. Thanks.

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  51. I can't add anything new that everyone hasn't already said. You'll be in our prayers and you can vent here all you want we're here for you and sweet wife.

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    1. Thank you very much for the prayers, my new friend. God bless.

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  52. Friend Stephen, I am very sorry to hear this. I know I don't know the full story of your situation, but I can't help but feel empathy if not outright sympathy for your situation in light of our own struggles for M&M. I can only hope that Little Bit will find a way around her parents to recapture as she grows older what has been taken from her. I will keep you all in my prayers.

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    1. Thanks, my friend. Our only hope is when she grows older she puts pressure on her father to allow her to visit...God bless.

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  53. I hope that step gets caught/arrested, and not just for little bits sake. Her whole family is affected by this, and none of them deserve it.
    Would a private investigator help nail the evidence to the wall?

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    1. My dear friend. I too hope justice gently taps her shoulder one of these days. In truth, I'm not sure if a private investigator will help or not. At two hundred fifty bucks an hour it's a big gamble. Thanks, my friend...thanks.

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  54. I know how very much you love her and how devoted she is to you. That someone that says they love her would keep her from you is beyond cruel.

    You will be in my prayers.

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    1. Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Sweet Brigid. Your prayers are most welcome. It, is indeed cruel, and uncalled for...

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  55. Having grown up in a generation that is full of broken children and broken families, I give you this hope: Little Bit knows you love her. Her peers, if her generation is at all like mine, will be full of stories of broken families, and kids swapping the horror stories of the cruelties of divorce and family court - and they will teach her that no matter what the law says, you hold onto the people you love.

    She knows where to get ahold of you at the shop, perhaps this blog (did you ever let her see the address?), and other places you two have been. She knows where you live, quite possibly your phone number. No matter how far away they take her, they cannot take that information from her.

    For all the law may forbid you from reaching out to her - no law can long keep a determined kid with internet access from reaching out to where they want to go. Lack of wisdom often gets them caught the first few times, which is more incentive to be even wiser and more clever about not getting caught, not incentive to stop.

    It may take time. It may take years, until she grows into finding ways around those who hold power over her - but she knows you love her, and the woman you have helped shape with your love and example will eventually become old enough to find her way back to you. God forbid it takes until she turns 18, but even if it should, once she is an adult, no force on earth can stop her from coming back to you.

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    1. My sweet friend, thank you for the wonderful comment. Yes, she knows how to find my shop. She's a sharp seven year old bit of wonder. I've had to build a room in my mind with a strongly locked door and I've placed my memories and feelings inside. Otherwise I truly believe I find it necessary to leave this old earth. God bless.

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  56. My heart is aching for you. I am so sorry to hear this has happened.

    I know that right now you feel too crushed to write. However, I agree with those above who suggested you keep a written journal for Little Bit.

    Also, don’t forget Sport Model. Little Bit will remember your love and come looking for you one day, but Sport Model is too young to remember. If he too comes searching one day, the written journal might help him get to know you and your love.

    A good place to start is to tell them how crushed you feel at this situation. How you are worried that they will forget you. (However, in your heart, I think you know that Little Bit could NEVER forget you.)

    It would be easy to get depressed in this situation and not take proper care of yourself. Waiting is the hardest torture, but eventually Little Bit will come looking for you. You and Sweet Wife must take care of yourselves so you can be there for your grandkids when they inevitably come looking for love.

    I will keep praying,
    Southern Gal

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    1. My lovely friend, I'm not sure I can wait. This is truly killing my soul. Thank you.

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  57. Stephen, I wish there was something more that I could do for y'all more than just pray.

    Damnit.

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    1. Prayer is enough....thank you, my good friend. Take care.

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  58. I'm so sorry, Stephen. But please know that Little Bit will hang onto the memories of all the wonderful (and little) sweet things you have done together, and they will help her until she can spend time with you again.

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    1. Ellen, my friend, I hope so. I truly do so she remembers and continues to love us. She's so young and her parents, father and step-mother, are filled with hate, and extremely immature.

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  59. Stephen, I'm sorry to hear about this. Hopefully something will change and it will get better.

    All the Best,

    TFI

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    1. Thanks, Bubba. You have a heart of gold...

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  60. If I can be of service in any way....hopefully you still have my phone number. I am here,always ready to lend a hand, or simply just listen. I been there. There is hope.

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    1. I still have and shall always keep your phone number, Bubba. You are my friend. I swear, if I think you can help I will call. I promise. God bless you.

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  61. Stephen, this breaks my heart ... I am so sorry that things have gone down this path. My prayers are with you and Sweet Wife and Little Bit ...

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  62. I am so sorry. My Prayers.

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  63. I've been a lurker for a while now and know that you were a bright spot in Little Bit's life. So sorry to hear this and will pray for your family.
    Cheryle

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  64. Cheryle, thank you so very much for the kind comment. We miss her. God bless. And, hey, don't lurk, dig right in and become a regular. I need all the help I can get around here.

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  65. Hey Stephen,

    Been away from the blogs for a couple of months now, just caught up on yours. From half a country away my heart goes out to you and your wife. Never feel a burden expressing yourself on your blog. Those of us who follow your writings, share your heartache on this.

    Offering you our prayers.
    J

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    1. Jason, sorry it's taken me so very long to reply. Thank you very much for your support and prayers. God bless.

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  66. I'm guilty of not reading my own blogroll for extended periods, so I've had to go back and catch up. My heart goes out to you.

    Keep up the fight, whenever and however you can. That little girl needs you.

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    1. My friend, like I said above, sorry to take so long in my reply....I will continue the fight for my Little Bit. Otherwise I might as well shoot myself. I can't live without her in my life. Thank you and God bless.

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