Sunday, November 15, 2009

Response to "Anonymous" comment under HelpForDaddy post

For anyone reading the anonymous comment under the HelpForDaddy blog post, I have never missed a child support payment even though I have no access to my children. Someone under the name "Anonymous" accused me of being a deadbeat dad. "Anonymous" will not be able to provide any evidence of negligence or misconduct that would justify ripping the children's right to see their father. All I wanted was the opportunity to play an equal role in caring for my children. If both parties would have agreed to allowing the children to be raised by both parents, then the divorce could have been over in a few months. Unfortunately the case is in appeal because the judge awarded my ex a $122,000 interest in the farmland that my mother and father bought. My ex claimed she was entitled to $122,000 of my parents' farm after a 4.5 year marriage. "Anonymous" claims that I am a deadbeat dad because I failed to pay my ex money from farmland that I may inherit when my mother dies. Because there is a judgment lien on the farmland, my mother is unable to sell property in case she needs to pay for long term medical care. The custody evaluation report from Dr. Connor made no mention of any concerns of me being a danger to the children and Dr. Connor did not mention anything about supervised visitation or termination of my parenting time. "Anonymous" claims that I am whining yet what "Anonymous" fails to tell people is that Indiana Code 31-17-2-12c states that the custody evaluation is inadmissible if the case file is not provided to the parties upon request. "Anonymous" failed to state how my ex entered into a separate agreement with Dr. Connor for individual psychological services during the time of the evaluation and then submitted the agreement to Court as a reason I could not have the evaluation case file. "Anonymous" fails to tell people the "conditions" of the judge. "Anonymous" fails to mention that I was denied the case file yet the Judge allowed Dr. Connor to testify. The Judge stated,

"[Dan] shall not be entitled to visitation until he undergoes a mental health evaluation with a Mental Health Care Provider approved by the Court. The purpose of this evaluation is to determine if he is possibly a danger to the children, Wife and/or to himself."

"If the Mental Health Care Provider determines that Husband is not a danger to the children, Wife, and/or to himself, Husband may have supervised visitation in a therapeutic setting for four (4) hours per week, in increments of two (2), two (2) hour visits per week. The Court shall make this determination after reviewing the evaluation. Visitation shall not begin until approved and ordered by the Court. If ordered, said supervised visitation shall be scheduled so as it does not interfere with the children's kindergarten and/or preschool schedules..." "Husband shall be responsible for all expenses associated with the supervised visitation and must select a provider to be approved by the Court."

"Husband may motion this Court for unsupervised visitation with the children, upon compliance with the recommendations of Mental Health Provider and recommendation by the provider of the supervised visitation, that unsupervised visitation may safely occur with the children."

"Because of the potential danger to the children, Husband must remove all postings created by him from the internet concerning the children before any unsupervised visitation may commence and/or continue."

"When the Court deems that it is appropriate for following subsequent hearing or as agreed by the parties, the Court will consider Unsupervised visitation between the Husband and the minor children."

I would not have had the ability to tell my children the truth about what was going on because the Judge wrote:

"Both parties are restrained and enjoined from sharing any information concerning this dissolution with the minor children, except as needed per the advice and assistance from a mental health provider."

I cared for my children nearly half the time during the course of a 2.5 year divorce. "Anonymous" claimed that I somehow prolonged the divorce yet my ex did not move the Court to set a final hearing until a year and a half after she filed for divorce. My ex fought the release of the case file despite signing a contract consenting to the release of the file. Dr. Connor gave several conflicting reasons as to why he would not provide me with a copy of the file. The first Judge in the case recused himself due to his communication with Dr. Connor outside the presence of the parties. "Anonymous" accuses me of whining for publicizing the fact that Judge Taul violated Canon 3 of the Judicial Code of Conduct. I requested a copy of the case file on March 6, 2008. If my ex would not have fought the release of the case file, the divorce would not have lasted as long. Prior to March 6, 2008, Dr. Connor never mentioned any concerns about me being any kind of threat to anyone. The more questions I raised about Dr. Connor not being licensed in Indiana, false statements about the release of psychological test data, errors in the evaluation, conflicting statements regarding the release of the case file, etc..., the more "concerned" Dr. Connor became. What "Anonymous" does not mention is that during the course of the 2.5 year divorce, my ex never filed a motion to modify parenting time because she felt I presented a risk to the children. My ex never filed a complaint with social services. My ex made no accusations of abuse of the children. Through the course of the 2.5 year divorce, no one did anything to limit the time I had with the children. If I presented such a risk to the children, why did the Judge wait over 2.5 months to terminate my parenting time?

"Anonymous" states that I failed to follow through with the Judge's "orders." Because the matter is in appeal, the Judge claims he has no jurisdiction over the matter so I couldn't even petition the Court to approve a mental health professional if I wanted to. The problem is, I already went through an evaluation and even Dr. Connor failed to mention that I presented a danger to anyone. I could go through another evaluation and it can come back that am not a danger to anyone and the Judge could disregard it and not allow me to have access to the evaluation case file as he did with Dr. Connor. If the judge found that I was not a danger to the children, I still had to undergo two, two hour supervised visitation sessions a week with the children in a "therapeutic setting." I played an equal role in caring for my children throughout their lives and now I have to undergo supervised visitation AFTER I was already declared not to be a danger to the children. The judge used my children as leverage against me because he stated that I could not have unsupervised visitation unless I took down the internet content that was "dangerous" to the children. The judge even went as far as to chastise me for teaching my children to use computers when he wrote, "[husband] is even instructing the children on how to use computers and to access the internet." My children were 3 and 5 at the time. Essentially, the Court claimed that my children were in some kind of emotional danger after being in my care because the girls learned how to use computers and could access the internet. Apparently my ex and the Court felt that it was dangerous for 3 and 5 year old children to interact with websites like PBS, NickJr, Noggin, DiscoveryKids, etc...

My ex filed for divorce when my girls were 1 and 3. Prior to then, she worked evenings and nights. She took occasional weekend trips with friends and/or family. I took care of the children while she was at work. My ex tried to say I was not a capable parent during the divorce but she never had any reservations about leaving the children alone with me when she went on weekend outings with her friends. Notice how "Anonymous" doesn't mention adultery, drug or alcohol abuse, child abuse, domestic violence, golfing too much, etc..." "Anonymous" criticizes me for not being around for my children when the final decree states if "agreed by the parties, the Court will consider Unsupervised Visitation between the Husband and the minor children" yet my ex has failed to take any measures to help the children be with their father. "Anonymous" fails to mention that my ex was the only person who testified that I needed supervised visitation and also testified that my mother was not qualified to supervise the visitation. My mother is a retired 8th grade math teacher with her master's degree in guidance and counseling. "Anonymous" fails to mention that my ex testified that I placed my children in harms way because there were ants in the kitchen in my farmhouse and I let the children watch Austin Powers. One thing "Anonymous" will never be able to do is to provide any evidence that I ever attacked or belittled my ex during the course of the divorce, because I never wanted to do anything that would cause my children to say, "Why did you do that to mommy?"

It doesn't take a lot of courage to slander someone with a name like "Anonymous." Notice how "Anonymous" ruminates on the duration of the long divorce yet the only "negative" points "Anonymous" raises are that I have not paid my ex $122,000 from land I do not own and I do not have a job. Anonymous has failed to mention that my ex hasn't let me talk to the children since September 4, 2009. I guess that's punishment for not having a job. You are wrong Anonymous, I do have a job and my job is to inform the public of how my children were punished because their father stood up for the rights of children and parents. The more people that I can make aware of the situation, the better chance I will have to play an important role in my children's lives and to prevent this from happening to other children. I think the girls will appreciate that their father did not settle for playing a minimal role in their lives.

1 comment:

  1. Dear Dan,

    This whole case sickens me as it probably does most mothers. As far as this person's comment, I would say that this person is obviously misinformed or emotionally involved in this case, both of which can make one speak irresponsibly. Not an excuse, but probably the reson. Most of the details of this stink so bad for you but one silver lining is that your children will someday choose for themselves who they will spend their time with. As an adult woman, I cannot tell you how many times the love and acceptance from my father has given me the confidence or the determintation to get through sitations or conquer fears. I never understood it but it is vitally important. Your X, whom I do not know at all, has to be very selfish to want to take that away from your daughters regardless of her feelings for you. Who does that to 2 innocent children? They HAVE to be dealing with serious issues now that their daddy has vanished. I don't get it.
    The beauty is, though, that someday, you will stand before these angels and tell them that you fought for them and they were worth it. It is such an amazing feeling to have anyone fight for you. I often say that I have less of that in my life than I wish I did. I wish more people would stand up for me even in a simple conversation.
    So, I know how it will feel to them when they see what you went through and what you sacrificed just to see them. Females need the reassurance..I am sure of it. You can't give to them right now how you want..but what you may not realize is you are making those awkard, insecure 20's a whole lot easier!
    May God richly bless your efforts!
    Lots of Love,