I have no one to tell this story to and it is eating me up inside. I am very wordy when I am stressed, so thanks in advance for your patience with me.
My son started getting ill in his mid teens between 14-16, although I didn’t know his behavior was due to schizophrenia, I blamed it on running with the wrong friends and getting into drugs and alcohol. Nevertheless for the 2 weeks he was a freshman in high school he met a girl there same age as him but unbeknownst to me from the most notorious and infamous family in the city (I found out from several police officers later on). This was also the time when he constantly ran away from home and a time when my younger half sister who had no children took every opportunity she could to interfere with my parenting and take him to her house and allow him to drink and smoke much against my wishes.
My life at that time was working, and taking my kids to school, trying to make sure they stayed there, and got some homework done and searching daily for my sz son. I would find him more often than not and try to get him back home and ready for the next day, I had some friends that were police officers that tried to help me at times to get him home without creating an issue for him. They were no help in keeping that family away from my son though. It was fortunate at that time that my oldest had a “Big Brother” from a local Big Brother organization, because it got him out of the chaos often.
I never slept. It was a constant battle and when this girl latched on to my son the real nightmare began. She was a young “fatal attraction” and almost impossible to get rid of as she never ever took no for an answer and whatever craziness she was into her parents, siblings and numerous cousins were all with her to help her in her efforts. She and her relatives tormented our family for about 10 years all total and they stalked us everywhere, flattened our tires, peered into our windows all hours of the night and called 100 times a day. We took out retraining orders, tried to mediate, moved, changed phone numbers, so many things and when my son was 16 they took him out of the state and left him with an elderly relative a state away for 6 months until I found him on my own. I had no clue what had happened to him he had vanished and my gut said this family had him somewhere.
I found him by sending flyers to dozens of 7-11’s a quickie marts in a 3 state area with my son’s picture and the brand of cigarettes he smoked and said call collect immediately if you see this kid. It took 6 months to get a call and it lead me to my son again. I tried to file charges and at that time the police would not support abduction charges because my son was 16 and he did not call what happened “abduction” at all but he was delusional then too.
About a year into them first hanging out together, the girl calls and says she is pregnant and it is my sons baby. I knew they had been together because they allowed my son to stay at their house sometimes and would tell me he was not there.
My first reaction was OMG NO! There was no way I would want to be connected in any manner to this family. My son was very confused and tended to believe anything. Somehow they got him to sign the birth certificate without a DNA test, and without my knowledge. Once the little girl was born my son was getting more deluded and unable to speak and yet they never left him alone, they interfered with my taking him to rehab and counseling, as they would watch us and try to pose as family so I had to write statements and have passwords and all kinds of things to try to keep them out of our business.
Then she tried to get money from my son and from me and I said wait a minute before anyone does anything you will get a DNA test. At that time it was 100% free for her to do that through job and family services. I asked her regularly for over a year to get that done-otherwise leave us alone. She steadfastly refused which made me think she was lying. For us to assume that responsibility would have cost us more money than we had and I felt inviting trouble we didn’t need.
After my sz son turned 21 and was officially diagnosed and I became his guardian it was much harder for her to reach him and we moved to the opposite side of the city which helped.
I still had problems with calls sometimes and had to change my phone number dozens of times because my son would call her when he was delusional. When he was not delusional he did not want anything to do with her.
After he turned 25 or 26 (I think) the contact pretty much ended. there were a couple of letters from a local children services organization asking for medical history because there were problems with the child’s behavior. I wrote them back and said there was a bad history between that family and ours and there is no legal proof that we have any relation whatsoever, although I had requested it personally years ago. The letters stopped and then relative peace and quiet until last month.
My sz son turns 34 next month and is in a good place now and I get a call from a child support enforcement agency in West Virginia saying that they need to establish paternity because apparently the “need” for that got triggered because the grandfather of the child is claiming the child on his taxes and that means that they need to know paternity for that to continue. (sigh)
To make a very long story shorter, I had an hour long conversation with the investigator after faxing my guardianship papers to him and he said that a DNA test will have to be done in the near future but every effort will be made to preserve our privacy from the family and I was told that since he is on such a limited income if he is indeed the biological father of this now almost 17 year old girl, he will not be expected to pay child support, nor will he be forced into some kind of “visitation situation” so I felt a little better hearing that.
My son will totally unravel if this gets out of hand, there are fixed delusions attached to his experiences with this family and even some false memories or fantasies for lack of a better term. I am hoping that regardless of the DNA outcome nothing really changes. I just can’t believe that it has taken almost 2 decades for this to come back to haunt us yet again. The last thing we need. I am so sorry that an innocent child was born into that situation, it never should have happened, and with any luck the DNA test will not match. Shame it has to be this way. Sanity has to prevail.
I told my son (because he asked about possible visitation) that if he is the biological father and the (now) teenager wanted to see him for some reason it would only be once she was 18 and without any of her other family members present -and I would be there (nearby) or if I feel slightly threatened again by that whole family, then we will be moving to the other side of the country. They don’t just threaten my son’s well being, they threaten mine as well. I have never known such an insidious family before and I was raised in one of the worst so that says a lot.
Thanks for listening, hopefully letting me get this off of my chest will let me sleep tonight. Thanks to everyone.