This is another one of those cases that just gnaws at the pit of your stomach like a bad plate of mussels. This amazing mother deserves SO much better from a society that is supposed to be all about helping single mothers. She has two long blog posts which I will link below and then summarize for you:
Her other website is: meganredshaw.com
(Megan Redshaw..courtesy of her blog.)
Here is a bit about Megan, excerpted from her blog as well:
"I finished college at nineteen with a degree in political science. I started my first blog around that time (Don’t even think about looking for it!) to chronicle my journey battling Crohn’s, philosophy on life, and recipes (which I hilariously thought were healthy at the time.) My desire to save the world from itself motivated me to go to law school, and my love for food and natural medicine (along with my desire to do 5,000 things at once) led me to the study of natural health. I have a law degree, am a certified Natural Health Educator, became a certified Naturopath after completing four years of training at two different institutions, am a certified yoga instructor (Yes, I went through that phase.), am Pn1 (Precision Nutrition) certified, founded Live Beyond Words, Inc., which focuses on orphan care and poverty alleviation in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and worked as a marketing manager for a social media company before I jumped into blogging full-time."
As you can see from the above Megan does not really fit the typical profile of the type of person that CPS prefers to prey upon. She is brilliant, beautiful, well-spoken and most importantly-- KNOWS THE LAW. And, that may be the saddest part of this story-- which has been emerging since a couple weeks before Christmas. Apparently, "Child Protective" "Services" (CPS) in Missouri is going ahead and picking on a person who has a law degree BECAUSE they simply have no intention of following the law, have displayed that contempt for the law repeatedly, and seems to know that nobody in Missouri's Court systems can (or will) do anything about it. Now that is a scary situation for any parent to be caught in, because he/she is not going up against just one bad apple, but she's trying to dump over the whole rotten barrel!
(And..it's not just Megan having trouble with Missouri CPS.)
Briefly, Megan's story is as follows... She and her first husband of eight years had three children of their own when they decided to adopt two more--from The Congo. They had both become heavily involved in charity work in that impoverished nation, and Megan fell in love with the people, the culture, and eventually two very needy children...a boy and a girl. The couple went through the very long and convoluted process of adopting the children, including paying bribes to all the right people, and just before the children were to be flown to the United States, Megan's husband announced that he wasn't going to go through with the adoption, that he was having an affair and wanted a divorce, and that he would oppose any attempt by Megan to move on with her life--specifically with regard to the adoption.
After a continued new course of legal difficulties, she finally succeeded in getting both the children to her home in the States, and began to try putting her life back together, as a single mom with FOUR KIDS IN DIAPERS, and one (the adopted girl) with severe emotional/psychological issues. She worked miracles holding things together with very little help from anywhere--especially from stat agencies that are supposed to help in situations like this, but could not resolve the new daughter's problems, despite some psychological intervention.
Her ex-husband's best friends remained friendly with Megan after the divorce, and eventually they offered to adopt the two kids from the Congo even though Megan desperately wanted to keep them. Out of work and struggling financially, Megan eventually realized that these "fine folks" could give her little troubled adopted child the things that she couldn't, and she eventually yielded to their insistence but with a promise that should that couple ever decide they couldn't keep the kids that they would be returned to Megan.
Awhile later she received a text message from the couple--only one text--and nothing else...no returned text, requests by phone with details, etc....that Megan should come and get the kids by 6PM that very evening, and that they wanted the kids returned. Megan tried and tried to get confirmation of details. Where should they be picked up? What had happened? Was their new medical or psychological conditions she needed to be mad ware of? In short, she made it clear from her end that she definitely wanted them back, but she was unable to get any details of what exactly was needed. She didn't even have money for new car seats when that text message came.
Despite her best efforts, the other couple moved on, with CPS intervention, to give the kids over to another couple! Megan was not notified of this until the process was well under way and the guardian ad litem (GAL) had already determined WITHOUT CAUSE, charge, OR EVEN ALLEGATION, that Megan was not capable to take the kids back. During this time, as well, her ex-husband, who never showed any interest in the kids after the divorce, was suddenly brought-- by CPS-- back into the picture and despite not even paying his court-ordered child support for his own three kids (still with Megan) has been a constant "adviser" to CPS, and constantly has been doing everything possible to oppose whatever Megan has wanted to do.
From there, Megan has endured an absolute travesty of "justice" and is still fighting for her adopted children. She has remarried, gotten her financial difficulties improved, etc., and yet the State of Missouri is simply ignoring all of their own laws and refuses to give custody either to Megan, her parents, or other family members. Her parents and uncle and aunt have all made themselves available to take the kids, gone through extensive screening, with NO NEGATIVES EVER GIVEN, and yet though state law gives them preference over the third American placement for these poor kids, there is nothing.
We can assume that the current couple must have paid somebody very well, and that they are being illegally supported by powerful people behind the scenes. It's got to be that, or something to do with the guardian ad litem (GAL) not wanting to admit and face up to her own failures to make proper decisions. Here is how the courts define a GAL:
"A 'guardian ad litem' (GAL) is a person the court appoints to investigate what solutions would be in the 'best interests of a child.' Here, we are talking about a GAL in a divorce or parental rights and responsibilities case."
Megan makes it clear that, for whatever reason, the GAL assigned by the courts to her case definitely has it in for her. maybe she just doesn't like being faced with a parent that knows the law way better than she does. Maybe she just doesn't like something about Megan...jealous of her looks, her intelligence, her ability to surmount difficulties like a champ that almost no one else could ever have surmounted. Whatever the cause, this GAL is doing nothing to benefit these poor children who are now in the hands of the fourth set of parents in the space of just a few months.
But again, worst of all, this is a clear case of the law being openly and blatantly flaunted. Those Congolese adoptees belong either with Megan, her parents, or her aunt and uncle. ALL OF THEM have priority under the law, and yet, somehow, the CPS seems, again, to be ABOVE THE LAW--at least in Missouri. You can sing up for updates and notifications from Megan. There are dozens of very supportive comments below each of the links above.
FYI...this beautiful Christian mom has NEVER been on drugs, or alcohol. She has no criminal record, has never had an allegation of ANYTHING made against her--for "abuse," "neglect" or anything else. In fact, she is sure that if she did have such a record, that her case would have been treated with greater deference by CPS. Ahem...(did I mention that maybe CPS doesn't like Christians either...??)
Please do pray for Megan. Sign up at her blog. Leave her an encouraging comment.
THIS SHALL NOT AND MUST NOT STAND!!