So I thought I would share my story of how my niece ended up living with me..
It all started when my sister got pregnant she was a heavy drinker and even though she was pregnant she didn’t stop. She was drinking around a bottle of vodka a day all the way through her pregnancy. Jessica was born healthy surprisingly, at 6lb 7oz which I am told is a very good weight for a baby born to an alcoholic mother.
My sister was kept in hospital for two weeks. In this time she left Jessica at the hospital and went on a binge. Social services got involved but agreed that with there support she could take Jessica home to my grandparents house where she was staying. She took to being a mum rather well considering her problems. She also suffers from a personality disorder which makes her a difficult person. After around three weeks she moved from my grandparents to a friend’s house who took over the care of her and Jessica in this time my sister was fighting with her drink demons and was finding it very hard but she carried on not drinking or so she led us all to believe. Unfortunately she was very good at hiding the fact she was still drinking, social services were still involved at this time but weren’t giving her the support she needed. But because as far as they were concerned she wasn’t drinking they closed the case. She continued to live with her friend who ended up becoming a carer for Jessica as my sister was not coping.
She moved out and left Jessica there and she was seeing Jessica on a regularly basis, and after a few weeks had moved into her own place and felt ready to care for Jessica. All was going well for a few weeks but then drink became a priority over everything including Jessica, she was forever going out to pubs taking Jessica with her, one day it all got to much for her Jessica was unwell and was constantly crying so my sister walked out of the pub she was in and left her there, someone phoned the police and she was arrested and Jessica was taken back to the friends she had been staying at. Social services became involved again and kept a closer eye on things as my sister had moved back into her friends to be with Jessica. She got the help she needed to stop drinking, and for two months she was drink free. At this time I wasn’t aware of everything that had happened but one day she phoned me to tell me she was moving into her own place again and felt now was the time she could be the mother Jessica deserved, I was pleased for her.
She came down a few weeks later to visit me with Jessica and she stayed two weeks in this time it was apparent she was drinking again. No where near as much as she had before and she said she could now control herself. I was unaware how this was a real bad thing for an alcoholic. She went home after the two weeks were up. A few weeks later she came down again and asked me if I could have Jessica for a week, I said I would love to. Little did I know this was the start of Jessica living with me. The day my sister was going home unbeknown to me she had gone to the pub rather then the train station and met up with a man and got drunk. Infact she was so drunk she ended up in hospital in a right state I had the police at my door making sure Jessica was with me. I went to the hospital to see her and it was then I decided she was in no fit state to care for Jessica.
The next day she was released from hospital and went back home, in the week that Jessica was staying with me I had numerous phone drunken phone calls from my sister this just made me more sure that she wasn’t in a fit state. I told my sister this and she agreed that Jessica should stay with me until she had got herself sorted. Social services came out to asses me and my flat all was fine. After three weeks my sister told me she was ready to have Jessica back I still had concerns so spoke to my parents about it and they felt the same and contacted social services to inform them of there worries. My sister was not happy at all about this and kicked off. I kept Jessica and refused to take her back. Some people said I was wrong for doing this but I was only doing what I thought was right for Jessica.
It would turn out that what I did was for the best as the week after she went to visit my parents and met a man down there who took her out for a meal which involved drinking and they stayed in a bed and breakfast that night and she got so drunk yet again she ended up in hospital. This time they decided she needed more help then she had been getting so they transferred her to secure mental home. She was only there a few days when they decided they couldn’t offer the help she needed so they released and once again she was left to go it alone. She eventually started getting the help she needed again. She decided she couldn’t care for Jessica and asked me if I could for a while until she was ready again.
She is now getting all the help she needs and is making good progress. She has a few relapses along the way but is not letting them get her down. It will be along time before she is ready to have Jessica back but sees her on a regular basis. So until then Jessica will live with me. It has crossed my mind that this could be a permanent thing but I am willing to do it. I also know that if Jessica does go back to my sister I am going to find it very difficult as Jessica has started to call me mummy and is to young to understand any different and I have a very close bond with her. I guess that’s just something I will have to deal with if the time comes.
This post is an anonymous guest post