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Acting Parent Problems

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1 Acting Parent Problems on Sat Nov 18, 2017 2:37 am

inlocoparentis


Arresto Menor
Hi, I'd like to seek advice on what I can do with my situation:

I take care of a 3-year old kid, Baby C, whose father is my cousin (my dad and his mom are siblings). Baby C is my cousin's 3rd panganay. His other 2 kids are with their respective mothers that he don't see anymore. His current partner, the mother of Baby C, is technically still married with 2 teenage daughters who live with her and her mother.

When Baby C was born, the mother left the baby in care of my aunts as my cousin lives with them. The mother will just get the baby from time to time and when they fight, she uses the baby as leverage to the father. At the time, we are aware that both of them are drug users. When Baby C was 8 months old, I was able to care for him, getting him on the weekends so I can bring him to the pedia, buy his needs, etc. The life of the baby was chaotic in between these periods. The mother also has a record of attempted suicide when the baby was around 10 months old. It was fortunate that the baby was staying with us for the day when it happened.

When he turned 1.5 years old, he was hospitalized due to gatstroenteritis and dehydration. On one of the nights that the mother was tasked to look after the baby, she left him alone in the charity ward of UST because she ran after my cousin who did not show up that night to be with her. One week after this incident, we took the baby to stay with us for good. And then after a few months, my father took my cousin (Baby C's father ) to rehab.

The 8 months that my cousin was in rehab, the baby lived peacefully with us. We didn't let the mother know that my cousin was in rehab as she is not a legal wife or part of the family. She only asked for the baby 3-4 times during those 8 months, saying that she wants to have the baby for a week, but will then just give the baby back after a day or two.

But when my cousin got out of rehab last June 2017, they got back together, leaving the baby still in our care. We thought that this setup will work, they get together and just let the baby get all the care he deserves with us. They will see the baby whenever they want and we will always bring him to them.

Last September, one of my aunts got the mother a job in Dubai as a tutor, but when all the documents were ready and she was ready to leave, she backed out. She was asking us for money as well which we refused to give. She was not able to step inside the house of my cousin and aunt after the incident which agitated her, because that is the only place where they can be together. My cousin is not allowed in the woman's place.

Now, the mother asked us to bring the baby to her and we thought this is a routinary request but as soon as she saw us she said she will take the baby for good. Baby C has lived with us for 1.5 years by now. We found out that she is unemployed right now. Her claim is that she has money now provided by her family and that she is about to leave for Saudi Arabia as a medical secretary, she will leave Baby C (turning 3 now) and her other daughters at the care of her mother who is disabled (suffered a stroke, has difficulty walking).

We have a strong feeling that this is a ploy to extort money from us, and that she and my cousin (who is unemployed too) are using drugs again. What measures can we do to secure the baby's safety and is there a possibility for us to remove custody from the mother given her history of addiction and negligence to the child? What steps can we do to help this situation?

Looking forward to your advice. Thank you.

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2 Re: Acting Parent Problems on Sun Nov 19, 2017 2:59 pm

xtianjames


Reclusion Perpetua
Check with DSWD.

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3 Re: Acting Parent Problems on Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:57 am

inlocoparentis


Arresto Menor
xtianjames wrote:Check with DSWD.

Thank you for your reply sir.

Do we have a fighting chance with DSWD? We tried that course before, ang ginawa lang nila is mediation between my cousin and the mother. They wanted the maternal grandmother to come to the DSWD office but the kid's mother did not allow that to happen. After nun no course of action na ang DSWD.

My question also, do I have a place in all of this? I mean, I'm just an aunt from a cousin, but I'm really concerned about the child. He is like a son to me already.

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4 Re: Acting Parent Problems on Mon Nov 20, 2017 12:57 pm

xtianjames


Reclusion Perpetua
Unfortunately, legally wala ka habol sa bata. The best that you can hope is panatilihin ng DSWD yung pangangalaga sa inyo kung mapapatunayan na malalagay sa alanganin yung bata kung mapupunta sa pangangalaga ng mga magulang nya. Pero usually kasi sa next of kin nung nanay nung bata binibigay ang bata kung ito ay illegitimate.

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5 Re: Acting Parent Problems on Mon Nov 20, 2017 3:08 pm

inlocoparentis


Arresto Menor
What if we support the father so he can fight for custody? Although the father in the birth certificate of the child was declared UNKNOWN of the mother (despite the father being present at the time of birth and the mother conjured a fake certificate for the father to sign), and the surname of the child is the mother's maiden name.

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6 Re: Acting Parent Problems on Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:30 pm

xtianjames


Reclusion Perpetua
Only the mother has sole parental authority over the illegitimate child.

Also, in order to have a claim that the father is the real father, filiation between the father and child needs to be established since he is not appearing on the BC. This can be done through paternity acknowledgement. Approach the civil registrar where the BC of the child was recorded for more details.

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