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  #1  
Old 04-04-2011, 11:13 PM
Mama_Mo Mama_Mo is offline
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Teen Girls and False Allegations???

Hey Everyone,

There is a 16 year old girl that is in our state that "matches" our family. However, my husband is now concerned about false allegations. When we were in our training classes and they were going over kids making false allegations he was absolutely sick by it. The thought that his whole world (his family) could be turned upside down by a false allegation stresses him out. She doesn't have a history of making allegations that we know of. Anyone have advice or thoughts on this topic? This would be an adoptive placement (I'm not sure if that makes any difference???). Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 04-05-2011, 04:36 AM
servnjah servnjah is offline
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It does seem less likely she'd start making allegations at 16 and adoptable if she hasn't done it before. Doesn't mean she wouldn't though.

We gave two reasons why we would not accept older girls at this time. First, we don't want to potentially raise our daughter-in-law (or son's baby mama). Though son is very strong in his convictions, there is no reason to make it tougher on a teenage boy. Second, *we* chose foster care; we don't want him to pay the price in terms of allegations that could haunt him forever. Our agency workers seemed to think we made a good case.

This is a hard choice, especially since BB and LB's case worker mentioned a 13yr old to use just the other day. They need a home with our attitude regarding keeping kids, even if they are hard to deal with. But I told the caseworker our reason for our age range and she completely agreed.

Sooooooooo, it seems, at least according to the workers we've had contact with so far, that this *is* a concern to be considered. However, we're foster parents, not one likely to take an outright adoptive placement. And there is a significant difference between taking a kid directly from their home or whatever versus one whose history, at least for a few years, is known.

I'm sure that isn't much help; it's a tough choice.

JFWIW, I was a challenging teenager but never in a million years would I have falsely accused someone of something like that. I would guess that most girls, even those in care, are similar. It just is a bigger chance, I guess.
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  #3  
Old 04-05-2011, 04:43 AM
ajjhmf ajjhmf is offline
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You might pop over to the special needs board and ask there. Lots of the parents there have adopted teens and dealt with false allegations.
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  #4  
Old 04-05-2011, 05:54 AM
dazzlingdeb dazzlingdeb is offline
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False allegations are horrible. My 5 year old told someone I hit her (which I still believe she was led to say by someone at her school). The social worker picked both fds up at school, picked up a suitcase she asked me to pack and took them to respite for a week while the state investigated me.

I felt sick over it at first, but I knew I had done nothing wrong. In my mind, if the State wanted to close my home, that was their own fault for closing a good home that provides care for these kids.

But in the end it was completely unfounded.

I think the most danger would be in the beginning when a child doesn't really know you. Your husband would need to take extreme measures to never be alone with her.

Our oldest fd is now 9 and there are simple things that my husband does just to make sure things can't be twisted in any way (never walking around with a shirt off or just in boxers-which would be a normal thing if our foster daughters weren't here).

Making sure someone who is able to speak is always in the same room, and I mean always. Even a split second and a child could say they were touched.

I don't think false allegation fear should be only linked with teenagers, lots of kids make up crazy stuff at young ages.

But having a good track record, living with integrity in every way and taking precautions can help minimize the likelihood of it happening.
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  #5  
Old 04-05-2011, 08:22 AM
adoptsearch adoptsearch is offline
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Deb, I think your suggestions are good. The only problem is, how do you maintain those rules forever? So for example, if you adopt them, can your husband never drive your daughter to school? Or take her to her basketball game etc.?

I think they are all essential at least in the short run but I wonder about whether they can be sustained. And if they have to be sustained, how does your husband not feel like a prisoner in your own house, with no freedom to just live normal life.
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  #6  
Old 04-05-2011, 09:08 AM
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leahcar leahcar is offline
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I think looking at her history would be a good indicator. If she's made false allegations before, it should be in her file.

We were considered for a ten year old girl for several months and were very hopeful we'd be matched. We were even asked to go at matching event so we could meet her and her GAL and CW could see how we interacted with her. In the end, we weren't chosen because she had a history of making false sexual abuse allegations and my husband is a teacher. The workers thought he had more to lose by false allegations than most. They NEVER mentioned this in the months we were in talks about her. If they had, it would saved us lots of time and getting our hopes up because we would have said "no" (for exactly the reason they did!)

A couple months after that we were matched with a 9 year old girl. She's been home with us for 11 months and the adoption finalized in November. She does not have a history of any false allegations and my husband is not afraid to be alone with her. He hugs her, drives her to gymnastics, goes on bike rides with her. That's not to say it can't happen, but it could happen with a bio child, too.
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  #7  
Old 04-05-2011, 09:38 AM
millie58 millie58 is offline
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Family isn't the only one who can make false allegations. I had false allegations; I think I know who it was but I'm not sure. I was investigated twice: the first time it was for corporal punishment. CPS was told I was beating my son for a half hour in public!! I smacked him because he was mouthy. Second time, I was home sick; CPS worker comes. It's very scary and unnerving.
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  #8  
Old 04-05-2011, 09:53 AM
Mama_Mo Mama_Mo is offline
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She's been in the care of elderly family members for the past three years, but they have decided that she needs to be with someone younger. She has a good relationship with them and will continue to have a relationship with them after she is adopted so I would highly doubt that she would make a false allegation against them. So...I don't think that there is any "foster care" history to look at....
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  #9  
Old 04-05-2011, 10:47 AM
NotDoneYet NotDoneYet is offline
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I'm in the same boat, we'd love to be open to teen girls but are scared of allegations. Hubby is a youth pastor and almost a middle school teacher and I am worried about his reputation being ruined. Add to that we are youngish(27). We'll talk with our worker and find out her opinion on the matter. I haven't ruled anything out or decided one way or another.
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  #10  
Old 04-05-2011, 01:39 PM
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shall0927 shall0927 is offline
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false allegations are scary, and people who have never ever done anything like stand up to the plate and be a foster parent will tell you all kinds of stories about what they have heard.
I have some experience in this area.
I had a teen make a false alligation against my then husband, she never would say what he did, only that she wasn't safe anymore, we found out later that she had made MANY alligations before, and we were told of NONE! There were also other factors. In the end she decided she didn't want to be adopted (which was the plan at the time) and the whole thing fell apart. She never lived with us, we had been visiting for 4 months.
Also, keep in mind a few things, it doesn't have to be teens to make false alligations. Sometimes little ones will unintentionally make an alligation. An example, I had a 4 1/2 year old, I took her swimming, I was sitting about 4 feet from her, she was on a raft and flipped the raft over. Me my sister and my friend were all right there. Her head went under the water for about a half of a second (litterally) she had never been in a pool before, and she panicked!!! honestly it was absolutly nothing at all....but omg.. she told the whole world about the time she "drowned" in the pool!!! She told her mom, she told her cw, she told everyone... They asked me about it, but that one never became a report...but it could have... sometimes little ones say things a little well..exaggerated!!
lastly, it's important to remember false alligations are not just sexual (although that's probably the worst!!) and they are not just against men...I have had a teen girl who I was very close too make more than one report on me.... one had some partial truth too it...but she added a few details to warrant the report... and the other was just a blantant bold face lie!! Both times this was not a case where she was angry, that's what was so scary about it...both times It was unfounded...

I truly loved being able to be a foster parent to the teens...I am going a different route for now, as I have teen neices and nephews, I have teen ffk that im close too and many of my friends have teens... Im hoping for a baby for a change...but honestly the teens were a lot of fun... a lot of work, and a lot of heart ache but a lot of fun!!

They may report, but it doesn't mean immediately ruining your life... MOST times the cw are familiar with this risk and as long as it's unfounded it will have little effect...
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  #11  
Old 04-06-2011, 10:04 PM
lledreca lledreca is offline
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I've been in the same situation. My wife and I adopted a fourteen year old girl not too long ago and all the same thoughts went through my head at different times. For the first visits, and even up until she was spending summer vacation with us, I was always very careful of what I did with my daughter, and how I did it. I would never be in her room alone with her, I would never sit on her bed while talking to her, I would never drive in a car alone with her.

Eventually I came to the realization that this girl was soon going to be my daughter, and at some point I was just going to have to over come the fear of false allegations and just step out in faith and trust. My daughter had serious trust issues when she first came to be with us... but she overcame them and started trusting me. The least I could do was to show trust back to her.

Now I treat her the same as I treat my three bio kids. I don't hug her any less than I do them, I don't scrutinize every single action I make around her under the lens of "what does this look like to other people?" I simply decided to move past it.

Remember that you are looking to adopt this girl. Keeping yourself informed is half the battle here. If she has been in the system for a significant amount of time and hasn't made false accusations yet, it's unlikely she's going to. But regardless, you are eventually going to have to just take a chance on her... unless the idea of always have to make sure you are never alone with her for the rest of her childhood appeals to you.
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