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  #1  
Old 03-18-2019, 02:52 PM
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Default Going to Court Question Please Help

Hi ladies,

I posted about this issue the other day. I have a family that I take care of their two kids. They are now divorced. I donít deal with the dad anymore. The mom still has them coming here 2 days a week and the dad pulled them from my care and put them in kindercare. The reason he gave is he felt like the wife was watching him, and was a threat to him. He has very odd strange paranoid behavior. The mom sent me a text today telling me that her lawyer said I have to go to court whether I like it or not to testify about the behavior I witnessed from him. I absolutely do not want to do this. I donít want to take sides in court and he will get very angry because heís never really done anything to me. Iím afraid if i have to go to court and say anything against him he will ruin my business. Iím not sure why the mom is dragging me in this. What can I do? Do I have to go to court? Iím sick over this. Today she got a restraining order against him and heís lost 2 weeks of custody with the kids. I just donít want to take sides. Has anyone dealt with this isssue?
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  #2  
Old 03-18-2019, 03:44 PM
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Have you received a subpoena?
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  #3  
Old 03-18-2019, 03:45 PM
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I have not received a subpoena yet.
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Old 03-18-2019, 04:02 PM
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I dont know what to say, did you explain to the mom that due to state regulations that you cannot get involved or did you explain to mom that you are a mandated reporter and that if you suspect something that you would contact dhr?
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Old 03-18-2019, 04:08 PM
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I did but sheís not hearing it. I better check what my state laws are. Iím not licensed since I only keep 4 kids and itís not required so Iím not sure it would even apply to me.
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Old 03-18-2019, 04:21 PM
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Even though you aren't licensed, I would call your local licensing agency. They may have some resources and guidance for you.

On a side note, I would be all done caring for this family. Mom has no respect for your boundaries and the dad obviously makes you nervous. I'd be getting them all our of my house and life ASAP!
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  #7  
Old 03-18-2019, 04:26 PM
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Hi ladies,

I posted about this issue the other day. I have a family that I take care of their two kids. They are now divorced. I donít deal with the dad anymore. The mom still has them coming here 2 days a week and the dad pulled them from my care and put them in kindercare. The reason he gave is he felt like the wife was watching him, and was a threat to him. He has very odd strange paranoid behavior. The mom sent me a text today telling me that her lawyer said I have to go to court whether I like it or not to testify about the behavior I witnessed from him. I absolutely do not want to do this. I donít want to take sides in court and he will get very angry because heís never really done anything to me. Iím afraid if i have to go to court and say anything against him he will ruin my business. Iím not sure why the mom is dragging me in this. What can I do? Do I have to go to court? Iím sick over this. Today she got a restraining order against him and heís lost 2 weeks of custody with the kids. I just donít want to take sides. Has anyone dealt with this isssue?
If she was granted a restraining order then she doesnít need anything from you.

Does she fear heíd hurt/harm the kids?

If not, they deserve access to their father regardless of how mom feels about him.

Theyíre divorced from each other not their children (each of them) and the kids should have a right to unbiased time with both of them.
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Old 03-18-2019, 05:19 PM
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No subpoena = no court appearance
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  #9  
Old 03-18-2019, 05:24 PM
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I dealt with similar issue last year. Mom wanted me to serve a restraining order and divorce papers. I told her absolutely not. She pulled the next day. Dad retaliated, asked me to testify on his behalf, I again said no. Dad denied mom to talk to or see child for 3 months.
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Old 03-18-2019, 05:33 PM
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Iíll call in the morning to find out what the laws are. I told the mom again I do not want to go to court. Since she thinks he has the potential to be harmful she is saying I would be helping the children. 🙄 Iím just going to have to wait and see what happens this week.
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Old 03-19-2019, 04:59 AM
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I would tell mom to find new care. If she thinks he is potentially harmful then you can no longer care for the children.
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  #12  
Old 03-19-2019, 05:01 AM
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She is full of it.

He is not paranoid, he is being smart. This is common advice for equality in fathers rights. He should not have ongoing strings with her post-divorce. He is free to choose where his kids go and what they do on his time. He is an equal parent. She needs to back off.

She does not get to control him anymore, he is free of her and the kids do not belong to her. That is the blessing of divorce, he is free of her control and gets to enjoy parenting his kids his way, on his time, without her interference.

She sounds like a real piece of work to me. Her days of owning him are over and she needs to let go or she may lose much more than control.

She also does not get to control you. Her golden uterus days are over. She is 50% of her kids' life, now.
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Old 03-19-2019, 06:08 AM
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Hi ladies,

I posted about this issue the other day. I have a family that I take care of their two kids. They are now divorced. I don’t deal with the dad anymore. The mom still has them coming here 2 days a week and the dad pulled them from my care and put them in kindercare. The reason he gave is he felt like the wife was watching him, and was a threat to him. He has very odd strange paranoid behavior. The mom sent me a text today telling me that her lawyer said I have to go to court whether I like it or not to testify about the behavior I witnessed from him. I absolutely do not want to do this. I don’t want to take sides in court and he will get very angry because he’s never really done anything to me. I’m afraid if i have to go to court and say anything against him he will ruin my business. I’m not sure why the mom is dragging me in this. What can I do? Do I have to go to court? I’m sick over this. Today she got a restraining order against him and he’s lost 2 weeks of custody with the kids. I just don’t want to take sides. Has anyone dealt with this isssue?
I would terminate care with mom for sure. Let her know that being drug into their custody battle is not acceptable in your daycare. If you are served the subpoena, you will abide by what the law says you have to do, but the only information you have concerning dad is that he paid on time, showed up on time, and his kids were in good health(if that was the case). Beyond that, any other info is purely speculation or second hand info from the mom. You weren't in their home with them, you are not involved in their private life, so you cant really give a fair statement on what happened outside of daycare. As far as dad's paranoia, he was worried about the mothers behavior, and to his credit, he may have had a point, since she was able to get a restraining order and he lost some custody of his children. If there is more to his story, they have plenty of other people they can go to to find out and cooberate her story. The daycare provider is the person with the least info concerning dad's Behavior. We see the parents for less than 20 minutes each day, so there are plenty of other people in his life who spend far more time with him.

But regardless of whether you end up having to testify, the mother has pushed the boundary too far and now she needs to be terminated. Daycare is a neutral environment for the sake of the child. The provider should never be used as a pawn in a parental custody battle. The only time a provider should be involved, is if abuse is suspected or seen, in which case, the provider would report that directly to the state. If you've never felt the need to report this father prior to this event, then the only information you can offer is whether he paid on time, showed up on time, and his kids were in good health. And if he did those things, you may end up helping dads case more than hurting it. Good luck to you!
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Old 03-19-2019, 06:11 AM
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Iíll call in the morning to find out what the laws are. I told the mom again I do not want to go to court. Since she thinks he has the potential to be harmful she is saying I would be helping the children. 🙄 Iím just going to have to wait and see what happens this week.
If I were you, I'd start pointing out the positives in what you have observed with the father. Regardless of how he makes you feel or if you think he's weird etc or not.

Let her know that ethically, morally and legally you must state your observations in an unbiased manner without malice or personal feeling in support of either parent as your role is CHILD advocate.

Odds are once she understands that you will be shining a light on him as a parent, she'll back off.

I also HIGHLY doubt her lawyer said you have to go to court whether you like it or not. Lawyers don't generally speak that way. They subpoena you.

I'd also let this mother know that if she coerces her attorney into getting a supoena for you, that SHE will be responsible for ALL lost wages for you as well as any other costs you may incur having to be part of this mess.

I'd rethink calling her a friend too... she's definitely not behaving as one in regards to your feels or your profession as a provider. Those actions say alot about what type of a person she is. (*selfish )
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  #15  
Old 03-19-2019, 06:23 AM
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If you dont get a subpoena then you dont have to go. If you do, tell what you saw but explain you dont feel he is harmful to the kids otherwise you would have reported it. He shouldnt be mad at that...
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  #16  
Old 03-19-2019, 07:18 AM
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No subpoena = no court appearance

This! If you felt the child was ever in danger, you would have reported it. I would also tell mom that you saw no concerning behaviors from dad and would report that to the judge. As long as dad has a healthy relationship with the kids, it's in their best interest to have 2 parents in their life.
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Old 03-19-2019, 07:19 AM
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Originally Posted by mommyneedsadayoff View Post
I would terminate care with mom for sure. Let her know that being drug into their custody battle is not acceptable in your daycare. If you are served the subpoena, you will abide by what the law says you have to do, but the only information you have concerning dad is that he paid on time, showed up on time, and his kids were in good health(if that was the case). Beyond that, any other info is purely speculation or second hand info from the mom.

this is good advice. only testify/write a statement when and if your subpoenaed . some family court issues dont actually happen in a court room but in mediation and you may be sent/served a questionnaire from the court. if you are subpoenaed, dont ignore it ( i dont think anyone would) stick with things like the dad did/didnt do these things then list them off ex: drop off pick up on time, come pick up when child is sick, fill out proper paperwork, bring proper supplies, pay on time. any results that you think important of daily wellness check ( that mental check you do at drop off like notice runny noses, see scrapped knees and marks etc). make it known that you are a required reporter and that your required by your state ( if the laws in your state are there) that you are to remain neutral. only answer questions asked of you. dont expand or explain further or offer any other info other than whats questioned of you. i do think termination of care should also be your next step, either way this situation doesnt sound like it will end well. either the mom will be mad because you kicked her out and that prob will come with a bad review and some type of negative connotation about you to anyone she meets. or she will be mad and upset about the info you provide when subpoenaed.
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  #18  
Old 03-19-2019, 08:38 AM
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Definitely replace this family, too!
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  #19  
Old 03-27-2019, 08:17 AM
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I keep 4 and am license exempt as well. I also had this situation a couple of years ago. I was frank with Dad, told him that going to court would require me to close, which would cost *someone* money to replace my missed wages, as well as the fact that I would be inconveniencing my DC families (including his) and that I don't prefer to do that for something that's not even my issue. I added that the only things I would have to say were positive ones since I'd seen no mistreatment on Mom's side and lastly I really didn't like being put in the middle of a personal issue between them when they were both my clients (I also kept Dad's new stepson and Mom's new baby from her new marriage. This all was about their 4 year old son that they had together.) I didn't term because he took my feelings into account and dropped it. I would have termed if he had pushed it.

You have to stay neutral here. Unless you get a subpoena, you don't have to do anything, but I would have a similar conversation as I did ASAP where you let her know how badly this is going to end up for her if she continues to push it. I would not continue care if you are subpoenaed and I would tell her your intentions in advance. I say all of this assuming you have no concern for the child's wellbeing (ie: no signs of abuse or actual neglect). If you do, the authorities should be notified, but you should not be a part of a custody battle. This is business, not personal.
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Old 03-27-2019, 09:38 AM
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I was subponed many years ago to testify. The attorney deposed me over the phone to see if I was actually needed so I did not have to close my daycare. At the time I was only licensed for 6 and did not have a helper. The dad was not happy that I told the truth. It was not flattering for him.

So here is my personal experience. This is about the child. Itís not about me, mom or dad.

I was the only constant thing in this boys life with all the changes he was experiencing. Did I want to terminate due to not wanting to be involved? Not for one minute. We are a huge part of these childrenís lives.

I know it is easy to ditch the problem. I always ask myself ďif this was my child, what would I want ď?

So my advice , BE HONEST NO MATTER WHAT! Oh and tell her you need to be subponed to go.
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Old 03-27-2019, 02:19 PM
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I got a subpoena today to show up in court on Monday. I am beyond upset! I called her lawyer and went off on her. I called the mom as well and told her that she is greatly inconveniencing me but she wonít let up. I even have a new family starting on Monday and now I have to tell them I canít work. This is just so unfair. I told her lawyer not to subpoena me earlier this week. I spoke to her in the phone and she seemed to understand. Now this😩
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Old 03-27-2019, 02:34 PM
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Did you send your termination notice today?
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Old 03-27-2019, 02:37 PM
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Iím going to on Friday. But whatís that going to solve? I still have to go to court. Iím going to call the clerk of the court tomorrow and tell them my situation and see if I can get out of it.
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Old 03-27-2019, 02:57 PM
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I got a subpoena today to show up in court on Monday. I am beyond upset! I called her lawyer and went off on her. I called the mom as well and told her that she is greatly inconveniencing me but she wonít let up. I even have a new family starting on Monday and now I have to tell them I canít work. This is just so unfair. I told her lawyer not to subpoena me earlier this week. I spoke to her in the phone and she seemed to understand. Now this😩
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Iím going to on Friday. But whatís that going to solve? I still have to go to court. Iím going to call the clerk of the court tomorrow and tell them my situation and see if I can get out of it.
I'm sorry.

Let mom know you plan on sharing all the positives for dad as well. She might be sorry she had her lawyer send a supoena your way.

She strong armed you into being a witness for her and I hope it backfires on her. It speaks volumes about her inability to put anyone's needs/feelings above her own. (I'd make sure to mention that to her attorney as well... )
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Old 03-27-2019, 02:58 PM
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Thank you blackcat. You always have the best advice.
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Old 03-27-2019, 06:23 PM
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I'm so sorry that you are going through this. Dad acts paranoid and mom pushes you around.
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Old 03-27-2019, 08:37 PM
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I am sorry you are going through this.
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Old 03-28-2019, 04:27 AM
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Iím going to on Friday. But whatís that going to solve? I still have to go to court. Iím going to call the clerk of the court tomorrow and tell them my situation and see if I can get out of it.
It wonít solve your situation in having to go to court but it will at least solve your problem of having to see her or him in your house ever again. That would make me feel at least a little better. Iím so sorry youíre dealing with this!!!!
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Old 03-28-2019, 05:50 AM
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It wonít solve your situation in having to go to court but it will at least solve your problem of having to see her or him in your house ever again. That would make me feel at least a little better. Iím so sorry youíre dealing with this!!!!
Yes, this. Iíd have trouble letting someone into my home each day who had such little regard for your feelings on the matter. Not to mention the fact that you have to close on short notice, with a new family starting. Dcm knows the position she is putting you in, and just doesnít care.
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Old 03-28-2019, 06:10 AM
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I got a subpoena today to show up in court on Monday. I am beyond upset! I called her lawyer and went off on her. I called the mom as well and told her that she is greatly inconveniencing me but she won’t let up. I even have a new family starting on Monday and now I have to tell them I can’t work. This is just so unfair. I told her lawyer not to subpoena me earlier this week. I spoke to her in the phone and she seemed to understand. Now this��
What is the subpoena asking you to supply?

Your physical presence or actual documents?

You can have DCM direct her attorney to file a motion squashing the subpoena if there is nothing (other than mom's idea that you will color her as a perfect parent) requested in the subpoena that is truly needed.

If you let DCM know you will be speaking on BOTH parents behalf and you will NOT give "opinions" or character witness statements that are supportive of her due to her actions (having her attorney subpoena you) and that you may ultimately have to file restitution or a civil case against her to recoup your lost wages etc for having to close child care or hire a sub to appear in court.

Her attorney can file a motion and squash the subpoena so that your presence is not required. If they (DCM and her attorney) feel you have documentation that supports her case they can ask for copies but your physical presence is not necessary.
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Old 03-28-2019, 11:11 AM
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I was subpoenaed over the summer to testify on behalf of a former DCM. Her attorney had me write an affidavit as to what I witnessed, and I was not required to attend court.
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Old 03-29-2019, 06:04 AM
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They still want you to go after you said you wont say anything negative about him and will stay neutral for the child? Did you ever make that clear?
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  #33  
Old 03-29-2019, 06:29 AM
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Iím going to on Friday. But whatís that going to solve? I still have to go to court. Iím going to call the clerk of the court tomorrow and tell them my situation and see if I can get out of it.
Thinking about you this morning...

Hoping this whole thing has a good outcome for you.

Keep us posted!
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Old 03-29-2019, 07:13 AM
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Thinking about you this morning...

Hoping this whole thing has a good outcome for you.

Keep us posted!
Yes! Please update us.

Thinking of you today!
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Old 04-01-2019, 12:43 PM
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Wow, I can't believe the selfishness of this person! I'll be watching for an update.
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  #36  
Old 04-01-2019, 01:02 PM
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I hope you got out of this, and if not, hope you didn't lose the new family because of it.
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Old 05-29-2019, 07:15 PM
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Sorry everyone! I never told you guys what happened. They ended up not having me testify! They told me the day before. Thank goodness! Thanks for all your advice.
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Old 05-30-2019, 06:12 AM
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Sorry everyone! I never told you guys what happened. They ended up not having me testify! They told me the day before. Thank goodness! Thanks for all your advice.
Thank goodness! I am glad it worked out well for you!
It's so hard when families try to put their provider in the middle.
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  #39  
Old 05-30-2019, 06:19 AM
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Did you terminate care for the mom?
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Old 05-30-2019, 12:43 PM
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Thank goodness! I am glad it worked out well for you!
It's so hard when families try to put their provider in the middle.
I was so happy and relieved.
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  #41  
Old 05-30-2019, 12:46 PM
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Did you terminate care for the mom?
Iím embarrassed to say I did not! I have had the hardest time ever filling spots. Iíve never been through this before. Iíve lost so much of my income. I use to get calls from Craigslist but not anymore. I have 6 different ads and I repost them 3 times a day. I try and advertise on facebook as well. I may have to get a job outside of the home.
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  #42  
Old 05-30-2019, 02:13 PM
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I think this is a good reminder to really stay out of peoples business. Sometimes we take a sympathetic ear to a complaining spouse and we might agree or say things ourselves and the next thing you know they want us to testify on their behalf. I am not saying the OP did this I am simply saying that a person has less of a chance to see you as ďon their sideĒ and wanting you to go on trial to be negative about the other parent if we said absolutely nothing when they complained.

Glad it worked out in the end for you
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Old 05-30-2019, 02:58 PM
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Iím embarrassed to say I did not! I have had the hardest time ever filling spots. Iíve never been through this before. Iíve lost so much of my income. I use to get calls from Craigslist but not anymore. I have 6 different ads and I repost them 3 times a day. I try and advertise on facebook as well. I may have to get a job outside of the home.
First... daycare is not overnight cash as many seem to believe; it can take months to get full. Also, posting on CL more than every 48 hrs will get you banned if they find out its same poster even if different ads; facebook is hit or miss & not worth it IMO.

Flyers in Pediatrician offices, children stores, left in library books for age appropriate. If you are state legal, post at Social services office with a flyer, especially if you will take state vouchers... that is a hit or miss in certain states, so beware... some states take a few months to pay, some don't; get on food program if you can
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Old 05-30-2019, 03:19 PM
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LysesKids LysesKids is offline
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Originally Posted by Dsquared View Post
Sorry everyone! I never told you guys what happened. They ended up not having me testify! They told me the day before. Thank goodness! Thanks for all your advice.
And yes, glad it worked out... I personally had a clause in the policies & contract (up until last year when I quit daycare) that I would not allow parents to put in me in a position of going to court for one or the other; it meant instant termination if I was expected to side one way or another... I believe BC had the perfect paragraph to put int policies to keep parents from asking you to side one way or another... I know my policies did the trick, ( I'll have to look up the last copy as website is closed down)
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