Indecent Images Charge. Advice please on working positively with Children's Serivices

London
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Indecent Images Charge. Advice please on working positively with Children's Serivices

Postby London » Tue May 23, 2017 11:34 am

Hi.
Well, unfortunately I have to add myself to the list of people that will soon face indecent images charges.

I have no idea what kind of sentence I'll get. Whatever the sentence is, it seems that with a family, the real tough time happens after the sentencing once Children's Services are involved.

Briefly, my situation is that my wife is sticking by me and wants me to stay as part of the family along with our 2 children. Currently I'm on bail and living at home as long as there's supervised access with the children. But, as I've read from other cases, all that will change post sentencing.

So what I'd like to know from anyone who has been in a similar position... i.e. wanting to stay together as a family, and eventually work towards residency... what advice have you got in terms of working with Children's Services? Are there any courses (for me or my partner?) or positive actions to work on to better the situation? Do's and don'ts? etc.

As rare as they might be, I'd like to hear of any positive advice or at the very least, constructive advice. I've read ALL the negative advice there is , much to my detriment, about how "you'll never be with your family again" etc... I'm not trying to bury my head in the sand - I'm just trying to stay positive in what seems like an impossible situation.

Thanks for your time.

London

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
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Re: Indecent Images Charge. Advice please on working positively with Children's Serivices

Postby Suzie, FRG Adviser » Wed May 24, 2017 2:56 pm

Dear London,

Welcome to the Parents Forum,

There are a number of people on the Forum who have been in your position, so have a look at their threads and you will see how things are managed by different local authorities. They may also come on your thread and advise you as well.

You could also contact the Lucy Faithfull Foundation for advice and support for you, your children and your partner.

Here is some tips about working with children services , advice sheet –introduction to children services and look at assessments which links off to more detailed advice sheets about child protection and family support.

I hope these links help but if you need further advice, please post again.

Best wishes,

Suzie

PerfectlySafeDad
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Re: Indecent Images Charge. Advice please on working positively with Children's Serivices

Postby PerfectlySafeDad » Sat Jul 29, 2017 3:33 am

Hi London. You are right in fearing CS involvement in the aftermath. I'm a Dad of 2 sons, 8 months into a 3 year community order for possession (about 1000 images, 300 being the 'worst'), and 5 years on the register. Alas, I suspect that worse for me (in regards to my contact prospects) is that I also got charged with publishing child-porn stories, even though it's the lesser charge criminally-speaking. I think I have been absolutely hammered, from a risk assessment perspective, because of what has been seen to be 'inside my head' in addition to what I actually DID wrong - zero contact offence, zero grooming - but my problem is I was seen to fantasise about such things. This brings me to key advice for you...
If you are revealed to have fantasised about ANY children, on top of 'merely' (a relative term) accessing illegal images, it will be tougher for your family prospects.
Be realistic about what they will find: confess as early as possible to everything on there.
You need to show regret, remorse and a desire to disown the offending behaviour as soon as possible.
Remember that Children's Services are looking for risk risk risk and the police for whatever they can conceivably prosecute, regardless of the effect on your family or indeed your children. They are utterly ruthless, all of them, and especially dangerous when they appear to be interacting kindly with you (they are merely extracting info).
The investigation, prosecution and subsequent social services involvement is one big balancing act with being truly remorseful (and showing it) but not divulging anything more than necessary that they can hammer you (and your family life) with.
Very important: no matter how much anxiety or despair you may feel, do not show it to CS or anybody that might feed it to CS, or this will get factored into an emotional risk to your kids on top of the sexual one. In other words, display remorse coupled with strength and stability.
Use the Samaritans if you must, trust nobody else except perhaps a private counsellor you are paying for.
Take practical steps as early as possible to show you are getting help for your offending. I got sick of hearing about Lucy Faithful (the only line they take is that you are a drooling offender who can't stop without help), instead I paid for a private counsellor who both supported me through the investigation and explored my issues with me, writing up a good report of the work we'd done in time for my pre-sentence report for court. This kept me out of jail and established me as a person committed to not offending ever again. Even though all the so-called experts seem to think you are more likely to relapse than a heroine addict (which is IMO is a not necessarily so whatsoever, but do not argue it, or your risk assessment will go up - just accept and engage with whatever 'help' and courses they offer.
Be as stable as possible in your relationship with spouse, even though you may experience appalling pressure, or CS will factor any strife or emotional tension into their safeguarding strictures with your kids.
Do everything in your life, and be seen to, that shows you are living as normally as possible with healthy hobbies and preferably a good job, and keeping good company.
Show 'insight' (a favourite word) into the reason what you did is a crime, and the impact on the victims. Criminal Law is that children abused in images you have never met and have no idea of their identity and did not pay for it or order the images, but some other guy somewhere else in the world sexually assaulted them or filmed it, whereas you merely 'looked at' are nevertheless YOUR victims, and you are responsible for their abuse. Make sure the police, your lawyer, your counsellor and finally the court and probation and CS know that you know this and you hate yourself for it.
If your images are at the mildest end and low in number (less than 20, say) you might possible get away with a caution - but unlikely in today's climate, and in any case you'd still be viewed by CS as a posssible abuser-to-be, and would need to take all the steps I mention above.

PerfectlySafeDad
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Re: Indecent Images Charge. Advice please on working positively with Children's Serivices

Postby PerfectlySafeDad » Thu Aug 03, 2017 3:15 pm

By the way, London, you did not mention how old are your children. This could be significant because if you have already lived as a family for some time, and no concerns of abuse or history with Social Services - ie happy, healthy children - then they may be more convinced as to your safety. Basically the logic being 'if he had any inclination to do anything to them, he'd have done it by now.'
However, they often appear to be bereft of logic and devoid of trust. I think an environment with children of, say, age 10, is definitely more favourable than a parent with babies, toddlers or unborn child. This would be because, from their perspective, your parenting safety and the dynamics of your attitude to your children is completely 'untested' so to speak. From what I have read on this site, it does seem to be those parents who have the most nightmarish involvement from CS. All they see is Sex Offender, and society is not yet advanced enough to see that an SO, even at the mildest end, can be a perfectly safe and loving parent. It took us a century for homosexuals to get that recognition, but alas it will be at least one more before the complexities of human nature re. sex offences are understood, especially in the realm of internet offending.

Chancing
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Re: Indecent Images Charge. Advice please on working positively with Children's Serivices

Postby Chancing » Fri Aug 11, 2017 11:31 am

As the partner of an SO who served a significant jail sentence for his offences I can assure you it is possible to work with child welfare successfully.
I have 4 children, none of which are his, two of which are the age of his victim at the time of his offences. 16-19.

The fact is as the offender there is little you can do to improve the situation, the onus is on your wife to prove she is a suitable protector for your children.

Most people fail because of their attitude towards the welfare services.
I'd remind you these are people who have to go home at night after seeing your children, and hope they haven't made the wrong decision in letting you stay.
It may seem obvious to you that you wouldn't harm your own children, but if someone had asked you five years ago if you'd be watching kiddie porn for kicks I suspect you would have been outraged.
So I don't think it's so difficult to see why they might make the leap to you abusing your children.
This is why they will lean heavily on your partner to prove her interest is the safety of the children over your relationship.
None of this is easy, I have been through the hoops.
I have been interviewed by the public protection unit, had to discuss with them intimate details of my partners offences, which were physical, not internet.
Had to discuss our sex life and relationship with his workers and my family social worker.
Had to face the school being informed.
Had to accept there would be no sleep overs or kids parties, to protect ourselves from being at risk should people find out what he did.
Parents will not be forgiving if they discover their children are in the home with a SO.

I am not bitter, or angry about the process, we went through 8 months of pretty intense meetings and work.
But my children, the youngest of which is 11, are off the register.
My partner can stay over, there are no stipulations on supervision, despite them not being his.

Lucy Faithful isn't for everyone but they are there to work with paedophiles, this is why their work is geared the way it is.
Sexual preference isn't a choice, it's hard wired, with this in mind they work on prevention, and managing these desires and urges.
This doesn't sit well with a lot of internet offenders,because they tend to believe they haven't actually done anything.
That is a debate for another time. But i don't feel it's a very productive or helpful attitude to take.
And it definitely doesn't wash with welfare.

I wish you and your partner all the best. Feel free to PM me if you have any questions, although I have posted a thread about successfully negotiating child welfare. But if there is something more specific you would like to know, I can tell you how managed to make it through.

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Suzie, FRG Adviser
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Re: Indecent Images Charge. Advice please on working positively with Children's Serivices

Postby Suzie, FRG Adviser » Fri Aug 11, 2017 11:51 am

Dear Chancing

Thank you for posting again and for giving very helpful advice from your own experiences on this thread to London.

Your responses to posts are always helpful and supportive.

Best wishes

Suzie

PerfectlySafeDad
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Re: Indecent Images Charge. Advice please on working positively with Children's Serivices

Postby PerfectlySafeDad » Mon Aug 14, 2017 12:17 am

@Chancing, it does give hope for us all that you seem to have negotiated something close to freedom for you and your partner, despite a very serious offending history. I dread to think how long this took you, and how much strength and legal help and costs. The problem for many parents in similar positions is that they feel extremely weak and fragile, in contrast to a thick-skinned bureaucracy. Heartbreak is all in a day's work to them.
I can only repeat my own sentiments in this (which I am sure echo 90% of IOC cases: investigation long since done, no evidence of any contact or grooming, no prior history, no prior family trouble whatsoever - why the F. can I not be trusted alone with my children who love me? (8 months since sentencing now, and an SHPO that permits my wife to consent to it, yet the CS threaten her not to). It's appalling. Emotions run high. It actually CREATES damage and risk. My sons are in danger of growing up to he brainwashed into thinking I was a risk to them. They're missing out on valuable formative times with their Dad - yes, I should have thought of all this before looking at IOC, but hey it was a sickness, as it was with many of us, and it's fundamentally wrong to persecute it through the courts, the media and then CS bullying. It should be recognised that family reconstruction is the heart of healing, instead of risible back-covering basically because they're 'too busy or too ignorant'. It's just offensive (deliberate choice of word). One has to question who are the sickest people in all this.
Also, FYI, it is often not a 'sexual orientation' at all - not something we were born with, but slid into and can very easily disown it because of the monumental trauma and self-loathing it's caused. Say this to a probation worker or CS director, though, and they look at you as if talking Martian. So far I've actually managed to get glowing reports from probation, because I learnt I had to allow myself to be browbeaten into 'admitting' I need help to stop reoffending - as if I'd ever want to go through this hell and stigma again! It's one of the great fallacies promoted to give the authorities the justification for the easy option - draconian measures.


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