For me, September 10 is a dark day. This year, it was the fourth anniversary of my last “therapeutic, supervised visit” with my girls.
The visit was supposed to finally take place at my home and mark the onset of the resumption of unsupervised visits, that my girls and I had been deprived of since May 2002.
One more time since May 2002, I had prepared my apartment for the girls’ visit. I wanted them to have the feeling that everything had been waiting for them since they last have came. Retrospectively, I was incredibly naive: my ex-wife had successfully put pressure on Spitzer, the director of the agency in charge of supervising my visitations with the girls, to have the social worker, who had mapped a quick resumption of my “normal” visitations at my place, to be out of my case. In Manhattan Family court, there is nobody to stand for father and children rights against an alienating mother. But when you are in the unthinkable situation of being deprived of the right to see your children, you hang on to the slightest, slippery rope that Family court throws at you.
I will always remember meeting the girls and the new Comprehensive Family Service social worker on 145 street and Broadway. My oldest daughter, Camille, was supposed to be aware that the visit would be at my place. Somehow,she seemed to learn the news this very day and she does not like it. On the way to my place, she started crying and stated she did not want to come to my place. She was in fact professing her loyalty to her mum, whose position in the trial would be shaken by a visit at my place, as it would prove that seeing me without supervision is possible and the trial she initiated was meaningless.
We arrived at my building. Chloé wanted to go up, Camille did not. I realized that the social worker, Kisha Parrish, did not know how to handle the situation. She called mum to encourage the girls to go on with the visit. Surprise, surprise, mum’s encouragements are inexistent. She turns to her boss, who is clueless. Like George Bush the first with Dan Quayle, Spitzer has hired Parris because there was no danger than she would seem smarter than him. In the meantime, I tried to convince Camille that she has nothing to fear. After all, the visit is supervised. My neighbors, who know my girls, go in and out and say hi to our strange group.
Suddenly, without even consulting with me, the social worker took the girls and left. I was speechless. I followed them to Broadway, to put them in a cab.
Assessment of the visit by the law guardian, Garline Octobre and Judge Sturm: everything is fine. Both would recommend the continuation of the same rotten recipe of “therapeutic, supervised” visitations with the same people.
September 10, 2005 was my last visitations and the last time I saw my girls. Since then, I have been at least twice a year in court for “unreimbursed medical expenses.” Alienated girls who don’t see their fathers? Manhattan Family court could care less.