There are a wide variety of reasons as to why your case may end up in front of DHR. It could be through no fault of your own. You might have a problem with drugs or alcohol. You may have a mental illness. Maybe you made the wrong person angry and vengeful with you and now you’re having to defend yourself against false allegations. Regardless of whether you or someone else were the cause of drama from DHR you now have a heavy burden on your shoulders. It’s not an easy burden to bear because the truth of the matter is, DHR is powerful. They are better than Ironman with his slew of powerful suits. They’re more powerful than Chuck Norris on a good day. So what should you do if DHR becomes involved in your life?
- Cooperate with DHR. There’s a saying that if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. In this case, just don’t try to beat them. You should ALWAYS attempt to negotiate and cooperate with DHR. They don’t know you from Aunt Sally Murderer down the street. They don’t have to trust you. They hear people from all areas of life, and around town, who have lied to them, and are dang good at it. They are mistrustful because that is their job. If you cooperate, and do what they ask, they’re more likely to trust you.
- Do not cuss out or get violent with DHR. I don’t care if the caseworker walks in and says something derogatory about Bear Bryant’s photo, or your Jorden Hare Stadium puzzle. I don’t care if you feel she is judging you, or if you feel she is against you, you should do everything in your power to refrain from losing your temper in every possible way with your caseworker and DHR in general. Much like the previous order to “cooperate” you should refrain from using any word that your momma would have felt could only be rectified with a mouth full of soap.
- Contact an Attorney immediately. Do not contact an attorney who thinks DHR is the devil. Do not try to make this a Supreme Court case. Find an attorney who has a good relationship with DHR, who knows the system, and who will look out for your CHILD’S best interests. Your attorney may not be happy that you’re still doing meth but you need an attorney who will tell you that, not one who will try to convince you that the state is out to get you. However, we’re not saying that if your child has been taken away for no reason, that you should lay down and take it, but take the logical approach to fixing the situation. You don’t douse a fire with gasoline. I repeat number 2 and number 1.
- Call all possible relatives to be at the initial court hearing. There is always a chance that something will come out of the woodwork that could risk your child having to go into foster care. For the worst case scenario, bring a list of all relatives that would take your child on a temporary basis to your attorney, and have your attorney do a background check to ensure that DHR won’t rule them out as a placement possibility. Do not choose Uncle Bob with the meth problem, or Cousin Jo with the trafficking charge. Call your uber religious aunt, regardless of how she feels about you, because chances are she will be your biggest help.
- Get help. If DHR requests it, what was it that I said in number 1? Oh, cooperate. Yes. Cooperate. Get drug evaluations, domestic violence evaluations, counseling. If it is determined that these were false allegations against you, they may not ask much of you, or you may not need this number. However, if there is an issue, whether it be drugs, violence, or mental illness get the help that you need so that you can help yourself get your child back.