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Children with Asthma/Chronic Illness Custody Battle in The Middle

I am a grieving Mother, my son John was taken from me, passed away from complications with his asthma. With being born premature of 27 weeks, his lungs were not fully developed. He has been in and out of the hospital since his first attack at 18 mos old. My ex husband never believed his condition was severe. I was the one who took my son to his Doctor's appointment, followed his treatment plan to the letter. My husband and I grew apart, he filled for divorce and separation. I had a steady income, but was involved in a car accident. I also have chronic illness. I wasn't able to afford legal counsel for this very complicated divorce. Because of that I had the book thrown at me by the judge in our county. He ended up getting more shared time with John. Needless to say, .my son suffered, medicines were not given, he did not follow his allergist treatment plan. My ex kept telling people in my community, that I overly medicated our son. My ex charged his pediatrician, to someone else. Stop taking him to the allergist that he was seeing for years. The school my son was attending, didn't help matters at all. His inhalers were not used during recess. When I was contacted about my 8 year old son, his was already deceased. My heart breaks every hour, because I couldn't been there to help him. Seeing my beautiful child in a casket, really changed my life for me. No one should have to go though that. We are not suppose to bury our children. Because of the fact I didn't have the funding to retain an attorney, my fight was limited. I want to be an advocate, for children and mothers/fathers going though a custody battle. So there is non-profits to help with other expenses, so no one loses a child. Children don't need to be involved in the middle custody battle with Chronic illness. It is hard enough on their little bodies to control asthma, diabetes, epilepsy.

Thank you for hearing me out

Angela Randle- Ringo

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Comments 12

  • K8sMom2002

    Welcome, Angela … I am incredibly sorry to hear of the loss of your son. It sounds like you did everything in your power to help your son, and I think it is wonderful that you want to advocate for others.

    AAFA has a private forum for grieving forums as well. You aren't alone … we're here for you.

  • Monique Cooper-Allison
    Angela Randle-Ringo posted:

    I am a grieving Mother, my son John was taken from me, passed away from complications with his asthma. With being born premature of 27 weeks, his lungs were not fully developed. He has been in and out of the hospital since his first attack at 18 mos old. My ex husband never believed his condition was severe. I was the one who took my son to his Doctor's appointment, followed his treatment plan to the letter. My husband and I grew apart, he filled for divorce and separation. I had a steady income, but was involved in a car accident. I also have chronic illness. I wasn't able to afford legal counsel for this very complicated divorce. Because of that I had the book thrown at me by the judge in our county. He ended up getting more shared time with John. Needless to say, .my son suffered, medicines were not given, he did not follow his allergist treatment plan. My ex kept telling people in my community, that I overly medicated our son. My ex charged his pediatrician, to someone else. Stop taking him to the allergist that he was seeing for years. The school my son was attending, didn't help matters at all. His inhalers were not used during recess. When I was contacted about my 8 year old son, his was already deceased. My heart breaks every hour, because I couldn't been there to help him. Seeing my beautiful child in a casket, really changed my life for me. No one should have to go though that. We are not suppose to bury our children. Because of the fact I didn't have the funding to retain an attorney, my fight was limited. I want to be an advocate, for children and mothers/fathers going though a custody battle. So there is non-profits to help with other expenses, so no one loses a child. Children don't need to be involved in the middle custody battle with Chronic illness. It is hard enough on their little bodies to control asthma, diabetes, epilepsy.

    Thank you for hearing me out

    Angela Randle- Ringo

    I'm so sorry for your lost. My son is 11 and he suffers from asthma, I can only imagine. My husband and I are advocates for families with kids that has asthma. My husband was once that guy who didn't take it serious. I had to educate him. 

  • Kathy P

    Hi Angela – I'm so very sorry to hear about the loss of your son. Stories like yours are what drives AAFA as we continue to advocate for families managing asthma. With your permission, I can add you to the private area for grieving families.

    I'm moved by your courage to channel your loss into advocacy to help others. AAFA has a number of ways that we could help you with your goal. We can help you find ways to raise awareness and educate others in your community. I'm happy to start that conversation with you. You can email me at  and we can figure how best to connect.

  • Angela Randle-Ringo

    Thank you so very much, I truly appreciate you support though your comments. Education is key regarding children with chronic illness. 

     

  • Shea

    I am so so so sorry to hear about your loss Angela and I am so upset by the court's actions.  It really is the worst thing ever and it hits close to home for me too. It is horrible when another parent can separate and pull a child away from a loving mother such as yourself, and all the care you had provided— and it is not right. I feel like the courts should be sued but I dont know how.. I am not a lawyer.. I am just very upset with their actions in not supporting you as your child's mother.

    I have had to struggle with the courts and my son (now age 7 but the struggle started during pregnancy really)– he has food allergies and dander allergies, and me I developed a severe allergic disease when living with my now ex– my ex his father knew about my worsening allergies and subsequent development of severe asthma when we lived together (medications at first made the allergies appear mild but after I becane pregnant all symptoms got worse and asthma developed and that was the start of me developing a severe chronuc allergic disease). I was pregnant at the start of the severe symptoms and going to the ER for asthma attacks triggered by the animals and having to get steroid shots. I was working fulltime and paying the bills. My doctor told me I shouldnt live with the pets, at that time my reactions had grown so severe and nothing was working to lessen them– and when I told my ex about it he told me then we needed to leave then (I had just given birth). He also said he doesnt even like his pets that much but didnt like feeling I was telling him what to do. I said we cannot live like this with the pets.

    I moved in with my parents and he brought bags of clothes over that  I told him I didnt want or need because they were covered in dander, and he wouldnt listen and shoved them into the baby and I's small room at my parents house. My dad had to take me to the ER that night I couldnt breathe I didnt think I'd make it there. Turns out I actually had a heart attack from allergic eosinophils surrounding my heart and choking it off and was diagnosed with a severe chronic allergic disease called Churg-Strauss Syndrome in which allergic triggers make it worse. I was in the hospital 2 weeks nearly died abd had high courses of prednisone and cytoxan (a chemo med) to get the inflammation under control.  My parents cared for my son, the father was still not convinced or didnt care about allergies and didnt ever help in any way, he came to the hospital once and even then with the doctors telling him about the allergic disease he would not find hones fir the animals. Well that was for him doing that to me. But, then it was happening for my son and that was just unacceptable. My son showed signs of severe dander allergies at a young age, and my ex wasnt present much at first– he only started pushing for timeshares once he started dating someone new. He wouldn't listen about my sons allergies, even after I had my son tested for food and dander both positive and gave him results and had the doctor send him letters directly too. He still pushed through the courts and lawyers to let him do timeshares in his home with the dogs and cats. He also was not following any of the treatment plans for his food allergies about checking ingredients at restaurants or carrying his medications properly. He would say the same things your ex did about how I was making allergies to be bigger than they were. My son cone hone with hives at age 2 after being in his fathers car. He woyld feed my son stuff from a restaurant that used soybean oil whuch he needed ti avoid as he had recations to soy in oadt then refused to give him benadryl until I about called the police when ge was on his way ti bringing him back home. .  It was so stressful. Thankfully my parents lent me money because I had tried the discounted legal resources for poor people as I had lost my job after the heart attack and was supporting my son on my own on disability income– the free lawyer was not good. Trues to cookie cutter everything into 50-50. I had the dictors stuff with me. I was able to get a better lawyer. I didnt even care about child support bc i was afraid he would retaliate and hurt my vulnerable son and/ or I. His actions and words were all over the place not matching up, it was odd and scary. We fought for over 5 years through courts, I had hired a lawyer AND a guarduan ad litem so they could get my son and Is records to the judge it took so long and sucked money from us. Finally my ex stopped fighting after the reports came back that our illnesses were real and that I always notified him of Drs appts and he never showed up to them nor did he go to scheduled timeshares, and when he agreed to drop it all (probably fir financial reasons) I said fine too, so I dont have that much protection now, nor documents giving his father anything– but his father hasnt tried anything weird. My son stays with me fulltime– he always has–  his father stopped pushing when his ex broke up with him.

    The courts need to do a better job. It cost a lot of money just to do what I did and it isnt even a full resolution but his father only stops by occasionally now and its at our house or a park where my son is comfortable and I am present. 

    It is a nightmare having to live with that fear of exactly what happened in your situation to happen to us or anyone else. I just want to give you a big hig and cry with you, I am devastated with you and angry with you. It shouldnt have happened. The judge should have seen you were the one taking the child to the doctor and seen what the diagnosis was and the doctors and your trestment plan and the father should not have been able to have tineshares before he was going to the doctor you had been going to and following the treatment plans and keeping your son safe. Instead they supported his negligence. And took away your power when you were the one who borthed this child and cared for him the right way. And that is just unacceptable. 

  • Melissa G

    Angela, I am so very sorry for the loss of your son. ! Your story is absolutely heartbreaking. I am in awe of your strength and ambition of wanting to help others. 

  • Angela Randle-Ringo

    Shea,

    Thank you so much for sharing your story, the legal system needs work. It is awful to lose a child to something that could have worked. It was anger and selfishness, that played a part in some of this. My child passed behind it. Yes, I will stand up and tall with head held high for my son.  Shea,even though you though a huge frustration with the court and your ex, and his means to chose harmful factors, instead of going by what was happening to you and your child. You held a great strength though. I commend you for that. I am going to try my best to change some of this, and be a voice for John.

  • Shea

    Angela, 

    I highly respect your attitude and what you are doing. I will be here to help and support in any way I can. 

    Bless you, 

    Shea

  • Shea

    I am not sure what I can do to help, but–even though it was expensive and took a long time– I think Guardian Ad Litems in custody cases can help get medical info to the courts and sometimes at less cost than trying to get supenoes and expert witness testimony. 

    I think the courts are looking for volunteers to be Guardian Ad Litems, so that they can help lower income families. I am not sure the qualifications or everything that goes into it– but it might be a place to start when looking to help others, becoming one, or helping others to find them.

    I hated the legal process, I did, but my lawyer did get us to a Guardian Ad Litem and did keep us working on the issue and communicating– a dysfunctional way i wish his father would have just communicated with me and our son's doctor and been on our side working with us– instead of further draining us. I couldnt have done it without my parents financial help. And many adults don't have that. It isnt fair and if I wasnt disabled myself, I would try to help those people in work or donating.