Hooray! Christy and Jason Vaughn, who have been making the rounds of the media hoping to drum up sympathy for their keeping the boy,
were present at his birth in October of 2007 and took him to their home in Indiana eight days later, according to news reports. However, nine days later Wyrembek, who had a brief affair with the baby's mother, registered with the Putative Father Registry in Ohio, affirming that he might be the boy's father. Wyrembek then filed a suit to establish parental rights in December 2007, just weeks before the Vaughns filed for adoption, according to court documents.
The mother of the boy was married to someone else when she became pregnant with Wyrembek's child, and they separated before the boy was born. She and her husband -- the legal father -- filed the necessary papers to surrender custody of the child within weeks of his birth. And so began this sad tale. Seventeen months later, after genetic testing confirmed Wyrembek as "Grayson's" biological father, and before the adoption could be finalized, an Ohio court ruled that the Vaughns had filed their adoption petition prematurely -- since paternity had not yet been determined -- and awarded custody to Wyrembek.
The Vaughns were crying on the tube again this morning, but Harry Smith's (of The Morning Show on CBS) first question was:
"When you barely have this child home, when the court is petitioned from the biological father to get little Grayson back, was there a part of you, at the time, that thought, 'Well, you know, maybe this is not to be, and we'll just let this child go?' Go back to his biological father?"The Vaughns did not answer that question but instead were critical of Wyrembek for not being involved with them as he fought them in the courts. They tried to get the Indiana court to assume authority in the case, but Indiana refused, saying the matter rightly belonged in Ohio. As the wheels of justice turned slowly--as the Vaughns and their lawyer stalled so time would pass--three years went by. Then the Vaughns claimed the "best interests" of the child, or possession of a hundred percent of ownership, if a child is involved. Adoption attorneys have long understood that when they’re caught trying to force adoption on a child who doesn’t need to be adopted because he has a fit father who wants him, the best thing to do is to stall. Naturally, the Vaughns have filed further motions to delay the transfer of the boy.
Nothing has made me so angry about the legal system in a long time, perhaps not since the fanatical, grasping DeBoers pulled the same kind of legal shenanigans and litigated for sympathy in the media in 1991. Ultimately, they too lost and Anna/Jessica was turned over to her natural, rightful parents, Anna and Dan Schmidt. Another case that comes to mind is that of Baby Richard, the boy who was returned to his rightful father after four years.
Glenn Sacks, national executive director of Fathers and Families, a national family court reform organization, told AOL ParentDish says he sees this type of case all too often:
"'These cases are very difficult because what usually happens is that the adoptive parents will hold onto the child as long as they can, and then by the time it winds its way to a decision, they say, 'How can we rip the kid from the only family they've ever known and give him to his biological father?'There are currently two different adoption petitions pending in Ohio, and the Vaughns are now appealing the 24-hour order to turn Grayson over to Wyrembek, asking for a transition period, and have hired a child psychologist to argue their case with the court in Ohio.
"'People say, Gee, could he really raise a kid on his own like that? But when motivated fathers have a chance to raise their kids, they're usually very effective, and the research bears that out.'"
I understand why they are asking for this, and after three years, I can understand that it sounds reasonable. But they have had three years. They should have been preparing for this day rather than living in denial. It is impossible to see that a "transition period" would be anything but more fodder for them to go to the media and claim that the boy was having a hard time and they should retain custody for the rest of his life. Of course the child does not know the man who is his real father. Yes, there will be an adjustment period. But one is forced to ask the unthinkable:
Do birth/first mothers and children go through a "transition" period when they relinquish their child to make it easier on them, and their children? I imagine there are a lot of screaming babies who wonder why this person holding them doesn't smell like their mothers, doesn't have the same familiar heartbeat of their mothers, the mother have they known as they grew in her body.
Christy and Jason Vaughn need to dry their tears and start talking to the boy they call Grayson immediately and tell him the truth as much as he can absorb. And they will need to use the word: real father. The one you will grow up to look like. The one who helped "make you." He has wanted you all along but we loved you so much that we kept you. But he loves you too. He has always loved you. He is your real father. Hard words, I know, but that would be what he needs to hear in any "transition." Given what we know about these grasping, baby thieves it's doubtful they will have the courage to say anything like that.--lorraine
Jane here:Regarding a transition time -- sounds good but may not be workable. In the "Baby Richard" case, the birth parents agreed to a transition period. They and the adoptive parents each obtained a child psychologist and the two psychologist agreed on a third. The birth parents tried to set up meetings to develop a transition plan. The adoptive parents and their psychologist held a private meeting with the neutral psychologist, dragged their feet about meeting with the birth parents, didn't show up at a scheduled meeting, and so on. After a year of this nonsense, the judge said "transfer the kid now!"
The adoptive parents set a date for the transfer and called in the media to take pictures of four year old Richard crying as they handed him to his birth parents. Once in the car Richard stopped crying and in time bonded with her father and mother. He thrived with his parents.
See earlier related posts: Biological Dad Seeks Return of His Son; Adopters Resist, Claiming: Best Interests and Justice for birthmothers is an oxymoron.