When is the devil you don’t know better than the devil you do know?
I am often left feeling as though I am choosing between the lesser of two evils. Rather than just being able to make the best decision for example; I have a couple choices and neither of them are fantastic, but I have to choose one of them. So take your pick…
We have an election going on (yeah I know, the entire world knows). But we also have a Probate Judge election going on here in Waldo County. You see, while there is some family court stuff brewing upstairs with my grand-daughter Lanah, I also have lots of things circulating downstairs in Probate. Everything from the Guardianship of my daughter to the petition of guardianship of my grand-daughter.
I actually petitioned for guardianship of my grand-daughter back in June. At that time we didn’t know who her father was so there was the added delay of informing all the putative fathers. But even since finding out there has been a great delay in getting the case heard.
I originally petitioned the probate court because I was the one caring for Lanah full time. My daughter had moved in with her boyfriend and would come and visit with Lanah and spend time with her but she wasn’t ready to be a full time parent. At that time and in moment’s of clarity she would acknowledge this. The concern arose when my daughter wasn’t in a good frame of mind and did not have the clarity to realize she wasn’t making a good decision.
Was I concerned she would intentionally hurt Lanah? No. But was I concerned she didn’t have
enough insight and understanding of what Lanah’s needs were? Yes. I was also concerned about the people she may have let Lanah in contact with. My daughter can be very naive and even though I know she would protect Lanah from anyone trying to hurt her outright; it was the more cunning in nature I was concerned about.
So, we have two people running for re-election. The first was a probate judge a long time ago. Back when my daughter was a child. I had had him as an attorney when we petitioned the court on behalf my step-daughter back in the mid 90’s. I liked him okay then, but I do remember switching attorney’s because we did not think he was being proactive enough. That’s Randolph Mailloux.
Then there’s the current probate judge who’s running for re-election (she’s gone uncontested for 8 years). Now up until I had to go to probate court I had never even heard of her. The first time around when I petitioned for guardianship of my daughter it was pretty smooth sailing. Well, since then it’s been pretty awful. I’m not really sure she knows what it means to be really, really poor. I have asked for my fees to be waived and we always make a payment arrangement. Whenever I’ve been asked what I can pay, it always ends up being more than I stated. We get stuck on this payment arrangement issue and even when I have been in there to talk about my grand-daughter I feel belittled about my inability to make the payment arrangement on time. Plus we still haven’t addressed the long standing issue of guardianship of my grand-daughter (which by the way, both parents have signed off on). That’s Susan Longley
So what do you do? I have no idea where Randolph Mailloux stands on this or what the courtroom would be like when I got in there. Does he listen more? Not interupt as much and try to understand the individual family?
Or am I better off with Susan Longley who knows the case better. She has some compassion (I believe) for the ongoing circumstances. Seems to honestly want to understand.
I know it’s not just up to me to decide anyway. Mostly I just want some resolution. I feel like everyone is just dragging their feet. Each one waiting for the other to make a decision. They’re all standing in a circle and everyone points to their left. Meanwhile Lanah will turn six months old on the 21st of this month. Now she’s been in foster care longer than she’s not been in foster care.
So what’s worse? The Devil you do know or the Devil you don’t know?