Being There When It’s Hard

Foster and adoptive dad Shelly shares a story about a very difficult time with one of his children.

“My name is Shelley Tucker. I have a family of four; three adopted and one foster son.

“My 19-year-old get arrested. He was 17 years old, his first time, and he got arrested for marijuana. I had him go to a drug treatment program and I went with him.

“Even though I’m in the health care field, and been there for the last 30 years, he didn’t want to listen to me. He wanted to listen to somebody who had some experience with that. That was fine and dandy with me. So, shortly after that, he got into some more trouble when he turned 18 for armed robbery. That was very hurtful to me because I don’t come from a family that has any criminal activity. However, his family has a history of criminal activities. So I had to learn to be accepting of that and try to teach him the right way.

“A lot of teenagers are faced with criminal activities. And I wanted him to know that he did have a chance to turn this thing around. And so, for every court appearance that he had, I was there with him.

“However, there was one court appearance that I couldn’t make it because I was in finals. I was trying to get my degree, and I told him I couldn’t go. I was kind of fed up with the situation. I was like, ‘I’m not used to the court system, I don’t want to be a part of this, this is not something that I like.’

“But you know, God spoke to me and told me to get up from my class and go across there and check on your son. This is your son. He might not be a biological son, but that’s my son and I had to go check on him. I went to court and the judge dropped the charges and gave him three years’ probation. And the judge looked to him and said, ‘The only reason why I’m dropping these charges is because your dad is here. Had your dad not been here you’d’ve been facing six years.’

“When I showed up in court with my oldest son he was talking to the judge and he was telling the judge what his biological dad told him. And the judge said to him, looked him dead in the eye, and looked at me and said, ‘This is your dad here. He’s been with you for every trial, every court date. And every meeting that you had with your lawyer.’

“And my son looked at the judge and said, ‘You know you’re right, Your Honor. That’s true.’

“So it meant a lot to me to hear him say that acknowledge me as being a great influence in his life and being a support system for him.”




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