04 3 02210 1 Veronica Freitas Beth Humphrey Parenting Evaluation 2005

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Douglas C. Dich arry, M.D. Interlake Board Certified in Child, Adolescent & Adult Psychiatry Psychiatric Elizabeth J. W asson, Ph.D. Child & Adult Clinical…
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Douglas C. Dich arry, M.D. Interlake Board Certified in Child, Adolescent & Adult Psychiatry Psychiatric Elizabeth J. W asson, Ph.D. Child & Adult Clinical Psychology Michael P. Golden, M.D. Board Certified in Pediatrics, Associafes 1 Pediatric Endocrinology, Child & Delton W. Young, Ph.D. · Adolescent Psychiatry PLLC Clinical & Forensic Psychology PARENTING EVALUATION Father: Greg Sifferman (petitioner) DOB: 6/18/62 (42 years) Mother: Beth Sifferman (respondent) DOB: 7/8/63 (41) Child 1: Lauren Sifferman DOB: 10/12/94 (10) Child 2: Zachary Sifferman DOB: 5/24/99 (5) Child 3: Annalisa Sifferman DOB: 11/11/01 (3) Report Date: February 14, 2005 Assessed by: Delton W. Young, Ph.D. Cause No: 04-3-02210-1 Petitioner's Counsel: Respondent's Counsel: Ms. Gail Nunn Mr. Paul Reni 1110 N. 175th St., Suite 202 O'Loane, Nunn & Guthrie, PLLC Reni & Banks, PS 2707 Colby Ave., Suite 1204 Everett, Washington 98206 Shoreline, Washington 98133 (425) 258-6860 (206} 542-1840 I. Background and Evaluation Purpose Greg Sifferman and Beth Sifferman were married in April of 1989 in Seattle. On August 11, 2004 while the mother was at in-patient alcohol treatment, the father petitioned for legal separation; and they were separated on September 10th. Pursuant to Temporary Orders, the mother moved out of the home on that date. On September 30th , Temporary Orders issued by Commissioner Bedle directed that the mother would move back into the home and that the children would reside primarily with the mother. Since that time, the father has resided with his sister in Edmonds, and separation, on October 181\ the mother petitioned for dissolution of the marriage. the mother and three children have resided in the family home in Bothell. Subsequent to the legal This was the first marriage for each of the parties. Three children have issued from the marriage: Lauren (10), Zachary (5} and Annalisa (3). Neither party has any other children. Lauren is in good health and currently attends Maywood Hills Elementary School where she is in the fourth grade. She has been on an IEP for special assistance with speech articulation. Zachary is currently in half-day kindergarten at Maywood Hills where he is doing well. He has a congenital spinal abnormality that precludes contact sports. Annalisa is at home and has not yet begun preschool. Lauren and Zachary are currently in individual counseling with Ms. Cathy Dallman for the past several months. Each of the parents believes that it would be in the best interests of the children to reside primarily with him/her. While there has been considerable animosity between the parents, they do not report severe conflict between the two of them as regards the normal execution of daily parenting duties and transitions. 2025 112th Avenue NE, Suite 200, Bellevue,WA 98004-2943 (425) 462-951 l Fax (425) 462-8894 Parenting Evaluation Sifferman v. Sifferman February 14, 2005 Page 2 Background/Evaluation Purpose, cont. In su·pplementary Tem� Jrders on October 81\ this examiner was directed by Commissioner Bedle to conduct a parenting evaluation. Each of the parties was informed that all information gathered through interviews, records, collateral sources and testing would be used for the examiner's report . It was explained that none of the information gathered would be confidential and that the examiner's observations, impressions, conclusions and recommendations would be forwarded in a report to each of the party's counsel. The parties understood also that they had the right to refuse to answer any questions they wished. They expressed that they understood this warning and agreed to proceed with the evaluation with those understandings. During the interviews, it became clear that the evaluation needed to be expanded to include the mother's new intimate partner, Veronica Freitas. Very soon after the mother returned home, she had Ms. Freitas in the home with her and the children almost every day and night. Hence, because Ms. Freitas was now a regular part of the children's lives, she had to be included and evaluated. She and Ms. Sifferman were cooperative with this. II. Sources of Information Documents Reviewed Supplementary Temporary Orders regarding finances 10/6/04 Temporary Orders 9/30/04 Parenting Plan Temporary Order 9/30/04 Parenting History Questionnaire completed by each party Gregory Sifferman's diary of day-to-day parenting functions Beth Sifferman's diary of day-to-day parenting functions CPS logs and reports regarding 10/22/03 and 6/2/04 Copy of a note from Lauren about her mother Letter to whom it may concern from Theresa Sifferman Green Attendance summary from school for Lauren 10/04 -1/05 Anger Management class certificate regarding Greg Sifferman 8/14/04 Northshore School District enrollment form regarding Zachary Residence XII transition summary regarding Beth Sifferman: 8/22/04 Addiction Severity Index; Psychiatric status Assessment of withdrawal potential and detoxification needs Northshore School District evaluation and IEP records regarding Lauren: Evaluation summary;Notices of action; Referral for special education Initial evaluation; WJ-R results; ITBS results; Other records Reply Declaration of Greg Sifferman 9/21/04 DSHS/DCFS letter to Greg Sifferman regarding 10/24/03 incident Photographs of Greg Sifferman and children Parenting Plan, Proposed 8/11/04 Ex Parte Restraining Order/order to show cause 9/10/04 Supplemental Declaration of Petitioner 9/9/04 Declaration of Service Motion/Declaration for Ex Parte Restraining Order 8/11 09-09-18 11:38AM (952) 985-7218 T-95 p.001/033 F-07 Parenting Evaluation Sifferman v. Sifferman February 14, 2005 Page 3 Sources of Information, con !. Response to Petitioner .,al Separation, Pet for Dissolution 10/18 Petition for Legal Separation 8/11/04 Declaration of Brian Nelson 9/20 Declaration of Debbie Speck 9/20 Declaration of Janice Palm, LMHC 9/20February 2, 2005 Declaration of Greg Sifferman regarding finances Declaration of Mary Lee Briffett 9/19 Declaration of Don Charles Costa 9/19 Declaration of Theresa Sifferman Green 9/19 Declaration of Jeffrey Hartlove 9/20/04 Declaration of David Sifferman Declaration of Christina Alice Lupastean 9/16/04 Declaration of Adrianna Lupastean 9/16/04 Respondent declaration in response to petitioner's motion for temporary orders 9/16/04 Medical records regarding Beth Sifferman from Swedish Medical Center DSHS safety plan 10/03 Declaration of Veronica Freitas 9/16/04 Declaration of Theresa Harris Declaration of Julia Langer Proposed Parenting Plan 9/16/04 Counter Motion for anger management evaluation 9/6/04 Temporary Order, proposed Addendums to parent history questionnaire by the father (4) lnterviews/Tests Individual interviews with Mr. Sifferman 12/9, 12/16 Individual interviews with Ms. Sifferman 12/14, 16/04, 1/18 Individual interview with Veronica Freitas 1/13 Interviews with Lauren and Zachary (with mother) 1/18 Interviews with Lauren and Zachary (with father) 1/20 Dr. Doren Raphae/y by telephone 1/27 Ms. Theresa Sifferman Green by telephone 1/24 Ms. Deb Dettman by telephone 1/24/05 Ms. Alice Lupastean by telephone 1/25/05 Ms. Patricia Thompson by telephone 1/24/05 Ms. Janice Palm, LMHC by telephone 2/2 Ms. Kathy Dallman by telephone 1/25/05 Dr. David Hall, by telephone 2/7/05 Telephone call to father 1/20/05 Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory, second edition (MMPl-2): Mr. Sifferman 12/9/04; Ms. Sifferman 12/16/04 Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory, third edition (MCMl-111): Mr. Sifferman 12/16/04; Ms. Sifferman 1/18/05 MMPl-2 and MCMl-111 with Ms. Freitas 1/13/05 Child Behavior Checklist (Achenbach) completed by both parties and teachers regarding Lauren Parenting Evaluation Sifferman v. Sifferman February 14, 2005 Page 3 Ill. Perceptions and Allegations Mr. Sifferman has related numerous concerns and allegations about the mother's behavior, judgment, and capacity for sound parenting. Most of these concerns relate to the mother's history of mental health difficulties and alcohol abuse. He noted that the mother h�s been treated for substantial periods of time for depression and eating disorder including anorexia and bulimia. He reported that she has engaged in suicide attempts and threats, and that she has engaged in self­ mutilation (i.e., cutting) as recently as last summer. He reported that she has suffered from alcoholism, especially in recent years, and that this has impaired her judgment significantly. He reported, for example, that when she had a severe single-vehicle car accident on 1-5 in September of 2003, this was due to her abuse of alcohol in combination with psychiatric medications. He alleges that the mother has been neglectful in the care of the children, and he believes that her depression renders her unable to function adequately. For example, he asserts that she is, "unable to get out of bed in the morning, feed our children, and get our daughter off to school on time." He also believes that her eating disorder interferes with her capacity to provide regular and nutritious meals for the children. He reports that Beth was treated on an inpatient basis for alcohol dependency last summer, first for detoxification at Swedish/Ballard for three days, then for 27 days of inpatient treatment at Residence XII from July 26 to August 22. Mr. Sifferman also reports that his wife has shown very poor judgment as regards the children since her discharge from inpatient treatment. He reports that very soon after she moved back into the home with the children, she moved her new intimate partner into the home with her and the children. This new relationship, Veronica Freitas, is a woman Beth met when they were both in inpatient treatment at Residence XII during the summer. Mr. Sifferman believes that it was inappropriate to move a new intimate partner into the home at that point in time. He has been alarmed to hear from his children that they have witnessed Beth and Veronica in bed together, including without any clothes on, and that the mother now locks her bedroom door at night and is inaccessible to the children. Ms. Sifferman's concerns and allegations about her husband center upon his being verbally and emotionally abusive, controlling, and even physically abusive at times. She describes in a variety of ways that he has been controlling and coercive with her and the children for several years. She believes that this has been harmful to her and to the children. She reports that he has very poor anger control and he flies off the handle very quickly. She reports that he was arrested once in 2000 for domestic violence upon her. She also reports another incident that was investigated by CPS involving the father's slapping Zachary on the face and leaving welts. She states that "Greg is rough in his discipline and he is always super angry, and calls the children names." She stated, also, "He physically abuses Lauren and Zachary, yells, and is angry at Annalisa." She believes that her husband does not have the skills or the temperament to adequately parent the children. She also reports, in response to his allegations of her alcohol abuse, that he also in the past abused alcohol as well as marijuana. IV. Evaluation of Greg Sifferman Mr. Sifferman works full time as a mortgage loan officer at Golf Savings Bank. He has held that position for eight years; and he plans to stay in that role for the foreseeable future. He currently works about 40-50 hours per week. He currently is in individual counseling with Ms. Janice Palm, LMHC. Previously he saw Dr. David Hall. He takes no medications on a regular basis. Parenting Evaluation .;ifferman v. sifferman February 14, 2005 Page 5 Evaluation of Greg Sifferman, cont. healthy child who reached developmental milestones normally. He was 10th out of 11 children in Mr. Sifferman related the following developmental history. He was born in Seattle and he was a his family that lived on Capital Hill. His parents were together and married when he was a child. In fact, he states that they are still married, after 62 years. He states that he had a positive and healthy relationship with his parents when growing up. His father was in sales, machinery, and fishing, and his mother was at home with the children. Mr. Sifferman reports that he attended Stevens Elementary School where he did well, both academically and socially. He attended St. Josephs School from grades 1 through 8 on Capital Hill. This is a Catholic School and corresponds with the family's religious affiliation. He had no learning difficulties, but he did acknowledge having some minor behavioral difficulties in his early elementary years. He stated that there was no particularly harsh discipline at home. He stated that he managed to maintain positive relationships with his parents over the years, "and we attended mass every Sunday." During his junior high school years, he continued to do well academically, socially and athletically. There was no behavior trouble, and he stated "I was on the straight and narrow." He attended the ninth grade at O'Dea High School where he did reasonably well academically. However, there was some behavior trouble and he was suspended on two occasions. He transferred to Blanchet High School for grades 10, 11 and 12. He enjoyed that school better because he was more involved in sports and he had a girlfriend there. He continued to do well and graduated from Blanchet in 1980. He also participated in cross-country, track and baseball. Following graduation, he lived with his parents for a year and visited in Europe with his brothers who worked at ski shows and outdoor-oriented businesses. At the age of 19, he began at Washington State University where he attended for the next 4-1/2 years. His major was pre-law, history, and economics. He was interested in law at that point in time. He graduated from WSU with honors and a partial scholarship in 1985. He then went on to Pepperdine Law School where he had a friend. However, he reported that he began to experience doubts about whether he wanted to be an attorney and decided to leave law school after about one year. He then worked in Seattle at a variety of jobs. Greg met his future wife, Beth, in 1983 via friends in Seattle. She attended Western Washington University that year, and she subsequently transferred to WSU to be near him. They dated through the last two years of college. He reported that he found her attractive and they had a very positive relationship at that time. He noted that she "needed reassurance, needed to be constantly reassured that I would say that she's beautiful.n He stated that he was unsure about proceeding with marriage, but that she wanted to proceed toward marriage, and in September of 1988 they did decide to marry. They were subsequently married on April 8, 1989 at St. Josephs Church in Seattle. In the year prior to their marriage, Beth told Greg about her sometimes serious depression and severe eating disorder. He reported that he met with her and her psychiatrist at WSU at one point. He stated that her mental health issues "scared me some." After they were married, Greg took a job working with one of his brothers and Beth began teaching, first as a teaching intern and then as a teacher. They bought two homes during the next two years while Greg was learning the business of finance. He took training and became a mortgage loan officer after learning the trade at North Seattle Community College in a class there. He got a good job as a loan officer in October of 1993, and he has been in that general field since that time. The couple's first child, Lauren, was born in October, 1994. He reports that Beth had severe post­ partum depression following that childbirth, and subsequently the anorexia returned in full force. He states that she began drinking heavily. He reports that from 1996 to 1999 Beth talked about and/or threatened suicide on several occasions either by overdosing or by cutting her wrist. He Parenting Evaluation Sifferman v. Sifferman February 14, 2005 Page 6 Evaluation of Greg Sifferman. cont. report 1t their second child, Zachary, was born in May of 1999. He claims that Beth drank alcohL JUgh the entire pregnancy, though her report is that she drank some, but not nearly so much. He reported that Zachary was born with a congenital defect in his spinal column and his neck. He questioned whether Beth's drinking during pregnancy might have been the cause of this defect. Apparently, this is a serious condition and he may have to have more vertebrae fused in order to prevent catastrophic injury. Mr. Sifferman reports that it is undetermined whether her drinking alcohol was the cause of this defect. (She reports that the doctor stated that it would have no relation). Mr. Sifferman reports that in September of 1999 he attended a meeting with Beth and her psychiatrist, Dr. Raphaely, to inform him of her alcohol use and the fact that she was drinking in conjunction with various psychiatric medications. There was significant conflict on and off during these years, and he reports that when Beth became drunk, she frequently became belligerent and out of control, and she would provoke physical altercations. In August of 2000, he was arrested for domestic violence and spent the weekend in jail. He was not prosecuted. He attributed that incident to Beth's intoxication and belligerent behavior. The third child, Annalisa, was born in November, 2001. He reports that Beth again drank through the entire pregnancy, and she was on bed rest the final three months. He reported that several times in recent years her drunkenness became public; for example, at company functions, such as Christmas parties or a Palm Desert company party in California. He expressed concern that she would drink heavily, especially after Zachary's birth, and that she was using benzodiazepines and other psychiatric medications simultaneously. He does not believe that he has been unduly harsh or controlling. Instead, he states that his anger and frustration stem from Beth's abuse of alcohol and her dyscontroJ. Mr. Sifferman reports that on September 25, 2003, Beth was driving on 1-5 after having been drinking alcohol in conjunction with medications. She lost control of the car and totaled it. Neither she nor anyone else was injured. She refused a breathalyzer at the scene of the accident. However, she was not sanctioned or prosecuted for DUI. He stated that she was not cited or prosecuted for DUI because of a technicality (confirmed by Beth's mother). Following this accident, in October of 2003, and at his insistence Beth did her first intake interview at Residence XII. He reports that they determined she was alcoholic and needed treatment. She refused treatment at that time (corroborated by records). Mr. Sifferman reports that in October of 2003, he was investigated by CPS for possible physical abuse of Zachary. He reports that Annalisa had fallen down the stairs, and that when he came upon the scene, his immediate reaction was that Zachary had perhaps pushed her down the stairs and he slapped Zachary across the face, leaving welts on the child's face according to CPS. Subsequently, Lauren described this incident to staff members at school who, in turn, called CPS. Lauren reported to the CPS investigator that both she and Zachary were afraid of their father. During their investigation, Lauren also told them that their father was constantly verbally abusing them and making threats with a raised fist. They stated that Lauren reported that he used to hit her, but he does not do so anymore. They reported that she also stated that "there are lots of DV incidents" between the parents. She also reported that about three weeks previously, the father alleged
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