Mother: Susan Mailer

Mother-Susan Mailer


Setting: Phone call (After repeated messages and voicemails not returned, you call from a different phone number and happen to catch Susan picking up the phone.)


Who are you? What exactly is your role?

How is that different from that social worker?

Look, I’ll tell you the same thing, since you seem to be asking the same questions as everyone else. I love my child. My family has always taken good care of Lavender. Nothing bad has ever happened to my child and nothing ever will. My family won’t make the same mistake with her they did with me—trusting the wrong people.


Yes, I work at a bar. What’s it to you? Yes, Lavender sometimes came to work with me. She’d do homework while I worked. I don’t have the money to pay a babysitter.


Yeah, I do like to party from time to time. And if someone offers me something, I smoke it. Lots of people do the same thing. Are you gonna take their kids, too? Sometimes I need to escape. This is stressful. Life has been stressful. I have bad memories from my own childhood, stuff that happened when I was away from home. What stuff? That’s personal. Don’t ask.


No, I don’t spend my money on drugs. I told you, I don’t do that. If someone offers me something, maybe I’ll do that stuff socially. But it’s not like I’m a druggie.


If our house is so dangerous for a child, why don’t they take my sister’s kids too? This is just a bunch of bull crap! No wonder we don’t trust the government. Why they always gotta steal our children?


  • How about Susan’s final point? Why doesn’t DCP&P remove Leah’s children from the home? Should they?
  • Do you believe what Susan said about not buying drugs?
  • What are your follow-up questions?