Don’t ask if your child can speak to the judge. Your child doesn’t want to talk to your judge and your judge doesn’t want to have to talk to your child. Don’t put your kid in a situation like that. You’re only job as a parent is to protect your child from situations just like that.
It’s hard, I know. I’m being a bit glib.
Your little one comes back crying – nearly hyperventilating – having trusted you in the comfort of your own home with something their mother or father said or did. And what really rips you off is that not only did Mom or Dad say that in front of your child but they told your child to lie to you about it. But your little angel didn’t do that. They came to you DESPITE THAT, and they trusted you enough to tell you anyway. (Thank goodness). Because that’s how you raised them.
And now your jerk lawyer won’t let you testify about it (hearsay) so you figure, well it will only be once. They will go into chambers and speak to the judge once, one afternoon, for like, fifteen minutes. My 7 y.o. told me and they will tell the judge and everything will be fine.
Except, guess what? 7 year-olds (almost) never walk into a room with a judge and a stenographer and rat out a parent. Hardly. Ever. They don’t tell the judge what they told you in your living room. They don’t repeat what they told their therapist. They don’t say what you want them to say. They say … all kinds of stuff. They’re kids. Kids in a very high-pressure situation (which you put them in).
Don’t ask your child to speak to your judge. The judge will hate you for it. Your lawyer will hate you for it. And, know this, your child will hate you for it, too. Not right away. They may not realize it right away. But trust me, in time, they will have very strong opinions on the time you made them walk into court and speak to the judge. Consciously or unconsciously they will never forget the discomfort of that day. No matter how good you think your reason is it isn’t worth it.