l-lrs. 1\1bitcombecameknownto CCBon referral by Marion County Juvenile
Court, March 9, 1942. The referral 118S madeby Miss Daniels, Juvenile
Court.worker, "Whostated that Sharon AnnPefiey, born 10-24-41, had been
abandonedby the parents in the homeof Mrs. Paris. The child's mother
was Catholic and the Paris family protestant. On 4-7-42 Sharon was made
a ward of the Juvenile Court, was pennitted to remain in the Paris home,
with supervision vested both in Marion County DPW and CCB. The original
plan had been to place this child in a foster homeunder CCB. Actually
Mrs. \1. herself did not seek our help and was apparently content to remain
the irresponsible mother she was and to leave her child where she was
1dthout planning for her at all. Apparently the time factor involved
had to do with the Paris' interest in adopting the baby. The client does
not seem to display any sort. of feeling in connection nth the agency
and its planning. She seems to use the agency for a crutch and support
for "Whenshe decides to change and re-enter her children' 8 lives.
STA~~NT OF PROBLSa-1S:
There had been no previous CCBcontacts, nor any contacts with other
agencies. Mrs. \-.lhitcombhas had somecontact with AA. Problems resulting
trom this mother's inability to race life and its responsibilities were
alcoholism, promiscuity and periodically disappearing tor a matter ot
weeks or months at a time. She has never bem able to care for her children
Mrs. \1. displays deep-rooted insecurity in her actions and a need to
run away from lite whena problem arises that she cannot handle or lIhen she
has settled into somesort of eve'r1"day "sameness.u Although she awars
to change this does not last tor any length of time.
Dorothy Stanley Souder Petley Ely \?bitcombwas hom 2-23-22 in Detroit,
Michigan. She lias born out of l16dlock. Patemity was never established.
She is the oldest f:n a fraternity of three younger half-siblings. The
mother, Helen, was one in a fratemity of six wo was placed in a State
institution in England at the age of six and remained in institutions
until the age of fifteen when she lett to seek employurent. Sils did not
have any contact l1ith her siblings from the age of six until she left the
institution and cameto live with a maternal uncle, John, in 1921.
Another maternal uncle, James, joined them in rIindsor in 1922 at l1hich time
the mother rell in love with him and subsequently these tlfO established a
homeand lived together as manand ldfe ever since. The client Is three
half-brothers are the issue of this mion. 'Ibis relationship caused the
mother and James considerable feeling of guilt. This situation ws nover
madeknOlm. to the children. They had considered breaking off their relationship.
ntey tiere unable to do so. James, l'JhomDorothy referred to
as the father, 'fas described as superior to the mother, very reserved, ill
at ea~ lfhen being interviewed. He lfaS a shoemakerand has worked in this
country as a laborer in factorios. His lrork record 11&.8 st1tisfactory nth
the exception of prolonger lay-offs due to industrial depression. James
vas alcoholic and the mother had also been alcoholic periodically. The
family movedfrequently, Ii v1ng for the most part in undesirable neighborhoods
due to their low economie status. Housekeeping standards were poor.
14rs. W's half brother, James, had never presented any difficulty. Joseph
and John, twins, were school problems because of irregular attendance and
were knownto the court in Detroit for larceny since 1935. Theywere made
wards of the court in August 1938 and committed to St. Vincent de Paul Society
~f~owr abso.0alrLdbinteg. care. Mir.srr. \'1. did not makea satisfactory adjustment in school ep'l1Mrn ~ " _
AStanford Binet Scale, FonD.L, was administered to Mrs.Whitcomb (Cheranes mothher) 'When she was
sixteen years and nine months old. She proved to have a mental age of 14
years and 11 months, and an I.Q. of 99. She proved to be a better verbalist
and had rather poor manual dexterity. visual memoryand reasoning ability
with concrete material. She was never interested in school, lifanted to be
a beauty operator or waitress. She had delinite feelings ot paternal rejection
and conflict because of his alcoholism. Her relationship was not
entirely satisfactory to her as the mother apparently depended upon 14rs. W.
to a great extent and confided her "lorrie s to her. This information 1185
given to CCBby the Convent of the GoodShepherd in Detroit which Mrs. \oJ.
entered 12-28-)8 and lett 9-17-40. OnOctober 2, 1939 she attempted to run
awaybut 'l:I8.S returned by the police. While in this institutional placement
she spoke of her sex experience quite treely. Someof it, especially at first,
apparently was motivated by the desire to keep the friendship of a boy. She
is antagonistic towards any type of discipline. The dynamics for her alcoholic
habit seems to be an adoption of the same from the parents. It was advised
that because of her personality makeup her definite psychoneurotic tendencies
at the time of this case becomingknOl1llto eCB lIere few.
f.1rs. W. ran away from her aunt and uncle l1hotook her after she lett the
institution. At about eighteeen she cameto Indianapolis and met L,nn Petley
and lias married by a Justice of the Peace. She claimed at that time that
she did not realize the enormouswrong she had committed by not getting married
in the church and has always verbalized a deep love and concern for her children.
Other than bearing them gifts and visiting them in foster homesand telling
them of the day bnen they \ull be homewith her her love is absolutely
Mrs. rIo has been married numeroustimes and has had attairs with other men
between marriages. She married Lynn Pefley on 6-17-41 and divorced him on
7-1-42. Sharon AnnPeney l1as born of the marriage on 10-24-41. She married
HomerSouder on the date of her divorce from Petley and divorced him on 3-12-45.
Kathleen l1as born to this pair on 12-27-42. Mr. Souder died on 10-13-48. J.1rs.
W. married Kenneth Eli on 9-30-45 and was divorced sometime in Januarr 1950.
l-lichael, bom 4-11-48, Charlene, born 3-20-50, and Joseph. bom 7-24-51, \1ere
trom this marriage. Joseph lias placed tor adoption in Detroit in 1991. Mrs.'1Z. w. remarried I.1r. Perley on March 5, 1952 in Indianapolis. It was thought
that this was a bigamous marriage on Mrs. Ii's part. Lynetta Peney, bom
10-17-53, is the child of this marriage. Although Steven Petley, bom 4-6-56,
bears this man's last name, and the legal responsibility is Mr. Perley's,
he is, by l1rs. \"1' 8 Olm admission the child at Thomast!hiteomb 1"Jhomshe married
in July ot 1956. Noneof these marriages l1ere validated in the eyes of the
church. In each situation muchinsecurity was present. The menwre often
unemployed, beat Mrs. W., and in financial straits. Living conditions were
never good and the family moved.frequently, a1'tmysto very dingy and low-standard
surroundings. The marriages trequently ended in frequent quarrelling and
drinldng while the children had no or little supervision. Mrs Whitcomb 1"1. can never
seem to stay put in a certain situation and has an unusual ability to choose
equally unsta.ble and incompetent Il1el1. Mrs. W. is presently divorced from Mr.
lihitcomb and associating with a manby the n8J1'.eof Art Price. She has been
associating with this man since 1957. 14r. '"I. obtained her divorce in 1960.