A few months ago, we wrote about Abbie Dorn, a 34-year-old mother who was severely disabled during the birth of her triplets four years ago. After a series of medical errors left her deprived of oxygen during the birth of daughter Esti and sons Yossi and Reuvi, Abbie was left severely brain damaged. Now she is unable to move or speak, and communicates solely by blinking.

Following the birth and Abbie's injuries, she went to live with her parents in North Carolina while her husband Dan, who divorced her soon after the children were born, remained in California with Esti, Yossi and Reuvi. Abbie has had very minimal contact with her children since their birth. Several months ago, Abbie's parents, who are her conservators, filed a child custody suit, asking the court to grant Abbie visitation time with the children.

Dan opposed Abbie's request for visitation, stating that his ex-wife's "vegetative state" rendered her unable to communicate with the children or even realize that they were with her. Further, he said, seeing their disabled mother would not help the children in any way, but it could actually harm them.

California Judge Frederick C. Shaller disagreed. In a recent ruling, the judge awarded visitation to Abbie, which will consist of one five-day visit each year, plus one monthly online video chat. In his ruling, Judge Shaller stated that Dan had not presented sufficient evidence of the potential negative effect of the visit on the children. "Although there is no compelling evidence that the visitations by the children will have any benefit to Abbie," Judge Shaller wrote, "there is no compelling evidence that visitation with Abbie will be detrimental to the children."

Source: Los Angeles Times, "Severely disabled mother wins visitation rights with triplets", Maria L. La Ganga, 25 March 2011