Published May 13, 2011
A North Carolina mother battling Stage 4 breast cancer has another intense fight on her hands right now – this time over her two children.
On April 25, Alaina Giordano lost custody of her 11-year-old daughter and 5-year-old son after a Durham, N.C., judge ruled that the children would need to relocate to the Chicago-area to live with their dad, ABC11 Eyewitness News, who first broke the story, reported.
According to ABCNews.com, the judge made the decision based on the fact that Giordano’s ex-husband was able to find a job and a house in a good school district, while she lives in North Carolina, jobless and facing cancer treatments.
Judge Nancy E. Gordon noted, “the course of her disease is unknown,” and that “children who have a parent with cancer need more contact with the non-ill parent.”
But according to one family attorney, who spoke to ABC11, this ruling is about much more than just cancer. Raleigh attorney Charles Ullman reviewed the 27-page order, and said the judge has many other concerns besides the health of Giordano.
"That she might expose the children to some type of risk, security risk, health risk, not provide for them," Ullman said.
The truth is, Giordano and her ex-husband, Kane Snyder, have both had their issues.
Both of them spent a night in jail after getting into an altercation, according to ABC11, and Giordano also confessed to having “an adulterous relationship, spending days out of state with a married man while her children were with their grandparents.”
In response to all of this, Giordano has started a blog, a Facebook page and an online petition, which more than 50,000 people already have signed.
On her blog, Giordano said her husband has made her cancer a "key issue" in the custody battle, but even though her cancer has metastasized, she said she has kept it in check with regular treatments.
If Giordano moves to Chicago, she could get joint custody, but she said that would not be an easy move.
"It really would be dangerous for me to move away from my support system and my medical team," she told ABC11.
Giordano, who is currently trying to raise money for a lawyer, is expected to hand over her children by June 15.