Are we currently witnessing the lowest period in Jenelle Evans' life so far? It kind of feels like it, right?
Which is pretty wild to consider, since she had that whole heroin addiction thing a few years back.
But right now, at this very moment in time, Jenelle doesn't have custody of any of her three children.
And honestly, the way things are going, the chances of her getting them back aren't looking all that great.
As of right now, her mother Barbara Evans has custody of two of her kids and Nathan Griffith has the third.
What could change - if anything - when the judge makes a ruling in her custody case as early as Friday?
Let's break it down below ...
OK, so all of this Jenelle Evans stuff ... it's just a lot, you know? So grab a drink, or two, and maybe a snack, because you don't want to get hungry, and let's get into every little last depressing detail of this mess.
Justice for Nugget
You know how it starts: after a few years of a steady downward spiral, David Eason kicked things up about a billion notches when he beat and then shot Jenelle's French bulldog puppy, Nugget, for nipping at little Ensley.
As we understand it, all the kids who live at the house were there when it happened, and since David reportedly came back inside "covered in blood," it's easy to imagine that they may have been a little traumatized - to put it mildly.
Sure Thing, Girl
Jenelle pretended like she was considering divorce for a few days, but when David nearly went to jail because he was unable to pay the child support for his son, Kaden, she ran back into his creepy, dog-murdering arms.
Fortuntely, not everyone was so quick to forgive him. The local sheriff's department and animal control opened up a joint investigation against him, and after that, things got intense quick.
Nathan to the Rescue
One of the detectives on the case got in touch with CPS to suggest that the children should be removed from David's care, and last Friday, Nathan Griffith and/or his mother, Doris, picked Kaiser up from daycare.
Taking care of Jace was easy. Barbara, Jenelle's mother, has full custody of him anyway, so she was just told to keep him home instead of allowing visits with her troubled daughter and her obviously unstable husband.
But when it came to Ensley, Jenelle's third child and her only child with Eason, and David's older daughter, Maryssa, things were a bit trickier.
Jenelle and David were apparently instructed to turn over both girls to authorities, but instead, they took them to stay with David's mother. That placement was later approved, and as of Wednesday, all of the kids were gone from The Land.
They did visit the kids at a visitation center that day, but David got into an argument with a social worker, which got them thrown out. Because of course that was a thing that happened.
Big Day in Court
And then, everyone went to court because Jenelle and David wanted to get custody back. That didn't happen. In fact, they continued doing everything they could to make their chances of getting them back worse.
Instead, it was explained to Jenelle that David was under investigation, not her, so if she kicked David out or stayed somewhere away from him, she could get her kids back. Easy decision, right??
This is Jenelle we're talking about. She was photographed holding David's hand as they left the courthouse while the kids left with their temporary guardians, so you can guess how she responded to that.
At this point, we don't really know what's going to happen next, but after the events of the past few weeks, we can speculate with plenty of background information at least.
And the Kids?
As for what's going to happen with the kids, right now, Nathan has Kaiser and Barbara has Ensley and Jace. Whether or not that changes remains to be seen when the judge rules, but we're giving you our best guesses here.
You Go, Barbara
As we said before, Jace is an easy one, at least compared to the other two. Barbara Evans is going to maintain full custody of Jenelle's first-born (from her 16 & Pregnant days, with Andrew Lewis), just like she always has.
Keeping him from visiting Jenelle as long as she's around David shouldn't be that big a deal, and since the last custody agreement they came up with explicitly states that Jenelle has to make sure Jace isn't exposed to David's insanity, it shouldn't be hard for Barbara to change the official visitation schedule, either. Her position strengthens with every day as Jenelle and David ... act like Jenelle and David.
We could see Barbara setting things up so that Jenelle can only see Jace at a visitation center, without David. And really, that would be the best plan. At this point, though, it's unclear if Jenelle will ever leave the guy - even on a temporary basis with her kids' best interests in mind.
As for Kaiser, Nathan has been fighting for him for several months now, and since he has the boy while all this is playing out, he's certainly doing his best to promote the best possible version of himself on social media. He has requested full custody of the little guy, and his prospects are uncertain - then again, so are Jenelle's.
A New Home?
Either way, it's hard to believe someone (anyone) would think Jenelle and David could offer him a stable home at this point. Nathan is far from perfect, but right now, Griffith and his fiance Ashley look like model parents compared to what Kai was experiencing on The Land.
There's all the alleged abuse that Kaiser's suffered from David Eason - Nathan's said he's been documenting everything - and now with the dog murder stuff ... who could leave sweet little Kaiser around that?
Nathan certainly has his issues, but it really does look like he can offer the little boy a better home at this point. And insiders say he has been trying to make Kai his top priority in life, especially in light of recent events.
If a judge doesn't think he's fit, Kaiser could easily go to Nathan's mother. After all, she's been the one supervising the visits between Nathan and Kaiser for a long time now, and from what we understand, she's the one who has done the drop-offs and pick-ups in the past. She's not a stranger to Kaiser by any means, and remains a viable, backup option.
With two other options ahead of a stepfather the sheriff department's apparently named "the most dangerous man in three counties" and a mother who refuses to leave him ... Kaiser can't go back to Jenelle, right?
Poor, Poor Maryssa
Maryssa really has the short end of the straw, considering her mother was in such bad shape that David was able to get full custody a couple of years ago. David, who, remember, once had a restraining order against his own son because he was (allegedly!) violent with that kid's mother.
She and Ensley were said to be staying with David's mother, before Barbara Evans took custody of Ensley. Until the judge rules, Maryssa's fate is far from certain. Are we supposed to believe that David's own mom would keep her grandchildren away from their father? Because we don't have too much confidence in that.
She could perhaps stay with her maternal grandparents, even though no one knows anything about them, but since she does seem to have a strong bond with Ensley, it seems sad to separate them permanently.
Barbara to the Rescue Again?
It might have to happen though, because Barbara is obviously willing to take Ensley. Since she's successfully raising another of her daughter's children, that likely makes her best choice for Ensley - even Jenelle agreed.
Like Maryssa, Ensley isn't lucky enough to a parental figure ready to step in and rescue her from Jenelle and David; Jenelle and David are all she has.
It's also worth pointing out that Barbara isn't as young as she was when she took Jace. Ensley is only two years old, so does she have 16 more years worth of child-rearing in her?
If David's mother is able to prove that she's willing to protect Maryssa, to keep them away from David if he's ultimately deemed unfit to parent, then maybe she's the best choice here.
So Much Sadness
If not, there's always the possibility that CPS might consider foster care the safest place for the Eason girls.
Come On, Jenelle
Look, this whole thing is awful, all right? It's just one great big tragedy unfolding before our eyes, day after day.
A Genuine Monster
But if police and CPS think David is too dangerous to be around children while they investigate, it seems unlikely, given what we know about him, that they're going to wrap up the investigation and a lengthy administrative hearing and then be like "Actually, you know what, David's an OK dude," you know?
An Endless Cycle
And given what we know about Jenelle, she'll pick David over having custody of her children. She's reportedly already done that when offered a chance to visit Kaiser by Nathan. He encouraged her to do so, sans David, allegedly. Jenelle refused.
This time next week, we could easily see Jace out of touch with Jenelle, Kaiser with Nathan full-time, and Ensley with one of her grandmothers or, worst case scenario, placed with another family altogether.