One sign that Courtney Love is getting her life back together: She’s just won back custody of her 12-year-old daughter, Frances Bean Cobain.
On Monday, a Los Angeles juvenile court judge ordered reunification of the mother and daughter, the only child from the singer’s marriage to late Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain.
“Courtney Love’s daughter, Frances, has been returned to her after a judge indicated satisfaction in Ms. Love’s efforts to turn around her life and found it was in the best interests of mother and daughter to be reunited,” said Howard Weitzman, Love’s attorney.
The judgment comes after a 15-month legal battle that started a week after Love’s overdose and subsequent arrest on drug charges in October 2003, because Frances had been present during the OD (see “Courtney Love Fighting For Custody Of Daughter Frances Bean” ).
Officials from the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services tried to interview Love about the situation, only to be turned away. On October 10, 2003, the department went to Frances’ school and placed her in the care of her grandmother, Cobain’s mother, Wendy O’Connor. This move, however, caused strife between the two women, who fought outside a Los Angeles courtroom (see “Courtney Love Trades Blows With Kurt Cobain’s Mom, Admits To OxyContin OD” ). Love was ordered to move out of her home so that Frances could live there with her nanny and be supervised by Love’s stepfather, Frank Rodriguez, and an aunt; Love was granted supervised visitation.
Since then, Love has said she was cleaning up for the sake of her child, and has defended her parenting skills on Howard Stern’s radio show and on “The View” (see “Courtney: Being A Rock-Star Single Mom Makes Me A Target” and “Courtney Love Unloads — Coherently! — On ‘The View’ “ ). Love told the hosts of the ABC daytime program that “my kid is my first priority.” Likewise, she told Stern, “I’m a good mother. I’ve done a good job.”
“Life is about choices, and I’ve chosen to move forward with my life in a healthy and positive way,” Love said Thursday. “Having my daughter back with me is exciting.”
“I am looking forward to the future and continuing to entertain and create great music,” she added. “I really appreciate the encouragement and support I’ve received from my fans and the community.”
Frances, who was born in August 1992, was previously taken away from Love shortly after a Vanity Fair article was published in which the singer admitted to using drugs during her pregnancy. The child was returned to Love and Cobain several months later.
[This story was updated at 5:10 p.m. ET on 01.13.05]