Hit the ground running

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by FTN, Dec 30, 2007.

  1. FTN

    FTN New Member

    Me: 25
    Girlfriend: 37
    Daughters: 19, 16 and 9

    Background: First two are from previous marriage.

    I'd like to think of myself as someone who is good with kids. But I don't know how to deal with the youngest. Her father had visitation with her every other weekend. But he would never show to pick her up, or if he did, it only be for a few hours. Those times when he would take her for more than half the time he should have, he would just sit her in front of a TV while he got drunk and often had a different lady friend over. He didn't even get her anything for Christmas or her birthday last year. All the while she would tell us how she hates us, loves her dad, would break the property of others, is at least two years behind in school, etc. He is a former drug addict who cheated on their mother and used to beat them all.

    A few months back, the older two came out saying he molested them years ago. The youngest knows nothing of the accusations. So now the visitations are two hours and supervised every other weekend.

    Is this fairly common Stockholm syndrome or what?
  2. mrscatinthehat

    mrscatinthehat Seussical

    I came into my two difficult child's (gifts from god) by marriage. Their bio mom was the worst - as in wild wolves would be a better parent. Yet they craved the need for her. In my twos cases there is attatchment issues. It can definately be fairly common. Sending you strength to get through this. It isn't easy coming into the situation after things have happened. I give you a lot of credit for trying.

  3. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    It's pretty normal for children to idolize the absent parent. It seems the more absent, the more idolization. They don't get to see the flaws of that parent and can easily create a fictional, fantasy world of what life would be like with that parent. Often, when these parents do make an appearance it's what I call 'Disneyland Dad' time...no actual parenting, just having fun. Definitely not reality.

    My daughter's father stopped contact with her when she was 3. There were several years when everytime we went past Bob Evans restaurant she told the story (to me and anyone else she was with) of how her daddy was mean to her there one time. Then that suddenly disappeared from her memory and she started making up stories about him. Now she is just devastated that he wants nothing to do with her. I know she's better off without him around, but she hasn't been able to see that for herself.

    Is the 9 year old in therapy of any kind?
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Yikes. If he molested the older one, I'd be suspicious that he molested the younger one too. Good heavens, no matter how the child feels about Dad I wouldn't allow him alone with her for two hours or two minutes! Why isn't he in jail???
    Has the nine year old ever been evaluated? This is kind of sick but sometimes kids feel close to adults who sexually abuse them, mistaking that for love. Sounds like you have your hands full. What does your girlfriend say?
    Also, as I've said in other threads, many kids don't like to see their parents with men other than Dad, no matter how nice you are and how rotten HE is. Kids love Dad no matter what, but this one sounds potentially dangerous...kids are often not forthcoming about being abused. Mine were abused by an older foster child and never told me. We had to figure it out, even though we had that "you can tell us if anyone touches you in a bad way because we'll believe YOU" talk. Why would he molest the older kids and not the nine year old? The poor kid needs therapy badly.
  5. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Welcome. You are a kind man who is concerned with the 9 yr old daughter of your girlfriend.
    I agree that kids love the Disney land parent and are hard pressed to see the reality of a poor parent's ability or lack of.
    She is going to have to see that reality on her own. You are going to have to work on protecting your stuff and creating a home that is different from what she was exposed to.
    Good luck. I hope mom works with her daughter and helps her with therapy.
  6. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    This isn't Stockholm syndrome at all. It's abuse.

    You need to get a psychiatrist to evaluate them 1st
    You need to have them psychiatrist report this to DSS
    You need to get a recommendation for therapy. And THEN go from there.

    Good luck and welcome to the board.

  7. FTN

    FTN New Member

    DSS knows. We haven't heard anything about it for a few months. The next court hearing is in about two weeks for supervised visitation continuation.

    Unfortunately, her mom is frustrated with her insurance so she's not really trying to find a counselor for her at the moment.

    I think we should tell the difficult child but the lawyers have suggested otherwise.
  8. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I'm confused reading the thread. Maybe it's holiday lag but do I
    understand correctly that you have confidence in the fact that the biodad has been an abuser, have reported it to DSS but your
    wife doesn't want to pay the money for counseling?

    Geez, I hope it's my "old age" kicking in and that I don't understand at all. DDD
  9. FTN

    FTN New Member

    The authorities have been notified. The next court appearance is for the supervised visitations to continue. He wants unsupervised -- like thats going to happen.

    She does want the counseling but is just frustrated in dealing with finding a counselor who takes her insurance.
  10. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    When a psychiatrist or psychologist reports this to DSS - it can take a while - if ever - BUT

    YOU and your wife can GO TO THE POLICE DEPARTMENT and MAKE A STATEMENT with your children. They have police that deal with this sort of thing and they will know how to handle it.

    - If your wife is frustrated now about how to find a place that will take her insurance - how in the world does she think the kids feel? And they still get to see bio dad?

    Something isn't right here. As their step-father I would want to know RIGHT NOW - before there was a single breath of his air their way what the blue hades is going on. Why or HOW does he still get any ANY ANY visitation with them if he molested them?

    If the girls ARE NOT fabricating this - WHY IN THE HECK does he get to even be with them at all? And if they ARE fabricating it? Then they need to be in therapy yesterday!!

    Here is the number for the National Child abuse hot line.It's the biggest ad in the front of almost EVERY phone book in every city. 1-800-4-A-CHILD. Call them and tell them where you live and ask THEM what resources, recourses can be taken. Also if your wife is dragging her feet about this - she may be in denial (understandable) but that would mean you all should be in some type of family therapy. I know - I've been there - and we all went, 2x a week. Nothing embarrassing about it - they are children. They deserve to be PROTECTED - not subjected to him over and over with or without supervision - he can still manipulate them.

    Also FYI - Mental health is available to EVERYONE at a sliding scale fee - EVEN IF you have insurance. For sexual abuse victims I would be on the phone all day with local agencies finding out who can see them for nothing - I wouldn't wait on someone from the insurance company to call me back with an "okay" they don't care.

    I realize you may feel your hands are tied - and one daughter is 19 I think you said - but you can encourage her to seek help. I'm really sorry any of you have to go through this -but I'm glad you found us.

    Good luck
  11. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat

    Not to beat a dead horse, but to add:

    The YWCA does crisis counseling to rape/incest/molestation victims.

    Any county health department will see clients (especially kids) on a sliding scale and often free for mental health.

    And why is this toad not in jail?
  12. FTN

    FTN New Member

    I don't know why he isn't in jail yet. The police came and took statements from the girls a few months back. For the third time, the authorities are aware of it.
  13. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Um, it might be time to ask why the LAWYERS get a say in what is told to the children? Is it to preserve a case for future prosecution? Or what?

    If it was my kids I would be heading to court with ALL the upsets that happen after his supervised visitation and ask for NO VISITATION, If not given my way I would be headed to the media. Not to expose the kids to scrutiny, but to put some pressure on the system to protect the kids!!

    Can you take a day off an call around to find some counselling for the kids? They may not take insurance, but many will counsel free of charge in this situation.

    I know it is very frustrating. And worrying. I am so sorry the youngest is acting out.

    Has the youngest been evaluated to see if she was abused sexually? She may not tell. Her behavior says there is something going on.

    Does the 9yo have an IEP, or one in progress? This is where the school evaluates and meets with parents and teachers to figure out a plan to help the child. If this is not in place, go to the Special Education Forum and ask there about getting one. The youngest NEEDS some kind of help.

    Practically, for your life, put locks on doors. Your bedroom esp, and keep it locked and the key put up. You and her mom should have keys, that is it. Put anything you don't want broken in your room. Let the older 2 have locks on their doors (with keys) to protect their stuff. They, you and their mom should have keys.

    Go to the bookstore and buy The Explosive Child by Ross Greene. It will help give a different understanding of the parenting difficult children often need. Also look at http://www.loveandlogic.com to see if this is something that would work for your family. We preferred love and logic, but Explosive Child was helpful. The website gives you an idea of what it is about, and lots of free downloads that are very helpful. Then you can get the books as you need them.

    Sending hugs,


    ps. Is there someone at the police dept or prosecutor's office you can contact to see what is going on? They should have a Victim's Rights Advocate, maybe that would help?
  14. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat

    I apologize. I read "authorities", but did not read "police" or "jail".

    Oookay. To further clarify, these kids are all girls. None are yours. The toad is the father of the youngest only? And he molested the older girls? And is going for visitation of the younger one...unsupervised visitation? He really is a toad.

    I give you big ups, you have a huge role to play in this. It has been said here a lot of times, but you will be the target of "I hate you" for a long time. No matter what you do. Just because of the nature of the beast. The girl is only 9, and if she was abused too, there is that bridge to cross. If she was NOT abused, she will first not understand why there is suddenly this barrier when there never used to be, and if/when the time comes to tell her, she may not believe you.

    Talk to your g/f about some free counseling in the meantime. Free does not mean bad or sub-standard. All 3 girls could use this, and it sure would not hurt for a family counselor to see all 5 of you as well. This is a very difficult thing to process. I am so very sorry that these girls had to go through this.

    And this guy really is a toad. Beat of luck in the court proceedings.