How Can He Ignore This

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by WSM, Jun 5, 2009.

  1. WSM

    WSM New Member

    difficult child got out of the psychiatric hospital 10 days ago. The day after he got out he stole a steak knife and used it to slash a stuffed animal. Five days later, he steals another steak knife and slices his mattress.

    His father searches the room for the steak knife and finds $65. It can only be stolen. husband hides the fact that he found the money. He figures if anyone is missing it they would have said something and he buys himself new shoes with it.

    On the day we were supposed to take difficult child from the psychiatric hospital we had a family counselling session. In this session husband admits that in the prior week or so before the hospitalization, difficult child gave him abt 16 ritalin pills that he said he 'found' in his pockets at school (difficult child is always 'finding things in his pockets that other people put there just to get him in trouble. At home people put weapons in his pockets to get him in trouble at school, and at school people put rx drugs in his pockets I guess to get him in trouble at home). husband kept this from me. He figured since difficult child fessed up about the pills, he was probably innocent.

    Of course I'd been telling him for a while that difficult child has suspicious amounts of money. And difficult child on the day he was hospitalized did steal a classmate's nintendo DS (but husband said it wasn't a big deal because all the kids at difficult child's are criminals and the kid probably stole it himself).

    Oh and difficult child admitted that he crawls out his window at night, but only to pee on the ledge roof under his window. I'd been telling him I thought difficult child was jumping out off the roof (which we know he did once out the back of the house, denting the shed roof) and then coming into the house in the late night or early morning hours and wandering around. husband scoffs because how could he get back, little 12 year old he is. Well the other boys would get on the roof by standing on the car, then the electrical box, and difficult child goes to a military school and has good upper body strength, he could do it. But difficult child lied and said he can't, he's too small and weak and he only pees on the roof because little ole him is afraid to use the real bathroom because he has an alarm on the door (altho he's been told to open the door and say he has to go to the bathroom and someone will watch him go in and out of the bathroom--but difficult child loves to pee where he's not supposed to).

    So husband admits last night to finding the money and says he's not going to say anything to difficult child about it (just like he didn't say anything about the DS, the stuffed animal slashing, the mattress slashing, and the knife stealing).

    So where could difficult child get $60? Other possible solutions: the money he was supposed to give to the driver every other week for his transportation costs. We know he stole from them in the the past and the school took the loss and covered up for him. Drugs. He was tested for drug use in the hospital, but that doesn't mean he doesn't deal. Stealing from dad's wallet (even tho dad usually keeps it in our room), stealing from people at school.

    Finally husband conceded he stole from me, but to do that he also had to concede that difficult child was crawling out the window and prowling the house at night.


    And get this: he's not going to say anything to difficult child because difficult child will just lie to him anyway. He's going to replace my money and just ignore it.

    When I protested I was reminded it wasn't my business he was the parent. When I protested the fact that he was hiding things like the found money and the drugs from me, husband said, what does it matter to you anyway, how does it affect you?

    Well, I could hide my money better, protect myself and my kids better from a 12 yo who prowls the house at night and is fascinated by knives and slashing. I could better secure our rx drugs. I could keep my event log better updated.

    If your kid is showing up with unexplained money or expensive items isn't it a parent's responsibility to get to the bottom of how they got it?

    difficult child is a kid who for 4 years now has broken law after law, exhibited violence, vandalism, lack of remorse and conscience, and is getting bolder and is cool and disdainful about getting caught. He offers a lie and if that doesn't work, <shrug>...

    3 Felonies, running around at night, running away, pictures of killing his sister, stealing laptops, cellphones, electronics, clothes, books, bikes, money, false accusations of abuse, staging his own kidnapping, compulsive lying... And he gets caught most of the time and nothing is ever done. Even being arrested wasn't so bad, everyone tried to make it easy for him. He was 'the baby' at the psychiatric hospital. The teachers believe the bunk about his family abusing him. And at the most he's been minorly inconvenienced. Maybe yelled at. And now finds himself watched all the time.

    So why should he stop. People think he's mentally ill because he 'doesn't understand cause and effect'. But they are wrong: for him cause and effect is he does something wrong and is rewarded by getting away with it, or he does something wrong and nothing bad happens and often he can use it as a platform to garner sympathy...but if he can't, it's still no big deal, it's ignored or goes away by itself.

    For difficult child the effect of any negative cause has been positive. He's been TRAINED (inadvertently by well meaning people) to find misbehavior a positive or neutral experience.

    I don't understand it. I don't understand it at all.

    How can my husband just ignore the increasing criminal personality criminal activity emerging in his son?
  2. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I really can not comprehend how any adult could ignore those facts. Find if he is not going to say anything to difficult child, but is he going to be telling psychiatrist or anyone in authority????
  3. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not


    I am reaching out to you through cyber-space to link my arm in yours....

    I hear you. I feel you. I know exactly where you are coming from. I feel the terror....the strange disembodied sense that this cannot possibly be happening....and yet it is...and why do you seem to be the only person who understands how serious this is?

    I wish I had more answers and more to offer you than my support.

    Stay strong...

  4. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    I am so sorry. Your husband is not just ignoring, he is enabling through the lack of action. difficult child is secure in the "Dad doesn't care - he will let me do whatever I want." behavior. husband must start taking action! Who cares if difficult child will only lie, that is not husband's 1st concern. His first concern is to confront and then if difficult child lies, his 2nd concern is to call him on it. husband must send difficult child the message that what he is doing is WRONG and husband will no longer put up with it.
  5. totoro

    totoro Mom? What's a GFG?

    I'm sorry
    I don't know how you are staying in this situation. It sounds unsafe for you and your children.
    It sounds like your H is not going to see the light any time soon.
    I would give my husband an ultimatum. You and you kids deserve better than this.

    Your H's kids deserve better than this. difficult child deserves help.

    I hope you can find the strength to stand up to him and force his hand. Your whole family needs help.

    I am praying for you
  6. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    I agree with totoro. It sounds like it is past time to take the PCs and run. Since difficult child is not your legal child it is likely that you will be able to get a Order of Protection against him based on his behavior. That would protect them as husband can't have them together during his visits.

    I'm sorry that husband is in such denial and making it so much worse for all.
  7. WSM

    WSM New Member

    OMG, I don't believe it.

    The kid difficult child stole the DS from gave difficult child another gameboy and game.

    Let's reward theivery.

    husband is delighted.
  8. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    husband is making a choice to ignore his son's behavior. He is making a choice to put you and your other children at risk. You need to make a choice of what you are going to do about it. You and husband are both playing a dangerous game--he with his choices and you with yours. It's time for you to make a choice.
  9. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I am so terribly sorry that this child has been taught to do the things he does.

    difficult child is showing some scary and serious things. He is extremely dangerous. Period.

    If this was not your stepson, what would you do about it?

    Everywoman is right. It is time to make choices of your own. Totoro and others are also right. It is time to choose your children and yourself. Get AWAY from this child. FAR away. If he ever thinks he can hurt or kill you or the girls or husband, then he will likely try very hard to do so.

    I so wish there was a magic wand that could stop the cruelty and the pain.

    I am so sorry that husband is denying difficult child the treatment he needs. difficult child is very terribly ill. You and the girls are living in fear and that is NOT healthy. husband is very wrong to hide these things that difficult child does. If the tdocs and psychiatrists don't have all the info they can't truly help.
  10. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I'm so sorry. Your husband is .. well, delusional, if he thinks this will just go away by ignoring it.

    This is not an easy choice. But I suspect your heart, and your gut, are telling you what you have to do.
  11. graceupongrace

    graceupongrace New Member


    The stories about stealing knives and slashing things give me the chills. And on top of everything else you've told us, well....

    I understand how sometimes we choose not to confront our difficult children with things, but that doesn't mean we ignore them altogether. The experts (psychiatrist, therapist, etc.) need to be aware of all that's going on. If husband hides this stuff, he is doing everyone, difficult child included, a huge disservice.

    Please protect yourself and the other kids; it doesn't sound as if husband will.

    I'm so sorry that you're going through this. Hugs. (((())))
  12. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Did he REALLY "give" the new game to him? Or is this difficult child's version of the truth?
  13. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I'm on the "get out and run fast" bandwagon. This kid is sick and so is your husband. Frankly, I'd be more afraid of the slashed animal and mattress (the violent intent) and the weird peeing out the window than stealing. Stealing is actually more normal of a bad behavior than the other stuff. They are BOTH sick--and you can't stop it or do anything but save your own two kids from this madness. If you decide to stay, I'll let others try to help you out and I feel it is harming your children (and yourself) to stay there under any circumstances. Did you know that Ritalin is sold on the street? What do you think SS was doing with it? Probably selling it, unless he is using it already.

    All I can say is run, run, run...or you'll get caught up in their illnesses and never be free. I think you are already accepting more than most people can imagine. Crazy becomes normal if you live through it enough.

    Is this what you want for your own kids? Get out. The man is as sick as his son. They will drown together...don't go with them and free your children! Good luck, whatever you decide. I kind of give up.
  14. WSM

    WSM New Member

    Yes he did. Yesterday husband went to a 'graduation' ceremony at difficult child's school. The kid difficult child stole from and his parent were there, and husband talked to to both of them. This is a legitimate gift.

    The irony, this gift is from the kid that husband previously said was a criminal (because he went to that school and all the kids in that school are criminals) and said the other kid probably stole the Nintendo DS. Now it turns out difficult child's victim was actually a nice person. Maybe I should ask husband why he's allowing difficult child to accept stolen goods from a criminal?

    (husband will say...oh, I just said that because I was upset because difficult child was about to go into the psychiatric hospital. husband always says that the things he says when he's upset don't really 'count', our marriage counsellor supports this view, however, I've made it clear that they still count with me...but big deal).

    I don't know what to do. I know that difficult child is dangerous. Today we are driving 3 hours away to the college town my son is going to and I'm going to buy him a condo. My other son is also graduating from HS this year. If I leave husband, I can send both older kids to that condo to live and then just have to support me and my youngest son here. I shouldn't have any trouble doing that.

    But what about my stepdaughter.

    by the way...last night I wanted to cut salami and couldn't find my favorite knife. Mentioned it to husband. He went up and searched difficult child's room and found three knives. Not steak knifes but a bread knife, a slicing knife and a small slicing knife.

    He yelled at difficult child, who said he didn't take them. husband took away the new gameboy and I heard him yell, "Until you can prove it wasn't you, it's going to be you. I'll help you prove it, I want to get to the bottom of this ****".

    husband then went out to the neighborhood pub.

    WTH does that mean?
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2009
  15. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Whether or not your husband *said* the boy was a criminal doesn't change the fact that he *is* a criminal. He stole from his parents. difficult child is in possession of stolen goods. End of story.

    I think sitting back and evaluating a "leaving" plan is a good idea right now, it will help weigh your options here. I can't remember, do you have your own therapist that you can dicuss this with? If you dont, I think it would be a very good idea to start seeing someone by yourself, just to help work you work through all this. I'm sorry to say that I don't see any way that it CAN'T get worse if things continue the way they are going right now.
  16. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    If the only reason you are staying is for stepdaughter, does she have any relatives who care about what's going on with her? Will they help? I would try to engage any appropriate relatives and get them to offer to take her in. She's not safe there, with or without you. Nobody is.

    If nobody in the family can or will help you help stepdaughter, then I'd take the plunge and call social services. I hate them and almost never advise anyone to call them, but this girl is at great risk from her brother and her father won't protect her and YOU can't protect her from this growing boy--nor can you protect your own child OR is in the best interest of your child in my opinion to head for the hills with him. Maybe somehow you can help stepdaughter while not living with her. Tell somebody outside of clueless mental health professionals what your fears are. Then you've done all you can. When stepson is six feet tall and heavy, what will you do if he comes at you or your child or stepdaughter with a knife or a gun? He's getting bigger, older, and way scary...well on his way to full blown psychopathy. And your hub is a first rate enabler--he is going to stick up for this boy and let his daughter suffer. And you can't change him.

    I urge you one last time to get out before he really hurts somebody. His behavior is way over the top even for a difficult child and the stealing is the least of your problems with him--he has violent tendencies and no remorse. Get out, get out, get out...and help your stepdaughter from afar. You can probably do as much for her living out of the house than with her because the men in your family will never admit that difficult child is on the cusp of becoming a dangerous, probably violent criminal with no conscience.

    JMO. Good luck. I feel for you, AND for your kids and stepdaughter.
  17. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    Where is your step-daughter's mother?

    I agree with MWM, get out and call CPS to help your step-daughter.

    There was a boy in our town who had all the signs of growing pyschopathy including an obsession with knives. Parents were in complete denial. Dad even bought him a huge "hunting knife". That son at 15 was charged as a juvenile with the murder of an 11 year old. Parents swore it couldn't be him. They bailed him out and he used that opportunity to murder his brother and violently rape his sister. He used the "hunting knife" in all 3 crimes.

    You sound terrified. Please listen to yourself.
  18. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    Red flags flying all over the place.

    Your difficult child's obsession with knives is so over the top. To include butter knives in a collection! He is obsessed with a knife regardless of its strength.

    Do you know for a fact that your husband actually talked to the kid's parents or is he just telling you that to get your focus off this latest crime? When he took the gameboy away from difficult child and said those words about finding out where he really got it from looks to me like he either did not talk to the parents or found out that the other parents believe the gameboy was difficult child's all along?

    Those words, "Until you can prove it wasn't you!" - I am wondering if difficult child convinced the other boy that the gameboy belonged to him. difficult child may have planted the stolen item in the other boy's possession and then told the other boy that it was his so the other boy gave it back?

    husband is finally getting to the end of his rope but does not know how to stand up to this kid. He took the item away, yelled, and ran for the pub.
    husband needs to find a way to not be afraid of his son's rejection of him when he does discipline.

    You need to share your fears with husband over your safety and the other kids'. Tell him you will not live like this and either difficult child gets inpatient treatment or you are gone and you want his other kids out of the house also.
  19. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    I think it means he KNOWS there's a problem, and although he may not completely understand or accept it, he's desperate for it to stop. I think the "I'll help you prove it" statement is another example of his codependency out of control. It seems like he thinks he can control difficult child's behavior if he could just be a little stronger or smarter or X or Y or Z or whatever delusional solution he can come up with. He ran to the pub because he can't deal with this.

    You've got some very tough decisions to make for yourself. I'm very sorry things are so chaotic and out of control. As much as you worry for your SD, you need to first take care of yourself and your bio kids by whatever means possible. If husband won't acknowledge his own part in this circus, difficult child's treatment or recovery is not likely to work, in my opinion. MWM's suggestion of other family to enlist help from for the SD is a good idea.

    I hope you can talk some of this over with a therapist that's there just for YOU. Or a member of the clergy, social worker, etc.

  20. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    The others have made very good suggestions. I think your husband is trying to cling to his delusion that difficult child is not extremely dangerous and extremely mentally ill.

    You need to see if relatives will take stepdau. If not, can you take her with you? Would you be willing to "keep" her if you and husband separated? Would husband insist she stay with him?

    If he does insist she continues to live with difficult child and him, well, that would make reporting to Child protection (whatever that is called in your state) a MUST. NOT to "get back" at husband for anything. The report is to get stepdau to safety, and ONLY for that reason. You will have to have documentation of times difficult child hurt her, damaged her stuff, scared her, threatened her, etc....

    You will need to show that you are not the adult who is "allowing" daughter to be hurt. It is husband who is being at the least a negligent parent. He can be CHARGED with neglect or abuse because he knows difficult child is dangerous and did not protect daughter from being harmed. Just like a spouse is charged if they knew that the other spouse is hurting the child and they didn't take whatever steps needed to keep the other kids SAFE from the abuser.

    We had to face that hurdle when I had Wiz removed from our home. Child Protection was run by a man who had a son on thank you's basketball team. I didn't know this until late in the season when he showed up in court while we were in a hearing to handle getting Wiz into a placement. He had pulled the file on Wiz and taken over on it. He testified to the judge that we were doing everything humanly possible to protect the kids - ALL the kids, not just difficult child. with-o that they could have taken thank you and Jessie away from us. NOT difficult child, just the PCs!!

    Anyway, now is the time to make sure you have a bag packed in case you need to leave in a hurry - even keeping a "go bag" in the trunk of your car if you can. Make sure you have ALL needed medications packed, a list of doctors and other professionals you have seen, copies of birth certificates, vaccine records, social security cards, copy of lease or mortgage, and some CASH.

    I truly hope husband sees the light very soon. Because I think difficult child will really hurt someone if he doesn't get some intensive treatment in the very near future.

    Sending gentle hugs to all of you, but esp to stepdau. It just seems like she will end up with the short end of the stick because husband may not let her leave with you. And a child protection investigation can be very painful to everyone involved.