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Hello. This is my first post here. I just received info from my daughter today and it really makes me sick.
My daughter is 4.5 years old. She has 2 teenage step brothers. I have sole physical/legal custody of her but I am nice and allow her dad visitation (he's never signed the birth certificate and has no legal rights, in the eyes of the law). I told him I did NOT want my daughter left alone with 2 teenage boys. He agreed. He lied.
My daughter was left alone with the brothers and they pulled her pants down, exposing her bare bottom (she doesn't wear underwear, only sweat pants due to a sensory processing disorder). She said she pulled her pants up and hid in a closet until her dad got back home.
I'm boiling mad and sick to my stomach but don't know what to do. Should I be boiling mad? I was sexually abused as a small girl so I'm more sensitive with these kinds of issues.
Her dad is a liar, a manipulator, emotionally abusive. If I talk to him about this he will 1.) deny it ever happened and accuse my daughter of lying 2.) fight with me or 3.) Call me crazy. He's put me through so much hell, I don't know how much longer I can keep going. But knowing that my daughter is being left alone with teenage boys who pull her pants down has my stomach in knots. How would you feel? What should I do? I'm at a loss.
I would be boiling mad too. Is there any way she doesn't have to be there especially since its supposed to be her dad visitation period but when she is left alone with her brothers she is not doing the dad visitation so she shouldn't be there.
If you can't stop visitation or get supervised visitation. I would go to the boys school and tell their guidance counselor about how your afraid those boys will start abusing your daughter.
Yes, you should be fuming! If he has no legal rights and never signed the birth certificate and you said that he has no court ordered visitation, then do not let her return until something is ordered by the court. I'm going to assume he's not paying you child support? And even if he is, I would withhold visitation until he gets a court order at this point.
He went against your wishes allowing her to stay with them. You say he isn't trust worthy anyway, so you can't believe him even if you did come to an agreement. You said he's manipulative and emotionally abusive, so do you want your daughter around him anyway?
If you ignore this and continue to allow your daughter to go over there and something happens, since you are her sole legal gaurdian, YOU could get in trouble as well. Additionally, if you do allow her to continue to go over there, and down the road her father does decide to go to court to get visitation, you won't be able to bring this occurence or concern up in court. If you did, it could come back against you for allowing her to continue to be placed in danger.
I'm not saying deny her any contact with her father, but I am strongly suggesting that you do not allow her to be at his house without you. Instead, what about offering to meet her dad at a park? Allowing him to come visit with her at your house? You seem comfortable with the two of them spending time alone together, so maybe even ask that he come to your house to watch her while you go out and run errands, so they can have one on one time. Have him take her to a movie. There are ways to foster a relationship between the two of them without having to risk her being put in a similar situation again. Honestly, even WITH her dad being home, I would be concerned about her being in the same house as the two older boys (not in general, just knowing what happened before). WHY would teenage boys do something like that? I'm usually very logical, but I honestly cannot come up with a legitimate or innocent reason for it. They are old enough to know that it is not acceptable.
__________________ Amy: Wife to my Handsome Husband Mommy to my superhero, Max (3) and Luckiest Bonus Mama to Sammy (5)
I would not allow her to see him again until something is ordered unless it is supervised by you or someone that you do trust. Again though...I agree that if I were in the situation as described (not having any other information than this) I would not allow my child to be in contact with someone who is manipulative, etc... I would 100% not allow her to go to his house again...even if you are there. She will likely be terrified of that house regardless of if they are there or not... You will be responsible for the abuse if you send her there and it continues in any manner... Pulling down her pants is abuse...period. Fuming and boiling over are necessary and NOT an over-reaction or ultra-sensitive response...
I agree. This is a very serious matter not to be taken lightly. As far as I'm concerned, you gave him plenty of chances and he straight up lied to you. He doesn't deserve the right to spend time with his daughter until he can earn your and your daughter's trust.
Thank you so much, everyone. I don't feel so alone after reading your responses. My daughter's Sensory Processing Disorder has never been clinically diagnosed. However, her behavior/symptoms have been worse lately and we had an appointment at her peditrician yesterday to get a referal to a therapist for her new behavior. Her dad went with us (as always). Before the appointment, I wrote my daughters symptoms (of changed/odd behavior) on the paper and I listed the "lies" my daughter has been telling as well. It was the only way I could tell her doctor what's going on without angering him. I worded it like: "symptom 10.) She's telling lies. For example, she says she was alone with her brothers and they pulled her pants down but her dad said it never happened." I was praying the doctor would pick up on the wording, without her dad knowing I was trying to wave flags.
The doctor came in the room after reading 1.5 pages of symptoms. The thing she narrowed in on? The first thing she asked? "When did her brothers pull her pants down? Are they alone with her often?". I thought I was going to die, afraid of her dad's reaction. I told the doctor, "She just told me this last night...but it's just a lie and I guess it has to do with her behavior disorder....". I believe my daughter 100% but I'm playing dumb in front of her dad.
I'm so relieved that the doctor picked up on that. The doctor said, "What has happened recently to cause the change in behavior? Are there new people? Did someone move or die? Something has triggered her behavior...." I was so relieved to hear the doctor tell us that, but so afraid of her dad fighting with me afterwards. She referred us to a counselor and possibly to a psychiatrist (but I'm NOT going to medicate my daughter).
If the professional tells me "she's lying", I will believe it's a lie (but not turn my back on what my daughter tells me). Until a professional tells me that, I believe my daughter...but I'm telling him that our daughter must have a habitual lying problem that needs addressed.
I talked to my daughter's therapist today on the phone and she said it does sound like there's cause for concern and said there are possible red flags up. I made an appointment. Hoping to get to the bottom of whatever is going on.
I wouldn't accept that she is lying...possibly misunderstanding or exaggerating but not lying. She isn't old enough to come up with a lie like that all on her own. She either has background knowledge that she shouldn't have or it really happened... A psychologist/counselor should know that...
lurking grandma here --- just wanted to give you the heads up that your ped (and the counselors/psych etc) is required by law to report that as child abuse if he even remotely thinks it is. that will lead to a CPS investigation, possibly without any advance notice to you. keep your baby close by and maybe call the dr on the phone and let him know more clearly of your fears (both for your daughter and for how the father will react to your telling the truth). i sure hope it all works out well for her and for you. oh and a child that young would not be lying about what happened. i would definitively let her know that you believe her. God bless you and keep you both safe.
__________________ school's out for the summer.....
I connected some dots, of Daughter's behavior. Daughter has also told me some more things, and displayed some sexual behavior.
Long story short, DCFS became involved. They are investigating. They sent my daughter to the Children's Advocacy Center, where a specialist interviewed her. Behind a 2-way mirror, they video taped...and a detective and investigator watched. I do not know what she told them, but she told them enough for them to say...
"This will be an ongoing investigation. We will contact the police and the police will contact the perpetrator."
Our life has been upside down for 2 weeks, but my world fell apart when those words were spoken to me by the investigator (4 days ago).
So sorry that you and your daughter are going through all this Hopefully it has been caught early enough that there wont be any lasting emotional damage and it was caught before anything really bad happened. Have you looked into getting a restraining order so that if sh*t hits the fan and the police show up on his doorstep he can't come after you?
Wow, really sucks to have to go through this but at least DCFS are taking action and it looks like they may figure out the problem. I will definitely look into a restraining order if possible, although the father most likely will have to have supervised visits or no visits at all. But if I remember correctly, the father currently doesn't have any court ordered visits so stopping visits all together wouldn't go against you at all.