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how to protect children from their abusive father during visitation

post #1 of 37
Thread Starter 

So, in a perfect world, no mother would be forced to send their children to unsupervised visitation with their abuser. But as we know, this is not always possible, and the courts force parents to do this at an alarming rate.

  I realize that this may be what happens in my custody case, and that I will face going to jail or losing my children if I do not comply.  So my question is, what can I do to prepare/protect my children in this instance? Cell phone with instructions to call 911? Ok, but what if he takes it from them?  What if it enrages him further? Anyone who has been in this situation care to share some advice with me? 

post #2 of 37

You can't. I'm sorry. Pray.

 

I did buy my kids a cell phone and I did teach them to call 911 and I also taught them to run for help and what  to do if anything happened. However the dad does take their cell phone every single time and all I can do is sit and pray for their safe return. Like my lawyer says, you just gotta wait until the abuser messes up or hurts one of the kids before you can finally show that supervised visitation is the only way to go.

 

I'm currently sitting and praying waiting for my own children's safe return. My ex is violating our court order as we speak, he is not letting me talk to the kids at all while they are with him. Good luck

post #3 of 37
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Avani View Post

You can't. I'm sorry. Pray.

 

I did buy my kids a cell phone and I did teach them to call 911 and I also taught them to run for help and what  to do if anything happened. However the dad does take their cell phone every single time and all I can do is sit and pray for their safe return. Like my lawyer says, you just gotta wait until the abuser messes up or hurts one of the kids before you can finally show that supervised visitation is the only way to go.

 

I'm currently sitting and praying waiting for my own children's safe return. My ex is violating our court order as we speak, he is not letting me talk to the kids at all while they are with him. Good luck



Oh gosh! I'm so sorry! hug2.gif Unfortunately, that is what I am thinking may have to happen if/when visitations happen. I will just have to hope that he doesn't hurt them too badly.  gloomy.gif

 

post #4 of 37

Unfortunately every person I know in this situation and every professional I talked to... until physical abuse happens while the kids are in that parent's care... there isn't much you can do but pray.  :-( 

 

I don't know why this country (usa) won't get their acts together and their heads out of their "uav violations inserted here"

post #5 of 37

nak

 

unfortunately, it took my dd being molested while in her father's care to get visitation revoked.

post #6 of 37

I don't have direct experience with this, but from reading on here, I've learned the importance of building the document trail as you go. For instance, if your kids are in therapy right now, then if anything bad happens while at their dad's, they can talk to the therapist and that will help the case a lot. If you wait and get them in therapy after something happens, it could be twisted to look like you're making things up to get his visitation taken away.


 

 

 

 

 

 

post #7 of 37

how old are your kids?  that makes a difference in strategy.

post #8 of 37
Thread Starter 

They are under 10, but not babies.  I wish I could be more specific, but I have stalking issues, and am really nervous to post at all.  I do appreciate everyone's replies and help. :)

post #9 of 37

Lundy Bancroft, author of Why Does He Do That?  also has a book out about helping kids recover from domestic abuse.  I have it on hold at the library, but it hasn't come in yet.  Also, if you get them counseling at wherever your local DV advocacy group recommends, then the counselor can often testify in court if you release them to.  I tried to get counseling at the local center for Women and Families here but I was assigned a grad student who sucked and I really thought she would do more damage than good so we quit.  But now I realize that her testifying in court would have really helped us. 

 

We talk about stuff openly.  That daddy needed to go to the doctor to learn how to stop yelling.  That healthy people don't act on their rage like that.  That the Judge said daddy was not allowed to treat us like that any more, and so he needed to be somewhere else.  When they ask why or questions about the divorce, I openly ask if they remember daddy yelling at me and them, and I say that no one is allowed to treat me or them like that.  Sometimes they tell people in public that daddy yelled at us too much and drank and that's why we're getting divorced, but that embarassment is okay with me, if maybe it meants they won't repeat the pattern and partner with an abuser when they grow up.  But I am a no-holds-barred, complete honesty kind of gal, and mine are almost 5 and 8. 

post #10 of 37
Thread Starter 

Thank you. I'm working on finding some counseling for them.  I agree with being honest with the kids.  I think our approaches are very similar.  It doesn't do any good to sugar coat things with kids, especially kids who have been through hell with abuse and alcoholism.  I feel I owe it to them to give them the facts, so that maybe they don't make the choices I made in adulthood.

post #11 of 37

Also, some therapy can help them re-hash and think over past experiences, but cognitive behavioral therapy can help them deal with difficult emotions they have now and will have in the future.  In counseling for child molestation victims, they talk about safety issues and do role playing about scenarios, and say no one is allowed to do X.  If X happens, you do Y.  Run, scream bloody murder, find an adult who looks like grandma, etc.  IDK if there is a name for that kind of counseling, but you need it for your kids.  If you are paying for a counselor, don't just go for a licensed professional counselor, look for someone versed in your issues. 

 

I don't know what kind of abuse you're dealing with.  If you can get your kids openly talking about the issues, you could also cultivate a relationship between them and a mandatory reporter (teacher, doctor, social worker, guidance counselor, whomever).  They will be nervous when openly talking to you about these issues, and then the counselor, and you will have to reassure them often that it is nice, great, whatever that you all can talk about it.  Then try to get them comfortable with the idea of talking to the mandatory reporter about the issue, and hope he or she does as she is supposed to.

post #12 of 37

I don't have any advice for you at all but I just wanted to give some huge hugs and send positive energy and light for you and your family. What a horrible thing to have to deal with and I hope that things only get better for you. stillheart.gif

post #13 of 37
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by provocativa View Post

Also, some therapy can help them re-hash and think over past experiences, but cognitive behavioral therapy can help them deal with difficult emotions they have now and will have in the future.  In counseling for child molestation victims, they talk about safety issues and do role playing about scenarios, and say no one is allowed to do X.  If X happens, you do Y.  Run, scream bloody murder, find an adult who looks like grandma, etc.  IDK if there is a name for that kind of counseling, but you need it for your kids.  If you are paying for a counselor, don't just go for a licensed professional counselor, look for someone versed in your issues. 

 

I don't know what kind of abuse you're dealing with.  If you can get your kids openly talking about the issues, you could also cultivate a relationship between them and a mandatory reporter (teacher, doctor, social worker, guidance counselor, whomever).  They will be nervous when openly talking to you about these issues, and then the counselor, and you will have to reassure them often that it is nice, great, whatever that you all can talk about it.  Then try to get them comfortable with the idea of talking to the mandatory reporter about the issue, and hope he or she does as she is supposed to.



Thank you, I will keep your advice in mind when looking at counseling.  Thankfully, there was not sexual abuse, but there was lots of emotional and some physical abuse. 

 

post #14 of 37
Thread Starter 



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoulJourney View Post

I don't have any advice for you at all but I just wanted to give some huge hugs and send positive energy and light for you and your family. What a horrible thing to have to deal with and I hope that things only get better for you. stillheart.gif



Thank you for the positive energy, me and my kids can use all we can get.

post #15 of 37

The fact that so many men now argue that domestic violence charges are "trumped up" is a sad comment on our society.  I am in the process of attempting to prove it in my case, and am so scared I will lose.  The real potential losers?  The kids.

post #16 of 37

@ EarthyMama- How did you get his visitation revoked? My son was raped by his step-brother & repeatedly fondled by his Father - all while in his care. They pled out on the step-brother's case, and the grand jury did not indict the Father. My son suffers from post traumatic stress disorder from all the trauma he's been through while in his Father's care.  Today I have to tell him I have failed to protect him.  The judge just ordered visitation to resume with Father (unsupervised) immediately.  I am heartsick! 

post #17 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by provocativa View Post

Lundy Bancroft, author of Why Does He Do That?  also has a book out about helping kids recover from domestic abuse. 

Thank you so much for this book recommendation. "When Dad Hurts Mom: Helping Your Children Heal the Wounds of Witnessing Violence". I am reading it right now. It is extremelly hepful. I only wish women who were currently in abusive relationships could read it (I wish I had a long time ago).l

post #18 of 37

Oh, I just realized this is a year old thread. It is a helpful topic for many mothers though.

post #19 of 37

Hi there,

 

I am in the same situation as you.  My ex husband stalks me and gets people to stalk me and ransack my house.  He always abuse my son during visitation, mostly mentally, like locking him in his car for over an hour, or use a metal fork to force open his mouth.  There is nothing I can do.  My country's law in protecting children sucks.  The police and the family support units don't do anything to help although I reported to them.  I need a lot of support to go through this.  Can we be friends?

 

Best Regards

Llik CN

post #20 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by tccandlsccmom View Post

The fact that so many men now argue that domestic violence charges are "trumped up" is a sad comment on our society.  I am in the process of attempting to prove it in my case, and am so scared I will lose.  The real potential losers?  The kids.

Some domestic violence charges are trumped up. I personally, in real life, know THREE women who have made false accusations of domestic violence or sexual assault. These are accusations that I KNOW to be false for certain, and one of the women even later apologized for her actions. In one of the other cases, it was another tool used by an abusive woman against the man she had been abusing. Sometimes, the crazy and even violent ones are women, and men and children deserve to be protected from them, too -- including being protected against legal ramifications due to false allegations.

ETA: I remembered another one. Make that FOUR women I know who have knowingly made false accusations. And these aren't cases where I know a guy and he tells me some woman is lying about him. I know the women, and I have either seen the evidence with my own eyes, like I saw her being abusive and then claiming it was him, or they have admitted that they lied.

That said, my dad was an alcoholic, a drug addict, and a wife-beater, and I am forever grateful that I don't even remember any of that because of my mother getting full custody when I was four. So I also understand that side, and I seriously empathize with any mother struggling to protect her child from a man like my dad. I am so, so sorry for those you who have had to go through this, and I pray that your children will be safe! hug.gif
Edited by michelleepotter - 9/25/13 at 10:40am
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