I would like to discuss ways to protect our children after the following incident happened:
On Friday my ex father-in-law (DD2's grandfather) came and picked up DD2 and DS1 (not bio related to granddad). The kids were to spend the night with the grandma and granddad then DS1 was to go kayaking down the river with the granddad on Saturday. DS1 has been canoeing (flat calm water) with granddad before and had a lot of fun. I called the grandma on Saturday morning to see how the night had gone and she said that both kids were wonderful, no problems.
Saturday evening the kids get home and DS1 is in a horrible mood. I follow him up to his room to see if I can prompt him to talk (he has an expressive/receptive language disorder and goes to speech/language therapy 5 days a week). The next thing I hear is DH (DS1's stepdad) yelling at granddad, "Get the out of my house! Get the out of my house right now before I beat your !" I got downstairs just in time to see DH slamming the door in granddad's face. DH turns and tells me that the granddad had told DH that DS1 had been a "little shit" and the he had to get "physical with him". DH asked what he meant by "get physical" and the granddad said that he had beat DS1 with the kayak paddle for "not complying". So DH threw him out of the house
We went upstairs and found marks from the paddle on DS1's left arm and shoulder. The river is not close to my house so those marks were still there after 2+ hours. I called the police to file a report. Surprisingly DS1 came downstairs to talk to the police. He was able to articulate that he was in the front of the kayak so his back was to granddad and that the rushing water was too loud so he couldn't hear granddad talking. DS1 has central auditory processing disorder as well as the receptive/expressive language disorder and is on the spectrum. Granddad apparently just assumed that DS1 was intentionally not complying with instructions but DS1 just couldn't hear / understand him. So granddad hit DS1 with the paddle. This happened three times and only stopped because DS1 told granddad "hit me again and see what happens". DS1 is 13 years old, 5'8" and 120lbs so the threat of physical reaction from DS1 was enough to stop the hitting. BUT the granddad then launched into verbal attacks saying things like "this is why you don't have any friends". I have to give DS1 credit for not clocking him! The police told me that I have to file a report with the county in which this happened so I am doing that today. I also called the grandma and told her that none of my children would be allowed over at her house again due to the incident. She had no idea that anything had happened and was furious with her husband. She's a very reasonable woman and she agreed that I should file a police report.
Later to add insult to injury DD2 told me that she was upset because granddad had been watching "Jessie" on the Disney Channel with her and he started in talking about how "fat" the main character Jessie is. DD2 says to me, "my body looks like her body (Jessie's body) and she is not fat". DD2's aunt has an eating disorder and it's not a far stretch to imagine that it comes from hearing stuff like that from the granddad. UGH! What the hell is wrong with some people?!? I knew the granddad was socially awkward and a little off. He is a retired engineer and seems a bit aspergers but now I think he is just a !
Thanks for letting me vent. I had a hard time sleeping last night just thinking about this! Please give me your suggestions about how to prevent anything like this from happening again. I had thought that the kids were safe.