How do you handle the fear from threats? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 13 Old 12-05-2010, 05:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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The father of my baby called me last night for the time in about 8 months. He called me at 12:30am and pretty much threatened to send the police to my house and force me to do a DNA test. I know that isn't how it works,but it scared me anyway. I hung up and he called me back twice,at 1am and 3am and I just hung up.

 

Today I called him thinking he'd be nicer or something,I also wanted to see if he'd gotten the e-mail I sent,but he claims he didn't get it. He then threatened to take my baby away from me. I'm pretty sure he won't be able to,but that threat is still pretty scary for me.

 

So how do you all deal with the fear when your childs father makes threats,even if you know the threats are empty?

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#2 of 13 Old 12-05-2010, 06:57 PM
 
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When I was pregnant, my STBX did that to me. Called and told me he was filing for divorce, and intended to declare me an unfit mother due to medications and my medical conditions. He said his mother had agreed to take the baby, since he's in the Navy.

 

First thing I did was tell my lawyer, who advised me to gather a few supportive friends and ask if some of them would be willing to stand up in court for me if I needed them to. They were completely supportive. I talked to my neurologist and and therapist to get their support as well. They were also 100% behind me.

 

Then I started documenting everything rotten he said and did to me.

 

Also, when he said that to me on the phone, I just said, "Yeah, right. That's not going to happen. You don't even know what you're talking about." We were still in marriage counseling at that point, and he said the same things in front of the counselor (who also said he'd go to bat for me if necessary).

 

After a few weeks, he came back to get a few things from the house, and I brought it up to see what he would say. He said he had decided not to do that. No apology or anything.

 

Good luck, and try not to stress. It's most likely just the usual threats that they try when they want to feel like they're more powerful than you. Most of these guys that pull that kind of crap are too lazy and self-absorbed to actually want to be responsible for a child full-time.


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#3 of 13 Old 12-05-2010, 07:11 PM
 
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Hang in there mama. Make sure you DOCUMENT Every Little Thing- seriously. That has been the most imortant advice I can give, keep a detailed and precise track of everything having to do with his man.  Be safe.


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#4 of 13 Old 12-05-2010, 07:15 PM
 
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Read Why does he DO that?  By lundy Bancroft.  It will help you see through it, and help you react appropriately.  Honeslty though, I'd stop answering when he calls, make him leave messages.

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#5 of 13 Old 12-05-2010, 10:04 PM
 
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you know mama. sometimes there is no answer.

 

you just have to live through that threat. the more you live through it and no action happens the fear slowly dies away.

 

so the oft repeated cliche - time heals - is v. true.

 

i was scared out of my mind - had panic attacks at night... but i also had a baby to take care of - so i think the simple just day to day living kinda helped with the fear.

 

i was afraid because ex had all the right people in his friends group - lawyers, doctors, ped, psychologists, therapists... you name it he had it. all i had was me doing the work - researching and finding the right daycare, doctors, etc. he called CPS on me, tried to get my friends involved - but their basic line was she 'is a good mom'.

 

you know initially you think you have no power, no support. but then something gets you. and you stand up and fight back. you draw limits and boundaries and refuse to put up with any more shit. that's when the amazing miracle happen. you stand up politely but with full confidence and it all goes away. they stop. becasue they dont get  a reaction. however a point to be noted here - inherently ex is a good person inside, and an intelligent man with common sense. yet still after 6 years REALLY angry with me - because i drew the line after he asked for a divorce. i think. i dont really know.

 

when i reached my calmness i discovered it further infuriated ex. but then he too got over it, just coz it wasnt having any effect on me. the first 3 mother's day was the time ex would choose to pick the biggest fight.

 

takes a lot of time. it does happen - but the HOW - THAT is what you have to figure out.


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#6 of 13 Old 12-06-2010, 06:57 AM
 
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Don't answer his calls, is my first advice.  And don't call him.  Someone who harrasses and threatens you like that is not going to be nicer the next day; they're not nice people on any day. 

 

You should schedule a consultation with an attorney that does Family Law.  Your ex doesn't have a leg to stand on - absent parents don't pop up after 8 months and get a child by sending the police after the mother.  They go through the court process to gain visitation.  So yes, he's full of it, and too lazy (and doesn't care enough) to go through the court process - he figures it will be easier, cheaper and more fun to bully you into it.  This type of "man" is a dime a dozen.  Men who truly want a relationship with their child establish that through positive means, not by being ugly with their child's mother.  Don't fall for it, don't give it, and EMPOWER yourself by having the legal consultation so that you know what your legal rights are.  I cannot stress enough:  Don't engage with him.  It just adds fuel to the fire. 

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#7 of 13 Old 12-06-2010, 07:26 AM
 
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Good advice here. By law, unless you were married, you are considered the sole parent. If he is asking for a DNA test then I assume he isn't on the birth ceritificate. He has zero rights until he goes to court, establishes paternity and requests visitation. That will take months and it is expensive so if he is cheap and selfish then I'm willing to bet it is a bunch of false threats.Change your number and keep your emails that you send to him saved. You prove that you contact him, that is enough. By the sound of him don't even bother letting him see the baby until a court order is in place.

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#8 of 13 Old 12-06-2010, 09:07 AM
 
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My divorce was finalized in July. Custody was granted to me on May 31st. I *still* receive threatening emails and text.

 

I deal with it by reminding myself that I hold all the cards, and that it's very easy to send someone a bunch of b.s. emails while bored/drunk, but it's a lot harder to be a present and consistent parent.

 

Avani is right: this person has no legal rights until the courts grant them to him. You are perfectly within your rights to block his number and email address, and ignore. I would also advise you not to communicate with him further. This man is abusive and he will use any little bit of contact or information you provide during such contact against you.

 

Document EVERY call, text, email, with time and date, and a description. A pattern will soon emerge. You may even be able to obtain a restraining order for harassment.

 

In the meantime, call your telephone service provider and inquire about blocking a number. You don't have to deal with this crap.

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#9 of 13 Old 12-07-2010, 10:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm feeling better now,thank you for the advice. I think that when I heard the threat I was so focused on what he was saying and how I'd feel if he made good with it I forgot to think straight. I know that no judge would allow him to take him anywhere after all this time and there is no way he'd ever get sole custody and have it so I never see my child again.

 

I called legal aid and meet with them in a couple weeks. I talked to the police and explained all the details,but unless he has threatened to kill me or my baby they can do nothing. Or of he calls me and harasses me and I can prove it was him they can do something. He was calling from a private number though,so they said I can't do anything about the 3 hang up calls I got about 2 weeks ago that I am now sure was him.

 

Today I changed my number and it's my cell and not listed so hopefully he doesn't have a way to find it.

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#10 of 13 Old 12-16-2010, 06:23 PM
 
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Don't give credence to the threats.  It's just hot air.  My oldest daughter is 10.  Her father threatened all kinds of things when I was pregnant with her(after he left me).  And he DID file for visitation when she was born.  We went to court when she was 4 months old and I think he sorta ran out of steam then because he gave me sole legal and physical custody and all he got for visitation was 2 hours one day per week in my home with me present.  OOOOOOOOOOOH, SCCCAAAAARRRRRRYYYYYY!  lol  And he was very inconsistent for his visitations until she was 21 months old and dropped out of her life completely.  He's not seen her in 8 1/2 years now.  She doesn't remember him.  I speak to him every once in a while when we move since I always give him the new address(because I never want him to be able to say in court or to our child that he couldnt' find us and couldn't contact us) and he never once has asked how she was doing.  He doesn't even mention her name.  So for all those threats, he took basically nothing and didn't even want that.


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#11 of 13 Old 12-23-2010, 02:28 PM
 
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agreeing with the other posts of documenting and blocking!  I have x blocked on my cell phone, which for my carrier (at&t) means he can still call, but it goes straight to voice mail.  He can also text.  This definitely keeps threats *down*, but unfortunatly does not eliminate them... just gives him less steam, since he gets no immediate response from me (which is what the threats thrive on).  Document everything just in case he does take you to court, you can prove that it's actually *him* that's the crazy one!


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#12 of 13 Old 12-23-2010, 03:12 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I made notes about what he's done since I told him I was pregnant. I used to be very scared that he'd have a better chance of getting custody if he fought for it b/c I thought I had much less then he did,but I'm no longer scared of this. My son has everything that he needs with me and we have built and are still building a nice support system and circle of friends for ourselves. I have quite a few people to stand by in case we ever have to go to court and prove anything about me. This Christmas I'm just going to do as my lawyer told me to.... enjoy it!

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#13 of 13 Old 12-23-2010, 04:55 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Halfasianmomma View Post

My divorce was finalized in July. Custody was granted to me on May 31st. I *still* receive threatening emails and text.

 

I deal with it by reminding myself that I hold all the cards, and that it's very easy to send someone a bunch of b.s. emails while bored/drunk, but it's a lot harder to be a present and consistent parent.

 

Avani is right: this person has no legal rights until the courts grant them to him. You are perfectly within your rights to block his number and email address, and ignore. I would also advise you not to communicate with him further. This man is abusive and he will use any little bit of contact or information you provide during such contact against you.

 

Document EVERY call, text, email, with time and date, and a description. A pattern will soon emerge. You may even be able to obtain a restraining order for harassment.

 

In the meantime, call your telephone service provider and inquire about blocking a number. You don't have to deal with this crap.

 

This is exactly what I would say. Memee's advice about the day-to-care of your child and finding the calmness is also really what got me through. Once I decided not to let him have the power over me, it really changed the dynamic. He still tries to threaten, beg, wheedle, whatever, but I just don't respond. I keep records of it all, but I don't respond to the emotional things he says. It's all strictly business as it relates to our children -- decisions about school, medical care, progress, activities, their general well-being, etc. Nothing about me and him.
 

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