Me for everything. There has been a few instances where I had to get the police involved because my son was in his arms and was out of control. He has packed his things and moved twice since he saw my son in 2009. But unfortunately he always comes back. He has never had his own place to live, he is 27 and can not hold a job for longer than a couple months. He currently got his car impounded and liscence taken away (for reasons I am unsure of at this point) he came back from out of state last October. I allowed him to see our son every other weekend, supervised at my house. Since October he has missed almost 50% of his visits. He hasn't seen our son now for 7 weeks and my son is heartbroken. My son will not talk to him on the phone and my sons dad blames me for it all. Says it's my fault and I am keeping him from him and I should be more supportive of their relationship and I am screwing up my sons life and one day my son will hate me because he will tell him 'the truth' that I kept him from his dad. Which is entirely not true at all. This wednesday we go to court since he is trying to get me for contempt for the third time (all has been dropped) I just cant take it anymore.. I don't know what to do and I at a complete loss. I feel so terrible for my son and I know how important it is to have his dad in his life, but at the same time his dad isn't a healthy person or in a stable situation at all. I can't go back to court to change the parenting plan or fight for him to go away because I have to work and I can't take a day off work since for one my money is all that supports my son and I, and I am 3 months pregnant and my leave time of 12 days is my only paid maternity leave. What do I do?!?! How do I help my son?! How do I help myself?! My poor son is so upset and distraught and he's starting to shut down, he won't talk about how he feels about his dad and I just don't know what to do anymore. All I want is for my son to be happy and have an amazing, care free child hood and I feel that I am just failing him. All I've ever wanted was for my kids to have a better childhood than I ever did. What can I do?!
I have no answers for you, but can tell this is really a hard time, so wanted to send you a hug...
Mom to two terrific kiddos, affirming every day that the Universe is unfolding as it should and all is well...
Breathe. Step one: start looking for counseling for your son. There should be free counseling services in your area, from Medicaid (may be a waiting list) or Catholic Social Services. There are play therapists that can start helping him now, and then he will be used to going later.
Step two: get a recording app for your phone, and record his rants and start a log of his abusive behavior, and the times he misses his parenting, and the times you have had the police called. Get the reports from the police about the incidents. It sounds to me like you need a restraining order, so you will need this log to help get one.
Step three: call legal aid and get on their waiting list for counsel.
Step four: go to the health food store and get some Rescue Remedy. It is safe to take during pregnancy, and it will help with your stress!
It may be better for your son in the long run not to have a father who is emotionally abusive. There is a book by Lundy Bancroft called When Dad Hurts Mom: Helping your Children Heal the Wounds of Witnessing Abuse. It may help you help him. Keep looking for another job, always. Do you live anywhere near your parents or other family who would let you live with them?
Totally what provocativa wrote. And I can't recommend that book enough, 'When Dad Hurts Mom'. I imagine you will find it extremely useful. I downloaded the Kindle app on my phone and purchased the kindle version of the book on Amazon.
I think you should contact your local domestic violence shelter and/or crisis line. I know you are not living with him, but they will most likely be able to either offer you some counselling and advice. It's definitely worth calling and trying. They could at least refer you to someone better equipped to deal with your type of situation.
Also, you do not need to take any of his phone calls. Establish that boundary for yourself. Text him and tell him that from now on you will only communicate via text or email. I know that with my X, every phone call spun me into knots with massive blows to my self-confidence. Now that we are not talking for the most part, it makes a world of a difference. none of it is your fault. Don't believe anything he says.
Is your son in school yet? If so, can you get him connected with the school counsellor?
Please let us know how you are doing. I'm thinking of you.
You are allowed to enforce boundaries as well so that you limit your ongoing abuse from him. For example you can inform him all communication will be through e-mail and texting so you don't have to listen to his ranting. That way you have a record and can only respond to what pertains to your ds. You can also set up supervised visitation out of your house in a neutral place like a park.
Like the PPs mention also be sure to keep evidence of these interactions. If you decide to go back to court it will be helpful to both show his true colors as well as document you are not withholding you ds from him.
Set and enforce boundaries. The only contact that you should be having with your ex is in regards to your kid. Anything else is not to be listened to.
And when your ex calls, calmly state the following:
If you are calling to discuss the well-being of our child and when you can next see him, then we can continue this conversation. Once you start yelling and blaming me for anything, the conversation ends.
And then follow through when he does start yelling and calling you names by hanging up. If he is doing this in front of your kid when he is visiting, you need to get a third party to supervise.
In the meantime, given that his father isn't a good male role model, do you have a male family member who can step in and spend some time with your son?