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#1 of 27 Old 03-30-2009, 05:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I will try to keep this as brief as possible.

#1, I can't talk to DP about DSD or his ex at all anymore... it makes me livid! I told him a while back that his decisions are his when it comes to his daughter, but I did not want to talk to him about it anymore... because the fact is, it doesn't matter what I say.

So, that being said...

DSD is a VERY naughty little girl, she will be 7 this Thursday. She gets in sooooo much trouble when she is at her mom's house. (ex: fighting in school, screaming and hitting her mom, chopped a boys finger off, stealing money from classmates ). DP's ex was just about done and ready to hand her over to us (I know that sounds terrible), but then she found out that her disability checks would get lowered, so the security of a well ballanced home that DSD would get at our house was null and void, because she doesn't want to work! (and I'm not being mean, she can work). Ok, so I have concerns about what goes on at her mom's house, but I have no control over it, sooo... I'm over it.

Well, she comes and stays with us only one or two weekends a month, and for the most part she is well behaved for us (or at least compared to how she behaves at her mother's home). I'm always worried about her teaching and having influences over my DD's, so I watch her extra carefully. She has been caught talking about very explicit sexual and violent things This weekend she was over, and I left early Saturday afternoon to have a day with one of my girlfriends, and was out late. The next day DP informed me that DSD and DD1 torn down the privacy fence in the back yard!!! : How? Ugh, well they didn't tear it down, they broke the whole back fence into pieces and piled them in the middle of the yard... in case, well, we go camping and need campfire wood, ya know?!?! I know that DD1 probably watched most of the time, she is significantly smaller than DSD.

Well, now DD1 is saying she didn't do it blah blah blah, but she was there and watched regaurdless, so she is grounded for a week. My mom just made the comment "well, ya know DSD isn't going to be grounded at her mom's house!"
and I am livid!!! That is not my child and I have no say about her punishment at her mom's house... I know at my house she wasn't allowed to get off her bed the entire next day till she went home! I am trying to explain to DD1 not to follow DSD's lead, but she is so impressionable DP probably should have kept a better eye on them, maybe I shoulda stayed home... or maybe someone should do the right thing with DSD!!! I'm so frustrated, and being that I've backed out of any decisions made with DSD, there's just not much I can do... please, anyone, help!!!

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#2 of 27 Old 03-30-2009, 05:46 PM
 
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Sorry, i couldn't get past the she chopped a boys finger off? And this girl isn't in therapy with a court appointed guardian do decide what the best placement is for her and everyone isn't working together with professionals to get some serious behavior modification down?

Frankly I would be SCARED, not angry, but SCARED about what this child is doing/can do and i would tell my husband to get his butt in gear and get some professionals on the case to help decide what needs to be done with this child or I would be gone when the child was visiting her father.
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#3 of 27 Old 03-30-2009, 06:08 PM
 
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Sorry, i couldn't get past the she chopped a boys finger off? And this girl isn't in therapy with a court appointed guardian do decide what the best placement is for her and everyone isn't working together with professionals to get some serious behavior modification down?
I have to agree - that one point is what stunned me. Has this little girl been in any kind of therapy at all - her behavior is NOT normal for a 7 year old.
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#4 of 27 Old 03-30-2009, 06:17 PM
 
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Originally Posted by EarthMommy80 View Post
I will try to keep this as brief as possible.

#1, I can't talk to DP about DSD or his ex at all anymore... it makes me livid! I told him a while back that his decisions are his when it comes to his daughter, but I did not want to talk to him about it anymore... because the fact is, it doesn't matter what I say.


So, that being said...

DSD is a VERY naughty little girl, she will be 7 this Thursday. She gets in sooooo much trouble when she is at her mom's house. (ex: fighting in school, screaming and hitting her mom, chopped a boys finger off, stealing money from classmates ). DP's ex was just about done and ready to hand her over to us (I know that sounds terrible), but then she found out that her disability checks would get lowered, so the security of a well ballanced home that DSD would get at our house was null and void, because she doesn't want to work! (and I'm not being mean, she can work). Ok, so I have concerns about what goes on at her mom's house, but I have no control over it, sooo... I'm over it.

Well, she comes and stays with us only one or two weekends a month, and for the most part she is well behaved for us (or at least compared to how she behaves at her mother's home). I'm always worried about her teaching and having influences over my DD's, so I watch her extra carefully. She has been caught talking about very explicit sexual and violent things This weekend she was over, and I left early Saturday afternoon to have a day with one of my girlfriends, and was out late. The next day DP informed me that DSD and DD1 torn down the privacy fence in the back yard!!! : How? Ugh, well they didn't tear it down, they broke the whole back fence into pieces and piled them in the middle of the yard... in case, well, we go camping and need campfire wood, ya know?!?! I know that DD1 probably watched most of the time, she is significantly smaller than DSD.

Well, now DD1 is saying she didn't do it blah blah blah, but she was there and watched regaurdless, so she is grounded for a week. My mom just made the comment "well, ya know DSD isn't going to be grounded at her mom's house!"
and I am livid!!! That is not my child and I have no say about her punishment at her mom's house... I know at my house she wasn't allowed to get off her bed the entire next day till she went home! I am trying to explain to DD1 not to follow DSD's lead, but she is so impressionable DP probably should have kept a better eye on them, maybe I shoulda stayed home... or maybe someone should do the right thing with DSD!!! I'm so frustrated, and being that I've backed out of any decisions made with DSD, there's just not much I can do... please, anyone, help!!!

If this child's father and mother did not get on the same page about getting this child into therapy ASAP, I would be making some plans to do WHATEVER it took to keep my children safe. As the parent to other children who are in contact with your step daughter, you really can't afford to be hands off and have no say.
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#5 of 27 Old 03-30-2009, 06:24 PM
 
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Where was dad while the fence was being torn down? Why isn't this kis in therapy, and WHY is she given the label or naughty? Why is sitting in bed all day acceptable punishment? I think both households need to look into parenting classes, honestly. I'm not being mean, but it sounds like none of you (mom, step mom, dad) have a clue how to help this kid. It's time to stop trying to fix her yourself and get help.

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#6 of 27 Old 03-30-2009, 06:37 PM
 
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She chopped a boy's finger offf!!!!?
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#7 of 27 Old 03-30-2009, 06:46 PM
 
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Add me into the club that is focusing on your DSD chopping a boy's finger off. WTH is being done for this child? No offense, I am just flabbergasted.

:~*Barbara*~ 25, DGF to an awesome man (25) and always a step-mom to A (8)
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#8 of 27 Old 03-30-2009, 06:59 PM
 
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"As the parent to other children who are in contact with your step daughter, you really can't afford to be hands off and have no say."

Yup. I can totally see why you backed out of the fray when it became clear that your dh was not going to do anything productive with your input, but if you are truly worried about the influence on YOUR kid, then you need to wade back in.

If the mom has considered giving her up to you once, then backed off for financial reasons, she may well be more easily influenced by social-worker-threats than somebody who is hanging on to their child for other reasons. If you are willing to wind up with this kid in your home, I think the time may have come to raise a red flag with the school counselor or whoever you think is most likely to look into it.

If you're NOT willing to have this kid in your home, I think visitation in your home is probably not a good idea. Her dad can visit her in a neutral location. If you are not going to be involved in her upbringing, then she should not be involved in your home life where there are other kids to consider.
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#9 of 27 Old 03-30-2009, 07:10 PM
 
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First of all, you sound like you are at the end of your rope. *hugs*
Second of all, your post bothered me a lot. A lot. A lot. And I identify quite a bit with MamaDragon's response.

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Originally Posted by Mama Dragon View Post
Where was dad while the fence was being torn down?
Great question. If the back of the fence is strong, and takes deliberate breaking/pulling apart, then I can't imagine how a parent could be ignorant of what is going on in their own backyard. Dad bears some responsibility here.

At that age, if I saw a fence was somewhat damaged, I could see myself trying "to be helpful", and piling up the wood. Was it maliciously done? Does she understand she caused trouble? Does she feel bad about it? Or is she defiant about the whole thing?

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Why isn't this kis in therapy, and WHY is she given the label or naughty?
If a seven year old has no problem chopping off a finger of another child, and speaks of violent sexual things, I am amazed that your partner/her mother/someone! does not insist on therapy and gets to the root of all of this.

I also hope no one calls her naughty...

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Why is sitting in bed all day acceptable punishment?
I completely agree that this is inappropriate, illogical consequence. It would be torturous for me as an adult to stay in my bed for such an extended amount of time, and I can't imagine putting a seven year old through it, no matter what they have done. There are certainly better ways to handle discipline without being permissive? And there would be no surprise for acting up after such a consequence, imho.

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#10 of 27 Old 03-30-2009, 07:19 PM
 
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If you're NOT willing to have this kid in your home, I think visitation in your home is probably not a good idea. Her dad can visit her in a neutral location. If you are not going to be involved in her upbringing, then she should not be involved in your home life where there are other kids to consider.
I see where you are coming from, but here is what I think...

If my child misbehaves, I can't give up on them, and just say "okay, I don't want you here any more, go over there." I'm the parent, I'm the one that supposed to pull it together and try everything possible to help the kid. 7 y.o. is a bit too early to give up on. It's not quite OP's job, but it is her partner's, and as partners, the two of them have to have a very big discussion.

How telling a child who has enough problems as it is that they are not wanted in this house is going to help her or your family?

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#11 of 27 Old 03-30-2009, 07:26 PM
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OP, can you clarify what you mean by cutting another child's finger off? I hope this is a bit of an exaggeration.

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I see where you are coming from, but here is what I think...

If my child misbehaves, I can't give up on them, and just say "okay, I don't want you here any more, go over there." I'm the parent, I'm the one that supposed to pull it together and try everything possible to help the kid. 7 y.o. is a bit too early to give up on. It's not quite OP's job, but it is her partner's, and as partners, the two of them have to have a very big discussion.

How telling a child who has enough problems as it is that they are not wanted in this house is going to help her or your family?
: I agree with all of this.
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#12 of 27 Old 03-30-2009, 07:49 PM
 
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I see where you are coming from, but here is what I think...

If my child misbehaves, I can't give up on them, and just say "okay, I don't want you here any more, go over there." I'm the parent, I'm the one that supposed to pull it together and try everything possible to help the kid. 7 y.o. is a bit too early to give up on. It's not quite OP's job, but it is her partner's, and as partners, the two of them have to have a very big discussion.

How telling a child who has enough problems as it is that they are not wanted in this house is going to help her or your family?

I completely agree with this, that the father should not give up on his child, but just from the discription, and me personally working with emotionally disturbed kids, i don't know that i would want the younger kids around this child if she isn't in some kind of intensive therapy and with eyes on her at all minutes.

I did respite care basically for a friend who's son at 7 WAS extremely dangerous, to the point that other children could not and should not be around him. He was in therapy and the Dr.'s also agreed that it was deterimental to other kids. The chopping off of a childs finger makes me think, without knowing the rest of the story, that it might be best for the step mother to possibly leave while the child is with dad. But again, we don't know the WHOLE story, just enough scary stuff.
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#13 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 10:13 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I come here for help and support, and instead feel attacked

I love this child!!! I have been in her life since she was 6 months old! I want her to get better! I'm not even angry at her for anything she does!!! I'm angry at her mother and my DP for being so stupid and irrisponsible!
I've been told she's in counceling... I've been told she has a slight case of psychosis, but I've been told a million things. I am not her parent, and I have no say in any treatments she will or will not get. Her mother is a liar, and her father is lazy. I am the one who takes care of her at my home... I left for one evening and that is what I came home to!!!

Yeah, she chopped a boys finger off... she slammed a mailbox on his hand and cut it right off... while in her mothers care. All those things are going on while in her care. I'm not going to give up on her, she is like one of my own... and I'm feeling attacked!!!???

And to the person who said grounding her to her room wasn't proper punishment... what is? I don't spank, she won't sit in a corner.... and yes, of course I had a talk with her...
so, what would you suggest?

Ya know what... whatever... I'm sitting here crying at work all because I don't know what to do, and I'm being treated like I am the one that did something wrong!!!

I'M NOT HER PARENT!!!! WHAT I SUGGEST AND SAY DOES NOT MAKE A DIFFERENCE!!!

So, maybe I'll take my kids and leave, and they can loose thier sister and dad over all this... sound liek a plan?!

LeeAnn )O( Earth mama treehugger.gif and mother to DD Leela (9), DSD Ari (9), DD Zen (7), DS Gabrael Riot (4!)
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#14 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 10:46 AM
 
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Clearly you are frustrated and overwhelmed, but I think people had a lot of useful input for you to consider. Have you chosen not to have input, or has that been thrust upon you? If it's a matter of choice, you can choose differently, if it's a matter or you not being allowed a voice, I'd seriously rethink parenting with a man like that, since you can't adequately ensure the safety of your children.

I think I'd have a major heart to heart with my spouse over an issue like this, ultimately though, you have to act in the best interests of your children. What else could have happened in the unsupervised time they had to destroy the fence that wouldn't have been as easily repaired?
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#15 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 10:49 AM
 
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I come here for help and support, and instead feel attacked

I love this child!!! I have been in her life since she was 6 months old! I want her to get better! I'm not even angry at her for anything she does!!! I'm angry at her mother and my DP for being so stupid and irrisponsible!
I've been told she's in counceling... I've been told she has a slight case of psychosis, but I've been told a million things. I am not her parent, and I have no say in any treatments she will or will not get. Her mother is a liar, and her father is lazy. I am the one who takes care of her at my home... I left for one evening and that is what I came home to!!!

Yeah, she chopped a boys finger off... she slammed a mailbox on his hand and cut it right off... while in her mothers care. All those things are going on while in her care. I'm not going to give up on her, she is like one of my own... and I'm feeling attacked!!!???

And to the person who said grounding her to her room wasn't proper punishment... what is? I don't spank, she won't sit in a corner.... and yes, of course I had a talk with her...
so, what would you suggest?

Ya know what... whatever... I'm sitting here crying at work all because I don't know what to do, and I'm being treated like I am the one that did something wrong!!!

I'M NOT HER PARENT!!!! WHAT I SUGGEST AND SAY DOES NOT MAKE A DIFFERENCE!!!

So, maybe I'll take my kids and leave, and they can loose thier sister and dad over all this... sound liek a plan?!
I see you care for her. My gut is telling me that someone is hurting this little girl. You may be the only one that cares to help her. Keep your eyes open and find someone you can trust who you can talk with about this situation. She needs you right now and what you say to her makes a HUGE difference.

She is lucky to have you.
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#16 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 11:21 AM
 
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Honestly, I was not attacking you at all, infact quite the oppesite, I am in SHOCK her parents haven't done more to ensure that she is being taken care of. However, and please understand i am coming from a place of experience with ED kids (emotionally distrubed) and this is sounding like a situation, from what you are explaining that would cause me great fear for the health and safety of my younger kids.

I think you are trying your best, but in a situation like this, I think the best is professional help.

If you can't get the girl into a therapist, I would, personally, give her father the ultimatum, either you get your head out of your butt and help your daughter, or I will not allow the other kids aorund her and I will go to a friends house while she is in your care.

This isn't about you not loving her at all, and that is very clear you DO love her, but could you live with yourself if she hurt someone else or herself when there IS help out there?

If her father wont do anything, frankly I would consider calling CPS. Not that I am ever one to easily suggest that, but someone needs to put this girl FIRST and get her the help she needs, or her life will be ruined. Part of loving someone is knowing when you have to use some tough love and help them even if it emotionally hurts you.

I hope you can reread everything that everyone wrote and read it with eyes that know everyone is concerned, NOT condemning you. But rather shock and fear and total support for you, the person who is in a helpless position, but really, I think your angry needs to be channelled into getting this girl help. You might not be able to take her to the Dr. yourself, but you can push the envelope.

I will say though, if my husband refused to have his son get the help he needs. (my step son is autistic, has adhd and gets very violent at times) I wouldn't be with that man. I wouldn't' trust that he could be the man of the house and ensure all of our safety and happiness if he refused to accept that he needed to help his son.
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#17 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 11:48 AM
 
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I'm sorry you felt attacked and not supported, I'm certain everyone here understands how difficult it is for you. I'm sorry I got focused on the chopped finger reference it was just so disturbing.
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#18 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 12:02 PM
 
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Wow! What a tough situation.

I can empathize with caring about a child, yet having no final say in how she is being raised. It makes things really difficult.

Obviously, her father needs to step up and be a better parent. I am assuming that he is the father of your children as well? Is he this uninvolved with them?

WRT the money factor and your DSD's mom letting her live with you, cow much would her SS go down? I don't know what your financial situation is, but if it is a matter of a hundred bucks a month, could you have the CS order modified? I know that it is extremely unfair to pay more to the other parent and be more financially responsible for supporting the child, but it might be worth it in the long run. Or you could spend the money on a lawyer. But if the child's father isn't interested in raising her, I don't know how much good it will do. It sounds like this poor girl has two parents that couldn't give a care. No wonder she is having problems.

As for the fence, I am a believer in logical consequences whenever possible. The kids tear down the fence, then it needs to be put back up. Now, granted, an adult has to do most of the work there, but the child could help by handing me nails, fetching wood, etc. As long as I was working on that fence, they would be there too. Even though it would be boring. Also, I most likely wouldn't let the kids play unsupervised anymore until they had demonstrated that they can do so without destroying property. Makes life tough for you, but so does spending a day mending a fence. In all honestly, it sounds like this girl could benefit from spending some time with a caring adult. Fixing the fence together could help with that as well.

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#19 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 12:06 PM
 
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I think Phrogger said it very well. Truly, no one here is condemning you! Your concern for this little girl's well being is obvious, as is your frustration with being unable to help her. Please don't continue to think we are attacking you - we can only imagine how hard that position must be.

In addition to the wise advice already offered may I suggest you consider finding a counselor for yourself? You sound so overwhelmed and frightened for this child, and I think a counselor could help you discover what tools are at your disposal for helping her and getting her father's butt in gear. S/He would also be a good sounding board for you so you could know you are NOT making too big a deal of things and she really DOES need help. S/He may even know of more resources than we do that could help her in this situation.

Please know that the posters here really do wish you the best and want to offer whatever support we can from the other side of your computer moniter. :

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#20 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 12:08 PM
 
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I'm so sorry. Looks like Bio-mom, bio-dad, and dsd need therapy badly.

It is frustrating to hear people on this board jump and tell you that you have to be responsible, you are the only one she has, etc (which I agree with and i think you do also) but then in other threads where we terrible step-parents want to have some say in schedules, or other things with our step-kids, that affect our family life we get the "stay out of it, your a legal stranger and have no right to have input in the kid's life"

(((hugs)))
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#21 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 12:33 PM
 
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I think you and your dh needs theropy. This might be the trigger to get her help and to push things.

I would insist he goes. I would also not leave my bio-kids at the house with out me being their with her. I would let my dh understand why. You can't do much for her. He has to do it. You are going to protect the kids you can until he does his job. Leave with your kids as much as you can.

I think your dd should be ungrounded but very aware they are doing some fence building/painting. They took it down together they can put it up together. No fun day at dad's house.

I would also look into calling social services on bio-mom. Leave your house incidents out...the violent and sexual acts leave in she could say these things to any other child.
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#22 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 01:39 PM
 
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You aren't being attacked, but you have to do something. Either directly or cause her parents to do something. Any adult can be a positive influence in any child's life. If you can't speak to her directly to make the difference, force her father's hand. Leave. Call CPS.

A much better punishment for a 7 year old is chores, losing TV or other favorited games, repairing the damage, that kind of thing. Inactivity and keeping her closed off from the rest of the family as a punishment just breeds resentment and more "bad" behavior.

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#23 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 01:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I apologize for becoming so defensive. I guess you are all right, and we could all use some therapy. More has been added to the situation, and without telling everything right now, I will say that CPS has been called on bio-mom, and they even spoke with my DP today. I'm not sure where it's going from here at this point... and really I am going to look for a support group to help me with this. You all made very valid points, and I will be taking so much of the advice and applying it. I'm sooooo stressed out, and pretty much just a mess at this point (and not about the fence lol).

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#24 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 02:12 PM
 
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I apologize for becoming so defensive. I guess you are all right, and we could all use some therapy. More has been added to the situation, and without telling everything right now, I will say that CPS has been called on bio-mom, and they even spoke with my DP today. I'm not sure where it's going from here at this point... and really I am going to look for a support group to help me with this. You all made very valid points, and I will be taking so much of the advice and applying it. I'm sooooo stressed out, and pretty much just a mess at this point (and not about the fence lol).
I can completely understand the frustration, and like I said, this is what I do, working with special needs and emotionally disturbed kids so if there is anything I can do to help, even if it is just to be an ear, I am here to listen. You have the strength to get through this and do what you have to do, we ALL do, sometimes we just need a little push in the right direction, even if it isn't always what we want to hear, sometimes we just HAVE to hear it.

And on the bright side, there is help out there. My SIL has done of lot of what you described and she is someone who at a young age scared even her Dr.'s, but with a lot of help and therapy and the right mix of medication, she is living a somewhat normal life, is self sufficent and not a danger to herself or others. It is a hard road, but you can make a difference in this childs life, but you and your other kids have to be protected too.
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#25 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 03:06 PM
 
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My daughter's dad was right up there with the scary-kid behavior you described (he tabbed someone when he was quite young, even) and was generally awful. My personal feelings asde (we are not together, he is not par of our daughter's life) he's a functional adul who provides for hmslf and hasn't gone to prison. Even kids in huge trouble when they are small can become decen and functional adults. Wth people who truly care for them, they can surpass our wildest hopes.
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#26 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 05:07 PM
 
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So, maybe I'll take my kids and leave, and they can loose thier sister and dad over all this... sound liek a plan?!
honestly?

I would.

I couldn't imagine trying to raise my children in the midst of your partner and his ex's breakdown in parenting.

They seem to have made it clear that you aren't evolved in your DSDs parenting. Which is sad, it sounds like the NEED an adult in the mix.

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#27 of 27 Old 03-31-2009, 05:25 PM
 
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I am glad that CPS has been called. Now an adult who is NOT you and ultimately DOES have the ability to assert control over the situation will hopefully become involved.

If you are willing to give your dsd a home if they take her away from her mother, I think that's awesome - but it's ONLY going to work if your dh gives you a coparenting role and makes that clear to all concerned parties.

This is not the first time that I've heard of a dh who is a decent parent to the kids in his current family (which I assume he is, or you would not be with him), but just completely off-the-charts irresponsible when it comes to the child/ren he had with a former wife/girlfriend. I don't get it, but it's certainly not a rare scenario.
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