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<p>My 7 year old daughter, who lives with her father, is visiting for a week and told me her father AND soon-to-be step mother spank her. I have a feeling others in that household may spank her as well, but i don't want to ask my daughter too many questions for fear of leading her on. When my ex and I were together, we did not spank. Ever. We had discussed spanking as an extremely rare occurrence when she is smaller and is unable to understand consequences. </p>
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<p>How do I approach him diplomatically to ensure he understands that at 7, spanking isn't necessary as they can understand consequences and following rules? I worry that he has flown off the handle and hit her too hard and often. I also worry that he is allowing his future wife to do things that are inappropriate for her role. I never ever ever asked my current husband to discipline her in any capacity and hoped he would use the same judgement. It appears that is not the case. </p>
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<p>I am meeting him this weekend to drop-off my daughter and want to discuss it in his fiance's presence but worry it could cause a disagreement. </p>
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<p>As a side note, she recently had a bathroom accident because she was fearful of the toilet making noises and expressed that the possibility of it overflowing was enough to terrify her into wetting herself.  I am worried that the facilities at her current home are causing her concern.  Not to mention that her outer thigh had a large rather nasty looking burn on it and when I asked how it happened, my daughter couldn't tell me. I worry that the bruises on her butt and the wound on her leg are signs of abuse. </p>
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<p>Can you take her to a pediatrician or the police and have someone talk with her about the burn?  Then maybe file an emergency temporary custody hearing?  I'm so sorry for your daughter:(  It sounds like it's not a good situation where she is.  It's not a good sign that she's not allowed to tell you what happened. </p>
 

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<p>woah mama. this is huge. burn mark on the outer thigh? bruises on her bottom? OMG i would be taking her to the doctor, recording this and hopefully the doc would call CPS for you. </p>
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<p>this is beyond than just a spanking. this is pretty serious. </p>
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<p>gosh she is only 7. </p>
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<p>do you know if she just told her and there were no bruises on her body CPS would kinda ignore you. but that there is proof - everything changes. </p>
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<p>there. is. no. way. in. hell. i. would. be. able. to. send. my. dd. back. after. those. two. things. and. others. without. verifying. what's. going. on. </p>
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<p>if that was on dd let me assure u i would be on the phone to ask asking questions and vice versa. </p>
 
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<p>I don't think you should talk to them.  I think you should take her to the doc and contact CPS right away.  Make sure your house is clean and neat in case they investigate both homes, in some places that is routine.  If she goes back like that to them without you reporting it they may report it and say you are the one who did it, especially after you talk to them about it (a lady I went to school with told me her dd's ex did that to her).  I don't think you should give the benefit of the doubt here with so many cues pointing to abuse.</p>
 

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<p>That is horrible. There is no way I would let my child go back without clarifying what has happened. I hope you have gone to a ped to get an official to have a look at the injuries. Please!</p>
 

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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>meemee</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1288050/7-year-old-being-spanked-by-father-how-do-i-approach-discussing-alternatives-diplomatically#post_16146841"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>woah mama. this is huge. burn mark on the outer thigh? bruises on her bottom? OMG i would be taking her to the doctor, recording this and hopefully the doc would call CPS for you. </p>
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<p>this is beyond than just a spanking. this is pretty serious. </p>
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<p>gosh she is only 7. </p>
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<p>do you know if she just told her and there were no bruises on her body CPS would kinda ignore you. but that there is proof - everything changes. </p>
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<p>there. is. no. way. in. hell. i. would. be. able. to. send. my. dd. back. after. those. two. things. and. others. without. verifying. what's. going. on. </p>
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<p>if that was on dd let me assure u i would be on the phone to ask asking questions and vice versa. </p>
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<p>even without the burn mark, the fact that they are leaving bruises is enough.  spanking is not considered abuse, but leaving bruises IS. </p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
<p>UPDATE:</p>
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<p>I tried to call him and discuss this rationally but alas, all I got was screamed at. He jumped off the deep end and hung up on me. Well, his fiance called me. It seems she is the calmer head in that relationship as she could easily explain all the marks and bruises. Her brother(who lives with them) tickles them too hard and ends up giving them bruises. She has told him not to and he still does occasionally. I confirmed this with my daughter and casually told her that she can tell him "no, you are hurting me" and he has to respect that and stop. The mark on her leg was explained as a sort of spider bite or a fungus. They are no sure where it came from as she came home from school one day with it, complaining about her leg hurting. They showed it to my ex's fiance's mother who used to be a sort of nurse and they figured out what it may be but they haven't been able to get to the doctor yet. </p>
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<p>She assured me she only spanks when absolutely necessary and only when my daughter yells back, hits or does inappropriate touching(another issue I have to figure out). Apparently she has taken to asking other kids to touch her in her private places. The fiance thinks this may be from seeing inappropriate things around the house or having walked in on my ex and his fiance being intimate. Why they did it when she has no door, while my daughter is still awake is beyond me, but my ex has never had great judgement. </p>
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<p>So, I do feel a bit relieved to have discussed the marks and spanking with her caregiver. My ex is working and going to school so his fiance is really her main care provider. I cannot determine whether I have been fed a bunch of bologna or whether it's true but all I can do is ask and discuss problems. </p>
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<p>Thanks for all the advice.I really appreciate the help in determining the best course of action.</p>
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<p>Side note: I don't currently have her insurance card as my ex being the primary custodian is responsible for insurance and i have asked but have yet to receive an extra card. So taking her to the doctor would have been a huge financial issue as we couldn't pay out of pocket for it. I thought about calling CPS to their home to ensure everything was ok, but like previously stated, the bruises have healed and the mark was explained. So CPS wouldn't do anything. </p>
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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>BettinaAuSucre</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1288050/7-year-old-being-spanked-by-father-how-do-i-approach-discussing-alternatives-diplomatically#post_16147920"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br>
Side note: I don't currently have her insurance card as my ex being the primary custodian is responsible for insurance and i have asked but have yet to receive an extra card. So taking her to the doctor would have been a huge financial issue as we couldn't pay out of pocket for it. I thought about calling CPS to their home to ensure everything was ok, but like previously stated, the bruises have healed and the mark was explained. So CPS wouldn't do anything. 
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Her insurance can be verified through her social security number if i remember correctly.</p>
 

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<p>My kids and I get into some pretty serious tickle fests sometimes and no one's ever walked away bruised before... and the fiance's brother who can't keep his hands to himself?</p>
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<p>And getting spanked for inapropriate touching? I dunno, it's a red flag to me. Would you view that as "bad" behavior or would you be more concerned and try and figure out why that's going on? And her just casually saying she thinks maybe your dd has seen some inappropriate things happening around the house? I would be concerned.</p>
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<p>And I'd be pissed that they didn't take her to immediate care for the spider bite/fungus whatever on her leg if it was hurting her. And the school would need to be notified if that's where she got it from.</p>
 

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<p>It sounde like spanking is just the tip of the iceberg. Your daughter is not having her boundaries honored and is starting to explore not honoring others boundaries as well, which is a gigantic red flag. She definitely needs to be seeing a therapist IMO. Her brother could probably use it too if he is tickling hard enough to leave bruises and is not stopping when he's been told to. If you think your Ex and fiance can have a reasonably calm discussion about this, then that would be best. If not, then you need to call CPS and go that route. Tell them everything she said, including your daughters exposure to sexual relations. Another thing you can do is call the insurance company and request a duplicate card yourself. I'd tell them the truth, that you've requested a duplicate multiple times, that they won't give you one, and you need to take your child to the dr. If you can't take her to the doctor then you can always talk her to the ER where you don't have to pay out of pocket up front, and then STBX and the insurance company  can wrestle over the payment on that on. One way or another your daughter needs to get help.</p>
 

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<p>And remember, with the insurance thing, taking her to the emergency room, they'll ask who is financially responsible for the cost of the visit. That would be the ex. Since he won't give you a duplicate card, then he'll have to deal with that later on down the road. And maybe he'll finally cough one up.</p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
<p>I am going to have a serious sit-down talk with my daughter later today and tell her about respecting other's boundaries as well as insisting her own are respected. Now that you mention it, it sounds like my ex's fiance's brother may have some issues about boundaries. Apparently he speaks incredibly loud due to lack of hearing and the reason my daughter had a bathroom accident was due to overhearing him discussing septic tank problems in their home. </p>
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<p>How do I find out if the brother has been inappropriate with her without leading her on? </p>
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<p>I agree that the tickling was a flimsy excuse, but they were small bruises, like fingertips and it seemed logical to me at the time it could be made by tickling. </p>
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<p>I told my ex's fiance that they need to see a school counselor or therapist to discuss inappropriate behaviors and make sure the school is aware of them. I would hate for her to be suspended or punished at school because of this. I am extremely heart-broken that she is being exposed to these things. Another regret to add to my ever-increasing pile of guilt i have for not fighting harder for her.  </p>
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<p>I am so confused about what to do. </p>
 

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<p style="margin-top:0px;margin-right:0px;margin-bottom:0px;margin-left:0px;padding-top:0px;padding-right:0px;padding-bottom:2px;padding-left:0px;">Side note: I don't currently have her insurance card as my ex being the primary custodian is responsible for insurance and i have asked but have yet to receive an extra card. So taking her to the doctor would have been a huge financial issue as we couldn't pay out of pocket for it.</p>
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<p>This would not stop me if I felt my child was being mistreated. </p>
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<p>I would still get that fungus checked out by someone other than a "sort of nurse".  That is not something that should wait and I am surprised that anybody with even remote medical experience would think waiting was ok. Sounds like you have a relationship with the fiance- just call and get the insurance number.  It can easily be looked up/verified. </p>
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<p>Do you have the ability to take care of your child if CPS did get involved? Sure the bruises have healed but your daughter is still be spanked, is living in an explosive household with a man with what sounds to be anger management  issues and has to deal with "questionable facilities"? All you have is this woman's word about a brother who "tickles too hard" and who also stated your daughter deserves to be spanked when she is "bad" and has also accused her of <em>inappropriate touching</em> ?? with no further explanation?? This is all grounds for CPS to at least to home check and start a file.</p>
 
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<p style="margin-top:0px;margin-right:0px;margin-bottom:0px;margin-left:0px;padding-top:0px;padding-right:0px;padding-bottom:2px;padding-left:0px;"><strong>I am going to have a serious sit-down talk with my daughter later today and tell her about respecting other's boundaries as well as insisting her own are respected.</strong> Now that you mention it, it sounds like my ex's fiance's brother may have some issues about boundaries. Apparently he speaks incredibly loud due to lack of hearing and the reason my daughter had a bathroom accident was due to overhearing him discussing septic tank problems in their home. </p>
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<p>She is only 7 years old, a child.  It is not her responsibility alone. While it is important that she understand her respecting boundaries and protecting her own it is not something that is learned by a single "serious sit down talk". It is a start but there is so much more involved. This behavior needs to be modelled everyday day in real life. She needs to see what is appropriate and have someone be able to correct behavior as it occurs. It takes practice and repetition and it does not sound like she is getting that in primary living space.</p>
 
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<p>these are all huge red flags as is the brother with boundary issues.  I think CPS and a doctor visit (worth every penny even if you have to borrow or use a credit card) are absolutely necessary.  And you should be taking pictures of these bruises.</p>
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
<p>I have taken pictures of the mark on her thigh. I have researched where to go to discuss potential child abuse. And I completely agree that one talk will not be enough. I just wanted to open the lines of communication again, like I had in the past. I wanted to cover that with her before something happened and discussed boundaries before in casual conversation and i just wanted to reassure her that she is not in trouble and that she can talk to me anytime. I don't know whether it sunk in but all I can do is hope that it did and model that behavior while she is with me. </p>
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<p>I know this is far from over. When I asked her about the incident of inappropriate touching with another child in the household, she couldn't remember it. So, I am still not 100% sure what exactly happened other than the fiance's story that my daughter asked a boy to touch her inappropriate places. She was spanked for it and the boy got a bit worse, from what I am told. </p>
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<p>Now, this is all just hearsay at this point because she has no actual bruises on her now, as the small ones healed entirely before I could get a picture. All I have learned is from word of mouth from my ex's fiance. Will CPS really investigate if I don't know all of the information and only know a bit from a conversation? For instance, I have no dates, locations, names of those involved nor what exactly happened. I think CPS would laugh in my face if I tried to file an abuse complaint.</p>
 

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<p>i would be extremely concerned about some guy "tickling" her BUM hard enough to leave bruises (shouldn't be touching her there in any way, but tickling and bruising are both freaking disturbing) combined with her acting out sexually.  i would take her to a doctor immediately.  if the insurance thing is an issue, i would request a meeting with her school counselor or i would call child welfare / CPS.  you don't have to call with abuse allegations, just tell them everything your dd and the step-mom told you.</p>
 

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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>BettinaAuSucre</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1288050/7-year-old-being-spanked-by-father-how-do-i-approach-discussing-alternatives-diplomatically#post_16148289"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>I have taken pictures of the mark on her thigh. I have researched where to go to discuss potential child abuse. And I completely agree that one talk will not be enough. I just wanted to open the lines of communication again, like I had in the past. I wanted to cover that with her before something happened and discussed boundaries before in casual conversation and i just wanted to reassure her that she is not in trouble and that she can talk to me anytime. I don't know whether it sunk in but all I can do is hope that it did and model that behavior while she is with me. </p>
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<p>I know this is far from over. When I asked her about the incident of inappropriate touching with another child in the household, she couldn't remember it. So, I am still not 100% sure what exactly happened other than the fiance's story that my daughter asked a boy to touch her inappropriate places. She was spanked for it and the boy got a bit worse, from what I am told. </p>
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<p><strong>Now, this is all just hearsay at this point because she has no actual bruises on her now, as the small ones healed entirely before I could get a picture. All I have learned is from word of mouth from my ex's fiance. Will CPS really investigate if I don't know all of the information and only know a bit from a conversation? For instance, I have no dates, locations, names of those involved nor what exactly happened. I think CPS would laugh in my face if I tried to file an abuse complaint.</strong></p>
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<p>Isn't it worth being "laughed at"?? Which I highly doubt would happen. Just calmly tell them what you know, what the fiance told you and what your daughter has told you as well. You want to help *prevent* anything happening to her.  Maybe they will open a file, maybe they will do a home visit.  You wont know if you do nothing.</p>
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<p>You already feel guilty about "not fighting harder for her". Don't wait until its too late. Don't wait until the damage has already been done and then regret not acting earlier.<br>
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<p>Yes, exactly. Her uncle is leaving bruises on her butt when tickling her?  She's touching people and asking to be touched innapropriately?  They only requested that the uncle "not tickle her so hard"???  This is crazy.</p>
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<p>Do not leave her alone with your husband...at all.  This is a dangerous situation for him right now.  They could say that she exhibits this behaviour after being around the stepdad....cover his ass.</p>
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<p>Is there ANY way you could meet with a lawyer.  Pay little by little to file an emergency custody hearing?  Get an evening job and tag-team parent with your husband (even a grocery store or pharmacy or hospital receptionist, clean houses).  My father did this with me when it came out that I was being abused at home.  He filed an emergency hearing and got temp. custody.  He took me to the police station and got cps involved.  I'm not sure how that worked out with jurisdiction since we were in separate states, but it did work out.  I'm thinking it was in the state where I'd lived with my  mother though.</p>
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<p>It sounds to me like you are scared of your ex and grateful for any consideration that him or his wife are willing to give you.   You've got to get some confidence and fast...from somewhere.  Fake it if you have to.  It seems like you're really beaten down and not able to think outside this box.</p>
 
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