Note: Please bear in mind that whilst this topic does canvass opinions, it is not a fight club. You may disagree with other posters but we do ask you please to stick to our Talk Guidelines and to be civil. We don't allow personal attacks or troll-hunting. Do please report any. Thanks, MNHQ.

to think that my daughter's friend is not being looked after properly?

(193 Posts)
poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 20:11:45

Her mum's at work most of the time and her dad is unemployed with a drink problem. The parents are not together but live together still. One day I rang at 930 inviting her out. Went to pick her up at 1130 & she wasn't ready cos her dad had fallen back asleep. So she was basically unsupervised. My daughter went there for tea a couple of weeks ago & she said they got KFC (ugh) on the way home & then fell asleep for the whole time my daughter was there. Needless to say she's not going there again. Pretty disgusted especially as I so often take his daughter out to save her from a dull day with him. She's got chapped lips, isn't fed very healthy food and dressed in tatty dirty clothes. I'm not snobby but I do think being regularly hungover or drunk in charge of a 7 y.o. is unacceptable.

Sirzy Sat 11-May-13 20:14:09

I think judging them for buying a KFC is wrong but other than that YANBU to be worried.

Phone SS and report your concerns, let them decide what needs doing to help them.

Arisbottle Sat 11-May-13 20:14:33

The father being an alcoholic is an issue, mother going to work and a KFC is not an issue.

Well, from what you said, it's not so much an AIBU as you asking if there is anything you can or should do to help? Do you believe the child is suffering from serious neglect?

ReluctantlyBeingYoniMassaged Sat 11-May-13 20:15:51

I sometimes have a snooze and leave ds to play. He's six.

rubyslippers Sat 11-May-13 20:15:56

is school aware??

may be a good place to start?

the alcoholic father is an issue but not the working mum or KFC

kotinka Sat 11-May-13 20:16:04


NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Sat 11-May-13 20:16:24

Hand some of your DDs clothes over, feed the child good food and be kind. She'll need a non judgey friend and it looks like you're it. As long as she appears happy and fed enough...she'll be ok. If she's being hit, starved or abused mentally or physically THEN you worry. A tatty kid who is fed on KFC isn't enough to call SS over.

So you're judging them basically because the dad had a lie in and because when they had a guest they went somewhere that for most kids would be a treat?

There has to be more to this than what you're saying in your OP.

BTW my 11 year old has constant chapped lips. I wasn't aware it was neglectful confused

NeoMaxiZoomDweebie Sat 11-May-13 20:18:37

I think OP is annoyed as the Dad slept when her DD was there Freddie...and I would be annoyed just don't let your DD go there OP....bring the child to yours.

I read it as the OP arrived at 11.30 and the girl wasn't ready because the dad had fallen asleep?

cozietoesie Sat 11-May-13 20:20:12

Where's the child's Mum in all this and how many hours does she actually work?

Have you spoken to her in the course of going round to take the child out? She must be there on some occasions, surely.

Oh, right you mean at tea time? But apparently the mother lives there? Even though they aren't together, so there would have been another adult in the house, or am I reading that wrong too?

I think that any family could have a snippet of their lives posted on here and someone would say call SS.

If you werent so disgusted by the KFC I would probably say YANBU. But from what you have posted I am finding it hard to tell if this is anything more than a case of different standards.

Scheherezade Sat 11-May-13 20:23:08

Oh God I want KFC now....

My DD hasn't got dressed today. She's still in her pj's and she hasn't brushed her hair. (She has cleaned her teeth)

She's tired she has a sore throat and she wanted a duvet day.

But that could be twisted to poor child mother wasn't fit to dress her.

poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 20:24:17

I think she's basically ok. It'd be much better if the useless ungrateful father sodded off though. The mum's obviously doing her best by working but I do feel that this child is forgotten about (she has a troubled teenage sister too).


cozietoesie Sat 11-May-13 20:25:39

Do you see/speak to the mother on occasion?

poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 20:27:56

And I mentioned the bloody KFC cos that's all the father did that day for them before he fell asleep. The mum was out til 7pm.

OhLori Sat 11-May-13 20:28:53

One of the problems with AIBU is that there is often enough space to put everything in. Therefore its sometimes its difficult to get the full picture.

If you're not entirely clear, perhaps wait a little while and keep your antennae pricked and see what kind of sense you get. I also agree with maybe mentioning it to the School. Or you could ring Childline for some advice. OTOH, though it sounds like she isn't being properly looked after, I suppose you could say that of many children. I think it depends what your real sense of what is going on is.

Jux Sat 11-May-13 20:29:31

I think the more often you have your daughter's friend over the better, at least for the moment.

lisaro Sat 11-May-13 20:29:41

you sound very judgemental about non issues and as such I would find it hard to take you seriously.

So what about the bloody KFC? Maybe he thought it was a treat?


And if the mother wasn't working I suppose she'd be getting slated as a benefits scrounger too?

What exactly is your issue? That he fell asleep? How long for? She went there for tea and they went to KFC and the mother was home by 7, he can't have been asleep long.

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 20:31:22

The father's got a drink problem. Is this fact, rumour or supposition?

CombineBananaFister Sat 11-May-13 20:32:25

Like others said, I think there is maybe more to it than you are describing otherwise it just comes across as you being a bit uptight about the Colonel.

Dad being a drunk and falling asleep = unacceptable. Dad being knackered and having a nap = fine. Mum working also not an issue.

BUT if you think your child is not being looked after properly when there, don't let her go AND more importantly if you think the mums got a lot on her plate and you guys are ok then just have them both at your house to play and make sure she's fed well -it will mean a lot.

Mintyy Sat 11-May-13 20:32:49

Yanbu. I would definitely be concerned, too.

If it weren't so potentially serious I would be roffling at some of the extreme examples of relaxed attitudes on this thread.

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 20:33:08

Being looked after by a drunk person is a problem but if you do talk to anybody else about it and you only highlight the things you have here they will not react to it because to be quite frank it just sounds like your being a bit mean and just sou ds like different standards.

What did you expect him to do? Dress up as a clown and juggle?

Yes, sleeping isnt great, but perhaps because he trusts his own 7yo to play quietly he didnt see the issue.

Lioninthesun Sat 11-May-13 20:34:07

Sounds as if the mother isn't financially able to leave him for some reason - perhaps childcare costs while she works?
If he is as bad as he sounds you could be pivotal in helping her get back on her feet. He clearly needs to go and some other provision made to help their girl.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Sat 11-May-13 20:35:06

Typical AIBU thread. OP says one thing that upsets a few people who like KFC, so that negates the rest of her post .....

I DO NOT like KFC.

That's not the point I'm making.

According to my ex MIL I'm a drunken slut who is regularly too drunk to drive and shags the fleet. Neglects her children and doesn't feed them properly.

Tis all balls. Pardon the pun.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Sat 11-May-13 20:37:04

Being drunk in charge of a child regularly is the beginning and end of it, for me. If not giving adequate care because of that stems from that then they are relevant

poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 20:37:17

Yes we're quite good friends although I am a bit resentful about the number of times I take her daughter out or have her over but get nothing in return (ie. Take my daughter for a couple of hours!) I trust her just not him. I don't wanna sound over-dramatic or martyr-like but that girl would be having a pretty miserable childhood if it wasn't for me. We go to the beach, out on walks, swimming, aquarium all sorts. Strange thing is I don't really like her much but who does like their kid's friends? Its hard enough liking your own kid sometimes! But this girl hardly speaks which annoys me. Also she helped herself to my fruit bowl today then threw a partly eaten apple in the bin - grr!

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 20:38:57

KFC negating the entire post,nope.

The only valid info in the entire post is the drinking problem the other examples are none issues.

nellyjelly Sat 11-May-13 20:39:08

Sounds like low level neglect, not uncommon. Not much SS would do if that all there is but depending on how old the child is, I would tell the school. They may have concerns too. It is all the little bits of info that add up sometimes to show a bigger picture.

In the meantime, as someone else pointed out, be kind to this girl. Keep an eye on her, give her nice food etc. sounds like she needs a bit of extra support.

Jesus Wept.

Haven't you considered that if he's unemployed and she's working a NMW job they may have no money to go to the beach or aquarium or swimming?

You sound insufferably judgey.

Boomba Sat 11-May-13 20:39:48

a child is considered 'at risk' i think, if they are living with an alcoholic parent.

If I were in your position OP I would speak to the school about my concerns. I would expect them to have noticed if the child is dirty and under-fed; SS may well be aware already. Your information may be part of a bigger picture/ might alert them to neglect/ might be dismissed..

feralgirl Sat 11-May-13 20:40:27

Wow, your DD's friend sounds just like my best friend when I was a kid (she still is now btw). She wasn't abused or even really properly neglected but her dad was/ still is an alcoholic and he used to spend a lot of the time he was 'looking after' her drunk and unconscious while her mum was at work.

She spent a lot of time with us and stayed over about once a week. My clothes were all hand-me-downs anyway and my mum often used to put stuff aside for her when we got a new batch from my cousins. It was never a big deal and I never thought anything of it, but I know now that my Mum talked to our primary school teachers about it.

In retrospect, I'd do exactly the same as my Mum did, whilst keeping a really close eye for any signs of abuse.

fluffymindy Sat 11-May-13 20:41:15

You don't sound very nice.

If you cannot be nice to child for its own sake then leave them too it.

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 20:41:23

But where and when did you get to learn that the father has an alcohol problem, poppymay13?

Boomba Sat 11-May-13 20:42:31

oh er, x-posted. Your last post is 'orrible.

Dont send your dd there if you dont trust him ffs...who does that????

and stop having friend over if you dont like her and are so resentful


MummaBubba123 Sat 11-May-13 20:43:12

Please read your own last comment, OP. The issue is more about how you feel, rather than about car and concern for a little girl.
Let her eat an apple - or a half.
Let her talk - or stay silent.
Give her unconditional love and acceptance as it sounds like she might need someone who does.
If you can't and you find that you still feel resentful, it will inevitably be sensed by her - leaving her to feel 'neglected' at home and unwanted by you.
Better you left the poor little girl alone and voiced your concerns with her teacher/ mother.

meditrina Sat 11-May-13 20:43:37

If he is regularly drunk when in sole charge of a child, then I think there's a problem.

I don't mean someone having a drink or two, I mean frequently drinking to the point of drunkenness or dependent daily drinking.

If you know this to be the case, either you talk to the mother or report officially. The NSPCC helpline will be able to offer you advice, and explain how serious alcohol related neglect can become. An intervention before things hit that point is in everyone's interests.

MummaBubba123 Sat 11-May-13 20:43:50

Care - not 'car'

CombineBananaFister Sat 11-May-13 20:45:40

Am bowing out, was trying to be optimistic about mis-unstanding your post then you got all moany about her being quiet and chucking a half eaten apple in the bin.
We do not give to recieve (non-religious) but if you feel resentful of the friendship and not just worried about the care/safety your DD/she gets when there then you sound a bit mean tbh

JeeanieYuss Sat 11-May-13 20:45:53

No you mentioned 'the bloody KFC' because you were being v.judgemental and now are trying to backtrack.

You don't come across very well at all op.

How do you know he's an alcoholic?

I am, according to my ex MIL, and yet I NEVER drink with the kids in the house, and have been properly drunk 3 times in my life. I am 45.

poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 20:46:40

Freddie: if I was that 'judgey ' then surely I'd have nothing to do with the family.

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 20:47:34

If - if the man has a drink problem what's the point in talking to the mother, meditrina? She will already know and will be doing nothing about it apart from leaving her child with him, which imo is neglectful in itself.

But the OP hasn't said when or where or how she discovered he's got an alcohol problem yet.

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 20:48:30

So come on then op answer the question several people have asked.

What makes you say he's a alcoholic

poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 20:48:53

Thanks for that feralcar. I will keep doing what I'm doing :-)

Actually, the issue is they are not grateful enough for what you do. In your opinion. That's it, isn't it?

poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 20:50:45

I didn't say alcoholic. I said he had a drink problem. My friend (his ex) told me & I can smell the alcohol on him at 3.15 at the end school. The teacher noticed this too so the school are aware.

How do you know the man has a drink problem?

VelvetSpoon Sat 11-May-13 20:52:55

You are so concerned for this child, make so much effort to take her out and do things with her (allegedly) yet you begrudge her an apple? hmm

I see very little here to worry about. I am sure the mother is doing her best. The father is obviously a bit of a waster BUT I can tbh think of many ways in which he could be worse.

I'd keep my opinions and 'concerns' to myself if I was you. And if this child is such an incovenience, then don't have her round, or take her out again.

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 20:54:11

So his ex told you he has a drink problem. Riiiiiight. Want to know what my ex says about me? Because I can tell you now, it's not true.

And you can smell alcohol on him at 3.15? That used to be quite common with a bunch of middle class mums at my children's former school - we'd meet for a drink prior to pick up. We were/are not suffering from a drink problem.

WHEN did you learn this please? You haven't said, I don't think.

And, if it's true, what the fuck is the mother doing leaving the child with him? She's just as much to blame, if you want to start hoiking up the judgey pants!

meditrina Sat 11-May-13 20:54:18

I think it is worth it because, if he is alcoholic, it is likely he is skilled in hiding the extent of his drinking. She may well not have the full picture. And as she is not present in the house, she may it know about his sleeping etc or other details of the type of care he is actually providing.

Especially as they are separated - communication between them may be bad. And the DC is stuck in the middle and may not be talking well to either parent.

The mother may be able to act to change things, or she may indeed already be complicit in what OP sees as neglect of the child. OP knows the family and will be better placed to make a call on the level the mother's complicity. But if the possibility is there that she is not complicit, it's an option worth considering.

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 20:54:45

Did your friend tell you this before or after you let him look after your child?

My ex and his mother tell anyone who will listen a pile of crap about me.

The school are aware.

And laugh.

lisaro Sat 11-May-13 20:56:54

I agree Freddie OP seems to get off on being the 'saviour' of a child and family she obviously looks down on and dislikes. Or being a martyr. I wouldn't want you near my kids, OP. Hope your child doesn't get your ways.

As far as I can tell, the only reason you are taking anything to do with this family is to make yourself feel good.

So the parents should be more grateful because they are undeserving poor and you are doing more than your charitable duty by having their child round.

Have you ever seen the film Oliver?

I seriously hope the child never picks up on the attitude you have towards her, if she's got difficulties at home already that's the last thing she needs.

Mintyy Sat 11-May-13 21:00:12

None of us know this child or her parents but if you have concerns (and I can see why you would) then don't suppress them or put them aside. Although you don't like the little girl, could you try and gently talk to her about life at home?

Boomba Sat 11-May-13 21:00:15

The school should not be letting the child go with her father if they know he has a drink problem and he picks her up stinking of alcohol

i cant tell if you are just hamming it up, or if the girl really is at risk

mumandboys123 Sat 11-May-13 21:01:39

rambososcar if dad does indeed have a 'drink problem', what exactly is it that you want mum to do in terms of not leaving her child with him? can you be sure she is aware of the extent of the problem? should she just give up her job? perhaps it would suit the OP better to be able to berate a lazy, benefit scrounging family rather than acknowledging that life is incredibly difficult for all of us, but particularly difficult for people who find themselves backed into a corner they never expected to be backed into and just don't know how to work their way out of?

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 21:01:41

meditrina, the mum knows of the problem, she told the OP of the problem yet still the mum lets the ex have care of the child? If she knows he has "a drink problem" she knows enough to be considered neglectful if she leaves the child in his care. There's no point in appealing to the common sense of someone who doesn't possess any.

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 21:02:03

Oh and fwiw I recently had some gossip repeated to me that my ex has been telling people around his home town.

Apparently I'm a drug addict prostitute.

I don't drink or use any drugs I've only ever had sex with two people I was not married to and neither of them paid me anything. Its just laughable bad mouthing

Mintyy Sat 11-May-13 21:02:04

Oh and ignore the posters on this thread who have taken against you. This thread is not about what kind of a person you are, it is about possible harm to a child. Lots of people on aibu see being arsey and contrary as a sport wink.

I just typed a long post. But, you know what, it's not worth it.

poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 21:03:24

I only have her round as she's a very close friend of my daughter who is an only child. I wouldn't bother otherwise, believe me!

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 21:04:34

The only person who can formally state another person has a drink issue or is even drunk is a doctor,if he is not actually visibly drunk the school can't stop him collecting her.

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 21:04:37

mumandboys I don't care what the OP would find more suitable in terms of someone to berate but AFAIAC yes, I would consider it far better to be workless and on benefits until the person could find their feet again than to leave a child with an alcohol abuser.

Just my opinion.

LEMisdisappointed Sat 11-May-13 21:04:48

I am not sure what to make of this - In the first instance you appear to show genuine concern for the girl, ok the KFC comment was a bit daft, might not be your chioce of food but its not the biggest parenting fail in the world.

WHat i can't work out is if you are genuinely concerned or just put out because you have the girl (who you don't like hmm) over more than they have your DD over.

You have the information that he has a drinking problem from your friend - HIS EX !! Well thats an unbiased source of information then. The teacher should not even be discussing this with you, unless you have raised it as a point of concern, she should however just take note and follow cp procedures. Also, are you sure he isn't diabetic? Ketones on the breath can smell a bit like alcohol.

My DD is a scruffy urchin child, partly because we are skint but partly because shes a bit of a tom boy and prefers to shlep about in leggings and tops - the other day she looked like she had been in a coal mine as she had been playing in the mud.

I'd be miffed about the falling asleep i think, but i often hit a bit of a wall about 5 o clock sometimes and can't say i haven't fallen asleep before - i actually fell asleep in a soft play centre when solely in charge of DD once blush

So if the school took the word of my ex and his mother.

I wouldn't be allowed to pick my own kids up and I'd have SS services at my door, because I am an alcoholic, don't feed my kids properly, don't care for them and shag anything with a dick for money.

Right then. Coz ex's always tell the truth. Yeah. So right.

nellyjelly Sat 11-May-13 21:04:49

God some people just love diving in and having a go. The OP is just sharing concerns about a 7 yr old. She might be right, she might be wrong, but there is nothing wrong with asking for advice. Sto attacking her because she didn't say exactly the 'correct' thing in her posts

More people should take an interest in kids like this. It might be nothing but it might be something.

poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 21:06:03

Thanks Mintyy. I know there are some miserable people on here who just want to bitch. Night all x

Her concerns are that he fell asleep which isn't great, but other than that it's all a load of gossip and bad mouthing.

Oh and he took them for a KFC, which in this house is a massive treat.


ReluctantlyBeingYoniMassaged Sat 11-May-13 21:06:30

Being an alcoholic can mean a whole spectrum of things. One poster has said that if one parent is an alcoholic then the child is at risk. My DP is an alcoholic (just started the role to recovery) - we both work full time, are well educated and provide a (relatively!) clean home for our ds. He is not at risk.
We can't afford KFC though!

Would a school really take concerns from an ex that seriously? If there were no other issues?

Because if that's the case, I am genuinely worried.

nellyjelly Sat 11-May-13 21:08:19

Yes it is seen as a risk. Research shows kids in families where alcohol is a problem are more at risk from neglect or abuse. Does't mean they all are. It is just a flag for anu agencies involved. OP right to be concerned.

qualitytoffee Sat 11-May-13 21:08:24

OP while your intentions may be based on genuine concern, you sound very judgemental. So she eats KFC, and throws an apple core away! (shock)
You don't have any proof that Dad is an alcoholic, i'm a lone parent and i'm sat here drinking a lovely vodka and coke! (My son is 17 though, before you judge)
Maybe you're right in your assumptions, if so, keep an eye out, if not, keep doing what your doing, but less of the bitchy tone thats coming across in your post.

yaimee Sat 11-May-13 21:08:39

What's the mother like? Is she kind and attentive towards the little girl when she isn't at work?
Do you know for a fact this girl is eating poorly or is she just eating foods that you wouldn't consider to be healthy? What I mean is, is she well nourished and otherwise healthy?
The KFC isn't a problem, it's just a treat with her friend.
Apart from that I think you might be getting an unnecessarily hard time. You obviously care about the welfare of the little girl and are doing your best to help without imposing too much.
I'd say just keep doing what you're doing. None of what you have described warrants an ss call really. It doesn't sound abusive or seriously neglectful.
Keep close, give her lots of support and kindness and keep an eye on her.
Maybe try to befriend the Mum too, so that she can talk to you if she needs help with her exp.
I'm assuming the girl is in school for most of the day and that her mum is at home for at least some of the evenings, so as long as the mum is ok you can take comfort in that.

My ex phoned SS on me because of odd socks and because I "wasnt being nice" to his partner. (I have never said boo to the woman.)

Odd fucking socks.

All the OP has to go on is gossip and different standards.

I agree Wannabe.

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 21:09:57

Still interested to know if she said this before or after you left your child in his care

yaimee Sat 11-May-13 21:11:05

Oh, maybe donate some of your dds clothes if this seems appropriate.

VelvetSpoon Sat 11-May-13 21:12:24

All the OP has to go on is gossip and different standards

^^ Absolutely agree.

Boomba Sat 11-May-13 21:12:26

if the school know he has a drink problem is what i said....if the school have been told by his xgirlfriend/MiL etc, that doesnt constitute 'knowing' anything does it hmm

and freddie presumably your children arent unclean with possible signs of dehydration/malnourishment

no sock it is not the case that a Dr needs to pronounce a eprson 'an alcoholic'. Half the time, alcoholics dont go to the doctor

A 7 year old girl who is quite shy with her friends mother? Nope no issues there.
A 7 year old girl who feels accepted enough in a house she is familiar in to do what she has been taught and help herself to healthy snacks? Nope no issues there.
Who obviously isn't starving either.
Your issues with KFC, a father who fell asleep for hours and who doesn't work? Who told you he was sleeping for hours? 7 year olds IMO can't be relied upon to get accurate facts.
YABU to take against them because they can't or don't reciprocate taking your DD out for the day.

I will concede you should keep an eye out if your senses are tingling, but you need way more than this.

mumandboys123 Sat 11-May-13 21:13:01

unfortunately rambososcar, it's not that easy. People have bills to pay, standards they believe they need to meet, lives they try and hold together. I have not personally understood that the father is an 'ex' from this thread, just that his 'ex' told the OP that he has a drink problem. I might have it wrong.

Regardless, life's hard. People make poor decisions based on the best possible reasons. I suspect there is a huge amount more to this story than we can possibly get from the OP and making any kind of real judgement is impossible.

Boomba Sat 11-May-13 21:15:07

no freddie they really wouldnt. Has your x spoken to the school? they are probably obliged to record it/maybe have a conversation with you

yaimee Sat 11-May-13 21:16:42

Actually, after reading your subsequent posts I've changed my mind, the hard time you're getting is completely justified.
Definitely agree with wannabe about the gossip and different standards.

Boomba Sat 11-May-13 21:16:53

reluctant a child is at emotional risk with an alcoholic parent, even if there is no neglect/abuse

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 21:17:11

Actually from a legal perspective ( as a cp case would be) then yes they do you don't just say that person is a drunk and get believed. And should ss attempt to bring a case based solely on that then they would have to have legally accepted evidence.

He and his mother have told anyone who will even half listen.

But honestly, can't you see how all this is flim flam and smoke and mirrors and gossip and a picture being built of not very much indeed?

The op's friend is the ex, she's hardly going to give a fair picture is she?

Lioninthesun Sat 11-May-13 21:17:26

I just want to add - her throwing the half eaten apple away - I imagine she was scared to say she had taken it and couldn't finish it and desperately tried to hide the fact. My mum drank a lot and the personality changes were so huge that you never knew what kind of parent you were going to get - erupting for little or no reason. I was also a very quiet child because of this. Please imagine how her home life must be at her age, and re asses why she is quiet and possibly slightly secretive. She needs support and will possibly be clinging onto your family for fun and care.

uncongenial Sat 11-May-13 21:17:28

The alcoholic father would be a concern, if you're sure about that. Also that the mother hasn't noticed, or done anything about, the dirty, ragged clothing?

sittinginthesun Sat 11-May-13 21:18:37

Tbh, OP, I'm not quite sure what you want from this thread?

If you are genuinely concerned, then you continue to have the child round to play, take her out, support the mum.

If you are very concerned, then talk to the school.

If you find it a nuisance to have her round, and don't feel comfortable letting your child go to hers, then stop doing it. But why post here?

Lioninthesun Sat 11-May-13 21:18:54

Bless her - I want to send the poor kid something now sad

VelvetSpoon Sat 11-May-13 21:20:32

My Ex often falls asleep when in charge of the DC. He is the sort of person that, if he sits down, he's asleep within seconds. Hence they are left to their own devices when they are with him. Likewise he often feeds DC takeaways and KFC. Not my choice of food BUT it won't harm them once a fortnight.

My DC also look like scruffs, they have plenty of clean clothes in their wardrobes but often prefer to wear the same thing 2 or 3 times until I can wrestle it off them

My Ex however does work FT and has plenty of cash to take the DC and their mates out for treat days, so presumably wouldn't attract the OP's disapproval...

Boomba Sat 11-May-13 21:23:36

yeah freddie i do get that...but there are still concerns IMO. OP got the gossip from the x, so it is unreliable BUT also;

he does school pick ups smelling of alcohol
he sleeps whilst supervising kids
the child is unclean (which IS a warning)
She has chapped lips (constantly??)

All on there own, probably nothing. All together, maybe something. Id rather raise my concerns with the school and let them assess the situation. You cant turn a blind eye.

MorrisZapp Sat 11-May-13 21:24:09

Do you have any friends, Freddie? Do any of them have partners or ex partners? If they told you about the men in their life, would you believe them, or do you think your friends talk flim flam?

I tend to believe my friends when they tell me about their exes. Why don't you pop over to the relationship board and tell everybody to stop badmouthing their exes?

Of course I have friends don't be ridiculous

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 21:26:17

"unfortunately rambososcar, it's not that easy. People have bills to pay, standards they believe they need to meet, lives they try and hold together"

mumandboys, do you think if you tried really, really hard you could be even more patronising? hmm Fgs, I know that! Been there, done that and could write the sodding book which is why I know that it's not impossible or unreasonable to do.

I just think the OP was trying to built a neglect case. And there's a massive difference to listening to an mate slag off their ex to calling SS.

VelvetSpoon Sat 11-May-13 21:28:54

The OP didn't say the girl was dirty - she said her clothes were tatty and dirty. Not quite the same thing - and in what way? I know children who wreck clothes, and are filthy within minutes of getting dressed, if this was after a day at school I'm not surprised she didn't look clean and tidy.

My DS2 has chapped lips most of the winter. I buy him lipsalve, he forgets to put it on half the time.

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 21:29:53

mumandboys, the man is an ex to the child's mother. They live together but are no longer in a relationship.

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 21:31:05

Freddie - are you stalking me or am I stalking you again? wink grin

Boomba Sat 11-May-13 21:32:03

ramboscar is correct. I was told in no uncertain terms that I could not leave my children with my X if i suspected he had been drinking; that SS would consider that neglect

(as they should, i woulld NEVER have done it)

Boomba Sat 11-May-13 21:33:36

and do you smell of alcohol at school picks ups velvet and fall asleep when supervising children?

nellyjelly Sat 11-May-13 21:33:56

To be drunk in charge of a child is actually a criminal offence.

Rambos - I was here first grin

MorrisZapp Sat 11-May-13 21:34:12

Op didn't mention SS. I'm just wondering why on this thread, friends are not to be believed when discussing exes.

I had an ex with a drink problem. I also had one with a boomerang shaped knob. My friends know all this and more, and they believe me.

poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 21:34:35

The ex is the mother and my friend. She lives with her ex, the father. As I originally said. So there's no gossip thank you as I speak to both parents directly.

But surely if you knew the man had a problem with drink (coz you know that's not code for is an alcoholic) then you wouldn't let your child go round there? Or am I over-protective?

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 21:35:42

Sometimes when you have concerns of this nature posting and asking the question can really help you work out if the concerns are genuine concerns or just because you have subconscious or open issues with the parent involved.

Its easier to see a problem if you dislike the parent or feel you are superior to them or there is history equally as such it can be harder to see a real problem if you really like the parent or there parenting style is not much different to yours or lots of parents in your social group.

Nothing wrong with asking others what they think.

Fwiw I think its a massive problem having a resident parent with a drink problem even if to most people they look like ok parents. But I also don't think chapped lips or clothes that are not up to your standards and takeaways are an issue.

The reason why I'm asking if she told you before or after your child was in his care is because if it was before its a very good indicator of your impressions of how why ect she said it. If at the time something about the conversation made you go hmm and with out it being anything you could put your finger on but made you think perhaps she's being malicious to the point that you had no issue in sending your child then its fairly safe to say its your friendship with mum that has in essence red flagged your brain.

So the man himself has told you he has a problem with drink?

Boomba Sat 11-May-13 21:37:56

OP your friend really really needs to find alternative childcare

Why are they still living together? That must be hell for both of them.

poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 21:42:48

He's had the problem for years.

Boomba Sat 11-May-13 21:43:37

can you describe the drinking problem/pattern?

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 21:45:25

Freddie, no you're not over-protective. You know someone has an alcohol problem - you don't leave your child in their care. Doesn't matter if he's the father of the child or the husband of your friend, you don't leave the child in his care. I don't see what's hard to grasp about that, and I don't think you or Sock do either.

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 21:47:53

My best friend in the whole world has over the years ranted about her ex and his incompetency as a parent. Ok yes he's not ideal but he's done nothing that warrants her routine ramblings of cutting contact.

The difference is I tell her she's talking shit and would be doing her children a huge disservice if she did, she knows he's not abusive neglectful or a risk in anyway to the kids she just gets cross that his priorities are not the same as hers granted his priorities make him a great dad to his resident child but piss poor to their children but as he is not a risk or abusive to then sometimes she just needs to take a step back.

I'm sure if the op had given actual examples of legit cp issues along with the drinking problem then nobody would have been doubting them.

Exactly Sock.

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 21:55:16


There are no circumstances that I would ever allow any of my children to be in the care of someone with a drink problem none what so ever no matter who that person was. They could be the other parent with a court order with a power of arrest in their hand demanding I handed over my children and I still wouldn't.

I also wouldn't let my children go to dinner or to play after school at a house where I knew one of the parents who had a drink problem was in even if the other parent was also there.

I think you have misinterpreted my stance on the subject.

poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 21:56:12

I didn't realise that his drinking had got worse recently. He offered to pick up my daughter and as my friend obviously thinks he's able to look after their child adequately, I was happy for him to do so. Different standards I guess. I told the mother the next day that he was asleep the whole time & she said she'd have a word with him. I didn't want to offend her by saying my daughter wouldn't be going to their house again. And btw its highly unlikely that my daughter made it up about him sleeping. The day I rang at 930 the girl had to wake him up to ask if she could go out and then he went back to sleep!

There's a lot of something being made out of not really very much.

I sleep in on the weekend. And sometimes I go back to bed. Or fall asleep on the sofa. It's a bit of a non-issue.

As to the drinking, I'd never ever let my child go somewhere with someone who I thought had a problem with drink. How did they get to KFC?

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 21:59:03

No, no, on the contrary, sorry Sock, you misunderstand me. I gathered how you feel from your earlier questions and was trying to say that there's no way I'd allow someone with a drink problem to care for my child and that I believe you were of the same opinion.

Sorry to have given you the wrong impression, we're absolutely in agreement on this, right down to the "could be a court order and power of arrest and still I wouldn't" bit.

Samu2 Sat 11-May-13 22:01:51

Except for the drink problem I have seen nothing worrying here.. tatty clothes, KFC's and chapped lips are not what I consider neglect, but the drink problem definitely could be.

If anyone thinks that a child is being neglected then you call the SS or talk to the school, however before you do so, take a long non-judgmental look at it and see if you really think it is warranted. Your post does come across as judgy and the fact that you resent the girl eating half an apple does make me wonder if perhaps a dislike of the girl and her father is clouding your judgment.

So do something if you are concerned enough, just make sure you are doing it for the right reasons.

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 22:02:26

So OP, you knew this man had a drink problem but because your friend lets him care for their child you thought it was ok for him to care for yours, is that what you're saying at the start of your post at 21.56?

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 22:05:46

Poppy have you actually seen examples of his drinking problem yourself? By that I mean do you actually know he has a problem?

If so then you made a really bad very questionable choice to say yes to him collecting your child.

And you don't need to say your dd is never going there again you just say no when ever its offered.

If that's the case you really need to pass this into the hands of someone who is actually qualified to deal with it but when you do I would leave off the differing standards stuff because if you don't it will be hard to get them to take you seriously.

The concerning stuff is the drink issue and the passing out drunk as well as the mother leaving the child in his care. You don't need to let on you have passed it on nor does it mean your child should lose her friend.

Samu2 Sat 11-May-13 22:07:54

He offered to pick up my daughter and as my friend obviously thinks he's able to look after their child adequately, I was happy for him to do so

Hang on? one minute you think he is neglectful with a drinking problem and the next you trusted him with your own child because your friend trusts him to look after their child adequately?

Maybe I am just tired and reading this wrong but it is very odd to me that you would allow your child with someone who you think has a drink problem and is neglectful on the basis of your friend thinking he is able to look after them adequately.

If I had any concerns about a child being neglected by a parent NWIH would I leave that person with my child.

poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 22:09:37

Freddie they walked to KFC believe it or not! Are you in the UK or the USA?!

No I was just wondering, because in my town they are out at a retail park and he'd have had to have driven is all.

scottishmummy Sat 11-May-13 22:14:53

the mum needs a medal working to support her family
poor nutrition,alcoholic father is significant.
working mum isn't

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 22:16:00


I guess that means it was me who misinterpreted your post,sorry. But thank you very much for clarifying what you meant and your right we do agree.

It took me a while because I got sidetracked by a heading that popped up on the side of my screen about shitting out piles hence the delay in posting

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 22:17:47

Thank you Sock, but there's no apology needed. I should imagine that a heading about shitting out piles would distract you somewhat too! grin

poppymay13 Sat 11-May-13 22:22:24

They don't have a car (just as well). I don't have intimate knowledge of his drinking habits. I didn't say he was an alcoholic for that reason. I think its beside the point anyway. The point is whether the girl is being cared for properly. He could be asleep cos he's depressed etc etc. Why the focus on how/when/what re the drinking? I came on here to just get a bit of feedback really as I don't want to discuss it with other mums from school & for them to then be gossiping or judging. I don't think it matters if I do judge; I'm honest & I still care & think my actions show that. All my critics will be pleased to know that I'm very self-critical too.

Why are you letting your child go with someone you think "has a drink problem"?

There is no way ever I'd let anyone who I thought had a drink problem take my kids. The focus on the drinking is because it's not exactly sensible to let someone you think/know has a drink problem look after your youngster, can't you see that?

Boomba Sat 11-May-13 22:29:10

Why the focus on how/when/what re the drinking?


why do you think its besides the point? its entirely the point!!

I dont even know what you are asking then?? should you be worried because the girl has cracked lips and had a take away? confused

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 22:36:34

"Why the focus on how/when/what re the drinking?"

See that desk? See my head?

Other than the drinking, the only issues are minor ones. Really really. My DD looks like orphan annie after school and yet she goes in clean in the morning. The take away could have been a treat since they had a friend round. Chapped lips, well, again, DD has chapped lips. I can only send lip salve. Eating an apple and putting half in the bin, well I just fed the dog some lovely chicken pie tonight that DD1 didn't eat. And I often sleep in on the weekends.

So that only really leaves the drinking that would concern me. And I cannot believe that anyone would let someone with a drink problem take their child for the afternoon/evening. I wouldn't do it, and I'm pretty easy going about most things.

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 22:51:51

Because the drinking is the issue the rest is just you judging different standards.

And I cannot get my head around the fact that you claim you genuinely believe him to have a drink problem based on things you are quite vague on yet it does appear to be a genuine belife because if you do, that is the only valid concern in your posts yet it didnt concern you enough to not leave your child in his care.

But as soon as you add in a KFC clothing not up to your standards and chapped lips all of a sudden its now concerning you.

What sock said.

Piemother Sat 11-May-13 23:19:36

What a weird thread. Op judgement aside you are describing poor supervision, definitely and some neglect, possibly. The child being quite withdrawn is maybe as a result of these issues. The apple thing is annoying but kids need someone to model good behaviour and maybe no one is for this child.
It's my opinion that you should share you concerns with the school and let them take it further.

howdoo Sat 11-May-13 23:29:53

FGS, this thread is the worst of MN - cherry pick what you want to hear and make a deal of that.

"Why the focus on how/when/what re the drinking?"

See that desk? See my head?"

What OP said was that it could also be depression that caused the dad to sleep during the day, and that the issue was whether the child was properly cared for, not the cause of it.

Best one by far: "I can smell the alcohol on him at 3.15 at the end school. The teacher noticed this too so the school are aware." Answer: "Also, are you sure he isn't diabetic? Ketones on the breath can smell a bit like alcohol. " Yes, that's the most likely answer...

It seems to me that it is likely that this kid is being left with a man with an alcohol problem bad enough to leave him sleeping during the day. And that this is probably not a good thing for the child.

rambososcar Sat 11-May-13 23:34:28

howdoo, the level of care (not) provided by someone with an alcohol problem is only half the issue. Another is the example set to children by leaving them in the care of someone with a drink problem. So, the cause of the possible neglect is an issue for some of us.

<Goes back to banging head on desk>

howdoo Sat 11-May-13 23:40:50

Genuine question - so is the issue with the dad (with possible drink problem) or the mum (leaving them with person with possible drink problem)? Or the OP? And, honestly, why would it matter, if the child is potentially being neglected? Would it change what should be done?

howdoo Sat 11-May-13 23:45:30

It seems to me that the OP said some things which were irrelevant and potentially judgey, and this has derailed the thread, while the facts, stripping away all the KFC etc stuff, still don't sound good.

YesIamYourSisterInLaw Sat 11-May-13 23:49:01

Op I was with you until I read your update saying your resentful an don't even like the girl.
I'm sorry but how is the mother supposed to take your daughter as much as you take hers when she's working all the hours god sends, think how much it must kill her not to be able to be there for her.
As for her being quiet, have you ever considered she probably lacks a lot of self confidence since her dad is usually asleep and her mum is always at work. She's also probably lonely as fuck and riddled with insecurity. She's a child so she maybe didn't think that it would be rude not to finish her food, heck her dad probably doesn't monitor how much/little she eats and when you live on unhealthy food an apple is probably not going to taste that appealing.

Boomba Sat 11-May-13 23:51:35

if dad has a drink problem, then the issue is with both parents whilst mum is leaving the child in his charge. they are both (theoretically) failing their duty of care

I think, if the child is being neglected because the parent is an alcoholic then there are other concerns immediately arent there. Falling asleep when drunk is very different to tired snoozing; so there is a danger there. Children of alcoholics witness things they shouldnt, feel guilty and cover up for the parent; taking on the 'adult' role....

If a child is neglected because a parent is depressed, its a different set of concerns etc

YesIamYourSisterInLaw Sat 11-May-13 23:51:42

Posted to soon.
What I was going to say is instead of being resentful towards her think how lucky your dd is to have you and how horrible it must be for this girl. Childhood is supposed to be the happiest time of your life and home is supposed to be be where you feel safe, loved and secure

IneedAsockamnesty Sat 11-May-13 23:53:15

Because the op has given no examples of actual neglect.

Sleeping with a 7 year old about is not neglect providing you don't sleep so deeply that you may as well to be there.

Chapped lips are not neglect

KFC is not neglect

Tatty not especially clean clothing is not neglect.

Not reciprocating play arrangements for a child's friend is not neglect

Your child thinking its ok to take an apple to eat whilst a guest in someone's house is not neglect

Neither is only eating half that apple.

The only way the one potential thing on this list may be genuine neglect is if its not a normal snooze on the sofa and dad has such a bad drink issue that he's passing out that would be neglect.

But if that's the case and he genuinely does have a drink problem that leads him to be passing out that the op has been aware about for years then why the bloody hell is he ok to look after her own child but none neglect issues ring her internal alarm bells and the actual issue doesn't,

Piemother Sun 12-May-13 01:10:18

Poor supervision is neglect, actually.

PosyNarker Sun 12-May-13 01:45:03

My DF has has an alcohol problem for most of my life. He is not an alcoholic in the traditional sense. In fact I've inherited his urges, like every other bugger in my family.

I was always safe. No-one ever took me on a car journey with a drunken driver.

Was it ideal? Oh hell no. That wasn't just down to dad's drink though. There was a shedload of weird that despite my middle class upbringing that made everything a bit chaotic. But we coped, because outside of wine and weirdness they were terribly supportive. I guess that's the difference.

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 12-May-13 08:13:34

Pie. The op has not highlighted ANY thing that would qualify as poor supervision unless the dad is genuinely a passing out drunk.

Its not poor supervision to the extent of neglect having a snooze on the sofa whilst your 7 year old plays if dad had left them alone to go out it still would not be formally defined as neglect ( inadvisable but subjective) being actually passed out through drink for several hours would be.

That is why it is the only issue that matters.

But if he really is a passing out drunk it was not a issue when she knowingly left her own child in his care until the KFC and tatty clothes thing.this makes it quite likely that he is not a passing out drunk because what decent parent would allow one of those to collect there own child from school walk then to KFC and back and then have them looking after her with no other supervision for hours.

That's actually IMO worse than the mans ex leaving this child in his care as its quite likely that some well meaning person who thinks they know about things has probably told her she has little choice due to PR and rights but the op's child is not also his child she has no entwined back ground with him so no actual understandable reason to make such a crappy decision.

Of course its also likely the op did not make a crappy decision as the bloke is not actually a falling down drunk and that ( the only legit aspect of this being a real cp issue) is just exaggerated or malicious nonsense and he's just got different standards to the op.

LynetteScavo Sun 12-May-13 08:25:56

So you are friends with this girls mother? Then why don't you bring the issues of dirty clothes and lack of supervision up with her?


Cherriesarelovely Sun 12-May-13 11:35:02

Strange. Judgemental and unkind maybe but Op has said this man smells of alcohol when picking up the children, he went to sleep for the entirety of her Dds visit and he is frequently asleep during the day but she is not allowed to "assume" he has an alcohol problem??

I wouldn't let him pick your dd up again Op but I would carry on supporting the little girl in the way that you are.

Am really amazed that others don't see this as a concerning situation.

As to the other areas of concern...the kfc is irrelevant imo but being dressed in dirty, scruffy clothes day after day is not. It is completely different to wearing clean clothes and then getting them mucky throughout the day. I see children like the one you describe every day in my job OP and it is bloody horrible for them. They feel uncomfortable and other children notice. I think I would speak to the mum and the school if I were you.

The point is, Cherries, that EVERYONE sees the concern if this man is stinking of booze when picking the wee girls up. but why did the OP let her child go if that is the case? The rest of it is all something being made out of nothing.

I had a doze on the sofa the other night whilst my kids were here. Doesn't mean I'm alcoholic.

Cherriesarelovely Sun 12-May-13 11:42:46

No freddie it doesn't but presumably you don't smell of alcohol or regularly have to be woken up by your children late in the morning?

I agree she shouldn't have let her go as I have said but think given ALL the things she has said it does sound as if this man has a problem with alcohol. I cannot see why she would have any particular axe to grind but am well aware that in some cases people do.

I do actually have to be woken at weekends, especially if I take my painkillers. And those same painkillers mean I sometimes sleep in the day time and might seem a bit uncoordinated and out of it at pick up time.

Which nosy parkers who don't know my situation might mistake for alcohol abuse.

Mintyy Sun 12-May-13 14:15:43

I think LynetteScavo makes a good point.

As for the others insisting that there is nothing to worry about and you are just being bitchy and/or nosy ... I'm a bit speechless really. I hope it doesn't deter you from continuing to look out for this little girl (whether you like her or not) and to take matters further if you continue to be worried.

But ... yes ... a frank discussion with the Mum is a good place to start.

Mintyy Sun 12-May-13 14:17:06

Did you all miss this part from op's post?

"Needless to say she's not going there again"

nellyjelly Sun 12-May-13 14:47:40

Some of the justification for this man's behaviour on here amazes me. Yes maybe the OP is being bitchy and/ or judgemental ( though don't think she is IMO) but if she acts on her hunch that the kid is being neglected and she gets it wrong, so be it but is she is right and fails to act, a whole lot of harm will continue.

It is people not acting on hunches, fear of being seen as nosy or whatever that allows kids to continue living in crap situations.

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 12-May-13 14:58:41

But why on earth did she let her go in the first place if as she claims she's known this for years.

Nobody's missed that bit

A woman who picks up her child from school at the same time every day always smells a bit of wine at that time of the day,she finishes work an hour before school pick up and has a small glass of wine with her lunch.she does not drink at any other time not even at the weekend or if she was out socially just one small glass every week day. Nobody what so ever has ever assumed she's a drunk.

Tatty clothing is very subjective the op did not say the child was filthy or smelly she did not say she is dressed inappropriately for the weather or her age range she didn't even say that the clothing didn't fit her only complaint about the clothing was tatty and dirty. As with all the other examples she gave they are very subjective and all will be based solely of different standards in many cases different standards does not equate to neglect nor does it equate to bad parenting its just different.

Mintyy Sun 12-May-13 15:01:13

What do you think op's motivation is for posting Sock? None of us know this woman, the man or the child. The op does. If you cannot take what the op has said at face value ... then are you suggesting she is a troll?

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 12-May-13 15:02:55

Hunches based on real things is what helps stop children living in abusive situations.

Reports based on silly judgey differences or without genuine reason or with malice is why it takes so bloody long to actually get people to respond to the real cases.

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 12-May-13 15:14:46

Not at all minty I think she herself thinks its a very real situation and shes very worried about it if I thought anybody was a troll I would report the thread.

I think she quite probably deep down likes feeling superior to this man I expect she thinks her parenting style is much better ( it probably is) I expect she thinks that because her child dresses nicely that makes everything ok in her child's world. She may even have some misguided idea that she's doing the right thing or perhaps she just wants to have a discussion.

Bugger all wrong with that as I said earlier if you have concerns that are based on real issues pass them on to someone who is qualified to deal with it.

But work out yourself what a real issue is first because if you don't your concerns will not be taken seriously.

I expect most of this situation is just about feeling superior because to be quite frank if the only real issue is as bad as the op implies then what the hell was she doing sending her own child.

People make all sorts of judgements all the times and parenting is an easy target,its not unusual for some people to decide that unless you make the same parenting choices as them then your a crap or boarder line abusive parent ( I do it about people who smack,it does not make me right doing it)

HildaOgden Sun 12-May-13 15:28:49

I think that possibly your friend should be worried about her daughter spending time with a woman (you) that dislikes the child so much,they would begrudge them an apple.

And if you really think it's a household of neglect,then you yourself are being neglectful of your own child by allowing them to be there without you.

Cherriesarelovely Sun 12-May-13 16:23:14

Nothing to worry about then?! And anyone who is concerned enough about a situation like this to act is a nosy parker? Nobody is allowed to voice their concerns for fear of being called judgemental. I totally agree that Op should not let her child go there in future but to lambast her for wanting to voice a concern given what she has said about the child and parent is ridiculous.

Cherriesarelovely Sun 12-May-13 17:08:18

When I have had to confront situations like this with families through work they are almost all upset in the first instance but quickly open to receiving support which is exactly what it sounds like this family might need.

Cherriesarelovely Sun 12-May-13 17:10:07

And finally the part in sockreturning's lastpost about Op enjoying feeling superior to this man is incredible!

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 12-May-13 19:48:58

Why cherries? Are you suggesting that there are not a great many people who enjoy feeling superior and its often the strangest things that tend to assist them.

Not one person on this thread has said its ok for him to be a drunk and that being one is not a problem. I even said if that's the case report.

But if she phones up mainly focusing on tatty but appropriate clothing KFC and chapped lips then I'm afraid the call will be logged very differently to how it should. If you work for Ss you should know that.

Here's me.

Sometimes looks out of it at school pick up time. Smells of mints so could be to disguise smell of alcohol.

DD has chapped lips

DD wears clothes that are clean in the morning but she's a mud and filth magnet and is boggin by the time she comes out

DD also wears tatty clothes that are her favourites and she loves but they are tatty

I fall asleep on the sofa sometimes

I often lie in or fall back to sleep on the weekends.

I often don't take my kids out on trips and activities

Sometimes my DD doesn't eat a whole apple and puts some of it in the bin.

So the OP could be worrying about me and my DD and I suppose I'm the talk of the school - just as well I don't give a shit isn't it?

giveitago Sun 12-May-13 20:00:59

My ds throws half eaten fruit into the bin. You could accuse him of being spoilt.

However, I wouldn't accept my ds being looking after someone who isn't looking after them regardless of why they are asleep. I'd tell the school anyhow.

MummyBurrows Sun 12-May-13 23:33:09

After reading every post in this thread I've come to thinking that some of this thread is just making a mountain out of a molehill-the KFC,the chapped lips,dirty/tatty clothes. All are non-issues. God knows I treat my dd to a happy meal every now and then as a treat,there's nothing wrong with that. And she also has the ability to look like a tramp sometimes depending on what she's been doing all day and sometimes I purposely put her in stained (but washed) clothes if I know she's likely to muck her clothes up anyway because of the activites ive got planned for her or we are just dossing round the house and not going anywhere,just because the clothes are actually clean and they're comfy (top and joggers usually) but that certainly doesn't mean my child is neglected or not being looked after properly,hell some of the clothes I wear around the house are stained and have seen better days but that doesn't mean I'm dirty or a bad parent and i doubt anyone on here ponces around in heels,full make up,blow dried hair and wearing a posh frock on a daily basis all day long just in case they need to answer the door or someone might see them in a window! And in all fairness when you've seen the child in dirty/tatty clothes it could be a case of the child has picked out and dressed herself in those clothes because they're her favourites-I know if my dd got to pick her outfit each day she would live in her Tinkerbell pyjamas and alternate them with her pink onesie.

The biggest issues,to me at least,is the dad having a drinking problem and the dad falling asleep for what I assume are long periods of time when the mother is working. That's neglect and a massive cause for concern,a child should be supervised but having a little nap is harmless and we've probably all done it at some point!

The points I'm a bit confused by are why op left her child under the care of this man if she has known for years that he has an issue with drink-as far as Im concerned that makes you an irresponsible parent as you knew about it and no mother in their right mind would willingly allow their child to go with someone who may have had or start having a few drinks while in charge of their child,regardless of whether the child's mother deems the drinker responsible enough to adequately supervise their own kid seeing as,in this case,said mother is not at home the majority of the time to have the first idea of what state he is in or how much attention he pays their child so I certainly wouldn't risk my child being left in his care for any reason or length of time.

Second point I'm confused about is that op is obviously concerned to a certain degree about this child,hence the post in the first place!,but then kind of contradicts this by saying she doesn't even like the child and resents looking after her so much and was annoyed at the child helping herself to an apple that she didn't finish. Surely if you were really concerned you would want the child to be in your care more rather than less,especially if the alternative is her being left with a drunk who falls asleep quite a lot,and would be glad that she ate part of an apple because at least it's healthy and it's some food,seeing as you're concerned about her diet and the healthiness of her diet. Which brings to raise the question of how do you know what her diet is like? You're not there at meal times. Have you based this comment/assumption on the KFC they had when your dd stayed for tea and just come to the conclusion that takeaway dinners must be a daily thing for her?

Third point I'm confused on is why,if you know the mother works a lot and the father is unemployed and has a drink problem so obviously the mother is the one paying the rent and all the bills leaving next to nothing left of her wages no doubt,does it bother you so much that they don't have or take your dd anywhere near as often as you have theirs? I personally would be glad I don't let a drinker be anywhere my child and quite frankly if the mother-despite being a friend-is irresponsible enough to leave her child with a drinker on a regular basis then I can't say I'd want her to be in charge of my child either as she clearly has very different views on what is and isn't classed as acceptable childcare anyway. Yes she probably leaves her kid with the dad because she can't afford a childminder but you would think she would of made arrangements with grandparents or friends,like yourself perhaps,she trusts to look after the child while she works just so she knows her child will be properly supervised,fed and looked after until she finishes work and can do it herself instead of leaving her with someone she knows full well has a drink problem,unless she is,as others have said,exaggerating and he doesn't have that much of an issue as she makes out (for example my best friend says her DH is a big drinker but actually he just likes a beer/glass of wine or 2 with/after dinner every day-hardly a drink problem or what I'd class as a big drinker!)....

nellyjelly Mon 13-May-13 09:13:27

Carry on justifying it all then some of you. The chapped lips, the tatty clothes, the dad falling asleep, smelling of alcohol. All on their own perhaps not big issues but it is an overall picture and on that basis no harm is acting on concerns. It is not for the OP or any of you to decide is the child is being neglected or not by the way. OP should simply express concerns, to school if necessary. That is all she can do. If some people acted on these concerns more, harm might be avoided more often.

Stop lambasting the OP for actually giving a shit, stop slagging her off for leaving her child in his care. They are not the issues but as isusual on MN people like to criticise OPs, call them 'judgey'.

Child protection reviews usually find that it is small bits of info not acted on that could have helped with the bigger picture.

Berts Mon 13-May-13 09:54:16

I don't understand why the OP is being slagged here for mentioning that the mother works long hours and the dad doesn't work - it's totally relevant as it means that the dad is the main caregiver.

And if the main caregiver of a child (male or female) is regularly drunk or passed out drunk, that's a problem.

And as the OP has children of her own, I think she's well able to distinguish between normal levels of scruffy, and clothes that are tatty and dirty.

And yes, the comment about the apple was weird (really, get over it, poor kid), but surprise! The OP isn't a saint full of only loving, positive thoughts!

But she is trying to get some advice, without discussing it with anyone who might know this family, which is a good and positive thing, so it's not helpful to leap in with a load of slagging (most of which seems to be motivated by the posters' own experiences, which are colouring their responses, rather than from any urge to be genuinely helpful), just because you think the OP is a snob. Maybe she is. Doesn't mean this child isn't being neglected.

Mumsnet is getting really bullying lately, with certain posters just roaming the threads looking to leap on any tiny hint of snobbery or 'judgeyness', just so they can bang on, and on, and on, and on about how very non-judgey and non-snobby they are and how 'you don't sound like a very nice person'.

The irony...

Fecklessdizzy Mon 13-May-13 11:03:12

Feel for you OP

I was in a similar situation. Kid used to turn up at all hours, not dressed for the weather at all, ate like he'd never seen a biscuit. His mum worked all hours and his dad was unemployed but didn't want him hanging around at home. Trouble was my two didn't actually like him much and it was me that felt sorry for him and asked him in!

MissLurkalot Mon 13-May-13 11:18:09

OP, your post kind of made sense, and I would be concerned too.
But your subsequent posts on here afterwards do make you come across as quite judgemental.. Especially the apple comment!!!
I'm torn really.
I think if you don't really like the girl, and you will not allow any kind of reciprocation due to the child's father... I would walk away and leave them to it. However, if you do have genuine (unjudgy pants) concerns about this girl, speak to the school.
It all sounds a bit martyr ish to me to be honest, sorry OP.

nellyjelly Mon 13-May-13 12:37:14


IneedAsockamnesty Mon 13-May-13 12:48:25

Nelly, who is justifying?

Not one person has said that if the dad really is a drunk then that's ok.

fromparistoberlin Mon 13-May-13 12:53:51


posts like this always seem to get the OP slated

you are right to be concerned, its not ideal

IF you cannot riase with the mother (not read thread) then def report to SS

Oh dear, another sad case

nellyjelly Mon 13-May-13 13:16:38

Lots of justifying, lots of explaining away....

I give my kids KFC all the time and they are fine.

My son always has tatty clothes doesn't mean heis being neglected

I often fall asleep on the sofa,

He might have diabetes hence smelling of alcohol

(Just paraphrasing to avoid individual posts.)

It is about the bigger picture surely?

NotAQueef Mon 13-May-13 16:42:30

"threw a partly eaten apple in the bin"
Jeez, what did you expect her to do? Put the half eaten fruit back in the bowl, or force herself to finish it when she'd had enough?.

IneedAsockamnesty Mon 13-May-13 17:37:33

Nelly I'm very impressed that you think all a neglected child has to deal with is trips to KFC tatty clothing ( note tatty not inappropriate or filthy) and limited days out.

Lets hope your view on the world never changes and you never have to deal with real neglected and abused children.

nellyjelly Mon 13-May-13 19:39:44

You missed the point as am sure you know. Where did I say that tatty clothes or limited days out were all neglected kids have to deal with?

What I said was that many posters have tried to explain away many indicators of neglect. Not all of them or the most severe I grant you.

By the way, yes I have dealt with many, many cases of abused and neglected children. So spare me the sanctimonious tone. Sometimes many of the subtle signs were evident but sadly people chose to ignore or explain away. Just making the point that often there is a bigger picture, made up of lots of pieces of the jigsaw and it is not helpful to justify unless you know the full story.

nellyjelly Mon 13-May-13 19:45:44

BTW low level neglect is a real problem in our society, often ignored and not severe enough for intervention by children's social care. Psychologically very damaging however.

Is the child we are talking about here getting 'good enough care'?

IneedAsockamnesty Mon 13-May-13 20:47:00

That would very much depend on it actually being low level neglect as opposed to just someone with different standards.

CrapBag Mon 13-May-13 22:15:04

So why isn't the mother more concerned then? Why can't you say it to her seeing how she is your friend and this is her ex? Why is she leaving her DD with someone who maybe isn't up to looking after her? She obviously isn't seeing a problem.

Some of your stuff is crap and you are judging for no reason. Chapped lips? hmm FFS, my lips peal like mad. KFC, oh no. My DCs get McDonalds as a treat. They must be neglected. I have dozed off on the sofa, big deal, I wake at the slightest noise.

You clearly don't like this child, the apple thing was a horrible thing for you to pick up on. If you are concerned about neglect then how do you know she isn't hungry?

Cherriesarelovely Mon 13-May-13 22:40:47

I don't work for Ss sock I am a teacher so sometimes work alongside the ss in supporting children and families who are struggling. I said in my first post that I did think the OP sounded unkind and judgemental and that the kfc was irrelevant. Of course the ss would view her concerns sceptically if she talked incessantly about only those issues but those weren't the only issues she was concerned about.

Cherriesarelovely Mon 13-May-13 23:31:57

Completely agree with you nelly.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now