Is my brother-in-law a paedophile?

(135 Posts)
Marmitelover72 Thu 29-Nov-12 10:56:40

Hi I'm not sure if I'm in the right forum section but desperately need some advice...sorry this is long!

I have 2 boys aged 2 and 4. Sadly my elsest has special needs, severe speech, language and communication disorder so very vulnerable. We live down south and as most of my husband's famIly live up north, whenever they come over they stay for a good few days. My husband is very close to his 40 year old brother and I have always got on fine with him. The kids love him as he's just like a big kid himself and gives them so much attention, chase, rumble and tumble, pretends to be spiderman, buys them gifts etc so you could say he's the perfect uncle. However something has been bugging me the last few times we have seen him. God I don't know how to explain this....

A few weeks ago when he was here he offered to change my 2 year olds nappy. As I was busy doing something else, I happily agreed to this . They were upstairs for a while so I went up to see them and he had removed my sons nappy but hadn't put a new one on.
So he was just wearing a little vest. They were sat facing each other on the floor playing a ball game. I asked him why he hadn't got him dressed again and he just said "I thought it would do his skin good to have no nappy on for a bit." I found this quite odd seeing as he's not even a parent. It made me feel uncomfortable somehow. I tried to put any negative thought out my head.

Then last weekend we went up to my husbands parents for a few days. As soon as we arrived, the boys uncle was already there waiting as he lives local to them. He was playing with them, tickling them as usual and they were loving it. After we had tea, my eldest said he needed the toilet and straight away he offered to take him. I said "oh don't worry, he can go himself". 5 mins later he offered to give them a bath. I told him no need as they had already had one that morning. Then when I went into our guest room to unpack a few bits and get their pyjamas ready etc, my youngest was running around in the nude being a looney jumping off the bed etc and the uncle came in and started playing with him, he then made some comment like "look at you with your willy out, do you want me to flick it?" My gut feeling is that something isn't right and I haven't stopped thinking about it. I haven't told anyone as firstly he hasn't really done anything wrong and secondly just because my gut feeling tells me this is wrong i don't have any proof. I can't even tell my husband as he will think I'm being ridiculous plus the last thing I want to do is split the family up. Just so hard knowing what to do as whilst I can't tell anyone, all I want to do is protect my children more than anything just like any mum would.

Another thing that is bugging me is when my eldest was just 2 years old (so a couple of yrs ago), he took him to the park one winter, they were gone for absolutely ages to the point where me and DH were worried something had happened to them both. When they returned my son was so so upset, i had never seen him this upet before, and I could not console him. He cried for 2 hours. When I asked his uncle what had happened to upset him so much he simply told me that he was really cold. I remember going mental at the time and saying to my mum something wasn't right!!!

Please can someone tell me what I should do. Is this inappropriate behaviour? Or am I being silly? And if you were in my shoes what would you do with such little proof?

Thanks for reading

I don't think he sounds quite right, I'd be concerned too. I think you need to talk to your DH sad

SavoyCabbage Thu 29-Nov-12 11:07:47

At the beginning of your post I thought you might be over-reacting but I didn't by the end.

I would be hmm if someone said anything about flicking a child's penis and the incident with your son being inconsolable after the park is worrying.

ZuleikaD Thu 29-Nov-12 11:11:40

I would trust your gut instinct. His behaviour is inappropriate. I would not leave him alone with your children at all, ever. He may not have any awareness that his behaviour is concerning, he may not understand it himself, in which case you need to tread very carefully indeed. I agree with Suzy - I think the first step is to have a word with your DH because you will need a joint policy of not leaving your boys alone with their uncle.

ScillyCow Thu 29-Nov-12 11:13:52

I wouldn't leave him alone with your children.

Agree with DH and be really firm on it.

Tread very carefully and trust your gut instinct.

ZuleikaD Thu 29-Nov-12 11:25:53

Thinking more about this, I wouldn't torture yourself with what may or may not have happened on the park trip two years ago. Your DS may have been upset because he was away from you for so long. As for the rest, though - as I said above, I think this needs some attention.

Acandlelitshadow Thu 29-Nov-12 11:31:13

Trust your guts.

Never leave your boys alone with this man. Talk to your dh and make sure he does the same.

SolidGoldYESBROKEMYSPACEBAR Thu 29-Nov-12 11:37:46

Agreed: don't leave your DC alone with this man. And if he offers to do things like take them to the toilet, say No loudly and clearly. It might also be a good idea to talk in public among the family about how you are teaching the DC about boundaries and their bodies belonging to them, so no touchy-feely stuff please.

If this man's a predator and self-aware, he will realise you are onto him. If he's thick and socially inept, he will still get the message that you are not going to let him behave inappropriately round your DC.

You are right, though, that there is nothing much you can do WRT involving police or SS on such slender evidence.

tiktok Thu 29-Nov-12 11:42:51

OP - you have more than your gut instinct to go on. You have clear evidence that his behaviour and what he has said is highly inappropriate and worrying - anyone would think that, just from what you say.

The tickling thing is a common strategy used by people with a sexual attraction to children - of course it is also used innocently enough, but coupled with the other behaviours and what he said to your ds, would be sufficient to concern anyone.

It's worrying you can't tell your husband, though - why not? Perhaps show him this thread?

You are not being ridiculous. It is just about possible you are wrong about this man's motivation, but you are not 'ridiculous' to be worried. Not in the least.

bellarose2011 Thu 29-Nov-12 12:00:25

you are not being ridiculous, this is worrying behavoir.
there has been many times in my life i had wished that i had followed my gut instinct and 99% of the time i was right. our mothers instinct is there for a reason.
at the end of the day if you never let your children alone with him again and your wrong then its not a big deal.
if you ignore your instinct and your right the right the results could be terrible.
you don't have to tell anyone else in the family (unless you know he has contact with other kids?)
but you have to tell your husband, like someones already said, show him this thred?

Marmitelover72 Thu 29-Nov-12 12:03:33

Thanks ladies , am reeling at the the fact that my gut instinct is probably right. I know what you are all saying about telling DH, the problem is our relationship is in such a state. All the stress we have been through with finding out our eldest has a communication disorder, it's been heartbreaking and stressful sorting out statements, school etc and as a result we gave grown apart and argue so much. Im scared this will finish us off. And then if we do split, I won't be able to protect my kids when he takes them up to see family. He won't want to believe that his brother is like this, why would he. I'm still in shock myself at what's going on

rubberglove Thu 29-Nov-12 12:09:31

I think, often in our culture, we are taught to distrust instinct. We like facts, hard evidence.

However there is something more to life, humanity has a rich history of intuition. Trust it and do not leave this man with your children.

Levantine Thu 29-Nov-12 12:10:57

So sorry to hear that op. do you think your DH has any of the same feelings as you at all, or would a discussion come totally out of the blue?

Marmitelover72 Thu 29-Nov-12 12:14:43

Levantine, DH husband has no idea! He has even invited him down to spend Christmas with us as he is single and he feels sorry for him

bellarose2011 Thu 29-Nov-12 12:20:28

its a hard situation but you have to tell your DH, i would imagine that if you tell him everything you have put in your original post he will think about it.
he might not agree but if you tell him this is how you feel he has to respect that.
you have to do everything in your power to make sure that your kids are never alone with this man again.
if it comes down to it and your DH won't agree to keep them away i would personally tell the whole family.
they might all hate you but its a small price to pay for keeping your kids safe.
and if the uncle really hasn't done anything he will be so mortified about it HE will make sure his is never alone with the kids again.
i know that might seem a bit over the top but this is so serious, and i think you have very good reason to be worried.

bellarose2011 Thu 29-Nov-12 12:21:22

you have to tell your husband ASAP, you can't let this man stay in your home.

Levantine Thu 29-Nov-12 12:29:35

You must tell him. Tell him te facts, what you heard bil say. He may not want to hear it but he won't forget it.

tiktok Thu 29-Nov-12 12:30:42

I'll say it again....the OP has facts and hard evidence. No well-meaning adult person suggests a 4 year old child invites them to touch their (the child's) private parts, or draws attention to their private parts, whether as part of a 'game' or not.

Even if all the other stuff about nappy changing and bathing and taking to the toilet is open to a more benign interpretation, that 'invitation' is clear as day.

The man is 40 - he's gonna know the score. OP, you don't need to rely on your gut instinct to know he is bad news. Your DH has to know, and he may be disinclined to think the offers of nappy changing and bathing are innocent, but the words he used in your hearing cannot be.

tiktok Thu 29-Nov-12 12:32:03

disinclined to hear the nappy changing stuff is not innocent, sorry.

Mu1berries Thu 29-Nov-12 12:35:50

that's weird. my brothers would never in a million years have offered to give baths or change nappies. encouraging children to take off their clothes is a normal thing............ but what to do? hmmm I don't envy you.

Mu1berries Thu 29-Nov-12 12:36:47

sorry, i mean it's not a normal thing. most people would say to kids 'put your pants back on now!'.

MUM2BLESS Thu 29-Nov-12 12:50:37

Its a sensitive one as its your husbands brother. Speak to your husband and let him know how you feel. You both can decide what to do.

Not a nice situation to be in, I send my support at this challenging time.

eggsandwich Thu 29-Nov-12 13:48:08

I fully understand your concern's, as I too have two children, one of which has SN and is non verbal, you will have to be extra vigilant when in Dbil company, as his behaviour seem's more than a little worrying to me. I fully understand your unwillingness to approach your Dh about your concern's, especially as you are both going through a period of grieving which we went through when our Dc1 was diagnosed some 10 years ago, it particularly hit my Dh very hard, myself well i'd be lying if I said no it didn't affect me, but then I always felt there wasn't something quite right. Trust me things will get better! With regards to your Dbil I would try and pick the right moment with your Dh to air your concern's, he may get cross and angry with you for even mention such a thing, but at least you have planted the seed of doubt in his mind, and he will possibly not knowingly watch his Db more closely. Remember that your children are young and vunerable, you have to be their eye's, ear's and voice.

ZuleikaD Thu 29-Nov-12 14:27:14

tiktok is absolutely right - the biggest red flag is your BIL suggesting to your DS that DS would like BIL to touch DS's genitals. Massive, massive red flag.

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