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To feel physically sickened about what happened today? DD's 'father' (who she's never met!) is one of the staff members at her after school club!

(176 Posts)
ScaryWary Fri 08-Feb-13 00:49:14

I'm still in shock, so sorry if this turns out to be a bit of a ramble. Not spoken to anyone in RL about this yet today, as every time i mention him to friends/family, they just rant and name call, whereas i need a sensible, outside perspective.

DD (just turned 5yo) has started going to a sports club in the gym hall after school for an hour on Thursdays.

Today was the first session.

When i went and picked her up, i noticed my ex - dd's father - was one of the sport coaches/staff members. He was dealing with the register and ticking off the kids' names as parents came for them. I didn't even recognise him for a moment. I called on dd then turned to tell him her name (so he could mark her off the register) and that's when we both seemed to recognise each other.

He looked terrified. Looked at me, then dd briefly, then turned away to another parent who was telling him to mark her child's name from the register.

I grabbed dd and bolted home with her.

She had no idea who he was. He, it would seem, had no idea who she was until he saw me and put two and two together. They'd spent an hour together not knowing who each other was.

I'm now sickened and in shock. I can't believe this has happened.

He is a vile, horrible man (well, he was to me anyway). He was abusive in our relationship, mostly emotionally, would force/blackmail me into having sex with him, called me names, hit me twice, trashed my flat one time because i was delayed amswering the buzzer to him (i was vaccuuming so couldn't hear it).

When dd was born, his anger problems worsened. I begged him to get help, he didn't. He'd invite his friends round to my flat, get drunk, while i was expected to look after newborn dd.

He was drunk one night and almost dropped her down the stairs when she was 3 days old. I burst into tears and he got angry with me for crying and 'making him feel bad'. He shoved me against the wall while i was holding her.

He left. A few days later, he was round for a visit (trying to make excuses for his behaviour/apologise etc). Stupidly, i agreed to let him stay the night on the sofa. DD was not sleeping through. She was crying all night. Partner stormed upstairs yelling at her to shut the fuck up, picked her up and started shaking her, screaming 'you've been fed and changed - what the fuck else do you want?'

I told him to leave. Only when i threatened to go to the police did he finally go.

The police visited me in the morning. They said it would be hard to press charges as it would be my word against his. I had taken dd to the docs that morning too and she was fine, no marks etc. He only shook her a little, not enough to leave physical evidence.

Anyway, never saw him again after that. He never made contact, and i never bothered to look him up. I changed dd's surname back to mine when she was 18months old, and gave her a new middle name, hoping this would stop him being able to locate her easily (e.g. seeing her name randomly in the local newspaper etc).

So today is the first time i've seen him since dd was a few days old.

What do i do? DD has autism, and her father's brother has it too. I can remember ex and his vile mother calling the brother horrid disabilist names, slapping him, telling him he's an idiot, teasing him about how he'll never have a normal life etc.

This man is an animal. No matter how much i complained in the past about his antics, it was always my word against his, so he has a clean police record. He was very clever.

Due to dd's autism, she finds social situations difficult. When i read the info pack for this sports club i thought it would be the making of her! She has been looking forward to it for weeks. She'll be heartbroken if i take her out of it for no (apparent) reason.

I'm so confused. This man shouldn't be teaching in schools He shouldn't be around kids. Especially mine. But i'll look like a maniac if i go into the school and reveal his past when i have no proof.

What if this makes him suddenly decide he wants to be a part in dd's life? What if he tries to make contact?

I feel scared about taking her to school tomorrow. After i'd left, he could have went and spoke to the Head about dd for all i know. He could request to see her school record etc. I feel so powerless. How can a man - a stranger to dd - be allowed to just waltz back into her life so easily?

DD is desperate for a father figure. I've never had another relationship since her father (who was my first). I think she notices she's the only child in her class with no dad. SHe constantly quizzes me about him. I try to give honest, neutral answers. 'He didn't want to be a dad' 'He and Mummy didn't get on very well.' 'Your very lucky because you have a mummy, and some people don't have mums or dads at all.'

If she ever got wind of that man being her father, she'd be all over him like a rash.

My stomach is in knots.

Told you this would be a ramble.

ISeeSmallPeople Fri 08-Feb-13 10:51:22

Are you at work, or can you go back now?
I'd take DD out, explaining to the Deputy that you are aghast at her unprofessional response. Arrange the very next appointment with the Head. And tell DD she's having the day off with you just because it's a lovely day. Go to the cinema, take her to McDonalds, don't stress her out about it.

Yes, the deputy was in the wrong. But, I wouldn't get into the bigger 'what ifs' with the school at this stage (what if he wants parental rights etc) - I would deal with the issue as it stands - ie he's in school, how will they protect her. The bigger issues (parental rights, whether you want to/can press charges at this stage) can wait. One step at a time....

LittleChimneyDroppings Fri 08-Feb-13 10:52:39

Shes wrong. Not you. She should have taken your dd out of the class until a solution was reached with the head.

Write an itinary of everything that happened with ex, the episodes of violence, police, deedpole etc in date order. You may not have enough proof that it did happen, but head can't prove that it didn't either. And its obvious there is a problem. Tell the head its a safeguarding issue, and you want to know what steps are going to be taken in school, and out. Because you ex having access to personal data could also put your dd at risk out of school. And put it a conplaint about tge deputy in writing too, whilst you are about it.

LittleChimneyDroppings Fri 08-Feb-13 10:53:01

*complaint

ScaryWary Fri 08-Feb-13 10:54:29

It's only on until 11am. So will be finishing round about now. I'm in tears. I feel so useless, and feel like i've lost my dd.

Do you think i should have taken her from school? Argh, why did i let the depute brush me off so easily?

I know that if he ever wanted to have contact with dd, she'd go off with him without a second thought. She is so in love with the idea of having a dad. I feel so sick. How can this even be allowed?

pigletmania Fri 08-Feb-13 10:54:53

Just read your update, I most defintely go to a solicitor and seek legal advice now he is on the scene. Go to CAB as well

kalidanger Fri 08-Feb-13 10:56:05

You can whisk your baby out of school today and have the weekend to think about this. She doesn't have to be there. You're get mother and can go and take her home.

Might a session with a family law solicitor help clarify things? I think proper advice is the way to go.

Mosman Fri 08-Feb-13 10:56:28

I have documents, but nothing substantial. All of it boils down to my word against his

and there lies your problem, when you're in the thick of these things you don't think getting that incident number, making sure the police follow up, asking the GP to make notes etc is important but it often is because without it what can you expect the school to actually do. He's CRB checked and you're not on paper you see the problem.

MariusEarlobe Fri 08-Feb-13 10:56:34

I think I would have turned round and taken dd home to be honest, not that I'm blaming you for not.

Even if there had been no violence, he hasn't had contact for many years and dd doesn't know who he is, things have to be handled sensitively.

My ex teachers sport and has little contact with dd, doesn't know where we live or what school and I dread this happening.

BreconBeBuggered Fri 08-Feb-13 10:59:12

Second getting independent advice. The depute sounds worse than useless. I might be inclined to go back to school in the meantime and remove DD for today, for your own peace of mind, and ask when the sports coaches are returning to her school. They need to take you seriously.

ScaryWary Fri 08-Feb-13 11:04:37

Yes i'm working from home just now, got a few customers coming and collecting things from now until hometime.

My fear is that i could ask for dd to be removed from the club (which is a huge issue if there are to be more of them like today taking place during school hours), and my ex could turn round and say 'i give my permission for dd to stay in the club.' That's why i'm seriously terrified. He has as much say into her life as i do! What's to stop him just going there and taking her out of school early?

I have to get to a lawyer. But i think that could do more harm than good. Ex won't like the fact i will have more 'rights' than him if i were to get a residence order. He'd try and get a contact order just to make it more equal. That's the type of person he is. Always has to be in power.

I can't belive he even went back there today! Is he seriously trying to act like nothing has happened? Just treating dd like any other child, hoping i'll not say anything?

I'm so confused. I wish i knew what he was thinking.

ISeeSmallPeople Fri 08-Feb-13 11:06:06

You are not useless, & you haven't lost her. She's your daughter & she has no idea who this man is. Even with PR, he couldn't just take her out of school, she doesn't know him!

It doesn't matter that she did this sports class today. Ideally, yes, you hit have felt better if you had taken her straight out, but the bitch deputy threw you.

Take her out now if you want to. Give her a big hug, & have a lovely weekend.

Make an appointment to see GP, solicitor and then Head from Monday, in that order. And I wouldn't send her back in until you've spoken to the Head.

MissAnnersley Fri 08-Feb-13 11:06:52

If you are in Scotland, in the absence of the head teacher and an unsatisfactory meeting with the Deputy Head, you should phone the Education Department and ask to speak to one of the managers. There should be someone available to take your call.

Thumbwitch Fri 08-Feb-13 11:07:03

I agree with the later posters - you need to get some legal advice ASAP. Your ex may continue to want nothing to do with your DD, but you can't be sure of that - so you need to have contingency plans in place, especially because she has the "dream father" thing going on.

I read your OP with my jaw hanging, going "Fuuuucccckkk!" in my head - your updates have done nothing to diminish that feeling.

And yes, I would be taking her out of the sports club and even considering taking her out of the school, the borough/town/Council district etc. that he covers (depending on how easy that would be with work restrictions etc.)

MissAnnersley Fri 08-Feb-13 11:08:14

Yes, I agree with the legal advice too.

Buzzardbird Fri 08-Feb-13 11:09:23

Could you speak to the Police for advise?

Surely their Child Protection department will be able to help you?

LadyFlumpalot Fri 08-Feb-13 11:09:52

If I were you, I would go get her home now and tell the school that she will not be going back until such time as the school take your concerns seriously.

On the one hand I want to tell you to give this guy a chance, he may have changed, he may regret his past actions. On the other hand I want to tell you to go grab your daughter and protect her for all you are worth.

VanCampsPorknBeans Fri 08-Feb-13 11:11:01

Can you talk to him? Find out where his head is. You are both adults. You may even be able to come to an agreement that he will not inform dd. I don't think you risk anything by talking to him directly.

MrsDeVere Fri 08-Feb-13 11:11:33

What is the best thing for your DD?
Would being in such close contact with her father be in her best interests?
If the answer is no, the contact must be prevented.

The school MUST work with you to manage this.
I can understand your panic and distress.
You will have to be very strong and assertive. Write down what you want to say. Talk about the 'best interests' of your DD.
Use the word 'safeguarding' .
Ask about their safeguarding policies.

You are not a vengeful ex trying to keep a father from his beloved DD.
You are a mother who is trying to protect her child and herself from a man who has been abusive.

This is not the time to work out if he is a changed man. That can happen later if necessary.

Buzzardbird Fri 08-Feb-13 11:11:40

Agree with smallpeople. He couldn't take your DD out of school without your written permission anyway could he?

Mosman Fri 08-Feb-13 11:12:30

I would get to a solicitors and ask for an emergency court order, for sole custody/residency whatever they call it these days. About £4,000 I think, that'll be the best money you've ever spent.

RedHelenB Fri 08-Feb-13 11:13:03

You are jumping to all sorts of conclusions!

The most likely scenario is that your daughter has had a fun time doing this session & that's all. If he wanted contact with her surely he could have had it at any time in the last 4 years?

kalidanger Fri 08-Feb-13 11:13:40

Please don't be terrified of him. Get advice and know the legal position.

This is quite a Big Deal, darling. You can bring your DD home and cancel work stuff and clear today for planning and assessing the situation. You don't have to be brave and keep on keeping on and coping, because that's what you do because you've always done it. And fucking good for you. But you can HALT today and start getting this sorted to your satisfaction.

VanCampsPorknBeans Fri 08-Feb-13 11:16:44

Mosman no court order can stop this man from telling DD he is her father. Op needs to find out his intentions before going off and aggravating the situation. More to gain for OP if this man agrees on his own accord to leave DD alone. He may even be willing to sign over his parental rights so he will have no obligation to pay child support.

MariusEarlobe Fri 08-Feb-13 11:16:55

buzzard I was told by school if he turned up with proof of pr that they wouldn't stop him taking my dd but would ring me to tell me. sad

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