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Instant and violent dislike of my mums new boyfriend, especially around the children.

(56 Posts)
SundaysGirl Tue 26-Feb-13 10:23:36

My mum has met and moved in with someone very quickly, within six months. When she first met him I was immediately uncomfortable because of the comments she made about him being domineering, wanting things his way, making sure she was aware of his life and how she ought to fit in with it. Since she has been with him she has quickly gone from her usual self to everything being a 'unit', much as you would expect from a long standing married couple.

She has stopped coming over to the town where all her children live, cancels plans and whenever any of us ask her if she wants to do anything her first reaction is 'I need to check what partner is doing first'.

All of this is worrying in of itself and I feel he is very controlling.

However my main issue is my reaction to him around my child and my nieces and nephews. I have had a basic gut reaction of extreme aversion to him, to the point where him picking up my son and cuddling him made me want to leap over the room and hit him.

When I saw him with all the other children my reaction was the same. He spent the first time he met them all focusing almost exclusively on them, asked them all for cuddles and had them all sat on his lap. When I raised this with my mum and said I found it inappropriate to be holding them, cuddling them, resting his hand on the youngest one's bottom and generally forcing hugs on them on the first meeting she said he had raised this himself that evening and was 'worried' the children had all been so 'affectionate' to him, but that 'they came to him'.

My mum is now being pretty forceful in asking us all to visit him at his house with them both there, my sister went and said she felt uncomfortable and that it was similar behaviour.

I am basically refusing to have him anywhere near my son, I cannot explain how strongly my reaction is to him, I feel sick even thinking about him being in the same room as my son and this was my instant reaction and has only got worse and more strong.

Since obviously all his behaviour can be explained away innocently I am in the position of coming across hysterical but I cannot emphasise how strong my feelings are enough on a gut level, and also I have NEVER had this reaction to anyone before. I have been 100% fine with other men my mum has seen over the years and how they are around my son.

So I guess my question is two-fold. Have any of you ever had such a strong reaction like this and what did you do about it? And also what should I do moving forward. She is now getting divorce papers for her current marriage (my step dad) and I fear a swift engagement is on the cards.

Am I massively over reacting?

joanne1982uk Tue 26-Feb-13 14:57:25

i wasnt talking about this incident in particular. Personally i think its the media scaremongering

yellowbrickrd Tue 26-Feb-13 15:01:57

I don't believe you would have had an overwhelming feeling like this from someone who is 'just friendly'. From reading your descriptions of his behaviour it's very clear something is wrong so it must have been far more alarming to be actually be there.

I thnk it is very sad for your Mum that he's got his claws into her but there might be a benefit in refusing to allow him in your life - perhaps he will realise he's not going to get at the dc and drop her. I would keep reiterating to her that you don't trust him, even if she is brushing it off now she's going to have to take it seriously eventually when she sees you are not going to change your mind.

In fact you've nothing to lose by speaking very directly to this man - tell him that you are never going to allow him to be around the children and that you dislike and distrust him - you don't have to accuse him of anything directly to make it very clear that you know what he's up to.

Noren Tue 26-Feb-13 15:02:48

Trust your instincts. You might find The Gift of Fear a good thing to read. I would keep the kids away.

joanne1982uk Tue 26-Feb-13 15:05:30

I'm always interested in what happens with threads like these 6/12/18 months down the line etc

What if you contact the police and they advise they have no record of any incidents involving him. What if he makes your mum very happy and becomes a very good hisband to her? what if in controlled environments he turned out to be great with the kids.

Again this isnt a dig at you its jsut hard in this day in age to trust people and gut instincts can be wrong. I just hope it all works out for you and you all get a happy ending

snuffaluffagus Tue 26-Feb-13 15:18:49

Is your sister reacting in a similar way? Is she going to keep her children at a distance from him?

izzyizin Tue 26-Feb-13 15:21:23

he had raised this himself that evening and was 'worried' the children had all been so 'affectionate' to him, but that 'they came to him' but, as you've said, they clearly didn't and that is a massive red flag I can see waving above his head.

As for your dm being only interested in meeting up if it is out with him or in his house that's got the alarm bells ringing, particularly given the speed with which she's moved in with him before the ink on her divorce papers is dry.

I would suggest that you act on LemonDrizzled's advice and, in the first instance, have a word with your local community police officer about your concerns with regard to this man.

You can invoke Sarah's Law which is the Child Sex Offender Disclosure scheme (CSOD) whereby parents have the right to whether individuals who have contact with their dc are known to the police for offences of this nature.

In addition, should you live in Greater Manchester, Gwent, Wilts, or Notts, you can invoke 'Clare's Law' or the Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme (DVDS) which these regional police authorities are piloting until September of this year and which gives the partner or a person they know, i.e a friend or close relative such as yourself, the right to know whether someone they are in a relationship with has a violent or abusive past.

However, it's probable that your local community police officer will be able to put your mind at rest, or not as the case may be, without you having to make formal applications for any relevant information about him.

It should be noted that a recent High Court ruling on an appeal from a sex offender has given those who are the subject of enquiry under the CSOD scheme the right to make representations to the police before information about them is disclosed but, as this does not mean that the police will disclose any details about the enquirer to them, your confidentiality is assured.

If I were in your position I wouldn't hesitate to find out everything I could about this man.

DialsMavis Tue 26-Feb-13 15:21:35

I did a course about child sex abusers (cheery) and we were told that they often say/think that children are willing because they "come on to" or flirt with adults. I am certainly not a paedo around every corner type at all. i think you should trust your instincts

izzyizin Tue 26-Feb-13 15:26:58

She has stopped coming over to the town where all her children live, cancels plans and whenever any of us ask her if she wants to do anything her first reaction is 'I need to check what partner is doing first'

If the above inspires some to suggest you override your gut instincts and ignore the collective wisdom of this board, I despair hmm

Iseeall Tue 26-Feb-13 15:40:58

I second the poster who suggests you find out more about this man. Have you met his sons/daughters/grandchildren? what about his workmates? Has your mother met them. What happened to his previous wife/partner. You may of course know all of this, however I agree with all the posters that say trust your gut reaction. You should keep your distance from him but do keep in contact with your mum. Nothing about this suggests a happy ending

magimedi Tue 26-Feb-13 16:05:09

I understand about the paranoia about 'paedoes everywhere' but so should he! Any sensible man would not act as he did at a first meeting with children. So I do think you are right to trust your instincts & I would see what you can find out about this man. Google, Facebook, PCOS etc. You are protecting your children, it's your major duty as a mother.

knitknack Tue 26-Feb-13 17:10:29

Yes - I have had a gut reaction like this (only once) and yes, I was right. I can only describe it as my 'mother bear' moment! I think it's instinctive - so trust yourself. Your poor mum! I'm so sorry - try not to shut her out, but equally don't let him be around your son. Will she accept you visiting on your own? I think you need to use your spidey senses about HER well-being as well!

ModreB Tue 26-Feb-13 17:44:17

I had this with my DM many years ago. My eldest DS's (now adult) were both under 5yo. I had the benefit hindsight knowing that my DM had failed to protect me from another of her BF's (yes, she has had some real peachy relationships)

I told her that as she was unwilling to keep me safe when I was young, I was now unwilling to trust her to keep my DS's safe. I got the denials, tears, tantrums, being told I was a liar and unreasonable. I knew what I knew.

I stopped all unsupervised contact with my DM, even if she said she would see the DS's alone I just didn't trust her after an incident when she promised that the BF was not going to be at a family event that I couldn't go to, and then tried to get my DS's to lie to me when he turned up.

Trust your instincts. If you are wrong, you are wrong, the only hurt is a hurt ego on his part and your DM part. If you are right just think of the consequences of not acting. Hurt feelings on the part of your DM are much preferable to the possibility of long lasting damage to your DC's.

SundaysGirl Tue 26-Feb-13 17:59:33

Hi all sorry for not being back sooner.

I am going to ask someone who is a police officer to make some background checks but obviously as with the CRB and so on they are only as good as if anyone has been caught for anything.

I do think it is sad yes in a way that suspicions like this raise their heads, but (and of course you all have to take my word from this but it is the truth) it is the strong aversion and gut feeling that bothers me the most. If it didn't I would probably explain away all these things and not be so bothered.

As to his history all I know is he has a grown up daughter with no children and his wife died some years ago. He like things the way he likes them and is loud and overbearing and expetcs to be the centre of attention and have things his way when meeting people.

Sister feels the same as me. My brother who has the other kids has only met him once and was busy preparing dinner and did not see anything with the kids but said he would take concerns on board but was basically too busy sorting out other things to even speak to him.

He is also a scout leader and has been for a number of years from what I can make out.

IME your instincts are usually right in these situations. If it were me I'd keep my DC well away and try and avoid seeing DM unless she's alone. It's a difficult situation because you don't want to hurt her feelings or make false accusations or anything but I think it's your duty to protect and educate your children from/about these things (although I'd keep it light and hypothetical) - when it comes to their safety everything else takes a backseat IMO

Granitetopping Tue 26-Feb-13 19:09:27

I hope I'm not going to offend anyone - but the fact that he is a Scout Leader is a HUGE red flag to me.

ScrambledSmegs Tue 26-Feb-13 19:20:17

If he's a scout leader I presume he will have been CRB checked? Not that I think you're wrong, OP, I agree with everyone saying trust your instincts.

Granitetopping Tue 26-Feb-13 19:33:05

A CRB or DBS as it is now is only a snapshot of an individual on any given day.

Was he new to the area? How did your DM meet him? Does your DM have any money or property? Do you think it's a bit convenient that his wife died some years ago and he has no children?

You are right to go with your instincts.

Dozer Tue 26-Feb-13 19:38:27

If the OP reports her concerns to the Scouting Association, will her identity be hidden if they follow up?

Hissy Tue 26-Feb-13 19:54:22

Jimmy Savile would have passed a CRB.

Trust your instincts, they are never wrong. EVER!

FastidiaBlueberry Tue 26-Feb-13 21:30:55

"What if he makes your mum very happy and becomes a very good hisband to her? "

He won't. Men who make women happy don't control and be domineering and isolate them from their families (which is what he's already started to do by making it so that she can't see them without him).

"what if in controlled environments he turned out to be great with the kids"

He wouldn't. If he's a scout master, he's been trained on how to interact with kids in a healthy, empowering way. The fact that he doesn't use that training, speaks absolute volumes about him.

Alliwantisaroomsomewhere Tue 26-Feb-13 21:42:25

Stay away from him. He sounds vile.

AnyFucker Tue 26-Feb-13 21:42:53

a "controlled environment" ??

what's one of them then ?

prison ?

You can't "control" a grown man's environment unless you place sanctions on his liberty. You can control your dependent children's safety though (as far as is possible), by listening to your instincts and ignoring frankly dangerous witterings from randoms on the internet

Dromedary Tue 26-Feb-13 21:44:44

I agree - his being a scout leader is not a good sign.

PoppadomPreach Tue 26-Feb-13 21:45:15

Please trust your instincts. We have instincts for a reason.

Gut reaction is really just a combination of your experience, skills and knowledge. Please trust it. Touching young children in an affectionate manner in plain sight can be all about breaking down boundaries and is a well known tactic in relation to abuse. i absolutely do not see paedophiles round every corner, and believe utterly that men can be as caring, nurturing and gentle as women in relation to children but i have red flags waving everywhere.

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