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Is it ever right to continue contact with a convicted paedophile?

(70 Posts)
CoshPunt Sun 18-Sep-16 19:41:05

Will probably name change after this. Quick background, a male relation (by marriage) has been convicted of historical child sexual abuse within the family (happened around 30 years ago) and is currently in prison. His wife is standing by him and has stated that if anyone doesn't wish to see him after he has served his time then they won't see her either, as she has to support him, and she doesn't want to be anywhere he isn't welcome.

She argues that it was 30 years ago, he's a changed man now, has never done anything since, she asked him if he still feels this way towards children and he assured her that of course he doesn't (and when questioned on this she is very determined that he would tell her!). Then she points out that the victims are part of the side of the family that she doesn't get on with anyway, and "if you only knew what they did you'd understand how I felt" etc etc. Oh, and they went to social services once 20 years ago with the information, and were supposedly turned away and told they didn't need to do anything.

Trying not to reveal too much as I don't want it to be too "outing", but there is a religious element and the culture at the time was heavy pressure on the victims forgiving and moving on with their lives.

Basically, this family member is quite close (they both were) but unfortunately we never knew anything about what happened (am late 20s, so my generation had it 'covered up' in the family and it wasn't really spoken of) so grew up with them and whenever there was a family crisis, they were always there first to help... Essentially quite a big part of our lives, holidays away together, etc.

Anyway - he should be out in approximately 2 years, and there is some pressure that basically everything should go back to normal after, as he's "paid the price" and "what else can he do?". I am of the stance that I never really want to see him again (especially now that I have a DC), but it's being heavily hinted now that I'll never get to see that relation again either, and I'm basically turning my back on them after "everything they've done for us."

Not quite sure how to proceed - is it unreasonable of me to feel this way, as I am increasingly being made to feel that it is? Assuming he has never done anything again, is it possible to forgive someone? Another comment I have heard is "how long do you continue punishing someone", but I don't know if this ever could be forgivable? How do I even answer that question?

Tiggeryoubastard Sun 18-Sep-16 19:45:03

I work with offenders. If you ask me to be honest to your question specifically - no, I wouldn't. And his wife could fuck right off now. I could say a lot more but that's my short answer.

SheldonsSpot Sun 18-Sep-16 19:45:05

I would happily cut all contact with this paedophile and his paedophile supporter partner.

How could you ever allow your child to be in his company? Urgh.

SlinkyVagabond Sun 18-Sep-16 19:48:07

Fuck that. Paedophiles are liars and masters of manipulation. His wife is blinded by this. I'd cut them both off without a blink.

Soubriquet Sun 18-Sep-16 19:49:00

No way would I stay in contact

If she says it's both or none, I'll say none

My children are more important thAn hurt feelings

FruitCider Sun 18-Sep-16 19:51:01

I also work with offenders. I would have no problems cutting BOTH of them out of my life.

TwigTheWonderKid Sun 18-Sep-16 19:52:35

If he had committed the offence very recently would you/they feel differently? I wonder if the fact it happened 30 years ago has somehow clouded your family's views of this? They've known about it, some of them have been guilty of covering up from what you say, so they will doubtless want to justify their guilt by mitigating it in this way.

Brankolium Sun 18-Sep-16 19:53:07

Oh gosh, please don't feel obligated to have your precious DC spending time with paedophiles.

If you wanted to be diplomatic on some level, you could write to them and express gratitude for all they did for you in the past, wish her/them happiness for the future, but firmly state that the sentencing categorically changes everything and that you can no longer associate with them, especially given that you now have children yourself. But you don't have to even do that, that's just if you wanted to.

Floggingmolly Sun 18-Sep-16 19:53:49

The victims were from the part of the family she doesn't get on with anyway?? Bin the disgusting pair of them.

sashadasher Sun 18-Sep-16 19:54:19

A big no contact vote from me, people can not change their sexual nature if they saw no wrong in sexual contact with children years ago even though they might fight the urge ,would you really risk your children?I csn see why anyone would and makes my blood boil when people say they have done their time, what about their victims?they unfortunately do their time to the day they die,sadly I know many.

HermioneWeasley Sun 18-Sep-16 19:54:41

I wouldn't see his enabling wife even if she didn't say they were a package deal.

You don't owe them anything

Coconutty Sun 18-Sep-16 19:55:35

Nope, wouldn't let him any where near my family.

SlinkyVagabond Sun 18-Sep-16 19:55:48

Posted too soon. There is no forgiveness for child rape. I'd cut off every member of my family that suggested it.

AnchorDownDeepBreath Sun 18-Sep-16 19:56:32

Fucking hell. No, I wouldn't, and I wouldn't welcome his partner guilting me into it either. That's not right at all. It's her that has said she won't maintain a relationship with anyone who doesn't welcome him back - she didn't need to enforce that if she didn't want too. She knew she'd lose people if she made them choose.

Your children come first.

CoshPunt Sun 18-Sep-16 19:58:45

Just to add: my DC never has, and never will see him, and I don't want to see him again either.

I would feel the same if it was recent or not, I don't personally think a paedophile can change the way they feel though perhaps they could suppress it with help? (Not that I really have any knowledge about this). But regardless, he did act on it, multiple times, and is now serving time in prison for it. I do think the fact that it wasn't recent is another way the wife is minimising it.

Why do some women do this? She is so defensive and protective of him, she acts almost as if they were the victims in all of this (having to face court proceedings, prison etc as pensioners) and is of the belief that most of what he's done has been "embellished" by the victims, and it's not as bad as it really is. My mother lives in hope that one day the wife will suddenly see sense and snap out of it and leave him, but I just can't see it happening.

ptumbi Sun 18-Sep-16 19:58:47

The victims were from the part of the family she doesn't get on with anyway?? - Presumably because they 'dragged his name through the mud', made accusations towards him (that were covered up), didn't just STFU ...

Bin them both. SHE needs to realise that her actions, jsut as much as his, have consequences, especially for those with children.

augbd Sun 18-Sep-16 19:58:56

No way in hell would I be going anywhere near either of them. The victims were from 'the side she doesn't like anyway' ?! She is almost as disgusting as he is.

EttaJ Sun 18-Sep-16 19:59:03

Both cunts. I'd have nothing to do with either of them.

TheGruffaloMother Sun 18-Sep-16 20:00:39

A family member is essentially emotionally blackmailing you into getting chummy with a convicted paedophile. If I were you, I'd make my opinion about both of them painfully clear. The passage of time doesn't erase some things.

Brankolium Sun 18-Sep-16 20:02:23

Also, how is the fact that he no longer 'feels like that' about children supposed to make it in any way better?

It's basically saying it hasn't happened again because he hasn't had the urge to molest any more children (if we even believe that he no longer feels like that). So what if the urge comes back? A load of dangerous rubbish. A paedophile can never be around children again.

Your relative must have her her in the sand if she thinks you'll deem her husband more important than your own children! She sounds either as bad as him or brainwashed/vulnerable.

Canyouforgiveher Sun 18-Sep-16 20:03:50

I'd be more likely to cut off contact with her because of her minimisation and victim blaming. If she said "he did it. I am staying married to him. I understand how people will feel but hope you will stay in contact with me" then I would be more likely to meet up with her.

She is pushing for a situation in which she and her husband are the victims. This will allow her to continue living in denial. So she has created an ultimatum in which she can say to herself "they all cut me off too" as well as the stuff she has already said "they exaggerated, they targeted us etc". You don't really have to care either way.

MephistoMarley Sun 18-Sep-16 20:07:03

Child sex abusers aren't really fixable to be honest. Once they have overcome all the hurdles to abusing a child they are highly likely to do it again. So firstly, it's more than probable that he's abused other children in the intervening years, secondly, he's a risk of doing it again, and thirdly, he did it in the first place and that's enough to never want to see him again. I wouldn't.

ImperialBlether Sun 18-Sep-16 20:12:07

So she knew accusations had been made years ago?

He's obviously had a sentence of a few years - given how hard that is to get now it's clear that the victims were believed. Was she in court every day and thought they were exaggerating, or did she think they made it up altogether? It's so hard to get a historical rape conviction; the jury were clearly convinced of his guilt.

I wouldn't want anything to do with either of them. I know it must be really difficult if, say, it's your mum, but the way she's tackling this is completely wrong. What will happen if he dies before her? She'll be left with no family at all.

softboiledeggs Sun 18-Sep-16 20:13:44

I wouldn't have anything to do with them ...30 years is a long time indeed but it's a life sentence for the real victims, 30/40/50 years they will never forget I'm sure.

CoshPunt Sun 18-Sep-16 20:17:50

He admitted to it, but told her that he didn't do it all, of course, which is why I imagine he got convicted. There were 3 victims that spoke out and a few others that had experienced "inappropriateness", and wrote supporting statements.

She acknowledges that he has done SOMETHING, but I imagine she has minimised it down into the smallest thing in her mind, as all she seems to do is focus on the times that they supposedly 'embellished', listing again and again it wasn't possible because of x y or z.

They have 2 adult sons and grandchildren - one adult son is supporting them and is essentially her lifeline, the other has backed right off and is very quiet about it all, whilst his wife has said she doesn't want to see either of them. The grandchildren support them and even wrote supporting character statements for him in court.

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