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to consider moving because of what happened to dd (7)?

(74 Posts)
helpmeplz Mon 08-Aug-11 19:21:36

A week ago my 7 year old told dh and i that our neighbours grandson had sexually abused her the day before. She is a very brave and confident girl and i think it was only because of that, that the incident was only a mild one. Basically the boy (14), asked her several times to touch his penis ( she refused) but he then masturbated in front of her untill (in her words) the white stuff came out. He asked her sexual questions also.
Now dd appears totally unscathed by this ordeal and is carrying on as if it never happened. I, however am a wreck. I appreciate that this event could have been far worse but for me it is bad enough to consider moving. I will give u a few more details.
Basically the boy has very mild autism, he attends a special school but has been given freedom to go where ever he wants on his own, including cycling the 3 miles from his house to his grandad. Since we moved here a year ago he has been so helpful, from fixing the girls bikes to mowing our lawn etc. There has never been any indication that he would do this.
His grandad is our landlord and lives righr next door, we share access and a front massive garden area (we have our own enclosedback garden but the acess goes righr past it and is only a waist high wire fence)
His parents ans grandparents are keeping him away at the moment but i dont know how long that can go on for, given the close relationship he has with his grandparents.
The incident itself happened at the bottom of our shared front garden, so everytime i step out the door i see the place and i cant get it out of my head. Should we just up sticks and move or is that teaching our kids to run away from their problems. The matter is being reviewed by the police but in the meantime i feel miserable in the home i used to love. Yet dd is happy. Am i blowing this out of proportion, should i just get over it and move on or move out. What would u. do? Sorrt its so long

activate Mon 08-Aug-11 19:23:38

I'd move if you're not tied to where you live

but not link it to what happened

just look

LineRunner Mon 08-Aug-11 19:25:02

I don't understand what 'The matter is being reviewed by the police' means? Your daughter will have had to give a statement with full suitable adult support, possibly on video. This is a complex business and should be done with professionals as soon as possible. Has none of this happened? Where is your family liaison officer and have you contacted victim support?

thisisyesterday Mon 08-Aug-11 19:25:07

i am not sure i would move, although i can understand (to some extent) how you feel...
but i think time will help.
you KNOW the risk this boy poses and both you and his grandparents can ensure that his doesn't happen ever again.
that's a good thing isn't it?
am glad it's being dealt with by the police and that his parents and grandparents are taking it seriously.
maybe they would also be willing to review the fence and put something higher up just to make you feel safer?

i think if your daughter is happy there then you should stay. it would be a huge upheaval for her and if she doesn't want to go then it could end up seeming (to her) like you are punishing her...

ChaoticAngeltheInnocentOne Mon 08-Aug-11 19:26:51

I'd move too.

shuffleballchange Mon 08-Aug-11 19:27:00

Not really sure what to say, just want to offer my support really. If you can afford to move then if I were you I would, if it were me I couldnt carry on living there. Glad your DD isnt really bothered by it all, she's too young really understand what happened, thank goodness.

LynetteScavo Mon 08-Aug-11 19:27:22

sad for you and your family.

Moving won't teach your kids to fun away from their problems....there is no reason why they need to connect the two things.

It sounds to me like you might need a fresh start, though. You need to weigh up weather it would be more harmful to your DC to stay where you are, or go through the hassle of moving.

helpmeplz Mon 08-Aug-11 19:30:35

Sorry i did not explain well, yes dd has fiven a formal videod statement, and we have been allocated a family liason officer and social worker. The sw is coming to do a home visit on wednesday. We met her last week and she was lovely and helpful.
I do not want my daughter in any way to feel she is being punished, which us why i am reluctant to move, but a big part of me wants to scoop up my children and move them so this is behind us.

youmeatsix Mon 08-Aug-11 19:30:55

i think now its in the hands of the police, i would be moving
the outcome of all this could strain the relationship between you and the grandparents

helpmeplz Mon 08-Aug-11 19:33:05

We have also moved 3 times in the last 4 years due to short term lets. Our current landlord is lovely and promised us a long tenancy.

JustFiveMinutesHAHAHA Mon 08-Aug-11 19:34:36

I'm sorry this has happened sad

If the boy was NT I'd be wanting 'something to be done about it' - but being as he isn't I would just want some assurances that he understands how wrong this was and that the people looking after him (including his school) are aware that he doesn't understand how wrong this was to do - so hopefully he's not in a position to do anything similar again. However, as the police are already involved you may not get much say in how it proceeds.

I presume you have talked to DD and told her that he shouldn't have done what he did, but because of his SN he didn't really realise it was 'wrong' to do it in front of her and he didn't mean to upset/scare her.

Does she know that this is something all boys do - just they mostly do it when they are on their own?

It's one of those things that you can't 'know' until you are actually in the situation, but I think I would try to get past it. DD seems OK and you moving could really make it much bigger than it is (for her). If in a few months you still can't get it out of your mind you could look at moving then and for her the two don't need to be linked.

Once again, sorry you are all going through this - but yes, be thankful she was strong/brave and it wasn't any worse.

iggly2 Mon 08-Aug-11 19:37:41

I would move but link it to something else. She does not understand now but will do in years to come. The relationship with your neighbours will not be repairable. Hope your daughter recovers.

chelen Mon 08-Aug-11 19:37:46

YANBU, I would get looking, don't move somewhere rubbish in a rush but find somewhere nice. No need to stay somewhere with bad memories for you. Your daughter will most likely settle quickly in a new home and as long as it has some positive things 'nice garden' 'more space' 'nearer to park' or whatever then it won't be a punishment.

Sorry this happened to your family, pleased it is being pursued.

Birdsgottafly Mon 08-Aug-11 19:41:58

What the boy did may not be connect to his SN. It would be wrong to suggest to the DD that the boy didn't understand what he did was wrong because of his SN, this puts across a big prejudice and creates fear.

OP i think you could look about at possible accomodation, but wait for the SW to get back to you, they will be doing an investication to make the distiction between his SN and level of responsibility. It is very early days and you will be feeling very raw about it all, you need to think about how you will feel, if he is able to visit his GP's again.

helpmeplz Mon 08-Aug-11 19:43:12

Justfive- no she doesnt know about masturbation yet 7 i felt she was too young and havent brooched the subject with her yet. And she knows he may not have realised that it was naughty. But... after he did it he told her to keep it a secret which implies he did know it was wrong. And he also told her this story about how he swallowed a stone and that this is what he had to do to get it out. It seems quite thought through and manipulative dont u think?

saggybaps Mon 08-Aug-11 19:44:09

I'm sorry, but I'd move too. It's not running away from a problem, it's just protecting your children & getting away from a horrible incident.

I'm so sorry this has happened to your little girl, she sounds very brave.

Birdsgottafly Mon 08-Aug-11 19:46:23

OP i take it that you have told the police and SW, this. Yes, it does sound contrived. This may 'hit' your DD later, take it at her pace, i would just keep it about not keeping secrets and inappropriate touching.

He may be a continued risk but this may not be connectedto his SN.

LineRunner Mon 08-Aug-11 19:47:37

Glad you are getting police support.

helpmeplz Mon 08-Aug-11 19:53:42

Yes, i am worried about the effect that this may have on her as she grows up. And i dont want her to be afraid to go out her front door alone when she is older in case he might be there. I am trying really hard not to project my fears onto her as she is doing so well. the family liason officer and social worker have both complimented her on what a bright and bubbly girl she is. I dont want anything to quash that.

mouthwash7 Mon 08-Aug-11 19:57:04

I think I would move if it were possible. I don't think I'd be able to relax knowing it could happen again and I'd be worried about my DD being constantly reminded of it by his presence.

emmanumber3 Mon 08-Aug-11 19:57:09

I tend of agree with what BirdsGottaFly said re: this incident not being linked to having mild autism.

I have a son of the same age, also with mild autism & there is no way I would consider an incident like this linked to his SN. In fact, he is so conscious & shy of his body that even getting changed for PE is an issue - let alone getting his bits out in front of anyone in innocence. Also, he would know very well that what you have described is wrong.

As far as moving is concerned, although I totally understand how you feel about the constant short-term lets I'm afraid I wouldn't be able to stay at that property with the boys grandparents not only next-door, but also your landlords. I know that they have done no wrong themselves but I would need to be away from the family in order to move on. Just my opinion though obviously. Good luck with what you decide xx

kevlarbrassiere Mon 08-Aug-11 20:01:12

I have a son with autism, and it makes me mad to think that the seriousness of your daughter's experience could be in some way diluted, due to his lack of understanding.

His going to the trouble of inventing a 'reason' for doing what he did (i.e. swallowing a stone), is a bit suspicious. Mostly because most kids with autistic spectrum don't 'do' secrets very well (never in my case), so I am surprised/suspicious of what exactly was going on?

We do struggle with appropriate behaviour at time. Rules have to be carved in stone, and consistently reinforced behaviours from everyone (long term effort, hopefully it will pay off).

My view on ye moving house - I wouldn't. It is your daughter's home, why should she have to move, particularly if ye are all well settled, etc.

My experience has been that once a behaviour has been identified, then usually work can be done (if parents, etc. are willing) and the world around you becomes better/safer.

As an abuse survivor, I feel that others underestimate how resilient children can be. If they are happy and secure in general, then I feel that abusive behaviour, like what she experienced, can be understood as being what it is - totally wrong and unacceptable. With good input from the professionals about her, she will be able to deal with this, as will you too.

janelikesjam Mon 08-Aug-11 20:01:26

Please don't worry about your daughter OP. She will see it as a strange upset, if anything at all. The main thing is you love her and care for her. Don't upset yourself any further. The police are handling it as is right. You can make a decision later. I wish I could help more.

Fiendishlie Mon 08-Aug-11 20:12:16

I would move too, definitely.

cheekytinker Mon 08-Aug-11 20:18:13

I would move. I can remember with awful clarity the moment I realised that the man who assaulted me years earlier hadn't weed on me but had masturbated on me whilst I stood next to him too frozen to move. I was very naive when it happened and only realised sat in a lesson at school after listening to the boys talk. Awful truly awful. I would not like your daughter yo have the realisation in later life about what exactly happened to her coupled with the fact you chose not to move. I would not risk how your daughter might take the fact you didn't move. I am so sorry if this is a tad incoherent, I kept my assault a secret for well over 10 years and it did affect me greatly despite it not being a severe assault. It was the fact I didn't feel safe as it was in public in a place I trusted.

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