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WORRIED SICK How best to protect my kids from Ex's partner.

(25 Posts)
1DAD2KIDS Tue 16-Feb-16 13:15:55

Ok basic background. Last year my wife had an affair and left me for this man. We have a 4 year old girl and a 10 month old boy. I raise the kids full time and she lives two hours drive way with this man in the towns he grew up in and where her family live . My concern is with this man being around my kids. These are the reasons why:

He is an ex who originally dated her when she was 17 and he was in his 30’s. Now to me there is something worrying about a 30 year old man who wants to date a girl who has barely just finished school. Especially when the girl is your step cousin.

She told me that he used to smoke a lot of cannabis and this has resulted in his having issues with paranoia. She says he doesn’t do it anymore but talking to his family he has been see collecting little packets from other people know in the area for this stuff.

She said he used to be violent towards her.

Her family are also very concerned about him being near the kids. This concerns me a lot considering they are this man’s family too and are the best people to know what he is like and what is going on up there.

The current situation is that the kids stay at their grandparent’s house when they go up to say with my ex. The trouble is my ex has started to say she wants her time alone with them at her (the other man) house. She is there mum and I want her to have quality time with them. My problem is I am not happy for the potential of my kids being home alone with this man. Are my concerns valid or am I over reacting?

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Pootles2010 Tue 16-Feb-16 13:22:51

I would say the first two points are not valid, unless he is doing something a bit harder drugs wise.

The third point (re. previous violence) is a very valid one, and tbh I would be most worried about that one. I'm not sure how much say you will be able to have, but sure others on here will be able to advise. Good luck!

1DAD2KIDS Tue 16-Feb-16 14:32:02

Definitely concerned about the violence. But my main worry about the first point is he is my ex wife's step cousin and has know her since she was a little girl. How long before she was 17 had he had desires on her? Was he just hanging back till she reached the age of consent? How do I know he'd not been seeing her before that age? She could have lied about the age to protect him. And if he could fancy my ex when she was so young how do I know he's not a threat to my daughter? I know I could be wrong but my kids are my world and how could I live with myself if I put them in harms way. Plus I think it's a valid concern not to want my kids round drugs (even soft ones.

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Pootles2010 Tue 16-Feb-16 14:41:32

Well yes fair enough to be concerned, but as you've no proof nothing you can do. He didn't actually do anything until she was 17, as far as you know.

Social services wouldn't be concerned about suspicion of cannabis use, I wouldn't have thought.

I think you will muddy the waters by focussing on the first two points.

HeddaGarbled Tue 16-Feb-16 23:30:42

Would you consider paying for some legal advice to see if there are any steps you can take to limit their contact with him?

MadamDeathstare Tue 16-Feb-16 23:38:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

1DAD2KIDS Wed 17-Feb-16 04:51:37

I don't know it's so tough. The kids may be safe at his house and I may be over reacting. It's the not knowing that does my head in. I want her to spend more time with them and if it wasn't for the stuff she told me about him I wouldn't be worried. To muddy the water further she is a compulsive lier and very minipulative. So its hard to know when she is telling the truth.

I talked to her about it last night and raised my concerns. She said he is a totally changed man and that she would never put the kids in danger. The trouble is I don't trust her judgement any more and little she has done resently seems to be in the kids interest. Like I said her family recon he is still on drugs. Most people don't on here seem to think soft drugs are ok but not me, at least not round children. How can you take care of very young kids when high. Also even if he is ok in the head and stable now like she says what about the future?

She said its not working out them saying at her mums on a weekend as they argue all the time. She said the alternative is her coming to my house and saying with the kids there. They would be safe but it would be hard for my recovery having my abusive ex wife round. I know we are only talking about them staying round his house the occasional weekend. I realise in time we do need to sort a proper solution. They are her kids too but I no longer trust her judgment. All I want to know is the kids are safe. Do you think I should say ok to it and keep a close eye on it or would I be failing to look after my kids?

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Pootles2010 Wed 17-Feb-16 09:19:58

Hang on a minute. She is abusive? When you say recovery, what exactly do you mean?

Sorry I know this is very close to the bone, but if she is abusive I think it may be her you need to worry about?

1DAD2KIDS Wed 17-Feb-16 11:56:27

She no monster but she spent alot of our relationship telling lies to try and drive a wedge between me and my family and friends. She hit me on a couple of occasions and thrown a few objects at me in the past. Im a big lad and she never hurt me bad. I just was used to it, thought that what she is like when she cross. I have only just become aware of the years of lies because I trusted her. It lost me some friends I belive at the time were telling lies about me. When I say recovery I mean trying to free my self from her control and work out who I am. I talk to her daily but having over often may make it a little harder for me to move on.

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1DAD2KIDS Wed 17-Feb-16 12:01:30

She loves the kids. I don't think she would ever do anything deliberate to hurt them. It mainly her judgement and desision making that worries me.

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Pootles2010 Wed 17-Feb-16 12:53:54

I agree with Madam death stare - look into supervised access. She was violent, she has a temper, you need to look at her rather than the partner.

You need to get some proper advice on this one.

Keeptrudging Wed 17-Feb-16 13:07:59

I think you are right to be concerned about all the points you make. Cannabis is not harmless. My ex was a heavy cannabis user and nearly killed me when he had a psychotic episode. He was paranoid/volatile, hardly a 'laid back' harmless dope smoker!

Your ex was abusive/violent to you. That would be a huge worry. The age gap between your ex and this man also would be. IMO there's something lacking in a man in his 30s pursuing a teenager. I would also think the same if the genders were reversed. He may not be a paedophile, but he certainly has poor boundaries.

I would stick with your current arrangements. Your ex needs to be responsible for how those visits go, as in trying to minimise the arguing. Why is there so much arguing, is it mainly caused by your ex (who sounds like a volatile person)? If so, all the more reason to keep these visits supervised, whether that is within the family or at a contact centre. It wouldn't be healthy for you to have them at your house, you need to look after yourself so you and your children can move on/recover.

Pootles2010 Wed 17-Feb-16 13:25:17

Keep I agree there is a strong link between drug use and mental health issues, but no one really knows if the drug use causes the ill health - correlation is not causation & all that.

Anyway my point was, social services will not intervene on the basis of cannabis use, so OP is better to focus on the other issues that are a bit more concrete.

I think you may have a point re contact centre - perhaps thats a good way forward. Definitely agree re not at your house - thats no good to anyone.

juneau Wed 17-Feb-16 13:29:00

You ex physically abused you and is a compulsive liar.
She is now back in a relationship with her step-cousin, who she first got together with when she was 17 and he was 30-something.
He was a user of cannabis back then and quite possibly is now.
He also has paranoia and has been violent towards her in the past.

Bloody hell! No wonder you're worried - I would be too. Please take some legal advice. Two violent people (one paranoid, the other a compulsive liar), and two small, defenceless DC is a very scary proposition. You should not have her staying in your house - definitely not - but I think you need advice on how to control both her and his access to your DC. They are too little to be left at the mercy of those two.

Fourormore Wed 17-Feb-16 13:33:55

The partner is a red herring here.
Either your wife is a responsible mother who provides adequate care of the children and this includes protecting them from any risk her partner may present, or she isn't a responsible mother and doesn't provide adequate care of the children in which case you shouldn't be sending them to stay with her in the first place.
Get some legal advice. Some of the stuff you've written isn't at all relevant.

1DAD2KIDS Wed 17-Feb-16 16:27:01

I suppose fourormore that is a simpler way to look at it. If she would have them in his house then that would raise the question is she fit.

She says he is fine and his ex is happy for his kids to stay round his. His ex is a school teacher and seems responsible. But for me it's not good enough. I have to know the kids are safe and I don't trust her.

Just to clarify the the arguments at the grandparents house are between her and her parents. It upsets the kids and that's why she says they can't stay there. At the moment the best solution I can see is that she stays at mine to visit the kids. At least I know their safe.

I don't want to have to set up any supervised visits. The kids should be able to spend lovely free time with their mum. I was happy with her staying with them at the grandparents house. I would be happy with them staying somewhere alone with her. Despite how she treated me I know deep down she's not a monster and she loves them kids. She just not quite right in the head. She had some very hard things happen to her as a teenager. But I don't like the idea of the two of them together with my kids. He may be a good guy now but I wouldn't risk it.

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Fourormore Wed 17-Feb-16 17:50:14

Then you need to get some legal advice to see how likely a court would be to agree with you.

BoneyBackJefferson Wed 17-Feb-16 18:17:07

His ex is a school teacher and seems responsible

I'm not sure why you think that this is relevant.

annandale Wed 17-Feb-16 18:28:53

One of the things a parent should be able to do is manage their emotions enough so that they are not having frequent arguments around young kids (including when they are supposedly asleep). Also, what are the arguments with her parents about? The fact that she has a history of violence is crucial.

I am sure she loves the kids but what you post raises big questions about whether she can put their needs first. I would talk to a SHL (shit hot lawyer) tomorrow and get advice. Tbh I would strongly consider reporting the domestic violence you have experienced to the police. You can't protect children completely on your own from someone like this.

1DAD2KIDS Fri 19-Feb-16 07:49:48

Thanks for the advise. Also thanks for helping me see that I am not going mad these are real concerns. Unfortunately my ex's legacy is that I still doubt my own judgement of people. I keep a good relationship with her and of course the kids want to see her.

Now I have had time to think my plan is stand my ground and keep the status quo for now. As the current arrangement I am happy with. Meanwhile I will get some league advise for a plan B in cause she does not accept this or it all blows up. The trouble is the kids have many years of growing up to do. All I can really do is stay calm, take every day as it come and prepare for the worse but hope for the best. Hopefully I can get my way tactfully and calmly without starting ww3.

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Keeptrudging Fri 19-Feb-16 07:56:07

Sounds wise. You've got a lot of years of this ahead of you unfortunately, you need to keep finding the path of least harm, which it sounds like you're doing.

wannabestressfree Fri 19-Feb-16 07:59:40

It is hard and I think you are doing the best thing by your children. I know you Don't want to set up supervised access but if your concerns aren't being listened too then you have no choice really.
It sounds like you are better out of things.

gamerchick Fri 19-Feb-16 08:11:14

I dunno it sounds as if you get your way an awful lot. Stop insinuating that her partner is a nonce and stop telling people shes not right in the head. Some of the stuff youve come out with sounds like what my abusive ex has come out with.

If youre really just worried for the kids then you wont care about upsetting the applecart. I wouldnt be happy about the dope but seemingly you have no actual proof aside from hearsay that hes still smoking it.

Get legal advice but dont come out with some of the stuff you have here, stick to facts.

TheTigerIsOut Fri 19-Feb-16 08:28:49

Ok... You are very concerned about your kids but do not want supervised access. You wan't her to have time on her own with your kids... On your terms.

Sorry to say this, but as Furore said, the new partner is a red herring. You either trust her or you don't. And it seems to me you trust her as long as you are dictating the terms of the time they spend together.

Things don't work like that, sorry. And working against that will bring you a lot of frustration and heartbreak, as it is not for you to dictate the terms of contact time unless you are prepared to spend some costly time (financially and emotionally speaking) in court and accept that if you want that, you will need to prove, with substantial evidence (of the hard kind, hearsay won't get you anywhere), that there is an immediate need for supervised contact to protect your children.

IMO you will need to wait and see, because unless you find substantial evidence against your ex (yes, the mother of your children) or until something untoward happens to the children, you have no case.

I'm sorry, I know first hand it's crap, but it is pretty much the way things work. What I would say is that keep the arrangement as it is, they don't have much time with their mum so it is unlikely things will escalate quickly when they are spending so little time together.

1DAD2KIDS Fri 19-Feb-16 13:10:47

The thing is she loves the kids and obviously the kids love her. In an ideal world I want her to have time with the kids. In an ideal world we would have a 50/50 thing. She decided that she preferred who new life without the kids and there is the distance thing. It would be nice to have a little bit of time to my self too. The problem is I do not trust her and her ability to put the kids first. I want to be fair as they are both our kids and we both deserve to enjoy them equally. But my main responsibility is to make sure the kids a safe. I could never live with my self if I failed to protect them.

Gamerchick. I am only telling the situation as it is. Personally I feel a 30 year old man who pursues a 17 year old he's know from a baby is a little dubious at best. I am not saying he's 'nonce'. Also there was some horrible things from her youth and I dont know who was involved so that worries me. But I don't facts, she never shared with me and of course she has lied so much over the years to minipulate me I will never know what's ture or not. I know the world isn't black and white and that relationships can be very diverse. But to me his conduct is worrying. There is something not normal about the way she sees the world and the things she does. It's not normal, that's the way she is. I am not having a go at her but she has lots of issues that she has never tackled I think. I think that is why she is how she is. I married her knowing she was difficult but I loved her. So I am to blame for getting myself in this mess years down the line.

Can there be a middle ground? I hope so. TheTigerIsOut i dont want to dictate the terms. Supervised visits would be ultimate dictatorship the last thing I want is supervised visits. It would be horrible to say your not a good mum and you can't be trusted on your own. How horrible would that make a parent feel? They are our kids and should know we both love them. It would break my heart to be in a situation were both of us can be normal parents. But what do I do if she wants them in his house for weekends. Would I be a responsible dad if I said yes OK? Am I over reacting? Can a middle ground or compromise be found? Is it right to ask for some middle ground? Maybe she is right and he is ok. Therefore she is not putting them in harms way? But then what about his paranoid eppisodes, can they come back, are they dangerous?

I want the best outcome for both of us and the kids. I just need to know that what ever we decide it's safe for the kids. They are the most important thing in the world to me. Its my responsibility to keep them happy and safe.

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