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Ex routinely neglects our children - what can I do about it??

(44 Posts)
PhoenixRising85 Sat 25-Nov-17 21:20:40

Hi everyone,

So it's been a while since I've posted. I'm hoping that someone can help me. Help my daughters really.

Long story short: my violent, abusive, narcissistic ex bullied me into a Child Arrangements Order back in 2015 for contact arrangements for our two daughters.

I have an ongoing and growing list of evidence that at best he's still his old lazy self and missed the memo on how parenting is done; at worst - flat out neglect of our daughters, verging on abuse.

He has them alternate weekends. Our daughters are subjected to the following and I don't think I know about it all:

> lack of adult supervision - he sleeps pretty much the whole time they are there
> malnutrition - he feeds them when he feels like it. When he does feel like it; it's fast food or just utter crap.
> poor hygiene - they don't get bathed, showered or even washed - both the girls hair hadn't been brushed over the last visit - the youngest was still wearing the same hairband she'd been wearing when he picked her up and I had to spend the best part of two hours cleaning them and deep conditioning their hair (I've taken pics).
> no activities/time out of his flat
> late dropping them back more and more frequently
> really late bedtimes - my eldest doesn't get to bed before midnight most of the time - again: due to his neglect
> racist comments - I'm black, he's white and on top of being a narcissist he is also racist - in his bids to get at me (he's still pissed because he no longer has control of me), he's dissing half of them; often with comments about their hair (they totally get that from me); and also t
> co-sleeping with the youngest in particular - she's started wearing pants in bed (I've put a stop to this but the fact that she wants to is raising alarm bells)
> derogatory comments about my husband to be - the girls' future stepdad who they adore.

This is just a few of the things I know about. He deliberately doesn't engage in proactive parental discussion with me on any topic. He also makes sure I can't contact them on his weekends, so they literally have no protection.

I've not spent a weekend worrying about them and never has he returned them without walking proof that I'm right to worry. Unless his Mum comes to spend time with the girls - she looks after them while he does nothing and this appears to now be the only time the girls aren't dreading going to his.

What can I do? He made for damn certain he kept me in line with this court order and I really don't know where to start.

PhoenixRising85 Sat 25-Nov-17 21:22:43

*>racist comments about the fact that they aren't totally white.

DullAndOld Sat 25-Nov-17 21:27:02

how horrible.
Could you take it back to court?
Would you want to get SS involved?

ThomasRichard Sat 25-Nov-17 21:29:22

Get advice from a solicitor, sharpish. Your poor DDs sad

RandomMess Sat 25-Nov-17 21:29:48

How old are they now? I would speak to NSPCC and see if they can help you with the terminology you need to go to SS?

TeachesOfPeaches Sat 25-Nov-17 21:30:36

Do you think your ex is sexually interfering with your daughter? If so then you cannot let them be alone with their dad, it's your responsibility as a mother to protect them. Take it back to court.

PhoenixRising85 Sat 25-Nov-17 21:31:17

Hi DullAndOld,
Thanks for your speedy reply!

Could you take it back to court?
I hope so - I really need to work out what my angle would be as well. I've found forms for amendments to the Child Arrangements Order, but none of the categoric reasons for amending seem to apply to neglect/abuse of children by the other parent....need to do more research.

Would you want to get SS involved?
No. I'd never WANT to. BUT, this is becoming a very real possibility. I'm calling them Monday to see what advice I can get and how/if they can get involved...

PhoenixRising85 Sat 25-Nov-17 21:32:39

Hi RandomMess,
They are 5 and 8. Thank you - I'll do that. I was looking at their website just now actually.

Hassled Sat 25-Nov-17 21:33:22

The fact that your youngest is wanting to wear pants in bed when previously she didn't is really concerning. Please call the NSPCC for advice.

Wishingandwaiting Sat 25-Nov-17 21:34:05

Wtf
You just throw infact that it would seem you suspect sexual abuse.

Contact SS on Monday first thing. Please

PhoenixRising85 Sat 25-Nov-17 21:37:31

Hi TeachesOfPeaches,

Do you think your ex is sexually interfering with your daughter? If so then you cannot let them be alone with their dad, it's your responsibility as a mother to protect them.

I would like to think not. But this is a man who I know thinks he can do what he wants and when he wants. I am going to struggle on this without proof. My eldest is the one who told me about him co-sleeping, my youngest hasn't. During this last weekend, my ex and our daughters happened to run into my husband-to-be, my ex told both of my daughters they weren't allowed to acknowledge him. My eldest did. My youngest didn't so in recognising this theme where my youngest is very much doing what her Dad says (as she would at 5), I wonder what else he's told her to keep quiet about, ya know?

Take it back to court.
How?

PhoenixRising85 Sat 25-Nov-17 21:38:17

Hassled - I agree.

PhoenixRising85 Sat 25-Nov-17 21:39:35

ThomasRichard, thank you. I will. Do any of you know offhand what will likely be the next steps upon calling SS, NSPCC and seeking advice fro a solicitor - just so I know what to prepare for?

Gobletofgin Sat 25-Nov-17 21:40:23

You can just stop contact if they are not safe with him, then if he wants contact to start again he can make an application to the court. You will be respondent and you can say in court why you stopped contact. You can inform that courts that you are not adhering to the court order for safeguarding reasons by phone but they won’t do anything unless he applies to go back to court to enforce it.
I am sure SS will give you this advice if you phone and ask for advice (I am a social worker)!

DullAndOld Sat 25-Nov-17 21:42:53

Yes stop contact.
there is emotional abuse, neglect of needs, and the bed sharing/pants thing.
Just stop it and let him take you to court, as Goblet said.

PhoenixRising85 Sat 25-Nov-17 21:43:04

Gobletofgin - thank you!

You can just stop contact if they are not safe with him, then if he wants contact to start again he can make an application to the court. You will be respondent and you can say in court why you stopped contact. You can inform that courts that you are not adhering to the court order for safeguarding reasons by phone but they won’t do anything unless he applies to go back to court to enforce it.
I am sure SS will give you this advice if you phone and ask for advice (I am a social worker)!

So you're a social worker - that's great to know. I have been in this predicament where he has threatened me with legal action in the past where I told him I would stop contact (this is going back some time now). If I just stopped contact - is there any weight in his threats?

PhoenixRising85 Sat 25-Nov-17 21:43:41

Yes stop contact.
there is emotional abuse, neglect of needs, and the bed sharing/pants thing.
Just stop it and let him take you to court, as Goblet said.

Thanks Dull.

Gobletofgin Sat 25-Nov-17 21:43:49

You will have to pay to see a solicitor so phone nspcc or Childrens services for advice but they will most probably tell you to stop contact. If he says he wants contact, say no and he will have to get legal advice or represent himself in court.

TeachesOfPeaches Sat 25-Nov-17 21:46:03

If you suspect your children are being abused and you still allow them to stay overnight unsupervised then this will reflect very badly on you. You're not protecting your children. Stop unsupervised contact and go back to court.

There are contact centres available if you don't want to stop contact altogether.

PhoenixRising85 Sat 25-Nov-17 21:46:51

OK Gobletofgin. That's my next move. Thank you so much! Thank you all! I'll keep ya'll posted but keep throwing in your insights if you have something you think I need to know about so I can protect my children - all advice massively appreciated!

Gobletofgin Sat 25-Nov-17 21:46:57

When he says legal action he means take you back to court, that’s fine, he can pay to apply or get a solicitor to do it. You can go to court and give the reasons why you have stopped contact. They will either ask cafcass or the local authority Childrens services to do a report and make a recommendation as what to happen next, whether they should have contact reinstated or not.

PhoenixRising85 Sat 25-Nov-17 21:49:10

By that, I mean advice - not lectures. Unless you're in or have been in this position and know exactly how to handle it. Thanks.

PhoenixRising85 Sat 25-Nov-17 21:50:15

When he says legal action he means take you back to court, that’s fine, he can pay to apply or get a solicitor to do it. You can go to court and give the reasons why you have stopped contact. They will either ask cafcass or the local authority Childrens services to do a report and make a recommendation as what to happen next, whether they should have contact reinstated or not.

Thanks GobletofGin - that's really helpful.

Wellandtrulyoutnumbered Sat 25-Nov-17 21:51:12

Agree with Gobletofgin 100%

becotide Sat 25-Nov-17 21:56:14

I have been in this position and I stopped unsupervised contact. I organised a weekly visit to a contact centre nd although he continued to be a bit shit there, he couldn't actually cause them any hard and there were other adults to step in.

He threatened all sorts of nonsense but in actual fact, we used the contact centre for years, and the youngest child ow only goes to his house for 6 hours on a saturday and the oldest won't go at all. My youngest is 11 and free to leave when he's had enough - can ring me etc.

So, it can work out in the end. My ex can be a half decent father for a couple of hours a week, and you might find things improve massively with drastically reduced contact.

RE the pants thing, although of course you do need to have the touching talk, it may just be that she asked to sleep in daddy's bed and he said "You've got to wear pants then."? This used to be a rule of my boys sleeping in my bed - allowed, but pants must be worn

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