Sad for DSS as although he acknowledges they were alienated, he still has to protect the dysfunction

(6 Posts)
TravelAndAdventure Tue 07-Aug-18 11:57:15

DH has been alienated from his teenage children, DSS 17 has seen this for what it is and is now back with us, in fact living with us for half of the week term time. He acknowledges all the tactics his mum used (hiding phone chargers as punishment for the kids phoning their dad, lying about money/gifts given for birthdays, encouraging the kids to think/talk of DH as a 'hillbilly' - not sure where this comes from, maybe because he's picked up some great stuff in charity shops in the past!)

Anyway DSS has come so, so far in realising the dysfunction. When he first got back in touch with us his mum removed his bed and put it in the loft, he had to sleep on the sofa for two years and have counselling at school for everything that happened. He stuck firm to his decision though and hasn't built a close relationship with DH and I.
He, without doubt, can see that he is the black sheep to his mum just because he wants to know his dad.

Anyway he has had a girlfriend for a year and he feels he can't introduce her to us, despite him being at our house a lot because he chose to go to college in our town. It has emerged the reason is because his girlfriend's sister is best friends with his sister and they are all quite close, and if GF starts spending time with us then he is scared that alienated DSD 14 will wonder if she's missing out and want to come and see us too.

He obviously has painful first hand experience in the wrath that ensued when he broke the alienation and he doesn't want his sister to go through the wrath of their mother. He can see that he is protecting the dysfunction by doing this but feels that it's the best thing to do.

Totally up to him of course, and we wonder if he might regret it later, and even feel guilt about it. I guess we just need to let him do what feels best but it's just really sad.

DSD has also asked to see pics of DH but DSS won't show her in case it makes her want to get back in touch with her dad sad
It's not done for malicious reasons but just him doing everything to protect his sister from their mother's anger.

Just wondered if anyone had been through similar, I guess, just such a difficult situation.

OP’s posts: |
TravelAndAdventure Tue 07-Aug-18 11:58:36

Sorry, that should say DSS has built a close relationship with DH and I, not hasn't!

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T2705 Tue 07-Aug-18 12:35:04

flowers What a terrible situation, I feel awful for you and your family.

What is the situation for your DSS with his mother now? I wish I had some advice for you but I have no idea what to say. My gut would be for your DH to try and forge some contact with his DD as she clearly can see that he is not the way he has been portrayed but can understand your DSS's reluctance for her to incur the wrath of the mother.

TravelAndAdventure Tue 07-Aug-18 14:39:44

Thanks for your reply, DSS would like to live with us really but his mum would lose tax credits (and maintenance), she is struggling with debt and told DSS that if he moves in with us full time then she would be bankrupt, so he's really taken that burden upon himself. One good thing is that she recently put his bed back.

Very hard for DH to get to contact his DD as all numbers were changed (he was only able to make contact with DSS when by chance DSS crossed the road in front of our car). He doesn't feel able to go knocking on the door as DSS has made him promise not to. DSS even freaks out if he's at our place and DSD phones his mobile - in case she was to hear DH's voice in the background or vice versa. I think these things are triggering him quite badly, it's like fight/flight/freeze reactions

OP’s posts: |
MrsAird Tue 07-Aug-18 14:47:23

You could suggest DSS calls Childline and talks it all through with someone privately. His approach might be the best thing for his sister, but it might not be, and he could benefit from a discussion with a neutral person.

SandyY2K Wed 08-Aug-18 03:19:17

What a sad situation. A really terrible case of parental alienation.

If I was your DH I'd be seeking professional advice...perhaps from a family lawyer about how he might go about making contact with his DD from a safe distance, bearing her safety in mind.

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