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to think that my daughter's friend is not being looked after properly?

192 replies

poppymay13 · 11/05/2013 20:11

Her mum's at work most of the time and her dad is unemployed with a drink problem. The parents are not together but live together still. One day I rang at 930 inviting her out. Went to pick her up at 1130 & she wasn't ready cos her dad had fallen back asleep. So she was basically unsupervised. My daughter went there for tea a couple of weeks ago & she said they got KFC (ugh) on the way home & then fell asleep for the whole time my daughter was there. Needless to say she's not going there again. Pretty disgusted especially as I so often take his daughter out to save her from a dull day with him. She's got chapped lips, isn't fed very healthy food and dressed in tatty dirty clothes. I'm not snobby but I do think being regularly hungover or drunk in charge of a 7 y.o. is unacceptable.

OP posts:
Boomba · 11/05/2013 23:51

if dad has a drink problem, then the issue is with both parents whilst mum is leaving the child in his charge. they are both (theoretically) failing their duty of care

I think, if the child is being neglected because the parent is an alcoholic then there are other concerns immediately arent there. Falling asleep when drunk is very different to tired snoozing; so there is a danger there. Children of alcoholics witness things they shouldnt, feel guilty and cover up for the parent; taking on the 'adult' role....

If a child is neglected because a parent is depressed, its a different set of concerns etc

YesIamYourSisterInLaw · 11/05/2013 23:51

Posted to soon.
What I was going to say is instead of being resentful towards her think how lucky your dd is to have you and how horrible it must be for this girl. Childhood is supposed to be the happiest time of your life and home is supposed to be be where you feel safe, loved and secure

IneedAsockamnesty · 11/05/2013 23:53

Because the op has given no examples of actual neglect.

Sleeping with a 7 year old about is not neglect providing you don't sleep so deeply that you may as well to be there.

Chapped lips are not neglect

KFC is not neglect

Tatty not especially clean clothing is not neglect.

Not reciprocating play arrangements for a child's friend is not neglect

Your child thinking its ok to take an apple to eat whilst a guest in someone's house is not neglect

Neither is only eating half that apple.

The only way the one potential thing on this list may be genuine neglect is if its not a normal snooze on the sofa and dad has such a bad drink issue that he's passing out that would be neglect.

But if that's the case and he genuinely does have a drink problem that leads him to be passing out that the op has been aware about for years then why the bloody hell is he ok to look after her own child but none neglect issues ring her internal alarm bells and the actual issue doesn't,

Piemother · 12/05/2013 01:10

Poor supervision is neglect, actually.

PosyNarker · 12/05/2013 01:45

My DF has has an alcohol problem for most of my life. He is not an alcoholic in the traditional sense. In fact I've inherited his urges, like every other bugger in my family.

I was always safe. No-one ever took me on a car journey with a drunken driver.

Was it ideal? Oh hell no. That wasn't just down to dad's drink though. There was a shedload of weird that despite my middle class upbringing that made everything a bit chaotic. But we coped, because outside of wine and weirdness they were terribly supportive. I guess that's the difference.

IneedAsockamnesty · 12/05/2013 08:13

Pie. The op has not highlighted ANY thing that would qualify as poor supervision unless the dad is genuinely a passing out drunk.

Its not poor supervision to the extent of neglect having a snooze on the sofa whilst your 7 year old plays if dad had left them alone to go out it still would not be formally defined as neglect ( inadvisable but subjective) being actually passed out through drink for several hours would be.

That is why it is the only issue that matters.

But if he really is a passing out drunk it was not a issue when she knowingly left her own child in his care until the KFC and tatty clothes thing.this makes it quite likely that he is not a passing out drunk because what decent parent would allow one of those to collect there own child from school walk then to KFC and back and then have them looking after her with no other supervision for hours.

That's actually IMO worse than the mans ex leaving this child in his care as its quite likely that some well meaning person who thinks they know about things has probably told her she has little choice due to PR and rights but the op's child is not also his child she has no entwined back ground with him so no actual understandable reason to make such a crappy decision.

Of course its also likely the op did not make a crappy decision as the bloke is not actually a falling down drunk and that ( the only legit aspect of this being a real cp issue) is just exaggerated or malicious nonsense and he's just got different standards to the op.

LynetteScavo · 12/05/2013 08:25

So you are friends with this girls mother? Then why don't you bring the issues of dirty clothes and lack of supervision up with her?


Cherriesarelovely · 12/05/2013 11:35

Strange. Judgemental and unkind maybe but Op has said this man smells of alcohol when picking up the children, he went to sleep for the entirety of her Dds visit and he is frequently asleep during the day but she is not allowed to "assume" he has an alcohol problem??

I wouldn't let him pick your dd up again Op but I would carry on supporting the little girl in the way that you are.

Am really amazed that others don't see this as a concerning situation.

As to the other areas of concern...the kfc is irrelevant imo but being dressed in dirty, scruffy clothes day after day is not. It is completely different to wearing clean clothes and then getting them mucky throughout the day. I see children like the one you describe every day in my job OP and it is bloody horrible for them. They feel uncomfortable and other children notice. I think I would speak to the mum and the school if I were you.

FreddieMisaGREATshag · 12/05/2013 11:37

The point is, Cherries, that EVERYONE sees the concern if this man is stinking of booze when picking the wee girls up. but why did the OP let her child go if that is the case? The rest of it is all something being made out of nothing.

I had a doze on the sofa the other night whilst my kids were here. Doesn't mean I'm alcoholic.

Cherriesarelovely · 12/05/2013 11:42

No freddie it doesn't but presumably you don't smell of alcohol or regularly have to be woken up by your children late in the morning?

I agree she shouldn't have let her go as I have said but think given ALL the things she has said it does sound as if this man has a problem with alcohol. I cannot see why she would have any particular axe to grind but am well aware that in some cases people do.

FreddieMisaGREATshag · 12/05/2013 11:44

I do actually have to be woken at weekends, especially if I take my painkillers. And those same painkillers mean I sometimes sleep in the day time and might seem a bit uncoordinated and out of it at pick up time.

Which nosy parkers who don't know my situation might mistake for alcohol abuse.

Mintyy · 12/05/2013 14:15

I think LynetteScavo makes a good point.

As for the others insisting that there is nothing to worry about and you are just being bitchy and/or nosy ... I'm a bit speechless really. I hope it doesn't deter you from continuing to look out for this little girl (whether you like her or not) and to take matters further if you continue to be worried.

But ... yes ... a frank discussion with the Mum is a good place to start.

Mintyy · 12/05/2013 14:17

Did you all miss this part from op's post?

"Needless to say she's not going there again"

nellyjelly · 12/05/2013 14:47

Some of the justification for this man's behaviour on here amazes me. Yes maybe the OP is being bitchy and/ or judgemental ( though don't think she is IMO) but if she acts on her hunch that the kid is being neglected and she gets it wrong, so be it but is she is right and fails to act, a whole lot of harm will continue.

It is people not acting on hunches, fear of being seen as nosy or whatever that allows kids to continue living in crap situations.

IneedAsockamnesty · 12/05/2013 14:58

But why on earth did she let her go in the first place if as she claims she's known this for years.

Nobody's missed that bit

A woman who picks up her child from school at the same time every day always smells a bit of wine at that time of the day,she finishes work an hour before school pick up and has a small glass of wine with her lunch.she does not drink at any other time not even at the weekend or if she was out socially just one small glass every week day. Nobody what so ever has ever assumed she's a drunk.

Tatty clothing is very subjective the op did not say the child was filthy or smelly she did not say she is dressed inappropriately for the weather or her age range she didn't even say that the clothing didn't fit her only complaint about the clothing was tatty and dirty. As with all the other examples she gave they are very subjective and all will be based solely of different standards in many cases different standards does not equate to neglect nor does it equate to bad parenting its just different.

Mintyy · 12/05/2013 15:01

What do you think op's motivation is for posting Sock? None of us know this woman, the man or the child. The op does. If you cannot take what the op has said at face value ... then are you suggesting she is a troll?

IneedAsockamnesty · 12/05/2013 15:02

Hunches based on real things is what helps stop children living in abusive situations.

Reports based on silly judgey differences or without genuine reason or with malice is why it takes so bloody long to actually get people to respond to the real cases.

IneedAsockamnesty · 12/05/2013 15:14

Not at all minty I think she herself thinks its a very real situation and shes very worried about it if I thought anybody was a troll I would report the thread.

I think she quite probably deep down likes feeling superior to this man I expect she thinks her parenting style is much better ( it probably is) I expect she thinks that because her child dresses nicely that makes everything ok in her child's world. She may even have some misguided idea that she's doing the right thing or perhaps she just wants to have a discussion.

Bugger all wrong with that as I said earlier if you have concerns that are based on real issues pass them on to someone who is qualified to deal with it.

But work out yourself what a real issue is first because if you don't your concerns will not be taken seriously.

I expect most of this situation is just about feeling superior because to be quite frank if the only real issue is as bad as the op implies then what the hell was she doing sending her own child.

People make all sorts of judgements all the times and parenting is an easy target,its not unusual for some people to decide that unless you make the same parenting choices as them then your a crap or boarder line abusive parent ( I do it about people who smack,it does not make me right doing it)

HildaOgden · 12/05/2013 15:28

I think that possibly your friend should be worried about her daughter spending time with a woman (you) that dislikes the child so much,they would begrudge them an apple.

And if you really think it's a household of neglect,then you yourself are being neglectful of your own child by allowing them to be there without you.

Cherriesarelovely · 12/05/2013 16:23

Nothing to worry about then?! And anyone who is concerned enough about a situation like this to act is a nosy parker? Nobody is allowed to voice their concerns for fear of being called judgemental. I totally agree that Op should not let her child go there in future but to lambast her for wanting to voice a concern given what she has said about the child and parent is ridiculous.

Cherriesarelovely · 12/05/2013 17:08

When I have had to confront situations like this with families through work they are almost all upset in the first instance but quickly open to receiving support which is exactly what it sounds like this family might need.

Cherriesarelovely · 12/05/2013 17:10

And finally the part in sockreturning's lastpost about Op enjoying feeling superior to this man is incredible!

IneedAsockamnesty · 12/05/2013 19:48

Why cherries? Are you suggesting that there are not a great many people who enjoy feeling superior and its often the strangest things that tend to assist them.

Not one person on this thread has said its ok for him to be a drunk and that being one is not a problem. I even said if that's the case report.

But if she phones up mainly focusing on tatty but appropriate clothing KFC and chapped lips then I'm afraid the call will be logged very differently to how it should. If you work for Ss you should know that.

FreddieMisaGREATshag · 12/05/2013 19:54

Here's me.

Sometimes looks out of it at school pick up time. Smells of mints so could be to disguise smell of alcohol.

DD has chapped lips

DD wears clothes that are clean in the morning but she's a mud and filth magnet and is boggin by the time she comes out

DD also wears tatty clothes that are her favourites and she loves but they are tatty

I fall asleep on the sofa sometimes

I often lie in or fall back to sleep on the weekends.

I often don't take my kids out on trips and activities

Sometimes my DD doesn't eat a whole apple and puts some of it in the bin.

So the OP could be worrying about me and my DD and I suppose I'm the talk of the school - just as well I don't give a shit isn't it?

giveitago · 12/05/2013 20:00

My ds throws half eaten fruit into the bin. You could accuse him of being spoilt.

However, I wouldn't accept my ds being looking after someone who isn't looking after them regardless of why they are asleep. I'd tell the school anyhow.

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