Why Denise Richards Reportedly Wants to Give Up Custody of Charlie Sheen's Twins Is So Incredibly Sad

Richards -- who was granted custody of Sheen's sons with Brooke Mueller after Mueller went to rehab -- has filed paperwork claiming the boys are violent and need psychological care

It's all fun and games when celebrities misbehave -- unless children are involved. Charlie Sheen's 4-year-old twin boys Bob and Max, from his brief marriage to Brooke Mueller, have already seen too much of their parents' hard-partying ways. And now, according to Denise Richards, they're showing violent tendencies and serious psychological damage.

Backing up a bit: Richards, who is Sheen's previous ex-wife, became the twins' legal guardian when their mother entered rehab for the 19th time this May. Two years earlier, the boys had been removed from Sheen's care after Mueller took out a restraining order against him, accusing Sheen of physically abusing her. Basically, neither parent was deemed fit to care for the kids full-time, so Richards, who has two daughters with Sheen, offered to step in.

Recently, Richards told the L.A. Department of Children and Family that she could no longer be Bob and Max's guardian. In a letter to the agency, which sources at TMZ have read, the actress described some terrifying behaviors that she could no longer tolerate.

According to Richards, the little boys would enter a "zombie-like state," and go from nicely petting her dogs to hitting, kicking and strangling them. She says they told her, flat-out, that they wanted to hurt and kill the dogs. Even worse: her three daughters have been on the receiving end of Bob and Max's rages. She claims that the twins have bit the girls, spit on them, kicked them, scratched them and punched them, among other frightening offenses. The problem extends to school, she says, where Bob has "harmed other kids" and "punched and slapped teachers in the face."

Richards appears to place the blame squarely on Mueller, saying that when the boys return from their mother's care, they act out violently and have terrible nightmares. She also says Mueller has prevented her from getting psychological counseling for the twins.

Richards and Sheen appear to be on the same page. Charlie is livid that his sons are allowed to spend any time in Mueller's custody, telling TMZ that his ex-wife is "as awful a parent and a person as you can possibly draw up." He says that Mueller has inflicted both physical and emotional damage on his children, and that Child Services isn't doing a thing to prevent it.

It's possible that Mueller is as bad as Charlie says, but Sheen isn't an ideal family man himself; remember, he pleaded guilty to domestic abuse charges while they were still married. And the guy hasn't exactly stepped up to being a full-time father. He seemed perfectly happy to let one ex-wife care for the kids of the other.

The whole thing is really sad and scary, especially since it's playing out in front of the entire world. It's not Bob and Max's fault that they were born to chronically irresponsible parents. Those kids desperately need some stability in their lives, and probably some therapy, too. Here's hoping they get it.

Donna Kaufman is a freelance writer and iVillage contributor. Find her on Twitter and Google+

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