Confused and sick today

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-21-2004
Confused and sick today
6
Mon, 12-10-2012 - 11:04am

As I read through your stories, and research behaviors of abusers, patterns, and whether they can change. I am sickened. I identify with so many of these stories. For years I have been in denial. Each and every site I have gone to, the Ex fits every single thing, perfectly. It's like they met him, and know him.

 

The question I have today: How do I keep my children safe from this man? My DV resource center, says that I have to appear rational, and ask for supervised visitation. I DO NOT WANT my children around him. Is the goal to hope that he will drop away? That supervised is just going to be too hard for him, because he doesn't admit to anything he's done? He minimizes his actions. Will NOT acknowledge the trauma he's caused the boys.   I am very confused and very sad.

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-04-2000
Mon, 12-10-2012 - 12:30pm

Supervised visitations would be a way to look like you are cooperating with the idea of keeping their father in there lives but still knowing the children are safe from his actions. 

Usually supervised visitations are paid for by the parent being supervised...so there is a chance he will choose to not bother just because of the money aspect...he also may become bored with having to leave the comfort of his own home to go to a designated location to spend time with his children, all the while being watched/observed by some outsider he has no way of manipulating or controling...if you do ask for supervised visitations, please inquire if the person assigned to supervise the visitations can be well versed in the domestic abuse area so he/she will be even more difficult to be manipulated and conned...

Yes I do understand not wanting the children around him at all, BUT:

regardless how you feel/think about him he IS still their dad. Regardless what you think/feel about him they do still love him (even if they are afraid of him)...it is important you maintain a nutral attitude reagarding him when the children are involved...be very careful about what you say about him when your children can overhear...

A child who is listening to his one partent talk bad and express bad feelings toward the other parent is listening to those very same words being directed him himself or herself as well...after all the parent who is being bashed is 1/2 of that child and so bashing that parent is bashing that 1/2 of the child as well...children may not say anything about it to you BUT they do internalize it and it does change who they will become as adults...usually not in a very positive way. Also the more the child hears negative things about the other parent the more the child grows to resent the parent who spoke those negative things...Just food for thought.

If you start demanding he have no contact at all with the children, regardless your justifications for your claims, the more unreasonable and illogical you appear to the courts and HIS lawyer will be able to use that to cause question to your ability to parent the children safely and could turn the tables around to grant HIM full custody and you only visitation and YOU will be paying child support instead of him....SOOOO that being said, do listen to the DV resource centers advice...they do know what they are talking about in this regard, they have seen too many times things go wrong simply because the mom was wanting to keep their child safe from the abuser...it may seem backward but trust them, they do know.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-21-2004
Mon, 12-10-2012 - 12:59pm
I appreciate this insight. I am confused because why are we to distance ourselves from the abuser, yet we cannot do that with the children. Does this make sense? I agree with no bad talking the other parent. I have protected the boys as much as I can in regards to this. Even sugar coating the Exs bad behavor. Which I am feeling guilty for. It is difficult, especially when my oldest says things that I understand completely. I find it so very difficult to remain neutral, but am. You clarified well the point of why not to ask for no visitation. I thank you for that. It does seem backward. I wasn't aware we could ask for a supervisor that is trained in DV. I am on a bit of a rollercoaster today. Thank you for your words.

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-21-2004
Mon, 12-10-2012 - 4:10pm
It seems I usually feel this way on Mondays. Especially, with the impending court date. I am also feeling stressed because of the way my boys have acted out the past couple weeks. My oldest is breaking things, and even shoved me with his shoulder yesterday. My youngest is throwing full on tantrums to try and get what he wants when he wants it. We have reverted back to when they were 2 years old, and I taught them not to hit, or break things. That we don't always get what we want. I'm exhausted, mentally and physically. My oldest also has been trying to control my youngest. Taking on the "parental role". I have learned that this is common for children of alcoholics. I've had to assure him, that he does not need to do this when he is with me. I am the parent. Lots of love and reassurance. Yesterday was really hard with my oldest actually getting physical.

 

Avatar for happyasme
iVillage Member
Registered: 01-11-2012
Mon, 12-10-2012 - 5:11pm

Frustratedwith3, Thanks for your wisdom  I also need it today. 

I am also confused, it is so dang hard to stay rational when we are the only ones that truly know what the abuser in our lives is capable of, we want to protect our children, but it can be impossible to do at times without badmouthing the other parent.  One thing my DV councellor said was that even if the father does absolutely nothing and just sits in his lazy boy all day, he is still the children's father and he is still very important to the children, regardless of what we think of him or his parenting.

 

 

Avatar for cajunharmony
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-28-2001
Mon, 12-10-2012 - 10:19pm

Isn't Kat (frustratedwiththree) the BOMB?!?!  Just so y'all know, she IS a trained, licensed therapist who specializes in PTSD, DV, EMD and another modality that has been shown to be very effective in patients with PTSD, but I can't remember what it is.  If Kat gives you advice on how to deal with the ex, you can take that advice to the bank!  I am so, so grateful that she is a part of this board and continues to offer her own experience, strength and hope as a fellow survivor.  Kat, YOU ROCK!  <3

Mama Harmony

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-21-2004
Tue, 12-11-2012 - 10:15am
I grew up with my Dad, as much as he could have, he NEVER badmouthed my Mom. Ever. She was in and out of our lives every couple years. He let us come to our own conclusions, and we did. He set an example in me that I didn't think I'd ever need. I am grateful for him, and for this example he set. When I did see her, she would bad talk my Dad. I hated that feeling. I have no interest in having my kids feel that.