how do I ensure no abuse when dd spends time with dad..

Avatar for winter2007
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-17-2006
how do I ensure no abuse when dd spends time with dad..
6
Fri, 07-29-2011 - 11:17pm

Is she in denial? Says he is not abusive..and I made it worse. Yes, he yells now and then but he is a good person. Now if I try to mention anything about her dad and abuse, she gets mad at me. Somewhere I read- either the child will hate their dad, or do whatever it takes to earn his affection. At this point she wants a dad than none at all. The therapy didnt work out and I did not force..as she sort of normalized after her dad reached out to her..see..how her happiness/mood is influenced by his behavior. Pretty pathetic. I am very scared that she will flip oneday, he will flip and somebody will get hurt and I am not around. What can I say and how can I say (or prepare her) without her alienating me?

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-04-2000

As hard As it is for you, you cannot be there any more. The reason she believes him to be the saint she believes him to be is because you have always been there to step in and take the abuse from him for her. She NEEDS to experience reality for herself. Yes it is very frightening for you to even fathom her there in a blow up without you to intercept his abuse for her, but she needs to experience it in full for her to realize what reality really looks like. The more you dish her dad whom she loves for no other reason than he is her dad, the more you will alienate her from you. Avoid saying anything negative about him to or around her...this does not mean you have to sing his praises, just avoid talking ill of him...the best plan is to not talk about him at all to or around her...

IF a blow up occurs while you are not there to "save" her, she will have to save herself for once...she has 911 and she has been taught over and over again about calling for help...she has your number to call if she needs to escape his wrath...if she does call, do not go into the house, just let her know to watch for you and you will pull up and she can jump into the car and you will take her home...

Another word of wisdom, should such a situation occur and you have to rescue her....once she gets into that car avoid trying to discuss anything about it...just tell her you love her no matter what and take her home...if she wants to discuss it, then you just listen, NO COMMENTS...don't ever ask questions about her time with dad...that is for her and dad...again very hard for an overly enmeshed mother but you need to master this self control for her sake As well As the sake of your relationship with her.

If there is any physical abuse don't hesitate to take her to the police station to have it documented...you don't tell her that is what you are doing, you tell her that those bruises need to be recorded with the police department and take her there...if they go to interview her don't be in there with her (I am sure they wont let you anyway to avoid you influencing her answers) be open and honest when they interview you about why you felt it necessary to document, ie the reason you separated from him was his temper and abuse and your concern for your daughter when she goes to visit but you have no choice since she is of an age the courts allow her to decide to visit with him and she chooses to be with him...this may be an open door to file for supervised visitations only with him which will then eliminate your need for concern.

Also, the chances of any blowing up occurring the first few visits are slim to none because he is still needing to prove to your dd that YOU are the cause for the tension and blow ups so he will be on his best behavior just to help convince her that you are indeed the bad guy...so for the first few visits you can rest knowing he is using this time to help manipulate her thoughts...just don't let her bring home the lies and treat you poorly simply because she is starting to believe his lies...fact is in time she will see his true colors and realize who the monster really is....it is just not your place to tell or show her...she has to learn on her own, unfortunately, the hard way...but that is how she is determined to learn so just be there to pick up the pieces and not judge or say "I told you so"...

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-27-2004
You've already talked to her, and she has replied to you: he's not doing anything. That's really all you can do. It hasn't been very long since the two of you separated (about a month, right?), so it's early days yet; cherish the calm. Once school starts and she begins making her usual demands, you may see (or hear about) fireworks.

Her relationship with her father is hers to figure out--they will be father and daughter for the rest of his life. You cannot repair or manipulate that relationship, because it isn't yours.
Avatar for winter2007
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-17-2006

Thank you to both of you..good pointers. I think right now it is not physical..it is more emotional/psychological. Few times she has texted me..i hate you.

Avatar for cajunharmony
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-28-2001

Winter, if you recall, I told you a long, long time ago that she hadn't yet felt the full impact of his abusive behavior because you were always there to run interference, and I stand by that comment now.

Mama Harmony

Avatar for winter2007
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-17-2006

Thanks for your reply...I appreciate it..it is good to keep getting validation..and future steps..

Not that this has any bearing but news like this throw me off..recently read news that dad/son were in murder-suicide. Wife filed for divorce from abusive husband, took her daughter, her son was in college (and adult) so she had no control. Son went to live with dad over summer break. Last week, neighbors investigated as wife could not reach son. When neighbors called police, they found dad had killed son and commited sucide, using his own gun.

It is sad..you never know when such men will flip. Apparently he was very abusive and wanted to do the last bit to teach his wife a lesson. I have been reading up on how dangerous could he be..he doesn't own a gun, does not do alcohol/drugs..so I pray that he will never flip that way..but you see where such stories haunt you..

I am slowly telling dd of safety planning..without trying to incriminate him in any way..I will try to continue the therapy for her..

thanks again

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-27-2004

I can certainly see why a news story like that would be terrifying for you--it's the sort of thing I imagine many parents fear when they have to release their children into the custody of a parent who has been abusive.

It would be foolish of me to tell you that you're over-reacting and that nothing like that can ever happen to your daughter.