Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Dear Dad: The One With the Mom on the Edge and the Dad Who Should Be in Hell

Dear Dad,
I will try to keep this brief, but I feel I'm on the edge of breaking and will end up ranting. I have two children ages 13 and 9. Their biological father hasn't seen them since the end of July. Now this is because an investigation was opened regarding him and my nine-year-old who was interviewed by the police and the state police and the Child Safety Center and numerous other people.

Here it is months later and he hasn't spent one night in jail. The only punishment he is getting is losing contact with the girls. This is the ultimate punishment, but I don't feel it's enough. "Lack of penetration" deemed this case unnecessary for certain people to step in that could actually process this properly. I've spent the last several weeks attempting to contact the police and other people involved in the investigation. However it seems like I'm getting the runaround.

Monday morning their biological father texted me. He had the audacity to ask if he could have the girls this weekend. This is not happening. I've already been advised that my thirteen-year-old is old enough to stand in front of a judge and say she's had enough of him, and considering the circumstances that my nine-year-old could do the same. I just feel very frustrated. My nine-year-old is terrified that someone somewhere will try to force her to go back to her biological father's house.

I'm not really sure if I'm asking for advice. What I am really wanting is to get this out there. People need to talk with their children. Trust their children. And protect them from those that do them harm - even if it's another parent!


Dear 'Edge',

I've been trying to wrap my brain around the situation you are describing, and I think part of why I haven't run a column in a few weeks is how disturbed I am by your question.

I'm confused. There is enough evidence where he can't see your children, but due to "lack of penetration" he has not been prosecuted? Where do you live? Have your children gone through forensic testimony (which is fucking horrible, but sometimes necessary) in order to prosecute? If you have a nine-year-old child and a thirteen-year-old child who can corroborate a report of sexual abuse, what is going on with your local law enforcement?

I do have to say that in any investigation, including those involving SVU, they take TIME. These investigations take an impossible amount of time where the piece of shit perps walk around, even near their victims before ANYTHING is done. I promise you, 'Edge', they do get dealt with and justice does prevail and I'm hoping that is what is going on in your situation. I know three months feels like an eternity, but in legal terms, it isn't that long (I'll bet you will hear something around Christmas time/the turn of the year).

I appreciate your question and hope enough people read it to reach anyone who may be in your situation because your desire to spread the message of listening to and protecting your children is ESSENTIAL.

You need to trust your gut and listen to your children and under NO circumstances allow that piece of shit anywhere near your kids.

But that is not enough. I don't know why your local DCF, SVU, and any other law enforcement department is failing you, but they ARE FAILING YOU!

Please immediately contact this organization:

National Sexual Assault Hotline, from
800.656.HOPE (4673)

If I were you, I would start making daily phone calls to my local department of children and family services, local school system, my local police station, and local media outlets (on the condition of complete anonymity - very important, you don't want to bring unneeded attention to your children who are already going through a lot).

I would make these calls in concert with putting everything in writing and sending time/date marked emails, as well as sending correspondence to your state's attorney general, as well as the contacts I've listed above via certified/return receipt requested letters. Make note of any and every contact he makes and create a diary of events as described by your children! I would wake up the next day and do it again. And again. And again. And again - until SOMEONE listens!

Above all else, 'Edge', you need to follow your gut and protect your children. Don't let that bastard near them. If he puts up a stink, call the police and show them your history after following my advice on the above.

Praying for you and and your children and sending good thoughts and energy. Please keep us updated!


What does everyone else think? Any other advice for this mom (and hopefully that echoes my initial reaction to this post which was not fit for printing)?

If you are in this situation, follow this link
photo: flickr/Ben Seidelman

Thursday, September 29, 2016

The One With the Pig and the Work Floozy

Dear Dad,
My husband and I have been married for six years. I just proved this past January that he has been "dating" a girl at work off and on for the past four years. Looking back it had to be around the time that he started suggesting we hang out with her and her husband that they started to see each other. We on occasion went out together as a double date for drinks or to shoot pool. She knew he was married with two kids before they ever took it past talking.
He has started to try to be more of a part of mine and the kids lives since I confronted him with proof this time (I couldn't prove but have brought up their relationship several times in the past- back then you couldn't read what was in the texts but could see how many was going to and from who. 1,000+ texts in one month alone between the two of them and they were always deleted from his phone).
So here is my question: for years I have wanted another baby, he always said no. Recently he has started suggesting that we try for another baby. I can't help but wonder if his motivation for wanting another child is to pull me back in because since I have proven his infidelity I have not been the sweet and out going person he married. I am not so ready to jump into bringing a baby into our mess, but am I wrong for that? He still works with that woman and I feel like maybe the craziness of the whole new baby journey might push him back to her. The six weeks after our youngest child being born was when they started "talking as friends."
The "Work Wife"
Dear "Instincts,"
I changed your name because I feel it is more fitting for your question. You have a gut instinct on what to do, and you need to trust it. Never use a baby as a marriage/relationship band aid. It would not be fair to the unborn child nor your other kids, and I promise you it won't work and you may find yourself the single mother to three children instead of two.Is that really something you are prepared to face?
You have some questions to ask yourself. First, are you interested in an open marriage, because you are married to someone who clearly lacks the ability to be monogamous. As I've mentioned in my column before, my wife and I began in an open relationship. We didn't believe in monogamy, nor a traditional marriage. When push came to shove, it did not work for us and led to a six year break up. For some people, it works. It didn't work for us and from what I gathered from your question, I don't think it would work for you either.
My issue with your situation is that he didn't just "cheat" on you - he had an ongoing relationship with someone he has an intimate and daily connection with. I call that a special kind of pig. If he wanted an open relationship, he should have discussed it with you and not gone behind your back. I wondered if perhaps he and work floozy and her husband were going to ask you to swing (I always go with my gut when I read a question). It does not seem from your question, though, that the issue was ultimately about sex or lacking the ability to be monogamous - he full on had a secret relationship with another person! How does that make you feel?
Second, why are you still in your marriage? Is your husband providing everything you need to remain the "sweet outgoing person" you were when you got married and that you deserve to be? Are you growing together as a couple and as a team? Is this what you signed up for?
Third, if a man disrespects you so much that he takes you on double dates with work floozy and her husband, what does that say about what he thinks of you? Do you think that gesture means he thinks you are a smart, deserving woman? Or, does he think you are a clueless doormat?
The solution to your problem is not avoidance and bringing another human being into the mix. You need to answer the questions I asked you for yourself and then get into some counseling - both with your husband and for yourself. I believe every marriage is worth working on to fix. I just just worry that you have been an afterthought and so horribly betrayed.
It is going to take a lot of work, blood, sweat, tears and rebuilding of trust for this story to have a happy ending. Regardless, I wish YOU a happy ending because you can have any life that you want. Make sure you prioritize yourself - he sure hasn't been. <3
Readers - what are your thoughts? Could you stay with someone who had a long-term, secret, ongoing intimate relationship with someone else?

photo: flickr/
ryan remillard