My son isn't biologially mine, and his Dad is doing everything he can to undermine our household, Help!

Sarah - posted on 03/07/2011 ( 7 moms have responded )




My son, Austin, is biologically my sister's son, but I've had guardianship since he was 6 months old. I. originally took custody so she could go to rehab and b/c his dad was in prison. She came out of rehab unrehabbed. She stayed at our house for a while, but eventually her habit came between all of us. I kicked her out and kept Austin, she knew he was okay and was alright with it. She ended up getting in more trouble and eventually going to prison. He started calling me Mom after she left, and she understands he needs a Mom, so she's okay with it, (As much as she can be, I'm sure!) She's been gone for a little over 4 years, now, and his Dad has been back in prison twice since. Everytime he get's out he does his best to undermine Austin's stability here. He told him, at 3, that I didn't want to be his Mom. He told him, at 5, that I didn't love him as much as his 'real' parents did. Now, at 6, he's back again, and telling him he doesn't have to listen to me since I'm not his Mom. The only stability he's had in his entire life is our house. I don't understand, or care, why he's trying to ruin what Austin has here. What I need is to know how to help him feel secure. I don't want to have to bad mouth his dad, but I need Austin to know he's safe, loved, and, most of all, I need him to listen to me. He started having seizures last November, and they're aggravated by stress. I love this little boy, I just want him to be okay and not have "issues!"


Christy - posted on 03/07/2011




My nephew went through something similiar to this so I get where you are coming from!

I would highly suggest counseling for the little guy. Explain to the therapist in advance what has been going on without sounding opinionated (which you have every right to do but you know how these things can go). Also remind Austin how much you love him and as you have been doing, DON'T bad mouth his parents.

Question, why does his Dad get to see him? Legality? Just curious. If you can I would wipe out his Dad's parental rights.

Also once Austin get's old enough, he will know how poorly his parents behavior has been. It will take time and it's nothing to relish, but still.

Sneaky - posted on 03/08/2011




I would look into a formal legal adoption - his father probably will not agree, but at least you will know if that is a valid option for you in the future. Good luck.

Louise - posted on 03/08/2011




Your little guy is old enough to understand what is going on so sit him down and tell him that you love him and that you will always be here for him. I would also go and seek legal advice and see if you can get supervised visits. As this low life has been in jail three times this should not be to difficult. If you think telling this bloke would make any difference to his approach to his son then write a letter telling him what effects his negative visits have on his son. He is likely to read a letter and take something in rather than try and talk to him.

I think after 6 years Austin knows you love him and he is part of the family so try not to worry to much, just give him time to talk to you to air any worries. He may not want to see his biological father and is to frightened to say.

Dale - posted on 03/07/2011




I don't know your location or how your family court laws work, but over here (NZ) you could gain an immediate interim order to give you sole custody and vary any existing access orders to ensure access with the father is either temporarily halted or supervised until council for the child is appointed and an independent psychology report is compiled. Do you have these options in your country??


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Sarah - posted on 03/08/2011




Thank you for all of your comments, they've been very helpful. I guess I need to look into counseling! I think this is a great idea, but didn't know, if at six, he was ready for it.
His father doesn't have any legal visitation, but I don't want him to seek his parental rights back. I'm worried if I don't let him see him, he'll get my guardianship recsinded (sp?). I was told, when my sister gave me guardianship, that either of his parents could go to the court and get visitation immidiately to move toward reconciliation. Parents right's are a tricky thing here, they try to reunite biological parents before worrying about the welfare of the kids! I don't know that I would win, and if I didn't I wouldn't see him again.
Again, thank you all, and I will seek help for him. I just want him to be okay. I want my little boy back, the one I have when his dad's "away"...

Laura - posted on 03/08/2011




There are two things to consider in your situation: Your nephew/son's mental health and the legality of visitation. If you are having concerns about your boy's mental and emotional health in this situation, by all means seek counceling--it won't hurt and can give him new, appropriate coping skills when dealing with his father.

As for dad, the only thing you can do is seek legal councel regarding your situation. Some good questions were posted already that need to be answered. Unfortunately only a lawyer can help you effectively. And as always, just tell this little boy that you love him--he knows, I'm sure, but it does help re-assure him. Good Luck!

[deleted account]

I agree w/ everything that Christy just posted.

If you have guardianship... what kind of visitation does his father have? Is it court ordered? Have you gone to court to try and modify or eliminate it?

As hard as it may be never bad mouth his parents. It may take time, but he will KNOW the truth when he is older. Just continue to love and care for him as you always have.

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