I fear for my daughters health when she is with her father, do i stop the contact?

[deleted account] ( 23 moms have responded )

I really do not know what to do! my daughters father and i split over a year ago but i only found out he had a girlfriend and was expecting a child three months ago when his girlfriend was 6 months pregnant. The baby is here and i have seen a huge change in my daughter let alone the tics she has developed through stress. she is 20 month old and should not be experiencing stress especially on the level where it is affecting her mental health. i have not changed anything i am doing apart from trying to give her more attention as her dad has four children altogether and has them all on the day he has my daughter so she has to compete for his attention. I fear my daughter will end up with touretts or something that will really effect the rest of her life. her father has mild touretts but i did not think for one minute she would get it. I feel if i stop their contact that i could limit her stress and keep her in a normal routine which she needs. But i know seeing her father is essential but i want the best for my daughter. i feel her fathers shananigans is making my daughter suffer! what should i do?

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Shawnn - posted on 11/14/2012

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Amy, I have a question or two:



Several times it's been suggested that you actually take your daughter in and have her diagnosed. Have you??? Or are you still basing your assumptions on what you read online?



You've stated that her father has "mild" tourettes, but that you "did not think for one minute that she would get it"...why is that? Tourette's is an INHERITED neuropsychiatric disorder with onset in childhood. So, you should have probably at least sort of expected the symptoms to turn up.



As it stands, you cannot blame "extra stress" all on your ex. Yes, she has "routine" at your house that she doesn't have there, but generally kids, especially those of that age, are very resilient, so the change in routine wouldn't stress her that much. However, children also can detect our feelings and stress, and that does affect them. So, her added stress is probably a 50/50 deal. Yep, its different at dads, but mom is also acting differently (and probably has been since she found out about dad's other baby).



What you need to do, rather than assuming that it's a "mental disorder" brought on by the stress of being at her dads (surrounded by other kids who are interacting with her and involving her in their play), is HAVE HER EVALUATED. If there's a history of tourette's, then she stands a chance of developing it, regardless of how "stressful" her life is now. Tourette's is not a syndrome that is stress related, in that way. Stress does not cause tourette's. Stress can be a contributing factor in the frequency of the symptoms occurring, but it does not CAUSE tourette's.



I'd also recommend that you re-evaluate your feelings about the whole situation. To me, it seems that you were all set and ready to move in and play house with this guy, only to find out that he was stringing more than one woman along. It seems that you may be letting that situation affect the way you are dealing with him, and your own personal stress about the situation may be communicating itself to your daughter. Don't forget, at 20 months, they can understand angry words, they can understand that you're talking down about their other parent, even if they can't fully express their own feelings and thoughts yet. If you're ranting at home, while she's there, then of course she's picking up that mood....and you may want to make sure that isn't happening.

Dove - posted on 11/14/2012

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Just read your last response.... I was wondering how long it would take for you to start giving more details that make him out to be a monster.... @@



Document everything and take it to court. If you have enough evidence you might be granted supervised visits. If you don't have enough evidence and you take it upon yourself to only allow supervised visits... you run the risk of losing your child to this man. THAT is how court works.



Many of the people advising you have BEEN through the court system. I don't doubt that you want what is best for your child and want her safe and happy as every mother does, but if you think you being her mother overrides the legal system... it COULD come and bite you in the butt and cause permanent damage to your child.



I'm giving you this advice BECAUSE I know you want what is best for your child. If you don't do this legally it could backfire horribly.

Holly - posted on 11/14/2012

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you ask for help, you leave ALL THIS info out of the equation... i was MERELY trying to help you see it from another point of view, instead of blaming EVERYTHING on him, you only ASSUME it is stress at his house... but NOW after all this you say that she has been limp, her internal organs were over heated, you rushed her to the emergency room. I am only trying to help. you are attacking me.. i was merely trying to help with the little bit of info i was given

Holly - posted on 11/13/2012

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so evelyn, are you saying that perhaps SHE is the one stressing the child into tics? wow, what a role reversal... I happen to agree... She may be projecting her own stress into the child and perhap as she stated "causing the child to have tics" or perhaps the father should "fear for his daughter's health" when she is with her mother.

Dove - posted on 11/09/2012

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No, you have a duty of care to your daughter to help her through this situation... not remove her father out of her life. Do you know what it's like for a kid to not get to see their dad? 'Neglectful' or not... that is her father and unless she is actually being abused you have no right to remove him from her life because she WILL suffer from it.



LIFE is stress and you can't protect her from that fact. Give her the tools she needs to deal with that even if it means seeking professional help for her.

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Dove - posted on 11/14/2012

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You've been given helpful advice. People who have been through the court system have tried to tell you how it usually works to try and keep you from losing your daughter, but you don't want to hear it. Hopefully he won't take you to court over this, but if he does you'd better be prepared with a great lawyer and a lot of evidence.

Dove - posted on 11/14/2012

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Wow.... I just read the last part of Amy's last post. I'm thinking that can constitute as a threat....



Assuming you want to report her Holly. I would if I were you, but I'll leave that to your discretion. ;)





Just in case it gets deleted... c&p'ing the end of Amy's post...



**obviously this site is not a place for me as i am not a bitch willing to hit someone while they are down. only cowards do that. i would love for you to be in the same room as me saying that! you think you are big on here but you are not.

Dove - posted on 11/14/2012

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If you don't have a court order for supervised visits what you are doing is illegal and may very well cost you your child. Good luck with that since you don't want to listen to anyone that says anything that disagrees with whatever you are going to do anyway.

Holly - posted on 11/14/2012

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for your info i DO have children, and I DO have a child suffering from tics, she has OCD and is suffering from tics... BEFORE I assign any blame to ANYONE, i am taking her to see a psychologist.and perhaps they can help us figure out what started them

Holly - posted on 11/14/2012

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you are asking this man to move out of his house, away from his family to see her? and you are making your daughter out to be the crazy one? wow. why can't your mother take your daughter to see her father since you get too stressed around him and you cause your daughter to have tics over it?

Dove - posted on 11/14/2012

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So how much more stressful will it be for her when he takes you to court for denying his visitation and he ends up with full custody because of it?



Did you even bother to take her to the doctor? Or did you just diagnose her yourself and decide to ban her father from a relationship with her?

Jodi - posted on 11/13/2012

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It is sounding to me like the entire situation is stressful for your little girl (given the further history of the relationship you have had with him). I agree, you shouldn't ignore the tics, but I don't think blaming dad and his situation is necessarily the answer for her. Get the tics seen to and see where that takes you, but by law, you don't have the right to just stop her visits. That's why there is a Family court. And to have the court make this decision, you need evidence, and I'm just not seeing it. You're right, we don't know all the ins and outs, but we do know you can't just stop visits because you *think* this is causing her stress. She is his daughter too, and only the court gets to make that call. If a doctor feels that your daughter is in any danger, once you have had her checked out and talked to them, then that's different. But right now, you are the only one making a judgement call.

Evelyn - posted on 11/13/2012

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Its well known that animals can sense things from us humans. Children have that when they are young because they can not talk well at the age of 2ish. So they pick up on the feelings they get from the adult...they read it so to speak. That will translate into how a child reacts to someone.

Evelyn - posted on 11/12/2012

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I think you are over-reacting a bit. You need not assume things. You need to actually talk to her father and set some guidelines. Are you two in a custody arrangement set up with the court? You will also have to prove she is having stress if this goes to court or into some sort of litigation. You can not legally keep him from seeing her unless he is found to be a threat to the child. As far as him having as many children as he does, that is not a choice you can make for him. He has to decide to stop. You can get him for support and set visitation. But unless you can prove him unfit in any shape or form....you have nothing. Also, she can pick up on your emotions and that may be what you see coming out in her....her reaction to your stress...because honestly you sound like you are the one that is stressed.

Holly - posted on 11/12/2012

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so it was perhaps a mistake that he was sleeping with you... not with her, if she was his girlfriend... no babies are mistakes... accidents maybe, mistakes no

Holly - posted on 11/12/2012

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don't just leave the tics alone, take her to a psychologist as we have suggested, but do not keep your daughter away from her father. and for your information, your ex having another child is NOT NOT NOT NOT a mistake and you have REALLY come across as a ..... not very nice person....

Jodi - posted on 11/09/2012

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Oh, I can absolutely see your point, but the thing is, the routine in his house will be permanently changed. A baby does that, so it becomes a matter of time that it takes for your daughter to get used to the change in routine. And even then, with a young baby, the routine is constantly changing.



"but maybe i am being un reasonable but i would rather die than see my daughter be affected by this huge mistake of his."



The comment you have made above indicates to me that you are actually resentful of him having another child and you believe it was a mistake. You can't make that judgement. Is it possible, at the moment, that you are not being impartial? I would say so.



I think that the best thing you can do is talk to a professional about it. No-one here can see how it is affecting your daughter, and from what you have described, you haven't really given it a chance to settle down. It has only been two weeks. I think it is way too soon to be blaming him.



Did you delete some of your posts?

Jodi - posted on 11/09/2012

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OK, I was a little concerned there for a moment that you were suddenly now accusing him of abusing her. people do that here all the time when they don't get the responses they want, they actually then start playing the abuse card. So my apologies if I jumped to conclusions that you were doing the same thing.



If you are worried about the tics, go and see a specialist and have her diagnosed. She may well have Tourettes, but you can't know what the tics are about until you get her checked out. At least if you have a diagnosis, then you and your ex can discuss it at a level that involves her doctor, and gives consideration to her condition.



Unfortunately, you can't control the routine at dad's house, and unless there is absolute evidence that he is neglecting her or causing the tics, you can't make that call. It is pretty normal, when a new baby comes along, for other children to lose some of their one on one time for a while until a new routine is established, and this can take time. I don't think you have given it time.

Jodi - posted on 11/09/2012

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OK, so now it isn't about the tics, but about marks on her body as well? So are you trying to say you actually think she is being physically abused? I just find it odd that you failed to mention this in your first post, when in fact, I'd be more concerned about that than about the tics.



With regard to the tics, I'm glad you looked it up on the internet, but the internet isn't exactly medical advice. You need to talk to a doctor and perhaps see if she actually has Tourettes, and then a specialist will be able to tell you whether these circumstances could have triggered it or not. It may be that it came on naturally. You can't know by looking it up on the internet.



Just out of interest....what would happen if YOU had a new baby? Happens in the average family all the time.



A father who has a new baby occupying more of his time is not a reason to stop visitation. I understand you want the best for her, but you are making judgements here that you have no qualification or knowledge to make. You need to speak to someone who is an expert in this area.

Dove - posted on 11/09/2012

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Hey, I've been diagnosed with 4 'mental health disorders', so... ;) No one CAUSED them though certain people have certainly made things worse at times.... In my case it's highly likely (but not guaranteed) that 3/4 of my mental health diagnoses are actually caused by a physical disorder diagnosis too, but I'll probably never know for sure.

Holly - posted on 11/09/2012

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thanks for taking it the way i meant it. My daughter starting having s certain "tic" this week, NOTHING started it, but i KNOW she has OCD, and this tic is apparently a common tic that they can have. NOTHING started it, but since she HAS OCD, it came up... nothing CAUSED her to have OCD, but she does have it. can't point blame at family and say, you stressed her and gave her a mental disorder... sorry, it doesn't work that way.ESP since the child is so young, it may be that she has just started showing signs of it, i would definitely stop pointing fingers, and start looking for ways to help her cope. perhaps take her to a child psychologost.

Dove - posted on 11/09/2012

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I agree with Holly. Not saying that it isn't possible that stress from the visits isn't causing an issue, but that's not an automatic given. Her symptoms should definitely be monitored by a health care professional.



I wouldn't start by trying to stop access to her father. Have you tried talking to your ex about possibly spending one on one time with your daughter at a different time from when he is with all the other kids? At least once or twice/month that way?



Most kids are highly adaptable even in crummy situations and if they AREN'T... it's our job to figure out the best way to help them adapt. This is her father... she needs him.

Holly - posted on 11/09/2012

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how do you know the tics are not just from a mental illness she has? Not all mental illness is FROM something, sometimes kids just HAVE a mental illness, something they were born with

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