Is this considered abuse/neglect?

Shannon - posted on 04/21/2010 ( 204 moms have responded )

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My stepson's mother smokes in her home and car even with her child. He's 4 and has severe asthma! He has at least 5 asthma attacks a month. Mostly because she smokes around him. He has been coughing so bad (since last night when he got here from her house) it's to the point where he's vomiting because he's coughing so hard. I have to use his inhaler and breathing treatments every 2-4 hours because he just keeps having attacks. His mother told us that his doctor said cigarette smoke has no affect on his asthma! Well we called his doctor just to make sure cause that sounds ridiculous! The doctor laughed and said there is no way we would EVER tell anyone cigarette smoke has no affect on asthma, thats the number 1 reason for attacks.

Is this abuse/neglect? And if so, what should I do?

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Jennifer - posted on 04/23/2010

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im not sure were ur from but maybe this night help in the state of ohio it is against the law to smoke around a kid under the age of 12 it is child abuse here and i have a nephew that has asthma and they dont smoke around him b/c he goes into an attack everytime u do so yes it is very dangerous and she needs to realize that ur stepson can make that decision to stay away from her when shes doing it b/c he dont know so she needs to be the responsable one and just get up and walk outside atleast....

Lauryl - posted on 04/23/2010

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@ Christin Blevins: "If the child is coughing so much he is vomiting, he needs to go to the E.R. pronto! "
Not disagreeing with you about the severity of your asthma or anything like that, but for the record, I had childhood asthma, and often I had coughing fits where I would cough until I would vomit. They sucked, but none of them was ER-worthy. It was simply a gag reflex from the coughing. The real determinant of whether someone needs the ER is whether they are getting enough oxygen. Blue nailbeds or lips are indicators, but if his asthma is that bad, he probably has one of those little machines with the ball in it at home to measure his breathing anyway.

More generally, I do agree that this child's problem is awful, and should be addressed swiftly, but the stepmom is really not the one to do it. I am assuming that the boy's dad is in agreement with her. It is his son, and he should be the one to handle this.

A lot of the ladies on here are being a bit overwrought about it...calling the birth mom a "lying bitch" and an "abuser". I think they need to take a step back and get a little perspective. No one here knows anything more than what this one person has told us about the situation. Maybe the boy's mom is mostly a good mom with this one terrible blind spot...we just don't know. It's inappropriate of us to get this poor stepmom all riled up with a lot of hyperbole and serious accusations of abuse and neglect and telling her to call CPS, especially when there are still other resources at this family's disposal. As an asthmatic, myself, I'm certainly no fan of smoking, or the mother's behavior in this situation, but it's a bit disingenuous to equate smoking with active child abuse. If her real goal is to help the kid and not to duke it out with her husband's ex, then she and her husband need to find a way to bring this mom along, not antagonize her. Trust this divorced kid when I say that antagonizing her (Calling CPS is basically saying to her face, "You're a bad mom!") will only raise her defenses and make it harder to get her to shape up.

Sarah - posted on 04/23/2010

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My Best Friends mother was a pack a day smoker in the house, car etc. She suffered asthma attacks when she was young, and ultimately, rarely ever experienced fresh air and lived with the smell and yellow walls her entire childhood.. She eventually got over her Asthma, but the worst is, she is a smoker to this day and is pretty much helpless to stop. So, not only was her health affected, she is now addicted herself, and although she DOES NOT smoke around her kids, they see her do it outside every day..and the cycle continues.

Sarah - posted on 04/23/2010

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My Best Friends mother was a pack a day smoker in the house, car etc. She suffered asthma attacks when she was young, and ultimately, rarely ever experienced fresh air and lived with the smell and yellow walls her entire childhood.. She eventually got over her Asthma, but the worst is, she is a smoker to this day and is pretty much helpless to stop. So, not only was her health affected, she is now addicted herself, and although she DOES NOT smoke around her kids, they see her do it outside every day..and the cycle continues.

Melissa - posted on 04/23/2010

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That's abuse and neglect. I smoke, and I have 3 kids. I would never smoke in my house or in my car with the kids in it. My son has had asthma its better now that he is older, but there is no way I would smoke with him in the house or car. and I would never smoke in my house weather the kids are in it or not. I grew up in a house where my grandparents smoked, I am not saying its horrible or anything, but we know more now than we used to back then, and when a child has asthma you have to be even more careful with the cigarette smoke. I am very sorry for your step-son and I am sorry that you also have to deal with this. I hope it all works out. And just to let you know. you can call CPS anonymously, in my opinion this is something you might want to consider, especially since it is obvious that his health is at risk.

Christin - posted on 04/23/2010

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A lot of people are suggesting you call CPS anonymously, but I want to let you know that anonymous calls to CPS are normally disregarded. All calls made to CPS are confidential so I would leave my name. Also, if you tell the CPS worker your relationship to the child they will be more apt to listen because you have a close relationship to the child.

[deleted account]

Definitely. The doctor surely smells it on them when he goes in for checkups. What can you do though? In some counties it's actually illegal to smoke in a home or car with children. It's becoming a popular new law. You should check in your area and if you're genuinely concerned, and the law is in effect where you live, call the police. It's probably just a fine, but something must be done. Sounds like she needs counseling becuase that is far beyond smoking around a healthy child. There may be some underlying issues she's dealing with.

Tammy - posted on 04/23/2010

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abuse and neglect because she is exposing her son to second hand smoke when he doesn't need to be around it she going to kill him, because she chose to smoke around him

Christin - posted on 04/23/2010

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I completely agree!! If the child is coughing so much he is vomiting, he needs to go to the E.R. pronto! I have asthma and was in the hospital for a week with an I.V. so the doctors could put steriods straight into my body so I could breathe. Your step-son needs a doctor right now, his asthma is NOT under control and the breathing treatments and meds are not working if he is still coughing. When I was admitted into the hospital I had been given a breathing treatment by my doctor, it worked for about 2 minutes and my lungs closed again. It sounds like this is what is happening with your step-sons lungs too. Once he is admitted into the hospital, speak with the doctor about his mother smoking around him and find out what he suggests your next step should be about filing charges or reporting her to CPS. Good luck with this, poor little guy, no one should not be able to breathe; it is a HORRIBLE feeling to think you are going to suffocate to death because your lungs wont work. Get him help ASAP and find out from a professional what your next steps should be.

Carrianne - posted on 04/23/2010

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If you can smell it - you're breathing it...if you're breathing it, the smoke is circulating through your lungs just as it is the person with the cigarette. Smoking in a car, or enclosed space with a child of any age is selfish. But, be careful. Let the father handle the situation to avoid a mess.

Shannon - posted on 04/23/2010

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Yes its abuse and neglect and you have to be his voice as he is to little. You have to try to do something as his astma will only worsen what happens if he has a really bad attack while he is in her care?? Be his voice he needs it. Good luck i hope your step son gets better

Martina - posted on 04/23/2010

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It is abuse ... here in australia it is against the law to smoke with children in your car .... i would do something about it as she obviosuly only cares about the child support money she gets ... his health must come first

Shantel - posted on 04/23/2010

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Some women are talkign about it not being morally right to report this smoking lying bitch...hello!!! of course its morally right to protect a child and their wellbeing. She needs to be reported by your husband, she is obviously not fit to be parenting ANY childeren and its just ridiculous. Its not just the question "is it right or legal to cmoke in cars or homes where childeren are present", its about THE POOR FOUR YEAR OLD HAS ASTHMA!! I am disturbed by this and some of the things people have written. Your husband needs to report her before its too late and then you are both guilty just as much as she is for standing by and watching the health of the child deteriorate right in front of your eyes.

Cece - posted on 04/23/2010

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I would definitely call it in. You and your husband should also see an attorney about changing the custody arrangement for your stepson...if he has such bad asthma and his own mother is so cruel as to subject her child to that, then she deserves to have her rights taken away or at least have an order saying she can't smoke around her son.

Jennifer - posted on 04/23/2010

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Absolutely YES! it is bad enough to smoke yourself but to make a child suffer is just ignorant...sounds like this child has severe asthma which is most likely due to smoking...I don't know how your arrangements are but I would be stopping contact and if there is a problem getting a social worker involved to help assist in obtaining custody as the mother is obviously not looking in the child's best interest

Dawn - posted on 04/23/2010

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Shannon: Just a couple of things for you to ponder.

1. Ignore all the hostile posts that are viciously attacking you as a step mom. They obviously have issues with your role. So be it.

2. I don't know if you have your own kid(s) or not but if you don't, I think it's great that you are part of the Circle of Moms group to gain insight on being a parent. Keep at it.

3. As for your role as a stepmom, I'm sure you are sharing all this info with your husband so that you may both make an informed decision. You have tapped into a great resource to help you with this situation. Don't let the negativity of others get you down or mad. Like I said, they have issues and are projecting them onto you.

4. Good luck with helping your stepson with his medical issues. I hope everything turns out well for all of you.

Cindy - posted on 04/23/2010

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I agree with you Meriona, it is a real consideration. Unfortunately, 45 years ago it was considered the "norm" to smoke. No one considered, or knew, of the ramifications. It is no long the "norm" and the ramifications are very clear but people still do not get it. I lost my sister 5 years ago at the age of 49 to lung cancer. She was a smoker - had been all her life. We grew up in a smoking home. I have mild asthma - and I smoke. I know the dangers, I know the warning, I have seen what it does. It is a very hard habit to break BUT! I do not smoke around my 2 yr old son, not in the car, not in the home. His health is my priority. This woman has her own issues with smoking but as a mother, I would hope her childs health and welfare would be important to her. The father needs to deal with this issue. He needs to speak calmly and rationaly with the mother and explain his feelings to her. She needs to understand he is not attacking her for smoking but that his concern (and his step mothers) is for the health and safety of that child. Whether it is considered abuse or neglect is a moot point. SECOND HAND SMOKE KILLS. Third hand smoke has it's effects as well, expecially for an asthmatic. Even is she no longer smokes in the vehicle with this child ... he is still breathing in the residuals from the inside of the vehicle.

[deleted account]

yes cancer is possible from not only second hand smoke but from first hand smoke as well and then again smoking is NOT always the cause of cancer. they have a study now where you either have a cancer gene or you dont.Anyone can have precancerous cells and whether or not it turns into cancer depends on the person. I did address that smoking can cause other problems other than asthma some people just dont understand what smoking can do to you it can cause COPD,emphysema.cancer,and other problems but then some people can be close minded and think those things wont happen to them or their loved ones I think the poster needs to talk to her husband and go from there he needs to address it as well as her they are a united front and need to battle this together

Meriona - posted on 04/23/2010

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I was very interested in all these concerns but here's one that wasn't addressed. My older brother was a smoker when younger and his oldest daughter had severe asthma. I remember her practically begging him to stop smoking in the car when we were all packed in it in the winter. Fortunately he stopped several years ago but the daughter, who is now almost 50, has breast cancer and has been fighting it for several years now and this is likely from all the tobacco smoke when she was young. Just thought I'd throw this in as food for thought. She is a beautiful young woman who has had one breast removed already and might have to have the other one off also. If he had realized 45 years ago what the consequences of his addiction were, he would have stopped right then as he has always been a wonderful father to his children. No one seems to have addressed the possibility of cancer as a result of this mother's second hand smoke!

Jennifer - posted on 04/23/2010

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First of all I also have had asthma are you sure there isnt something more going on like an infection bronchitis maybe? Have you tried asking her nicely not to do it and explaining to her the negative affects on the little boy? At this time even though it is your step-son it is the fathers decision to threaten legal ramification however it doesnt necessarily mean she will lose her child for smoking around him. However the threat may make her see things differently. The father has to handle this not you! I am divorced and have step children.

Shelly - posted on 04/23/2010

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ABSOLUTLY this is both abuse and neglect!



My grandparents smoked in their house and cars until I had my kids and the rule was if they wanted to smoke in the house then my kids wouldn't come visit EVER! So they started smoking outside, yes of their own house! The kids are what's important here!



I even started a whole family "thing" because my aunt refused to go outside to smoke whether my kids were there or not.. it wasn't even her house! She said she'd go into the kitchen.. what the smokes just stops at the kitchen door... not a chance we packed up and left and spent a SMOKELESS Christmas at home!



You call CPS! Tell them what is happening! What the mother is saying. You are in the right here and don't back down ultimately its the child you are protecting! Children don't have a voice you have to do this for him!

[deleted account]

thats why the US has emission tests for cars and any other transportation if that vehicle fails it has to be fixed before it can be used on the road. so we do have stuff here to control emissions and here in the US Drs reccomend and its a proven fact(in studies from hospitals,medical journals,universities) that smoking DOES aggravate asthma and is harmful to asthmatics and if a mother smokes while pregnant it CAN lead the child to developing asthma and if your health programs in the UK were so great then they too would tell people that smoking is harmful and it doesn't just cause asthma or affect asthma it has other health risks involved! we are not self obsessed I like a lot of other mothers do out homework and research on these subjects as our children have asthma(or family members) and we KNOW after many countless nights in the ER,countless medicines and what not what triggers asthma and what we can do from preventing it.If it had to do with just fuel from cars then the big states like new york city,California and other places would have the highest rates of asthma per person. as for smoking not being a hangable offense that may be but here in the US some states it is ILLEGAL to smoke in a home/car if a child has asthma and in most states here now you CANNOT smoke in a bar/pub,restaurant,office building,etc and you cant smoke outside of these places unless you are so many feet away. In some states you cannot even smoke in your own vehicle IF there is someone else riding in it with you, so yeah these are considered crimes and CAN be punishable. I dont think the stepmom is doing it because she is jealous or trying to be the mom she is genuinely concerned for her stepchild and wants whats best for him and she is asking for advice, we dont need people to come on here bashing the rest of us who KNOW what we are talking about we may not know everything like you claim but Im sure most of us who replied KNOW about asthma and whats considered abuse

Nicole - posted on 04/23/2010

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Regardless weather he has asthma or not its abusive and neglectful to smoke around your kids!! My Mom is a smoker and we rarely visit my parents because she see no problem lighting up in front of my kids..they have lived in their house for 20 yrs. that is 20 yrs of smoke build up in the carpet, walls, furniture. She is a crappy Grandma because she would rather smoke than be a grandmother...it makes me sad for my kids sake

Dawn - posted on 04/23/2010

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This is a form of abuse/neglect. My son has asthma and when we visit anyone who is a smoker, his asthma flares up, so we are careful with the amount of exposure to smoke he has (which is very little).



I know in BC we have strict laws about where you can smoke and smoking in a vehicle is one of those laws that we put in place for the protection of the child.



The mother is acting in a selfish way with no thought to the consequences to her son and his health. I would be contacting social workers and the custody lawyer to have him removed out of that environment for his safety. She may not realize, but asthma can kill. Especially on one so small if not looked after right away.



Good luck to you and your husband.

[deleted account]

it is considered abuse in some states though thats my point.because any trigger can cause an asthma attack that results in death. Ive come close to dying with mine and my DH and son have asthma and just about everyone in my family has asthma(dad had it,sisters,etc) but what she can and cant do are 2 different things and if she takes the child to the ER everytime he has an attack the hospital can log the attack and she can inform them as to what she think set it off and the Drs can report it to CPS and anyone else if they think its endangering the life/health of the child.CPS will take action a lot quicker if a Dr,teacher or anyone else of authority is involved.But this child needs ALLERGY testing as well as asthma tests,pulmonary function tests,etc. something as small as a cold or virus can bring on an asthma attack

Lorraine - posted on 04/23/2010

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I don't think you could get away with calling it abuse. Social workers wouldn't have time to investigate this they are very busy. Go to the asthma websites and get some information which you can give to her. The dad could ask the doctors surgery to give him an asthma review with BOTH parents present and discuss the smoking with the NHS profeesional. Dad could also ask to speak to the health visitor and possibly ask them to make a call. Thus logging the concern with various agencies and asking for support. Once they start giving advice, if this is continually ignored and they believe that the smoking is not helping, they will be able to do more about it than you. As someone has said, your concerns may be misunderstood. Hopefully she may take advice from them. If not, they will be recording visits etc and will gradually collect proof of neglect. Then with their support you may be able to take it from there. In the meantime log each time you have to givr the inhaler and why eg after smokey car journey, hot day, high pollen count. You can the isolate the triggers. I have 2 asthmatic children and this is what we did, then discussed them with the doctor and what we should do to prevent attacks if possible. I am also asthmatic. Smoke really affects me.

[deleted account]

yes in a lot of states now it is considered abuse to smoke around a child that has health problems such as asthma my nephew has asthma and when my sister was going through custody the judge told the father NOT to smoke in the house or in a car when the child is in it. otherwise he can be brought back to court for neglect and abuse.I would find out if its considered abuse in your state if not there isnt anything you can do really Also a DR WILL tell you and drs have been saying it for years that smoking CAN cause asthma in young children(its not the only cause) and to NOT smoke around children and to keep children with health problems like asthma AWAY from the smoke. Dr's told my mom over 30 years ago to not smoke around me or quit smoking because of my asthma. if you can get him into a smoke free environment and he has better breathing then you can say mom contributes to his condition but there are other conditions that cause asthma attacks not just cigarette smoke.(allergens like dust mites,pet dander,pollen,grasses,allergies,cockroach droppings(if they are in the home) even ladybugs can cause them. but I dont agree with what his mother is doing. If he is having that many attacks he needs to see an allergy and asthma specialist to see what his triggers are so he can avoid them to prevent future attacks. that is TOO many attacks in a month and its dangerous. please take him to these Dr's so he can treat his asthma better

Lisa - posted on 04/23/2010

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Get the child evaluated. More than one evaluation, by his Pediatrician and a specialist in pediatric asthma, will help. Ask them to report on his reaction to second hand smoke as well as sensitivity to things like smoke saturated clothing and furniture. (If Mom stops smoking around him, will he still be ill in her car or home if she smokes when he is not there?) There are different levels of sensitivity. Make sure they are SPECIFIC.



Evaluations in hand, consult a lawyer. Step 1 is a threatening letter to Mom. Step 2 is a Motion to Modify Custody.



It doesn't matter what the laws in your state are (although strict anti-smoking laws will help). The real key is that the mother's behavior is endangering the child.



The doctors' reports must be specific and graphic. They must say she is ENDANGERING THE CHILD with her behavior. At that point no one can say you are vindictive, only worried for the child's health.



You need to be willing to drop the whole thing if she will agree to change her smoking habits and he is no longer in danger. But you should get some sort of order from the judge in case she slips back into her old ways.

[deleted account]

Whether it's illegal or not it may be enough (and I'm sure there's more) for your husband to take her to court for custody.

Sky - posted on 04/23/2010

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I would report her. I have unfortunately had to deal with CPS due to a break in my childs leg that we could not explain and false accusations on my mothers part and its not something I would want anyone to have to go through. but I would report her if i was the person... especially if she is not willing to talk about it and change her ways.. she just does not care enough to have a child.



I would however urge you to have his dad take care of it. i think it would be better coming from him than you as a step parent.

Sherri - posted on 04/23/2010

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It is only illegal in a handful of states somewhere I think around 5 states have it illegal. Most states have never even heard of such a thing including myself here in NH up until about a month ago.

Andie - posted on 04/23/2010

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Hell yes its abuse!! Apparently she cares more about her dam cigarettes then she does for the health of her child!! can u get custody of him?? Also i thought it was illegal to smoke in the car with babies and children? U should check on that. I just cant believe that a mother could be so selfish!! How dare she put her childs health at risk like that. He could die from not being able to breath! His father needs to do something now!!

Deborah - posted on 04/23/2010

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hello my parents smoke and have done ever since i can remember also my brother has asthma but not quite as bad as your stepson forstly i like you ask why he's dad hasn't done anything about this eg speaking to his ex maybe even telling her that she is slowly KILLING her son a bit extreame i know but sometimes you need to shock people into doing things for all the right reasons i have 2 girls myself and as i said my parents smoke what i did was to ask them not to smoke around my children and if they where to refuse then we wouldn't visit they would have to come to us thankfully they agreed not to smoke around the children although that might not work for you you might have to find your own comprimise

Ren - posted on 04/23/2010

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You need to call CPS anonymously, and ask what they would do. Find out the laws in your area before acting. If your ducks are not in a row reaction could cause more problem. If it is neglect the Doctor is obligated to report this in my State of Washington. I am a therapist and deal with custody issues often. What one of the ladies said is right. The courts get tired of custody issues. Get documents and make records of any health problems that you see. Telling her to quit smoking absolutely won't work, but maybe asking her as a favor to you to modify some of her behavior. Also, you might request from the Doctor that he gives her a very clear educational sit down at the childs next visit, where it doesn't not have to be known it came from you. Good luck! I definitely feel your pain and worry.

Sherri - posted on 04/23/2010

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Thank heavens I live in NH. We do not have any of the ridiculous laws other states do. We are not required to have car ins. (I do though), wear seat belts or helmets.. We are a state that still believes in a citizens rights.

Cindy - posted on 04/23/2010

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I am with Meghan ... I am a smoker but I NEVER smoke around my son. I do not smoke in the car or in the house. I am constantly washing my hands after a cigarette as well. There is such a thing as third hand smoke. My in-laws are smokers and smoke in their home and car. I limit the amount of time my son and I spend in their home - I prefer them to come visit us - I don't want my son exposed to the smoke or residual effects. I grew up in a home with smokers and know what it does. It is neglect/abuse - it is up to you and your husband to do something about this and quick!

Marsha - posted on 04/23/2010

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I'm not even bothering to read the rest cause i know many other mothers will agree. This woman knows for a fact her son is ill, She knows for a fact that smoking, be it direct or second hand, can make asthma symptoms worse. The fact that she blatantly smokes around her child is downright neglect. She is selfish and disgusting, and if i ever saw a mother smoking around their child like that, i'd have no problem slapping that cancer stick out of her hand and telling her where she can actually put it. Report it. It will be anonymous when you do. By the gods i hate selfish mothers....

Bobbie - posted on 04/23/2010

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I would consider it abuse! my grandbabies' mother smokes in the car with them, because she takes long trips and can't go that long without a cigarette. My six month old grandson was born 5 weeks early, and his lungs weren't fully formed. He was on a vent tube for the first week of his life. She tells me that she doesn't smoke in the car, but I can smell it on the babies when they come in. And her nearly 4 year old son has told me that she does it. It makes me so angry, but she's 22 years old, and thinks she knows so much more than I do!

Sherry - posted on 04/23/2010

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call child protectivete services and then you can get an order that states that should she continue to put the childs live in harm way the child will be taken away... i did have the same problem but now it is a done deal my son is not aloud to go to his grandparents house because they refuse to follow the order

Melinda - posted on 04/23/2010

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Uhhh Yeah! That would be like her going into a room that uses oxygen and still smokin! What is the difference, especially since the child really has no voice in the matter.Try and find out who the child's pediatrician is and I would have her doctor tell her how it is affecting her child and see if she listens. That is if you want to take a subtle approach. Otherwise there is always children services!

Karleigh - posted on 04/23/2010

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I wouldn't say that its abuse or neglect, but it is certainly wrong. For one thing, it is now illegal to smoke in a car with children in it, she could be heavily fined if she was caught. I also suffered from severe asthma myself as a child, and my parents used to smoke in the house. It wasnt until my attacks got so bad that they landed me in the hospital,. that anything happend. Both my parents quit smoking and refused to let others smoke in the house, and eventually my asthma got better. If I were you, I would try to have your stepson tell his mom how the smoke makes him hurt, or maybe his father could say something. Hopefully she will come to her senses before he ends up in the hospital.

Rosalyn - posted on 04/23/2010

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Yes it is abuse, you have all rights to go to court and ask for a order to ban the mother from smoking in and around the child. If you can show doctor reports, that the child has a medical condition (Asthma) The courts will issue you an order, if the mother is seen smoking, you will need pictures and /or witness to that affect, also some courts will allow the child to speak on their own behalf. She could even lose the child if she continuse. Doesn't the mother know that one attack could take he son away from her forever. (Death)

Good luck, from a mother with a child that also has asthma.

DAWN - posted on 04/23/2010

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SOUNDS LIKE BOTH TO ME. SHE IS NOT CONSIDERING HER CHILDS HEALTH SO SHE CAN SMOKE. IF SHE IS NOT WILLING TO TAKE HER HABIT AWAY FROM THE CHILD BY SMOKING OUTSIDE AND NOT IN THE CAR THEN I WOULD TRY AND GET CUSTODY OF THE BOY. HAVE A DOCTOR WRITE A DIAGNOSIS AND THAT SMOKING IS DANGEROUS AROUND THIS CHILD. COPY THE LETTER THEN POLITLY GIVE IT TO HER WITH A LETTER FROM YOU THAT SINCE SHE CONTINUES TO DISREGARD THE CHILDS HEALTH YOU'LL TAKE CUSTODY

Nicole - posted on 04/23/2010

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I have a sister in law that does the same thing with her kids, and its two people smoking in a small apartment. It's unfortunate that people are so thoughtless but especially to the people in Canada we still live in a free country and with that comes personal responsibility. There is always gonna be a percentage of stupid people doing stupid things. But we can't let the Gov't infringe on our freedoms because of a few stupid people. Do u really want the Gov't in your living room. Its all good until the Gov't makes a law against something you like to do. Shannon, I can see that you care for this child and are worried about his well being. If we approach someone negatively or in a judgmental way you will get negative results. I am a follower or Jesus Christ and the best way to reach someone is through the love of Christ and prayer. If u are not a follower I am probably just annoying you at this point but I can't be quiet any longer, This country needs God back in its life not the Gov't. Only faith in God can give us a pure and moral heart not Gov't laws. Oh how I pray for the people of this country! If u seek him you will find him. This probably sounds like I am not even on the subject but I believe all the problem we have big and small are because of the lack of God.

Rosa - posted on 04/23/2010

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In my eyes is both..Its abuse because she is the mother and she feels she can get away with it..Neglect because she is not taking into consideration the well being of her own child. You and your husband should have a serious talk with her about this situation. If things dont change than your husband should consider filling for full custody with monitored visiting right for the mom in a non smoking environment. Wishing you the best.

Melanie - posted on 04/23/2010

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I think it's just an excuse to smoke around her child. My husband smokes but never once has he been near the kids whilst smoking. He smokes outside and then changes tops whe he comes back in. Your child's health should be paramount to anything else. She is ovbiously doing the child harm if he's coughing so much he's sick. People like her annoy me. What gives them the right to harm their child just because she can't stop smoking around her son. Reporting her will hopefully help her son. Good luck xx

Margaret - posted on 04/23/2010

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Very tricky situation unless the doctor can be asked by the child's father to make a positive point to the child's mum that smoking around an asthmatic child is a big no no!



Abuse or neglect?i'm really not sure that you could call it either of those things but very selfish and thoughtless of his mum and probably head in the sand pretend it's not really damaging...

Is she living in a media black spot or something?

Smoking is a very strong addiction for some people and they find it very hard to see it as a huge problem for anyone else!!!

Can dad have gentle word or get custody of the poor little mite?



My daughter was and is still an asthmatic and stress or worry would increase attacks and severity of them also dust and pets!

Be sure not to discuss mum, smoking and results of this in his hearing or grumble about his mum's habit as this could cause him distress and cause attacks to worsen.

Is his dad addressing this issue at all as it really should be down to him...

Marta - posted on 04/23/2010

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I am asthmatic and, when I was a kid, my mother would smoke in the same room as me or in the car when I was in the car with her. She believes that if she has a window open, the smoke will not affect me but I can smell the smoke getting to me and it does make me cough. Furthermore I was advised by doctors that even the cigarete residuals in my moms clothing and furniture could trigger asthma.

As an adult now I am very angry with her for how she smokes and damages her health and we used to have constant fights about her smoking around me were together, which had a bad influence in our relationship. We stopped fighting as much now that I have a todler and she respects my request that she does not smoke in the house when he is with me.

Sitll, I slightly resent her for not resisting her desire to smoke around me, specially when I was a kid and could not speak up for myself.

Maybe if your stepson's mum hears about how I feel towards my mum for smoking around me, she will think twice before smoking around him.

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