is it ok to give my kids to their dad while my boyfriend recover's from addictions?

Connie - posted on 03/23/2011 ( 30 moms have responded )




I am new here and i hope i can find the awnsers i am looking for,I have been the sole parent of my kids for some time now and i have been having a hard time,about 3 months ago i found the love of my life,he is wonderfull with my kids and great to me,he is also an alcholoc,i love him so much and he wants to get help,childrens services feels like the kids should not be here during the time he is recovering,i feel the same,i am trying to do what is best for my kids and their dad has been wanting to spend time with them,i would miss them sooooo much but i alms feel guilty taking time from them to help my boyfriend,they would be gone for a couple of months,I am also haveing a lot of medical problems that could be dealt with in this time frame,I just need to know that i am doing the right thing here,my kids are ages 4-13 and there are 5 of them,my boyfriend has a past but has never been givin a helping hand for the future,we want to get married someday but unless he shows effort and improvement to the courts then he cant be around the kids,please help,and please dont bash me for the dicisions i am making...


[deleted account]

You met the guy 3 months ago and he's already living in your home w/ you and your children? No offense, but if anyone needs to leave that house.... it's the boyfriend.

Basically what you are saying is that for several months you are choosing a guy you met 3 months ago over the safety and well being of your children. If you are ok w/ that.... go for it, but it's really not a decision I can even begin to comprehend.

Carolyn - posted on 03/23/2011




I am also curious as to why Child Services are involved.

You realize that in order to appease the courts and child services, he will most likely need to leave and complete a treatment program ? And it would be in his own best interest to live in a recovery home/ half way house ( which ever term is used in your area) for atleast 3-6 months.

The stress of being insta father to 5 children is not one he needs while trying to recover. And any shred of decency in him , would cause some serious feelings of guilt watching your sorrow being away from your kids, especially since shame and guilt play a huge role in why alcoholics continue to keep drinking.

I would be very careful in your shoes, you might just be taken on one hell of a ride, and not a good one.

If you guys were married, and they were his children or you were in a longterm committed relationship, I could imagine considering having my children cared for by their father, considering at best.

I dont think its necessarily right to displace 5 children for the sake of someone you barely know. ( in all honesty, in the grand scheme of things, you barely know him) I have a hard time saying " go away and rip your kids out of their home and away from the only parent they have known".

Then again I am also pretty jaded from my work, seeing addict/alcoholic after addict/alcoholic take advantage of people and their good intentions. Not all , but many do. The fact that he would let you do this, speaks volumes , and it doesnt say very good things.

I know its not what you want to hear, but just trying to get you to see the seriousness and reality of what you contemplating.

Amber - posted on 03/23/2011




I have an alcoholic father. If my mother had ever sent me away so that she could spend her time and energy on him, I would not have been able to forgive either of them. And that was my real father.
My mom finally left him when I was 13 and I got a step dad at 15 who is a great guy. Had he not been a great guy and my mom picked him over me...I wouldn't have forgiven either of them either.

This isn't a long standing, committed relationship. This is a new relationship. I don't even let knew friends meet my kid before they've been around a year or so. I've never had to worry about introducing him to a boyfriend because I'm with his father. But it wouldn't be until several months down the road, and he wouldn't live with my child and I for a whole lot longer than that.

Having children is a lifetime commitment. You made that commitment. You don't have a commitment to this man.

If you can't take care of your kids and need to get your life together, then they should go to their dad. But it shouldn't be based on a man that you don't know.

No man should ever come before the well being of your children.

Jodi - posted on 03/23/2011




I must admit, I'm with Teresa. You have only known this man for 3 months. Personally, I would not choose him over my children. It's awfully soon in a relationship for you to be making these sort of sacrifices. When I met my current husband, it was over 12 months before we moved in together, because I wanted to be sure that it wasn't going to be a yo-yo in and out of my son's life. Heck, it was 3 months before my son even MET him. So, no, I don't think you should do it.

Can I ask why Child Services is involved at all?

Jodi - posted on 03/25/2011




So, let me get this straight. You are suggesting the OP sends her kids off and then IF her bf makes no effort, kick him out and then get them back.

I REALLY have a problem with putting a boyfriend before the children. Period. I don't care how devoted this boyfriend is. If he is that damn devoted, he will pull his finger out, do something about it and would NEVER expect you to compromise your children. EVER. You want to give him a chance??? Tell him to get sober and THEN come back to you. If that isn't incentive enough, then he isn't worth it.


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Rachel - posted on 03/26/2011




Your children come first. He can go away somewhere to get the help he needs if he is serious. You should really think about what kind of person you are letting in your childrens lives. Will they understand on day? Perhaps. Or perhaps they will decide that you chose an alcoholic man you hardley knew over your own children. Think about what you are asking. It would be diffrent if you were the one with the addiction.

Valarie - posted on 03/26/2011




I was about to say that why do people think it is okay to send your kids away when times are tough. As a mother you should be doing everything in your power to help yourself and if you need to go away for treatment or aren't able to care for them for a medical reason then fine.
People can only give you the answer you want to hear if they don't know the whole story. You can do what you want without the support of others.
I have put myself in situations that were bad choices for my kids and selfish of me. It all came to a head when I had to put my bf in jail. I was sad and confused but my daughter said she did not want him back and I knew that would have to be the end of it even if my mind and heart were confused at the time. My parent's wanted me to send my daughter to live with them so I could work through it and that was never an option. Grow Up! I'm not being mean or judgmental. You bring a child into the world then you take responsibility for them and what YOU want doesn't matter anymore. That's a fact not a judgment.

Lucy - posted on 03/26/2011




Hi Connie, You sound like you are really struggling. Have you ever heard of the group Al-Anon? They are a wonderful support group for families and friends of Alcoholics. You are not alone. There will be a group in your area. Just google Al-Anon to find your nearest meeting. They have turned my life around... Good luck. Take care of you and the rest will follow...

Elizabeth - posted on 03/25/2011




I can appreciate how difficult a situation you are in..on the one hand ..You are a mom #1 for the rest of their lives and on the other hand you have found a man which you have fallen hard for.
Love has a way of fogging up your vision. The one thing I know and know for sure with 100% certainty is that your children NEED you. You mentioned that you want a life with this man. Do you think your children won't feel abandoned you haven't chosen him over them? I am sure they will have all those feelings. They need stability ..they need to know their mom is there for them NO matter what happens. Please please don't choose your boyfriend over your kids.
What feels right today might night work out in the end but the one relationship you can be sure of that of your children.
Do the right thing. Send him to a relative's house, but don't send your kids away.

Freda - posted on 03/25/2011




sorry but no get rid of th boyfriend, when he has been sober and stable and has a job car ect and going to aa then maybe but i would never put my kids out for some man, nope no way no how, if he loves you and the kid he will go away and get himself together and come back if not hes not worth putting your kids off and their dad may file for custody if he has them that long, i say throw the alcoholic out of the house and keep your kids, i grew up with an alcoholic father and they will always be alcoholics no matter what they say i know for a fact, get rid of him now before its too late give him the boot sorry if that sounds harsh but put your kids first or they will resent you

Ruthie - posted on 03/25/2011




Sending your kids away for a while can be an ok thing. I would sugest to at least visit them from time to time. You can give your boyfriend some time to try and make changes however if he dose not show effort I would have to say kick him and get your kids back.

Chelsea - posted on 03/24/2011




i don't want to bash either. I am a new om and I understand how hard being a good mom can seem sometimes, especially when you are ill. However, having been a) a child left behind for a man and b)in love with an alcoholic I have to say...if you feel that you cannot properly care for your children then they may be better off with their father but even if that does occur, the boyfriend needs to go. It sounds like you have your own issues to sort out before you should attempt to tackle a thankless and often time futile mission to save an alcoholic. I feel for you but you made the choice to be a be one. Children are precious and they love their moms so much.

Erica - posted on 03/24/2011




I hav VERY MIXED feelings about this...I dont want to bash at all but he needs to do this on his own!!!! I understand you really want to help him but sometimes helping people we love is making them stand on their own 2 feet.
I do agree that make the summer with dad would be a good idea, but make sure they know it is vacation not living there. They will soon resent you for this desicion is my worry.
I hope it all works out for you in the end

Valarie - posted on 03/24/2011




Having been in a similar situation thinking a guy needs a chance...your making a mistake. Your children will always be your children and you don't know for sure about the bf. I agree with the others you are choosing a man over your children and that is a foolish and selfish decision. If he loves you he can move out and get sober first then you two can be together.

Rachel - posted on 03/24/2011




I completly agree with the other women. I have dealt with alcoholics and the one main thing i have learned is that you CAN NOT help them they have to want to help themselves. I personally would never want to be around my mother if she would have chosen to take care of my father and sent me somewhere else. Either you want to be a mom or not. I have sever medical problems but would not send my children away to take care of them. My kids are my life. This guy needs to get his act together and get his life right before he should be apart of your childrens lives or your life. 3 months is not long enough to know if you want to be with someone forever you may not like the person he is when he isnt drinking? you never know or he may be too addicted to ever be clean. Alcohol addiction doesnt just fix its self in a few months it takes years of meetings and therapy to recover. There may be a reason for his addiction. From first hand knowledge dealing with addicted people is hard but if he has any deacency in him he will not be around you or those kids until he is clean. My father left me when I was 1 because he knew his addiction was too strong and he was no good around me. I missed not having him in my life and always wonder what things would have been like but that was the best thing he knew how to do for me. Take care of your kids and get this guy out of your life until he can get his act together. If you want to talk i am here. Good luck please make the right decision or your children may resent you for chosing him over them.

Carolyn - posted on 03/24/2011




You have only known him for three months and you are willing to upset your childrens lives, I really don't understand this. Their father needs to be in their lives, if he is a decent person, however age 4 is too young to be away from Mommy for 2 months. Think about this, your children should come first and when the boyfriend recovers, if it is true love, he will be back in your life.
Please be aware of strangers in your childrens lives. good luck and I will say a prayer for you and the children.

Jackie - posted on 03/24/2011




I'm sorry, I just cannot keep my mouth shut on this one....

Let me make sure I'm understanding this correctly - You met a man 3 months ago that has a bad enough addiction that the courts have said that he cannot be around your children but you love him soooo much that you're willing to displace your CHILDREN for this man? I have to wonder why the courts are involved in the first place....

He is a grown ass man that should take care of his own responsibilities. You can't "fix" him and why would you? Your kids should always be #1, not some ass hole you just met. I'm willing to bet it's his idea that the kids go, isn't it? Where was he living when you met that he could just move in with you at the drop of a hat?

Wisen up girl. You are choosing a man over your kids. Shameful.

Jane - posted on 03/23/2011




How about your boyfriend moves out and the kids do not get uprooted from the only home they know. You should be putting your kids first, not your boyfriend. There is no bashing here but you need to choose your children first and foremost. If your boyfriend really loves you, he will understand. If he really loves you, he'll get clean and sober.

Jenni - posted on 03/23/2011




If it were me... I'd be sending him away until he recovers. My kids come first before any man. I could never choose anyone else over them including my husband (their father).

Sneaky - posted on 03/23/2011




The basic problem is that it doesn't matter if you send your kids away or not - you can NOT 'help' him, HE is the only one that can help himself, you can only watch from the outside and make supportive comments.

But personally, I think that if he is your priority then your kids would be better off with their father - maybe they should live there permanently?

[deleted account]

Ok, this sounds like one very long excuse to me. You children come first PERIOD. You boyfriend is an adult who can fend for himself. Therefore he should leave! NEVER EVER EVER CHOOSE A MAN OVER YOUR CHILDREN. If he really is the love of your life, he'll come back when he's sober. If not, then I guess you'll know the truth.

Kate CP - posted on 03/23/2011




I don't think your children should be around an alcoholic at all. I can't believe you let him move in with you after just three months. O.o

Nikki - posted on 03/23/2011




I'm with the other ladies, no it's not ok. Like Jenn said get him to go to a treatment centre or stay somewhere else until he has recovered. If you are really meant to be together then he will come back to you when he is better. These are your children, they need to take priority over someone you have known for 3 months.

Stifler's - posted on 03/23/2011




I can't agree with the decision you are making. Sending your kids away so your boyfriend of 3 months can recover from alcoholism isn't really the right thing to do by your kids. It's not a 2 week thing, it might take months. Sorry kids... you can't come home yet your new step dad isn't ready. Like Jenn said he needs to go to a treatment facility if he can't be around your kids until he's sober.

Jenn - posted on 03/23/2011




I'm with the other ladies. This man needs to go elsewhere to get the help he needs. If it's really true love, then once he's clean and sober, he'll come back to you and life can move forward. I would keep your kids with you, and make him go to a treatment centre.

[deleted account]

I also agree that in just 3 months you are ready to chose a man over your children? It's not something I could truly comprehend either. If this man is your "love" then love has to grow, blossom, and mature. Right now it's in such an early stage of a relationship that he needs to work on himself in order to be a loving husband and father-figure to your children. It's not fair to have your children near someone who could be a potential risk. Sure, the guy can be in a treatment program, but it's a risk I would not want my children to be exposed to. On teh other hand, it sounds like you are overwhelmed in the parenting department if there is a court intervention in place. If you and the kid's father can come up with a mutual agreement for a temporary living arrangement, it might beneficial to you to take care of yourself. NOT for the sake of a guy you've known for 3 months. Recovery is a process, not something instantly accomplished in 12 weeks. The very best thing you can do as a parent is keep your kids safe. If that means with their father in a safe setting, then that should be the priority. But you could avoid disrupting their school, living arrangements, and overall well-being if you chose your kids over a guy.

♥TIA♥ - posted on 03/23/2011




Well, I must say...married someday? c'mon. If he can't seriously commit, what makes you think he will go through it all. Especially if you have to make such a drastic decision to sacrifice your sole children. I feel no real commitment as far as engagement, he should go. Not your children. IF he can commit to you and your children than make your decisions on FIRM GROUNDS what can and cannot be tolerated by him for your kids sake. Other than that. If it's family foundation you both are trying to achieve. Truth isn't a bad thing to live with. If the children see him go through his trials for a better future with you and them. I don't see why anyone needs to leave. As long as YOU be FIRM with your conditions. That any set backs HE does and NO EXCUSES. Than he would have to leave. It's easy to talk the talk get rid of another womans kids and give and take to destroy you. But it's not easy to step up and be a responsible adult/man and do what's right. If your not easy than you know what to do. If your easy, than know what to do. I have seen this kinds of things before and witnessed vicious cycles of lies. But when there is a foundation to work on with commitment. There is faith and there can be a way. As a family based situation, it works more than being a one way street. You shouldn't have to sacrifice your kids at any cost for someone else's weaknesses and failures. The children did not make the choice to drink. Good luck in what ever decisions you make. I will pray for you and your family. And based on personal friends and dealing with children in your children situation. I do know being sent away for someone mom just met, does hurt. And after their lives together with you, if it works out that man will have a whole lot of work to make up to them for being second to moms heart, their heart. if it doesn't work out. You will have to pray and very much probably have to work hard to gain their trust again that they will not be pawned off for the next sweet talking man that comes around.

Tarina - posted on 03/23/2011




How far away does their father live? You make it sound like the time they would be away you would not be able to see/speak to them? I think the older kids will understand and be supportive - the youngest might have a hard time with it, but if its only for a few months - there are ways to spin it so they dont feel bad, you could try to get them excited about it -- maybe consider the summertime as a vacation with dad - that way no school years are affected, no after school activities or anything get interrupted - and there are less hurt feelings which are bound to come up eventually. Here's something to consider, though: your boyfriend, if the courts have stated he cannot be around your children unless he gets clean - is he going to rehab? or is he trying to do this himself? Unless HE is putting 100% of his efforts into this, I would question if he is going to work hard enough to make the changes he needs to. A few months with their dad while things are straightened out at home wont hurt your kids in the least, it might even be really good for them! But you need to think if this is the only time you will need to do this? What if the boyfriend relapses, what will the plan be? Drop them back off for a couple more months? Just be sure you lay ground rules with everyone --like tell the Boyfriend "yes, I am going to stand by you through this, so that we can be a family - but you need to understand the seriousness of the sacrifice I am making, and respect it and me enough to put ALL your efforts into this every day from now on" --

I do wish you so much luck with this - only you can really know what the right thing to do here is, I would just suggest to proceed with caution - there are alot of relationships at stake with the decisions you make in the near future - your ex, your kids, your boyfriend. Remember in the end your kids have to come first, and do whats best for THEM, and you'll come out on top!

Louise - posted on 03/23/2011




I think your older children will understand and will help your youngest to understand to. Just make sure you stay in touch with them via skype or something so they do not feel abandoned and have access to talk to you often.

I think if this man is making this much effort to be a family then you owe him a couple of months of your time. If you can get yourself back to health at the same time even better. I hope together you can tackle your demons and you all have a bright and happy future.

♏*PHOENIX*♏ - posted on 03/23/2011




I wont be bashing.
I know all to well what its like to live and be around an alcoholic.
I think that is a good thing to do, sending the kids with their father.
What can be the harm in that? Nothing.

Don’t feel bad, and I hope that it works out for you all

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