Have Mental Health Questions? Ask a Psychiatrist Online
Hello, I am Rafael. Thanks for asking your question - I'm here to support you. (Information posted here is not private or confidential but public).
I am very sorry to know about this episode your daughter experienced.
Has she told you why she decided to talk about it after 1.5 years and what leads her to believe it was her step father if she did not see anybody?
Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX had recently gotten in a little trouble at school, nothing serious but I pushed her as to why she has been acting angry with her stepfather and she told me what happened. she says that she had felt uncomfortable around him for some time and that she "knows" it was him.
You could consider looking for a professional psychotherapist or counselor online, one who offers online support through live chat, or video conference, this way you would not have to wait to long for getting initial professional help while waiting for the face-to-face appointment to happen.
I have been married to my husband for 10 years together for 15 and known him almost all my life. He is not this person. He is extremely upset and sad that she thinks he could do this. He just wants to help her and is willing to do whatever we need to to make her feel safe again.
Have you noticed during all these years of living together and during the past 1.5 years any behavioral changes in her, or suspicious behaviors leading you to believe such a serious problem could have happened?
This is truly sad and frustrating for all of you, and for sure serious for her to firmly state she knows it has him while at the same time she says she did not see anybody, and for this to appear right after starting to have problems at school.
Not anything imparticular. She has always "acted out" since she was young, even as a small child but there is nothing that changed drastically in the last while. I only noticed her behaviour towards him had changed in the last couple of months.
Is this your only child?
She has always had problems at school, this latest one was a very small incident. It only began the conversation.
She is my only child but my husband has 2 sons as well,
I totally support your decision to look for professional support as soon as possible in order to work on finding out the core issues behind this behaviors. Her acting out from young age, is a chronic problem you know about, and would make sense why this other episode, a much more serious for sure could be arising.
Has she got counseling or psychotherapeutic support before for any problematic behavior?
No she has not, we have always dealt with it at home, always seemed like "typical" behaviour. I really don't think that she is lying, I do feel that something happened but not her stepfather. I am worried that I am not handling it properly, she has said a few times that this ruins everything, I think that she is wanting me to leave but I know my husband and I know that he has not done this.
If she did not see anybody, but continues to state it was him, that could show this could be one more issue related to past ones, and I think this concerning situation could become the best chance for you to work on making changes for her to improve the way she takes care of herself, copes and express her feelings. She is already an adult and needs to work on herself to be able to create a healthy and fulfilling life by herself. If there was any form of abuse at such party, then she would need to work on what happened with professional support.
This could be truly frustrating and perhaps overwhelming for anybody in your shoes, and again, the fact she is stating it happened, but that she did not see nor do anything but is convinced it was her step father is very concerning and needs to be clarified, since it does not only affects her own mental health and life, but the whole family well-being.
I have made numerous calls and fully intend to arrange counselling but I fear that I am hurting her by not leaving but if I do leave it will ultimately hurt her more as well as the whole family.
If I had any doubt in my mind I wouldn't even hesitate, I would leave.
She needs and deserves support as well as you and your husband in order to cope with this painful situation, and since it's a family issue, professional support seems essential. Absolutely. Leaving would just reinforce an irrational behavior. If she says she was sexually touched a year ago , then you'll work on it with professional support, but to expect or demand you to leave your husband because she believes it was him, when she is stating she did not see anybody, would be unacceptable and create further issues.
Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX I just needed someone to tell me that I am not completely wrong. I have not spoken with anyone about this other than my husband and my daughter. I will continue to look for a therapist here and arrange counselling. I just don't want to cause anymore damage to my daughter especially or to our family.
By leaving you would reinforce her believe which is not based on reality but on an unreasonable idea not supported by any concrete fact. She has a history of acting out behaviors from childhood, and your husband has always shown consistency as a respectful and caring spouse and father, right> She is telling you it was him but without providing any good reason to support such accusation. If that's the case, following her demands now would just enable the whole illusion, and this is a very serious situation that needs to be addressed in very assertive ways.
He has always treated her as his own.
You cannot cause any damage if your actions are led by respect, reason, responsibility and caring, and not by impulse, fear or codependent enabling.
Please take this painful circumstance as the chance you needed to get necessary support for her and for all of you to work on supporting her and taking better care of your family well-being. the professional psychotherapist would know how to assess her and support her and you through this process.
both of us would do anything to stop our kids from hurting. It kills me that this has happened but we will work through it and figure it all out. I appreciate the chat, sometimes it just takes someone to let me know that I am not wrong. It really helps.
This is a time where your support system should play an active role for you to be able to process this experience, heal and grow stronger from it.
You're very welcome. As a parent I do relate to your feelings and concerns, please be unconditionally gentle, patient, understanding and supportive with yourself and towards your daughter and husband. In this way you would be taking good care of yourself and supporting them in healthy and constructive ways too.
I have tried to ensure that I do that up to this point and I will continue to do so. Thank you for taking the time to chat. I will continue to look in our area for a therapist. this has really helped me.
Sounds very assertive. Thank you for your trust. Please feel free to contact me back for any further support.