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empathy-reborn, Child Care
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 11
Experience:  L3 in CCLD. Acted as a SENCo. Voluntary Exp with Young People of all ages
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Im in a stressful marriage with a SAHM and I adopted her son

Customer Question

I'm in a stressful marriage with a SAHM and I adopted her son who is now 7 and I have a D2 and D due in April. My wife kissed daughter's nose at the dinner table. My son made a suggestion that mommy kissed his boy parts at some time. Mommy told him he shouldn't say something like that. I later asked him about it and he said he had never been kissed. He has made other comments at dinner before about mom throwing stuff at him for instance. I fear my wife has boundary issues with both of our children. Especially Son. Should I just wait and see or seek professional advice or how do I proceed.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Parenting
Expert:  Dr. D. Brown replied 4 years ago.

Dr. D. Brown :

Hello. Please let me take a moment to review your question. Thank you

Dr. D. Brown :

I can completely understand how you might be concerned about boundaries with your wife and children. It is a frightening thought to think that she may be being inappropriate with your son or daughter sexually or in an aggressive manner (eg. throwing things). These are potentially very serious issues, but you need more information. I would suggest that you ask your son, alone, if mom ever did anything, like touch him or throw things, and then asked him not to tell. Ask, "Did she tell you you would be in trouble if you told me or an adult?" This is very common if a parent is, in fact, abusing a child. The child then becomes very afraid of being punished, and usually "takes it back" due to fear.

Dr. D. Brown :

I was a little unclear, but is your daughter 2 years old? If so, she will obviously not be able to speak about anything happening, but both of your children would might "act out" the potential abuse by acting in a sexual manner in their play or at school, or by getting aggressive themselves. Have you seen any of this happen? I would talk to your son's teacher and see how his behavior has been at school. Usually the behavior is a reliable clue that something is going on.

Dr. D. Brown :

If you talk to your son, and he adamantly says "no" to any abuse, then I would just watch the behavior closely, and at the first sign of acting out (which also could include having trouble at school, getting agitated, unruly, morose...), I would seek professional help. You can always call Child Protective Services and tell them you are confused (you can do it anonymously) and ask them to help you assess the situation.

Dr. D. Brown :

I hope this has answered your question. You are a good father to be so "in tune" with your kids, and to want to protect them. But, I wouldn't jump to conclusions quite yet, until you do a bit more research. Call CPS or even call a child psychologist in your area, and discuss your concerns. Observe carefully and finally, do a "gut check" with yourself. If your gut says it's happening, I would take action. Remind your son that you are there to protect him, no matter what, and that he can trust you.

Dr. D. Brown :

Please let me know if there is anything more I can help you with. I always appreciate a positive rating if you feel I have satisfactorily answered your question. Take good care and keep your eyes open. Thank you for the opportunity to be of service.

Dr. D. Brown :

Thanks again, Dr. Brown

JACUSTOMER-6td8ka71- :

I haven't jumped to conclusions. I don't want my feelings that my wife likely suffers from BPD to result in me starting some false allegations but my gut is my wife has poor impulse control. I also don't want to ignore red flags. Maybe I will briefly contact the forensic psychologist I consulted two years ago. Thanks

Expert:  empathy-reborn replied 4 years ago.
In my experience as a childcare practitioner, one can never be too careful. When I child makes a disclosure as such as this one it needs to be dealt with in a manner that is positive for the child. My best suggestion is to talk to the child in normal conversation. If such a disclosure is made again you need to write down everything the child has said and write a date and time and sign it. Then you need to reassure the child that it cannot remain a secret but let them know that they are not in trouble and they have done the right thing. Next you need to contact the appropriate authorities ie police and ask them what they suggest you do. Should you have any more questions feel free to ask me personally.

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