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#56898 - 07/18/05 03:32 AM A male survivor seeking advice
outis Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 2260
Loc: Maryland USA
Hi, gang,

It's been a long time since I've been active here. I've spent a lot of my online time at another site which supports folks trying to save troubled marriages, or going through divorce.

FWIW, I'm past the "trying to save" stage.

Anyway, after my wife left me and the kids (and her mother! ) this winter, eventually the kids starting visiting with her. And my youngest son began showing some behaviors that set off all kinds of alarms for me. Trying to touch people with his penis, exposing himself to other kids. I had a report from his school about him exposing himself to classmates. I talked to him about it, without any condemning or threat of punishment, just to tell him that some parts of his body are private, etc. Things seemed to settle down after that. (I should mention that I have had him in counseling for a few months now, and I mentioned this to her when it happened.)

This past week my kids have been staying with my wife to visit with her brother, their "favorite uncle," while he's in town. Yesterday I went to the movies with my oldest son and my brother in law. On the ride to the cinema I heard them joking, "That's like when {youngest son} humps the couch." I asked what that was about and they told me that my youngest son "pulls down his pants and 'humps' the couch cushion." They seemed to think this is very funny, and the way they talked about it, it sounds to me like it's not uncommon.

The last time something happened like this with him here at home, I told him again about private parts being private. I also told him, "If anyone tries to touch your private places, or tries to make you touch them, you can tell me and I will make them stop." He replied, "What if it's someone who doesn't live here?" sending chills through me. I guess I should also mention that my wife went through 3 boyfriends (that I know of) in 2004 and she has taken the kids to the current boyfriend's place several times. My oldest calls him "weird" and told me he doesn't like to go there. She has the boyfriend over her place regularly. In fact, he has a key to the TH which she and I still jointly own. I don't.

I talked to a counselor today about this. I have no proof anyone has harmed him. I have only the behaviors I have witnessed and now the news that this kind of behavior is considering amusing over at the TH. I was so afraid of over reacting as a survivor myself, and worried that no one would believe me. What if there is an abuser with access to him and people discard my concerns because we're going through a divorce, or because they think I see monsters where there are none?

Today I was talking with a guy from the other site. I said that this is "not normal behavior for a 5 year old boy." He replied, "My 5 year old doesn't do anything like that." That made me realize just how "not normal" this is.

I decided I can't take the chance that something evil is happening. I don't have any direct proof of SA. But the on call counselor today told me I am not over reacting. That's what I want to believe. So in the morning I will call my son's counselor, tell her about the "highly amusing humping the couch" story, and ask her at what point we need to take this to Child Protective Services.

Good idea, right? Better safe than sorry.

Thanks,

Joe

_________________________
"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbroken…"—The Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse

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#56899 - 07/18/05 04:44 AM Re: A male survivor seeking advice
ScottyTodd Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 02/12/03
Posts: 1561
Loc: Pennsylvania
Joe - IMHO This is not normal behavior. A 5 year old may be curious and humping the couch may feel good 'experimenting' but stops upon redirection. The fact he pulls his pants down in public and humps the couch is "out of bounds". The fact he is exposing himself on several occassions in school is suspect. It is probably worth your investigation with a counselor. Let me know what unfolds here!!

Howard

_________________________
If you think you can or you can't - you're right!.......anon
It's never too late to have a happy childhood!.....anon
You're very normal for the abnormal situation you've been through..............S. Todd

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#56900 - 07/18/05 08:04 AM Re: A male survivor seeking advice
Caetel Offline
Member

Registered: 11/05/03
Posts: 322
Loc: Paris, France
I agree with that, it is definately not a normal behaviour and without proper words your kid is calling for help.
I know how triggereing it can be for you, I was in the same situation in February 2004 when I realized my niece was being abused (she was 6 at the time). The abuser was my father, just like me but the thought of her going through the same hell as me gave me the courage to act and press charges.
Be aware also that not wanting to go to this guy's place is also a clear warning sign. Something isn't safe there for them !

Caro

_________________________
Mitakuye oyasin ! We are all related !

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#56901 - 07/18/05 12:40 PM Re: A male survivor seeking advice
reality2k4 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/06/04
Posts: 6838
Loc: Stuck between water, air, and ...
This sounds like acting out behaviour, I do not think that a 5yo would do these things.

It might be best to also ask the counsellor to explore what he means by 'weird', this could be a valuable pointer to find out.

If these things are happening, then early intervention has to be the way, but it is difficult with a 5yo, because they do not have the verbal skills to really tell you what is going on.

ste

_________________________
Whoever stole the Sun, put it back and we'll drop all the charges!

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#56902 - 07/18/05 02:27 PM Re: A male survivor seeking advice
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Outis,

I would definitely pursue this with someone who has the professional skills to judge the situation. This sounds like a call for help.

In the course of trying to cope with my own situation a few years ago I noticed that a much younger relative was changing a lot and in radical ways: cheap and very provocative clothing, heavy makeup, and very rebellious behavior. I thought about this a lot and feared I was over-reacting, but finally I told her mother I feared she was doing all this as a response to some kind of abuse. It turned out that she had been date-raped at the age of 14. She has been getting help and is a lot happier now.

Hindsight is always 20/20, I know. But I sure am glad I spoke up!

Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#56903 - 07/18/05 06:06 PM Re: A male survivor seeking advice
SAR Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 3310
Loc: USA
Joe, I am so glad to see you back, but sorry it has to be with all these troubles.

You are reacting like a concerned parent, and I agree a call to your son's counselor is in order.

Keep us posted.


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#56904 - 07/19/05 12:47 AM Re: A male survivor seeking advice
outis Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 2260
Loc: Maryland USA
Thanks, folks.

Let me clear up some stuff.

I have no concrete evidence that he is being or has been abused. I have only the observation of these acting out behaviors, and the new knowledge that he acts out like this when he's over with his mother. She doesn't tell anyone, since she claims "the kids don't need counseling."

The comment about her boyfriend being weird came from my 13 year old son, not the 5 year old. I don't ask questions because I don't want to pressure him to "tell on his mother," if you know what I mean.

I did call his C this morning, and this afternoon she told me she is concerned. She isn't jumping to any conclusions, either, but she is concerned that he is acting out this way. As you mentioned, Howard, she told me that pulling down his pants is a specific behavior that's not part of a 5 year old finding out some things feel good.

It's possible he witnessed something, not even necessarily in person, but even on tv, and he got attention when he copied it.

He has his regular appointment on Thursday. His C will be on the lookout for any signs of trouble. If I can get him there. His mother did not bring him back home today with the older two. She's holding him hostage in an attempt to make me agree to her terms in the divorce.

This is an ugly situation right now, and my kids are getting the $hitty end of the stick.

Thanks,

Joe

_________________________
"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbroken…"—The Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse

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#56905 - 07/19/05 11:26 AM Re: A male survivor seeking advice
reality2k4 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/06/04
Posts: 6838
Loc: Stuck between water, air, and ...
Joe, I thought the same thing as the C, maybe he did witness them doing things.

He maybe copying things that he saw them do, and that is abuse, because he should not witness these things.

I think you need to have a word with the C, and have powers to remove these kids, pending further investigation.

It is hard, when going thru divorce, because it can be seen that you are using false accusations, to have custody.

Your concerns are valid, and you should act upon them, I hope it all works out,

ste

_________________________
Whoever stole the Sun, put it back and we'll drop all the charges!

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#56906 - 07/20/05 02:24 AM Re: A male survivor seeking advice
Pollyanna Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/10/03
Posts: 211
Loc: Missouri
Wow do I feel red flashing lights of alarm all over the place.

I've been around quite a few 5 year old little boys, and if they have a "healthy" environment, they just don't "hump" stuff! It just isn't something that enters their minds. In our state, just exposing a young child to such things, whether in person, on a video, verbally, or whatever, constitutes child abuse and action is taken.

If the child's mother is acting irresponsibly, she has no business having private unsupervised visits. Unfortunately, if the divorce isn't final, there's probably no custody stuff established so whoever has the kids at the time, has the kids.

I agree with Ste, pull some strings, throw some weight around...whatever, to keep her visits limited or supervised pending investigation.

I do NOT think you are overreacting in the least. I also think you are going the right direction by involving counsellors, because then it is documented when you need it, and it won't be seen as a power play.

Good luck, and I hope you get him home soon.

Hugs,
Lynn

(Edited cuz I went to read something, and left something else hanging in mid air!)

_________________________
"Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come. You wait and watch and work: you don't give up."

– Anne Lamott

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#56907 - 07/20/05 02:35 AM Re: A male survivor seeking advice
outis Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/27/03
Posts: 2260
Loc: Maryland USA
Ste,

I have spoken to the C, and today to my lawyer.

Let me emphasize that I have never had any evidence of abuse besides seeing the innappropriate behaviors. And today my oldest son had a different story. The five year old "never took off his pants to hump the couch. He did that when he was sliding his butt on the floor like a dog or cat."

I'm about as confused as I can be now.

We were at the courthouse today, and my wife will continue to hold my son hostage "until you (Joe) sign an agreement." I'm afraid for his mental and emotional well being just being with her. In the past 11 days with her the boy who ran into my arms each time I picked him up from school or camp has stopped talking to me when I call. He got on the phone tonight to say he doesn't want to talk to me. I said I love him and he said, "Well, I don't."

I will update his C when I can get in touch with her. My wife is making me ill with the way she's treating him as a pawn. And so help me, if I ever find out that she is hurting him or allowing someone else to hurt him, she'll wish there were only Hell to pay.

Thanks,

Joe

_________________________
"Telemachos, your guest is no discredit to you. I wasted no time in stringing the bow, and I did not miss the mark. My strength is yet unbroken…"—The Odyssey, translated by W.H.D. Rouse

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