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Topic: Help!!!

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Subject: Help!!!
Date Posted: 10/9/2007 7:57 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2007
Posts: 729
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Thank you for all the advice! :)

Last Edited on: 10/16/07 4:00 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/9/2007 9:16 PM ET
Member Since: 4/4/2006
Posts: 40
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I don't know the whole situation, so it's hard to offer advice, bit if your ex is abusing drugs, he shouldn't be anywhere near your child.  I had a similar situation with my ex, only I was fortunate enough that my ex cared so little about us that when I asked him to stay out of our lives, he did.  I would definately take some form of legal action regarding your son's visitations with his father.  You don't want to chance having anything bad happen while he's in your ex's "care".  Be sure to mention that he's not only an absent father, he's also a drug absuer, etc.  Unless your ex has any court documents stating that he can "give you until the first of the year", I wouldn't get too upset over it.  Let's be real, who's going to side with a drug addict who's neglected their child?  I'm positive if you went to court and presented the fact that this man has not been in your child's life other than being a sperm donor or occassional sleepover companion for your son, that a judge would rule in your favor.

I also homeschool, so I know the ins and outs of the whole "am I doing the right thing", "are they learning anything", "am I a bad mother" questions.  I found K-12 virtual academy, which is a home-based public school.  They supply all the curriculum for your child/children and monitor their progress.  You're still the teacher, and you're responsible for the learning that goes on in your household, but you have a support system.  They also provide different clubs to support your child's inner social butterfly, so they don't feel like they're being cooped up at home too much.  The groups I belong to allow all homeschoolers, so those who weren't interested in joining the virtual academy can still come out and have a good time.

Date Posted: 10/9/2007 9:51 PM ET
Member Since: 11/29/2006
Posts: 1,670
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I agree with Christina!  Is there a custody order in place?

Date Posted: 10/9/2007 10:14 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2007
Posts: 729
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Thank you for all the advice! :)

Last Edited on: 10/16/07 4:00 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/10/2007 12:13 AM ET
Member Since: 12/5/2005
Posts: 20
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So you keep meticulous records and make sure your son has activities that he enjoys doing with other homeschoolers. Maybe your son said something to his father one day when he was having a bad day. Yes, homeschooled kids do have bad days! If your ex is as reasonable as you've said, he will weigh the evidence you've gathered about how great homeschooling is for your son and give you his support. Homeschooling is hard, especially when you're a single mom homeschooling a son. I know this because I was a single mom homeschooling my five children--four of them boys. Make sure you have a support network. Also, it might not hurt to have your son evaluated by a teacher who is homeschool friendly. Sometimes when an ex sees that a professional is backing you up, they are more impressed. Improved test scores compared to public school test scores are also helpful to show reluctant exes.

Michele

Date Posted: 10/10/2007 7:44 AM ET
Member Since: 4/11/2007
Posts: 1,640
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Sounds as if you ex is just trying to continue to control you!  Did you have to get his permission to homeschool in the first place?  Drugs do funky things to people.  While he may be a great dad any other time his choice to do drugs overrides any good influence he can do as a parent.  His veiled threat to send ds back to school sounds more like a control issue than a real threat.

You didn't mention how old your son was, but I would consider looking into some legal help to determine who has rights. While it may be working out so far, how many more years are you going to have to deal with your ex? If his drug use continues, is that a lifestyle you want you son exposed to as a teenager?  There may come a time when you have to step in and make a hard choice about if his father is fit to be around.  It would be good to have custody issues lined out before any problems arise. 

I agree about the support group.  Find people who will uplift and edify you.  Stand your ground.  Homeschooled kids have bad days, homeschooling parents have bad days. We are only human. 

Date Posted: 10/10/2007 12:43 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2007
Posts: 4
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You ask for help, but then defend you ex's behavior.  You need to stand up for yourself and your son.  You need counseling.  You need to realize that your ex is a substance abuser, and just because he "shuts himself off from everyone until he's through" he's still a danger to you, your son, himself, etc.  That behavior is NOT OKAY.  To subject your son to that sort of behavior is not okay.  You say your son is on medication?  Is your ex in charge of dispensing this medication?  While he's high?  Stop making excuses for him.  If he was a good dad, he'd recognize that he needs help.  Ask him to go into a treatment program before he spends anymore time with your son.  If he becomes beligerent (sp?), it's time for court.

I'm not trying to make you feel bad about the situation in any way, but I've watched the same cycle in other people.  You want help, but are unwilling to do anything but make excuses for your former loved one.  If he's a great man/dad, then you owe it to him and your family to help this man get clean.  It is not your responsibility to apologize of make excuses for this person.  He is an adult and his number 1 priority should be to working with you to do what's best for your child.

Date Posted: 10/10/2007 5:20 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2007
Posts: 729
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Christina, I think you are getting me confused with others you know. I make no excuses for my ex. I only described how he is with my son so as not to give evryone the impression that I am the "wronged party". I believe in telling both sides of a story. It's too easy to tell people your side of a story & get a lot of sympathy. I wanted to try to be clear so that I would have a place to vent I guess or just get advice. I am also not one of those people that you say ask for help & then won't do anything about it. My son is well taken care of & protected. I have had many years of experience with drug users, so I do know what to look for & that you cannot force someone to do something against their will. He is looking into treatment, but I will not treat him as anything less than a human being just because he has a problem or because I get upset with him. I am an addict myself. I smoke cigarettes! It doesn't make me a bad person, just someone with a problem. My son is in between his meds at the moment & no his father doesn't have to give him anything. But I will stress that he would NEVER come around when he has been using so my son has never been exposed to that at all. The only reason he knows about it now is because I told him. I didn't think it would be good to keep it from him, & have him wonder why his Dad who was always around or available before wasn't around as much. I have read here more than once that parents know best for their kids. Some do I agree & I am one of them. I would never risk either of my boys. It is so hard to convey precise detail on the internet. Things get muddled or read wrong or taken wrong & then misunderstandings abound! More later. My fingers are tired. :)

Last Edited on: 10/10/07 5:23 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/10/2007 5:29 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2006
Posts: 181
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I worry for your son being in your ex-husband's presence without other adult supervision becuase you allege that your ex is using drugs again. In my opinion no person using illegal drugs should be in the care of a child. Additionally, isn't it negligent--to put a child in the care of an adult who you think is using drugs? I mean, could YOU not be faulted by others in the future, (attorneys, judges) for letting your child continue to be in the care of your ex when you allege your ex was using drugs?

I am sorry you are feeling self-doubt about your ability to homeschool your child due to your ex-husband stating his own doubts. All I can say is why would the opinion of an alleged illegal drug-user be important anyway? To me anyway, the issue of your self-confidence in homeschooling is SECONDARY to the health and safety and emotional well-being of your son regarding his father and the alleged drug use you mention.

I hope and pray that you do not allow your son in the presence of your ex when he is using drugs which is what you alleged. I hope you put your resources energy and time toward getting legal counsel. If money is an issue, there may be an agency in your area that gives free legal help to those in need who are facing issues with the health and welfare of children. Please, please get legal counsel about this custody issue.

 

Date Posted: 10/10/2007 6:43 PM ET
Member Since: 1/12/2007
Posts: 158
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Unfortunately when parents are no longer wed, one can play the homeschooling objection card against the other.  You can either try to work it out or throw yourself on the mercy of the court- neither is a a pleasant option.  So I don't know that there is any really good advice.  My instinct would be to make things formal and get a custody agreement. But once you involve the courts, they are involved and will be making the decision in the case of disagreement- so that is a big risk. 

Weigh your risk factors and determine which direction is going to offer the safest course to achieving your goals. :(

Date Posted: 10/11/2007 4:23 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2007
Posts: 729
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Christine, I never meant to allege that I let him me be in the presence of his father when he's using. I should have been more clear above when I said that he lets him spend the night once a week & takes him for a few hours another day, I meant that was before he started using again. I would never let him come around like that. Don't worry, he's not taking care of him. He does come over to see him when he's clean, but he doesn't even call when he is using. I do believe he's trying to do better, & has started trying to reach out more. I do value his opinion, whether he has used drugs is not the issue. He is my sons father & generally a good person & he is crazy about him. As to him wanting to question my decisions, he's just set in his ways, & I have to show him that things will work & then he will come around. Did I mention that he's 11 years older? I'm just more comfortable trying new things & using technology than he is. Maybe it's because I grew up with it & he didn't? I am feeling better about my decision to homeschool since I started reading Mary Pride's book. It has some great information. Thanks for being so concerned about my little guy, & please rest assured that my son is perfectly safe. I'm constantly being accused by people of being too protective where my kids are concerned & I am! I just tell them I must be doing something right since they're still alive & have never had even a broken bone, lol. Pretty good for a couple of hyper boys! I'm really going to try to be more careful in the future as to how I tell anything on here as it is so easy to create a misunderstanding. You forget that people don't know the pertinent details & wonder why they aren't getting it, lol. Anyway, thank you all for trying to help & sorry for any confusion. :)

Last Edited on: 10/11/07 4:28 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/11/2007 8:45 PM ET
Member Since: 6/10/2007
Posts: 10,401
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Is this an exhusband (as in, you are divorced) (are you in fact divorced? separated?) or an exboyfriend (as in, never married)?

Why wouldn't you want a custody order in place when you have an ex that does drugs?

That strikes me as remarkably irresponsible...Sorry to be harsh.

Date Posted: 10/12/2007 1:52 PM ET
Member Since: 10/5/2007
Posts: 23
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I think you need to see a lawyer. If your ex is using drugs again your son should not be alone with him. Not overnight, not unsupervised. I'm sure that that will make it harder on you, but you need to think of your son. Once you see a lawyer they will be able to tell you what course of action to follow, but I'm sure that you will be able to get a judge to rule that you make the decisions regarding your son's education.

Good Luck

Date Posted: 10/12/2007 8:43 PM ET
Member Since: 6/10/2007
Posts: 10,401
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Toni, didn't your cat used to lick the screen? Or am I thinking of someone else. I always loved that avatar.

Date Posted: 10/14/2007 9:52 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2007
Posts: 729
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We were never married & he has no interest in custody & doesn't even when he's clean either. He said that a child needs his mother & that he knows He could never handle raising him & working. He's happy to just see him. He's doing a lot better now thankfully. He's been going to meetings & talking to a few people about how he feels (which is hard for him), which from past experiences tells me that he's on the mend. He hasn't relapsed in years, but then recently had some really painful issues from a recent break up & depression. I'm not making excuses here, just telling what I know. He tells me he's been praying a lot & asking God to help him. Michelle, I just got ths avater recently. You must be thinking about someone else. Although my cats do love to type (walk across my keyboard), lol. :)

Last Edited on: 10/14/07 10:17 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/15/2007 8:30 AM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2007
Posts: 337
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We are involved in  a local homeschool group which has lots of field trips, homeschool sports leagues and kid's groups like scouts, Contenders and 4-H.  We also attend church so we have lots of postive social interaction and support for me while homeschooling. This year is much better with them involved in more activities.  This is what I suggest you do for you and your son. 

 

Date Posted: 10/15/2007 5:13 PM ET
Member Since: 6/29/2007
Posts: 526
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If your son's father is using substances, he is putting your son and you at risk. You may need to speak with your attorney about this situation. If he is using drugs while your son is in his care, this turns into a child protective services referral. He is free to do what he wants on his own time, but he must be sober while a child is in his care. That said, my first concern is him undermining your parental authority. You are the primary caregiver and should not be belittled in front of your child. Your child will lose respect for you if argue in front of him, or if your ex-husband says hurtful things behind your back.

I also have a son with learning disabilities and a deadbeat father on drugs. When my son was younger, he would make promises to see him or call and would not follow through. This is devastaing to a child. I finally realized how his father's behavior was affecting him, so I quit telling him when his father would call. I certainly wouldn't tell him his father was coming to see him. I'm really glad I made that decision, because, as usual, he didn't follow through. This really helped with my son's emotional stability.

If his father doesn't like the way you parent your child, tell him to take you to court. Don't you change a thing, I'm sure a judge will be on your side. He'll probably back down the minute you say you've spoken with your attorney, anyway.

My last piece of advice is to make sure your son receives regular therapy. He needs a neutral person he can talk with about his internal turmoil. He loves both of you and wants to please you both, but if his father is not behaving like a rational adult, he is most likely putting unrealistic demands on your son. No child should have to go through that.

Good luck. It is a never-ending uphill battle when we deal with our ex-es.

Rita.

Date Posted: 10/19/2007 10:01 AM ET
Member Since: 6/27/2007
Posts: 1,070
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I think that some of your responses are rather harsh, she was seeking advice not to get bashed!He is a great father and is not around his son when he is using at all, you can't make someone get help just like I can't make my alcoholic mother seek help, they have to get fed up and get to that place where they want the help.Puting a drug addict or an alcoholic in treatment when they don't want the help is futile, they will only get out to Drink/Use again!She is a great mom and protects her son to the fullest, so that being said, how about lending a good ear for her to vent not to be BASHED!
Date Posted: 10/19/2007 12:39 PM ET
Member Since: 6/10/2007
Posts: 10,401
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Why are my blinkies missing? :(

She did say that her son WAS NOT around the father when he was using. But she only said that after several replies.

Date Posted: 10/19/2007 4:20 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2007
Posts: 729
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Susan, Down girl! Lol. She is very protective! I honestly did mean to start anything or cause a misunderstanding. Things are better now. :)

Last Edited on: 10/19/07 4:21 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/19/2007 4:21 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2007
Posts: 729
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Michelle, I see your blinkies. Do they not show up for you?
Date Posted: 10/19/2007 11:54 PM ET
Member Since: 6/10/2007
Posts: 10,401
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They do now, Toni, thanks. I had to play around with it. Somehow extra spaces got added to my signature.