Daughter believed to be molested, no proof...helpPosted on 06/21/12, 05:50 pm
I spoke to 3 therapists and each one of them said, based on Daughter's sexual behavior, "She's too young to do that. Someone has either shown her something or done something to her." All 3 therapists advised me to keep her away from her dad until she got through therapy and we figured it out.
Daughter would never talk with any therapist. She displayed anger and avoidance and a high level of separation anxiety from me. She never talked.
Her dad refused to sign birth certificate. He kept Daughter while I was working. He never asked to take her for more visitaiton. Ever. Since I alleged molestation, and there is no proof, he is now trying to get custody of her.
There are 100 pages of history with all that has occurred so I'm trying to keep this brief.
I guess, I'm curious if any of you have experienced this? You know in your heart that your child was molested but have no proof. Did you face a custody battle afterwards? Can you tell me about it?
I've been told that most young children never tell that they were abused, even when directly asked. Most don't tell until they're adults.
All of my daughters odd behavior and abnormal sexualized behavior has stopped since I stopped overnight visits at her dads house.
Her odd behavior:
She had her first UTI in March 2011 after spending 4 days with him. She developed a nervous tic of clearing her throat excessively in August 2011. She developed a clothing adversion in fall 2011--she refused to wear underwear, jeans, sweatpants. She tugged at the crotch and said it was too tight or felt weird on her private part. She developed a "phobia" of being wet and sticky in her crotch area. I have to use the hair dryer and dry her off and/or use powder to take the sticky away.
She would often come home from his house and tell me her vagina hurt. I thought it was from not being bathed and didn't think too much of it. Her vagina was noticibly sore/red. In December 2011, she started digitally penetrating herself in the bathtub (thrusting fingers in/out). I hadn't pieced everything together until I learned that her penetration was abnormal. I thought her bathtime play WAS normal but 3 therapists told me that it was very rare for a child her age to be doing that.
She told me her brother's pulled her pants down one time. Her dad called her a liar. Daughter told me a variety of other things as well...and each time, her dad said she was a liar.
So, do any of you have experience with a child you believe was molested but have no proof? Did the perpetrator try to get custody of child? What happened?
Reply #1 06/21/12 6:08pm
I am no therapist, just a surivivor of child sexual abuse and the mom to a survivor of sexual abuse. I think your daughter has been sexually abused by her father. And I would question her brothers as well.
You have a lot of red flags. Keep her away from her father. Do her brothers live with her? Don't leave her alone with anyone.
My daughter didn't disclose until she was almost 18. Her older brother raped and molested her when she was 4 and he was 12. I had no idea and don't remember any red flags. She only had half a memory but when she told me I believed her. Young children usually don't have the verbal skills to tell us what is wrong, so we have to rely on other clues.
I am so glad that she has you for a mother to keep her safe. You are a hero! It is crazy to me that what you have is not considered proof. When will society start protecting our children?! I am sure you will get some other more helpful responses here. Keep coming back here for support. There are wonderful parents who post here. Take care, Laura
Reply #2 06/22/12 8:39am
I agree with Warriormama. I think there has been some sexual abuse as well. Those are all red flags and should be taken very seriously. It is possible if her brother lives with her dad, her brother may have been sexually abused as well and that may be the reason for his behavior as well. I would keep her away from them and hope and pray that she will feel comfortable enough to tell you. My daughter did not want to tell me at first because she thought she was going to get in trouble. Her father abused her. One day she started crying that she didn't want to go over there and it wasn't until I promised her that she would not get in trouble and I would not tell her dad whatever she told me, that she finally told me what had happened. So maybe take her to get some icecream or something that she really likes to get her in a really good mood and then see if you can bring it up again? She needs to be protected and you are doing a great job by looking into all of this. Keep us updated and come here anytime to ask questions. We have all been there,
Reply #3 06/22/12 10:12am
Hi Trapped, I'm so sorry you have the need to seek out a group like this, but I'm glad you found us. My heart breaks for your daughter. I felt nauseous as I read through your description of odd behavior and the timeline. I also feel she's been abused, but as you say without proof or at least a disclosure, it's hard to say for sure. I don't have your particular situation, but I've been on this board and 2 others almost daily for over 2 1/2 yrs, and I can tell you that legally keeping your daughter from her father is very tricky, you have to be smarter than the legal system and smarter than her father and his lawyer. You may want to look into getting an attorney with experience in child sexual abuse. Frequently the advice I've seen is to document everything in a spiral notebook where pages can't be added or removed--include date and time of anything your daughter says or does or that you might see (take photos if possible) that may be evidence, write about any conversations with her father, any phone call content with anyone in children's services or the legal system, etc. Also, be very careful what you say to your daughter. You don't want someone discounting what she says or what you say she says because they believe you put the idea in her head or were coaching her. Obviously you wouldn't, but if you look ahead and think about in a meeting or in a court when there's you and her father saying 2 different things, it's easy for an investigator or a judge not to believe you or your daughter--they often will lean toward believing the offender because they don't want to chance wrongfully accusing someone, they may think you are using it as a tactic to get custody, and they don't always think what a 5 or 6 year old says is credible (for whatever reason they don't get that a child can't make this stuff up, they learn it from somewhere).
I'm wondering if your daughter has been interviewed by someone at a child advocacy center. That is a place where the counselors are trained in establishing a rapport and in conducting play therapy that helps the child victim feel trustful enough to open up and say something. It'll take the right person at the right time for her to disclose, and you want that not to be you but to be a counselor or someone in the legal system so she is believed right away and you can keep her away from her offender.
In my sons' case, they were much older, and my one son (the primary victim) reported when he was 19 the abuse that started when he was 15 and went on for almost a year, his abuser was a teacher/friend of the family. My son signed consent for a taped phone conversation and called the offender who he hadn't spoken to for almost 2 yrs from a police vehicle with 2 detectives present. He got his abuser to admit everything, so there was irrefutable evidence. It's so hard to get that kind of evidence when you have young kids and custody battles, etc. That's why it's so important to research everything and be smart. What are the laws in your state, what is the statute of limitations, what resources do you have available to you (for instance, would your daughter benefit from having a guardian ad litem), etc. Be well informed so you know what is needed and what to expect. I hope this info is helpful for you.
I'm so sorry you are going through this, but you are doing a great job!--you are aware of things that aren't right, you're reaching out for support, you are striving to protect your daughter. You're doing the right things, I hope and pray things work out well for you and your daughter. Come here as often as you need for support or just to vent. I'm keeping you in my thoughts and prayers (((hugs)))
Reply #4 06/22/12 11:14am
Thank you all so much. My daughter was interviewed at CAC. She didn't disclose anything. She went to therapy after. She was angry and reluctant to talk about anything. The therapist believed, based on the behavior she witnessed, that Daughter was withholding something and someone may have told her not to like the therapist.
Her dad has 2 teenage sons ages 16 and 18. They have male friends over frequently for sleep overs. I always trusted her dad and never in a millon years thought he would ever hurt her. But the more I think about it, I'm really wondering if it wasn't him. Looking back through the years of different things--plus the fact that he's calling Daughter a liar. He and I both saw Daughter thrusting fingers inside herself. But now, he denies seeing anything. It's like he's trying to cover something up.
He psychologically abused me for 10 years. I have no proof. Someone's molested my daughter. I have no proof. He's good at manipulating and lying. I just need someone to step into this disaster and help me fight him. He told me "DCFS closed the case and said it was unfounded but you're still not letting me have our Daughter. You're using her as a pawn and trying to ruin my life. Soon the table will be turned aorund and you'll know how it feels." It's all so hard.
I'm going to try to find an woman's activist and help me prove he's abused me for so many years. Things like this are so hard to prove though. I just want to wake up from this nightmare, yk?
Reply #5 06/22/12 12:19pm
Ugh, Trapped, I'm so sorry you are going through all this. I honestly don't know how some of the people here can get through all they do; they are the strongest people I know. We were forunate in that my son reported in early Jan 2011, and by late Aug 2011, the hearings, grand jury, plea deal and sentencing was over, mostly because the offender was a teacher, so the prosecutor and staff worked hard to get him away from minors.
It may be that your daughter's dad isn't the offender and he's protecting one or both of his sons, or someone else. But maybe you can gradually explain to your daughter about telling the truth, and that if anyone told her not to like someone or say anything, or even if they threatened harm or bad things if she told, that it's just not true, and that there are people who are in certain jobs because they really care about helping children. How unfair this all is for her, I pray that one day soon she is on a path of healing.
I think finding a women's activist or group is a good idea. I volunteer once a week at one in my county, and we actually have a book of resource #s for out of state too. If you feel comfortable telling me the county where you live, I can look it up for you when I go in on Tues. If you friend me I can do it in a private message if that's more comfortable. Don't feel pressured though, no problem if you aren't comfortable with it. Our organization has a big legal advocacy service too, so if you find a person or group near you, they may really be able to help you with some of all you have to deal with. Big (((hugs))) to you and your daughter.
Reply #6 06/30/12 12:51am
Trapped, my kids did disclose, and yet the courts did nothing because he denies it all and says I am crazy, I am now in court ordered therapy. The judge said if I mention child abuse in her court room again, she will give him full custody. You know the truth, and your instincts are absolutely correct, I knew on instincts for four years but did not come forward to cops until I personally eye-witnessed it. Even then, he got off. I know it's hard not to worry but you are facing an uphill battle. You need to leave him and make him out to be an unfit father that he is and take custody of them so he can keep his perry hands to himself. Good luck, wishing you lots of luck and strength
Reply #7 06/30/12 2:10am
Dear Trapped I think your daughter has been abused too, as children of your daughters age don't have the sexual maturity to know or demonstrate this unless been involved on some level or shown by another party, my daughter was 7 years old when she started displaying inappropriate sexual behaviour. I later found out that she had been abused by my best friends husband. I took him to court and he only got 12months home detention, I was devastated and demented as I didn't get closure in this matter. Its 3 years now since her abuse and we are still in therapy, My experience was that the courts take preference to the perpetrators civil rights over the childs. it is an emotionally exhausting battle that can destroy you if you let it. My heart and prayers go out to you and all the mum's.
Reply #8 07/06/12 5:38pm
CHILDREN DO NOT LIE ABOUT THIS!!!!! they are born with innocent minds and are only contaminated by what they see or experience. So go with your gut!!!
Reply #9 07/12/12 5:31pm
Im sorry that this happened to your daughter to just keep track of everything buy a notebook just write down dates times and incidents i know its hard to just sit and wait for her to talk to you but from my expierience with Department of Children and Families if she doesn't disclose anythig they wont do anything goodluck and godbless you my prayers are with you and her.
This group is for parents whose children have been sexually abused. We welcome both Mothers and Fathers. Here, we can offer support to one another. We can vent, cry and lift each other up. No condemning or criticizing allowed. We are here for support. We LOVE (((HUGS))) !