BIG decision to make...

amber904February 9, 2009

Okay, it's a very complicated story but that's my life, right?! My husband and I have 5 kids living with us. 2 are my bios, 2 are my step kids and we have one together. The bio mom lives in another state. Last year we found out that the biomom's third son is actually my husband's son also. He and she tried to work things out about 4 months before I met him, so I know that that all happened BEFORE me. She had another boyfriend at that time and so they both thought that the baby was her boyfriends. She even named her son after her boyfriend. I guess when they broke up she went after him for child support and they had a paternity test done and it turned out not to be her boyfriends child. That's how they found out he was my husband's baby. He's 3 and a half now. Anyways, she had another boyfriend and another baby(8 months old) and about 5 days ago they broke up and she went on the run. She moved out of state to her father's house and now her boyfriend is sure he is going to fight for custody. She gave my husband custody of the two older kids 3 years ago by not showing up to court. As far as my husband's younger son, he is thinking about gaining custody of him also. The reasons he hasn't filed are

1. Her bf was taking good care of both and had raised him for the last 2 years

2. We have 5 kids already

3. He never bonded with him because he didn't know he was his.

Now, he is worried because she is without a home, job, and is about to have a warrant for her arrest for non-payment of child support(to my husband). We also just found out (from her x bf) that she has been working, but with a fake ss# as to get out of paying child support. I'm not sure but I think that means jail time also. My husband doesn't want his son to go through bouncing around from house to house. Biomom's x-bf told my husband that he thinks the baby deserves the life that we can give him. I'm just not sure I can handle it. 5 kids is a lot to handle. I know, what's one more, right! I think I could do it but I just wanted to know what your opinions are. I want to support my husband. I am a stay-at-home mom so it is my job already to take care of the kids when they are sick, make doctor and dental appts, do homework and cook for all of these kids. One more is really a big deal to me. And believe me, my husband is WONDERFUL at helping me with everything, but I do most of it. What do you think??????

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Wow....What a messed up situation. I think your concerns are valid. I also think that the x bf has a good point. Think of his side of it and think about how in the long run, what it would mean for this child to have a lifetime of memories and relationships with you, your husband and his other siblings. I know that there is another child by his biomom but you can't do anything about that.

Five would be a lot of kids for me to handle all at once. I don't think I could say no though if I were in your shoes. If it were your child and you wanted to raise him in your home think how much it would mean to you if your DH was willing.

I would really strive to have DH do more if his schedule allowed. Being a stay at home mom for 5 is A LOT of work and your day never ends. If DH would help out more it would certainly ease the work load. I know that you said that he is wonderful...perhaps he could be more wonderful. The child is his......I guess this is one scenario that is meant by "For better and for worse."

I know it would be pressing you to the limit at times but in the long run how would you all feel about it? I wish you the best. You have your hands full.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 9:56AM
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Yes, this is a difficult situation. How old are the other kids?

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 10:02AM
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I always picture how it will be in the future, with all of the kids we have together being best friends, helping each other out, and just being really good people. I would love it if the other baby could be included in that. I know with his mom, he will not have the best life. She is not capable of giving him a stable life. If I were in my husband's shoes I would want him to support me. I know that if it comes down to it, it will be possible for us to handle having him here. He is a part of my husband and I would feel terrible for the rest of my life if he grew up to resent his father because we chose not to accept him into our family. It's just such a different situation than before. When I met my husband, the older 2 kids had been with him and they were 4 and 1. They were already bonded to my husband. This baby has only seen us 1 time in his life and I am worried about the transition. He doesn't know us. We don't know him. I do care about him and I think that if he was with us all of those issues would disappear after time goes by. My husband is still torn but he comes from a family of 12 kids, he being the youngest. He is used to having a big family. So, I think he is leaning toward having him with really is his decision in the end.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 10:12AM
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The kids are 12,8,7,5,and 2. The one out-of-state is 3.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 10:15AM
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When I first read the original post, my thought was 'how can your husband expect you to take on another child when you have five already!' But, then I thought 'It's HIS child! How can he not want his child with him if the child is in a detrimental situation?' It really isn't a decision for anyone at all, in my opinion. The child is his. If the child needs him and/or a place to go, I don't see a decision at all. If social services showed up at your door with this child, what would you say? Based on what you've said, that could very well happen in the future and the older the child is, the harder it will be. Is there a reason he's only seen the child once in 3 years. I understand he didn't know right away it was his child, but as soon as he found out, regular contact should have been arranged. Does the mother see her older children that live with you?

I agree it will be hard on you with another child. If he does come to live with you, at 3 or 4, he will still be able to bond with you. It just takes some time, especially if he has emotional problems. Coming from the situation you describe, he just may. My son met his bio father for the first time when he was 4 and they were able to have a relationship. If he does live with you, consider getting a counselor involved.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 10:38AM
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It is a tough situation, but I couldnt imagine leaving my child in a difficult family situation. Perhaps you could talk with DH as to maybe one or two of the older kids going to after school programs etc? How tight are you for $$, could you and dh afford any help one or two days a week?

You have my sympathy, this is a difficult situation. I also can not imagine how the older kids would feel if they find out that dad left one of his kids in a h@@l hole.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 10:39AM
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"Is there a reason he's only seen the child once in 3 years. I understand he didn't know right away it was his child, but as soon as he found out, regular contact should have been arranged."
The reason we have only seen him once in 3 years is because for 2 years we didn't know he was my husband's son. Also, they live 1,500 miles away from us. With 5 kids and a tight budget(not to mention NO help from biomom) it is too expensive to go and visit him. My DH does feel badly about not being able to see him but he feels like there is nothing he can do. He has to work overtime 6 days a week for us to be able to pay our regular bills.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 10:53AM
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Wow. What a messy situation.

I tend to agree with Ima, though. It seems to me that there is really no other option here--this is DH's child and he's not living in a safe or stable environment. I think he has to come live with you guys.

At 3 years old, he is still young enough that he can form a good bond with you and DH and grow up feeling secure in your family. My guess is at SOME point, whether it's now or in 3 years, he will wind up living with you, anyway. Better to do it now before any more emotional damage is done to him, and while he's still young.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 11:32AM
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Can you get any help from relatives -- dh's mom or anyone?

Any programs for younger children you can go on waitlist for?

I would be the last to advocate using 12YO for unpaid babysitter, but he/she will soon be old enough for crises short time needs, and being at home with 8 and 7 while you take younger to hospital.

Lovehadly, that is excellent advice, to do it now.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 11:50AM
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To me it sounds like you have more than enough room in your heart for this poor little child, so I think you are headed in the right direction. I think what you are afraid of is the actually mechanics of HOW you and your family would be able to do it.

To be sure, bringing a 3 year old into a brand new family will be terribly frightening to him and difficult for you, in the short term. But in the long term you are giving him a chance to live in a stable, loving home - something it doesn't sound like he will ever get without you.

You will have to mentally prepare yourself for a difficult time ahead as he adjust, but for goodness sakes he is still a baby and what he wants more than anything else is someone who makes him feel safe and secure and love. His father and stepmother can give him that.

If you don't take this risk...I do believe that you and your husband especially will regret it every single day of your lives. This is his child after all. Get every bit of support and counseling that you can from friends, family, church, social services, schools... don't do it on your own, but really...bring that poor little baby into your home.

Sorry that sounds a little preach, but I think you are already there're just scared too and rightly so. But you can do this.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 11:51AM
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Meant doctors, hope no one has to go hospital

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 11:54AM
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One question, has a paternity test proven your DH is the father? I only ask because the mom sure sounds like she has issues. Without doubt this little boy needs love and caring and sounds like your home has plenty.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 2:12PM
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Yes, after she found out the other man wasn't his father she had my DH tested and it came back 99.999.... SURPRISE!!!

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 2:36PM
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I agree with Ima that it seems like your home really has no other choice but to take in this boy. And I definitely agree with KKNY that the older kids may resent you and DH by NOT taking in their brother/stepbrother and leaving him in a bad situation. You all have to be an example to your kids and this is a perfect situation to show them what love really is.

I also think that you should do it now and not waste any more time. The sooner the better. Kids adjust to change so much easier the younger they are. And in a couple of years, he won't even remember anything about a life before living with you.

I really think that you will be blessed beyond your wildest dreams for your graciousness! You could be angry and mean, but you're not. You're anxious, but willing to make the sacrifices for the ones you love. That is so very admirable!

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 5:11PM
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Wow...messy situation but i think the BF is right, he would be better off with you guys.
And i personally couldn't say no to this child knowing that my husband is his father and that he needs a stable home.
You know, i know 5 is overwelming...but one more will really not brandish more stress than the stress level you are at. And the money will stretch with hand me downs because of his age. He's also young enough for him to imprint on so its the perfect age to take him on into yoru family...if he was any older i would have been more worried.
I think biomom will do jail time and owe money...go after her for the cash if you can because she is such a liar to do that ot the system and to not pay for the other 2 she has....
Either way bm is sad case and most likely a lost cause for her kids at this point in time. Focus on the wellbeing of that 3 year old and get him prompto into your house.
Is the BF going to bring him soon?

    Bookmark   February 10, 2009 at 8:29AM
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Well, the boyfriend doesn't have him right now, the mom does. But the boyfriend is putting in a request with the sheriff's office that she is not allowed to leave the state with their child. She is now in the neighboring state with her dad and doesn't know anyone in the bf's state. She will either have to find a place to live there or give her bf their baby. If she is forced to move back to their state, she will be on her own and that is where we are worried. Right now, she is at her father's house and we know nothing will happen to him there (short term). About my 12-year-old being an emergency babysitter- she has Cerebral Palsy and wouldn't be able to babysit. That is another concern, more time taken from her. But I balance it well with 4 other ones, what's one more!

    Bookmark   February 10, 2009 at 9:50AM
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Amber, my prayers are withyou. Yes this is a horrible situation.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2009 at 10:24AM
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God bless you, Amber. I have 5 myself. (15, 14, 12, 11 and 9). A 3 year old is a BIG responsibility. Not that an older child is NOT but at 3, they obviously need a lot more attention and overview than a 13 year old would, who could perhaps make their own sandwich for lunch, for example.

I have to agree though...what's one more? It would be a huge adjustment at first but I'm sure you would have no regrets in the long run. The child does deserve a stable life...but just to be sure, is BM unstable?

I realize that she is virtually homeless at the moment and is living with Dad but that is really not an immediate reason to assume custody. Is she neglectful? On drugs, maybe? Not a good mother? Is she abusive? I'm not trying to stand up for her, but I'm just trying to understand why there is a sudden interest in taking custody of the child. If she is a good parent to the child but is going through a difficult time at the moment with coming to the end of a relationship, that isn't really an immediate cause for trying to take custody, I think.

Knowing me, I've probably overlooked an explanation above somewhere...if I have and the woman is NOT a good parent, I would be 100% supportive of my DH going for custody of the child...but remember that we can't always go by the ex-boyfriend's thoughts right away. I mean, they DO have a dog in the fight and will usually only tell one side of the story. Perhaps a welfare check to her Dad's house is in order?

    Bookmark   February 10, 2009 at 11:51AM
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ah amber, you are in a tight older daughter with that condition does require time and then to add the 3 year old who also wants attention and bonding...will add. God give you strength on this one.
Is there any way you can have addition help from family members or social work to help you out once in a while.?

    Bookmark   February 10, 2009 at 12:22PM
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I don't know about additional help. My family lives all around me in my town but his family lives in Ecuador. So, other than my family and friends, I don't know about more help. And to answer momof5angels question, she is not abusive and I don't think would hurt her children physically. I believe she is neglectful and very dependent on help from men. There was an incident before we got custody of the other two children where her boyfriend hurt my stepdaughter and BM didn't tell anyone until we saw the evidence 4 days later. Then she tried to have my stepson cover it up by lying to the police and telling them that he did it. He was 5 a that time. She has also called my children names like retarded and white trash in front of all the children. She used them as pawns to hold over my husband's head when she did have custody. Her recent boyfriend calmed her down and he seemed very responsible and caring towards the kids, including the 3-year-old. So that is why we weren't worried until now. Now he is out of the picture and she has already started doing the things to her bf that she used to do to my husband. She is threatening to not let him see his baby any more and holding him as a pawn. Her BF seems to be telling us the truth and he is worried for the child's safety. He is the one who has been raising him for the last 2 years and so we believe him when he says he thinks the baby will do better with us.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2009 at 3:10PM
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