Things were going well

helpwiththisApril 29, 2009

Up until now I only had one crazy ex to deal with, my dh's ex. She has been laying low for a while and things have been peaceful. So now my ex is going crazy and I am at a loss.

One of the major factors that led to me leaving my ex was his mood swings. He would be on top of the world one minute and the next minute he would be depressed and screaming and a real jerk. He began drinking a lot (and doing drugs I believe) and it made things so much worse. After years of this I left. He stopped and has always been a great dad to our dd. A few years ago he was going through the same mood stuff and his family got him into a psychaitrist who diagnosed him with bipolar. They put him on meds and stuff.

Well he has seemed fine and I guess he is not. I got a call yesterday that he shot himself with a gun! His family thinks it was for attention because it was a flesh wound and not in a spot that your going to shoot if you really want to die (you would probably shoot yourself in the head them). So now he is in the hospital recovering from surgery and after that his family has gotton him committed for a few days to the hospitals psych ward where he will meet with psychaitrists and they will try to get his meds adjusted. His family is hoping he will be kept longer.

My fear is our dd now. She is only 12 and I do not want to tell her about this. But I am scared. I do not want her around him unsupervised now when he gets out. I am having such a hard time with this because I did not see it coming and it scares me for my dd's sake. And I know that when my dd misses a few visits with her dad she will begin asking questions. I will be the bad guy keeping her away. Help!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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serenity_now_2007

Tell her he's in the hospital undergoing some surgery (of a boring, non-dramatic nature) and will be out of commission for a while. She shouldn't know what happened (at her age anyway) but she should be prepped that it could be a while until she sees him and that his "health" (you don't have to specify "mental" just yet) is a factor keeping him away. This lays the groundwork for if it becomes clear that he is going to continue to be a risk to himself or others, then you can say something like "he hasn't been the same since his surgery". In the meantime, talk to mental health and legal professionals about what the risk factor actually is and if there's realistic hope for him to "get better" and STAY better. You might want to also get with his friends and family to discuss rehab, as well as discussing it with him personally. He may be more willing to go than you expect... this may have been a real "cry for help", or his "rock bottom" or whatever you want to call it.

Awful, awful situation, and normally I wouldn't advocate lying to a child nor keeping a child away from his/her parents, but this is a scary situation. So very sorry for everyone involved, it's heartbreaking.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 10:28AM
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mom2emall

This is really sad. It is scary too!

I would not lie totally, but I also would not tell the full truth to your child. Maybe something along the lines of what serenity said would work.

I wish your ex the best in dealing with this.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 11:37PM
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finedreams

so sorry. agree with others, tell DD he is ill and needs time to recover. i have no advice, what an awful situation. hope he gets better soon.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 12:54PM
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kkny

So sorry. Even if was just a cry for attention, it was a pretty loud cry. I agree with others, dad is ill, is getting medical attention.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 4:35PM
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helpwiththis

Well I told her today about her dad. She was crying and said some disturbing things. Seems my ex told her before he was bipolar and he needed meds to keep from killing himself and that he would die if he stopped taking his meds!!

So her first question when I told her about the hospital was if her dad killed himself!!!!

So I had a long talk with her about what bipolar is and how the medicine helps control his mood swings. And I tried to clear up her misconceptions. When I asked her if she wanted to call her aunt or uncle (my ex's silbings) so they could assure her he was ok she said no. And then she told me that if I was lying to her and her dad was hurt that she would never forgive me!!!

I don't know what paranoid bs he has been feeding her but now I am worried about her.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 7:30PM
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stargazzer

I have a niece and a grandson who are bi polar and they are dangerous, the niece admitted that she was. I would not let the child near the man.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 9:32PM
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nivea

I actually disagree with not telling her. If there is a chance she will still be around him unsupervised, then I think she needs to be prepped with what to look/watch out for.

Have you looked into supervised visitation? I would first try that. But if it is not granted and it was my child, I would want her to have all the information and tools at her disposal should something happen when she is with him. And I don't look at it as trashing Dad, I see it as more of a safety concern.

Look at it this way, you couldn't deal with him when you were an adult. Your daughter is still a child and does not have the coping mechanisms you had the chance to develop. YOU were able to leave him, SHE can't.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 9:32PM
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kkny

Nivea, it never occured to me that the child would be left alone with Dad until he gets this under control. I guess I am naive. I would see if you could get supervised visititation. I'ld also like to know if the gun was registered -- I would demand no guns in any house my D visits. And with what D already knows, I would get her counseling.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 9:41PM
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nivea

KKNY, I don't think you're naive, you only had the chance to read the first post. Helpwiththis posted again with additional info.

I think since Dad already said disturbing this to their daughter, it would be best to let daughter know what's going on. Because he might get better, he might start taking her on visitation alone and he might decline again. And who knows what he will do that time? But at least daughter will be aware that when Dad starts talking disturbing again that it is time to tell someone.

Daughter apparently saw all the warning signs but wasn't prepped to tell anyone. And next time is all that matters now. What happens if he decides daughter shouldn't live either? Know what I mean?

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 9:51PM
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