This person prefers to remain anonymous. She is afraid to reveal herself because she is afraid if she reveals her name and her child’s name there is a chance the people responsible will cause more harm in retaliation, and she does not want to take that risk. Therefore she will remain anonymous.
I was married the first time for 15 years. I have two daughters from a previous marriage, ages 12 and 17. We had a good life together, and no horrible complaints, we just grew apart. Once we split up, we both found new relationships, and we both remarried. We each had children in our second relationships.
A little over a year ago my husband’s mom remarried a man she had been dating for around three years. He seemed nice enough. My opinion was that he was a nice guy, and my husband seemed to like him. He was a charming man. My youngest daughter really liked him, and that was a huge surprise, because she has always been my shy kid. She took to him right away. He was the type of guy who went out of his way to do nice things for everyone around him, but my gut said something was off. When he asked me if my youngest could spend the night with her new step-grand-parents I said no. I was worried that they would think I was saying no because they were “steps” but the truth was that the knot in my gut wouldn’t let me say yes. Later that night I explained exactly why I felt I didn’t think she should not have spent the night with her ne step-grandpa. I was a little worried about how my husband would react, but he took it well. I was molested as a child, and my husband knew this about me. He understood why I felt that way and he agreed that it was strange how much he had pushed for her to spend the night.
Months went by. They planned to take the girls for a few days over the summer and the girls were excited. While the girls were at their house, I spoke to them daily, and things seemed to be going okay, they both sounded a little homesick, and sad. By the last day I could not wait to go pick up my daughters. I am not the type of parent who can’t wait to go out and party without her kids. I can’t wait to be with my kids and I hate it when they’re gone. The two-hour drive to pick them up felt like torture. Toward the end of the drive something felt wrong. I received a text from my oldest daughter that she needed to talk to me right away as soon as I got there. I knew immediately what had happened. Not exactly, but I knew that one of my daughters or both of my daughters would never be the same. I knew that I wanted to throw up.
When we arrived we found out that he had molested my oldest daughter, and he had been grooming my youngest. I had to get my oldest away from everyone to find out what had happened without alarming everyone else, without frightening my youngest daughter, and without losing my temper. I also had to call my ex and tell him and his wife the situation immediately. I pulled my daughter aside, she told me what happened and I reassured her that she was so very brave. I was able to tell my husband and form a quick family game-plan. I then reassured my daughter that she would be okay and we would soon get her out of that situation. We then called my ex, still in the driveway. He was so very calm and wonderful. He never once blamed my husband for the ugly crime that was committed. Many divorced families would have at one another’s throats after what happened to us, but what happened did not affect our family that way, because we did not allow it to–we took the power away from the act.
We sat across from the man who did this to my daughter to see if we could tell whether or not he did anything to our other daughter or not. At that point we were unsure, and we had not spoken to her about it yet. We wanted to speak to each girl separately to make sure the stories were as accurate as possible.
This man ended up being charged with his crime and he was convicted and he is doing some jail time for his crime. It turned out that this man had been charged with these allegations before. His wife, my husband’s mother blamed us for everything and disowned our entire family. I was mainly to blame since I am not the blood relative. It’s funny, all the talk about steps, and family has nothing to do with blood was what we heard before, and then after this happened. Once my daughter was molested and we stood up for her it wad suddenly “blood is thicker than water.” It’s funny how the words change to serve you when they suit you, isn’t it?
Trish Eklund is taking a nontraditional approach to parenting children after divorce and remarriage. Raising her two daughters of ten and fourteen with her husband, ex-husband, and his wife, they consult one another on all parenting decisions. Trish has been featured on www.playground-magazine.com, and www.bigblendedfamily.com. She is a regular writer on www.herviewfromhome.com, writer and co-editor for Her View From Omaha. Follow her on Twitter: @trishiewriter, Google +, and Pinterest.