Abby 3-20

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“Derecho”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

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#1
Mar 20, 2013
 
DEAR ABBY: Is there such a thing as non-physical sexual abuse? When I was young, my father would fondle my mother when I came to sleep with them when I had a nightmare.(She would rebuff his advances.) He would also watch porn in front of me.

As I matured, he made comments about my figure. He would barge into my room without knocking and insist he didn't have to knock. He'd tell dirty jokes or talk about sexually inappropriate things.(The day after my wedding he asked my husband how our wedding night had been.) But with all of this, he never touched me or assaulted me.

His actions affected my self-esteem and relationships because as I grew up I thought the only thing I had to offer was being sexy. Thankfully, therapy and my husband helped me to see myself as a fully dynamic person.

I recently began seeing a new counselor who thinks my father was just a dirty old man -- nothing more. Was I abused? Any information you have would be appreciated.-- WONDERING IN WISCONSIN

DEAR WONDERING: When a parent attempts to initiate sex or watch pornography in front of a child, it is sexualizing behavior and it could also be considered "grooming" behavior. Your father's actions were so far out of the normal boundaries that they were off the charts. And yes, it was a form of abuse. My advice is to change counselors.

DEAR ABBY: My daughter is mentally ill, homeless and on meth. A year ago, when she wasn't so bad, she asked if I would take her 3-year-old daughter, "Lucy," so she could get herself together. Unfortunately, she went the other direction.

It was fine when I thought that the arrangement was temporary, but when I realized I would be raising Lucy as a single parent at 49, things got hard.

My so-called friends have abandoned me, and so has my much younger boyfriend. But what is actually killing this is that I get no respite. I am an extreme introvert. Constant contact drains me. When I don't have my "recharge" time, I tune Lucy out, and the next thing I know she has cut up the curtains or hidden my shoes. I'm afraid I'm just going to lose it. Work doesn't count; there are people there, too. Bad thoughts are going through my head because I feel such resentment.

I know if I had time for my own mental health, I could be a good surrogate mother to Lucy, but if I can't, I'm starting to think I may have to give her up, and that breaks my heart. I want to scream, to throw things, to just leave the house and walk until I drop. Please help me.-- END OF MY ROPE

DEAR END: How much time do you need to recharge? Would it be an hour or hour and a half at the end of each workday? Would an afternoon during the weekends suffice? Have you discussed this with Lucy's grandfather or her paternal grandparents? They might be willing to get involved and lighten your load. Would a neighbor watch your grandchild on a regular basis if you compensated her or him? How about the person who already takes care of Lucy while you're at work?

Please explore these options if you haven't already. Screaming, throwing things and leaving the little girl alone are not viable scenarios. However, if you feel that you might harm her, it would be better if you placed her for adoption or in foster care.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

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#2
Mar 20, 2013
 

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LW1: He never did anything to you nor attempted too? I go with dirty old man with extremely poor judgement. The fact that his behavior delivered the message that you had nothing to offer but being sexy is not abuse. Its just poor parenting. In his mind, that probably IS all he thinks women have to offer.

LW2: "My so-called friends have abandoned me"
In what way? You think they should take part in parenting with you and they're not? You're BF obviously did not sign up for this and moved on. Don't blame them for not sharing your misery.

Time to call child protective services.

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me!

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#3
Mar 20, 2013
 

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1 No, there is not such thing as non-physical sexual abuse. You are looking to be a victim. The guy is cuckoo, but not a child molester.

Yanno, years ago (and to this day) kids are raised in whorehouses. Yup, they grow up knowing momma has sex with men for money, and these same kids are not writing amby to find out if they were abused because of their environment. GTFU.

2 Much younger boyfriend....Yeah that explains alot. I feel for Lucy, and why the hell does she have access to scissors?

Since: Jan 10

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#4
Mar 20, 2013
 

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L1: I vote for *emotional* abuse. Porn in front of kids? That's abuse. Your dad is messed up. Your mom's no saint for keeping him around either.

L2: I doubt your friends abandoned you. It's that your life changed in a way that their activities no longer fit what you were able to do. And your "much younger" boyfriend reference tells me that you have issues (Otherwise, you just would have said "boyfriend"). So hey, good job raising a loser kid.

Give the granddaughter up for adoption before she's ruined for life.

Since: Jan 10

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#5
Mar 20, 2013
 

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Mister Tonka wrote:
Time to call child protective services.
I agree.

Since: Jan 10

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#6
Mar 20, 2013
 

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Plus, LW2 is entitled to foster care benefits, including a monthly stipend. Then maybe she could afford to hire a babysitter now and then.

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

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#7
Mar 20, 2013
 

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I agree with Race. LW is looking to be a victim. Dad was a Dirty Old Man. Stay away from him, by all means but drop the abuse label.

LW2 does not mention her husband or daughter's father or other family. My ( sad) impression is that apples don't fall far from the tree and teh best thing for Lucy would be for someone else to raise her.

Game point match to Race on why a 3 year old has access to scissors.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

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#8
Mar 20, 2013
 

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RedheadwGlasses wrote:
L2: I doubt your friends abandoned you. It's that your life changed in a way that their activities no longer fit what you were able to do.
You said it better than me. This in a nutshell.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

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#9
Mar 20, 2013
 

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PEllen wrote:
Game point match to Race on why a 3 year old has access to scissors.
LW's "missing" friends are likely not around much anymore because the Dynamic of hanging out with her has changed since she has a kid to care for and that does not fit in with their plans. Likewise, I would bet SHE is struggling with change as well and instead of baby proofing the place, she's playing the victim role.

Since: Jan 10

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#10
Mar 20, 2013
 

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Plus, she's a big introvert. That can impact social interactions as well. So throw in a needy toddler and you have someone who isn't going to be fun at parties.

“Licensed to Ill”

Since: Aug 08

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#11
Mar 20, 2013
 

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LW1: I wouldn’t call it abuse. I would call it highly inappropriate.

LW2: Poor Lucy. Her mom and grandma suck donkey balls. Neither of you are fit to raise her.

“Derecho”

Since: May 09

United States

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#12
Mar 20, 2013
 

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1- Way to man-bash in order to vilify the LW's determined role as a victim. She's finally gaining some self-esteem and making progress and Abby just knocks her back several steps by telling her "Yes, you were abused, you should dump your therapist and find another so you can continue to wallow in self-pity THEN you can start all over in putting this behind you."

Shameful, Abby.

2- Maybe your friends and "much younger" boyfriend abandoned you because you're turning into crazy lady.

Toj

“Equality”

Since: Jul 12

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#13
Mar 20, 2013
 

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L1: I don't think in this situation that believing you were or were not abused has anything to do with self-esteem. That has to do with the facts. What you do with the information is what can affect self esteem. The father was an idiot and the mother probably disengaged from the family (where is she mentioned) and also had an affect on her. She needs to find another therapist to get her to focus on herself and how she can be better.

L2: After reading that letter all I can think of is believing I know why most likely the daughter is so messed up. The mother is no prize.

“FD&S is no way to be.”

Since: Feb 13

Huntingdon, TN

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#14
Mar 20, 2013
 

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1. Who cares what it is called? It was/is wildly inappropriate and obviously had a significant negative impact. Go find a better counselor.

2. "Screaming, throwing things and leaving the little girl alone are not viable scenarios." Hey, good call Abby, you dum dum.

Get the girl out of there. Her mom sucks, you're obviously not capable. One thing not mentioned was Lucy's father. Obviously he is not going to step in and care for the girl, but maybe an option is to try for child support that you can use for a sitter from time to time. But in the end probably the best thing is for you to give Lucy a new start.

“Fort Kickass”

Since: Sep 09

Bloomington, IL

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#15
Mar 20, 2013
 

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L2: I'm going to advocate for the LW here. Mostly because I'm bored.

Yeah, maybe she was a terrible mom and that's why ol' girl does meth. But SHE didn't have Lucy, her daughter did. Her daughter is the one that failed. The LW is just being honest and trying to deal with her feelings.

IDK, I completely understand being resentful of raising a child because of someone else's negligence. I can't imagine what it would have been like if my SIL was 3 instead of 16 when she ended up with us. At least I could go out or retreat to our room. And I still felt close to insanity.

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me!

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#16
Mar 20, 2013
 

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And she does say that she wants to do right by the kid, but even if she does get the time to "recharge" I still wonder how good her parenting skills really are.
Matilda77 wrote:
L2: I'm going to advocate for the LW here. Mostly because I'm bored.
Yeah, maybe she was a terrible mom and that's why ol' girl does meth. But SHE didn't have Lucy, her daughter did. Her daughter is the one that failed. The LW is just being honest and trying to deal with her feelings.
IDK, I completely understand being resentful of raising a child because of someone else's negligence. I can't imagine what it would have been like if my SIL was 3 instead of 16 when she ended up with us. At least I could go out or retreat to our room. And I still felt close to insanity.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

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#17
Mar 20, 2013
 

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Matilda77 wrote:
L2: I'm going to advocate for the LW here. Mostly because I'm bored.
Yeah, maybe she was a terrible mom and that's why ol' girl does meth. But SHE didn't have Lucy, her daughter did. Her daughter is the one that failed. The LW is just being honest and trying to deal with her feelings.
IDK, I completely understand being resentful of raising a child because of someone else's negligence. I can't imagine what it would have been like if my SIL was 3 instead of 16 when she ended up with us. At least I could go out or retreat to our room. And I still felt close to insanity.
I can agree with this. My main issue is how she's finding fault with everyone else for "abandoning" her, as if they have some obligation to co-parent with her.

Speaking of the joys of parenting. Yesterday my wife saddled me with the task of watching the kids in front while the former neighbor brought his kids over to ride bikes in the culdesac. First I had to put the training wheels back on my older son's old bike to become the younger son's bike. No easy task when you see what a big mess my garage is. Crap every where. Junk that needs to go. Garage sale didn't work.
Lots of toys that need to go.

So the kids came over. And the one kid is "special". Functioning, but you can tell. He kept going in the garage and finding more toys to pull out. And I had to keep reigning him back. Any time I was not on him, he was poking around in there looking for more crap. Eventually the 3 kids from down the block came out. By the time I called it a night, there were 7 kids and (from my garage) 2 bikes, 3 scooters, 1 tricycle, a soccer ball, a football, a baseball, a baseball bat, and assorted little kid toys pulled out to the sidewalk or street. Had I not been on that kid's ass, he would have pulled more junk out. Told wife I'm tired of this crap piling up. No one's gonna buy it. We need to take it all to goodwill. I want my car back in the garage

“Fort Kickass”

Since: Sep 09

Bloomington, IL

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#18
Mar 20, 2013
 

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Mister Tonka wrote:
<quoted text>I can agree with this. My main issue is how she's finding fault with everyone else for "abandoning" her, as if they have some obligation to co-parent with her.
And I can agree with this. The boyfriend taking a hike? Completely understandable. She needs to join a grandparents-raising-grandkids social group. Seems like it's fairly common, unfortunately.
Mister Tonka wrote:
<quoted text>
Speaking of the joys of parenting. Yesterday my wife saddled me with the task of watching the kids in front while the former neighbor brought his kids over to ride bikes in the culdesac. First I had to put the training wheels back on my older son's old bike to become the younger son's bike. No easy task when you see what a big mess my garage is. Crap every where. Junk that needs to go. Garage sale didn't work.
Lots of toys that need to go.
So the kids came over. And the one kid is "special". Functioning, but you can tell. He kept going in the garage and finding more toys to pull out. And I had to keep reigning him back. Any time I was not on him, he was poking around in there looking for more crap. Eventually the 3 kids from down the block came out. By the time I called it a night, there were 7 kids and (from my garage) 2 bikes, 3 scooters, 1 tricycle, a soccer ball, a football, a baseball, a baseball bat, and assorted little kid toys pulled out to the sidewalk or street. Had I not been on that kid's ass, he would have pulled more junk out. Told wife I'm tired of this crap piling up. No one's gonna buy it. We need to take it all to goodwill. I want my car back in the garage
Our garage is like that, too. First nice Saturday and we need to be out there organizing. Fortunately, our neighborhood freaking rocks when it comes to garage sales, so that's an option.

Toj

“Equality”

Since: Jul 12

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#19
Mar 20, 2013
 

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Matilda77 wrote:
L2: I'm going to advocate for the LW here. Mostly because I'm bored.
Yeah, maybe she was a terrible mom and that's why ol' girl does meth. But SHE didn't have Lucy, her daughter did. Her daughter is the one that failed. The LW is just being honest and trying to deal with her feelings.
IDK, I completely understand being resentful of raising a child because of someone else's negligence. I can't imagine what it would have been like if my SIL was 3 instead of 16 when she ended up with us. At least I could go out or retreat to our room. And I still felt close to insanity.
I get that, but then you call services and find a home for the child. A kid growing up in an environment where the caretaker/guardian is resentful will eventually make for ANOTHER screwed up adult.

Toj

“Equality”

Since: Jul 12

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#20
Mar 20, 2013
 
Mister Tonka wrote:
<quoted text>I can agree with this. My main issue is how she's finding fault with everyone else for "abandoning" her, as if they have some obligation to co-parent with her.
Speaking of the joys of parenting. Yesterday my wife saddled me with the task of watching the kids in front while the former neighbor brought his kids over to ride bikes in the culdesac. First I had to put the training wheels back on my older son's old bike to become the younger son's bike. No easy task when you see what a big mess my garage is. Crap every where. Junk that needs to go. Garage sale didn't work.
Lots of toys that need to go.
So the kids came over. And the one kid is "special". Functioning, but you can tell. He kept going in the garage and finding more toys to pull out. And I had to keep reigning him back. Any time I was not on him, he was poking around in there looking for more crap. Eventually the 3 kids from down the block came out. By the time I called it a night, there were 7 kids and (from my garage) 2 bikes, 3 scooters, 1 tricycle, a soccer ball, a football, a baseball, a baseball bat, and assorted little kid toys pulled out to the sidewalk or street. Had I not been on that kid's ass, he would have pulled more junk out. Told wife I'm tired of this crap piling up. No one's gonna buy it. We need to take it all to goodwill. I want my car back in the garage
Sounds like you have the fun house in the neighborhood.

Goodwill would probably be thrilled to take that stuff.

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