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I was really torn on whether to post this or not, but I think that I can post with some anonymity here...

 

What would you do if your child said something about a close family member that was inappropriate (something inappropriate shown/done to your child)? But immediately after said he was joking, and later during a private talk still insists he was joking.

 

My 6 yr old today was having a silly conversation with me. We were cuddling and I asked if he'd still cuddle with me when he was a teenager, "yes!" he said. I asked if he'd still cuddle with me when he was an adult "YES!" he said...and then added, "but not when you're really old because old people are gross. But not (grandma)!" I laughed and he added "but (grandpa) is gross". "Why?" I asked. And he answered, "because he showed me his pee-pee".

 

Immediate red flags went up and I seriously asked him if that was true. He started backtracking and said, "no! I was just joking". I asked why would he say something like that then and he said "because I thought it would be funny". I continued to talk to him about what was funny and what wasn't, and that if something like that did happen I'd want to know right away and he wouldn't be in trouble, that its my job to protect him no matter what, etc. etc.

He didn't seem worried at all, not scared or concerned. He kept saying he was joking. Later on when we talked again, I told him to tell me ANY time something like that happened, anything inappropriate at all no matter who it was. He assured me there was nothing to tell, and then he told on one of his brothers for showing him his "pee-pee". I have five boys, and you can imagine that penis talk is quite normal in this house. So "showing something their pee-pee" is pretty normal vocab for my 6 yr old.

 

Should I freak out? I talked to DH since the person in question is his step-father. He said no way. He said that his step-father isn't "like that" and there wouldn't be any reason for concern. He assured me he'd talk to our dS6 anyway though.

 

It just surprised me I guess. I'm always watching for any warning signs or questionable situations. It scares the heck out of me. Especially how common it seems to be, especially within a family. And we've had some issues with our older son, DS 8, that we've wondered if somehow he'd ever seen anything or had something done to him inappropriate...he just seems more "sexual" then our other boys, and we don't know if that's a personality thing or something else.

 

I don't know DH's step-father well enough to know for sure if he would or wouldn't. I do know that there was something said about him that is concerning, however I never worried about it until something like this came up. I dont' think I should discuss it on a public board though.

Dh and I have been married for 9+ years now but we don't have frequent contact with his mom and step-father because they live three hours way and we both are always busy. We see eachother a few times a year though and our sons take turns staying there a week during the summers.

 

I just would never want to accuse someone, especially a close family member, unless I was absolutely certain.

 

So what would you do? Just keep a close eye and continue to have these conversations with your children? Is there something I can say that would make him open up if something were going on and he was afraid to say for whatever reason?

 

Beyond this - my 6 yr old is very normal and happy in every way. He loves going to his grandparents' house and loves his grandparents. He doesn't have any weird issues or anything that would be a red flag or concern me.

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I was really torn on whether to post this or not, but I think that I can post with some anonymity here...

 

What would you do if your child said something about a close family member that was inappropriate (something inappropriate shown/done to your child)? But immediately after said he was joking, and later during a private talk still insists he was joking.

.

 

At six, my son came up with every possible excuse to say that word, or our version of it. I'd have my eyes open, but I wouldn't panic or confront. How often are they alone?

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I would be concerned because of what you said about the older child.

 

Honestly, it would be the end of unsupervised visits for me.

 

Ymmv.

 

Oh, and there really is no "perv profile." Perfectly normal looking, upstanding citizen, good parent types can be abusive this way, so saying it could never happen because the person in question isn't the "type" holds no comfort for me.

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I would cautiously ask about the "something that was said". If it was something that was along the same lines then my red flag meter would go higher. I would cancel the boy's week with Grandma and Grandpa or would arrange it so that you and your husband were there too.

 

Yes it does go along these lines. But apparently was a totally false accusation.

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This is what I think too...but then my other conscious jumps in and says, "wait! False accusations happen. And your son talks about 'pee-pees' often..."

 

If I remember correctly the false accusation involved a lie detector test which he passed and the charges were all dropped...but I'm not sure the whole details on the story.

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I think I would just have a private conversation with the older son, alone, being very careful not to lead him in any way. I think I'd talk to him about how important it is to keep our private parts private, etc. and ask if anyone at all has every done or said anything that would go against that. I would not suggest family, friends, etc. I'd just ask if a very generic "anyone" had ever done anything and see what comes out. And he might not tell you anything at first, either, but I'd wait a couple of weeks to see if he comes back with anything.

 

I'd just want to try to make sure, since you have some misgivings about two of your sons now....

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ETA: I shared too much. OP, if there is any doubt - protect your kids. I, personally, would stop all visits with kids alone and I would try to find a way to clue in other family with children who stay there alone.

Edited by Horton
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Do you think he may have accidently walked in on Grandpa in the bathroom? Or they went to a public bathroom at the same time and he might have accidently caught a glimpse? Was his last visit there recent?

 

That's what DH thought maybe, although I don't know that DS would use the words "show me his pee-pee" if it was an accidental glimpse since he's walked in on DH before?

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If I remember correctly the false accusation involved a lie detector test which he passed and the charges were all dropped...but I'm not sure the whole details on the story.

 

You know, I have four boys. I know that they are prone to make inappropriate references to their privates now and again. That said, in light of what I quoted above, there would be no more unsupervised visits for my children. I just couldn't be comfortable with that.

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I understand not wanting to falsely accuse without being "certain." At the same time, with a previous accusation (or discussion thereof), PLUS what your son said recently, I wouldn't want him alone with step-dad unless you were "certain" nothing was wrong. Which you really can't be, under the circumstances.

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You just never, ever know. My dad came out with something completely outrageous this past summer when he had been perfectly normal for the previous 30+ years of my life. Because of that, he will never see his granddaughters again. It was that serious.

 

This could be the first signs of dementia.

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So the general consensus is to stop unsupervised visits but not confront him.

What about the other grandchildren? DH has a brother with four daughters, they also take turns going over to the grandparents' house for a week during the summer, and sometimes more frequent then that.

Would you discuss your concerns with DH's brother and his wife? I think MIL would suddenly become very suspicious if none of her grandchildren would be allowed to come stay during the summer anymore. Its been the highlight of the kids and her summer previously.

 

I just feel so bad thinking this because part of me thinks its nothing and I'm making a big deal out of nothing, yet another part is really concerned.

 

I think I will ask my older son, but without naming names as suggested, some general questions. I also think I'll be very wary of, if not ban, unsupervised visits...

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IDK. Where there's smoke, you know? We don't have all the details regarding the previous accusation, and I understand that you do not want to share that information here. It seems that it must have been a serious situation if charges were considered and he submitted to a polygraph.

 

I really don't know much about it, other then that if I remember right it involved a little girl who was being babysat that accused him. However he adamantly said he didn't do such a thing and took a polygraph test, which he passed, and either the girl recanted her story or else the parents dropped it...I don't really know. I just didn't want to post about things that I can't say for certain happened, I don't remember much about what was told to me.

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II'm always watching for any warning signs or questionable situations. And we've had some issues with our older son, DS 8, that we've wondered if somehow he'd ever seen anything or had something done to him inappropriate...he just seems more "sexual" then our other boys,

I don't know DH's step-father well enough to know for sure if he would or wouldn't. I do know that there was something said about him that is concerning, however I never worried about it until something like this came up.

.

 

You now have enough to give PAUSE to allowing any of your son's to be in your husband's step-father's company without you. The fact you've wondered about your 8 yo's behavior, and now your 6 yo has said something suggests there *is* something there. Good chance your son backtracked becasue of your response, not because he was "joking".

 

do NOT allow ANY of your son's to ever be alone with him. that means YOU must always chaparone when they are together. (since your husband doesn't think it means anything, he won't be as observant)

Edited by gardenmom5
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Unsupervised visits would be ending immediately.

 

You just never, ever know. My dad came out with something completely outrageous this past summer when he had been perfectly normal for the previous 30+ years of my life. Because of that, he will never see his granddaughters again. It was that serious.

 

since this was an out-of-the-blue thing, could he be in the early stages of dementia? as the brain starts to deteriorate, inhibitions diminish and outrageous behavior can frequently occur.

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I am alarmed by what you have written. I don't want to get into anything on this board (you can pm me) but speaking from personal experience Do NOT EVER let your children be alone with him,

 

I would also have your Dh talk to your 6 year old and your 9 year old separately about grandpa and maybe even about what "showing pee pee" is ok--accidentally walking in on someone in the bathroom and what is not ok. I would advice you to have someone else talk to your child, but pastors and counselors are mandatory reporters so if they are at all concerned CPS will show up at your house to question the kids (in some instances without you).

 

It is much, much better to strain the relationship with MIL than to allow anything to happen to your children. If anything is disclosed in the dad talk, I would have your DH talk to his siblings, in order to protect your nieces and nephews.

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Another possibility, it may not have been an accidental viewing; but not really totally inappropriate. Does Grandpa just have a different standard of privacy than your family? He may have simply changed in front of ds without even thinking about being naked in front of a boy? Maybe used the john without closing the door, not really accidental just not caring? I know my dh will do those things with the boy in the room without it crossing his mind. I do the same with my girls. The only thing that actually would have me concerned would be the little girl's story.

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since this was an out-of-the-blue thing, could he be in the early stages of dementia? as the brain starts to deteriorate, inhibitions diminish and outrageous behavior can frequently occur.

 

:iagree:

 

Just wanted to add to this - my grandfather did some outrageous things when his dementia started. As it progressed he would come up with the craziest things and they were nothing like the grandfather I knew all my life.

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My gut feeling as I read the op was that your ds may have backtracked when he realized you were concerned about what he'd said. Others have said the same thing. I agree with my fellow Hivers here in that I would proceed with caution, but not confront. One of the reasons that this type of abuse is so rampant in our society is that there is a great deal of subtlety involved. People are capable of doing shocking things when they believe no one is looking.

 

Since you are in a dilemma about the summer visits, I wonder how it would be for you or dh go to grandma & grandpa's house WITH each of the children during the summer visits? This would not deprive grandma her longer visits, while keeping grandpa on his toes. Might not work of course...but it's a thought.

 

As to the other conversation:

 

You just never, ever know. My dad came out with something completely outrageous this past summer when he had been perfectly normal for the previous 30+ years of my life. Because of that, he will never see his granddaughters again. It was that serious.

 

I agree with the other posters on this one, in that it may be early stages of dementia. My dear father had a seedy affair -- which was TOTALLY out of character for him -- while in the early stages of dementia. He had never been unfaithful before. He loved my mother, his life-long partner, with all his heart, and the whole family was in complete shock. Thankfully Mom eventually recognized that Dad had a serious medical condition and was able to forgive him. She went on to take very good care of him when he needed her as the disease progressed.

 

Blessings,

Lucinda

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I would immediately cut off any independent visits. If something was said from the grandparents, I would tell them exactly why. I would say, I am not saying it is true that anything inappropriate happened, but you understand that in light of x, (the past accusations), y (older son showing inappropriate behaviours), and z (the current situation) you can't risk sending them alone anymore. I would end it with, "you understand as a parent, I am sure, and would have done exactly the same."

 

Seriously, if this was your son's friend's father, you would no longer send him unsupervised to stay with their family. Just because it is family doesn't mean you can ignore the red flags.

 

You will lose them as friends. They will think you are the evil wife who stole their son and grandsons and possibly the other grandsons and granddaughters away. So be it.

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Even at the age of 6, kids understand that what they say can cause problems in their families. It sounds to me (and this is just a possibility, of course) that your son was reminded of something Grandpa did and slipped up - and then realized what he said - and didn't want to cause conflict.

 

My gut tells me he saw something - as to how or why - if it was accidental, if it was not, etc - hard to say.

 

It sounds to me as if you are having a gut reaction as well - I feel very strongly that as mothers we should follow those instincts - even if we are wrong sometimes.

 

I do not want to get into details, but suffice it to say that I never "told" because I was afraid of the consequences to many people. When I tried to hint - well - it didn't work. Young kids just don't know how to handle it all.

 

Obviously care needs to be taken, and certainly it oculd be a horrible misunderstanding, but I do think you should do what your gut is telling you to do.

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You have to do what your gut is telling you to do. I think at 6, he's not making it up. The circumstances around it may be innocent or not. We have one step great uncle that tickled my daughter too much. Held her on his lap a little too long. He will never be allowed near her again. He lives in another state and we don't see him that much. When he does come to visit we are usually "busy". I feel that my own step father is not a good influence on my kids as he's an alcoholic. We don't see him unless absolutely neccessary. I've got to protect my kids. If I don't, who will? I would talk to the boys again and then I would not allow the boys to be alone with him again.

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I would want to be checking in with your older son. Most definitely.

 

From what you have said, at this point, absolutely no unsupervised visits. I would waffle on whether to say something to the other family members-- it would probably depend on conversation with older son. But, I think if it came up in conversation, I would not lie to SIL/ BIL.

 

I also agree with PP that it is likely your son back-peddled due to your response.

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ITA with the others.

Go with your gut.

 

I would also consider taking both boys to a counselor trained in this. I wouldn't tell them what this is about or even what a counselor does--just for someone to *play* with them. I know as a mother it's hard to believe something could have happened, yet this is a time for no regrets.

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I doubt you'll be doing unsupervised visits anytime soon. :(

 

This is what we do in our family:

 

We have an uncirced DS with some privacy desires and a DD who would strut naked with pride for anyone who asks. :D

And my DH is a medical doctor who talks a LOT about the human body. So there's our background.

 

We have language for times when we want to laugh. DS currently thinks it's utterly hysterical that he has a "pair of balls." If you say, "Ball!" to him right now, he will laugh until he cries. And farts are the most amazing thing to happen to anyone EVER in our house. We consider you family if you toot in our home.

 

So we do have our low brow humor moments.

 

But we've also taught our kids that when there might be something wrong with our bodies, that's it's time to use more clinical names. And something "wrong" also goes for if someone ever touches them and they think, "Hey, that might not be right!"

 

That's how we knew not to take DD's complaint about her labia seriously (uh, she put a piece of gravel up there to see where it would come out since her experiment with the rock in her ear ended so well the month previously... :glare: )

 

And that's how we knew DS' foreskin was doing it's normal thing boy thing. But DS was confused because it was doing something different than the day before. And we don't want our kids confused about how their bodies work or who has the right to touch them.

 

You don't want to scare your DS or make him ashamed of his pee pee or the jokes. Hopefully, someday you can turn the jokes into an ability for your child to come to you and talk to you about what his/her peers are doing regarding their bodies say when they are 15 or so.

But, you also want him to have the tools to know he can talk to you about stuff and you will know when it's time to take him seriously but not scary, KWIM?

 

I also agree with the posters who suspect there may be something medical going on with the GP. Or, it may be something as simple as forgetting to close the bathroom door. My parents do this all the time when we visit!! They are used to the house only having the two of them and their crazy little dog HAS to know where they are at all times so no closed doors when there's no company. My kids have learned to go slowly around the corners near the bathrooms because who wants to see Grammy with her pants around her ankles?? Ack.

 

It is also incredibly common for elderly people dealing with some dementia to be sexually inappropriate. Common as anything, oddly enough. I've had fascinating discussions about that with doctors, social workers, and nurses from all over. Your DS could have just been in the wrong place at the wrong time.

 

Is there anyone in the family you could discuss this with, besides the spouse?

 

Jen

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I agree with all of the others who have suggested that you or your dh speak with both of your sons about their Grandpa, and that you stop allowing unsupervised visits.

 

I have another suggestion. Can your dh speak with his siblings and ask if they have any reservations about Grandpa, or if their children have said or done anything that would indicate a problem? Perhaps you're not the only one who is seeing some red flags. Just because no one else has said anything about it, doesn't mean they're not having the same concerns.

 

Additionally, if Grandpa had to take a lie detector test, those other accusations were more than just a minor thing. The police were involved and charges were filed. People have passed lie detector tests and still been guilty, so please don't assume that because he passed the test and charges were dropped, that he was absolutely innocent. Also, the parents may have dropped the charges to avoid having their child testify in court, or because the poor kid was too traumatized to keep re-living the event.

 

I hope Grandpa is innocent and that this is a simple misunderstanding, but as soon as I read about a previous accusation (in addition to the info about two of your sons,) I became very worried.

 

Cat

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I also agree with the posters who suspect there may be something medical going on with the GP. Or, it may be something as simple as forgetting to close the bathroom door. My parents do this all the time when we visit!! They are used to the house only having the two of them and their crazy little dog HAS to know where they are at all times so no closed doors when there's no company. My kids have learned to go slowly around the corners near the bathrooms because who wants to see Grammy with her pants around her ankles?? Ack.

 

It is also incredibly common for elderly people dealing with some dementia to be sexually inappropriate. Common as anything, oddly enough. I've had fascinating discussions about that with doctors, social workers, and nurses from all over. Your DS could have just been in the wrong place at the wrong time.

 

Is there anyone in the family you could discuss this with, besides the spouse?

 

Jen

 

Actually the dementia possibility was in reference to another poster's father. As for the GP in question in my post, he's not elderly at all - he's 40 yrs old actually (16 yrs younger then MIL!).

 

I could talk to DH's brother's wife, but I'm afraid she'd say something to MIL.

 

I think I saw a website posted awhile with questions to ask if something inappropriate had happened, in a way that the child would understand and wouldn't be so scary? Or maybe I'm remembering wrong.

I think I will talk to my older DS, carefully. And try to talk to my DS 6 again, but go about it differently....and def no unsupervised visits.

I just feel sick over all of this. :(

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I have another suggestion. Can your dh speak with his siblings and ask if they have any reservations about Grandpa, or if their children have said or done anything that would indicate a problem? Perhaps you're not the only one who is seeing some red flags. Just because no one else has said anything about it, doesn't mean they're not having the same concerns.

 

 

 

:iagree:I'd be doing this. Often when one victim is removed from the situation, the predator simply moves onto the next. I couldn't have that on my conscience simply because I didn't want to cause tension in the family. The safety of the kids, ALL the kids, comes before any adult's feelings.

 

I do hope it's not what you think.

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My father (Biological) is not allowed to be anywhere near my children alone. He has never "done" anything, but his intentions toward small children I believe are less than innocent. He always wants to kiss them too much, and tried for the mouth all the time. He always tried to hold them, even when they ask to be let go. He only goes after YOUNG children, like 2 and under. Once they reach older than that he moves on to the next youngest in the family. I actually did confront my father when I was pregnant with my last, my daughter, and let him know that he would not be seeing her. He flipped out! Like went crazy. He's always been a very angry, hostile person and what I had to grow up with I could write a book about. But my instinct told me that someone with innocent intentions would not have acted that way when confronted with the news that the kids didn't want him all over them all the time. I see him and my mother maybe once every 4 months WITH my DH and children. He won't be alone with them EVER!

 

Sorry for the caps but I can't stress enough to follow your gut! I will protect my children with my very life, and I know you would too.

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I agree as well. There's also a different kind of mentality among some men of those older generations where going around in the nude in the locker room or bathroom or even the house among "the guys" is no big deal. They don't GET, sometimes, even though they probably should, that it matters. So I'd try to do all the fact-gathering that I could in a subtle way and end unsupervised visits, probably for good regardless.

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I have read the entire thread.

 

The past accusation may or may not have been false. Frankly, you don't have enough information to make that determination. It's very, very difficult to prosecute pedophiles, and far more of them get away with it than are successfully prosecuted. Another poster listed some of the reasons for that as well.

 

I see real red flags with your sons, and my heart goes out to you. Do not EVER let your sons be with this man unsupervised again. Please. Keep this rule firmly in the forefront of your mind even after time passes and you want to relax. You have enough cause for concern here to protect your children.

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I understand not wanting to falsely accuse without being "certain." At the same time, with a previous accusation (or discussion thereof), PLUS what your son said recently, I wouldn't want him alone with step-dad unless you were "certain" nothing was wrong. Which you really can't be, under the circumstances.

:iagree:

You can't undo harm. There's no benefit that I can see to risking alone time, but loads of reason to avoid it. Frankly, the previous accusation would have been enough for me to supervise closely. Kids don't just come out with accusations, imo.

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I didn't read all the replies, so I'm sorry if I'm repeating anything here, but I would say first of all there is no way to know who would do something like that. Neither your dh nor anyone can tell for certain about another person. Second, you know your child better than anyone. Does this seem like normal joking behaviour for him? To me, it seems kind of odd, for him to come out with that. I mean, I'm not sure if I would expect a 6 yo to think of that and think it's gross all on his own. I guess your family's attitude toward whether we "show our private parts" to others may be a part of it. So, I guess it could come from that. Still.....I don't know.

 

This is so tough. Of course you don't want to falsley accuse or ignore it. Perhaps, just keep a closer eye on when your ds visits and not let him be alone with him for now?

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You know, I have four boys. I know that they are prone to make inappropriate references to their privates now and again. That said, in light of what I quoted above, there would be no more unsupervised visits for my children. I just couldn't be comfortable with that.

 

These are my thoughts, as well.

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Thanks for everyone for all the advice! Its really been eating me up today and I am just praying I'm wrong. I don't know if my stomach is in knots because of mommy instincts, or just because its a scary subject.

 

It just seems that there are some red flags here, and it may exactly explain why we've had the problems we've had with our 8 yr old. But I don't want this to turn into a witch hunt. Of course my children come first, and I'm the first to jump in and protect my children whenever I have a concern...I just don't want to be "jumping in" if I'm totally off base here.

I do know that if it had been my dad, or brother, that my son had said this about - I'd be JUST as worried. Because I know that you just never really know....

 

I just keep going back to the conversation, and how random it seemed. Yes we were talking about cuddling, and cuddling when we were adults...but how did DS jump from cuddling with his mom as an adult to how gross old people are, specifically that his grandma is not gross but his grandpa is. He spends more time with my parents then he does those grandparents...so it was just kind of, misplaced. Unless he just sees MIL as being "old" and that's why he related MIL into our conversation, and subsequently Dh's step-father.

He said that he said this because he thought it was funny...yet he wasn't really being totally silly and giggly when he said it.

And...for him to relate showing a "pee-pee" to an adult doing this is weird. I could see him laughing about his brothers showing their pee-pee's...but adults don't show their private parts to him, so why he'd think to say that? I don't know. Could it have been an accidental walking in on the bathroom when he was there? Maybe...but I don't know if he'd say "papa showed me his pee pee" in those words. ?

 

Later as I was questioning him, he kept saying he was sure he was joking...but maybe because my mommy radar flew way up after that initial convo with him, but I didn't fully believe him. He also said, "what if I can't remember the exact day it happened?" when I asked him to tell me whatever, and whenever something happens that makes him uncomfortable, no matter what. So I don't know if he was thinking back to something that happened, or if he was just asking general questions.

 

I do know that I feel like I need to get to the bottom of this, but I don't know that I will without the truth coming out if something did happen. I'd want to warn BIL and his four daughters right away (they are all the same ages as my boys)...but not unless I had more to go on then that one conversation with DS yesterday.

 

(sorry jumping around, but trying to answer other replies I saw in this thread that I haven't addressed yet..)

I don't think that BIL and his wife have ever had a concern with FIL, but I do know that last summer they said they weren't going to send their girls over there for a week like they usually do. But they didn't really give a reason why. However they did end up sending two of their girls over together, and my DS went with them at that time. Although, the girls were their a few days before my DS got there, so when they left, he was there alone for a few more days. That was his first time ever going there for a week alone since he's been too young before. My DS 8 has been there 2-3 times alone before.

 

Anyway, I've wrote enough...tomorrow I plan to talk to my DS 8 alone. I plan on telling him a story that I recently heard about a little boy who had a family member do inappropriate things to him (maybe I'll say a cousin or something?) and it made me worry about my own children and how it was okay to talk to me about anything...etc. How would you word something like this?

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Actually the dementia possibility was in reference to another poster's father. As for the GP in question in my post, he's not elderly at all - he's 40 yrs old actually (16 yrs younger then MIL!).

 

I could talk to DH's brother's wife, but I'm afraid she'd say something to MIL.

 

I think I saw a website posted awhile with questions to ask if something inappropriate had happened, in a way that the child would understand and wouldn't be so scary? Or maybe I'm remembering wrong.

I think I will talk to my older DS, carefully. And try to talk to my DS 6 again, but go about it differently....and def no unsupervised visits.

I just feel sick over all of this. :(

 

 

Wait one second. He's FORTY?

 

Eeep. I'm sorry. You're going to have to investigate this carefully. What does your DH say or are you two separated?

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You know reading your last post made me think this: maybe he did "show him his peepee" but that was the extent of it. So to your ds, it might've been odd or gross, but not a huge incident that stood out in his mind. Perhaps not in the vein of "don't tell anyone about this" but still along the lines of something you should be very concerned about. I'm just saying that maybe it's not clear in your ds' head, because perhaps it was not a clear cut incident, but set up on his grandfather's part to look more casual??

 

I'm definitely feeling red flags for you on this. I hope it's not anything like this, but just take care of that precious little guy.:grouphug:

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Wait one second. He's FORTY?

 

Eeep. I'm sorry. You're going to have to investigate this carefully. What does your DH say or are you two separated?

 

Thanks so much for everyone's thoughts and advice. :)

 

I talked to my DH some more about this (no we're not separated) and he understands my concerns, but still insists that he doesn't think his step-father is capable of anything like that. However he said he'd have a casual conversation with DS 6 to see if he says anything to him. Otherwise he says, as of right now, there's really not any way to prove anything - like you all are saying - and we just need to keep our eyes open more and be more cautious.

He did end up talking to DS 6 again, but DS6 said the same thing he told me-that he was just joking because he thought it would be funny to say that.

 

There's too many so-called red-flags though to make me feel totally at ease, so as suggested we'll just have to keep our eyes/ears open a bit more and not do the unsupervised visits.

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Everyone has made some good points here. This situation reminds me of something I read in Protecting the Gift recently. The author was discussing how often parents who might be in a situation where they have a nanny or regular babysitter and start to suspect something inappropriate is going on will postpone intervening until they have something concrete to go on, instead of simply listening to their intuition. So they'll install a nannycam or some such device and wait until they have proof of the abuse toward their child which for some reason helps them feel better about accusing someone. But in the meantime they have subjected their child to this situation for longer than necessary just to get that proof when they're child would have been better served if they had stepped in immediately. Ironic and sad really.

 

It sounds like you have a good plan of action and are troubled enough about this to at least end the infrequent unsupervised visits. Good luck getting to the bottom of it!

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