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Not sure what to call this...

saruhhh_04's picture

SO's son will be starting school next month. He will be going into the same district that his father and I both attended. In our experiences, if the school at all senses that there is an issue at the child's home, they get CPS involved almost immediately. For example, I have dealt with trichotillomania (compulsively pull out my eyelashes/eyebrows) since I was 9 y/o. The school noticed that I had bare spots and called CPS on my parents...even though my parents were not harming me and I did not say anything to the school. CPS finally stopped dropping by after 1.5 years.

Back to SS: a lot of what he says is inappropriate. He compulsively lies (which he thinks is the same as "pranking" someone). He told me that his mom let's him harm himself by jumping off of the roof and other things. When I asked if that was true, he smiled and said "yeah". After I asked again, he said, "pranked ya!". He also tells us that his mom does this 'fun thing' where he's allowed to pee in tiny cups and she gives it to other people for money. To make this shorter, I'll list a few other examples:

  • He's constantly talking about death and killing people/animals...he also threatens people with death scenarios (and he thinks it's funny)
  • He says that he loves being drunk and that his mom let's him drink alcohol and that she drinks all the time
  • He also talks about pipes and bongs (we do not have anything like this at our place)
  • He talks about why his mom broke up with a guy or why she isn't friends with someone...and he goes into great detail
  • He admits to bullying others and that he is encouraged to fight at his house
  • He has mentioned sexual acts
  • One of the newest things he's mentioned is that his mom no longers helps him wipe when he finishes in the bathroom, if he asks she yells at him to do it on his own. So he just wipes once, and then that's it. So now he walks around with a rash and itchy bottom.
  • We've recently noticed that when BM picks him up, she does not secure him in his seat (he still needs to be in a booster by state law). As soon as he gets in and closes the door, she takes off. He does not know how to buckle himself in - he needs assistance every time.

There's other examples, but I don't want to go on and on. I'm sure we'll hear even more stuff. But with everything, I can't help but think that CPS will be called and be at BM's house often, should he say some of the things that he says...and this could make his home life worse. I can easily understand why. And if everything that he says is actually true (again, he does lie a lot), it's absolutely heartbreaking to me that this is how he is being raised.


marblefawn's picture

Oh, wow. Maybe be proactive and let the school know he has a propensity to "exaggerate" and tell "tall tales," but you and his father are on it and it's being addressed.

If you think any of it is true, maybe CPS should be involved? It's a tough situation. But whoever alerted CPS to your situation is probably gone by now, so maybe there's less to worry about.

The schools are in a tough spot -- damned if they do, damned if they don't. But if you let them know the situation, maybe they will focus more on other students.

Step-girlfriend's picture

I feel like the only way to proceed is to do what Marblefawn suggested first; call the school and explain the situation. And then get that kid in to see a therapist. This is pretty worrysome behavior, and it could be risky to not take it seriously. I think a therapist may be able to discern what is truth and what is lies, and make a recommendation from there.

SteppedOut's picture

CAN OP's SO call the school in regards to his son?

Technically and for all intents and purposes, he is NOT legally his parent...unless the mother lists him as someone (parent or otherwise) that can contact the school in reference to the child, he will get ZERO information about the child.

OP, you are spending so much time worrying about this when your SO has no power to do anything until he decides to actually do something about establishing paternity. 


saruhhh_04's picture

Just because SO is not legally his son's 'dad', does not mean that I need to stop worrying and let whatever happens to him, happen. I think most people would worry if they hear half of what I do. Especially if they were in a position where they know that they cannot do much to actually help the child. I'm can't just sit back and not care about what happens to him. If his mom is not taking care of him, I'm going to say it. I'm not saying SO is perfect at all. There are things that he could change (like, yes, establishing paternity...but I cannot continue trying to force him, he has to get up and do that on his own). But if any of what SS tells us is true, BM is a piece of work and should not be legally allowed to have care of him.

AlwaysSmiling's picture

Maybe CPS needs to get involved!

saruhhh_04's picture

I have thought this so many times! Maybe SS will be better in someone else's care. But I have also heard of people going into state/foster care, and having a terrible experience in the household they were placed in. A lot of SS actions and mannerisms have been so ingrained into his mind for almost 6 years...I cannot begin to imagine the amount of time and patience it would take to try to reverse that.

AlwaysSmiling's picture

I used to work with CPS. CPS should not be used as a tool for getting people in trouble- it doesn't work like that. They are to be used to help. They used to have a really bad rap for 'taking people's kids' but there has been more of a shift towards family preservation. They have lots of services (depending on funding of course) that are designed to help keep families together. They offer lots of counseling type services. Think of CPS being more like a service that helps people with kids- but they of course have the authority to take children that they deem are not in safe situations. 



notarelative's picture

Schools are mandated reporters here. Teachers and administrators are at risk of losing their licenses if they do not report many of the things your SS has said. If he tells them to someone at school, CPS will be called.

If he says any of these things and you have any reason to think they are true, you need to call CPS.

Dad needs to get his son into therapy to deal with the lies, pranking, and death talk. School therapy, while good, is not designed for children with these issues. SS needs therapy with a therapist who can work with mom and dad also.


Disneyfan's picture

I'm a mandated reporter. (Teacher)   If I heard any of those comments, I would have to call CPS.  A parent giving me a heads up would not change that.  I'm not putting my career, licenses, pensions...on the line for anyone.

If dad is aware of these "pranks" and has  made the CHOICE not to get his kid help AND call CPS, then he is just as bad as the mother.

Oh, I bet mom is hearing similar lies/pranks about what goes on in your home.

saruhhh_04's picture

I'm sure she is, too. My sister is a teacher, and she has had to report a few concerns to CPS. I wouldn't want anyone to ignore this.

saruhhh_04's picture

This is a silly question...if I were to call CPS on his mom, but I didn't know her exact address since she moves from place to place so frequently, is there any information that we would be able to provide to help them locate her?

We know her real first name (she goes by an alias on social media). But we do not know her legal last name. What she has on social media is made-up. She's gone by so many other surnames in the past, I'm not sure my SO can even remember which one is her legal one.

We have very limited information when it comes to her. We know her SO's legal name and they supposedly live together now. But we aren't sure if that's even true. I feel helpless because I see what is happening, and I know it is not healthy for SS to live in an environment like that. But I have nothing to really give authorities to make anything happen.

SteppedOut's picture

Hold up. SO doesn't know BM's name? 

Wow. Not sure how he is ever going to establish paternity if he doesn't know her name (and therefore his son's name). Or address. 

Holy wowsers. You should try to back off of all this. You are really spending a lot of time and head space on what seems more and more to be a losing battle. 


saruhhh_04's picture

He knows her first name...and what her last name was at the time that they were together. She has changed it almost 4 times since then. And who knows if she's gone back to what it originally was or not. He knows his sons name because she gave their son both SO's middle and last name.

I'm a very caring person. I can't just let this go, it's not easy for me. I want SS to be in a good household, and I don't think he's getting that from where he currently is.

SteppedOut's picture

It doesn't sound like he is in a good household. Not at all. But without your SO caring about it as much as you do (and establishing paternity so he can help his son) there is little you can do.

If you have spent any time reading other people's posts, I am sure you have seen the statement that many others have made..."You can't care more than the parents.". I mean, technically you can, but it will get you nowhere. 

BM is bad, BM is bad...what does that make your SO if he won't do anything about it? I'm not trying to be mean; this is a question you must ask yourself.


saruhhh_04's picture

My own parents even told me that same thing. It's hard for me though, like I said, I care too much. It's like a faucet I haven't learned how to turn off.

I know SO isn't a bad person, he loves SS and the way he talks, he wants to be apart of his life. But there is something that is stopping him from doing what he needs to do. I don't know if it's him questioning if he's the actual father...or the fact that if he is on the certificate, he is in a sense legally connected to BM (and there is a lot anger and resentment there). Or maybe it is something as simple as being scared of paying CS. I can't get to the bottom of what it is though, and that's equally as frustrating.

Disneyfan's picture

Based on this blog and the last one, I think your SO is BSing you.  He knows that he can tell you anything and you will believe him.  

SteppedOut's picture

I agree, the reason he is not seeking paternity is because he doesn't want to pay child support... So he is not going to try and save his son because of money that he's worried he's going to have to pay. I don't think I would want to be with somebody like that, but that's just me.

notarelative's picture

It's almost time for school to start. When BM registers him for school, she will have to show the birth certificate. SS will be registered at school under his legal name. If you have a concern that needs to be reported to CPS then, you can just tell CPS his legal name and the name of the school. 



Whattheheck's picture

Why would you not call them yourself? The comments you have made here would be (should be) reported. That is not normal, and too bad if your SO doesn't like it, you care about the boy? Then call. You know deep down that doing nothing is way worse.

Step-girlfriend's picture

I read your newest post (about it possibly being your last one), and I feel really bad that you don't feel supported! I am not "officially" a SM either, (hence the step-girlfriend username), but I haven't had that pointed out to me, sucks and is really shitty of others on this site if they have said that to you. We are all supposed to be here to help each other and be a sounding board, and we are all in the same situation, married or not- you are in a tough spot where your SO isn't on the birth certificate, but that doesn't mean you don't feel frustration and shouldn't be allowed to post looking for support. And someone repeatedly telling you "you can't do anything because he isn't on the birth certificate" is not really supportive or helpful. Just as being told to "stop worrying" isn't going to actually make you stop worrying. Oh, you told me to stop worrying? I will instantly do that! It doesn't work that way.

Sorry your posts frustrated you more than helped you. Hopefully some of the people posting will read that and be a little more thoughtful when they respond to people. We're all people, struggling in the role of an SM, looking for support.




ESMOD's picture

It sounds like you truly care about this kid and are at your wit's end about what is going on.  I don't think people are trying to be unsupportive or mean when they tell you your DH needs to establish paternity.  He does.  The fact that he cannot legally prove this is his child is going to prevent you and him from doing things on behalf of his son that might help and protect him.  I mean I understand he can get a paternity test.. but he hasn't... and while you can't force him.. why hasn't he?  I mean, if he doesn't care about his child to the extent you do and doesn't want to establish his rightful place (maybe maybe not) in the child's life then while you still may worry for the boy, there is really nothing you can do beyond try to figure out how to call CPS on a situation that you see as harmful to a kid.  Just like if you thought your neighbor was abusing his kids.

And.. people are quite often told on here.. "you are not the SM.. you are still the GF".. I know that Ashmarie for example was told this and I have seen it on other posts.  It's not that if you are not a SM that you might not experience some of the same frustrations.. but you are also not legally bound to the children's father and there are some differences in how things play out depending on the situation.

One saying on here that I have seen quoted quite frequently is "you can't care more than the bio parents".  And I think it's along the lines of sometimes we have to accept that there are things that are beyond our paygrade/control and we can't force another adult to behave or do things we want them to do.  All we can do is decide whether this is the right situation for US.

Now personally, I have not read all your blogs, but it seems to be a red flag that your DH won't pursue paternity.  Is he not wanting the responsibiility? Is there a big likelihood the kid isn't his?  Is it the cost?  I think when people point out you are the GF.. they may also be trying to point out you have a simpler exit than some of the married women who have kids with their spouse... and are now realizing the spouse isn't a great parent and losing respect for them.

Again.. not trying to not be supportive.. but I think trying to provide explanation/advice which may not always be what we want to hear.. but sometimes what we need to hear.


Iamwoman's picture


Great advice from ESMOD.

You know Saruh? I think most of us here on this site have been told truths that we don’t want to hear at one point or another, and that can be a hard pill to swallow.

I personally like this site, and accept the few troublemakers as a thorn in my side in order to gain valuable insight and wisdom from the (mostly) wonderful women who come on here, take time out of their busy days, and use mental power to really think about my situations from every possible angle.

You really don’t get that on other sites. On other sites you get vague supportive comments, with anything remotely smelling of negativity being censored or shut down by the “feelings police.”

Did you know that you can delete comments on your own post? It’s a useful tool.

I also experienced one particular STalker who relentlessly commented with insulting or degrading or just plain offensive comments. I won’t name names because I’ve noticed she has simmered down with her comments on everyone’s blogs and become more reasonable for the most part since then, but I made it very clear to her to stay away from my blogs, and I also deleted every comment she’s ever made.

If I see an OP disagrees with my comment, I leave it alone. Some STalkers can’t stand for someone to dismiss their opinion and will comment relentlessly and aggressively in an attempt to force their ideas down your throat. Just delete! They’ll eventually get the hint.


As a side note, I really do think you’ve gotten fantastic and unbiased advice. It may not be what you want to hear, but it’s what you need to hear, and someday you’ll see that but will probably still be miffed about it.

Youre in a tough situation. There’s no denying that. No amount of sugar coated sappy sweet comments can change it. Only your SO can by taking action. If not, then YOU can by taking action and calling CPS.