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I'm having a hard time right now dealing with my son's father. We are both 27 and I met him 2 years ago. I also have an 8-year-old-daughter whose father is not in her life. I raised her on my own and her father told me from the beginning he wasn't going to be around and I accepted that and created a beautiful life with her.

When I was 4 months pregnant (with his baby) I found out he had slept with a 16 year old (he was 25 at the time). In Canada (where we live) the age of consent is sadly, 16. I was mortified when I found out, because it goes against everything I know to be morally right. I later then found out that when he was 19 he dated a 15 year old for a couple of years.

When we were together the first time, I left my son and his father together for a weekend. I came back to lots of porn on the computer, which is attached to the TV in the living room. But that's not the most disturbing part; it's the fact that he watches Youtube music videos and gets off to them.

Now, my daughter likes to watch those types of music videos for the music, and it just highly disturbs me to know he gets off to that, and not knowing where my son was when he was doing it is another thing that really bothers me. I also found that he was watching porn on my daughter's iPad, which I pretty much begged him not to do in the beginning as I don't need my daughter seeing such things. He did his best to delete it, but come on, where are his morals?

Unfortunately, his mother did not raise him properly, and he has such a disrespect for women. He likes things done his way, and if it's not done that way he gets mad. When we were together as well he had a problem staring at women (the young ones with barely any clothing on), I brought it up many times and he said he knows he does it and that he will stop and he never did. He would say things like "I was never taught to not stare," and "it's harder to not stare," and "I don't even know I'm doing it". However, he's not abusive in any way towards me or the children.

This relationship left me with zero self confidence but that is besides the point; it's not about our relationship; it's about him and his child's relationship.

My major concern is the fact that he has never gotten help for the way he was raised, the fact that several times he has told me he knows he needs help. He says he doesn't like the person he is, and doesn't want to be that way anymore, but he still hasn't gone to get help.

It worries me that he will one day look at my daughter sexually because of his enjoyment of younger girls, and if not my daughter then her friends.

I also fear that our son will learn his ways of disrespecting women and thinking it's ok to take advantage of young girls for his own sexual wants.

We separated 2 weeks ago. Yesterday he started asking to see the kids. If this goes to court, I can't see a judge taking any of my concerns into consideration as it's all speculation, but I truly do just want my kids to be happy and be raised in a healthy environment.

I in no way want him out of the picture. I want him to be a positive role model for his son, and even though he wants to be in my daughter's life, I have a very hard time with that right now, especially since he has told me twice now that he loves my daughter more than he loves his own son who is now 7 months old. That is not something I enjoyed hearing. He has a massive family too, and I have no family just me and my kids and I just want the best for them.

I guess my question is whether or not I should let my kids near him.

Am I just being selfish or are my concerns actually legitimate? Because I do truly feel he needs help of some sort to not only become a happier person (he never laughs!) but to become a positive role model to his child that can protect him and show him the right path in life. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  • I'm a bit confused as to who are the people here, there's you as a mom, there's a father, who does the son and daughter belong to? – Bradman175 Nov 8 '16 at 22:21
  • Hi Catherine, and welcome to the site. There is so much going on here, and the timeline is a bit confusing. You say you were 4 months pregnant when you met your son's "father". Does that mean you have a two year old as well, who is not his biological child, and the 7 month old is his? Do you care about the legalities of visitation? Did you know about the 16 year old when you started dating him? How was your self-esteem before you met him? I did my best to try to sort this out and still I'm confused. Maybe you can clarify the timeline? – anongoodnurse Nov 8 '16 at 22:22
  • I just realised my big error in the beginning of my story, what I meant to say is I met him 2 years ago and then I got pregnant and when I was 4 months pregnant that is when I started finding out about everything and what he had done with the younger girls. – Catherine Dubois Nov 8 '16 at 23:58
  • My daughters father is not in her life, I raised her on my own and her father told me from the beginning he wasn't going to be around and I accepted that and created a beautiful life with her. I truly thought my son's father was going to be my everything until I found all of this out and now I feel like I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place. – Catherine Dubois Nov 9 '16 at 0:02
  • I would think that using a child's electronic device to view porn, with the risk that the child would see it or that there would be history on the device that would lead to a child being able to access it IS something that a judge would take very seriously. Getting secretly turned on by videos the child might normally watch? Probably a tougher thing to tangibly prove (he'd just deny it and ask you to prove it). – PoloHoleSet Nov 10 '16 at 16:02
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Everything you, and the father, do should be in the best interest of the children.

Using porn in itself is not harmful to children

Using porn in ways that allow children to see either the pornography or the person using the pornography is harmful to children, and the father needs to make some changes to the way he uses pornography. He needs to stop using pornography on devices belonging to the children. He needs to stop using pornography on devices easily accessible by the children. Anyone should see this as a reasonable request that's protective of the children, and if he doesn't it shows he's not protective of the children. Any court would recognise that.

He has previously engaged in, I think, criminal offending behaviour. (Sex with a 15 year old while he was 19). He has previously engaged in behaviour that is similar to that offending behaviour (sex with a 16 year old while he was 25). He is currently engaging in behaviour that is similar to that offending behaviour (masturbating to legal videos of young people (If that's what he's doing, it's a bit unsure from your text)). In my opinion you should make a referral to your local child protective social services.

He is currently engaged in abusive behaviour towards you. You need the support of a good domestic abuse organisation. They will help you with the legal stuff, especially with gathering evidence in a safe way about his offending behaviour.

You need to show that you have the children's best interests in mind, and that you are acting to protect the children.

Note that children have a right to a family life with their parents, and this applies even if the parents are abusive, although contact will be severely limited and restricted to closely supervised contact in a specialist children's contact centre. I think a court would be more favourable to you if you asked contact to be supervised than if you ask for zero contact.

None of this is legal advice. You do need to seek legal advice. Stuff I've written might be nonsense in Canada

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The other answers are rather good, so I will not repeat what they've said. I will only add that I believe you are right to be concerned for your daughter. Unfortunately there have been cases where a predator targets a single mother with a young daughter in order to gain access to said daughter. I say this with hesitation because I do not know the entire story -- only you know whether the signs are there. Some of what you have mentioned (i.e., him watching porn on YOUR daughter's iPod where she could have easily stumbled upon it, and the fact that he has shown interest in adolescent girls in the past) are definite red flags. Do not feel guilty about protecting your daughter. You need to listen to your gut on this one, and seek child welfare services in your area for their advice. Do not hold back anything from them or the judge - even if you think it might be trivial.

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  1. Set up a child safety filter on the iPad and the desktop computer that's connected to the TV. This will protect your children from your estranged partner's behavior, and it will also protect your children from landing at an unexpected site by accident (which can happen all too easily).

  2. The relationship he had with the 15yo when he was 19, and the 16yo when he was 26, have nothing to do, objectively, with the present, and have nothing to do with your 8yo daughter. Those relationships are yesterday's news. However, thinking about those relationships is making you feel anxious. Anxiety is a very real thing. I would recommend that you start with an appointment with your primary care doctor and telling him or her that you have a tendency toward feeling anxious. Your doctor may want to discuss some medications that might help you, and may refer you to a good therapist.

  3. I don't know how it works in Canada, but in the U.S. there is a government agency that can supervise non-custodial visitation, if there is cause for concern. I would think there would be something similar in Canada. In the meantime, is there someone reliable who would be willing to be present for the visits? Perhaps one of his relatives, someone you trust and respect?

  4. If not, then I suggest you start with short visits (2 hours at a time), so he can build up his reliability and you can build up your trust and confidence.

The ogling and gawking are rather rude, but isn't it better to ogle and fantasize, than to act on those fantasies?

Pornography on the internet is a sad fact of modern life. Please don't take it personally.

  • Putting porn on a child's electronic devices is not a sad fact of modern life. It's a choice that responsible people just don't make. – swbarnes2 May 1 '18 at 18:00

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