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worried about a family member

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Gottagetthrough posted 6/28/2013 08:05 AM

my sil has 3 kids.... 12, 9 & 7. The 12 year old has emotional issues, and trichotillomania (she has been pulling her eyebrows and lashes out for about 5 years, has none at all)

The 7 year old was having issues last year where he would not go to school, and SIL had to bribe him with a trip to Game Stop every day to go... he was also pooping in his pants at school. It was an on going problem, school was in contact with SIL, etc.

BIL works a lot, and recently rented a house near an old high school friend. The old high school friend had a pic of the two of them on facebook that BIL quickly took down... So I don't know how present HE is.

I mentioned to my WH last year I was concerned about the kids because of the youngest kid's behaviors... he blew it off. Its sort of a family joke that BIL & SIL are non-parents, they have lots of baby sitters, nannies...

SIL was also the person who gave my WH Klonopin in 2009. She has a prescription & when my WH was having a bipolar breakdown, she said here, try this... My WH ended up addicted and doing lots of prescription meds...

WH has Bipolar I & anxiety disorder. SIL has an anxiety disorder (it was so great in 2001 that she was scared they would put her in mental hospital, and she pooped in her pants trying to cross the street one day.) She was once a big exec, making tons of money, and after kids, she has become a shell of her self. BIL is still a big exec making money, and I feel like when we visit, he's irritated that SIL is having issues.

I see pics on SIL's facebook, and every single one she is out drinking with friends. Every one. None of her kids, or BIL.

I don't care about the BIL & SIL, I care about the KIDS. Deal is, when my WH had a bipolar meltdown in 2009 and tried to self medicate with 20 klonopin and Jack daniels EVERY DAY and wake up with Ritalin, lost 2 jobs, etc etc... My ILS did nothing to help. My ILS allowed my kids to go to WH's house and be taken care of by a mentally ill drug addict (It was court ordered, and I *knew* something was wrong, but I could not prove it, and truly did not know the extent of the drug abuse until WH came clean) I went to trial 3 times in one year, trying to get supervised visits for my kids... each judge said no, and one even said I was just a bitter jilted wife)

I begged my ILS for help, told them I found drugs, told them SIL gave WH the klonopin... nothing... Just emails to WH that I saw later on how I was a vindictive bitch, etc.

I say I can forgive WH for his behavior because he was mentally ill and an addict, and got help, takes his meds, sees his psychiatrist, and has apologized & is remorseful. I say I can not forgive the ILS as they were fully functioning and just looked the other way.

I feel like I am looking the other way, now. SIL was letting her DD eat a bag of marshmallows for breakfast one day and someone said, Why is she eating marshmallows... SIL said, Its too hard to cook. SHe's said the same thing about taking them to church, etc (its too hard with 3 kids, I cant)...

I think SIL is depressed. What else, I don't know. She gained about 50 lbs in a short time several years ago.

Do I just shut my mouth and say nothing, or encourage WH to talk to his sister or BIL. I just feel bad for the kids and I see my own family's experience with mental illness in them... maybe I'm seeing too much of my own family in them, and should keep out of their business...

Sad in AZ posted 6/28/2013 08:36 AM

My first question is: What do you think you can do for these kids? In reality, nothing other than perhaps call CPS or whatever Child Services are available in your area.

You can't force the parents or grandparents to act. You have your own difficult situation with a mentally ill spouse and children of your own.

You have compassion--that's wonderful, but don't let it go into KISA or codependency. Do the best you can with your family, be supportive if possible of your neices/nephews, but unless you want to get protective services involved, there isn't much else you can do. The only caveat is if you see absolute abuse, you have to act and get protective services involved.

I'm speaking here from many years of experience. I've had family members on both sides who were piss poor parents; the kids all survived; some have issues, but, really, who doesn't.

Amazonia posted 6/28/2013 08:41 AM

Could you have child services check in on the family? It doesn't sound like your extended family is going to do much or be effective if they try.

Gottagetthrough posted 6/28/2013 10:08 AM

thanks for the advice...

yeah, this is not a cps case.

Thanks for making me feel like its ok to just stay out of this, too. I keep complaining the no one stepped up when WH had his problems, and I am feeling a little hypocritical about not saying something when I see similarities with his sister...

Just gonna keep my big mouth shut.

[This message edited by Gottagetthrough at 10:12 AM, June 28th (Friday)]

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