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Old 01-26-2020, 09:47 AM
 
Location: Florida
6,418 posts, read 4,177,371 times
Reputation: 11665

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaredC View Post
That’s a good idea. Also, you pointed out a huge double standard too. Imagine, had I been the mother, in this situation, asking if it is appropriate for a four year old to couch surf with her father in a similar household. Everyone would be up in arms and saying “that’s no way for a four year old to live, even temporarily!!”
I think you are mistaken. I think it's important for loving, competent parents to have equal (or as close to equal as feasible) parenting time with their children. I'm not seeing that these are random hobos coming in and out of the house, but family members who live there. And I'm also hearing that this is a temporary situation, not where she will be for the next 5 years. A four-year-old is a year out of diapers... not even old enough to go to kindergarten. This is a non-issue regardless of which parent it is.
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Old 01-26-2020, 10:00 AM
 
Location: Brentwood, Tennessee
48,514 posts, read 46,777,539 times
Reputation: 95010
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnotherTouchOfWhimsy View Post

I'm not seeing that these are random hobos coming in and out of the house, but family members who live there. And I'm also hearing that this is a temporary situation, not where she will be for the next 5 years. A four-year-old is a year out of diapers... not even old enough to go to kindergarten. This is a non-issue regardless of which parent it is.
I guess it all depends on how you look at things.

You could easily say that a 4-year-old is almost in kindergarten, and all my kids were potty-trained at age 2. So not necessarily as babyish as you're depicting.

Also, the sister's boyfriend isn't exactly "family." He may stay there all the time, but statistically those tangentially related people are the ones who prey upon children ... those people your child "kinda knows" but doesn't REALLY know.

I'm not trying to be alarmist or saying that's going to happen. Just pointing out that it isn't necessary to infantilize a 4-year-old for the sake of argument. My youngest son was almost 4 feet tall at age 4. Sleeping on a couch with him would not have lasted long.

Jared has written about this family for years. They don't do things the way he would, and they aren't going to change (obviously) to accommodate this situation. All he can do is make changes with the way he operates.
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Old 01-26-2020, 10:41 AM
 
Location: Florida
6,418 posts, read 4,177,371 times
Reputation: 11665
Quote:
Originally Posted by BirdieBelle View Post
I guess it all depends on how you look at things.

You could easily say that a 4-year-old is almost in kindergarten, and all my kids were potty-trained at age 2. So not necessarily as babyish as you're depicting.

Also, the sister's boyfriend isn't exactly "family." He may stay there all the time, but statistically those tangentially related people are the ones who prey upon children ... those people your child "kinda knows" but doesn't REALLY know.

I'm not trying to be alarmist or saying that's going to happen. Just pointing out that it isn't necessary to infantilize a 4-year-old for the sake of argument. My youngest son was almost 4 feet tall at age 4. Sleeping on a couch with him would not have lasted long.

Jared has written about this family for years. They don't do things the way he would, and they aren't going to change (obviously) to accommodate this situation. All he can do is make changes with the way he operates.
Maybe. My kids at four were tiny peanuts and still slept in my bed comfortably. I'm picturing them sharing a sectional or a pull-out sofa... not curled up together on a loveseat. If the family members or their boyfriends are child predators, then obviously that is a problem. I'd guess that if that were the case, though, then the child is safer nestled next to mama than she would be in her own bedroom, where no other adults would be in the night, right?

It's purely cultural that we expect small children to sleep alone in their own bedrooms. In much of the world, they sleep with their parents. My Japanese exchange student, who came to live with us for a year when she was 15, had a hard time sleeping at first because she was used to sleeping on a mat next to her mother on the living room floor. And they were a well-off family in a city high-rise apartment, not a poor family living in some rural area without proper housing. There is no need for a 4-year-old child to have her own bedroom for the sake of privacy or safety. I don't think it's worth jeopardizing the mother's relationship with the child by calling authorities over this matter. It's not good for the child or for the mom... or for the relationship between the child and the dad, truthfully. She will grow up with the understanding that "dad took me away from mom because he didn't like the (perfectly safe and reasonable) sleeping arrangement that we had for a few months."
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Old 01-26-2020, 10:58 AM
 
1,294 posts, read 1,639,258 times
Reputation: 3949
But the issue here is... there's no way to know this is only going to last for a few months.

I'm not advocating calling CPS or changing the 50/50 split. I do think that Jared needs to get a lawyer and get a formal custody agreement in place through the courts. It isn't just the issue of appropriate living arrangements that should be spelled out (although I have a feeling if mom finds out they're going to court, she'll get motivated to get that apartment pretty quick--it's not going to look good for her when dad stands up and says daughter has her on bedroom in his house and all she can say is that they're couch surfing), but other issues that may come up down the line now that they're no longer together. Like whether boyfriends/girlfriends can spend the night when the child is present. Like whether boyfriends/girlfriends or any other non-relative can be alone with the child without the other parent giving permission in advance (we just had another thread on this.) Like how decisions are made about school and medical care. You get these things spelled out in advance so that when they come up a plan is in place both parents have agreed on for the good of the kid. Not just wait until mommy starts having sleepovers with her new boyfriend with the daughter there and freak out.
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Old 01-26-2020, 11:10 AM
 
Location: Camberville
12,767 posts, read 17,628,471 times
Reputation: 21561
This is such a middle class problem.


I live in a perfectly nice apartment complex. Because the cost of living has skyrocketed in my region, even a 1 bedroom is pushing $1600 a month and 2 bedrooms are $1900+. It takes over an hour to get to Boston from here during working hours, and we're not a trendy suburb by any means. Many of my neighbors have 3 or 4 kids in those 2 bedroom apartments. Sometimes grandparents also live there. My neighbor across the hall has 4 kids - parents share a bedroom with the baby, their two daughters have a bedroom, and their son is in the living room. They're saving for a down payment on a house and you know what? Good for them. I don't live in a slum, just among pragmatic people. My upstairs neighbors live in a 1 bedroom and have a toddler and are about to give birth to another infant. The grandparents come stay for a week or two - or up to a month - at a time as well. They do fine.



Prior to this, I lived in a two family home in a closer-in suburb where housing costs had more than doubled in 10 years - especially as young professionals (like myself) moved in with roommates and could afford more. My downstairs neighbors were married living with 3 boys plus weekends with the two teenagers from a previous marriage in a 2 bed/1 bath apartment. Again, not a slum or trashy people -they both worked for the city and had college degrees - but they were saving for a downpayment for a house the best way they knew how. They had bunkbeds in the very small bedroom, a trundle bed for the little ones, and either pull out couches or air mattresses depending on how the brothers wanted to divvy themselves up when the older brothers were there. No one died.



Savings and financial stability are more important than privacy - especially for a 4 year old.
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Old 01-26-2020, 11:18 AM
 
Location: Kalamalka Lake, B.C.
3,073 posts, read 4,254,576 times
Reputation: 3984
Having owned a moving company everyone thinks with a lifestyle disruption it's going to be 'a few months. No, it's going to be a year. I'd offer to base your child out of your place. Interestingly, in my jurisdiction fathers must provide a bedroom for the child. The mother "gets a pass". I'd check out what exactly the laws and procedures are, make a gentle offer, and if you're blown off, start keeping a file. A four year old is too young and too exposed with those adult "numbers"........
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Old 01-26-2020, 11:29 AM
 
Location: Brentwood, Tennessee
48,514 posts, read 46,777,539 times
Reputation: 95010
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnotherTouchOfWhimsy View Post

It's purely cultural that we expect small children to sleep alone in their own bedrooms. In much of the world, they sleep with their parents.
Neither that nor the idea that this is a "middle-class problem" is really relevant here.

The ex has said she could get her own place if she wanted to. Her parents have a history of enabling her. This isn't a storybook "babywearing" scenario by any means.


Quote:
Originally Posted by kitkatbar View Post

But the issue here is... there's no way to know this is only going to last for a few months.
Exactly.

Jared needs to become more proactive as a parent, rather than merely going along with whatever this family dictates to him. That's the bottom line.
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Old 01-26-2020, 11:33 AM
 
Location: Canada
9,574 posts, read 8,969,584 times
Reputation: 21153
Quote:
Originally Posted by BirdieBelle View Post
Exactly.

Otherwise it's just going to be more years of venting but no real decisive action.
Yes, and this is a problem.

There are all kinds of resources out there for dads, they can go to a lawyer just as easily as a mom can. But they don't, and they complain when a situation is decided for them without their input. Don't be that guy, Jared. This is about your daughter's well-being and you should be fighting for her best interests. Will you?
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Old 01-26-2020, 11:43 AM
 
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
9,834 posts, read 6,261,544 times
Reputation: 36093
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaredC View Post
I wholeheartedly agree. Most folks on here think that as long as there are walls and a roof, she’s good. It’s actually pretty bizarre how folks on here are acting like a 4 year old living on the couch, in a high traffic common room, is completely acceptable.
She’s not their child. She’s YOUR child. Your responsibility.

Why you won’t advocate for her is beyond my comprehension.
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Old 01-26-2020, 12:08 PM
 
1,454 posts, read 516,222 times
Reputation: 4794
Are these people drug users? When I think of a lot of people living in one house and bringing boyfriends/girlfriends home to live I immediately think druggies.
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