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brooksea

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We have a situation that has come up with my husband's nieces. To make a long story as short as possible:

Their father was an alcoholic. He divorced, wife went to prison, he gave up his parental rights. They've been adopted, now the adoptive father is in jail. In the meantime birth father died. Kids now live with the adoptive mother, who is a worthless ............

My husband's family picks the girls up anytime there is a major family function. The last time was for my husband's birthday. My husband is very hard to understand and needs me to interpret a lot of what he says. Well, the 12 year old niece takes it upon herself to tell my son that his daddy is a drunk!

It really is heartbreaking to think of what these girls have been through, but I don't want them to think that their uncle is just like their daddy was. I cannot believe that no one has taken the time to explain that their uncle has a disease that effects his speech, etc...He is their favorite uncle and has always done everything he could for those girls.

Should I call the worthless adoptive Mom and explain ALS and ask her to talk to her girls or take this upon myself the next time I see the girls? I'm leaning towards to latter. That way I know it would be done for sure and I can explain it in a way they would understand.

Any thoughts?

Oh- And I had to explain everything about daddy's brother to our son and show him the difference between a "drunk" and a loving father!
 

Flowerpot

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hi Jimercat

I would suggest that you tell the children all together , then you can explain to all 3 what is going on with your husband . It would also bring an opportunity for the children to share their worries and for you to offer reassurance to them all.

I don't know how old the children are but could you get leaflets that are specific explanations for children ?

I think you and your family sound lovely so well done for wanting to do something about this.

Kind regards

Flowerpot
 

crystalkk

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CJ,

I agree about explaining it to them your self next time you are with them.
 

BethU

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I agree with the others, CJ ... it's probably best that you explain it to the kids, because it doesn't sound like their adopted mother would know what's she's talking about. In fact, she may have put the idea in her kids' heads about your husband.

Good luck.
 

Charys

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Yes, definitely explain it yourself, as you will be more sensitive to the needs of your husband and the children. You will know how much to say depending on the age of the children and what they can cope with, it will be good to have everything out in the open and at least you know that you have told them proper facts and truths. My daughter (10) went to the hospital with my Dad today, the pulminary clinic for a check-up on his ventilator. She took it all in her stride ! Good luck.
 

CindyM

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Hi CJ! Nice to hear from you again. I agree that these kind of situations can become "teachable moments" for both your own child and his cousins. It is better they learn from you, since you are a good parent and more knowledgeable. Let us know how this situation works out! All my best, Cindy
 

JACKIEMAX

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Extended Family Horrors.....

Hi Jimmercat And Others,

As Some Of You Know, Horace Lost His Battle With Als Dec. 3, Just A Few
Weeks Ago. He Suffered Sooooo Much At The End, And Was Begging God
To Come Take Him Home. I Married Into His Family 8 Years Ago, And His Oldest
Daughter And Sister Were Here At The End. Believe Me, I Had To Bite My Tongue
Many Many Times During His Last Few Days To Try And Keep Peace For His Sake.
They Did Not Want Him To Even Have Any Morphine..... So, My Point Is This; No
One Is Going To Take Your Husband's Part Other Than You, So Yes, Sit Those
Children Down Asap And Explain What Is Going On With Your Precious Husband. Neither Of You Need Any More Negative Things Going On During This
Time.

I Thank All Of You For Your Love And Support During The Three Years Horace
Suffered This Monstrous Disease.

Jackiemax
 

brooksea

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Thank you all for your support! Christmas Eve will be here and I don't know if the "Queen Bee" SIL will be picking the nieces up or not to participate in the in-laws celebration.

Believe me, I will take the opportunity to educate the girls. Thing is, I don't think the adults understand either!

Hubby has a beer and he is wasted. Hey wait! He was already wasted...slurring your words, OMG! How much did you drink before you got here?
 

Al

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Hi CJ. Sorry about your troubles. You can pick your friends but family is just there sometimes whether you like it or not. Don't know if you saw it but in the General Discussion forum at the top of the thread page is a sticky about a new ALS Canada website for kids and young adults. You might be able to get some tips there. Hope it helps.

AL.
 

jennyhoff

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Kids and ALS

Hi there,
I was diagnosed 2 and 1/2 years ago, and have found that children, once included in the reality of ALS, deal with it almost with more sensitivity, compassion, acceptance and grace than many adults. I have welcomed many kids in my neighborhood to be part of my care team. I also volunteer 1 day a week at the local school in the 4th grade class-and I love the way kids deal with ALS. In the beginning, I was afraid it would be too much., but proved to be the opposite. They now plan and present mini fundraisers.
Now dealing with family may be a bit more delicate, and I realize that what works for me may not for everyone, but I think in general they appreciate and rise to the occasion of being included. I wish the best for you and your husband too.
:Here is an short video interview the paper did on the kids and I, I am very proud of my "kids"!

http://www.spokesmanreview.com/blogs/video/archive.asp?postID=400
 

Al

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Thanks Jenny. That was a really nice video. Welcome to our little piece of the internet.

AL.
 

trying to stay positive

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Hi Jenny,
Welcome. That is a wonderful video and just fantastic what you are doing with the kids. Everyone benefits and I think you're right, in that these are life lessons that will stay with them. Way to go!
 

CindyM

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My brother and I were at my Mom's AZ unit awhile back when the electrician came in to fix something. He had his young son-about 10 or 11, in tow.

My brother was surprised, tellimg me that he was not sure patients like Mom were appropriate for young eyes. I said I applaud the father's decision. Kids need to know human beings come in all flavors!
 
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