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Thread: Babies and still my baby no matter HOW old he thinks he is - question

  1. Senior Member
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    Babies and still my baby no matter HOW old he thinks he is - question

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    I have an 8month old with my DF and a 7 year old from a previous marriage. I'm not so much worried about the baby, I realize it will be an adjustment for him once DF comes home and he may be shy around him at first. DF knows this too, and we have talked about it extensively and I really think he'll bounce back so that's not really my question...

    My 7 year old thinks my DF hung the moon. He is CRAZY about him!! The problem is that my exhusband treats our 7 year old like shit and the 7 year old never wants to go with him for weekend visitations. I honestly think if I had the right kind of money, he never have anything to do with my son again. It's a different life at his dad's house. His dad screams and yells all the time, never plays with him, makes promises he never comes through with... stuff like that. Hell, I had to get a court order so that he could play sports for crying out loud.

    My 7 year old is really struggling with my DF being gone. He misses him so much and loves him like like a father. We are always writing him letters or making him crafts. The other night, my son was making a family portrait to mail to him when it dawned on him that everyone in this house would soon have a different last name than him and he was distraught. I tried explaining that growing up, I was also the only person with my last name and that I understood totally. I tried to tell him that something so silly as a last name didn't make him any less family than the rest of us.

    Has anyone else had the particular of having a step child who is missing a deployed soldier? All the camps and day outings that the FRG (which is 4 hours away from us) hosts are for children of soldiers, not step children whose parents aren't quite married yet. When I discussed this with the FRG, they said that once we're married, my son can participate. WTF? So he's out in the cold until we're married? Does anyone have any advice? Books to read? ANYTHING??? My son has been seeing a counselor since just before the deployment to help him deal with some of the issues he has with his father and with his fears of this deployment and she is appalled that the FRG is excluding him. Has anyone else had to deal with something similar to this? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
  2. ProudArmyWifeD
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    Quote Originally Posted by Onerosgirl View Post
    I have an 8month old with my DF and a 7 year old from a previous marriage. I'm not so much worried about the baby, I realize it will be an adjustment for him once DF comes home and he may be shy around him at first. DF knows this too, and we have talked about it extensively and I really think he'll bounce back so that's not really my question...

    My 7 year old thinks my DF hung the moon. He is CRAZY about him!! The problem is that my exhusband treats our 7 year old like shit and the 7 year old never wants to go with him for weekend visitations. I honestly think if I had the right kind of money, he never have anything to do with my son again. It's a different life at his dad's house. His dad screams and yells all the time, never plays with him, makes promises he never comes through with... stuff like that. Hell, I had to get a court order so that he could play sports for crying out loud.

    My 7 year old is really struggling with my DF being gone. He misses him so much and loves him like like a father. We are always writing him letters or making him crafts. The other night, my son was making a family portrait to mail to him when it dawned on him that everyone in this house would soon have a different last name than him and he was distraught. I tried explaining that growing up, I was also the only person with my last name and that I understood totally. I tried to tell him that something so silly as a last name didn't make him any less family than the rest of us.

    Has anyone else had the particular of having a step child who is missing a deployed soldier? All the camps and day outings that the FRG (which is 4 hours away from us) hosts are for children of soldiers, not step children whose parents aren't quite married yet. When I discussed this with the FRG, they said that once we're married, my son can participate. WTF? So he's out in the cold until we're married? Does anyone have any advice? Books to read? ANYTHING??? My son has been seeing a counselor since just before the deployment to help him deal with some of the issues he has with his father and with his fears of this deployment and she is appalled that the FRG is excluding him. Has anyone else had to deal with something similar to this? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Well, first, as to the bolded part: yes, until you are married your son isn't a military dependent and can't participate in FRG outings or camps. That's just regulations, I wouldn't take it so personally. WHy is his counselor "appalled" about it? It isn't that YOUR son is being excluded, its that the FRG is for dependents.

    If post is four hours away, how often would you attend these outings, anyway? Why put so much importance on them?

    As for advice, I say that its a good thing to have him counseling and instead of bitching about the FRG, the counselor should be working through his issues with him. It sounds like you at home are doing great things - the crafts and writing letters.

    Does your DF have a webcam and can he webam with your son?

    And as to the last name, would your son's father agree to having your DF adopt your son when you marry? Or do a legal name change for your son?

    Deployment is rough on kids, and I'm sorry that not being married is making it even harder. I know that must seem so unfair, but as I said, I wouldn't take it so personally. No sense in feeling "excluded" or singled out when really it just has to do with policy that makes a lot of sense in the grand scheme of things. (How could the miltiary differentiate between your son and the five kids of a girlfriend who hooked up with her soldier two weeks before deployment? Where would they draw the line?)
  3. Loving Life!
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    I agree. Until you guys get married, your son is not his stepson and therefore not a dependent. I would look to other programs outside of the military to get him involved in.

    As far as his biological father - you may have issues with him, but he's still your son's father. I don't think suggesting that your boyfriend adopt your son and terminating his father's rights would be the best thing in the long run. Your son may resent you in the future.....also, if you have no 'valid' reason for his rights to be terminated, the courts are not going to support you. Yelling and not playing with him are not reasons they generally terminate rights.

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    The FRG does have to draw the line somewhere... but having a son who is a dependent and a son who isn't?? That's just cruel. His counselor is appalled because he is a child and no one should be excluded, period. I would like to find resources for him to take advantage of, but there doesn't seem to be any. It is 4 hours away, and therefore we can't take part in most of the things they offer, which interestingly helps him not realize he's being excluded from so many things. BUT, I don't feel comfortable participating in anything when they exclude one of my sons, and not the other...so we don't.

    While my son would LOVE to be adopted by my DF, I also think that in the long run, that would be a mistake. I think that a decision only he can make in his heart. He doesn't really understand why right now, but someday I think he will.

    To be honest, I'm surprised at the lack of support for families in the military. Or correction - I should say the lack of support for "non-traditional" families in the military. The traditional family is not often the norm these days. You'd think the military would be more proactive about keeping up with the times. A peice of paper doesn't make us anymore family than we already are.
  5. ProudArmyWifeD
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    Quote Originally Posted by Onerosgirl View Post
    The FRG does have to draw the line somewhere... but having a son who is a dependent and a son who isn't?? That's just cruel. His counselor is appalled because he is a child and no one should be excluded, period. I would like to find resources for him to take advantage of, but there doesn't seem to be any. It is 4 hours away, and therefore we can't take part in most of the things they offer, which interestingly helps him not realize he's being excluded from so many things. BUT, I don't feel comfortable participating in anything when they exclude one of my sons, and not the other...so we don't.

    While my son would LOVE to be adopted by my DF, I also think that in the long run, that would be a mistake. I think that a decision only he can make in his heart. He doesn't really understand why right now, but someday I think he will.

    To be honest, I'm surprised at the lack of support for families in the military. Or correction - I should say the lack of support for "non-traditional" families in the military. The traditional family is not often the norm these days. You'd think the military would be more proactive about keeping up with the times. A peice of paper doesn't make us anymore family than we already are.
    I seriously beg to differ. To the military that piece of paper (marriage certificate) makes a very big difference.

    What you are suggesting is that people who aren't legally a military dependent be able to participate in military dependent activities. But that would mean that these activities would have to be made available to *anyone* then. Where would you draw the line?

    There's nothing cruel about it. Until you get married you and your son are not dependents.

    Think about it, by your definition (non-traditional families) any girlfriend with kids could claim to be "family" and want to take part in benefits that only a dependent should get. That's just absurd.

    And honestly, if you say you wouldn't participate because of the distance, why make it an issue in the first place? I guess I'm just confused as to what your issue really is.
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    The issue is plain. My son, who loves my DF as much as any biological father and misses him as much as any biological son would, has no resources available to him. I was asking if anyone knows of any resources that are out there that I might take advantage of for the sake of a little boy.

    Who is the military to define the word "Family?" I WOULD participate in FRG outings and events if they didn't exclude ONE member of OUR family. I am welcome, my 8 month old is welcome, but my 7 year old is not? How is that acceptable?

    The FRG could easily address the issue of "non-traditional" families by including all children who are connected to soldiers who wish to participate whether they be nieces and nephews, step children or soon to be step children, any child who is connected to a soldier and wants to or needs to participate should be allowed. These are CHILDREN, I think it is ignorant and absurd to exclude them. A piece of paper does not make a family a family.
  7. ProudArmyWifeD
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    Quote Originally Posted by Onerosgirl View Post
    The issue is plain. My son, who loves my DF as much as any biological father and misses him as much as any biological son would, has no resources available to him. I was asking if anyone knows of any resources that are out there that I might take advantage of for the sake of a little boy.

    Who is the military to define the word "Family?" I WOULD participate in FRG outings and events if they didn't exclude ONE member of OUR family. I am welcome, my 8 month old is welcome, but my 7 year old is not? How is that acceptable?

    The FRG could easily address the issue of "non-traditional" families by including all children who are connected to soldiers who wish to participate whether they be nieces and nephews, step children or soon to be step children, any child who is connected to a soldier and wants to or needs to participate should be allowed. These are CHILDREN, I think it is ignorant and absurd to exclude them. A piece of paper does not make a family a family.
    Okay, I guess we'll just agree to disagree otherwise we'll just go around and around. But expecting the military to cater to people (children or not) who are not legally a dependent is well, ignorant, to use your word. How you can take it to an emotional level and say that because they are children they deserve the rules to be bent, is beyond me.

    What outings and events are you referring to, by the way? That would help make things more clear as to what "resources" you say aren't being made available to your son. I mean, if you are talking about a trip or camp that is offered to dependents, then it is paid for by the government. Why should the government be expected to pay for any child who is remotely close to a soldier (nieces, nephews, future stepchildren, etc.) to participate? And for the record, legal stepchildren ARE considered dependents.

    Once you get married, your son will be a legal dependent and all resources will be available to him, just like they will then be available to you. At this time, I believe the only reason why you have any access to FRG activities is as the mother of a dependent child.

    What sort of resources are you looking for?

    I think the biggest thing you can do for your son is to talk about how he feels, and keep communication open between your fiance and your son, so that they remain close while he is deployed.
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    I agree. I understand where she is coming from. As a mother it must be hard to see one of your son's being included and the other excluded, and I can understand that it is probably really frusterating trying to find ways for your son to cope... But ProudArmyWifeD is right, the military is a government institution, a marriage certificate DOES define a family, and without it you are not considered a dependent and do not have any rights to military benefits. So, it DOES make sense that one child is included and the other excluded, because legally he is not a stepchild. Why don't you guys get married so that this issue will just be resolved? It sounds like you guys are planning on it....it just doesn't make sense to expect to benefit from the military if you really have no legal ties to a service member. It would be crazy if everyone got support from the military..."nieces, nephews, etc etc...". You have to understand that this is a legal issue, not a personal one....If the military were to include everyone then how would legal military families feel?? Just get married and you won't have a problem.
  9. Doin' It All On My Own...
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    My sister was married to the worst man in the world. He cheated on her with a 16 year old when they were married so she divorced him taking my 2 year old nephew away from him. She met my now brother in law a few months later and they have been married ever sense and have 3 kids, so a total of 4. Timmy, the nephew from the first marriage went through the same thing. He wanted to have there last name but his father wouldn't sign him over. Eventually my brother in law talked to the school and although its his biological name, he goes by my brother in laws last name now.

    I agree that he is no less part of the family having a different last name, but my nephew went through a hard part of life when he realized how different he truly was. He wanted to belong and he felt as if he didn't. I don't know if I have helped at all I am just sharing my families story with you. Know that its common and with a lot of reassurance he will come along.

    To help a child not miss daddy so much, I think it would be a great idea to let him make a video to send daddy. He could write the script and you him and the baby could act it out on a video then send it via DVD to him? Just a thought. That way he will feel important cause he wrote the script and its all for dad so he will feel like he is kinda with him.
  10. IYAOYAS
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    I understand the OP's feelings but as sad as it is sometimes unless you have the paper that says you are married or the child is his this is the way it will be. It's just part of military life.
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