Gossip, or not (personal debate)
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Thread: Gossip, or not (personal debate)

  1. #1
    Prolific Poster ftmom's Avatar
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    Default Gossip, or not (personal debate)

    OK, this is a little personal, but is something I have been struggling with all weekend so I thought I would ask you ladies, especially since it is slow here anyways. Feel free to take off on tangents if you want to.

    The situation:
    The other day a friend of mine informed me that her daughter didn't have swim practice because her swim coach (male) is going through a divorce and some 'accusations' have been made by his ex, which made it so that he cant be around young children at this time. ( Not sure exactly what the accusations were as kids have been around every time this was discussed, but it obviously has to do with some inappropriate sexual contact with kids.) Coach had come to her house the night before to explain the situation, and she claimed that these accusations were ridiculous, and really unfortunate, and only hurt the children. Apparently the wife left him for another man about 4 months ago and left the kids with him, and then the day before their court appearance she went into the police station and made these accusations. I know though, because their daughter is in the same preschool class as my son, that mom was at least taking them to school some days, so she wasn't absent from their lives those 4 months. The woman who I heard this from's daughter has been driven to practice alone by the coach on at least one occasion. I know this from previous conversations.

    A few days later I mentioned this situation in passing to my husband (the cop), because he had met the couple on a previous occasion and commented on what a nice couple they seemed to be. His response when I described the situation was ' hey, I know about this case!' from work. According to him, this is not the first time 'coach' has been accused of the same thing, and that he was refusing to take a polygraph test. DH made a point of saying that none of that means he is guilty, but most people who are innocent will just take the test to make it all go away. It is......suspicious that he wont take the test.

    So I have two questions:
    1. (personal) Should I tell the original mother (who's daughter has been alone with him) the other information I have found out? She seems very convinced that it has all been made up by the ex wife, but I feel like I am gossiping if I tell her. I dont want to put these things out there, especially if he is innocent of everything, I would feel horrible if I turned people against him, but I feel like she should know since she is throwing all her support behind him.
    2. (not personal) How would you react if you found out information like this about someone who had been alone with your child? This mothers reaction baffles me as I would try to remain much more neutral so that my child would feel safe telling me if something had happened. Even now, I feel like when it comes to sex offenses, you kind of need to prove your innocence before I would ever let my kids around you again.


    Anyways, not sure how much of a debate this will be, but I could use some advice. Thanks.
    Kyla
    Mom to Arianna (5), Conner (3) and Trent (my baby)

  2. #2
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    I understand your dilemma. First, what kinds of rules does your DH have about confidentiality? My DH is an interpreter, and if he were to share any information he learned through work he would loose his certification. I would not share any information that you were not allowed to.

    DH is a deacon at our church. Over the years he has found out about different people that have been accused of molesting children. As a father, he has always told me even though the information is supposed to be confidential. I can see on one hand it could really harm someone's reputation to be falsely accused. On the other hand, I have three precious children that it is my job to protect. As I said in the other debate, as parents it is our responsibility to only leave our children with people we trust. Outside of family, I would not leave my girls alone with most men. In most situations, there needs to be at least two adults nearby.
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    ~Bonita~

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    I agree that I'm surprised that your husband could share that information with you, and would ABSOLUTELY check with him about the legality of you passing on that information to the other mother. I would be shocked if you would legally be permitted to tell her something like that as it doesn't seem like information that you should have been privy to in the first place?

    I wouldn't freak out if someone who had been accused of something had driven my child somewhere once or twice. I would not immediately assume that my child had been molested, that seems pretty irrational. I talk to my kids and try to keep open lines of communication. Of course if someone was actively being investigated/was not allowed to be around children I would never let my children be around them, thats a given

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    Yes...keep hubby's info to yourself, at least for now, I don't think that was info meant for sharing.

    Being accused is one thing but I find it odd that the mother left her kids there with someone she knew to be molesting children. Who would do that? Would I trust that statement? Even if she was involved somehow there is no way I would leave my kids with DH if I had even a thought that he was molesting my children or others.
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    Community Host Sapphire Sunsets's Avatar
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    In a word. YES. Tell her. Trust me on this.

    holy hell, i'm going to make this even more personal. What I am saying is not up for debate. I'm tellling what happened to me and how i dealt with it.

    My ex (Zach's father) has a daugther, she was 2 when we met. Months after we broke up (3 yrs down the road) we were on the phone one night and he admitted to me that he had a fanasty about this little girl he'd seen where his parents lived that reminded him of his daugther. Yes, it got very graphic. No, i'm not repeating it here.

    Now, fast forward 3-5 yrs. We speak pretty much once a yr (on Zach's angel annvi) and it always goes to his ex (the mother, who i remained friends with) and the daugther. Ok, so he tells me that the mother has refused all visitation for her. Because of abuse accusations. I thought about it for a few months. I did tell the mother. Given what i knew, not saying anything wasn't an option. I had been in this girl's life for 3 yrs, I felt that responsiblity and knew that if something had or was going to happen and i did nothing about it....i would have been crushed.


    Do not tell her you heard anything about it from your husband.

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    Posting Addict ange84's Avatar
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    Your husband could get into a lot of trouble if it is passed on. I work in a field with strict confidentiality provisions. I had hubby ring me at work yesterday and tell me about a situation in his bosses extended family and asked if I knew anything. I said I couldn't tell him even if I did.

    Because of my field of work I know lots about various people, not all good either, so I can see myself in the same position one day, but I just continue to state I have no idea and can't say anything even if I knew about it.

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    Prolific Poster ftmom's Avatar
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    Good point about asking DH. He is usually pretty good about not telling me things I shouldnt know.....or going 'crap, dont say anything about that' if he accidentally tells me something, so I assumed it would be OK to pass on. I should confirm that thought. I think because this isnt his case it might be OK, it was more like water cooler talk he was passing on. He didnt even know the guys name until I told him.
    Kyla
    Mom to Arianna (5), Conner (3) and Trent (my baby)

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    I would think that the fact that he had had other allegations against him (which he must have been found innocent of?) MIGHT be able to be considered water cooler talk (as I guess if there were actual charges filed before that must be a matter of public record? At least, it would be in America, I think?) but the polygraph bit seems like information that ONLY a police officer would know if this is an active investigation and this guy has NOT been taken to trial or proven guilty. I'd be really shocked if you could pass along insider information like that.

  9. #9
    Prolific Poster ftmom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Potter75 View Post
    I agree that I'm surprised that your husband could share that information with you, and would ABSOLUTELY check with him about the legality of you passing on that information to the other mother. I would be shocked if you would legally be permitted to tell her something like that as it doesn't seem like information that you should have been privy to in the first place?

    I wouldn't freak out if someone who had been accused of something had driven my child somewhere once or twice. I would not immediately assume that my child had been molested, that seems pretty irrational. I talk to my kids and try to keep open lines of communication. Of course if someone was actively being investigated/was not allowed to be around children I would never let my children be around them, thats a given
    I wouldnt assume that my child had been molested either, in fact I am pretty sure this girl has not been. But the mother did mention the driving to practice alone, because it made her uncomfortable (there was an assumption his daughter would be there, and then she wasnt), so it seems odd to me that after this accusation she has thrown herself completely in his court, insisting that he is innocent of everything. My thought on this is IF something had occurred with any child she is close too, they would not be comfortable telling her, with the thought that she wouldn't believe them, because she has been SO clear on not believing he could do it. I dont see running screaming from him, but I would personally take a more neutral stance, especially around my daughter.
    Kyla
    Mom to Arianna (5), Conner (3) and Trent (my baby)

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    Yes, I agree with that. I wouldn't be on either "side", especially vocally, as in these sorts of things one never has all of the details, and I certainly wouldn't be talking about it in front of my kids!!! Totally with you there.

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