View Full Version : How do I tell my daughter her Dad is a murderer??


JAXON2124
01-20-2004, 02:27 PM
My daughter's father has been in & out of prison for last 10 years. He and I only dated briefly when we were kids. I left him when my daughter was about a year old. It wasn't until she was about 8 yrs old that I explained to her about her biological Dad. I tracked him down as she wanted to meet him. It turned out he was still locked up. I agreed to bring her to the prison to meet him, he had about a year left to go. We visited him maybe 3 or 4 times in that year, he explained to her that he had done some bad things and was paying his debt to society and promised to not get in anymore trouble when released. Well, after 9 months after his release he murdered the mother of his other child. It has been 2 years since he got locked up again. He now will be serving a 60 year sentence..... my daughter has asked why he doesn't call or inquire about her.....I finally told her he "got in trouble" again but said I didn't know why. I am dreading the day I have to tell her what he did and to who he did it to. I am also scared about her finding out from someone else. How will this affect her?? How do I tell her?? PLEASE HELP!!

Valerie
01-20-2004, 07:33 PM
Hi Jaxon and welcome to PTO. that's really a tuff situation to be in and I'm sorry I can't really give any advice except maybe seek help from a professional. I'm sure someone will come along with words of wisdom.I hope it goes well.....Valerie

brat12121
01-28-2004, 04:25 PM
My mother is in jail for murdering her husband so basically it is the same situation reversed. The best way to tell her is to be honest. I was lied to so many times it hurt me a lot more in the end. I feel that now I have learned a lot and I would probably tell her something like... You're father has been found guilty of a harsh crime. Then explain to her what happened. She's going to cry and she's going to have questions you won't be able to answer. Make sure you are prepared to tell her that there are some things that can't be explained but, anything you can, you will. This is one of the most difficult situations to put some one through. That's the advice I would give seeing the circumstances I went through.

angelica916
01-28-2004, 09:27 PM
Though I have never been in you sitituation I would say be honest with her. If she found out the truth later she might not trust you any more.

Judge Not
01-28-2004, 10:11 PM
I can't imagine the anxiety you're going through right now, that's a tough one...

I have to agree with brat on this one... I think that kids can handle the truth regardless of what it is, but it's hard to forgive when you've been lied to...

I was talking with a friend the other day about how I would tell this guy that keeps asking me out that I would never nor could I ever have those kinds of feelings for him... She simply told me to tell him the truth... it's that simple... The truth will set you free... She was so right... It's almost too easy :-)...

When my dad was in prison; it didn't really matter to me what he did or didn't do... I just needed to know that he still loved me and that he wanted me in his life... I didn't ask for all of the details...

Maybe don't volunteer specific information, but just tell her small things if she asks...

Good luck to you...

lilmomma
03-25-2004, 04:20 PM
Hi there...I am the mother of a 4 year boy whose father is serving a life snetence for murder and IO completely understand how you feel. his father and I are still best friends to t his day. So, I have had the opportunity to ask him his opinion on the situation. We have decided that it would be best to wait until I feel he is at a mature enough stage in his life in order to understand. My son knows that his daddy lives in jail and I have used the situation as a teaching opportunity. For now, I tell my son that his daddy is in jail because he had a gun and when my son gets older I will explain to him what happened. My situation is different because it was a self defense thing but nevertheless, explaining something like that to a child is a very difficult task in itself. But I do believe that honsety is going to be the best route for me. I feel like my child will respect us more for telling him the truth rather than leaving him in the dark.

BryansGirl
08-30-2004, 09:54 PM
My daugthers father Bryan murdered his dad when he was 16 he has been in and out of prison all of his adult life. My daugther is only 6 months old but I am wondering for future reference if I should tell her when she is older. I want to be honest with her but at the same time I don't want her to think bad of her dad.

Retired-10
08-30-2004, 10:01 PM
I'd work hand in hand with a counselor. Easing your child into this is the only way to do it. Hey may be a murderer in your eyes, but he's her father in hers. I can't imagine what she might feel when she finds out.

MaryLuvsNico
08-31-2004, 12:03 AM
i am also in the same situation. My daughters father is locked up for murder. She was 2 when he got locked up and was never really a part of her life anyway cause we wernt together. But we had been together from the time i was 16 and i had her when i was 22. We are great friends, her father and I. I have always told her, " your dad was hanging out with people who were up to no good and didnt listen to his mother and got into trouble" I never told her exactly what he did yet but now she is getting older and I dont want someone else to tell her. She is 9 now and its been on my mind more and more. I am a single parent and she is my only daughter. We have a very close relationship. She has visited her dad when he was at county and DVI but now that he is at PBSP she has only been once since it is so far from us. He writes to both of us and she loves him to death. Sometimes I wonder how she is so close with him when he wasnt around when she was young. But anyways, Im not sure what I will say and when. I dont want her to get a bad self image knowing that her father committed a bad crime. I would also welcome any thoughts.

dad_a_lifer
08-31-2004, 09:01 AM
How old is she now? 10? And she knows he's been in trouble before so it would not be a shock to her that he' in jail at all.It's better it comes from you and not some classmate or neighbor. I was lied to almost my entire life and it made me feel like a jerk.
You should tell her the truth. Just the facts about what he did then follow her lead. Answer any questions she may have.
Her biggest problem now may be her fear of her father. She may be afraid that he'll kill her or you. Try and make her feel secure that her father loves her and would never hurt her.
Let her know that what he does is in no way a reflection of her and that she is a wonderful person. Her father made some bad choices and is paying now.
Good luck!

shanihw
08-31-2004, 09:14 AM
You know your daughtere better than anyone. You should tell her as long as she is old enough and mature enough to understand what happened. I also think seeking professional help will help her and you deal with her feelings. But its better if she hears it from you rather than someone else.

JAXON2124
01-25-2007, 01:21 PM
Well I started this thread 3 years ago....my daughter will be 16 years old in a few weeks and I have finally deceided to tell her. Thanks to those who gave advice. I am so scared as to how this information is going to affect her, but since she is getting older now I am more concerned with her finding out from someone else. I will post back afterwards and offer any advice to someone else who maybe in a similiar situtation.

jlsjr4ever
01-25-2007, 02:15 PM
my brother is in prison for murder and i know how very hard it is to be faced with telling kids about there loved ones.....ive been faced with it as well....due to my slack sis-in-law not being the mother she should be. they came to me asking me questions. and basically the way we started talking about it was i let them start the convo and i would answer each and every question they had. and once i answered it they had another and we have been open his children are 7 and 11. they know daddy done wrong but hes still there daddy. and yes they are in counselling 3 times a month to make sure there are no other issues that arise from this. but most of all let her know thats shes loved by him. if not things can get worse than needed. if you have any questions please do send me a message ill reply to you ......

angela

tatersalad
01-25-2007, 02:21 PM
WOW
My hats off to you to
I think 16 is a good age you made a wise choice in waiting
I can assume you have taken the time ( 3 years wow ) to figure out all the things to say and imagine quite a few questions she would come up with
I think I'd make some hot chocolate get some brownies put on Pj's and make a cozy chat , couldn't hurt to get real comfy and cozy first right ?

good luck to you and don't worry too much if she is anywhere near as intelligent as you seem to be she'll be good

I wouldn't want her to hear about something like that from anyone "outside" either

MrsPhil
01-25-2007, 02:28 PM
My daughter's father has been in & out of prison for last 10 years. He and I only dated briefly when we were kids. I left him when my daughter was about a year old. It wasn't until she was about 8 yrs old that I explained to her about her biological Dad. I tracked him down as she wanted to meet him. It turned out he was still locked up. I agreed to bring her to the prison to meet him, he had about a year left to go. We visited him maybe 3 or 4 times in that year, he explained to her that he had done some bad things and was paying his debt to society and promised to not get in anymore trouble when released. Well, after 9 months after his release he murdered the mother of his other child. It has been 2 years since he got locked up again. He now will be serving a 60 year sentence..... my daughter has asked why he doesn't call or inquire about her.....I finally told her he "got in trouble" again but said I didn't know why. I am dreading the day I have to tell her what he did and to who he did it to. I am also scared about her finding out from someone else. How will this affect her?? How do I tell her?? PLEASE HELP!!
About 20 years ago my son in law was drinking and driving a car in which the passenger was killed. The passenger has his head out the window and his head hit a tree. Long story short the family does not blame my son in law but they live in a small town. This was before he married my daughter. so when my grandaughter was small I asked them when they were going to tell her. They said when the time is right. Well 2 years ago when she was 14 the time still wasn't right I guess but someone in her school told her about it. She was devastated to say the least. When she is old enough to understand tell her before a stranger does! Kids are more resiliant than we think!

LongHaul
01-25-2007, 02:52 PM
Perhaps I am too honest, I told my then 10 year old daughter what her dad did. It wasn't murder, and my husband had 3 years to do. I felt at the time (and still do today) that my daughter is very mature for her age, and really doesn't "internalize" issues. I think every mom out here knows what our children can and can not handle, without too much thought. It might be more of a matter of how exactly to form the words, and of course the dreaded anticipation of a horrible reaction.

I have found in life that the anticipation is ALWAYS worse then what actually transpires.

Please though, reassure your daughter that she is safe, and that you are safe, and that her father, even though absent from her life now, really loves her and always will. (even if it isn't totally true) Teenage girls are very sensitive to how their fathers feel about them, and much of "how they will manage their love relationships" in life are formed at this age. Even though her dad did a bad thing, he is still capable of loving her, and he is equally as deserving of her RESPECT and love, just because he is her dad.

LadyMusicSoul3
01-27-2007, 06:06 AM
My son is still a little one (he'll be 2 on Monday), and has only met his daddy a handful of times. His father is now in prison again. For what, I don't know, he hasn't told me. I will eventually tell my son all that i know about his father. If he's in for a serious offense now, I'll tell my son that too, when he's old enough, or when he asks. If I get married soon enough (not betting on it), the questions may come later, but either way I'll have to tell him the truth. I'm worried about how it will affect my son, especially if I'm still a single mother, and with him being so willfull and all. BTW, manslaughter is a past offense of his, and that'll be part of what my son learns. Maybe I can get his father to tell him all of this himself.

OSOLADY
01-27-2007, 07:22 AM
ONE WAY OR ANOTHER THIS WELL BE BIG ON HER, BUT IT'S BEST IF YOU TELL HER AND TELL HER THE TRUTH, AND IF SHE STILL HAS QUESTION HAVE HER WRITE A LETTER TO HER DAD, BY WHAT YOU SAY ABOUT HIM HE WON'T WRITE BACK AND SHE WILL STOP LOOKING FOR HIM.....MERCEDES:cool: GOOD LUCK!!!!

van'sgirl
01-28-2007, 07:26 PM
How are things going? I just joined PTO, was checking on a thread I had posted and saw yours. If you haven't dealt with this situation yet, I would offer this advice: I would be honest, because I feel that kids are very resilliant and can deal with more than we give them credit for. However, you might give her one or two ways to express her feelings. She is definately going to feel shocked and disappointed among other things. Counseling might be helpful, as well as a personal journal or diary that she can look back on and see how far she has come in the healing process down the road.
If I can be of any help, please let me know. Let us know how the progress is going. Thanks.:)

Van'sgirl

Kandee
01-29-2007, 05:15 PM
My prayers are with you and the situation.

FranksFrackBoy
02-11-2007, 10:36 PM
I think that in addition to telling him/her the truth, you should also make sure they know that whatever their dad did is absolutely in no way their fault.