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Suspicious that SIL is molesting my granddaughter

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Junior Member
What is the name of your state? PA

I will try to give us much information as I can, but I'm not sure what's relavant, so please don't think me too wordy.

I am the mother of three daughters. My middle daughter got involved with the wrong boy at a very young age. He was demanding, and controlling from the beginning. Her father and I did everything that we could to keep her away, but immediately upon reaching her 18th birthday (and while still a Jr. in HS), she announced that she was pregnant, and was getting married. Legally we could do nothing. We have had, since then, a rather rocky relationship. Though things have been good for the past couple of years. My SIL and I rarely speak to one another.

Since then they have married, and now have had 2 children. I am very close with all of my children, and especially with my oldest granddaughter. I spend a lot of time with her, she's 5 years old. Her father continues to be very controlling, and doesn't seem to have a close relationship with her, as he's very clear that he prefers boys. My husband, and both of my other two daughters have witnessed time and time again that he lavishes attention on their other child (a son), and all but ignores their older daughter, except to discipline her. She does not hug her dad, and ignores him whenever possible. She cries when he comes anywhere near her. My daughter often points out that the reason why he is like this is because he was sexually abused as a child by his brother. She has spoken to all of us about getting a divorce. She's afraid to leave, and says that he threatens to kill her.

We are all very afraid for her. But we realize that until she's really ready to take the first steps in leaving there is nothing that we can do. Her sisters and I make conscious choices to be supportive, and act as resources for her if and when she needs it, without pushing her.

Anyway..fast forward to today. I was sitting on the computer, and my granddaughter was over. I've had her for the past few days, as her mother wasn't feeling well. My 5 year old granddaughter out of nowhere, walked up to me and said "MiMi, my daddy spanks me right here." And she pointed to her genital area." I said, "no honey, he spanks you right here, right," and pointed to her butt. And she repeated no, "he hurts me right here."

I really had no response, and didn't know what to say. I just hugged her.

Then I remembered that a few weeks ago, she unexplainedly started peeing her pants. All of the time, night and day. Her mother and father disciplined her for it, and my daughter took her to the pediatrician. It turned out that she had a bladder infection. I am a teacher, and I know that bladder infections are often an early indication of sexual abuse. I also know that people who molest children were quite often victims of abuse themselves. I am very troubled by what my granddaughter said, she's a very mature little girl, and is not one to lie.

I have made many referrals to CPS over the years in my line of work, and also with my ministry work in our local church. They are NOT anonymous. With every referral that I've ever made, the person always found out that it was I who called. I am sure that if I call, and file a report, that my daughter and SIL are going to know that it was me. By my words alone (and without evidence), I am sure that my daughter is going to blame me. She is very controlled by her husband. She's not been 'allowed' to get a job, or to get her driver's liscence. She's a stay at home mom, and is rather secluded from everyone else, aside from our immediate family. I am quite sure that if I talk to my daughter, she's going to tell her husband, and it will be the last and final time that I ever see my granddaugher again. If abuse is taking place no one will ever know because he'll spirit them away. If they find that abuse didn't occur, or can't prove it, my relationship with my daughter, and her two children will be completely gone. I don't know what he's capable of. My daughter wasn't raised to be this way, he's had a very strong hold on her for her entire adult life. She's now 23.

One of my close friends is a Dr. She suggested that I take my granddaughter to a rather large hospital out of town, and have the Dr. give her a slight anesthesia so that she can be checked for sexual trauma. She said that it can be done with children, when a close family member suspects this kind of thing. Legally, I don't know if I have that authority or not. I suspect that I do not.

I could really use some advice here. This is the kind of thing that can tear a family apart. Please do not remind me that I am a mandated reporter. I know this. But after many, many years of seeing how the system works, I am undoubtably sure that it will let me down in this case. I have seen child after child, over the years, come into school bruised and battered, over medicated, and afraid of their own shadow, and have made referral after referral, only to be given BS excuses for why nothing is done. I do not want to see this happen to my granddaughter. I need to know if I can legally take her to be checked without her parents knowing it? TI need to know what I can do, if anything to protect her. Thank you for your help in advance.

I believe you can take the granddaughter to the hospital and get her checked out. its the right thing to do really. If you find out that she was sexually abused the doctors should know how to report it. If they dont know how to report it file a report with the police immediatly upon leaving the hospital with a copy of the doctors report that she was abused. Also give the police the statement about what she said about the spanking. I think that having your daughter get an immediate divorce is the best thing to do...this controling thing has to stop. If you can, get her out of the house and get her an apointment with the bmv for a drivers liscence. If he is threatening to kill her have her file for a restraining order once she is divorced. If he is arrested for the abuse thing it makes it a lot easier for her to get out of the situation since he wont be around.


Junior Member
Do you think your daughter is too brainwashed by this guy to put her daughter first and take the situation seriously? If you talked to your daughter then you wouldn't have to take your granddaughter to a hospital without her permission. I understand your worries about never seeing your granddaughter or daughter again, but if you don't act on this you will blame yourself for the rest of your life. This is much worse than a suspicious bruise. Men that do this kind of thing should be shot.

I am so sorry you are put in this situation. I would talk to my daughter first, if I thought she was in her right mind to believe me.


Junior Member
Doing nothing about this isn't an option. I'm just trying to figure out what my best options are to protect my granddaughter. I know that something right isn't going on, but I can't prove it. This is a nightmare.

My SIL really hates me, and has since day 1 tried to isolate me from my daughter. It works, but only to a point. She needs me too much. Her husband works long hours, and I'm her means of transportation, plus her constant babysitter. I don't mind, because it means that I have a great and loving relationship with both of my kids. I think that if I am the one to bring it up with her, that she'll think that I somehow coerced GD to say it. As sick as that is. She'll think that I have an agenda, because she knows that I don't care for, and never have cared for her husband (though I don't say anything negative about him now that they're adults and grown, but its pretty obvious). I'm hoping that one of my other daughters will be here, and one of them can talk to GD. I know that my middle daughter will take it a lot better, if she hears it from one of them. Thank you so much for your support.


Junior Member
Good Luck, I will say a prayer for you and your granddaughter. Please take her to a doctor.

May God Bless You.


Senior Member
Is she starting school this year?

I'd teach her about good touch, bad touch. Let her know that if things are happening that involve bad touches, she should tell a teacher, counselor, principal etc. This way, you are not reporting and it gives an unbiased, mandated reporter the ability to make the call.


Junior Member
Thanks so much for the advice everyone. She is starting kindergarden this year. School doesn't start for another two weeks, and that seems like a long time to wait. This is just a horrible nightmare.


Senior Member
Take your daughter to a hospital, the one in her community so they have ready access to the medical records, you don't need permission to report sexual abuse. Don't ask her a lot of questions so as not to influence her answers.

Call the hospital ahead of time and explain the situation and how she came unsolicited with the report and when, also the medical history. They will advise how to proceed. If you need an excuse fo a reason for taking her, it could be because of school starting soon.

Even though you are a mandated reporter, remember she is not one of your students and the rules insofar as confidentiality of mandated reporters is different. You could also call the police and ask how to proceed.

Please update us.


Junior Member
Thanks everyone for your advice. I will definitely keep you updated. Thanks especially Rmet, I see that you're a senior member, and I really value your advice. I will try to get her to the Dr's ASAP.

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