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My ex thinks my son stole his stepbrothers nintendo switch?

 
 
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 10:21 am
Personally I don’t think I should because it seems like a violation of privacy to me, but I want some unbiased opinions. So here’s the rest of the relevant information.

I have a son with an ex. He’s 12 years old. My ex got married after we broke up to a guy that had a kid. His kid is now 11. They also had a kid together and who is 8 years old.

So my son and his stepbrother don’t always get along. Recently his stepbrothers Nintendo switch went missing. He has accused my son of stealing it and hiding it as my son really liked his since it was a limited edition Zelda one and my son’s is just a regular one. My ex has said that she and her husband have searched their entire house for it and could not find it. She believes that our son snuck it over to my house and has it hidden in his room here. This is certainly possible as I don’t go randomly rummaging through his backpack or his room.

That’s said I just don’t believe he he stole the Nintendo switch. For one my son has his own Nintendo Switch that he’s still playing. It is just his regular one with the blue and red joycons. The thing that most makes me believe him is that he said he didn’t take it and too be honest my son is an extremely shitty liar. His voice and whole body get very shaky when he tries too, so its very obvious when he’s lying. When I asked him about it he looked fine, not even a little shaky. I find it unlikely he was able to so masterfully overcome his tell overnight. My ex however is insisting he is lying.

My ex is demanding to look in our sons room at my house. I have refused to let her and now she’s saying I should then and that by not doing it I am interfering with her parenting when we’re supposed to have a united front.

Still I think it’s a violation of my son’s trust and privacy to go through his room when the only evidence against him is his stepbrother saying he took it.

My ex has said that until I search through his room or let her she will be taking my sons switch whenever he is with her and giving it to her stepson and our son won’t be allowed to play it at all while he’s there. My son is upset by this obviously and now is refusing to bring his switch back over to his mom. Which I get since he can’t play it at all. My ex says he can’t do that, but really its my decision since I paid for the switch. However my ex did pay for the majority of the games on the switch. Also there’s an issue because some of the games she paid for are not just my sons, but his half sister’s as she doesn’t have her own switch. She trades off playing on my son’s switch and on her other half brothers switch depending on who is there.

Anyway my main questions are should I or shouldn’t I search my sons room for his stepbrothers stolen Nintendo switch? Should I keep my son's switch at my house from now on?
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Type: Question • Score: 9 • Views: 901 • Replies: 19
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Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 10:36 am
@bbscorpion,
Why don't you ask your son if you can search his room. Let him know you trust him and would not do this behind his back. Explain that this will ease everyone and hopefully make things easier at his mom's house.

If he doesn't have anything to hide then he would probably just say yeah go ahead.

When my daughter was a teen and I had reasons to worry foe her safety ..I told her I would like to look at your phone periodically. She gave me her password and I told her I would not get upset at things like cursing and so forth but it was because I was worried about her. The agreement was I could and not my husband as I am more even tempered ...so she trusted that arrangement and my husband trusted my judgement.

So it sounds to me like you searching his room with him knowing might be all at ease.
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 10:40 am
@bbscorpion,
I think you're going to get some different opinions on this one. He's 12 and twelve year olds do stupid stuff sometimes but I can't see stealing a Switch when you already have one. Honestly, I could see the brothers getting into an argument and your son hiding his Switch to be vindictive before I could see him stealing it. Special editions just aren't all that special. There are times you will need to exert parental override, but I don't this this is one of them unless your son has a history of stealing stuff and that doesn't seem to be the case. It is probably worthwhile asking your son if he knows anything about its whereabouts but I wouldn't go further and I wouldn't let him take his Switch there in the future.
bbscorpion
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 10:55 am
@Linkat,
He's already made it clear he doesn't want anyone going through his room . When I was a kid I wouldn't have wanted anyone going through my room either and not for any particular reason, so I get it. I just didn't want my privacy violated. I see how it makes sense from your perspective since you say you had reason to worry for her safety, but that doesn't really apply here.
bbscorpion
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 10:58 am
@engineer,
He's never stolen anything. I really think he would be too nervous too.

I'll ask if he know anything else about it.
0 Replies
 
neptuneblue
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 10:58 am
@bbscorpion,
I hear what he's saying... BUT...

It's my house, Gus. And I'll search your room, clothing, phone and any other place if I deem it necessary.

And I think in this situation, it's necessary. Even if it's your own peace of mind. You don't owe the x anything, tell her to pound salt. But yes, I want to know if the Switch is in my house. If it isn't, then all is good.

But if it is...

Well...
bbscorpion
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 11:11 am
@neptuneblue,
My mind is perfectly at peace about my son being innocent.

The way you have phrased it has helped realized how very messed up it would be to do so. Just reading those words. Man that's sounds so ******* messed up. I am not going to be that kind of parent. Not like her. Thanks I think I got all need from here. Really thanks.
0 Replies
 
bbscorpion
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 11:18 am
@bbscorpion,
The replies here along with something my son told me have given me a big epiphany about my ex. I think I have to have a big conversation with her about how she is and treats our son or change our custody arrangement and am ashamed that I never really realized it before. This probably isn't the best place for this. Thank you for for replies. If you're new please don't feel like you have to reply as I will probably not be reading it. Unfortunately it isn't letting me delete thing for some reason, so I apologize that its still here. I'll try later to see if it will let me. May just be because I have a bad connection here at work.
CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 01:06 pm
@bbscorpion,
For what it's worth, I agree with you! Your Ex is accusatory towards her own son over what her stepson said without having merit for it. Since you said that he's a bad liar and you can tell by his physical demeanor if he's not telling the truth, your Ex should know that too.
Yes, try to get full custody and have perhaps only weekend visits with your Ex. Clearly her loyalties aren't with your son.
neptuneblue
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 03:55 pm
@CalamityJane,
There is no Judge that will modify a custody agreement over a dispute about a Nintendo. Let's get real here.
CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 04:24 pm
@neptuneblue,
Of course not, that would be pretty stupid. Besides, that's not what I said. It is clear that his Ex has different priorities towards her biological/stepchildren. The OP has picked up on it and will try to change it.

neptuneblue
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 06:44 pm
@CalamityJane,
CalamityJane wrote:
Besides, that's not what I said.


Oh. Because it sounds remarkedly like:

CalamityJane wrote:
Yes, try to get full custody and have perhaps only weekend visits with your Ex.
PUNKEY
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 06:46 pm
It seems your son is the “ prime suspect” for one reason or another. Has he earned that ? What would have been your son’s motive for taking the same switch he already has?

Geez - there’s a lot of people in that house - why aren’t they suspects, including the stepbrother himself.

I would not search your son’s room or let his mother either. That would give your son a worse message about his parents than the value of any games switch.

This will resolve its self - it will fall out of someone’s backpack or found in the dirty clothes bin. In 10 years someone might fess up, too.

In the meantime you might suggest that your son share his switch with his stepbrother , even lending it for a couple days a week. This might teach him some compassion for someone else.
0 Replies
 
CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 10:43 pm
@neptuneblue,
Are you really that daft? Yes, I think he should get full custody, but it has nothing to do with that nintentdo switch, it's just the result of how the boy's mother treats him.
neptuneblue
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Apr, 2022 11:26 pm
@CalamityJane,
No, Miss Jane, I am not daft. But I am curious how you think a Judge would consider modifying a parental agreement just because dear old Dad thinks his ex is an idiot. If that were the case, then our Court system would be flooded with frivolous suits, just like this one would be.

The bottom line is that this is a parental disagreement, NOT abuse of any sort. For you to think OP would obtain full custody after years of a status quo is foolish. You've read one, yes, ONE instance of the point of view from the Dad. You refuse to accept there could be a valid point here from Mom.

For those who think looking at a child's things like a bedroom, phone or belongings is an invasion of privacy, well, ok, you're right. It is. So be it.

My job as a parent is to make sure my child is safe, secure and protected. I will monitor phone and internet usage. If deemed necessary, I will look through my children's possessions. A situation has arisen where transparency is important. It's not abuse to verify Truth. I will do it in a heartbeat.

If someone accuses my child of stealing, then, yes, it IS my job to seek out the Truth, even if that means a temporary invasion of privacy. There can be many reasons why a child could/would lie, and thinking your child would never lie/steal/bully is one of the silliest things ever. Of course children do these things. So do adults.

Hurling an insult at me doesn't phase me. It's parents that refuse to acknowledge a possible problem does. Please don't be one of "those" parents, you know the ones, where their own insecurities are transferred to someone else.




CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Tue 12 Apr, 2022 02:39 pm
@neptuneblue,
You really go from one extreme to the other - there is no middle ground for you, I can see that now.

To calm you down, my kid is an adult now and she used to lie like hell and was very good at it too. Although I did not have any stepfamilies involved, I knew that my kid was a handful, she did not steal though - ever! She never crossed that line and I would have believed her, just like OP dad is believing his son.

The crux is that his own mother believes the stepson over her own kid. It's a clear he said/he said situation and it's clear that mom accuses her bio son. Since he is a child of divorce and has a stepfamily, she should be more sensitive towards him.

A judge will not grant custody to one parent for one incident - that's absurd, but if dad detects a pattern here where his son's mother is subconsciously punishing the boy for the divorce or dad's behaviour - who knows - but if there is a legitimate pattern of favoritism, neglect etc. then the father should at least try to get sole custody. As a parent, I would do so too!
neptuneblue
 
  1  
Reply Tue 12 Apr, 2022 04:08 pm
@CalamityJane,
Thank you for showing your lack of knowledge with the Family Court system. Again, what you are describing is a parental style difference. This couple has had a parenting agreement for at least nine years and no mention of neglect has come up. OP is pissed but filing for sole custody is not the way to go.

In order to move from a shared custody agreement to sole custody, the Petitioner has to prove: a Change of Venue must occur to remove the child from the Plaintiff's residence due to continued harmful or abusive situations AND a Change of Circumstance to be substantial to terminating the other parent legal and physical rights to the child.

This isn't child's play here. Courts don't take it lightly when two grown adults use the Court as a means to jab at each other. At best, a GAL will be hired to investigate both living arrangements for the child. Since OP would be the Petitioner, it's his sole cost to bare, usually three visits total, one at each home then an undisclosed place with only the children. At worst, OP could lose existing parenting time.

And in the end, he will lose.

Again, don't use the Court system to air grievances about an x.

CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Tue 12 Apr, 2022 09:16 pm
@neptuneblue,
I yield to your vast knowledge of the US family court system.

The boy will be 14 years old in 2 years and can decide on his own where
he wants to live.
neptuneblue
 
  1  
Reply Wed 13 Apr, 2022 12:02 am
@CalamityJane,
Heavy sigh.

I wish you'd just stop. There's a difference between having an expressed opinion and spewing misinformation that has potentially illegal actions.

NO, a 14 yr old cannot just arbitrarily decide to reside with another parent. It takes a Petitioner to the Court to prove a Material Benefit to the child in order to change a legal residence. Most commonly, that's a change to an educational experience, usually for an academic or sports related benefit that will allow a child to have increased opportunities he/she would not ordinarily have access to in the current situation.

Even with an Open Enrollment situation with the current school, a school district will REQUIRE a Court Order in order to change a legal residence. School districts have legal and financial filings they must adhere to in order to receive federal/state/local funding. It IS a big deal.

Again, the best course of action for the OP is to prove the missing Switch is not located in his home. Making peace with the x is way more beneficial than opening a can of worms involving the Court system.

0 Replies
 
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Wed 13 Apr, 2022 10:13 am
@bbscorpion,
bbscorpion wrote:

My ex has said that until I search through his room or let her she will be taking my sons switch whenever he is with her and giving it to her stepson and our son won’t be allowed to play it at all while he’s there. My son is upset by this obviously and now is refusing to bring his switch back over to his mom. Which I get since he can’t play it at all. My ex says he can’t do that, but really its my decision since I paid for the switch. However my ex did pay for the majority of the games on the switch. Also there’s an issue because some of the games she paid for are not just my sons, but his half sister’s as she doesn’t have her own switch. She trades off playing on my son’s switch and on her other half brothers switch depending on who is there.


Buy them some baseballs, mitts and bats and take all these switches away, for Pete's sake.

bbscorpion wrote:

Anyway my main questions are should I or shouldn’t I search my sons room for his stepbrothers stolen Nintendo switch? Should I keep my son's switch at my house from now on?


Do what feels comfortable and right for you and your son. How uncomfortable it must be for your son to go over there now when everyone believes he's a thief and a liar. That would be my main concern.

And yes, I would keep his switch at your house. They've found him guilty (rightly or wrongly) but her solution, while clever, is not the right answer. She must feel 100% that he stole or hid it. I'd like to know what she based that on, but since you've said you're not coming back, I'll never know.
0 Replies
 
 

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