DEAR ABBY: My husband, "Hans," and I have decided not to allow our two children to visit their grandparents' home while my sister-in-law, "Becky," is living there. The reason for our decision is that Becky molested Hans for about four years while they were kids.
Becky has kids of her own now and has said some things that are questionable. We feel our children would be better off without her in their lives, just to be safe. Hans' parents do not know what happened. He simply told them he has "good reason" for not allowing his children over, and not much else was said.
My problem is, my in-laws are blaming ME for the children not going over there, and now refuse to visit with us at our house. Hans' mother barely speaks to him anymore. They live only 15 minutes away and both are under 50 and in good health. Were we wrong in our decision? Do you think Hans should tell his parents why we don't visit? As with many cases of sexual abuse, Becky convinced Hans that no one would believe him if he "told," and unfortunately, that thought has stuck with him. -- DESPERATE TO MEND THE FAMILY
DEAR DESPERATE: You made the right decision in keeping your children away from Becky, but you made a mistake in not telling the grandparents exactly why. They should immediately be told the truth -- if only so they can make sure that the children under their roof now have not been molested. And if you have any reason to believe they would turn a blind eye to it, you should share your concerns with Child Protective Services.