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View Full Version : I need a dad's POV



Greenwolf103
03-28-2008, 12:23 PM
You believe that your wife has been brainwashed by a money-hungry psychic who's out to harm your 3-year-old daughter. The tension escalates to violence in the home and, even though you DID NOT intend any violence, it happened during an argument. Meanwhile, you're trying to awaken your month-old son, who isn't responding.

Now said psychic is in the house. Said psychic revives baby. And informs Mom and Dad their little girl is missing. (In the excitement with the baby not waking up, nobody checked on her.)

Do you:

1) Say "well, geez, we need to go look for her!" and do so.

2) Say "no, she's sleeping in her room" and refuse to believe otherwise until you go in the room to check for yourself.

3) Focus inward, so ravaged by guilt you can't really respond to very much else anybody is saying.

4) Call the cops (despite just having been violent to wife) and report an "intruder" in the home and suspect the psychic has kidnapped daughter.

5) Other?

What would you dads out there do?

I know, it's mostly depending on the kind of person my character is, but I still want to know what any SENSIBLE and LOGICAL father would do.
(P.S. My character is a skeptic and doesn't believe in psychics.)

bubbagringo
03-28-2008, 03:24 PM
a combo of #1 and #5

it would be more like "You're coming with me." (to psychic) to go look for her

by the hair if necessary...

Mr Flibble
03-28-2008, 03:28 PM
I posed this to the Old Man. He said, pretty much all of them

Guilty, suspicious of the psychic, panicky about the baby ( we've actually had the revive scenario here, believe me panic is a mild word for it) panic for the daughter 'OMG let's go look for her now'. He'd make sure the psychic didn't leave his sight though.

Basically he'd be all over the shop.

yappo
03-28-2008, 03:30 PM
This father of an almost three year old daughter would pick 5) other.

I'd make certain the rest of the story was about a brainbashed psychic who most certainly got harmed by a 42 year old psychotic father, who even though he intended the violence to last for much longer, sadly had to accept that you can only mutilate and kill someone once.

Basically: don't mess with parents and their kids if you expect reactions that are in any way rational.

I have a background in computer systems administration, so it REALLY doesn't get much more sensible and boring than that :D

Sten

JJ Cooper
03-28-2008, 03:53 PM
Firstly, I would never hit my wife. So this point of view takes that out of the equation.

Let's just say the psychic gets in the house and revives the one month old. I am forever grateful, so that would make the next point interesting. How could I believe she would be involved in the 3 year olds going missing in the first instance if she just saved my newborns life.

So, tell the wife to call cops - yet know she couldn't in the hysteria (happened before with an ambulance situation for my baby). So grab the phone and start searching. Wife would be outside knocking on every door. I'd stick to the house because of the baby. Once I'd starting thinking it through, I would start to think psychic was involved. If I read her body language that she was, I'd hold her by the throat against a wall until she told me where my child was. This would be resolved before the cops turned up.

JJ

StoryG27
03-28-2008, 04:04 PM
I'm not a father (obviously) but I think the scenario is impossible for some people to put themselves in. A lot of husbands out there would NOT be violent to their wives, no matter what. Now if the wife was hurt in some sort of accident, i.e.: she was ticked off, hubby was yelling, she wanted to get away, ran down stairs and tripped, or some such incident, maybe that could be more empathetic for a lot of guys.

And I my sister has had to revive a child and I have had to search for a missing one, and I can tell you what little I've learned is that you never know how you're going to react unless it actually happens. I think in this situation, my husband would immediately call the police and not let the psychic leave his sight as he searched for the daughter, but he wouldn't have any reason not to call them because he wouldn't be violent toward me.

Charlie Horse
03-28-2008, 05:28 PM
Wow, I found myself in that exact situation once. You know what I did?

1. Kicked the psychic's ass until he told me where my daughter was. Then I killed him.
2. Apologized to my wife profusely before she kicked me out of the house.
3. Went to a bar, got drunk, then picked a fight with a guy who was obviously much bigger and stronger. Got my ass kicked.
4. Passed out on the sidewalk outside the bar. Woke up in jail.
5. Spent the next 10 years working outside the law trying to get my life back by helping innocent victims of senseless violence through vigilantiism.
6. Finally found a 12-step program and a good psychotherapist/women's rights advocate who eventually became my best friend.
7. Found out my psychotherapist/best friend was in love with my ex-wife.
8. Realized my ex-wife was much happier with my best friend.
9. Joined a monastary.

Now I make excellent chesse.

zornhau
03-28-2008, 05:37 PM
You believe that your wife has been brainwashed by a money-hungry psychic who's out to harm your 3-year-old daughter. The tension escalates to violence in the home and, even though you DID NOT intend any violence, it happened during an argument. Meanwhile, you're trying to awaken your month-old son, who isn't responding.

Now said psychic is in the house. Said psychic revives baby. And informs Mom and Dad their little girl is missing. (In the excitement with the baby not waking up, nobody checked on her.)

Do you:

1) Say "well, geez, we need to go look for her!" and do so.

2) Say "no, she's sleeping in her room" and refuse to believe otherwise until you go in the room to check for yourself.

3) Focus inward, so ravaged by guilt you can't really respond to very much else anybody is saying.

4) Call the cops (despite just having been violent to wife) and report an "intruder" in the home and suspect the psychic has kidnapped daughter.

5) Other?

What would you dads out there do?

I know, it's mostly depending on the kind of person my character is, but I still want to know what any SENSIBLE and LOGICAL father would do.
(P.S. My character is a skeptic and doesn't believe in psychics.)

I am a dad.

I would not have let things get this far. If they had, I would not give a damn about bein arrested since my first duty is to my children.

So, in the circumstances and high-running emotions you describe, I would grab the 'psychic', frog march her to the daughter's room. If my little girl is missing, I (1) tell my wife to phone the police, and (2) while they are on the way, beat the #### out of the psychic until she tells me where my little girl is.

Priene
03-28-2008, 06:36 PM
I'm going with 5) other too.

I'd never hit my wife. And I'd never get tired slapping the psychic who tried to mess with my family.

czjaba
03-28-2008, 06:53 PM
I'm not a dad, but I am a mom. If I was a skeptic, I'd choose #2. But then again, I'm not a panicky person, and neither is Hubby. We both generally try to maintain sanity until there is a reason not to.

RJK
03-28-2008, 08:15 PM
Threaten my children and you are playing with my sanity switch; harm them and you have flipped it. Assuming the father has strong suspicions that the psychic is the perpetrator, I would verify that the child is missing, and choke the answer out of the psychic. A good lawyer would get me off.

Greenwolf103
03-28-2008, 08:29 PM
This has been really helpful!! Though I'm kinda scared of dads right now.... :scared:

Thanks so much. In the story, the psychic DOES know where the little girl is. And the dad's striking the wife is mostly from the wife being hysterical over baby and freaking out thanks to "brainwashing" and going all nuts over what's happened to him (in her way of thinking). The dad is trying to revive the baby while at the same time handling wife who's flown off the handle. Thus why he didn't mean to strike her. It just happened in all the chaos.

dirtsider
03-28-2008, 08:53 PM
Here's my take as a single woman with no kids on this situation.

1. Given the noise and excitement going on between the fighting and the infant, the three year old would most likely be freaking out one way or another. Most likely screaming his/her head off in fear and confusion at all the noise, etc. Chances are, the moment the 3 y/o starts crying/screaming, that's going to be heard by the parents and probably thrown into the fight. "Oh, look, you made the baby cry!"

The moment that crying stops, someone's likely to notice. Or if one spouse is working on trying to save the infant, the other one is probably trying to calm down the 3 y/o.

2. Given that the father is already suspicious of the psychic, the moment that psychic shows up at the house, s/he is probably not going to be anywhere near those kids. He probably is thinking that the psychic is the cause of the infant's collapse in the first place. First words out of the father's mouth are probably going to be, "Why are you here and what did you do to my kid?" Doesn't matter if the psychic is the cause or not - the father will blame him/her.

If the father turns around and finds the psychic in the house without being let in by him, the adrenaline from the fight and fright will kick in and a beating will ensue. The father is already pumped up from arguing with his wife and trying to save his child's life. A good lawyer will call it temporary insanity or at least self-defense. Most likely he'll get the father off because the father has previous concern over this psychic.

3. Given the parents are trying to save the baby, one of them is calling or already calling 911. That's gotten pretty ingrained in the US culture now, after so many years. Or since there are children in the house, it's already programed into the phone. Since an infant is involved, chances are the medics are already on their way or already there.

On one hand, things are going to be a mad-house between the fight and the medics. So the psychic could possibly make it into the house to get close enough to revive the infant. On the the other hand, the medics and/or police (who are likely to have also arrived given the noise/information the responders hear on the phone) are going to be one more obstacle for the psychic. The moment anyone hears the psychic say the 3 y/o is missing, that psychic is going to be the first suspect, no matter what. Especially since the father will probably have a restraining order placed against the psychic. That restraining order would have been slapped on the psychic the first chance the father would have gotten. Particularly with the father's suspicions regarding the psychic trying to harm a 3 y/o.

matt_the_cook
03-28-2008, 09:07 PM
I have a three-year-old now and I can just picture it. Even though I consider myself a logical person I think I'd snap inwardly. First my entire world would fall apart. After a moment I'd get a hold of myself and completely take charge of the situation, refusing to let anyone else deal with it because I wouldn't be able to trust them. I'd target that psychic for sure.

Charlie Horse
03-28-2008, 09:11 PM
Here's my take as a single woman with no kids on this situation.

Ahhh...a well qualified opinion.


(Not that we don't value your input.)

dirtsider
03-28-2008, 09:21 PM
Ahhh...a well qualified opinion.


(Not that we don't value your input.)


Absolutely!! :tongue Why do you think I put that qualification in there? :D

Wyatt
03-28-2008, 09:28 PM
I would beat the psychic for fun. Get a bull horn and yell for my daughter, then tell my wife I was sorry.

I definitely would not call the police. I would find a way to cleverly push the psychic out of my life, regardless of his motivations.

Also, I would try to get my wife on my side again.

Priene
03-28-2008, 09:37 PM
Actually, I've been in a situation a little similar to this. One evening when my daughter was about three and my wife was out, my daughter almost stopped breathing. She started making a hideous noise like she was being strangled. I called 999 but by the time the ambulance arrived, she was breathing normally again. It turned out to be croup (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Croup), which can kill.

At the time it was happening, I was just horrifically scared and felt like bursting out crying. Not sure what I would have done to a malign psychic, though.

Williebee
03-28-2008, 09:44 PM
As a dad, of a daughter:

Start with 2. Move quickly to 1, 4 (that's what cell phones are for.) and 5.
Drag psychic along with me. If unable to do that, make sure psychic is in no condition to leave before the cops get there (about 3 minutes at my house. The plastic zip ties in the drawer by the sink ought to do it.)

5 involves pain and misdirection after I find out that psychic girl/guy knows where my kid is. And for getting my boy away from Mom (yeah, I know more apologizing will be involved later.)

I'll have time for 3 later, and I'm sure I'll spend a lot of time there, even if I get my kid back.

Williebee
03-28-2008, 09:46 PM
Priene? 999? where are you? Hope all is well with your daughter now.

Unfocused Me
03-28-2008, 10:37 PM
As a married father of two, I have to line up with the other dads. I can't imagine ever hitting my wife, period, however chaotic the situation got - you might want to think that bit over, if you want to keep reader sympathy for the guy. Any violence would be directed at the "psychic." First things first, though, I hit the panic button on the alarm system, then do whatever's necessary to keep the "psychic" around and talkative.

We keep our zip ties in the utility closet. They might be hard to get to in a crisis. Have to think about that.

Death Wizard
03-28-2008, 11:09 PM
Assuming all your points are inalterable, I would go with No. 4.

Death Wizard
03-28-2008, 11:10 PM
Wow, I found myself in that exact situation once. You know what I did?

1. Kicked the psychic's ass until he told me where my daughter was. Then I killed him.
2. Apologized to my wife profusely before she kicked me out of the house.
3. Went to a bar, got drunk, then picked a fight with a guy who was obviously much bigger and stronger. Got my ass kicked.
4. Passed out on the sidewalk outside the bar. Woke up in jail.
5. Spent the next 10 years working outside the law trying to get my life back by helping innocent victims of senseless violence through vigilantiism.
6. Finally found a 12-step program and a good psychotherapist/women's rights advocate who eventually became my best friend.
7. Found out my psychotherapist/best friend was in love with my ex-wife.
8. Realized my ex-wife was much happier with my best friend.
9. Joined a monastary.

Now I make excellent chesse.

Hysterical!

yappo
03-28-2008, 11:37 PM
Hmm, should one feel proud, sad or frightened by the single-minded response here? ;) Asked by one of a mind as seen above...

Sten

Priene
03-29-2008, 12:53 AM
Priene? 999? where are you? Hope all is well with your daughter now.

Norfolk, England. She's fine. Croup's an infection of the throat that mainly affects toddlers. If the inflammation is too bad, they stop breathing. Scared the wits out of me. I've been in car crashes that were less scary...

zornhau
03-29-2008, 01:03 AM
This has been really helpful!! Though I'm kinda scared of dads right now.... :scared:


Good.

Seriously, the parent-child bond is intense. We have many many generations of Darwinian selection in favour of extremely violent responses to threats to our children. I suspect that I'm not the only dad on this thread who felt a surge of adrenalin on reading your post.

Might I suggest that you make your psychic physically dangerous? Otherwise this scene is going to be rather nasty and short.

Shadow_Ferret
03-29-2008, 01:41 AM
LIke many other respondants to this little question, I never would have hit my wife so I would have been able to call the police.

But it's a combination of all of them. Starting with checking her room to make sure. Then I'd call the POlice. THen I'd kick the psychic's ass (although it they really are psychic, then they can see this coming). Then I'd go look for my daughter with the psychic strapped to the bicycle rack on the car.

GJB
03-29-2008, 08:42 AM
I'm a dad of two, have looked in on one of my sons to find him beyond sleep and face covered with vomit, not knowing if dead or alive.

Firt things first. Decide whether Dan is a good, great, sorta ok, lousy, wretched fellow. Only a lousy or wretched hubby would hit his over-the-edge wife. Lots of other ways to calm her--hold her, let her vent, get her to call 911 for an ambulance, get her to pick up the bably, pray with her, have her Google for medical advice about baby, have her call the emergency contact for their health plan...and so on.

If pops is halfway decent, he'd for sure call the cops once baby is ok. If he's Chuck Norris, he'd high kick psychic on the nose so as to drive the nose bones to within a fraction of an inch of her brain and make psychic fess up about daughter even before the cops arrive, then tell them, "Thanks, so much for responding. Got it under control, found our little darling here." While psychic is tied up and gagged behind the sofa. If he's a normal dad, he'd call the neighbors and start a neighborhood search and not let psycho psychic out of his site or sight, either one.

If pops is a lout, he'd freak out along with his wife, but maybe one of them would have enough sense to call 911 before they both turned to quivering bowls of mush and guilt and let psychic worm in deeper. You need a hero somewhere pretty quick, though.

Ain't it fun to play god in this story. Good luck with it. g.

yappo
03-29-2008, 12:03 PM
THen I'd kick the psychic's ass (although it they really are psychic, then they can see this coming).

Do you REALLY think they need to be psychic to see it coming? :D

Sten

jannawrites
03-30-2008, 12:37 AM
I feel confident enough to answer on behalf of misterwrites, the daddy of my 5- and 2-year-olds.

He's a practical, jump to action type of guy. (Guilt over an escalation would come later, after things had calmed down.) If I understand the scenario correctly, he'd first check the 3 year-old since, chances are, the psychic couldn't flee in the few seconds it would take. (If, by chance, the psychic did run, he'd chase him/her down and restrain him/her as necessary.) Whether or not the daughter was truly missing, misterwrites would call 911. Emergency would be dispatched to report the missing daughter, if that's the outcome he's found OR tell police an unwanted guest has invaded his home with the intention of harming his family AND insure there was no immediate reason for concern over the infant's health.

Good luck! :)

Dulvarian_Eldritch
03-30-2008, 09:19 AM
Ok, I'm going to stand up on the line with the other dads, for the most part.

I'm military, and have been well versed in pretty much all basic first aid (I've also trained on what to do for kids since I have three of them, but that was on my own). Panicking is not something I do.

I might have slapped my wife to get her to stop freaking out. Believe it or not, a decent slap will usually get someone to "snap out of it" and be helpful. At the very least, they will usually listen when I tell them to shut the hell up and sit in the corner after that. A good command voice does just fine for me, so I don't think it would be an issue. Never had a kid stop breathing. Had one running a 106 fever though when she was four months old, and yeah, I was really worried. I had the kid a tub telling my wife what to do, asking about five hundred questions. Foot and mouth disease from the $600 a month day care.

Hrm, back to original question.
911 from the cell phone in my pocket, on speaker, while I gave artificial ventilation and telling my wife to gather things as I required, blankets, water, medicine, whatever I decided I needed, and to pack the 3 year old up with enough stuff to stay overnite at the hospital if was had to because I would be driving about three feet behind the ambulance (I'd let the wife ride with the paramedics) with the three year old safely strapped in. And yes, the run-on was intentional. The older kid now missing while wife is trying to get stuff ready and psychic shows up...

I think I would add everything up as... you must be guilty, Psychic Bad Guy Character.

The psychic in the house would find my .45 about six inches in front of their eyes. (Yes, CCW). I don't think I would need to ask more than once either. The barrel of a .45 hand gun looks like it is big enough to crawl into from that close. Your eyes cross a little because it is really hard to not focus on that HUGE barrel. And if I thought I needed to start shooting, well, my Glock holds 13 rounds in the magazine. Don't mess with a real man's kids. We might not all show it, but men can be viciously protective of our pretty little girls. I don't think I can imagine anything, and I mean literally anything, that I would not step in front of for one of my children. There is less than anything that could stop me from going after my children either.

On a side note, you should ask what lengths moms would go to protect their children from harm. A normal mother would I believe go pretty savage, brain washed or not, over their child in possible danger. My wife wakes up when my kids breathe too loud. Missing? I think she would go into hero-mommy mode and start kicking ass all by herself. That was the thing that really stood out to me in the original scenario. Mommy not being mommy seemed totally out of character, even for most of the really terrible mothers that I have known. Dealing with some of the young moms I see, that's pretty bad.

Greenwolf103
04-03-2008, 11:10 AM
Thank you!!! :D Very helpful feedback on this.

And I should add:

I really don't want readers to have sympathy for the dad. Up until then, the guy is a lousy husband (drinking, cheating on his wife, isolating her and pretty much talking down to her) up until this point. (She leaves him at story's end.)

So this has helped me to figure out how to fix the scene all of this takes place in.



On a side note, you should ask what lengths moms would go to protect their children from harm.

I don't think that really needs to be asked. ;) Seriously, I just saw a movie where this dad discovers his 5-year-old daughter was beaten and scratched by his ex-wife (he sees bruises, etc.), and he CALMLY goes to where the ex-wife is staying to say she's lost visitation rights. I was sitting there thinking, "Wow, I admire his restraint. I'd go ape**** if somebody did that to MY little girl!"

StephanieFox
04-04-2008, 01:52 AM
I'd so #2, then if she were not there, I'd go look for her (maybe she got out of bed and is hiding in the bathroom/closet/under the bed/on the porch/ in the backyard.

If she wasn't around, I'd call the cops.

I think you want to make sure that the violence with the wife is purely an accident and in no way caused by his anger. Otherwise, he's never going to get sympathy.