Hello, my name is Heidi and I have two kids 11 and 12 years old. A girl and a boy. My husband (legally we aren't divorced yet) have been separated since fall of '09 after several years of him in the marines, deployment, his alcoholism, verbal mental and physical abuse of me and sometimes verbal & mental abuse of our kids. The kids have visited him out of state 2 times since we separated. First time was 3 yrs ago and they stayed w him and his long time gf for 2 weeks. The second time 2 yrs ago they stayed w them for almost 2 months when it was agreed to be 2-3 weeks. Currently, my daughter and my ex have been wanting to have a visit again before summer ends. My son wants no part. He says "dad is mean". Yes. I know he is very mean at times. My ex has been harassing me about them coming and my 11 yr old daughter is upset cuz I'm very reluctant. I don't want something happening to them and honestly, I DON'T trust him. He says he's sober but idk that is true. We were civil in the past visits but he has been doing his same old verbal and mental abuse towards me to try to get me to let them go. Both my mom and my sister (as well as other family) have seen or heard first hand his abuse and my mom and sis say I should NOT allow them to go at all. My daughter is very upset I told her dad no to the visit. I realize that even though she's mad at me that that shouldn't matter cuz she can't understand what's best for her like I know and can. What do I do? And how do I explain this to her (and her brother)? I've saved messages he's sent me as proof of his outright disrespect and verbal assaults to me. My sister has tried to talk to him also and he has done the same to her. Please let me know what I should do and how I can do it. This is very important and I'm very stressed out by it all. Any communication I have with him also just triggers my ptsd of his past abuse. I'm afraid for my son that he is triggered by talking to him and being around him also. He was young (1-4.5) in the time we lived w him but he did witness a lot of my ex's abuse towards me. Please help! Thank you in advance to anyone taking the time and effort to help me address this.