Saturday, 29 March 2008

WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD???

For those of you who are used to me waxing lyrical about my life and being all fluffy and positive, please feel free to look away now - major rant coming up....................

OK, there have been a couple of recent news items that have upset me, shocked me and made me question where our society is heading. The first was the case of the 2 year old boy who died from a methadone overdose, his 3 year old brother and 3 MONTH old brother were both found to have methadone in their system. The second was one I read about yesterday where a man had been to court after putting his 2 month old baby daughter in the microwave for 20 seconds. Fortunately she did survive.

Now, with my tribe I have come across most of the stresses and strains that parents encounter and have found myself pushed to the brink of complete meltdown - tiredness and total frustration usually being the culprits there. My solutions have been rather less extreme. I can vividly remember putting number one son in his buggy and pushing him to my mum's house and declaring that I needed an uninterupted cup of tea before I blew. His crime was to "decorate" my bathroom with my most expensive make up for the third time. I was a single parent at the time and money was more than tight so they were precious luxuries that I had no chance of replacing......... Of course, looking back the situation was all my fault as after it had happened for the first time I should have moved the bloody stuff but that is the marvellous advantage of hindsight.

Another situation was a crying baby, who seemed to have been crying forever. This time I put offending baby in his cot, shut the bedroom door, came downstairs, closed the door to the hall, went in the kitchen and closed the door - are you picking up the common theme here!!?? So with three doors between us I made myself a cup of tea, enjoyed it, then returned to find the source of my distress fast asleep. Little bugger!

The point I am trying to make is I know looking after babies and children can be a draining, onerous experience but how the hell can peope inflict such horrific cruelty on their own flesh and blood? It is totally beyond me and whenever i hear about such cases they haunt me. Where are the parents and neighbours in these situations??? My mum smacked me very occasionally (probably can count on one hand) and I know I wasn't a particularly easy child - bet that surprises you! Now I am a parent, she indulges my children at any given opportunity and would give me hell if I didn't look after her grandchildren properly.

As for neighbours, be NOSY!! There are so many ways of reporting concerns anonymously - wouldn't you rather get it wrong than be right and have done nothing. Having been in an abusive relationship before, I am so grateful to the neighbours who called the police on hearing me cries. One even marched over to my house and gave the source of my distress such a dressing down he stood there in total shock and she didn't even reach his shoulder!

OK, think I'm done........... Normal service will be resumed forthwith!

18 comments:

Suzy said...

I think you were a fantastically wonderful and adorabable, and funny child. The same as I think of you today!

You are so right. Get concerned, stick your noses in and maybe save a child's life.

Stories in the US are the same. People are nuts and should have hot pokers jammed in their bodies, for what they do to children.

Don't you just wonder,"What the fuck they are thinking?"

Love to you and your tribe as always.

Suzy

Anonymous said...

Gosh, MMOF, I don't know how you manage to be such a scorching glamourpuss with five children.

I thought my sister was doing well to be only averagely grumpy with four kids in tow..

Must be something in the water...

softinthehead said...

Sounds very familiar, I too can remember placing my screaming baby daughter (not too gently) back in her cot, shutting several doors between us, going down stairs and turning off the baby monitor, and just sitting there stiff as a board, checking the monitor every few minutes (still screaming) waiting for my head to explode. But at I knew to do that, it never occurred to me to hurt her. I think some people are just evil. Welcome back by the way, been checking in on you.

the mother of this lot said...

Oh I'm glad you're back, rant or no rant!

Journey of Truth said...

People should rant about abuse - and do something about it! Things like that go on in the US all the damn time! I can't believe people are so full of hate that they'd ruin children. Ugh!

Daryl E said...

I read things like this in the NY papers along with the Child Protection Services standard response of 'they fell thru the crack' . .why the hell havent they closed the damn crack? Because as you said it takes reporting and neighbors and relatives as well as school teachers and doctors needs to speak up when they see or suspect a child is being abused.

WOW. Sorry to go off like that but you hit a sore spot with me. Would more stressed parents do as you did .. you didnt endanger your children .. you managed to find a way to solve your stress .. clearly you are a caring loving albeit at times stressed out parent ..

Its so nice to meet you .. thank you for coming by and for your nice comment .. I too Will Be Back!!!

CrazyCath said...

I agree with you 100%. Absolutely.

And what a wonderful neighbour you had. We sometimes just need that little bit of support to change things. Great post.

Kaycie said...

I have a hard time reading about the terrible things parents do to their children. It pains me and haunts me, usually for days.

I do believe you are absolutely right about being nosy. I did call child services once when I feared for the safety and health of the children of a girl I knew from high school. I never knew what happened . . . but at least I did what I could.

It's good to hear from you.

Swearing Mother said...

Some parents are just not up to the job unfortunately, and shouldn't have had kids in the first place. Anyone who would even consider putting a baby in a microwave has something missing from their humanity quota. I deal with quite a few "non-accidental injuries" in my line of work, and believe me MMOF, there are some seriously sick individuals out there who shouldn't be allowed to have kids.

And then there are those who just haven't got a clue, they don't mean any harm but quite often they haven't been properly cared for themselves so don't know how to care for their children. Who can help them?

You are right about it being everyone's responsibility to keep an eye out for kids in distress, or suspicious circumstances, and not be afraid to step forward if it means protecting a poor innocent child from harm. I've done it myself and don't care if I look a fool, if everything's OK then I'm happy.

Crystal Jigsaw said...

There are no manuals to tell us how to bring up our own kids, but it's just common sense to know that all they really need, deep down even when they've pushed you to your very limit, is a hug and some loving words. Not always easy but always possible.

The bastard who put his baby in the microwave ought to be electrocuted. Sorry, sounds a bit harsh I know but bring back capital punishment and it will reduce crime. On the other hand, we all know that he will be put into a mental institution where he will be assessed, fed, watered and given all the luxuries he wants until some do-gooder declares him fit for society again in about a year's time.

Rant over!
CJ xx

Maggie May said...

Well all of us have done the kind of thing that you have done. But what makes it turn into something more sinister? What is it that turns a responsible person into some one really cruel or out of control?
As regards neighbours intervening, I really thought some one might have intervened round here the other day, when 5 yr old Amber got a cactus prickle stuck in her finger. The screams were blood curdling while daddy got the prickle out. Do you know? NO ONE called to ask if she was OK.I wouldn't have minded had some one called.

She's like the wind said...

Great rant, I totally agree. The other day after 2 children trying to reach easter eggs on top of wardrobe, trampled all over nice neat piles of ironing laid on bed. I tossed the whole lot of ironing all about the room and screamed 'don't know why I bother, are you happy now the ironings a mess, hours and hours I spend looking after you, cooking, cleaning, ironing and you go and trample all over it blah BLAH BLAAHHHH' - are you getting the picture. Didn't cross my mind to lift a hand to them. I then cried all over the mess I'd made and had to refold the whole bloody lot - STUPID. xx

Mid-lifer said...

A microwave for pities sake!! I agree - even though I have done a few things I'm really not proud of when on the brink of losing it - I don't understand that level of neglect or cruelty.

I once saw a young mum through a window of a library punching her toddler in the face because he dropped his dummy. I'm ashamed to say I just stared, stunned. The awful thing was - he didn't even cry, he was obviously used to the abuse.

It is a thought provoking post.I would like to think I'd report a neighbour, but in a way I wonder how easy it would be to tell what is happening through the walls. There have been times in my house when one of my kids has had a right royal tantrum and I've been really genuinely worried that the neighbour would report us because my son went through a phase of shouting things like 'don't kill me!' or don't hurt me! (and all |I would be doing is looking irate and pointing up to his room! And even though there might have been times I really wanted to give him a whopping - I never laid a hand on him in anger so where that came from I don't know!)

the mother of this lot said...

Award over here for you from The Fixer!

menopausaloldbag (MOB) said...

I and you have been away too long! Great to read such a lively blog again.

It is a sickening world where mean psychopaths can have children and fuck them up. Cruelty exists so much and you have to wonder at just how evil these people can be.

The NSPCC ads get me weeping and that is just a tiny window to some dreadful worlds for children out there. I am a contributor to that charity but I should do more.

Great posts.

Pig in the Kitchen said...

put the baby in the microwave? I'm almost speechless and thoroughly sickened...
You make a very good point about neighbours being nosy, although i once tried to report some suspicious behaviour and was given the brush off by social services. it was 14 yrs ago tho, so hopefully things have changed.
Pigx

Manic Mother Of Five said...

Suzy you are just too kind.... And indeed I do find myself reading stories in the paper wondering at people's ability to be downright evil to each other...

Hi Anon, you can come back anytime! Thanks for the compliment.

Hi Softie, glad I'm not the only one who had "moments". Evil is indeed the word for some....

Thanks MOTL.....

Hi Journey, thanks for stopping by. It seems horror knows no geographical boundaries....

Daryl, it's hard not to rant when talking about such an emotive subject. Thanks for coming over.

Thanks Cath and she was certainly a little spitfire when I needed her.

Kaycie, good for you - no matter what the outcome at least you cared enough to do SOMETHING.

Lots of common sense as ever S/M - it's a subject we must all take responsibility for and I know you would stand up and be counted xx

Crystal, you rant all you like. It's a topic we need to rant about.

Hi Maggie......I am just learning all about my nearly 3 year old's ability to make a drama out of anything so can only imagine Amber's wails.... Ouch. Hope you used a special kiss to make it all better.


Oh Windy, I so know how you felt. It can be soooooo futile at times... Sympathetic vibes coming your way. xx

Hi Mid-lifer. The boy should be making a living on the stage if he could generate that kind of emotion from nothing!

As for a mother PUNCHING her child, bloody hell...... People never cease to amaze me....

Thanks MOB. I have to admit that sometimes I have to turn the channel over - they can make me weep buckets too. So emotive.

Hey Pig! At least you did something. Don't let others laissez-faire attitude put you off - you are in the RIGHT....

SabrinaT said...

More people need to scream from the hill tops if they think something is wrong. And, more mothers need to know it is OK to take 5, call a friend, and admit they need help.