Apr 13, 2009

I'm NOT Judgemental, I'm PERFECT!

....or possibly the EXACT opposite, and I am ashamed to have to admit it.

I unfortunately have watched the news, with all it's stories of death and horror. I've watched as they spin a story of a parent who left their child unattended in the car while they went inside to buy Lotto tickets. They careless parent had left the door unlocked and running as they stayed for countless minutes chatting it up with the cashier about the latest score of the last Piston's game. Not only moments later was the child kidnapped and taken off to a sweat shop and worked for pennies on the hour while being starved to death. All the while painting the parent as the most negligent, unloving human being on earth.I'd stand up and spout about how horrible that parent was. How could they neglect that poor innocent child! I'd judge and I'd slander that parent, sure that I would never do ANYTHING like that.

Actually the story probably went more like this...The parent had a sleeping child in the car, a child who hadn't slept in days and they couldn't bare to wake them up. The parent had pumped the gas and unfortunately only had cash on them. (Maybe they had lost the credit card, maybe their credit wasn't good enough for them to have a credit card, regardless, it happens) They knew they'd only be in there for two seconds, so they took a chance. It was a sweltering hot day, so instead of suffocating the child, they rolled down the window a bit. They grabbed the keys, locked the doors, ran inside and realized they didn't have exact change. They kept glancing up at the car every few seconds while searching through their pockets, but SOMEHOW, the kidnapper got their arm through that open window, unlocked the door, and hot wired the car, driving off with the innocent child. Leaving the parent in RUINS! Their child was missing and their heart was in pieces.

But did the media care what the real story was? Did they bother to get the fact straight that the child was actually 9, an ideal age to begin leaving a child alone in the car, and not 5 as they had spun the story? The child LOOKED 5 in the pictures. Did they bother to talk to anyone who knew how the kidnapper got away with the car? They drove the car away, so the parent MUST have left the keys in the ignition. All the little facts, spun into a web of untruths. And there I sat, feeling no respect or sympathy for the parent who MUST have neglected this child.

Well my friends, this is something I will never do again. I now realize how cruel and inaccurate the media can be. After the death of my friends child, I have come to be shocked and sickened by how the media can spin a story. I am disgusted by how other people, people who know nothing of the truth, can slander and judge and comment on how horrible and negligent my friend MUST have been to let this horrific accident happen to their child.

These poor parents, who have just lost their son forever, who were forced to pick out his very last set of clothing ever, who will never again hold their child in their arms, have not as much as been given a chance to mourn and or make funeral arrangements. They are not able to go home and collect their thoughts, as their home is swarmed with news vans and press. How heartless people can be.

How often have I left my child playing in their bedroom, gone to the bathroom, and came back only to find them sifting through the refrigerator. My own parents had put me down for nap, gone to the kitchen to start the dishes, and received a knock on the door only moments later from the neighbor who had found me playing in the middle of the street. We are human. We are parents. We are FAR from perfect. This could have happened to anyone, even twice! We have to keep in mind there are more circumstances behind the scenes than what the news has to offer. Even the small details, such as "only having cash" can happen to all of us, but still end up to be such a HUGE factor in something so dreadful.

So my request of you guys today is this. Don't believe everything you hear on the news! Don't judge a situation without knowing the characters involved. My heart is aching for my friend and her family. If anything, please find yourself just a tad less judgmental today. I know I have!


Mommy (That's my name, don't wear it out.) said...

What a sad story... and you are right, parents aren't perfect. I think you send a good message to everyone when it comes to passing judgment. Thanks for the post!

JM81 said...

I still remember when I was a child, at around 4 years old. I was supposed to be napping, but instead found pleasure in jumping on my bed. Until I decided that it sounded like a great idea to jump off of the bed onto my (I thought) soft, fuzzy rug. A broken arm and a trip to the hospital followed. I still remember crying as the doctor and nurse asked me over and over again what my mom had done to me, how she had hurt me, though I told them it was just me. Was my mother supposed to watch me as I napped, never taking her eyes off me for a moment?

People can be cruel, and are especially good at passing judgment on others.

Ringing in my head, over and over again today was "So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her."

T. Anne said...

Thank you. This is an important perspective to have. Esp. with today's manipulative media. Still praying comfort for your friends family.

Marybeth said...

Thanks. I feel bad writing such a negative blog, but I felt so strongly after reading so many negative comments. It feels nice to know I'm not the only one who feels it's hard to be a perfect parent!

Jenny Penny said...

It's not a negative blog at all. It's positive. You believe in the general decency and goodwill of most parents. And you are defending, rightfully, a good friend who's in pain. Good on ya.

Jessica said...

I read their profile at Caring Bridge and it's pretty obvious that they're a loving family, not negligent at all. This is SO very sad.
I know how easy it is for kids to get hurt. My one son had a seizure because I didn't realize he'd spiked a fever and had an ear infection. My other son was running in the living room and busted his eye open and had to get stitches.
Thank you for this post! I've been judgmental too and this is a good reminder for me to cut it out.
I'm so sorry about your friend's situation right now. :-(

Crystal said...

Mary, I couldn't ask for a better friend! I love you so much, and thank you for your love, prayers, and support.