What has the world come to…

Firstly, let me announce the winner of Margaret James’s The Golden Chain. Thank you all for commenting, the winner is Liz Crump with her Romeo being Matthew McConaughey (after Gerard, of course!) Well done, Liz! Your book will be on its way to you very shortly.

Now today, I witnessed something that made me pull back in surprise and horror and made me think, what has the world come to nowadays? I know I sound like I’m an older woman when really I have only been on this earth for 24 years, but I still think that this is a moment where I can warrant saying a phrase like that. Let me explain…

LO and I was at the hospital this morning for a check up and the room we was in was at the newly built outpatients department. It was very nice and very spacious. A mother came in with her daughter and as soon as she entered the room, the daughter ran off to play with the toys and the mother continued to walk whilst pushing the pushchair, without looking where she was going, and ended up ramming into a small toddler, knocking him onto the floor and hitting his face with the  wheels of the buggy. He, understandably cried, and this lady just said sorry and walked off. She chose to sat at the furthest set of chairs away from the toys; which I found unusual as it was obvious her daughter had set up camp in this area. Where the woman had sat was hidden from view from the toys.
So after a few minutes, this little girl started walking around asking if anyone had seen her mummy. I began to stand to go and show her where she was when the mother shouted her location to the girl. I could have been anyone and I would’ve been able to walk off with this girl and the mother wouldn’t have known a thing. Obviously I wouldn’t – so please don’t anyone start panicking and sending me messages! I am just making a point that this child was not being watched by an adult.
Anyway, a short while later, this little girl had taken a liking to LO and they were playing together, obviously of a similar age. The little girl then wet herself, quite a lot and was left standing in it  for a couple of minutes. I watched and saw that the mother had not come over so I went up to her and asked if she was OK. She nodded to me but looked very distressed. So I located the mother to alert her of what had happened and she sort of huffed off and cleaned her up. I felt quite annoyed that it had taken me, a complete stranger, to alert this woman that her daughter was distressed.
After the puddle was mopped up, a yellow sign was placed on top of the area for safety – you all know the one’s! This little girl began moving the sign around and walking over the wet area. I waited and waited and the mother, again, did nothing. So it was down to me, yet again, to ask the little girl to leave the sign where it was. I wasn’t being awkward. It was wet and she, or anyone else, could’ve so easily slipped over and hurt themselves – the sign is there for a reason. So I was left to look out for the safety of someone else’s child. By this point too, they were running behind on appointments so we were half hour over the original time slot, so you can imagine I wasn’t in the best of moods anyway, especially as the car park time was ticking over and increasing the cost of my ticket, which was already a silly amount anyway.
The final straw, for me, was when this little girl was playing with the farmyard animals with LO and she turned to my daughter, whilst holding the cow, and said ‘I’m not going to kill this cow yet, I’m going to torture it first!’
I froze on my chair and my heart actually stopped for a second. LO just looked at this girl in confusion and said, ‘what?’ – she obviously, at 4, doesn’t know what the word torture means, thank goodness. I looked around and saw that a couple of other mums, who had also chosen to sit with their children whilst they played, were looking horrified at the girls comment. I didn’t know what to do and just kept hoping that she wouldn’t repeat it again to LO. The last thing I want is her asking people what that means. Luckily we were called in very shortly afterwards.

How is it, that a 4/5 year old says a phrase like that? Is it me, do children normally know things like that this young, I know LO doesn’t. And I’d be mortified if she ever said that to me, or anyone else. And as for the mother. Well, I can’t stand it when people take children to places and then sit over the other side of the room with their back to them. Do they not care what happens to them? I get anxious whenever LO is out of my sight anywhere, especially in the world that we are in today.

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13 thoughts on “What has the world come to…

  1. It sounds horrible but I do wonder if the mother was depressed. Her lack of energy, her seeming lack of care for her child – was she pregnant, by any chance? I'm not attempting to condone her behaviour (and I do know, as someone who works in a school, that there are some TERRIBLE parents out there), but it makes me wonder that she chose to sit out of sight. Even lousy parents often want to appear to be doing the right thing, to avoid Social Services being invoked. The little girl may have picked up her 'torture' from someone else (woman's partner) – which may give the mother another reason for being depressed…I had a form of post natal depression after the births of two of my children (second and fourth) and probably could have given a good impression of a mother who didn't give a damn at those times!

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  2. How sad 😦 That poor little girl. And also her poor mum – she must be in a really bad place to care so little about her daughter. I just feel desperately sad when I witness situations like this.

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  3. Talli: I know. When I asked the girl if she was OK after wetting herself, she nodded but then began backing away from me looking distressed, as though I was going to shout or tell her off. At that point I did wonder why she was so frightened. Makes you wonder, doesn't it…Jane: I couldn't see any sign of pregnancy, so if she was, she was either early on or hiding it well. Don't get me wrong, I'm not totally condemning this woman with hatred, it just really got to me how disinterested she was both in her child generally and in her safety. Anyone could've walked off with her. But I see what you are saying about depression, it could well have been that.Maureen : I agree. I don't think there is ever a time when talking about torture is 'ok'.Clare: Yes, I know. As Jane said earlier, maybe there is underlying depression there somewhere….

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  4. Situations like that make you feel really awkward because you are put in a position you really shouldn't have to be in. Who knows the reason why a child that young understands about torturing and killing things? It's really sad though. On a happier note, yay for me. Can't wait to read Margaret's book, saves me a virtual trip to amazon!

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  5. Yes, I find it sad, really sad. It makes me shudder to think of how life might be for some children.Good to have found your blog Lucie. Look forward to following your posts.warm wishesDebbie

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  6. That's a terribly sad story, Lucie, and as distressing to you as it was to the little girl. But it does sound as though the neglect might not only be in public – hopefully it's not anything worse.

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  7. Sue: I make you right – it's certainly not the child's fault.Liz: I felt extremely awkward but what could I do? Someone had to help the child. Glad we saved you a trip to Amazon!Debbie: Hello! Thank you so much for following me. I hope you find my posts of interest. :-)Rosemary: I hope so too!

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  8. What a traumatic experience – as a mother your protective instincts are so strong that it's hard to understand another mother without them. I was hyper-vigilent when my three boys were young and could not make sense of people who could harm or neglect children. On a lighter note – I do think Matthew McConaughey is fab – and Gerard Butler, who is pinned up above my desk for inspiration purposes. Sigh…

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  9. Hi Janice!Yes, my mothering instinct did just take over. It's a given, we all have our off days as parents, but that was just a little too much for me.And Gerard Butler….mmmmmm…..xx

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