Tuesday, November 22, 2005
The post where I rant and rave about stupid people some more.The Three Good Doctors are posting about "home," and it has made me pensive. I used to look at my young students every day, every year, and wonder what they went home to every night. Sometimes, I knew, and my heart broke for them daily. With others, I had no idea. When a child comes to school in rags, shoes held together with tape and rubber bands, it's pretty much a done deal that there's trouble at home. Usually, these children were ravenous because the only 'decent' meal they ever got was at school so Monday mornings, so they RAN from the bus to the cafeteria for that free breakfast that was sometimes the first food they'd had since Friday lunch.
Most of the time, THOSE parents never darkened the door of the school for any reason. Occasionally, one of them would actually show up for a conference, and I would sit there on the other side of the table gritting my teeth and gripping a pencil so tight that sometimes it broke, because nine times out of ten, the parent of my raggedy little starveling was dressed pretty darn well, and it was rare that he/she didn't reek of cigarette smoke. In other words, money WAS being spent, but not on the child.
Cigarettes in the purse, no socks on the child. Beer in the refrigerator, no decent shoes for the child. Nice clothes on the adult, rags on the child.
I can feel my blood pressure rising as I remember it.
Why, why, WHY, when these poor kids are constantly removed from these 'homes,' are they just as constantly put right back in to be mistreated just like before? Sometimes, in fact most times, 'keeping the family together' is NOT important. Sometimes, splitting a family apart is the best thing that could ever happen to it. When parents do not behave like adults, they have no business inflicting it on innocent children. Get the kids out of that house, and put them where they'll be fed and clothed and loved. Any adult who would buy cigarettes when his/her child has no socks, is a monster, not fit to raise a child. Addictions? Cry me a river. The needs of children always come before any needs of an adult. And especially before an adult's hobby, toy, or habit.
SC&A are always reflective and wise, but it wasn't only their posts today that have made me remember these things, and sit here fighting tears.
Today in class, we were discussing "It's A Wonderful Life," in relation to our own lives. I asked my students to think about how life might have been for their loved ones had they never been born.
That was when we all learned that one of my lovely students, who is still only nineteen, has been the 'mother' of her seven siblings for eight years, ever since her mother 'left.' If she had never been born, those siblings would probably have been sectioned out to foster homes. Her brothers might have gotten in trouble with the law, with nobody at home to supervise them. Her sisters might have sought 'relationships' in an attempt to get affection. Her father might have succumbed to his depression if he had to work four jobs knowing nobody was watching over his children. She told us that her youngest sibling was only two when their mother 'left,' and that he started calling her 'mom' within a few days of her leaving. She talked about cooking, buying clothing, budgeting, potty-training. . . . when all the other girls her age were dating, hanging out, and staying after school for ball games and club meetings. Was she sorry? No, she would not have done it any other way, but it would have been nice to have been a teenager during her teens, instead of having to be an adult.
Look around. Every person has a story to tell. Sometimes you can tell by their outsides, and sometimes you can't.
Most of the time, that story has something to do with their home, and who was there, and who WASN'T there.
Some people are parents via biology or adoption, and others are parents via fate. There is no guarantee which kind will be the best kind.
I would bet money, though, if I had any money, that an adult who would put his/her own selfish wants and addictions over and above the needs of a little child, is not even going to be in the running. Shame on them. Shame, and more shame.
I do not understand many things in this world, and one of them is this: when "everybody" knows a home is not a fit place for a child, why does "everybody" talk about that fact, yet allow the child to remain in the home?
"What a shame, those poor kids, alcohol, drugs, prostitution, gambling, live-in lovers, possible molestation. . . . ." and then we watch them get on the bus, knowing they're going "home" to hell house.
I know that mistakes are made all the time, in removing children from so-called 'homes,' but I think even more mistakes are made all the time in NOT removing children. Why should their worthless parents have all the rights, and the children have none?
I am so down tonight. I wish I could gather up all these kids and wash them, and feed them, and put clean socks on their feet, and intact shoes, and pretty clothes. I wish I could fill Christmas stockings for them, and hug them, and give each one a doll or toy of some kind that would be their very own and nobody else's. And if their worthless deadbeat parent tried to take it and sell it for drugs or booze, I hope a sensor in it would explode and wipe that bum off the face of the earth. Peace on earth, yes.
Read it right: "Peace on earth to men of good will."
The other kind can bite me.
Posted by Mamacita (The REAL one) @ 9:46 PM | |