I feel so bad for the little boy who lives across the hall. - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 36 Old 04-04-2011, 08:44 PM
 
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I think you did the right thing by calling the police.  You don't know where she was hitting him so calling was a good thing, especially since she has shown herself to be cruel in other ways.  I don't think you should get involved with this family beyond calling CPS or the police whenever you think you need to.  If you were already involved then I could see stepping in to offer a helping hand, but you shouldn't go in trying to rescue this family unless you are in a stress free position and can pick up and walk away without any emotional attachment if you need to in order to protect your sanity.  Trying to rescue people that don't want to be rescued is a very difficult thing to cope with emotionally.  I used to get very wrapped up in things like this but it caused a lot of stress for me and that affected my parenting.  With CPS you probably won't see an immediate difference and they may investigate and do nothing this time, but they often have to build up a case of a lot of little reports that turn out to be nothing before they have enough suspicion to act so each call is very important in building that case up. 

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#32 of 36 Old 04-05-2011, 08:02 AM
 
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One_Girl, you're definitely right that getting involved too much can create boundary issues and have an impact on you and your own family if it gets too deep/stressful.

 

But there is a whole stretch of levels of involvement between "not at all" and "too much".

 

I never ever ever think it is too much to always look for opportunities to be nice to a family in crisis, and especially the children in that family.

 

It's not for everyone to reach out and try to open communication... but offering coffee or to walk a dog is hardly trying to "rescue" a family either.  There is a lot of in between, and each person has to figure out what their limit is.

 

Knocking on the family's door when you hear what sounds like the son being hit and just saying in a concerned, supportive way "I heard some commotion and just wanted to make sure you guys are ok" is way way too involved for some people.  For others it's what feels like the right thing to do (and then calling CPS/police if it goes on).  People have to find their own comfort level of intervention, and for some, there's very little they feel able to do.  And that's real, and we have to be realistic about our own boundaries/limits.

 

But when you are concerned about the safety and wellbeing of a child, you do NOT only have 2 options "do nothing" or "call police".  There are a lot of other options that can be considered that do not amount to you being the calvalry trying to ride in and "save" the family.

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#33 of 36 Old 04-05-2011, 01:43 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LROM View Post

One_Girl, you're definitely right that getting involved too much can create boundary issues and have an impact on you and your own family if it gets too deep/stressful.

 

But there is a whole stretch of levels of involvement between "not at all" and "too much".

 

I never ever ever think it is too much to always look for opportunities to be nice to a family in crisis, and especially the children in that family.

 

It's not for everyone to reach out and try to open communication... but offering coffee or to walk a dog is hardly trying to "rescue" a family either.  There is a lot of in between, and each person has to figure out what their limit is.

 

Knocking on the family's door when you hear what sounds like the son being hit and just saying in a concerned, supportive way "I heard some commotion and just wanted to make sure you guys are ok" is way way too involved for some people.  For others it's what feels like the right thing to do (and then calling CPS/police if it goes on).  People have to find their own comfort level of intervention, and for some, there's very little they feel able to do.  And that's real, and we have to be realistic about our own boundaries/limits.

 

But when you are concerned about the safety and wellbeing of a child, you do NOT only have 2 options "do nothing" or "call police".  There are a lot of other options that can be considered that do not amount to you being the calvalry trying to ride in and "save" the family.


I think you really have to know yourself before finding levels.  I personally can't get involved just a little and be happy with that.  I get sucked in and it rarely turns out to be a good thing so for me and the well being of my own family I have decided to keep the boundaries I know I need to have.  There are some people that can get involved only a little and stay that way forever, but that is just not something I am able to do.  I get too attached to people, especially when I am worried about someone and I have a hard time getting out situations that are dragging me and my little girl down because I care about the people involved and find it almost impossible to say no.  Before getting involved in a very tough situation like this I think the OP should consider who she is and what her response to situations like this is going to be. 

 

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#34 of 36 Old 04-05-2011, 02:08 PM
 
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Wow. First of all, being a former New Yorker, take this to heart when I say 'watch your back'......I think it's great that it's out there to offer to babysit, etc.....but also protect yourself in the sense that mom can all of a sudden start accusing you of abusing the child......I've seen it happen before. I agree with calling CPS.......but that won't guarantee anything..There are parts of NYC that make it really hard for authorities to do anything................and as another mom pointed out, maybe he wasn't hit (but that could be a stretch)............If you only heard it once, could it have been a one time thing.......maybe go bring over a plate of cookies.....maybe she's an overworked mom with no help and is at her breaking point........and (if she's using the belt, this is all she knows, bc it was probably used on her as a child).......good luck...


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#35 of 36 Old 04-06-2011, 10:09 AM
 
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I hope you call CPS. That all sounds so awful!

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#36 of 36 Old 04-07-2011, 08:11 AM
 
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I was hit with a belt when I was a child, as were my siblings.  It was never to the point of, what I felt, was abuse.  Although some will say that its abuse no matter what, as it is a belt.  As an adult, I still don't feel I was abused, however, from what I remember as a child, we were never hit so hard that you could hear the belt cracking from outside.  But it did still leave red marks on us.  As a mom now, I don't know how my parents ever did that, I could never hit my child with a belt.  While I do believe in spanking, again, I just could never use a belt.  I find it hard to even spank my child, so I do it rarely.  Honestly, what bothers me more about this story is the throwing away of the child's toys.  Maybe the mother is bi-polar or manic depressive or something, to where she would be nice most of the time, but have these episodes of being mean and/or abusive.

 

To the OP, any updates?


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