Okay, what is *with* people indeed? After having just read the thread below about the child dragging its head on the ground in the swing, I'm beginning to wonder WHAT THE PROBLEM IS in this society that we treat children this way. Does it seem to anyone else on this board that there are a *lot* of people who, for all intents and purposes, abuse their children -- not in the classic, "Where's my belt, you need a whuppin'" kind of way, but in ignoring their children, mocking them, or (in the case of one poster's story below), letting them drag on the ground trapped in the belt of a swing?
I may be an idiot, but from my perspective, it seemed to me for a long time that classic child abuse mostly occurred in families where (largely for economic reasons) the child was a burden or otherwise unwanted. The abuse, inexcusable and wrong, was at least comprehensible: there seemed to be a clear cause and effect going on between a baby they didn't want and abusing that baby, *wrong and f'ed up as that is*.
However, there's this mom of twins I know from playgroup whose husband is wealthy and who, moreover, went through infertility treatments that cost tens of thousands of dollars in order to be implanted with another woman's eggs. Clearly, economic necessity or a financial pinch brought on by a baby is not a stressor in her life here, and if you're going through the hormonal hell that is infertility treatment, having an unwanted baby is not an issue either.
To date, I have seen this woman verbally abuse her boy, who is about two-and-a-half, about three or four times -- roughly grabbing his arms and semi-shaking him, getting in his face, ignoring him when he's climbing up on a three-foot high kitchen barstool/chair, calling him "turd" to his face...but the kicker, for me, was when she put him in his "time out" area. The kid was angry and upset and (unsurprisingly) proceeded to cry. She then started to mock him, saying, "Oh, myyyy! He is soooo angry, isn't he? Look at him!" I left the room and shot the kid a completely pitying glance, which seemed to piss him off even more.
What makes me wonder whether or not I'm overreacting is that no one else in this play group seems to think anything of it. They chuckled along with her at him - and all I could think of was that if *I* were upset by something, it would be utterly demoralizing and infuriating to have someone (my MOTHER!!!) just *laugh* at me.
I don't get it. Am I off-base here??? What the hell is the matter with people? I don't understand how someone who wanted kids, who can afford kids, who spent a shitload of coin to GET her kids, can treat them like this. Would someone enlighten me, please?