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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My mom just called me in tears. She went over to her cousin's (we'll just call her "T") house to help her put her Christmas tree up because T has a bad back. Anyway, T was babysitting a 2.5 yr old boy and while my mom was there the little boy's mom came to pick him up. Apparently, the mom noticed that her son had pooped in his pants and proceeded to ask T if she had a belt. T got her a belt and the mom told the boy she was going to "beat his a$$" for soiling himself. My mom told T she was leaving and T said, "What? You can't handle that?" She just walked out the door and then called me crying.<br>
I told my mom that she should've stepped in but she said she felt like it wasn't her place. Now, I don't like to tell people how to parent their children but when it comes to a child's safety I WILL say something. A belt?! On a 2.5 yr old for accidentally soiling himself?!<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/Cuss.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="cuss"> I'm glad my mom at least voiced her displeasure but I couldn't have left that boy to get hit with a belt! That's abuse!<br>
What would you have done?
 

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That is abuse imo...but I dont know what the laws are over there...<br><br>
Thats really sad and I feel so sad for that little boy I wish I could be his mum and just cuddle him - that poor boy...im all teary thinking of him now... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><br><br>
I dont know what I would have done. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> Would calling the police be out of line?!
 

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OMG. I would have had to say something. I am all for respecting others' parenting choices. I know that my views are not the norm -- but... this? This is abuse. And completely out of line. The poor kid. Like it wasn't bad enough he pooped in his pants??? Oh I am so heartbroken for him. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad">
 

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I would have called Social Services. In most areas, striking a child with an object other than an open hand is considered abuse.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>ann_of_loxley</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9875630"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">That is abuse imo...but I dont know what the laws are over there...<br><br>
Thats really sad and I feel so sad for that little boy I wish I could be his mum and just cuddle him - that poor boy...im all teary thinking of him now... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><br><br>
I dont know what I would have done. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> Would calling the police be out of line?!</div>
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I feel the same way. But honestly, I don't know if the police would respond or not. I've never really looked up laws pertaining to spanking so I have no idea. It really upsets me that a mother could do that to her baby. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/gloomy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Gloomy">:<br>
And it also makes me wonder, if he was fully potty learned then did he poop his pants because he's got some emotional issues? Like being afraid of his mom?
 

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That's just hideous. I'd investigate the laws in your area, and if it's illegal I'd call, definitely. I might call anyway.
 

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I would have given the woman an earful. If she had proceeded to whip the child after hearing my tirade, then I would have called DFS.
 

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I don't know what appalls me more, the mother whipping her child, or the fact that T facilitated this "mother" a belt, knowing full well what was going to happen. I mean, I'm sure the belt wasn't for holding up his pants. I would tell your mother to report it anyways, even after the fact. If this person whips her child in front of other people in other people's houses, I don't wanna know what she does in her own home.
 

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It's abuse, and I'd report it. I'd only worry about saying something to the mom because from your post her state of mind seems like she would have beat the child harder and longer just to prove her point that she could.<br><br>
Oh and yeah I'd never ever give someone something to hit with. Period.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>LilyGrace</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9876168"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I would have called Social Services. In most areas, striking a child with an object other than an open hand is considered abuse.</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/nod.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="nod"> I wish they had the nodding smilie with a frown. That is abuse, both physical and emotional (punishing a child for loss of bowel control can do some serious pyschological damage). I agree I wouldn't have said anything to the woman who was going to hit her son. In fact I would have sat down in my car and called the police to get connected to social services so that I could give them the woman's license plate number.<br><br>
I WOULD however say something to my cousin for aiding in the known abuse of a child. THEN I would ask her if she would like to be beaten with a belt for not being able to put up her own tree since that would make as much sense as beating a child for an accident. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">:
 

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I'd call the police and the child's mother. You said T was "watching a child" so I assume it wasn't *her* child? I wonder if the mother knows about this?<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><br><br>
Terrible.
 

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The mom was the one that abused the boy, not the babysitter.
 

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This is one of the saddest posts I have read here in GD in a long time.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/gloomy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Gloomy">: I wouldn't have been able to stop myself from saying something or at least emoting -- I probably would have begun to cry to see such an atrocity.<br><br>
Those who say this is illegal -- it actually likely is NOT. I'm not sure where this took place but most states uphold parental use of implements in "disciplining" children. I am a lawyer in California and have researched this fairly extensively. It is a common misconception that it is illegal to beat little ones with belts. There are actual court cases upholding a parent's right to hit a child multiple times with an implement.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/gloomy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Gloomy">:<br><br>
Personally, I think this should be illegal, period. Those who don't want the gov't "in our homes" or "telling us how to discipline OUR children" have to accept that some people will beat their children with belts. And so long as it is legal, the law is on their side, not the child's.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/gloomy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Gloomy">:<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">:<br><br>
ETA: It also occurs to me that this poor little boy for whom we are all so sad and outraged may well end up in News/Current Events one day for beating a child himself -- maybe even to death. After all, it is exceptional that people can endure such abuse and emerge healthy and whole. And then many of us will call for punishing him harshly for harming a child. Violence against children is a sad cycle and it needs to be stopped. The mother who whipped that baby with a belt is not evil and I don't hate her (perhaps she was whipped often as a child) but I do think it would be appropriate to have her take some parenting classes.
 

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I would feel compelled to report it as well. I saddens me to think of what happens at home. Sometimes you witness things like that for a reason, remember that child has no one else to protect him. I am sending a prayer for him.
 

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I would have told the mom, no, we do not have a belt. Then I would have stepped in and told her how hitting the poor boy for having an accident was not acceptable. 2.5!!! for heavens sakes, what is that woman thinking!!??<br><br>
What I would have done may not be the "right" thing, but that poor child needs someone to stick up for his well being.
 

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at the very least some anonymous parenting and abuse info in her mailbox. Ick. I would have a hard time not returning to the home and suggesting that the mother seek assistance as soon as possible...
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/gloomy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Gloomy">:My heart breaks for that poor little boy.<br><br>
Sadly, as peacelovingmama's post lays out so well, that mama probably WAS that little boy some 20 years ago.<br><br>
I've been shocked to learn that many parents really DO view developmental milestones, like potty-learning, as hoops you have to train your child to jump through, kind of like teaching a dog tricks -- with reinforcements, either positive (such as rewarding kids for "staying dry") or negative (such as punishing kids for having accidents).<br><br>
In a situation like this, I'd try to get the mother to see things from her child's point of view. "I know accidents are frustrating -- but your child really didn't do this to upset you. At this age, it's easy to just get busy playing, and not realize you have to go 'til it's too late." Maybe offer to help clean and change the child, if the child is comfortable with me helping.<br><br>
Maybe this sounds kind of wishy-washy, but I've noticed that when a parent's reacting very strongly to what she perceives as misbehavior, it can sometimes defuse things just to help her see she's getting upset about something that's really very normal child behavior, not misbehavior at all. Sometimes just realizing that others think your response is way out-of-line, can help you rethink what you're doing at the moment.<br><br>
I have a friend who told me that years ago, she traumatized her oldest son so badly that he started screaming every time he saw a toilet. She didn't go into detail, but said she'd followed in her mom's footsteps and been very coercive about toilet training. She hadn't realized there was any other way to go about it.<br><br>
But when her son started screaming at the sight of the toilet, she realized she was doing something very wrong, and backed off. Just let him wear pull-ups 'til he wanted to use the toilet. It took a few years, but he was going to the restroom just fine by age 5. Since that time, my friend's learned a lot about potty-learning, and she's been totally different with her younger son.<br><br>
So, if you could get some info. to your cousin (maybe another poster has a book suggestion), for both her (as a babysitter) and the child's mother to peruse, on both potty learning and Gentle Discipline, maybe this could be somewhat of a turning point for your cousin as well as the mother.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Apparently, the mother of this poor boy is abused herself, by her husband. From what my mother heard from T, the mother was beaten with a belt this weekend by her husband. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/gloomy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Gloomy">: To be completely honest, part of me is thinking, "Well, now she knows how it feels" but I know that's not right. Maybe she takes out her anger towards her husband on her son...Anyway, my mom decided to call CPS after hearing that because that isn't a good environment for the child OR the mother to be in.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>aaronsmom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9902875"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">the mother was beaten with a belt this weekend by her husband. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/gloomy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Gloomy">: To be completely honest, part of me is thinking, "Well, now she knows how it feels" but I know that's not right.</div>
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Actually, she's probably "known how it feels" all of her life.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Maybe she takes out her anger towards her husband on her son</td>
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Maybe ... or maybe she's so accustomed to being hit by people who supposedly "love" her, that she's come to see this as the way you "teach" people you love.<br><br>
I hope your mom's call results in some real help for this little boy, as well as his mom and dad!
 

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Please keep us posted!
 
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