I am a very emotional and sensitive person and I always have been. I feel things deeply and often tear up over stories I read on Facebook that other people would find laughable. However, now that I am a mother I find it is even worse. I mean, understanding the love that a parent has for their child changes everything. And imagining what I would do if something happened to my own kids is one of my worst nightmares.
I usually don’t watch the news but I do occasionally put it on CP24 for the weather and I do go on Facebook regularly. Lately I have been finding myself haunted by the stories have been reading.
“Mother slits throats of toddler and infant twins because they wouldn’t be quiet”
“Three year old shoots mother with gun in Walmart”
“Mother files for divorce after husband refuses to give up son with down syndrome”
Seriously, I feel it in my body as my chest tightens and I get upset. Hours later I will find myself wandering back to the haunting images in my head from the stories.
And sometimes it comes from where you would least expect it. The other night in bed I was on a Positive Parenting website I read a question posted by someone about what they should do about their relative who regularly threatens and beats their three year old. I was in tears reading about the way these people treated their poor defenseless child and imagining the anguish the family felt wanting to help but not knowing what to do.
I will admit it. I am middle/upper class, I have a good upbringing and education, and I take pride in being a good parent. Let me tell you, that feels like a competitive sport on some days. for example, a bunch of moms in my office were recently competing about the lengths they went to for their child’s valentines cards! While I don’t really buy into that and I find Pinterest laughable, it is so easy to get caught up in it and think of yourself as a “bad parent. I talk to other moms who feel like they are “bad parents” and then you read stories like this and it makes you realize what a good parent you actually are. You kids have food, shelter, and all the love in the world, everything else is just gravy.
I suppose in a way these stories serve as reminders that things could be a lot different but still I have not yet found a way to brush them off the way I did sans kids. I remember my shock at crying over an episode of CSI that I had seen ten times and not cared and then after having my son, well, it was like watching it for the first time.
Maybe I never will be able to brush it off. I will admit that being sensitive is a blessing and a curse and while I wouldn’t change it I am one of those people who is happy to watch the feel good stories about puppies and kittens and leave the violence in the world unknown.
I am curious to know: how do you handle watching/reading about these types of stories? Do you just tune them out or take them with a grain of salt? Feel free to comment in the section below.