This really makes me angry!!!

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by bran155, Feb 23, 2009.

  1. bran155

    bran155 Guest

    I am so tired of seeing all of these abused children grow up to be extremely dysfunctional adults who end up committing horrible crimes. They must pay for their deeds however their parents or whoever abused them get away with what they have done to the child. I am not saying that kids should get away with murder. But why is it that when we as a society are dealing with children who clearly have valid issues due to the way in which they were raised we try to help them. But once they become adults we throw them in prison and their parents go on with life uninterupted!!!

    Like for instance, a girl who is sexually abused by a father for years, over and over again. She finally snaps and kills her dad. She gets thrown in jail and the father bears no responsibility whatsoever. I bet if we interviewed the prison population the number of inmates that were treated horrifically during childhood would be staggering. I know this is a fine line and I am NOT saying that I condone murder, I just really feel for these adults who are really still wounded children in a bigger body!!!

    What about the kid who lived with his grandparents, never violent, a good boy. He started taking Zoloft and snapped, killed his grandparents and ended up in prison. Was is it the Zoloft? Do we even care?

    Or the kid who has a violent life, he is clearly acting out, fighting, committing crimes, doing drugs and so forth. He gets arrested, thrown in jail. Do we even bother to take into consideration that his home life is horrendous? That he is going home to no food, a drug addicted mother, an alchoholic father who abuses him horribly, he just wants to die. Why aren't his parents held responsible for messing him up, shouldn't that be a crime in itself?

    I think once we hear someone's story we can no longer scratch our heads and wonder why? Most of the time it all makes sense!!

    What about an abuser? A young man who grew up in a violent home. Watching his mother get beat by her man day after day. The violence turns to him, now he is getting beat day after day. Then this poor young man grows up and starts to beat his wife. I mean isn't this what he has learned from his parents? Don't they own some of this? This is what he knows. Please don't mistake me, I in no way agree with physical abuse of any kind. I just think often times parents really make bad choices and the children pay dearly for them and yet they get away with it!!!!

    Just thought I'd open this up for discussion.

    Please don't yell at me!!! LOL
  2. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    Good Morning--

    This feels like a very slippery slope....

    The stories of abused kids who grow up to do horrific things make the headlines...while he stories of abused kids who grow up to be normal productive citizens don't. on the other hand--there are stories of kids raised in perfect homes who also grow up to do horrible things. It is the extremes that always focus our attention.

    I remember reading a book about parent-child mis-matches (I'm sorry that I cannot recall the title). The premise of the book was that each person is an individual with individual skills, talents, faults, etc--and every individual is born into an environment or family that either enhances, draws out, hides, or frustrates a person's natural-born traits.

    Most of us are born into imperfect situations:

    For example, I may be a gifted race-car driver, but unless I am born into the Andretti family--there is a very slim chance that my natural racing skills will ever be discovered, much less exploited to bring me fame and fortune. This is true of most of us...we have talents that simply were not useful in the particular family environment in which we grew up.

    Similarly, most of us experience frustrations--but not to the point that we become dysfunctional individuals.

    However, if a particular individual is born into exactly the right (or exactly the wrong) environment--those extreme talents or faults will be exacerbated.

    As an example, Michelangelo--who knew he would have a natural gift for sculpting?--happened to be raised by a family of stonecutters. Today, he is famous for is sculpture. Imagine if he had been raised instead by a family of fisherman? Most likely, we would never have even heard of him...

    And then the theory goes, that a person with a particular fault who lands in exactly the wrong type of environment for a person of his temperament--experiences extreme frustration, his personality flaws are magnified instead of his gifts...he will end up on the news for "snapping" and slaughtering his whole family in the middle of the night. And it might not have happened had he been brought up in a environment that was more suited to his unique set of traits.

    So...this was my very long way of saying, I am not sure that the parents can be totally faulted for how their kids end up....nor can parents be totally credited if their child does well. There are too many variables....

  3. bran155

    bran155 Guest

    Daisy, morning. :)

    You made some very good points. I would love to read that book.

    My husband and I get into this debate sometimes. My sister's ex, my nephew's father had a horrible childhood as did my husband. They were both raised by addicts and went through hell. My sister's ex's mother is a crack addict, his father lives in an institution, very nice man but severely mentally disabled. He grew up very poor, lived with his mother who verbally abused him, sold his belongings, stole his money, went on drug binges, have manic episodes and brought different men home regularly. By all accounts this guy should be an addict himself or in prison. He is not either. He is not the best father to my nephew, however. He is not a regular participant in his life. He works and hangs out with his friends. His priorities are not in the right order but he is not that bad of a guy.

    My husband grew up in a house with 2 addicts. His mother was a heroin addict for years. His real father, a crack addict, took off when he was very young. He lived with his mom and step-dad, who he loved very much but also an addict. His mother sold all of their belongings, even his toddler bed. Never had any food, lots of people in and out of the house getting high, the classic story. When he was 8 his mother was out buying drugs, he was home with his step-dad who over dosed with my husband on his lap. My poor husband sat on this guys lap, who had a needle sticking out of his arm, for 5-6 hours waiting for his mom to return. Growing up he ate at his friends house, wore their clothes and did odd jobs to get his own money. He was a gifted student, an artist, he was awarded a scholarship to a graphic arts high school where he could have really honed his skills. This goes back to what you were saying Daisy, his mother never pursued this for him. Hence, he never lived up to his full potential or followed his dream. Had his mother been pro-active in his life, he could have went far. He ended up dropping out of high school all together and went on his own at 15. To this day he does not have much of a relationship with his family.

    Here is where the debate comes in. My husband turned out to be a wonderful man and a wonderful father. He works hard, takes good care of his family, hands on with his kids, comes home every night, helps around the house, very passive, not abusive in any way, responsible and has no criminal record. He feels that my nephews dad should be more responsible and do the right thing by his son. I agree with that but I also feel as though he was not taught how to do so. My husband says, neither was he and he is doing the right thing. He feels that his past is not an excuse to be a deadbeat!!! I agree but I also feel empathy for my nephew's dad, he has no love, no normalcy in his life and no education, no one to turn to, no one guided him. My husband says, "so what, neither did I". My answer to that is "everyone is different".

    I don't know. I guess it's all a matter of how you look at it!
  4. Star*

    Star* call 911

    Interesting topic.

    What about the kid who lived with his grandparents, never violent, a good boy. He started taking Zoloft and snapped, killed his grandparents and ended up in prison. Was is it the Zoloft? Do we even care?

    This kid is named Christopher Pittman. His face was all over bulletin boards from Florence to Charleston when this was an issue. He was violent - that's why he went to live with his grandparents. His Mother had an abusive life and left Chris in it. I think the Grandparents tried to rescue him. He said in an interview this weekend that he heard voices telling him to kill.

    Since I'm somewhat familiar with this particular incident I'll use him to post about.

    First of all - One person can not be responsible for the actions of another. As much as that pains me to admit especially in his case. It is the truth. We all have choices. I think the jury in that case must have been wrought with decision. If they didn't send this boy to jail for life? They opened quite a pandoras box for others who would follow saying "I took an aspirin - I killed my neighbor." and if they did convict him? They sent a child who was 14 at the time of the murders to jail for life.

    Do I think at some point he could be paroled? (shrug) Sure, but how long does it take to rehabilitate someone who has had a life like his? That is once he's even open to getting help? Once they are rehabilitated? Are they institutionalized? Yes. Do they function well outside the walls, highest level of structure and rules of the prisons? Most - not so well. Yet the lowest amount of tax dollars spent are on mental health programs. First to be cut - last to get help. Nice - and people wonder why we have so many problems.

    Belive me - if there was EVER a parent that deserved to rot under the jail for what he did to his own son - my x would certainly be on that list. But it doesn't excuse my child from any wrong doing. If for one minute I allowed Dude to even consider that pity wagon? I think Dude would be dead or in jail. We reinforced to him that he HAS choices. We probably could have tattooed that on his wrist instead of his name. (lol) CHOICES.

    In Chris' case? I don't know if the medications had a bunch to do with it. I think they may have as I took Zoloft and had some pretty weird daydream type thoughts and so did Dude. It made us both suicidal, not homocidal. The defense did a poor job finding others who had gotten the voices in their heads or ones that had done bad things - on the medications. So the jury felt after all - he had a choice despite his past and his Mother and his medicine.

    In case you're wondering - I did sign the petition to overturn the sentence because I think this kid once out of a bad situation could have a life after some years and years of intense counseling - but asked if I would ever allow him around my own child and home? My answer was no. Do I think his mother should be held responsible? No. Do I think his Mother needs help and as many years in therapy as Chris will be in jail? YOU BET. I think that could be a potential bill if someone worded it correctly.

    Really interesting post