Friday, August 27, 2010
Many, many years ago, a young girl of eighteen years old, married a man who was in his early thirties. They were fairly happy for the duration of the six years their marriage lasted. However, circumstances and personal growth on both parts caused their union to finally crumble and break apart. When they split up as husband and wife, the young girl, who was now a young woman, felt it was best they part as friends, rather than enemies, not only for their sake, but their children's sake as well. They had a son and a daughter.
When they divorced, the judge ordered the husband to pay child support, have visitation every Wednesday evening and every other weekend, he could have the children from Friday evening to Sunday night. This arrangement worked for a couple of months until the young woman lost her job, then eventually her apartment. She had no where to go with the children as she had primary custody of them. Her ex-husband offered her the chance to stay at his place until she could get back on her feet. She agreed, more for the children's benefit than anything else.
One evening, when it was cold and rainy outside, their son became ill, (there had been a virus going around the school he attended.) Being the good and dutiful mother that she tried to be as her children were her life, this young woman went to the pharmacy to get some medication for the vaporizer and some Vick's Vapor Rub to put on his chest to help break up the congestion he was developing.
While she was out, she also decided to exchange the black patent leather shoes her daughter had fallen in love with and had wanted so very badly. When she had bought them, she hadn't realized her daughter's feet had grown to a size larger. After the exchange for a larger size, she thought some ice cream would help her son feel better and be a nice little treat for her daughter- so, one more stop was made at the grocery store.
When she arrived back home and anxious to get her son feeling better plus give her daughter the shoes as she knew now they would fit, the young mother walked into the house. Something was wrong...
Her son was lying quietly on the sofa in the living room and her ex-husband was sitting in the kitchen by the table. Where was her daughter?
"Where's Emily?" she questioned.
He looked down at the floor and slowly replied, "call the police- I killed her."
"What?" she shrieked as the packages fell out of her arms with a thud onto the floor. "No! You couldn't have done that! Where is she?"
"I told you- I killed her... she's in the bedroom on the floor... call the police."
The young woman ran to the bedroom doorway and true to his word, their daughter was lying dead on the floor... she was only four years old...
It's been over thirty years since this happened and it's the first time this young woman, who is now an elderly person has spoken about this, except with the exception of a couple of close friends and family members knowing. The pain she felt at that time has stayed with her for all of these years. So much guilt had filled her because her daughter wanted to go to the store with her that night, but the rain was so cold and it was the beginning of the flu season. She thought she was protecting Emily health-wise and- she felt her children were safe with their father.
As to why he did this, she never got an answer from him and he would never say. He went to prison for a period of fifteen years then was released. From what she has heard as she hasn't seen or been in touch with him since this time, he has Alzheimer's Disease and doesn't know or remember anyone or anything.
Emily got her new shoes- she was buried with them on and they fit perfectly...
This is a true story, the child mentioned by the name of Emily is a ficticious name. Names have been changed to protect the privacy of this particular family.
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Usually viewed as a private matter between two adults domestic violence in fact affects all areas of our communities, including the workplace. Employees home lives can affect their performance at work, particularly with an issue like domestic violence. Many abusers attempt to stalk, harass, threaten or injure victims at work. For the victim, actions like these can present barriers to getting and keeping a job and often result in reduced productivity and lost wages. For the employer and co-workers, it can result in increased medical costs, reduced productivity, absenteeism and heightened risks of violence to others.
Not only is domestic violence bad for people, Domestic Violence is bad for business. However, by choosing to proactively address this issue in the workplace, employers can:
•Enhance workplace safety
•Increase employee productivity and morale
•Decrease absenteeism and turnover
•Create a powerful, positive impact in the community
•Implement effective prevention and intervention strategies
As an on-going effort to protect citizens through a rather large company in our community that has over two hundred employees, they have implimented a security program that will be in place as of next week. Details of this program is not for me to say, (as I work for this company,) however, I do believe it will be useful in the matter of helping to save lives that could possibly be in danger within the workplace. It has been discovered that one in ten employees are/or have been, a victim of domestic violence.
More and more companies throughout the United States are/or already have a security program along with an intricate security system in place.
I just pray, programs such as what we're about to take on at our work, won't give the victims a false sense of security and they forget to watch their backs once they step outside the factory doors at the end of their shift...
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
We raise our babies so that they will grow up to be adults of faith, honesty, respect and wisdom that they have learned from little on up. We pour our love and soul into our children so that they will know how to treat another human being with the utmost respect; starting with their parents.
Our children get into their teens, and it is like a switch goes on. The peer pressure sets in and the signs of hatred and depression can be seen... some even get physically abusive to the ones they love the most.
We, as parents, right away feel like it is our fault and end up taking the blunt end of much our teenager and/or adult child’s anger. They take out the anger they are holding in, on us because, they feel we are their safe zone. We as parents, want to continue to nurture them. We want to understand them. But most of all in the back of our minds, we are still blaming ourselves and wondering where we went wrong. If you are a parent that has made your children your world and been there for them, you are not at fault. We, as parents can only do so much. If we continue to give and give, then our children, no matter what age they are, will continue to take and take and not learn for themselves.
Our children can be raised in a most Conservative Christian home, or a very dysfunctional one, and have the same outlook on life, no matter what the parents have tried to instill into them. They most likely will get to the point of no return. They break your heart, you spend time crying and worrying about them and most of all you continue to love them. It adds stress to our lives, not only the pain we are going through as parents, but seeing our children no matter what age they are, destruct themselves.
I write this knowing many of us as parents go through this. I, myself, have went through one of my children dropping out of high school only a few months from graduation. She then travelled into the world of drugs and became addicted to meth. I was devastated. I felt I had failed her as a parent. I continued to watch her go downhill and there was no way of stopping her. She was thrilled with her new life. I sat day in, and day out, crying and praying for a miracle. She continued in her world of meth and brought three children into her world. I continued to blame myself. What could I have done different? Why did she not listen to me about drugs and what they can do to you? Many more questions ran through my mind and tore at my heart. I was the one that became depressed, and could not focus on other things that are important in my life too.
Then through prayer and knowing God loved us both, the reality came that this was not my fault. We raise our children to be of good spirit, loving and giving. We teach them right from wrong. It is up to them to accept the teachings from us. Otherwise, they will make their own mistakes and while doing so, we as parents have to pray that they learn by them. They have to face the consequences of the decisions they make.
My prayer is for the parents that are going through this now, or even in the past, that they realize that they can only do so much. They are not parents that have failed especially when your children are your world.
This verse has much meaning to me. Not just as a parent but as a person. I fall back on this verse many times for many different things in my life.
“Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.” Deut. 31:6 (NKJV)