On Watching the News as a Mum

Now that I'm Petra's mother, I view the world from a more baby-focused perspective.  The idea of unpleasant things happening to any child anywhere upsets me in an immediate personal way.  For example, I recently saw a news item about drug raids which was illustrated with some stock footage of a raid on a crack house.  The police burst in all hopped up on adrenaline, wearing gas masks and flak jackets and carrying huge guns, to find only a skinny young woman and her baby.  They sat the mum and child (who would have been 9 or 10 months old I'd guess – just a little older than Petra) side by side against a wall while they searched the house.  Then they took the woman away in handcuffs and passed the baby, who was screaming hysterically, from officer to officer until he reached a social worker or some such.  I was haunted for days, imagining the baby's terror at being taken away from his mother and taken away by what must have looked to him like monsters, not men.  Horrible.

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4 Responses to On Watching the News as a Mum

  1. Roewan says:

    I'm not a Mum but I get very intense feelings of anger whenever I read or see a news item about anything small and/or helpless getting hurt or abused or even just crying in fear. I feel compelled to help somehow or come to the rescue. This includes babies, small children, all baby animals, cats, dogs, most larger animals, birds and my sister too.

  2. Janette says:

    I know what you mean. I have similar reactions, and about my sister as well. If things go wrong for her I want to protect her and if anyone messes with her I want to mess with them.The mummy thing is slightly different in a way that I can't quite explain. I think once you have your own baby you imagine how it would be if the bad stuff were happening to her/him and that heightens your response and makes it more personal somehow. And it's not just a motherly thing, fathers have it too. Travis has also noticed that he has a stronger response to anything to do with kids.

  3. Jack Yan says:

    Being one of the few people who have a memory going back around nine months of age, I can tell you it is terrifying. I had to sit an exam to get into kindergarten at age two (I kid you not). This had to be done solo with the examiner. At that age, even the examiner at a kindergarten looks threatening; the police even more so. I’m willing to bet that some offenders today had negative experiences of police or authority figures in their infancy.

  4. Janette says:

    An exam at 2 – that's crazy. I'd have been off school for life if I'd had to do that. What kind of exam did they give a toddler? I can't imagine…

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