Friday, July 26, 2013

Time to Re-Learn the Community Approach to Raising Children. By: C. Albrecht

Brianna Lopez

After immediately reading this article, I couldn’t trust myself to speak, move, or even write. My mind was racing, perseverating on what Brianna went through, and contemplating acts of revenge.

Seriously, how could the cruelty and torture - of an infant - exist so casually; tolerated by those who call themselves “family?"

Sadly, it came to me –  the general, apathetic response from bystanders, as well as the violent parenting involved, will not stop. Perhaps it is "nature versus nature", or a bit of both, but clearly this extended family is missing the basic rudimentary building blocks of parenting - e.g. loving your children. 

It became obvious that the family had endured abusive behaviour for so long that the unchecked abuse was considered the norm. Therefore, the behavioural circle remains unbroken.

The problem within this multi-generational family was that there had never been one strong person; someone to stand up and say, “Stop that! This is wrong!” The Lopez family was so clueless, they didn’t think twice about abusing their newborn child, nor were they worried about outsiders seeing the baby covered with bruises and bite marks. They saw nothing wrong with Brianna's upbringing.

What to do? Society (meaning ALL of us) has to go back to the Block-Watch mentality. Instead of apathetic observances, we will return to the neighborhood safe houses, and the emergency phone tree when there’s a concern. We have to become proactive about providing safety nets to those children, spouses etc. who are unable to recognize and/or do it for themselves. Instead of doubting our initial gut response and reaction to someone's parenting ability, we should immediately act on what we instinctively feel is wrong. We should also challenge the parents and their skills. If it turns out to be a false alarm, the parents should be grateful that we are alert enough to bring the issue to their attention. Giving birth does not mean we are automatically good parents - all parents can benefit from constant learning, listening to advice, and progressing accordinaly.

We need to revert back to those safety-in-numbers days, and we especially need to remember that it takes a village to raise a child. Starting today, WE are that village. Be alert!

Warning: This article includes detailed descriptions of Brianna’s abuse as well as pictures, as posted by “letsfindthem”. Do not open if such reading disturbs you.

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