An appeal for empathy

11 posts
Beachboys
Posts: 23
Joined: Aug 2014
Options:
Share this post on:

An appeal for empathy

Postby Beachboys » Thu Apr 08, 2021 11:17 pm

I was walking across the dog-free zone on Wandsworth Common today with my son, who has a disability that affects his walking and running. Out of the corner of my eye, I noticed a small group - two mums with sons who were perhaps 6 or 7 years old. The children pointed at my son and started mocking and imitating the way he walked.

I didn't say anything at the time because my son hadn't noticed and I didn't want to draw his attention to the horribly cruel children.

I desperately wanted to go over and ask those boys how they could be so unkind. My son, who has already had several surgeries, faces a lifetime in and out of hospitals. Despite this, our entire family have worked very hard to make life as normal for him as possible. He went to the most gorgeous primary and now goes to an equally amazing secondary. We don't mind at all if people ask him about his condition, or about all the scars from his surgeries, or even about his limp, but this sort of ignorance is atrocious. 

I was so disheartened by what happened today and I'm still crying thinking about it. For anyone who's thinking "kids will be kids, they were young and don't know better" - that's my point. Kids need to be taught empathy and that begins at home. Please.
Post Reply
Nanny2020ldn
Posts: 76
Joined: Nov 2019
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: An appeal for empathy

Postby Nanny2020ldn » Fri Apr 09, 2021 12:02 am

Awww
Post Reply
coldatchristmas
Posts: 330
Joined: Jan 2009
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: An appeal for empathy

Postby coldatchristmas » Fri Apr 09, 2021 11:08 am

I am so sorry that you had to witness this poor behaviour. Know that there will be many children out there who will empathise and more importantly children who have parents who will encourage them to behave better. I am embarrassed as a mother that these boys were not pulled up for their cruelty. Sending a virtual hug.
Post Reply
Happypigeon
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: An appeal for empathy

Postby Happypigeon » Fri Apr 09, 2021 11:29 am

It’s a harsh world out there sometimes. My son was fed through an NG tube and I will vividly remember the day a restaurant manager asked me to feed him in the bathroom as we were upsetting the neighbouring tables. He was only a few months old at the time and it was all perfectly discreet. There was also a mother who, when her young child asked what was wrong with my son, hushed them up and whispered that he must be very sick and probably dying! There are many more examples of people being supportive and helpful though.
Those children who made fun of your son are a disgrace- and so to are the parents for not calling them out on it or raising them better. Don’t let them get you down. For every horrible person out there there are more nice and empathetic ones.
Post Reply
SW18Aurora
Posts: 3
Joined: Sep 2020
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: An appeal for empathy

Postby SW18Aurora » Mon Apr 12, 2021 7:25 am

You are a brave mother who has been through a lot and your lovely son is lucky to have such great family by his side through this journey.

I agree that the mothers or nannies who were with these children should have intervened immediately, as well as sitting them down for a proper talk when they got home. Even the nicest kids get it wrong sometimes and need parents to guide them (and sadly the horrific ones’ parents sometimes have blinkers).

If you haven’t already, please do post on NextDoor as well. Hopefully, they will see this and understand the impact.

Enjoy the beautiful snowy day with your son and know that the majority of people on here are kind and wishing you the best.
Post Reply
dimelda
Posts: 36
Joined: May 2018
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: An appeal for empathy

Postby dimelda » Mon Apr 12, 2021 12:48 pm

Kindness to others and empathy in such matters should be taught at school, & from an early age.  It's a waste of time suggesting it be taught at home.  Some kids - probably large numbers - come from families who don’t know the meaning of the word ‘empathy’.  If you rely on family to teach it, you may as well whistle.   
Post Reply
potluck
Posts: 8
Joined: Jan 2021
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: An appeal for empathy

Postby potluck » Mon Apr 12, 2021 1:26 pm

I'm so sorry to hear how utterly ignorant some people can be. It's horrendous that ppl in this day and age pinpoint, let alone make fun, of people who are 'different'. Sending a big hug to you and your son, and I'm so sorry you've had to experience this.
Post Reply
Commonality
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: An appeal for empathy

Postby Commonality » Mon Apr 12, 2021 2:49 pm

What dreadful parenting or nannying you saw that day. I’m so glad your son didn’t spot it and so sorry that you did, or that it happened at all. Very sadly those children are the impoverished people in this story and the ones to feel sorry for. Your son by contrast has all the love, support and life experience that will be making him a wise, empathetic and also resilient boy and man. By contrast what ugliness and shallowness those children let themselves be seen showing. I hope very much they are picked up on that kind of thing and can grow out of it . Thank you so much for sharing this story to highlight for us all how important and present this is.
Post Reply
Beachboys
Posts: 23
Joined: Aug 2014
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: An appeal for empathy

Postby Beachboys » Sun Apr 18, 2021 1:41 pm

Thank you for all your replies. It's comforting to know that there are still so many good people in amongst the nasty ones.
Post Reply
berret_an
Posts: 5
Joined: Apr 2021
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: An appeal for empathy

Postby berret_an » Wed Apr 21, 2021 1:29 pm

I got goosebumps, damn it. On the one hand, they are only children and are more guided only by feelings, and not by thoughts. But it's true heartbreaking
Post Reply
Starr
Posts: 101
Joined: Sep 2019
Options:
Share this post on:

Re: An appeal for empathy

Postby Starr » Wed Apr 21, 2021 2:11 pm

They are badly raised children and that is all that can be said. I'm so sorry you and your child had to experience that and you are right to appeal for kindness and empathy and for it to be taught at home. Your son sounds lovely and so do you!
Post Reply