Could you hit your child?
Original post 3/2014
Both of my parents and stepfather abused me. We’re not talking spanking, we’re talking banging your head into the wall. I am 100% for discipline, accountability and house rules. You see children who have involved parents and the childs demeanor. I see parents yelling at the child while grocery shopping, belittling them in front of strangers.
What we can’t see is child abuse. Child abuse is a taboo topic for most. My mother physically and emotionally abused me. I never told anyone, not even close family. I walked on eggshells at home. My first attempt at suicide was at 9 years old. One morning I went to make breakfast and my mother told me I could not wear those jeans to school. This was the early 1970’s I was in 7th grade and probably argued with her. All the years my mother abused me, I never hit back.
This morning was different. She started calling me a slut. She came to grab me and I hit her in the face. We were fighting and my stepfather walks in. Picture a 100 lbs. 12-year-old with braces getting hit in the mouth with a fist by of grown man. The inside of my mouth was bleeding from the braces breaking the skin. I had a bruise from nose to chin and some blackness around the eyes. I was not allowed to go to school for several days.
When I returned most of the bruising was still visible. I was a pro at making up reasons for the cuts and bruises in the past and made one to use for this if asked. I almost made it thru the day when my Music teacher asked me to come in the hall. I swore by my story like the best lair you’ve seen. She probably knew long before that day, today it was the bruises on the face.
She made me go to the school counselor and tell her what happened. Before saying anything, I ask to call my grandmother. I told her what was going down and it was going to get ugly. I didn’t say anything when I got home and went straight to my room as usual. The next day I entered hell. I arrived at school, two CPS workers were waiting to interview me. I begged for over two hours crying hysterically not to file a report or contact my mother. They were doing their job, unfortunately it is not always the best solution for the child involved.
A couple of weeks later CPS stopped by unannounced. Fire filled my mother’s eyes. Her story was I lied all the time, had a very low IQ and she was waiting on an opening at the Terrell Mental Hospital. I was no angel but nothing out her mouth was true. I had my head beat into the counter and walls for that smart move. I kept thinking how could any mother watch a grown man hit her child. By end of school year I had tried to kill myself several times including cutting myself at school.
I would feel an obligation to the child if I saw abusive behavior. Thinking about a child getting hit, starved, chained to the floor, all current headlines, are hard to swallow. I question if the shootings and bullying at schools are the long-term effect of children looking for attention or a child/teen at the end of rope. I would like to hear your thoughts on Child Abuse and how it affects school today. I don’t have the answers. After years of therapy, I don’t feel emotion when talking about my abuse.