November 17th, 2008



One of the things I read on multiple blogs before I had Margaret was that once you had a kid you tended to react to the news differently. People reported that bad news stories seemed much worse, as if they had happened to their own children. I didn't think such a thing would happen to me, I'm not the sort of person who gets worked up about the everyday tragedies that are a large part of the news media. It seemed rather unbelievable that I would react like that

Yeah, about that.

I can still read about the war, fires, floods and the like, no problem. It's just that lately there seem to have been a rash of stories of child abuse, and that has really been bugging me a lot more than such stories used to. Two of the stories involved the abuse and terrible deaths of babies that were a year and a half old, with accompanying photos of the kids when they were younger... like close to Margaret's age. Before I would have thought these stories were tragic, with a side of 'it is so unfair that people like this can have kids when other, more responsible people can't'. Now these stories feel like a direct threat to my baby, and I have this urge to travel thousands of miles and apply a sledgehammer where it will do the most good. (Important safety tip: don't threaten my baby.)

I just can't understand how anyone could abuse their own child or stand by while someone else was abusing their baby. I truly do not get it, at least emotionally. Maybe it's hard for me to imagine because I had such great parents. Even so, babies are cute because we are genetically programmed to find them cute and feel this urge to protect them. I find it hard to wrap my head around the concept of people so broken that they would willfully harm a baby, but clearly such people exist. They'd just better not exist anywhere near me if they know what's good for them.

Warren has said in the past that in a way he thinks it would be a good thing if everyone had to do IVF to get pregnant. I feel the same way, especially after reading these news stories. Every child should be wanted. If it were harder for most people to have babies the types of people who abuse children probably wouldn't have them in the first place and fewer terrible things would happen.

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