I'm in tears today.
In the news: a mother in New Mexico smothered her three year old boy, she says, because she "didn't want him to grow up feeling ignored and unloved, the way she did." Apparently she knew she was a bad mom because she spent all her time partying instead of parenting, and she had no desire to change her ways.
But did she not think of leaving the child with some caring family members? Or putting the child up for adoption if she truly has no caring family members?
No, she'd rather kill him.
And in 1994, Susan Smith sent her van into a lake with her kids strapped into their car seats... they drowned, of course... why? because she didn't want kids anymore.
Did she not think of letting their father, who loved them and wanted them, raise them? She could have walked away and the kids would have been better off -- a little sad that their mother was a flake, perhaps, but not beyond repair, and not incapable of a happy life. Did she think of that?
No, she'd rather kill them.
I dealt with a criminal case on appeal once, in which the mother had killed the child because, she said, she did not want him to have to suffer abuse during parenting time with his father.
Did she not think of calling child protective services? Consulting an attorney regarding changing the parenting time provisions? Obtaining counseling for the child to help him deal with any problems he might have with his Dad?
No, she'd rather kill him.
Then there was Andrea Yates, who killed her four boys and infant daughter by drowning them in the bathtub. She killed them, she said, because she "was a bad mother and wasn't raising them properly," and she had some misguided notion, based on her strange brand of religious fervor, that they were doomed to hell if she continued "raising them wrong" and so they'd be better off dead.
I think everyone agreed Andrea Yates was actually psychotic, had real mental problems that weren't treated properly... I'm not sure what to think of that case, actually... sometimes I almost feel sorry for Andrea, medicated to a state of sanity and in prison deeply regretting her actions; other times I think, even if she was crazy, couldn't she just walk away instead of killing her kids?
Those poor kids. All of them. Can you imagine anything worse than having your own mother kill you? Your mother whom you trust and adore and rely on for everything? Maybe it's worse to be raised by such a psychotic person, I don't know.... but there are so many people who would love to adopt a child, it just breaks my heart to think of these poor dead kids who could have been happy, and made some childless person happy...
Are all these women as crazy as Yates was? Or are they just evil? Or just too stupid to think of a better solution than murder? What is wrong with our society that mothers feel justified in killing their kids?!?
People, please listen. These are very simple instructions:
If you are ever thinking that your kids would be better off dead, YOU ARE WRONG. So, stop right there and go check yourself into a mental hospital. Ask for help. Now!
Perhaps your kids would be better off without you (especially if you are abusive or psychotic or just plain dysfunctional), without the abusive spouse, or without both of you. But that does not mean you should kill them.
Instead, you should either get enough of the right medication that you can function (and then take the med's, for cryin' out loud!!), or if you can't get your act together, walk away! Give the kids up for adoption maybe, or let your (ex-)spouse or your parents or your spouse's parents raise them. But don't kill your kids.
I can't stand any more heartbreaks while reading the news.