Friday, April 13, 2007

Hurting our Children

As I was visiting various blogs, I began to mull over what one young blogger flippantly wrote on a comment to me: "Do you ever think about hurting your kids?" Now, I am quite certain that this question was not meant to inspire deep thought, but it was the impetus for this post-an extrapolation from mundanity to broader implications.
The simple answer to that question is, yes, I do think about that. As a mother, I think about that all of the time. First, though, it is important to consider what constitutes hurt. So, if we are defining it, as I suppose was meant, on the most superficial level, as physical hurt, then I have to say that I don't think about that. However, if we take a more expansive view of the word hurt, then I would say that I contemplate 'hurting my kids' every day.
I think about their being hurt by who I allow them to hang out with. I think about their being hurt by what I allow them to watch on T.V. I think about their being hurt by what I allow them to listen to. I think about their being hurt by what they are being fed for nourishment, both physically and spiritually. I think about their being hurt by how I permit them to spend their time.
There are so many ways that a child can be 'hurt' by a parent, physically is the easiest to avoid and probably easiest from which to recover. But judging by what goes on in society today, there are not many people wondering about the indelible damage done to a child from all of the other potentially hurtful facets of life.
Being human is not solely about physical, tangible, sensory experiences of this world, if it were, the job of parent would be much more transparent, obvious. What bears down with such force on our minds and hearts as to influence our morals, desires, and courses of action in life, are the invisible scepters, the societal whisperings which hold sway over the pervasive
fears of a
mother.

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