Blogging Up The Works

Monday, May 13, 2013

Haiku Month - Day 13

Culpablility?
Irresponsibility.
Laid at your doorstep.


So we have another twist in the Tia Sharp murder trial with the accused pleading guilty. It is a dreadful case as all these types of murder are but you have to wonder what on earth was going on in the family.

As I remember from when the story originally broke, Stuart Hazell had been the lover of Tia's mother before going on to live with the Grandmother. I might be confusing this case with another but I don't think so. Then, we have a list of his previous convictions today and apparently they weren't any secret. People on the estate were afraid of him and knew of him. It's not like he'd done something 40 years earlier in another part of the country.

Now, I am as appalled at the murder as the next person, but when you have the mother saying how "she gave him the ultimate trust" of looking after her daughter and now look what he did, you have to question the decision making of the mother? She isn't responsible for the death but really, you trust your daughter to the care of this man whom you know about, and then when he does something like this, however extreme it might be in comparison to his other violent crimes, you lament at how he has taken something from you? How can a parent really be so naive as to think 1)he was a safe choice to leave your daughter with, and 2) the lifestyle choices of the adults in the family were a template for good parenting. I know little about Tia's father,he could be as bad as the rest of them but I do have sympathy for him as he doesn't seem to be part of this sorry mess.

The person however that I have most sympathy for is Tia,who was subjected to a life within that family. What is worrying though is that she isn't a one off when it comes to being a child in such a dysfunctional family. There are children at M's school who could end up with the same result. Some of the stuff the teachers hear about their lives is awful. And it's not just the breakdown of the initial parents relationships. Some of the children discuss their "parents" with identifying numbers. One child was telling M that he has a new sister because his second mum is with his third dad and that dad's daughter is now his sister. (His second mum is his dads next wife after his parents split up, and she has now moved on to someone else who is his third dad as his mum has also got a new partner who became his second dad). I've said before how neglected some of the children are. I know there are those politically who will claim people just have kids to claim benefits and jump the housing queues, and whether it's right or not, it's difficult to see what other reason some of these parents ever had for having children.

Do some parents not understand, when you have a child you are responsible for it's safety , well-being, behaviour, socialisation, etc. It isn't a job you can do for a few years and then give up, nor just do it for office hours. And is spreads across all social groups so it isn't just the unemployed or "benefit scroungers". If I was run over by a bus, even at the age of 56, my mums first thoughts virtually would be to wonder if she had spent enough time teaching me to cross the road safely! Is it, as some would say, a problem of poor parenting leading to their kids having even less idea of parenting? Is it the idea that parents have to think of themselves too and should have "me" time?

Tia Sharp won't be the last child to be killed through dysfunctional family life, and to be honest I don't know what we can do about it, but we surely can't go on as is.

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