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Get assistance for that suffering child

Helen Bartlett brutalised her 12-year-old child for six minutes to demonstrate her horror and projected impending shame at the girl’s actions and also her rage at being unable to control her. It was also aimed at the absent father. Has he shown up yet?

To worsen matters she posted the horror to Facebook where it will continue to humiliate her girl child and future adult female via friends and would be employers for the rest of her natural life. 

That lost and hurting child will always love and stand up for her mother. All children want to be loved and touched with kindness and feel safe in the knowledge that someone cares for them whether they live in a hovel or a palace. While that child is sincere in her apology that “... it will never happen again”, I can predict with certainty as a once-abused child myself— “for being harden”—that worse could be on the horizon because the unexpressed emotions which caused her to upload the semi-nude photos of herself, tamped down for the moment, are still there.

More psychology is required of parents and caregivers today. Make the time after work—forget about the bills, work and whatever else— no matter how tired you feel. Put down the cellphones, tablets and laptops and give your child your undivided attention. 

Adult reactions and prejudices force children—who start out honest—to censor what they say and eventually lie because they know you do not want to hear it or you are too busy or tired or you would be angry if you knew.

For all those who support this frustrated mother’s actions with the refrain “I get licks in school and I turn out alright” what you learned was to perpetuate the cycle of violence and abuse at home and to tolerate, promote and support it elsewhere by your silent approval! 

While I congratulate Ms Bartlett for being aware that her absent partner’s influence is causing her child’s abhorrent behaviour and since the social services dropped the ball, she must urgently seek assistance elsewhere for her suffering child.

Catherine Hidalgo

Port of Spain

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