Who is at fault?

@whyaskq (7529)
Singapore
April 8, 2007 7:46am CST
I just witnessed a very ugly scene. Few people were crowding round a little girl who was crying, Suddenly, an elegantly dressed middle-aged woman rushed in, start to pull the girl's hair and screaming at her. She was apparently overwhelmed at finding the little girl. Everyone including me was shocked. She started to hammer the child on the head, continue pulling her by the hair, and dragging her away, while the girl was struggling to get away. Bewitched by the scene, I followed behind, including several others. The girl was dragged about 50m until one elderly man stepped in to stop her. "Are you mad to hammer her like that? It was you who lost your daughter, and not your daughter who got lost!" Then I realised what is happening. They were mother and daughter shopping at the interchange arcade. Somehow both lost each other. The crowd was with the girl because she was searching round the arcade for her mother. The mother continued defending herself. The man threatened to call the police. Of course, some people in the crowd too voiced their support for the little girl. In the end, it was the little girl who said sorry to the mother. I had to refrain myself from giving the little girl a hug. I would have expected that the mother, upon finding her lost daughter will hug her child closely. Instead, it was I who felt like hugging the child. I know that children tend to wander away from the parents when they see something they fancy. Are the parents supposed to ensure that the children do not wander away? If they do wander away, who is at fault? Is it the parent or the child? Friends, if a parent and child get separated from each other accidentally, who is at fault? Is it the parent's fault? Or is it the child's fault? Kindly share your opinion.
29 people like this
74 responses
@4cuteboys (4102)
• United States
8 Apr 07
It's the parents fault. I have four children and I haven't lost one yet but I am always extra careful and paranoid to keep them beside me all the time. If I lost one I would be in tears. I would be crying until I found the kid, and then I'd be hugging the kid. It is NEVER a child's fault. I mean, whos the adult here? That lady you saw should have been arrested.. that behavior is wrong, and probably part of the reason the girl wandered away. I wouldnt want to be around someone like that. Poor little girl. I hope the mom grows up because if the little girl had to apologize, it sounds like she's more of a grown up than the mom
7 people like this
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
8 Apr 07
The little girl apologised because the mother forced her to. It is indeed sad that she is frightened into saying sorry.
6 people like this
• United States
10 Apr 07
It is a real "shame" that anyone has to be so deathly afraid and hysterical of their children getting abducted, then likely raped and killed. Some say society is the same as it's always been, but I grew up in the 50's and 60's and we could ride our bikes all over the county practically without our lives or well being, being in danger.. It's disgusting that society has disintegrated so badly..
2 people like this
• United States
10 Apr 07
Of course this mother's reaction is deplorable..!
2 people like this
@misheleen73 (6037)
• United States
8 Apr 07
I have had one of my sons wander away in a store before. I can tell you he will never do that again. He was so scared and crying when I found him finally. We were looking at the televisions as my eldest was going to buy one for his room with a gift card. My youngest decided to walk away to look at something and didn't know how to get back to us. I would never blame the parent in such a situation, as my son was old enough to know better. And was told to stay right beside us. I would not however beat my child once I found him. I hugged him so hard, as I was so frantic looking for him. I left my husband in the television section while I looked for him just in case he came back to the area. I think if a child is too young to know to stay close, he/she should be in a cart. If they are old enough, it is their fault for wandering off, but they do not deserve what you described.
6 people like this
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
8 Apr 07
If the child is old enough to understand he cannot wander away, I would agree that the parent is not at fault. And yes, I would agree that hugging is the logical reaction if the lost child is found :)
5 people like this
@repzkoopz (1895)
• Philippines
8 Apr 07
its definitely the parents fault. children are usually curious about things. and they tend to break away. but this doesn't mean its their fault. parents should be aware of what their children is doing. if their children breaks away, they should react as quick as possible. specially if its a crowded place. parents should know they are responsible for all the child's actions because they're the ones bringing up the child. c',)
6 people like this
@Ravenladyj (22919)
• United States
8 Apr 07
OMG THATS HORRID!! and I have to say kudos to you for remaining so calm cause if it'd been me..omg I would have LOST MY MIND and gone up one side and down the other of the mother for putting her hands on that child like that....EVEN IF it WAS (hypothetically) the little girls fault, belittling her, abusing her, treating her less than human in private is unacceptable but to do that in public would warrent you getting a beating from me!! Who is to blame? IMO the parent/caregiver is MORE if not completely to blame really....childre DO tend to wander off, theyre kids and curious at that...so its up to us as parents to ALWAYS be mindful of their whereabouts when we are out...
4 people like this
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
9 Apr 07
no no, I don't think beating the mother up will do any good to the little girl. I always try to remain calm in any grave circumstances.
@charms88 (7540)
• Philippines
8 Apr 07
That middle aged woman is not fit to be called a mother. No mother ever react violently toward their children. I haven't seen a mother like that. It may be because she was scared for her little girl, but the way she handled her child was not right. I once lost my eldest girl. Its a good thing the supermarket was not crowded and the staffs knew me well. I was frantically searching for my little one and one staff spotted her looking at some silly girly magazines. I just hug her and gave in to my first breathe again. I thought I'm going to have a heart attack that time. :)
@urbandekay (18306)
8 Apr 07
Maybe you should have performed a citizens arrest on the woman and taken her to the police station for assaulting her child. all the best urban
3 people like this
@clownfish (3274)
• United States
8 Apr 07
That's what I would have done, but she would have fallen down some steps and tripped a few times along the way! She's just lucky I wasn't there, that mom wouldn't have gotten off so easily. It just breaks my heart the way some people treat their children.
@urbandekay (18306)
9 Apr 07
Clownfish, now you are sounding like a real copper! all the best urban
1 person likes this
@Darkwing (21586)
8 Apr 07
I would say it was a little of each of them to blame, but the mother is the most responsible and should ensure her daughter doesn't get so bored as to wander off, whilst she is shopping. You don't state the age you think the girl was, but anyway, the mother has no excuse, even in fear to batter the child and tug on her hair. I would think, as you do, that she would be so relieved as to hugh the child closely, not show her anger at an already frightened child. If she needed to express how scared and angy the child had made her, all she needed to do was hug the child and then talk to her strictly and tell her how afraid the child had made her. I definitely think that the mother should accept the main responsibility because the child probably was being ignored, got bored and decided to move away a little to look at something more interesting to her. Mother is my bet! Plus, a little control needs to be displayed, as a parent, together with a little more understanding. Brightest Blessings.
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
9 Apr 07
Yes, talking strictly to the child while hugging the child should be able to make the child understand that she is wrong to wander away and the scared she has given the mother. Even if the child does not understand, it would not frightened the child and instill into the child the solemnness and gravity of what she has done.
@Darkwing (21586)
11 Apr 07
Yes, that's quite right, Why.
@bluewings (3857)
8 Apr 07
If a child gets away from her parents,I can't say either of them are at fault because the child is just a child and won't quite realise that she is getting away,while the parent might be busy doing something important during that moment and might be oblivious to what's going on within the little one's mind. However,when she harasses her child for getting away from her ,definitely it is the mother's fault.If she is so loving and caring mother worried about her child getting away ,then the first thing ,as you rightly pointed out, should be to hug her and reassure her that everything is alright.Beating and hitting her doesn't solve a purpose.She won't remember this as a happy incident.'No One',neither a child nor adult like people abusing and beating them. If the mother was thinking that she is giving her a lesson for the future ,then it was a 'Very' wrong way.If she did it because she couldn't control her emotions ,then she better learn fast or she will repent later.It was definitely 'Not' the child's fault because they don't come programmed to stick with their parents and even if you instruct them ,they are a little different from robots.
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
9 Apr 07
I would think the mother was trying to give her child a lesson for the future. And I cannot imagine how the mother will react if the child was a robot :P
@bluewings (3857)
9 Apr 07
She'd pull her circuits:-P Honestly,she should have put herself in the child's shoes before acting crazy.
• Singapore
8 Apr 07
I would say, both are at fault. The mother has a responsibility to the girl - what does a little girl know about not getting lost? The girl has a responsibility to be obedient to her mother. Walking away when asked to stay at one spot is just not being good. Then again, you don't know the whole story so how can you even being to judge? - if judging is even your prerogative. I have a hypothesis for the mother's behavior though. Imagine you losing your daughter and not being able to find her no matter how hard you try. When you finally find her, all your worries naturally disappear and you will be so frustrated at her for disappearing. This is quite a rare, but real, switch in reaction - as drastic as it may sound. But ultimately, I can wager that the mama will give the girl a good hug, with quite some tears too.
3 people like this
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
9 Apr 07
The hypothesis might be true for a stressed and agitated mother. And hopefully she gives her girl a hug after she has calmed down.
• Singapore
9 Apr 07
Probably, hopefully.
@arkaf61 (10881)
• Canada
9 Apr 07
In my opinion it is the parents fault. If you think you are going to get too involved in your shopping experience that you might loose track of your child, then don't take her. Kids get bored easily, are attracted to pretty displays that might be farther than what they think, and they don't really notice how far they're getting until it's too late. Asking them to stay still doesn't always work and it certainly is the parents responsibility to keep an eye in their children. Of course most of us had one of those panic moments where we can't see our child, but if we've been paying attention we can see that they're not far away. I have however seen people get so involved in looking at this and that, picking up clothes, trying out shoes that they end up forgetting they have their chid/children with them They just say " stay here" and then keep moving around following the pretties on display. Then they get upset when they realise the kids are not where they left them. I've even seen a case where the child actually stayed where she was told to and the mother was the one that kept wandering and forgot where she left her daughter. To top it of , she had the nerve to punish the kid!!!!!!!!!!!
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
11 Apr 07
That was indeed a forgetful mother, or rather, a irresponsible mother.
• Canada
8 Apr 07
I think it was the mothers fault. Honestly, kids will wander off from time to time and it's up to us as parents to ensure they don't go too far away. This is the reason I used a kids leash on my sons till they were old enough to walk beside us without wandering off. If I ever lost my child though, I would never never NEVER do what this woman did. Her attitude STINKS! If I lost my child, I would be so relieved at finding them that I'd hug them, not start pulling their hair and dragging them away. What kind of mother must she be to not only do that at all, but to do it in front of everyone?
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
10 Apr 07
Kids leash? I cannot imagine how the kids feel when learnt about it :P
• United States
8 Apr 07
Children are children. That said, they should always be understood. The problem with some parents is that they think their responsibility ends right after they have made the child survive in this world. There is a great need for mothers (most especially in the case you've mentioned) to realize the growing patterns and the possible repercussions of a child to tend to engage in their own wonderland, to run their imagination wild, to be amazed at new things around them, and to engage in all other things that only a child could appreciate which most adults (having lived their lives for a lengthy period of time) couldn't. They have to realize that they were children once. That said, I agree with you that the mother here is at fault. As the old man has said, "she lost the child, and not the child getting lost" which is the issue. She should have been happy and relieved to have seen her child once more. Happy myLotting, whyaskq!
3 people like this
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
10 Apr 07
Mothers are really great to wear so many hats and shoulder such high responsibility alone :P
8 Apr 07
Every Saturday we shop in our large supermarket, there are always parents running around or screaming out their kids name, how do you let your kids just wonder away? I have found three so far, one baby (18 months) outside a school, another in a park (4 years old) and the worst one was at night in the rain! (2 years old) he had opened the front door of his house and decided to go for a walk, I found him in the ROAD, just sitting there with a nappy on, my husband now asks me not to find any more children when I go out and just come back with some food like much people do!!!!!!
3 people like this
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
9 Apr 07
You certainly do have an affinity with lost children :P What happen to the lost children? Do they get to become your adopted or god children?
@emeraldisle (13139)
• United States
8 Apr 07
I'd say a lot depends on the age of the child. A ten year old wanders off and gets lost it's usually the kids fault but a two year old? That's the parents. For myself when my neice was younger (under 4) we had this cord that went between us. It had a velcro bracelet on each end and a telephone cord in between. We both had to wear it. It allowed her to walk around and wander without getting too far away from me and since we were both attached in the same way it wasn't degrading to her. Sorry I do not like the harnesses that some parents use. Over all though when we are dealing with children that are not school age the parent does need to be vigilant in keeping their eyes on them. I agree it's not always easy and they can be gone in a blink of the eye. Once they are school age they should have some understanding of staying close to mommy or daddy.
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
9 Apr 07
I am not sure how old is the child but I guess it is about 4-5 years old.
• Philippines
8 Apr 07
I have never and wish will never happen to loose my daugther in a crowd. I think I will go crazy because of worrying. And I'll blame myself because I left her out my sight. So for me, it is the parents' responsibility to watch over their children. Not the other way around. Because children are easily distracted by anything. It is the obligation of the parents to assure the welfare of their child. (^^,)
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
9 Apr 07
I agree with you. Parents should be responsible for their child at all times, especially if the child is still young.
@Ysibli (91)
• United States
8 Apr 07
I think they're both at fault. The mother for not keeping a better eye on her child and the child for wandering. But i feel that after finding her child the mother should have felt releived instead of angered. The poor child was probably scared enough as it was and then to have to deal with an abusive mother on top of it. If I had been there I would have stood up for the girl. It's not right to hit a child...anyone for that matter.
3 people like this
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
9 Apr 07
You are indeed righteous! The world would be more graceful if there are more of you ;)
@beaniegdi (1965)
8 Apr 07
It isn't right to hit children like this because they have become lost or for anything. She may have been angry with the girl but that is no excuse. I would just be so relived to find mine if I had lost one that I would just be glad to see them and guilty for losing them. I am glad the crowd told this woman straight that her behaviour was unacceptable as it may make her think twice about hitting her child like that. It is not necessary anyones fault if a child goes missing as it can happen in seconds but it is a parents fault if they chose to over react with violence to a situation like this one.
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
9 Apr 07
I really wish the mother will straighten her thoughts and realised she has acted rashly.
@smartmom (827)
• United States
8 Apr 07
What a terrible situtation, and what a terrible mother. There is simply no exuse for such behavior. If the mother can act like this in public, it makes me wonder...and fear, how she behaves in side the walls of their home. Poor girl. I certainky think that in most cases both child and parent are at fault in these lost cases, I was lost a few times myself, and I surely were not completely innocent. The parent is at fault for not being more careful and keeping a close eye on the child, while the child is at fault for not staying with the parent, for wandering off, or for not listening to the parent. I have tried a few times, where I could not see my oldest son, because he ran off, or tried to hide from me, and it scared me so much, my hearrate went up, and I felt that panicky feeling overwhelming me. I have always been able to locate him in a matter of seconds, but I can definitely see, how it is possible to loose a child, especially in crowded places.
@whyaskq (7529)
• Singapore
9 Apr 07
The little girl appeared frightened. I guessed you know and understand your child well and this helps locate him easily. You would have known what interest him :)
@jenskids (99)
• United States
8 Apr 07
I feel that it is neither the child nor the parent who is at fault. It is the human in both the child and the parent that is responsible for the separation, the parent tends to get involed in what he or she is interested in. The child also does the same thing, they see something that they like, and they, the same as the parent get interested and forget about the parent. In other words the child wanders off doing the same thing the parent is doing, not to notice the child has wandered off, they are totally focused on what ever it is they are interested in and have no idea that they are wandering off.
3 people like this
• United States
8 Apr 07
I it the MOTHER'S fault, we have all lost our children in a store or someplace else, it is a frighten occasion when we do, but it always the parent's fault, if they had paid closer attention to the child it would not have happened. Children are innocent and do not leave our side but other than to play, it is our responsibility to watch them and protect them from harm.
3 people like this