Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Its Time to Put Down the Pitchforks ; Accidents Happen, Yet Parents Face

Newspaper article Charleston Gazette Mail

Its Time to Put Down the Pitchforks ; Accidents Happen, Yet Parents Face

Article excerpt

When did everyone become so doggone perfect?

Or, better yet, when did parenting become an exercise in perfection?

Anyone with kids often laments just how hard it is raising the next generation. From sleepless nights as newborns to mishaps as toddlers to the Im-smarter-than-you school years, it seems parenting is a never-ending series of exhausting challenges. Then there are the teenage years. Its true kids dont come with manuals. That would make things too easy. The only things parents have to rely on are their own gut feelings and a heaping helping of patience and love.

Even the most mild-mannered children have their moments of calamity the meltdowns at the grocery store, the refusal to eat anything remotely nutritious, pulling all the books off the shelves at the library.

Many times, other parents who witness such escapades moms in particular might shoot a pitying glance. Been there, done that, their eyes say.

Its reassurance that were all in this parenting game together, just taking each day at a time and trying to survive.

Why is it, then, that when tragedy strikes, the pitying glances become judgmental glares? When accidents happen, suddenly were not all in this together.

Last week, a toddler walking along the shores of a lagoon at a Disney World resort was attacked by an alligator. The 2-year-olds parents watched in horror as their child was dragged under water by the giant animal. His father, bless his heart, tried to fight the beast, but nature won. The boys body was recovered the next day.

This is the definition of a tragedy. A family no doubt enjoying the vacation of a lifetime at the Happiest Place on Earth suddenly lost their child through an unexpected tragedy.

Instead of a joyous vacation, the family is experiencing the worst kind of pain the kind of grief no parent should ever have to go through.

But instead of showing love to this family, many sanctimonious know-it-alls have taken to the internet to shame these parents.

Dont worry, Im sure the alligator was just protecting the boy. Man, where were the parents? Lets blame them instead of the alligator, reads one Facebook comment on a New York Times post. …

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