Wednesday, January 12, 2011

I'm Sorry...My Child Killed Your Child

Jared Loughner
Saturday's tragic Arizona shooting spree sent shockwaves through the nation, and this recent assassination attempt of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords has the world is reeling in the aftermath of this senseless crime. Jared Lee Loughner, age 22, has been charged with wounding 13 and killing six people.  His eerie mugshot only helped to confirm that he had to be "crazy" to do something like this!

One of those killed was 9-yr-old Christina Green. Her mother described her inexplicable grief as “beyond words,” saying her daughter was a beautiful and intelligent child who was interested in government. "I just can't even put it into words,” Green said to news reporters, her voice trembling. “I can't express the devastation and hurt and how we were so robbed of our beautiful princess.”

But just as Christina's parents are trying to cope with her murder, another family apologizes for her killer's actions. Recently, Jared's parents released the following statement:

"There are no words that can possibly express how we feel. We wish that there were so we could make you feel better. We don't understand why this happened. It may not make any difference but we wish that we could change the heinous events of Saturday. We care very deeply about the victims and their families we are so very sorry for their loss."

This had me thinking...can parents truly apologize for their child's actions?  We do it all the time, don't we?  Think about how we apologize to other parents on the playground when our child doesn't take turns on the slide.  I'll never forget the time that my, then 2-yr-old, daughter hit a classmate in the face (sigh) for no apparent reason.  I must have apologized for months because I felt remorseful for my baby girl's actions. 

So....is there a difference between apologizing for your underaged child's actions, inactions, and faults and apologizing for your adult child.  I think so.  When parents apologize for their adult children it seems as though it is an attempt to assure others that they are good parents and not the cause of the problem.  Moreover, it's a way of distancing themselves from the choices that their child made.  You see it in the statement that Jared's parents released as they describe his actions as heinous.  However, the truth is that there is nothing that Jared's parents can say to ease the pain that his actions caused.  Yet the fact that they tried to do so is human nature...or should I say parent nature

Christina Green
So today as I write this post, two sets of parents are grieving.  One set because their adorable baby girl now has angel wings...and the other because their son is responsible for causing her to earn wings prematurely.  Sigh....  My thoughts and prayers are with all of those directly and indirectly affected by this crime.



Sidebar note to parents....

Mental illness is a true issue, and early detection and treatment is critical.  No, not all individuals with psychiatric concerns are homicidal or suicidal. However, proper diagnosis and treatment is always beneficial.  If you have concerns about changes in your child's behavior, habits, social circle....intervene immediately before it's too late.




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An open and honest blog about what matters most...Children and families!!!!

2 comments:

  1. Excellent points G. I do however, have a great deal more respect for the parents that has the courage to stand up and recognize that their adult offspring acted in an obscene way. It sure beats a parent that says nothing or worse, tries to defend their monster's behavior/actions.
    Unfortunately, nothing they say will undo the damage that has been done, but it does show at least a glimpse of respect for the victims, which is more than I can say for the Sarah Palins and Glen Becks of the world who refuse to acknowledge any role that they MAY have played in stoking the flames that ultimately led to this tragedy.
    Kenny

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  2. Hi Kenny,

    I certainly agree with you that saying nothing or (lawd forbid) defending would be the worst thing to do! It's got to be a difficult place for the family to be in because the world is looking at them and their son and trying to find the causal factor for why he turned into a murderer. But just as they are distancing themselves, so too are others. Nobody wants to take ownership of this horrible situation. ~g~

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