May 08, 2005

Abuse-Who's Fault is it?

Several of my classmates and I were standing in line for graduation ceremonies and discussing the boy that was suspended for ten days for disobeying his teacher. He did not hang up on his mother in Iraq when told to..and he was talking to her during a time that was against the rules to do so. There were many different opinions. I can understand the vast number of opinions on this and see how each can be argued effectively from different viewpoints.

However, one person said that the kid should be shown no mercy for talking back and getting emotional with the teachers at all. This pushed me to point out how every person and every person's circumstances is different and that the boy may not have seen his mother for six months or talked to her for a month and had every reason to be emotional about having to hang up on her. (So many people are so quick to judge without giving it any thought at all!!) Then, he started saying things about kids needing to have control...because he did when he was growing up because his Dad made him walk a fine line. So I asked him about the kids that didn't have Dads and had crackhead moms or were abused by their parents, etc.

His reply left me momentarily speechless. (Now remember....this is a fellow NURSING graduate that is supposed to help these types of people!!) He said, "If they are being abused at home, then they should tell their teachers or authority figures. If they don't, then it is their own damn fault. It's just like the damn women that stay with a man that beats the shit out of her. She deserves it if she stays and puts up with it."

I became so angry that I saw stars and flashing lights. I remained calm and calmly asked him about what he had learned about the children protecting their abusers because it was all that they knew and that it was also their providers and the ones that kissed their boo boos and tucked them in at night. I asked him about the high statstics of murder of women that leave abusive husbands and about them being afraid and worried about what would happent to their children. He said, "That shouldn't matter! They should rather die than stay in that...and if they are dead, then they can't worry about it."

At this point, I became upset and more angry. I couldn't remain calm and not show emotion anymore. I just didn't work. I tried to tell him that he needed to try to look at things from a different perspective because he would not give good care to his patients or benefit them with an attitude like that. I asked him to educate himself some more on it. He informed me that he was educated plenty and that if I had persoanl issues with it, he didn't want to discuss it anymore. I told him that was fine, I didn't care to hear anymore of his uncaring comments either, but that I did want to say one more thing and plead with him to think about it and educate himself more on the subject so he could be a patient advocate when the situation arose because one out of every three women are abused.

An instructor told us that when we got into the field, we would find a hill that we would die on. I think that this will be mine. I am devastated that people have this attitude towards abuse, but am horrified that a fellow nursing graduate is so shallow.

Posted by Barbara at May 8, 2005 02:35 PM